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Message Board > Beginner's Forum > Change the needle? ( Moderated by EleanorSews)

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Change the needle?
how can you tell you need a new one?
ninacrum
ninacrum
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Date: 3/7/13 3:23 PM

I've seen the advice to change the needle after each project. I just started, so I haven't made much: one little bag, one pair of pajama pants, and part of a skirt, plus some testing/playing around with the stitch choices. The needle seems the same to me. Should I be changing it already? What are signs of it being worn out? Thx!

Sewncooknmom
Sewncooknmom
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Date: 3/7/13 3:48 PM

Feel the needle and see if there are any burrs. It would be around the eye area. Also, having skipped stitches when you sew is another indicator that you should change your needle.

I want to say it is every project or so that your needle should be changed. I need to do better in changing out my needles more often!

kowgiirl.up
kowgiirl.up
Intermediate
OR USA
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In reply to ninacrum <<
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Date: 3/7/13 5:46 PM

I check the tip (pointy end) of the needle for burrs like the person above me said. I'm not one to change needles all the time if I'm sewing the same fabric type even after several projects. I'm lazy that way .

I keep an eye on my stiches to see if I have any 'skips'/missed stitches then I change out the needle if I have any or if my top thread starts breaking. When I have the top thread breaking the first thing I rule out when I'm trying to figure out why, is to change out the needle.

I hope you are enjoying the world of sewing. Sounds like you have made a good start on projects.

------
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sings2high
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Date: 3/7/13 6:53 PM

When my needle gets dull, the needle hitting the fabric starts to sound like thunka, thunka, thunka!

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HanPanda
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HanPanda
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Date: 3/7/13 7:21 PM

You'll also need to change your needle if you hit a pin while sewing--it can create anything from a BIG bend to a tiny bend, but makes problems for sewing. My eyes are still pretty good, so I'll hold a needle up to the light and rotate it to see if there is any change in shape. For small projects that don't take a lot of time at the machine, I think you can go a couple projects before changing. I change after any big project AND when I'm changing fabric types. I do a lot of projects that involve multiple fabrics, so I'll pull out my 11 needle for an 8 if I'm going to something really fine. I'll save the 11 (and the 8!) if I haven't used them for too terribly long though.

hth!!!

------
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In: 68.5 yards
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I'll try anything once :)

Please excuse my typos...sometimes it is harder to go back and edit on mobile than it is worth!

ninacrum
ninacrum
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In reply to kowgiirl.up <<


Date: 3/7/13 11:23 PM

Thanks! I'm having a lot of fun and learning so much. :)

PattyE
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Date: 3/7/13 11:44 PM

I'm one who changes the needle every time I start a new project. It makes sense because different fabrics need different types of needles.

lelliebunny
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lelliebunny  Friend of PR
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Date: 3/8/13 1:59 AM

I have heard every 8-10 hours, every 4 bobbins, and everytime you start a new project. I look at my stitches and listen to how the machine is sewing. Any weird noises or skipped stitches and I try swapping the needle.

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Miss Fairchild
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Miss Fairchild  Friend of PR
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Date: 3/8/13 2:04 AM

I change my needle after 8 hours of stitching, no matter what. Needles are cheap and repair bills are high.
Have you seen this? It has sections for the type of needle and the amount of time used. I use one and place a large brightly colored pin in the section I'm using at the time, and store the rest of my needles in there.

------
"Play the cards you are dealt, but choose who is sitting at the table"..AARP magazine

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NonieA1
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Date: 3/8/13 6:43 AM

I, too, change the needle after about 4 hours of sewing. If I use a needle for top stitching, I remove it and replace it in the holder with the flat face showing so I know it has been used but still has life in it. I change my needle frequently as I do alterations. Sometimes a client has multiple fibers and I change for each fiber;again, returning the needle in the holder with the flat side facing out so I know it has been used. Otherwise, I toss the needle after 4 hours of stitching or any embroidery article of more than 35,000 stitches. It is just not worth it having skipped or frayed stitches.

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