Fixing thread breaks

It can be discouraging for the upper thread on your sewing machine to keep breaking free and it can be tedious to rethread and fix it. Here Jas Purba, managing director of ETC Supplies, explores the reasons why and how to fix it.

There are a few reasons that could be causing the breakage. If you are asking yourself, ‘why does my thread keep breaking?’ then here are some tips for you.

  • Inspect the needle. The eye of the needle should be facing straight on, or slightly right, but never to the left.
  • You also need to ensure that the correct side of the needle is facing the front of the machine. On one side of the needle is a long groove that starts from the eye of the needle and goes along the shaft, up to the part where the needle starts to widen out. The groove that runs from the eye up to the widest part of the needle must face towards the front of the machine. This will ensure the scarf is facing the rear, which is the correct positioning.
  • If your needle is inserted correctly, inspect the ratio of upper thread and bobbin thread on the back of the design sewn out. If there is an uneven balance of upper thread to bobbin thread, there your thread breaks may be caused by tension issues. In general, the higher the number on the dial represents a tighter tension, or pull, for the thread.
  • Your upper thread could also be breaking because of the bobbin. The bobbin should be placed correctly in the case – don’t forget to inspect the bobbin case and ensure it is clean and not damaged. Next check the tension. A range of bobbin tension is acceptable. As you gently bounce the bobbin case – holding the thread with your hand – it should drop approximately 2-4 inches/ 50-100 mm. Adjust the bobbin tensionif it is outside of this range.
  • Finally, don’t forget to check your hook timing. Hook timing is the relationship of the hook tip and the needle eye. In order to check the hook timing, it is important to see which direction your hook rotates as the needle is in its upward ascent. If your hook is turning clockwise, such as with most oscillating hooks, you will want to adjust your needle position to the far right. If your hook tip is passing through or below the needle eye, then the timing of the sewing machine is off. On the other hand, if the hook tip is passing above the needle eye, but extends past the needle more than a couple of millimetres when the needle eye meets the radius of the hook, then the timing is also off and will need corrected.

I hope these tips help to solve some common issues you may be facing.  If you’re still stuck, please reach out to us.

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