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Topic: thread feeding from top tangling underneath fabric  (Read 1225 times)
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« on: August 04, 2012 12:14:27 AM »

Hi all,

I'm having ongoing problems with my sewing machine. It's an elderly Singer 401A, but is in pretty good nick. It's just been in to be fixed, which fixed one problem(where it whirred for anything up to 10 seconds before beginning to sew)  improved the other...for a week. The other problem is that the thread that feeds from the top of the machine is snarling and loose underneath the fabric. I was told it was a tention problem and that there'd been some thread wound around the tension mechanism, which my repair guy removed and then recalibrated the mechanism. This more-or-less(still tiny bit loose in places but huge improvement) fixed the problem...flash forward to a week later. I sit down to to the final hem on my a-line skirt, and it's worse than ever! I'm posting a sample of the problem on a left-over scrap. It's the underside of the fabric. Does anyone know what else I can do? I've already threaded, rethreaded, adjusted the tension knob, put a new needle in and tried a different bobbin.

Thanks for any help, this is driving me up the wall!
« Last Edit: August 07, 2012 06:04:33 AM by Aislynn » THIS ROCKS   Logged

« Reply #1 on: August 04, 2012 01:06:09 AM »

I have sort of fixed the problem. Something is clearly stuffed in the tension mechanism, but if I feed the the upper thread underneath the stitch selector knob in the centre of the machine, it fixes the stitching. I discovered this by accident, but it'll do as a temporary fix. It looks like I need a new tension mechanism though. Are these even still available for a machine circa 1958?

Sky is the limit
« Reply #2 on: August 20, 2012 05:17:18 PM »

I had the same problem with my Singer machine for a while but when I put my tension in the middle point it was better (although it depends on the type of fabric you use). The other thing is that you may have threaded your machine over and over to try to fix it but are you thread it correctly at the needle thread tension disc level? I learned recently that I was threading it the wrong way at that point which caused a straight connection with this problem.
« Reply #3 on: August 21, 2012 11:22:36 AM »

My 6 year old Janome's tensioner got whacked out after sewing four layers of marine vinyl and did the crazy bobbin birds-nest thing. I had to take the entire tensioner assembly apart and adjust it. Guess what happened the next time I sewed marine vinyl? YEP! Had to do it over again Tongue

I managed to find diagrams of the tensioner and how to adjust it online (on part of the eBay forums, if you can believe that!). Considering there is a HUGE online vintage sewing machine community, you should look for forums that specialize in vintage Singers and ask for advice from the truly knowledgeable.

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