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Show Me Your Backside Of Holsters Sewn With Boss

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particle   

Okay - I got my Boss, have practiced a bunch with it - at least to the point of using the entire sample bobbin that shipped with the machine, and even made a quick sheath for my round knife. I'm using the standard leather needle and thread that was included with the machine, which I believe is 277.

Last night I attempted to sew my first holster with it. It's obvious I needed a little more practice... One thing I quickly found was that I needed to plan the direction I sew better as the heel of the foot dug into the leather pretty severely where it wasn't flat (was sewing an avenger style). I also think I need to use the overstitch wheel to mark my stitch locations so I can plan a little better for corners and such. Plus, this will allow me to possibly run the wheel over the back side of the leather to round up the stitches and make it look a little cleaner... Some places it looked like the bobbin thread wasn't being pulled up into the leather, while other places (and my practice pieces sewn in the scraps from when I cut out the holster pieces - same leather) looked just fine. One stitch actually skipped as I turned a corner - I ended up pulling all the thread and sewed the opposite direction through the same holes.

Anyway, I'm curious to see what some other holster maker's backside (of their holsters....) looks like for comparison. Maybe since I've been hand sewing I'm expecting too much, but I still think it should look a little better than it currently does. I'll try to post pics tonight. Please show me yours if it was sewn on a Boss.

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Denster   

Just a couple of tips. When closing an envelope style holster it really helps to have a left presser foot and I start my stitchline at the bottom outside edge go all the way around the perimeter and profile of the gun back to the beginning and oversew three or four stitches. There will still be a couple of marks but they will come out easily generally during the molding stage. Nothing like what you have with the standard presser foot.

On going around corners. With rounded corners after awhile you get the feel for the timing and can nudge it around during stitching. On sharp turns at the last stitch before the turn run the needle all the way to the bottom then raise about 1/2" squeeze your presser foot lever just enough to release the leather and turn so you're headed in the right direction release the presser foot and raise the lever all they way up.

With the Boss it is important never to short stroke it. All the way down all the way up. This is impeded if youn have a death grip on the handle. Just gently hold it in the ball of your hand.

I use 346 top and 277 bottom as I like a plump stitch and I stitch at 5spi.

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Denster   

A couple more thoughts. An occasional missed stitch can be related to two things. First is not having the needle flat directly facing the throat of the machine if that checks out try turning the needle flat about 2 degrees towards you. The second thing is using an undersize needle. I sew with 346 top and the recommended needle is a 230 but I use a 200 which is in the gray area. I like the smaller holes but I know I'm going to skip two or three stitches per holster. No problem just raise the presser foot back up to the empty hole and continue.

On having a couple of stitches that don't pull the lock into the leather. Generally related to a slightly short stroke on the upswing. Another possibility is an unevenly wound bobbin. All of a sudden the bobbin thread has to clear a hump and it adds a little extra bobbin tension an the result is a lock that isn't pulled into the leather. Sometimes happens for no apparent reason and if you only have a couple take a blunt awl and push the lock below the surface.

As to tension. With the heavier thread I only go through one hole on the first guide. I start out with two full turns from zero on the secondary tensioner and 1&1/2 turns on the primary tensioner. Run a test strip and fine tune with the primary tensioner. I have the bobbin tension set at one pound pull through. I just use a trigger pull guage I happened to have handy.

I'll have a better idea what is going on when you post the picks of the back side.

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particle   

Thanks Denster for the thoughtful response. Do you ever find that you have to press the lever forward again to pull the thread up tight and away from the needle? I try really hard to make sure I'm pressing the lever all the way forward until it stops (I even sew very slow to be deliberate about needle placement, strokes, etc.), then when I start to make the next stitch hole, the needle is about to penetrate the thread that wasn't pulled completely out of the way - so I have to press the lever back forward again to pull the thread tighter. Kinda annoying... I pushed the lever all the way forward (firmly) and tried to wiggle the thread take-up arm, but it didn't move, so I assume it's adjusted correctly.

Without a trigger pull gauge, any tips on other ways to check the bobbin tension? Seems like with another sewing machine I've used in the past, you held onto the thread and dropped the bobbin carrier. It should slip a little, but stop under it's own tension. I realize the Boss bobbin design is different and you can't set it this way.

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Denster   

Thanks Denster for the thoughtful response. Do you ever find that you have to press the lever forward again to pull the thread up tight and away from the needle? I try really hard to make sure I'm pressing the lever all the way forward until it stops (I even sew very slow to be deliberate about needle placement, strokes, etc.), then when I start to make the next stitch hole, the needle is about to penetrate the thread that wasn't pulled completely out of the way - so I have to press the lever back forward again to pull the thread tighter. Kinda annoying... I pushed the lever all the way forward (firmly) and tried to wiggle the thread take-up arm, but it didn't move, so I assume it's adjusted correctly.

Without a trigger pull gauge, any tips on other ways to check the bobbin tension? Seems like with another sewing machine I've used in the past, you held onto the thread and dropped the bobbin carrier. It should slip a little, but stop under it's own tension. I realize the Boss bobbin design is different and you can't set it this way.

OK! On the bobbin tension you can do it by feel it's not a precise thing anyway. With the bobbin thread up through the needle plate pull on it and it should flow freely with slight resistance. The other problem is related to presser foot pressure it needs to tightened up some as the leather is being pulled forward a bit when the stitch pulls into the leather. This reults in a little thread slack which is annoying. With the standard presser foot on two peices of 8OZ vegtan I have about 4 threads showing above the machine on the presser foot adjuster. The sliker and firmer the leather the more pressure is needed. I finished up sewing some hard jacked 8OZ horsehide last week and talk about annoying I had the presser foot cranked all the was down and still had to add some resistance on the upstroke to get nice even stitches and no loops.

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particle   

Thanks - I'll increase the presser foot pressure tonight - probably lowered it too much to minimize the tracks left behind. I noticed my stitch length was slightly irregular - this is probably why.

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Denster   

Thanks - I'll increase the presser foot pressure tonight - probably lowered it too much to minimize the tracks left behind. I noticed my stitch length was slightly irregular - this is probably why.

I went through the same thinking when I first started sewing with a Boss. I got over worrying about the marks when I found out how easy they come out. The leather you are using has a lot to do with it also. With some of the imported shoulders I use ,while good leather, the marks are really prevalent. With Hermann Oak hardly any marks at all. Has to do with the general temper of the leather I guess.

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particle   

Okay - I didn't get around to taking any photos of the stitches, but I sewed on a few more holsters that I started on last weekend. I think the bobbin tension was WAY too tight. I loosened it quite a bit, increased the presser foot pressure, and tightened the main tension a tad. Seems to be working much better now.

Question - did Tippmann stop putting the thread guide on that's mounted to the left side of the casting - the last guide right before the thread goes down through the needle bar? Mine doesn't have one, and it's not shown on the current schematic on the Tippmann site - if I put my finger gently in the groove to put slight tension on the thread, I don't have the looping problem where the needle tries to penetrate the thread forcing me to push the stitching handle forward again to take up the slack.

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JeffGC   

I've been following this thread (bad pun!) with considerable interest since I've had my Boss for about a week. I have hand stitched for years and I also notice the difference in the appearance of the stitching on the reverse side.

I also found the bobbin tension from the factory far too high. This resulted in my turning the needle thread tension way to high, attempting to pull the bobbin thread up into the leather. Then, the leather was being slightly torn at the needle holes. Following the advice in this thread, I adjusted the bobbin thread to give slight resistance when pulled through the needle plate and then adjusted the tension knobs as suggested by Denster. The quality of the stitching greatly improved.

I have learned that they (Tippmann) do not use 277 in their pre-wound bobbins; it's thinner.

Is it possible to have too light of tension?

What style of needle are you using? I believe they come with pointed but I'm wondering if I should try a chisel needle.

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particle   
What style of needle are you using? I believe they come with pointed but I'm wondering if I should try a chisel needle.

You should have gotten both pointed and chisel. I'm using chisel in mine. I was wondering about the bobbin thread too - it did seem different than the large spool of thread that was included.

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Denster   

To Particle: Yes Tippman ceased putting that thread guide on their machines. It was useless anyway as the thread ran in a notch in the casting and the guide didn't contact the thread at all. It gave me problems as I always pull out about 8 inches of top thread when I remove the peice from the machine and take it out only against the resistance of the bobbin thread. Yes this pulls the loop out on the last stitch on the bottom. I grab the top thread and pull it back in and grab both threads and snug it then trim. Anyway doing this the thread would sometimes come out of the guide and run over it screwing up the first few stitches on the next peice until I noticed it so I took it off and things run fine.

The chisel point needles work better, in my opinion, with the heavier leather we are using with holsters.

Within reason the lighter you can go on tension the better your stitches, particularly the back stitches will look. Using heavier thread and 4&1/2 to 5 spi improves things also.

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Denster   

Okay - I didn't get around to taking any photos of the stitches, but I sewed on a few more holsters that I started on last weekend. I think the bobbin tension was WAY too tight. I loosened it quite a bit, increased the presser foot pressure, and tightened the main tension a tad. Seems to be working much better now.

Question - did Tippmann stop putting the thread guide on that's mounted to the left side of the casting - the last guide right before the thread goes down through the needle bar? Mine doesn't have one, and it's not shown on the current schematic on the Tippmann site - if I put my finger gently in the groove to put slight tension on the thread, I don't have the looping problem where the needle tries to penetrate the thread forcing me to push the stitching handle forward again to take up the slack.

Particle. Are you still having a problem with that thread looping? What size needle are you using. 277 calls for a 200 size needle although with poly I use a 180. If the other fixes I suggested didn't work that is the last thing I can think of. It shouldn't be doing that. Except for maybe one other thing just comes to mind. When threading the machine you do make a full loop around both the primary and secondary tensioners don't you. The reason I ask is in some of the Tippmann instructions they show just bringing it in the back side of the secondary without making a full turn. That works OK for heavy thread like 416 as does the suggestion of only going through one hole in the first thread guide but with 277 is not necessary or desireable.

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particle   

Particle. Are you still having a problem with that thread looping? What size needle are you using. 277 calls for a 200 size needle although with poly I use a 180. If the other fixes I suggested didn't work that is the last thing I can think of. It shouldn't be doing that. Except for maybe one other thing just comes to mind. When threading the machine you do make a full loop around both the primary and secondary tensioners don't you. The reason I ask is in some of the Tippmann instructions they show just bringing it in the back side of the secondary without making a full turn. That works OK for heavy thread like 416 as does the suggestion of only going through one hole in the first thread guide but with 277 is not necessary or desireable.

Yes - still having the looping problem. Can't say what needle I'm using at the moment, but it's whatever it came with out of the box. But, I did order a 10 pack of 794 Size 200 needles along with a few different colors of 277 thread from the Tippmann site.

Yes - both the primary and secondary have a full loop around them. I pulled the manual out last night and read it to make sure - the graphic doesn't look like they indicate a full loop on the secondary tensioner (not when compared to the graphic for the primary tensioner). But, I read the text instructions, and it actually says to go completely around the secondary tensioner. So, that's what I did (and was already doing).

I think I may shoot a video, post it on my website, then send a link to Tippmann (and this thread too).

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Denster   

Yes - still having the looping problem. Can't say what needle I'm using at the moment, but it's whatever it came with out of the box. But, I did order a 10 pack of 794 Size 200 needles along with a few different colors of 277 thread from the Tippmann site.

Yes - both the primary and secondary have a full loop around them. I pulled the manual out last night and read it to make sure - the graphic doesn't look like they indicate a full loop on the secondary tensioner (not when compared to the graphic for the primary tensioner). But, I read the text instructions, and it actually says to go completely around the secondary tensioner. So, that's what I did (and was already doing).

I think I may shoot a video, post it on my website, then send a link to Tippmann (and this thread too).

Aha! We may have the problem located. I'm going to guess that is a 230 or larger needle. If you use a magnifying glass you can read the inscription on the side of the needle to determine the size. Did you get a selection of needles with the machine?

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JeffGC   

I spoke with Ben at Tippmann earlier this week regarding the wrap on the primary tensioner. Wrap completely around it (360 degrees).

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Denster   

I spoke with Ben at Tippmann earlier this week regarding the wrap on the primary tensioner. Wrap completely around it (360 degrees).

Actually 360 around both tensioners for almost all applications, but always 360 around the primary which is the last one. The trick of just comming in the back side of the secondary (first one) is only usefull with the heaviest threads 416 and I think 512 that is not lubed due to the excess friction of the large diameter threads.

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particle   

Aha! We may have the problem located. I'm going to guess that is a 230 or larger needle. If you use a magnifying glass you can read the inscription on the side of the needle to determine the size. Did you get a selection of needles with the machine?

I'll look tonight - not sure if the leather needles came in two sizes, or just one. My 10-pack will be here in a couple days - just shipped yesterday as they were back ordered.

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Dwight   

I had a lot of problems getting the sewing to look how I wanted it to, . . . and a fellow (whose name escapes me) from here gave me his phone number, . . . we talked for about an hour on my nickel, . . . and he walked me through a couple of answers that made most of the difference in my stitches.

First, . . . lose the round needles, . . . use them for vinyl or fabric or hat pins, . . . but don't try to sew holsters with them.

Second, . . . as you round the corners, slowly turn the leather as you are doing the stitch, . . . and plan your route so that you don't have issues with the holster being all bunched up in the middle of the machine.

I use only 340 thread, top and bottom, as well as for the CCW belts I make also. Makes it easy to figure which one to put on next, . . . and what is in the bobbin.

I set my top tension so it will pull the thread all the way to the top of two scraps of leather I am sewing, . . . then slowly tighten up the bobbin tension (usually a half turn at a time) until it pulls it halfway down in the piece. I like my stitching to be tight, and I very often use a stitch gouging tool on both sides, . . . then use a special rubbing tool I made when it is finished, . . . dampen the leather at the stitches and rub the thread down even with or below the surface.

Don't use a stitching wheel with your Boss, . . . adjust the stitch length with the adjuster in the front of the machine, . . . once you get it where you want it, . . . remove the adjuster and put cardboard spacers behind it so you can lock it down from vibrating loose. Then just let the machine make the stitch lengths for you.

Hope this helps.

May God bless,

Dwight

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particle   

Aha! We may have the problem located. I'm going to guess that is a 230 or larger needle. If you use a magnifying glass you can read the inscription on the side of the needle to determine the size. Did you get a selection of needles with the machine?

Okay - I figured it out. I was flipping through the manual and took a look at the schematic diagram. I noticed the thread take-up lever had an adjustable screw with a spring tensioner on it. I popped the back cover off and tightened the screw a bit, and not I'm not getting the thread loop problem anymore. :) Afterward I sewed on another holster and it worked fine. I guess it was dropping back down just a bit under its own weight after the stitching lever is retracted, so tightening the screw a bit helps it to maintain tension as the lever is moved.

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Denster   

Glad you got it resolved. That's something I hadn't thought of. Goes on the notepage just in case. By the way really neat website.

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JeffGC   

This forum is a wonderful resource but don't forget about the outstanding technical support from Tippmann. I was having the same problems; i.e., loop forming at the tip of the needle and also occasionally missing a stitch. Ben immediately addressed tightening the tensioner screw on the thread takeup lever.

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Denster   

This forum is a wonderful resource but don't forget about the outstanding technical support from Tippmann. I was having the same problems; i.e., loop forming at the tip of the needle and also occasionally missing a stitch. Ben immediately addressed tightening the tensioner screw on the thread takeup lever.

Amen to that. I've had excellent and courteous service whenever I've called Tippmann.

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particle   

Glad you got it resolved. That's something I hadn't thought of. Goes on the notepage just in case. By the way really neat website.

Thanks for the compliments on the website. It's not 100% yet, but getting close. Want to add more details to the individual model pages with more options (maybe....), maybe shoot a video of me building a holster (since they seem to be hard to find on the net), process photos, etc. Most of all, thanks for all your help with the Boss stitches. I really appreciate it.

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JeffGC   

What is the part number of the adjustable screw on the thread takeup lever?

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particle   

What is the part number of the adjustable screw on the thread takeup lever?

HS 98-3 (see attached)

hs_98-3.jpg

post-6400-126530156385_thumb.jpg

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