Hand crank for 401a

Old 04-06-2022, 06:17 AM
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Default Hand crank for 401a

I love my Singer 401a and I like to use it for bowl cozies and other heavy duty sewing. I find that I often have to "walk" it over some of the thicker seams and I was wondering if there is a way to attach a hand crank or something like that to help turn the wheel. Or, do I just need a better technique for sewing such things?

Thanks in advance!
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Old 04-06-2022, 04:05 PM
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Putting a hand crank on a 401 may not be impossible. but it would not be an easy thing. Have you oiled your machine lately. top , bottom and behind the faceplate?
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Old 04-06-2022, 04:47 PM
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It might help you to get over some of the bulkier seams to use a hump jumper sometimes called a jean-ma-jig. It helps keep your foot level so that the machine can sew over bulky seams. If they are really thick, particularly with tightly woven dense fabric like denim, walking it over using the hand wheel is your only option. Better than breaking needles.
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Old 04-07-2022, 05:40 AM
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It really works. I can't believe it's so simple and I didn't know about it. It was called a "seam jumper" the time I was told about it (making masks). They are available commercially. or you can make your own. Annette's blog tells how to make your own, and how to use it.

bkay
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Old 04-07-2022, 07:06 AM
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Thank you, bkay for that link. I had never seen the Bernina's “height compensation tool” I have several of the pointy ones and another one that is rectangle with the ends of which have different heights. I think I learned about going over thick seams, maybe from an early Sewing With Nancy show. I have used cardboard or a seam/hem from cut-off jeans or just heavy fabric rolled up. The Bernina one reminds me of a feeler gauge. I went searching for one online as she indicated that they were $1 from a Bernina dealer (but that was back in 2014). I found a few online that were over $8.

Janey - Neat people never make the exciting discoveries I do.
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Old 04-07-2022, 08:39 AM
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Great link....thank you. This all makes sense when you think about it. (I guess I just never thought!)
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Old 04-09-2022, 07:13 AM
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I use a wooden tongue depressor under the back side of the presser foot. Another technique is to take hammer to flatten the seams as much as possible.
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Old 04-09-2022, 07:36 AM
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Originally Posted by J3General
I use a wooden tongue depressor under the back side of the presser foot. Another technique is to take hammer to flatten the seams as much as possible.
Darn! I wish I would have used the hammer! I was having a frustrating week (not sewing related) and that would have solved two problems with one whack .. or two whacks ... or three whacks ...
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