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Message Board > Beginner's Forum > I can't seem to stitch anything but a straight stitch. ( Moderated by EleanorSews)

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I can't seem to stitch anything but a straight stitch.
truckinsquirtle
truckinsquirtle
Member since 1/8/13
Posts: 6
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Date: 1/8/13 9:59 PM

I have a Sears Kenmore 158.17572 sewing machine, and I don't have a manual for it. No matter what setting I put it on I can't seem to be able to stitch a zigzag or any of the diff types on the pics on the dial. Also has 2 dials with numbers.

Any ideas? I'm getting frustrated

andye
andye  Friend of PR
Beginner
VA USA
Member since 5/9/09
Posts: 1850
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Date: 1/8/13 10:25 PM

According to this video, a metal cam needs to be in place when using the built in stitches

------
Bernina B330
Feet: 1,2,3,3A,4,5,7,8,10,13,16,18,20, 29,32,35,37,50,64,70,71,82,85,86, 92

truckinsquirtle
truckinsquirtle
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Posts: 6
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In reply to andye <<


Subject: Seems to all be the same except Date: 1/8/13 10:57 PM

I checked the Cam, and its the same one as in the video. Has white and green lines tried changing that around and straight stitch still. Saw another vid where the guy said change the little plate around.. Doesnt work.

I'm not sure if I'm doing this wrong (havent sewn in years), but when I do try and sew the fabric doesnt move like it does in the video you linked for me. It seems to bind up and the cotton from the needle gets stuck in the bobbin underneath thru the little groove thing. (sorry I'm not very technical with names it has little ripples on it like teeth if that helps). That groove moves up and down with the needle, unless I turn this other switch that has a U on it then that groove drops lower into the machine?

ShantiSeamstressing
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ShantiSeamstressing
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Member since 6/11/10
Posts: 1577
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In reply to truckinsquirtle <<


Date: 1/8/13 11:11 PM

Quote: truckinsquirtle
I checked the Cam, and its the same one as in the video. Has white and green lines tried changing that around and straight stitch still. Saw another vid where the guy said change the little plate around.. Doesnt work.



I'm not sure if I'm doing this wrong (havent sewn in years), but when I do try and sew the fabric doesnt move like it does in the video you linked for me. It seems to bind up and the cotton from the needle gets stuck in the bobbin underneath thru the little groove thing. (sorry I'm not very technical with names it has little ripples on it like teeth if that helps). That groove moves up and down with the needle, unless I turn this other switch that has a U on it then that groove drops lower into the machine?

Oh, that little groove with ripples like teeth is the feed dog. You would want to "drop" the feed dogs down only for something like free motion embroidery or darning. Ordinarily, you want them up, as they move your fabric through for you. (Be sure you aren't "pulling" or "pushing" it through - just let them do that for you.)

My first thoughts are - - has the machine had a good cleaning and an oiling? You'd be so surprised at what a world of difference that can make. I would try that first.

Next, be sure you have it threaded absolutely perfectly. Again, it amazes me to this day (and I've been sewing 15 years) how doing even one part of the threading process wrong will throw the whole thing off-kilter and it just balks or simply won't sew at all. And, be sure your bobbin is threaded properly, in the right direction, and inserted properly.

Then, make sure you have a nice, new, sharp needle that matches the type of fabric you're using, and be sure thread is appropriate, too. I tend to use Guterman nowdays, and used Coats and Clark always before that. Another good thread is Metrosene. I'm mentioning these because they seem to be commonly available online, in catalogs, and at places like Joann's. They're good quality. Avoid those 5 spools for a $1 type of "deals."

What kind of fabric were you using, that was pulling into the feed dogs/throat plate, by the way? Had you begun sewing with the needle in the fabric first? Did you hold the thread ends for 2 or 3 stitches as your stitching line got underway? Those thoughts also occur to me.

good luck and do please keep us posted! There is a lot of happy sewing just ahead I'm sure!
-- Edited on 1/8/13 11:27 PM --
truckinsquirtle
truckinsquirtle
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Posts: 6
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In reply to ShantiSeamstressing <<


Date: 1/8/13 11:34 PM

I have tried both ways good to know that they're supposed to be up (and thanks for the name).
I'm not sure when the last time it was cleaned. A nice old lady gave it to me to give me something to do while I recover. My hubby sprayed it with some lubricant in the motor and lubricated it?
I've forgotten how to thread the machines properly. My mom said she'd come over and have a look tomorrow but im trying to figure it out now cuz i want to try it :P
the bobbin went click.. online lookup said it has to go click with the little lever pointing up?
The thread says Coats All purpose dual duty plus. The fabric is a old sheet i wanted to practice on. I believe 100%cotton. I didnt start with the needle in the fabric just put the foot down and pushed the pedal. I should try that. I try to hold the threads at the back but sometimes they escape and disappear into the feed dog. then it gets more jammed and i have to take it apart..

one things for sure.. I know how to take apart just about every part of the bobbin case and holder thing now :P

Thanks for the tips. I shall go try that after dinner and see if it changes anything.

beauturbo
beauturbo
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CA USA
Member since 5/2/09
Posts: 2815
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Date: 1/9/13 2:41 AM

I think you really need this:

http://www.managemylife.com/mmh/owner_manuals/46821/KENMORE-Mechanical-Sewing-L1005341?brand_name_search=158.17572+

truckinsquirtle
truckinsquirtle
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Posts: 6
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In reply to beauturbo <<
thumbsup 1 member likes this.


Date: 1/9/13 12:58 PM

You're a lifesaver! Thank you so much.

Now I can figure it all out and start my little project

You guys are the best ! Thanks for all the helpful tips. I'm glad I found this site :)

ShantiSeamstressing
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ShantiSeamstressing
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Member since 6/11/10
Posts: 1577
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In reply to truckinsquirtle <<
thumbsup 2 members like this.


Date: 1/9/13 5:21 PM

Quote: truckinsquirtle
I'm glad I found this site :)

Agreed! PR is my favorite site on the whole world wide web. I'm happy for you that you found it, too.
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