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About gottaknow

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  • Birthday February 12

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    Washington State
  • Interests
    Art, music, sewing, photography, gardening

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  • Leatherwork Specialty
    Industrial sewing machines since 1980, Facilities and Maintenance Mgr at Outdoor Research
  • Interested in learning about
    ironicly, hand sewing, leather carving and stamping
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  1. Singer 2281B362

    Common machine in apparel factories in the 60's on up. Needle feed with ability to adjust stitch length independently between needle bar and feed dogs. This was to adjust for ply shift in flimsy fabrics. True workhorse for medium weight fabric. Will also handle nylon quite well. T60 thread with a 16 needle is pretty average. Regards, Eric
  2. Singer 153W 100 Jammed

    For some reason, people that make after market parts seem to think they know more than the engineers that designed and built the machines. I'll never understand it, but it always rears its ugly head when least expected. Glad you figured it out! Regards, Eric
  3. Tennessee Attachment will rubberize any feed dog. They do decent work. Regards, Eric
  4. Singer industrial machine model 281-24

    Aside from all the oiling requirements that Wiz addressed, the 281-24 is primarily for woven fabric. It's a compound feed which means the needle bar moves front to back with the feed dogs to move the material through. It sews flimsy nylon and polyester to medium weights. Wiz is right about the stitch length on leather, you'll likely get tearing. That's not to say the machine isn't useful. We used 100's of the 281 series to sew nylon baffles together to make down jackets and vests. It's best feature is there are two stitch length mechanisms. One is for the needle bar stroke, the second for the feed dogs. You can actually set the feed dogs to move slower than the needle bar in order to prevent ply shift in flimsy material. Really handy for production sewing. They are meant to sew at high speed, and they will fly. It was the first series of machines I worked on back in 1980, so I have a fondness for them. The 281 class covers a wide array of machines, basically using the same casting. There are some 281's that are drop feed only, the needle bar moves straight up and down and the feed dogs move the material. Not so great on slippery fabric, great on cotton. the 281-30 has a close couple puller that sits directly behind the presser foot. It is really useful for setting binding on lightweight material. It is a drop feed machine so the binding folder can sit really close to the needle. It came standard with a binding foot, feed dog, and a throat plate that included the folder mount. Keeping with the dual stitch length feature of the 281's, the stitch length adjustment that controls the needle bar actually controls the speed of the puller. Some of the nicest looking lightweight binding I've ever seen came off a 281-30. They are still used to run binding without setting it on material and simply making hangar loops for shirts and jackets. Regards, Eric
  5. Single needle chains stitch machines don't backtack in a way that lockstitch machines do. It's a basting stitch designed for pre-assembly of component parts. The stitch is easily unchained and removed by pulling the thread where the stitch ended. The beginning of the stitching will not come out. It is simply for joining materials that are sewn over, or bartacked later in the process. All it has to do is not unchain until the next operation. The easiest way to do this is to "chain off" a little extra which makes it harder to unchain. ALL chainstitch sewing must be secured at the end of the stitch. For a joining stitch, in the case af a single needle chain, you'll never get the tension tight enough to make a secure seam. Anywhere along the seam, if the single thread is cut or abraided, it will unravel. All chain stitch types are the same way, including two thread machines, cover stitch, overlock, blindstitch, chain stitch button hole machines (there are lockstitch button hole machines), line tackers (Reece S2 class), blanket stitch, basically any machine that doesn't have a bobbin. In a circular operation such a hemming pants with a blind stitch, you simply overlap at least an inch. All that said, the single needle chain machine is very useful in a limited scope of applications. In custom sewing for example, you can quickly sew together a dress, do a fitting, and quickly make adjustments then re-sew inside the seam allowance with a lockstitch. The basting stitch is quickly removed after final sewing. As a side note, you can preconstruct something using a lockstitch machine by loosening the bobbin tension until the needle thread is laying on top of the material so it can easily removed. Regards, Eric
  6. I can't tell if your looper is bad from the angle of your picture. Of course the definitive test is to compare it to a new one. They don't usually bend because of the hardening, they just break. As for the tension, try removing any extra wraps like at the post on top of the head. There are no hard and fast rules for all the thread guides. You use what the thread and sewing conditions require. As I said before, on these types of machines, tension is your main adjustments. It appears to be threaded right, but check any reference you may have. Don't be afraid to try different thread paths. It also appears your thread is too heavy for your test fabric. That will cause gathering. Regards, Eric
  7. Redneck ingenuity

    Let's face it, any forum on the net will have different personalities. This particular forum has a very wide range, including a lot of international members whose nuances and phrasing is very different. My advice is to always put on your grown up pants and take everything with a grain of salt. When you post in an open forum, you are inviting responses from a wide variety of folks and I personally appreciate all points of view. I have been training mechanics for over 30 years and I start each apprentice with the same opening statement. "The journey you are beginning is a long, arduous process. It won't be pleasant at times and you will make many mistakes, some will be expensive. The main thing you will learn is not so much turning screwdrivers. Monkeys can turn screwdrivers. I will however teach you how to think as it relates to sewing machines. I will bore you with theory, a step at a time building on what you've learned. I expect mistakes as it's part of the training. I will correct, criticize and repeat this process thousands of times until you learn how to think as it relates to machines. In the end, you can either go through this process and reap the financial rewards as I have, or quit and do something else." I've had far more trainees quit than to complete the 5 year apprenticeship. I had to go through this and there were many days I wanted to quit. I was driven to succeed because the man who trained me was 10 times harsher than anything I've seen here in this forum and I wasn't about to let him get to me. I eventually took his job. Most folks come here to learn about things they don't know about. Realizing there may have been a better method is a lesson and will only benefit a person down the road. After 38 years of machine repair, I'm still learning. Learning comes in many forms, you just have to glean what's useful. Don't let the different personalities be a hinderence to the learning process. Regards, Eric
  8. If that is the true shape of your looper, it's bad. The face of the looper should be flat and parallel with the needle scarf. People that don't understand how chain stitch machines work, will often damage loopers. There is virtually no reason to modify the shape of any looper, but especially one on a single thread machine. It is the shape of the looper that determines how long the looper keeps the triangle open so the needle can descend down through it. If the looper has been ground or reshaped in any manner, the machine will skip or not sew at all, no matter how you set anything else. It's easy to change needle length on this class of machine without changing anything but the needle bar height. You rotate the looper until the point is dead center on the needle, hold that position, insert the different needle, and move the needle bar until the looper is in the same spot. The machine doesn't care how long your needle is as long as you don't change the rotational timing of the looper. As for tension, the tighter the tension, the smaller the thread loop, looser it gets bigger. That makes it necessary to make tension adjustments when you use different thread. Also, when you turn the machine by hand, your loop size will be bigger than when you sew under power. Without question, the most common adjustment on this class of machine is the thread tension. Have fun! Regards, Eric
  9. I only use grease on the feed cam and fork. I oil the rest of the machine. Rotating gears throw grease everywhere, well at the much higher speeds used in factories at least. No reason you couldn't though. Regards, Eric
  10. This is a common issue on these machines. The cam on the shaft is harder steel than the fork, so that's where the wear ends up. The forks are easily replaced and are inexpensive. I don't depend on oil/felt. I use TriFlow grease, which comes in a tube. Stays lubed a long time. It's not that hard to replace the cam, but start with the fork. Regards, Eric
  11. Greetings Bert, I'm attaching a simple description of the cycle of a single thread chain stitch with a rotary hook. It's a simple stitch formation, but different than what most people encounter. I watched your video and I believe I see the looper hitting the needle. Make sure the looper is as close as it can be without deflecting the needle. Also, make sure the hook point is entering in the middle of the needle scarf. You may need to adjust your needle bar height to accomplish that. Have fun! Regards, Eric
  12. Using My Reece 101 On Garment Grade Leather

    Turned out great. You're a brave man for taking on that Reece 101. Regards, Eric
  13. Full Function Cylinder Machine

    I would try a different Juki dealer. They have a lot of wiggle room on their mark-ups. You will go broke buying Pfaff parts. Regards, Eric
  14. Singer 111W155 Rehab

    Yep. Regards, Eric
  15. Clicker die needed

    Nicely done Brian. Regards, Eric