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Message Board > Sewing Machines > Walking foot for Singer 401A ( Moderated by Sharon1952, EleanorSews)

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Walking foot for Singer 401A
Anybody else have first hand experience of slant WF?
KathyWalsh05
KathyWalsh05
Beginner
MA USA
Member since 7/21/09
Posts: 77
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Date: 2/12/11 11:04 PM

I have a 401A which I have been using more and more and Just love. I am diving back into sewing knits after a 15 year break. To avoid the dreaded Issues With Knits, I bought a generic WF. So far, the WF works well to keep both layers of fabric sewing evenly down the length. It is creating problems from left to right. I guide the fabric along the 5/8 seam line on machine bed and slides under the front feed dogs of the WF but when it gets punctured by the needle, the fabric drags to the left. This leaves the seam allowance off by 1/4". I have used a WF on my Singer 99, and it worked perfectly. I am using a ball point needle and am not sewing too fast.
Has this happened to anyone else? Am I doing something wrong with the WF?

BTW, I sewed lots of knits years ago before I "knew" they were difficult, and that was on a crappy 1970's Singer. I'm trying to pick up where I left off but this project has been frustrating. It was a bear to cut out too and I'm afraid each layer of difficulty is going to make this a wadder of a learning experience.

Donna H
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Donna H
WA USA
Member since 9/29/05
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In reply to KathyWalsh05


Date: 2/13/11 0:33 AM

Try sewing your knits WITHOUT the walking foot. Also, try changing your needle. Do you have a STRETCH needle, instead of a ball point?

Also, check your presser foot pressure. Maybe it's set too high (as in more pressure on the fabric).

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SewPaula
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SewPaula  Friend of PR
Advanced Beginner
MO USA
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Date: 2/13/11 8:24 AM

I found that a knit foot works better than the walking foot for my 401a. This foot has teeth that hold the fabric from the top while the stitch is being made then raises up so the feed dogs can move the fabric.

I bought mine from Gone Sewing (dafent on ebay):

Knit Foot

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If I were a sewing machine, all I would have to do is lift up my foot and all my tension would be gone.

Sewing with my lovelies: Pfaff Ambition 1.5 (Pfoxxy), Kenmore 385.19365 (Kenny), Babylock Imagine and BLCS, 3 brothers (PE150 aka Gary, 1034D aka Scott and 2340V aka Darrell -- named for my three brothers), and the Singer quartet (Rosemary the 401a, Judy the 15-88, Ella the 15-91 and Bessie the 128)

Miss Fairchild
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USA
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In reply to KathyWalsh05


Date: 2/13/11 8:29 AM

I never use a walking foot on knits, but much rather like the knit foot. And I have one of those crappy 1970's (actually 1960's) models. SewPaula has it right. The walking foot is for fabric to feet evenly on both top and bottom; used for plaids and quilting. Knits have a tendency to stretch while stitching; that's why you are getting the wonky seam allowance.
-- Edited on 2/13/11 8:30 AM --

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KathyWalsh05
KathyWalsh05
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MA USA
Member since 7/21/09
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In reply to Donna H


Date: 2/13/11 9:40 AM

Thanks for the reply Donna. I will try without WF today and dig around for a stretch needle. I am confused about the presser foot pressure... SHOULD it be high, or low? I did set it high- ish, thinking to hold the fabric more firmly and avoid it being yanked out of line. Should it be lower?

KathyWalsh05
KathyWalsh05
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MA USA
Member since 7/21/09
Posts: 77
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In reply to SewPaula


Date: 2/13/11 10:03 AM

Sew Paula and Miss Fairchild-
Thank you for the info on the knit foot. It sounds like it works to keep the fabric down near the plate while the needle is going through- and that's where the problem is starting. I had never heard of a knit foot- despite the many hours I log reading sewing related stuff on the internet!
As for my old crappy Singer, WHEN it sewed, the knit clothing turned out fine. (perhaps because the thread broke so often, that lent some stretch to the seam?- lol.) Last year I gave up on a free T+S that drove me nuts too.
Now I use the reliable, non nesting 401A ... so it stitches, but yes, the seam is messed up. Crazy making.
Today I will try the stretch needle with no WF and hope that works, as I really don't want to have to go shopping and waiting for a slant knit foot.

stirwatersblue
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stirwatersblue
Intermediate
KS USA
Member since 12/13/08
Posts: 3071
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Date: 2/13/11 5:42 PM

Wow--I've never even heard of a knit foot! Wonder if Viking has one...

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~Gem in the prairie

Sewing Joe
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Sewing Joe
IN USA
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In reply to Donna H


Date: 2/13/11 6:47 PM

I was thinking there was an issue with using a stretch needle on an older machine. Something about the hook to needle clearance being too close. I have something in the back of my mind that the hook might actually touch a stretch needle because the scarf on the needle is too close to the hook, and that could damage the hook. I was think 401s were particularly susceptible to this because the hook is set really close to the needle to avoid skipped stitches. I could be out in left field, but you might want to be careful until you're sure it isn't creating a big problem.

------
Joe in New Albany, iN

KathyWalsh05
KathyWalsh05
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MA USA
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In reply to Sewing Joe


Subject: Knit sewing and needles with Singer 401A Date: 2/14/11 1:25 PM

Yikes, don't want to kill the poor thing now that she is an active member in the sewing room. I'll ask the experts in the Singer slant yahoo group and post the answer here.

terrisewsew

terrisewsew
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OK USA
Member since 3/13/09
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In reply to SewPaula


Date: 2/14/11 3:32 PM

Hi. I have a ? if you don't mind. The walking foot listed in your link doesn't list the 401 as a machine that it will fit. Does that foot fit your 401? If so, do you think it will fit other older machines also? TIA for your answer. Terri

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