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Thread: FW Hesitates Before First Stitch- Any Ideas?

  1. #1
    Super Member SusieQOH's Avatar
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    FW Hesitates Before First Stitch- Any Ideas?

    Hi all,

    I have a FW that works great except for one thing- it hesitates before it starts to stitch. I have to touch the handwheel to "get it going". It happens a lot, but not all the time.

    I oiled and lubed it just last week.

    I was wondering if it could be the pedal or the motor? I really have no idea. Both are the originals.

    TIA for any wisdom.

  2. #2
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    You need to watch a video on adjusting the little nut in the foot pedal.

  3. #3
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    The best videos are on the 401a controller. Singer controllers are all the pretty much the same, prior to about 1960.

  4. #4
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    Like Tartan mentions, the pedal might need a bit of adjustment. Another thing that's very common is the need for more cleaning and oiling. If it's been stored away for a while, bit might need a bit of effort to get it running smooth again. Sometimes there are noticeable improvement after cleaning and regreasing the motor. Make sure the motor belt is clean, as well as the groove in the hand wheel and pulley; oil spill is common too.

    I like the original motor and pedal and keep them. They are just as good as the replacement and with a bit of service run like new. Sometimes you can add grease to the wicks in the motor with out any furtehr; but on some machines the grease can be dry and clogg up the wicks. One or two drops of oil can soften the old grease and reach down to the bearings, but be very careful, only one or two drops literally. If oil dribble along the motor axle it will ruin the motor.

  5. #5
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    Another thing I forgot to mention; when I take out my 201K (belt driven motor) I some times have to run it a bit before the belt grips optimally. It doesn't happen all the time, but it now and then I have noticed it. Maybe it just needs a bit of warm up if it's cold. I think it was ArchaicArcane who compared it to car tires, they need to turn a bit to get optimal grip too.
    Last edited by Mickey2; 02-09-2019 at 03:44 PM.

  6. #6
    Super Member Cari-in-Oly's Avatar
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    In addition to what's been suggested, if you make sure the take up lever is at the top/just over the top of its travel when you stop stitching, then when you start a new seam it should take off without help.


    Cari

  7. #7
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    What Cari? I have always been told to start with the needle down in the fabric, funny how we are given totally opposite advice sometimes.

  8. #8
    Super Member SusieQOH's Avatar
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    Thanks, everyone!
    BKay- I heard that very thing from I believe The Featherweight Shop.(about oil ruining the motor). I hope this helps someone.
    I'm going to do some work tomorrow. Thanks again, all!

  9. #9
    Super Member Cari-in-Oly's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mickey2 View Post
    What Cari? I have always been told to start with the needle down in the fabric, funny how we are given totally opposite advice sometimes.
    Mickey that works too. Let me see if I can explain. When you take your foot off the controller to stop sewing you want the needle to be out of the fabric so you can remove it. if the needle isn't high enough when you try to remove your fabric, it looks like you have three threads pulling out from under the machine, right? That's because the last stitch wasn't finished being formed. The needle comes up before the take up lever gets to the top. The take up lever has to be at the top of its travel for the stitch to be finished, and when it is, the needle is already starting to come down again. It's at that exact point that there's the least amount of drag on the motor, and it continues to be until the needle starts to come back up. So putting the needle down into the fabric before you start will work too. It's all about preference and what you're used to. I check the take up lever when I finish so I don't have to check things when I start.

    Cari
    Last edited by Cari-in-Oly; 02-10-2019 at 11:18 AM.

  10. #10
    Super Member coopah's Avatar
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    Check Nova Montgomery's website with trouble-shooting of the electrical system. You may have carbon build up between the carbon brushes and the commutator. She has videos you can watch, too.

    We just took her all day class and came away knowing so much! Plus our machines are now clean! Hubs cleaned one and I cleaned the other.
    "A woman is like a tea bag-you can't tell how strong she is until you put her in hot water." Eleanor Roosevelt

  11. #11
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    Sounds like it just needs the wheel readjusted. There’s a screw behind the wheel, on the motor housing that move the motor back and forth. You just gently adjust the distance between the motor and the wheel until it runs, right away, when you touch the pedal. Also, be sure to start with the needle, truly, in the highest position.
    i believe graphic instructions for doing both of these things, are on the Featherweight shop website.

  12. #12
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    Yeah, it might need a good shaking too and I think it would be a good idea if the owner jumps around the kitchen table on one foot with the Featherweight in her hands. It always does the trick.

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