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Message Board > Sewing Machines > Serger knife problems ( Moderated by Sharon1952, EleanorSews)

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Serger knife problems
knife is "chewing" not cutting fabric
JenSews2
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JenSews2  Friend of PR
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Member since 2/21/04
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Date: 11/20/06 9:18 PM


I've happily been using my Elna 945 and haven't noticed a problem and yesterday it seemed to be working fine. I switched to coverstitch and then today switched it back and now the serger knife is chewing up the fabric! Argghh. I just checked the project I made yesterday and it looks fine. Today though, I can't get it to cut properly! Of course, I'm right in the middle of a new project.

I tried cleaning around the knife. I've tried changing knifes thinking I've never done that, perhaps it is time. It's not helping. In fact the new knife is doing a little worse...

Anything else I could check before I have to take this in?

Thanks,
Jen

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*Jen*
If I stitch fast enough, does it count as aerobic exercise?

Betakin
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Betakin
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In reply to JenSews2


Date: 11/20/06 10:00 PM

Jen, if you are sewing on very heavy fabric you might need to lock your knife. ( A nice Elna feature) I have not yet done this but on my 744 it is located on the inside near the stitch width dial. I hope your knives are aligned properly. Try cleaning and lubricating the knives and also try changing your width and see if that helps. I hope you don't have to take it in for repair and can finish your project.

diane s
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diane s  Friend of PR
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Date: 11/20/06 10:03 PM

It will take a few years to dull a knife, but if you think the knife is dull, you can change it yourself, there's usually a spare in the toolbox. .Synthetic fabrics will dull the knife faster than natural fibers, polyester fleece 'polarfleece' is the worst.

------
My grandmother taught me to sew when I was 10, and I've been sewing ever since.

JenSews2
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JenSews2  Friend of PR
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Date: 11/20/06 10:05 PM

Yesterday it was Rayon/Poly/Lycra from Joann (mid-light weight). Today it is a lighter 100% cotton, so it's not the fabric weight.

It's like someone came and sent the serger out of whack overnight! The meanie serger genie must have visited.

I changed the knife and it didn't help. I certainly didn't run over a pin or anything since I don't put pins in while serging.

Maybe I'll try a heavier fabric and see if that helps. I had been sewing flannel for a few days, but didn't notice any problems except for fuzzies which I've cleaned out.

Jen
-- Edited on 11/20/06 10:08 PM --

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*Jen*
If I stitch fast enough, does it count as aerobic exercise?

ValerieJ
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ValerieJ  Friend of PR
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Date: 11/21/06 11:21 AM

You've probably checked this already, but you mentioned that before you had the knife problem you were using a cover stitch. On my 925 the upper knife is rotated down out of the way to do a cover stitch. I'm wondering if the problem is that the upper knife isn't rotated all the way back up. It doesn't seem like the knife could be dull yet, but if the blades aren't meeting the way they're supposed to you might have the problem you're describing.

Valerie



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Date: 11/21/06 12:11 PM

I know JenSews said changing to a new knife didn't correct the problem but I had to do that just a couple of weeks ago and it did correct my problem. I have an Imagine serger and have sewed (rolled edge hem) probably 30 - 35 flannel receiving blankets in the past year in addition to some regular seam finishing use of my serger. I am very loyal to thoroughly cleaning my serger after each session, and in the case of the blankets, I clean it even during projects, as in between each blanket that I serge. Anyway, recently my serger just didn't want to keep the rolled edge seam on the fabric in spite of every thing I tried and even though the knife seemed to be cutting properly. All I needed was a new knife and everything is back to perfect serging again. I'm thinking as someone else mentioned that perhaps the knife if just not back up to its correct position. I don't have a CS machine, or a CS on my machine, so don't know how those work but it's worth checking to make sure the knife is set correctly. My knife can be locked too, as I think most serger knives can be, not just Elna's.

AliceM
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AliceM
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Date: 11/21/06 2:16 PM

I've had the same problem Valerie described. When the knife starts chewing it has always been an adjustment problem.

PegL
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PegL
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In reply to JenSews2


Date: 11/21/06 2:32 PM

I'm almost willing to bet it's an adjustment problem and not a dull blade. Since you probably turned the blade down out of the way to use the coverstitch, probably what happened is that the screw that controls the position setting on the blade slipped a little. Your top blade has moved too far away from the lower blade. See if your manual shows you where this adjustment is located. I wish you were close enough I could come do it for you as this is a ''BTDT'' (been there, done that) for me!

Peg

------
"I hate housework! You make the beds, you do the dishes--and six months later you have to start all over again!"

Pfaff 2170, Pfaff 7570, Pfaff 4852, Babylock Coverstitch, Bernina 1090, Bernina 1020, Gammill Quilting machine

Betakin
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Betakin
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Date: 11/21/06 3:45 PM

Jen, when you switched back to overlock from Coverhem did you remember to flip up the stitch finger again? Also, should you use a screwdriver to lock the knife for extra heavy material don't forget to unlock it.
Loiry, not all sergers have knives that can be locked. Pfaff, Elna's and a few other brands with the recessed knifes have this feature. Some other brands with the higher knifes next to the needle that can be pushed aside rather than dropped like a recessed knife do operate a bit differently.
-- Edited on 11/21/06 3:48 PM --

JenSews2
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JenSews2  Friend of PR
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Date: 11/21/06 9:26 PM

I tried everyone's suggestions and nothing seemed to work, so I sent it in. My FatherIL was here and he lives close to the dealer, so he just took it. The dealer ended up having to keep it for adjustment since it was not a quick fix like we thought.

So now I am sergerless! I was such on a roll with my sewing too, getting so many projects done.

Maybe I'll stick with cutting things out to sew up when I get it back so I won't have a lot of down time.

Jen
-- Edited on 11/21/06 9:28 PM --

------
*Jen*
If I stitch fast enough, does it count as aerobic exercise?

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