RawhideLeather

Leather Lifts Up With Needle - Need Help - At Wits End!

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Howdy all, this post relates to the other post I just made to this forum concerning timing my machine. I have been doing things pretty much the same way for years but now I'm having constant trouble with the leather I'm sewing rising up with the needle and causing skipped stitches and other problems. The fact that the needles have been getting dried glue on them would indicate that the glue hasn't completely dried yet so I'm guessing that maybe my shop is too cold and that I need to give the glue longer drying time (I have been waiting a couple of days before stitching after gluing which would seem long enough to me even in cold weather). I didn't have that problem last winter and it was colder if anything. I have increased the foot pressure to the maximum to no avail. Tried new needles. I also tried lubing the thread which is getting kind of old now with liquid glycerine leather soap but it didn't help much. Tried resetting the timing even but I'm not certain that it is correct because the instructions in the manual they sent with the machine doesn't make any sense to me.

Here is some more info:

Machine - Artisan Toro 3000

Leather being stitched - 3 glued layers of W&C 12 oz. skirting that has been holstered (factory compressed) and is about 9/16" thickness

Thread - Linhanyll nylon 346/277

Glue - Duall #88 all purpose cement

Needle system - Schmetz 794D NM:200 Size: 25

I have been using all of the above successfully for some time except for the holstered leather part which is more recent. I tried stitching with no thread and it does the same thing. I tried stitching on a piece of same leather and thickness with no glue and it did the same thing! Just not as often which makes me wonder about the problem being the glue. Thinner 3/8" unglued pieces stitch with no problems except the stitching gets slightly smaller the longer the stitch line is. Not much of this makes any logical sense to me. Any ideas anyone?

Edited by RawhideLeather

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When i get a piece of sticky leather like your talking about. I sew with no thread and go back and sew with thread. It's not something i like to do but it's better than having to pick stitches out or messing something up. When i glue in the winter espically i use a hair dryer to dry the glue. Because sometimes when the glue hasn't dried all the way it will mess things up as far as sewing. If you get a wax pot and put your lube in it that will help to.

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Thanks for the reply dirtclod. Workable idea but the leather sticks to the needle even without thread. I use the hair dryer trick myself to speed up drying before assembly. I need to figure this out because this is my living and the only type of stitching that I do so I can't be stitching first without thread all the time. It used to work for me, it should now if I can figure out the problem. I do use thread lube but haven't tried the silicone yet. Any other ideas?

When i get a piece of sticky leather like your talking about. I sew with no thread and go back and sew with thread. It's not something i like to do but it's better than having to pick stitches out or messing something up. When i glue in the winter espically i use a hair dryer to dry the glue. Because sometimes when the glue hasn't dried all the way it will mess things up as far as sewing. If you get a wax pot and put your lube in it that will help to.

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Try using a #26 leather point needle. #25 is minimal for 346 thread and this leather requires a bigger hole.

Crank the top pressure spring all the way down.

If you have a wide presser foot set, change to it. The wider the feet, the more pressure they exert per square inch.

Until you get a lube pot and liquid silicon, buy a can of silicon spray and spray it on the needle as you sew.

Some leather is so dry and dense that you have to sew it while it is wet. Try moistening the flesh sides and bottom before gluing them together.

Stainless steel feet and throat plates are made for wet sewing. Call Bob Kovar (866-362-7397) about getting a set of his stainless feet and a throat plate.

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Hi Wizcrafts,

Like I mentioned, the leather goes up without any thread in the needle so needle size shouldn't be the main issue I wouldn't think but I will give that a try if I still have problems later on.

Pressure is cranked down to the limit and I even added a thick washer under the spring to gain more pressure.

I'm using a wide foot.

Good idea about using the spray temporarily.

Don't think I want to try and sew damp leather as it would leave to many unwanted marks that I couldn't get rid of.

I was thinking that maybe the thread is old enough to have lost some of it's bonding and maybe that could also be one of the problems. The spool is probably several years old by now even though I tried to keep it sprayed down with liquid glycerin leather soap. Think I'll buy some new thread which leads me to another question. Where can I find Schmetz needles and nylon thread from the same place (besides Artisan - they don't seem to have my size)?

Thanks for your help. If anyone has any other insights please let me know.

Try using a #26 leather point needle. #25 is minimal for 346 thread and this leather requires a bigger hole.

Crank the top pressure spring all the way down.

If you have a wide presser foot set, change to it. The wider the feet, the more pressure they exert per square inch.

Until you get a lube pot and liquid silicon, buy a can of silicon spray and spray it on the needle as you sew.

Some leather is so dry and dense that you have to sew it while it is wet. Try moistening the flesh sides and bottom before gluing them together.

Stainless steel feet and throat plates are made for wet sewing. Call Bob Kovar (866-362-7397) about getting a set of his stainless feet and a throat plate.

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Hi Wizcrafts,

Like I mentioned, the leather goes up without any thread in the needle so needle size shouldn't be the main issue I wouldn't think but I will give that a try if I still have problems later on.

Pressure is cranked down to the limit and I even added a thick washer under the spring to gain more pressure.

I'm using a wide foot.

Good idea about using the spray temporarily.

Don't think I want to try and sew damp leather as it would leave to many unwanted marks that I couldn't get rid of.

I was thinking that maybe the thread is old enough to have lost some of it's bonding and maybe that could also be one of the problems. The spool is probably several years old by now even though I tried to keep it sprayed down with liquid glycerin leather soap. Think I'll buy some new thread which leads me to another question. Where can I find Schmetz needles and nylon thread from the same place (besides Artisan - they don't seem to have my size)?

Thanks for your help. If anyone has any other insights please let me know.

Here's a thought about the old thread. Get a large enough container to hold the spool of thread. Get some clear sewing machine oil, or a couple quarts of liquid silicon and immerse the thread in the lubricant until it has thoroughly absorbed it into the windings. Remove the lube from the container and let the spool drip dry. When the dripping stops, wipe it down with a few paper towels, thread it into the machine, and see if this helps alleviate the sticking needle problem. The thread will carry the oil or silicon to the needle, which delivers it to the dry leather.

Toledo Industrial Sewing Machines has Schmetz needles and nylon thread. They now carry their own brand of pre-lubricated Cowboy thread.

Edited by Wizcrafts

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If there is glue on your needle, I don't think your glue is dry and the leather is comeing apart just enough to grab the needle. I have this problem when I have three layers of leather that I've dampened and tacked together (no glue). I think the layers kind of go their separate ways and the dampness for some reason makes the leather grippy and it will pull the needle right out of the needle bar.

If I don't get to sew 'til the next day, no problem, well, that's one of my experiences.

Good luck,

Kevin

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Here's my two cents. I was having the same problem sewing saddle skirts. I went down to Ralph's industrial sewing machines and talked to a service tech and to Jack a salesman. They told me to increase foot pressure, let glue dry all the way, lubricate the needle with liquid silicon, which they sell there and to sew slowly. There thinking was that when the needle heats up it grabs more at the glue. I have also noticed that I had more trouble with Barge. After trying all these I quit having problems. Hope that helps.

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Thanks Wiz, I would have never thought to do that with the thread, just might work till I can get some more in. I also appreciate the link for the thread and needles. I hate having to order one thing here and another there if I can avoid it. I hope their thread is good quality, I do like the straw color. Will order some tomorrow along with the larger needles, this leather is fairly dense. Thanks again.

Kevin, I agree, when working with leather this thick and dense things can happen that don't normally happen. I appreciate your input.

Defenestrator, thanks for the suggestions. All sound advice. Heat isn't a factor in my case though as it even happens with a cold needle ran through slowly by the handwheel on the first or second stitch. Question, how do you manage to lube the needle? Do you just spray some on by hand as it is stitching?

I also think I will fabricate a box with a small light bulb to put my work in after gluing so that the glue will dry faster in my cold shop. Should help some I would think.

Richard

Edited by RawhideLeather

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I never have tried this but it might work. Fix a piece of sponge next to the needle or fix it where the thread will run through the sponge ( cut a slit in the sponge ) and put the lube on the sponge and see what happens. I sew 4 pieces of 12/14 oz regular. Like the other person said it's no problem to get smoke coming off of a needle and that may very well melt the glue.

Edited by dirtclod

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Richard, My machine has a wax pot on top of the but I don't use that. I bought a small plastic box that has a magnate which sticks to your machine. The thread runs through two holes on ether side towards the top. It has a cotton pad that sets inside, which the thread runs on top over the pad which is saturated with silicon. However, I put the pad on the top of the thread which in my opinion causes more silicon to be on the thread which in turn lubricates the needle. I have noticed that my sewing holes have a small wet ring of silicon after sewing ( which goes away). Hope that helps Scott

cleardot.gif

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Hi all

This is a problem with the Leather not the Machine. Certain types of Leather are stuffed with a Resin that appears as a red/brown crust on the needle when sewing multiple weights of Veg Leather. The first time it happened to me I was sewing approx 5/8" in substance. Sewed about 6 inches and the Leather lifted with the Needle. Tried going one stitch at a time after I cleaned the Needle with Machine Oil. Seemed ok so started going again with the same results. Well it took me an hour and 3 Needles to sew 30 inches, all the time cursing the Scum on the Needle. Changed Leather type, no problems sewed like a dream. Even sewed 3/4" no problems. Went back to the original Leather in 2 weights. Same problem again. Checked with other Saddlers, yep same problem with that Leather. I don't use that Brand any more! Although I have advised others to use a Lubricant Pot with Silicone lubricant in it and a larger Needle size which helps. I finished the Hide by using Mox .8mm Waxed Poly Braid for top and .6mm on the Bobbin. This worked reasonably well but not perfect. My Machine is a Cowboy 441. So my easy answer was to Change Tanners, which actually saved me money as the better Hides were 15% cheaper.

I Hope this is of assistance. to you.

Kindest Regards.

Jim Saddler.

Richard, My machine has a wax pot on top of the but I don't use that. I bought a small plastic box that has a magnate which sticks to your machine. The thread runs through two holes on ether side towards the top. It has a cotton pad that sets inside, which the thread runs on top over the pad which is saturated with silicon. However, I put the pad on the top of the thread which in my opinion causes more silicon to be on the thread which in turn lubricates the needle. I have noticed that my sewing holes have a small wet ring of silicon after sewing ( which goes away). Hope that helps Scott

cleardot.gif

Edited by jimsaddler

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Well, I believe all my stitcher problems have been solved! I finally broke down and called Cobra Steve and after a very short explanation of my many problems he offered to go over my machine himself at no charge! Turns out he was making a trip through Phoenix the very next morning and I live about 180 miles north east of there so we met up in Phoenix and he took my stitcher back to Ca. with him. All it will cost me is return shipping! Unbelievable! Who else in this business would offer to do something like that? Especially for a machine that was not one of his? I've read many times and always maintained myself that Steve Tayrien was a great guy and this absolutely reinforces that impression. WOW!!!

I'll follow up and let you guys know how it stitches when I get it back but I'm sure since Steve is setting it up then it will be just dandy. Thanks again everyone for the help.

Richard

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Well, I believe all my stitcher problems have been solved! I finally broke down and called Cobra Steve and after a very short explanation of my many problems he offered to go over my machine himself at no charge! Turns out he was making a trip through Phoenix the very next morning and I live about 180 miles north east of there so we met up in Phoenix and he took my stitcher back to Ca. with him. All it will cost me is return shipping! Unbelievable! Who else in this business would offer to do something like that? Especially for a machine that was not one of his? I've read many times and always maintained myself that Steve Tayrien was a great guy and this absolutely reinforces that impression. WOW!!!

I'll follow up and let you guys know how it stitches when I get it back but I'm sure since Steve is setting it up then it will be just dandy. Thanks again everyone for the help.

Richard

Awe shucks....it was nothin' Thanks, Richard!

Edited by Cobra Steve

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well, what was the problem??!!

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Old thread I know but I'm having the same problem. I think it's the leather. Some leathers are really "sticky" and others aren't. I think it's a quality issue to be honest.

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I have some of the same issues, it is interesting to find that so many different individuals will have the same or similar problem without a definite answer.  I think I have narrowed some of it down to old thread but not sure that is the sole issue.

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If the leather is lifting the presser foot up, the presser foot spring needs to be tightened down more to overcome the leather sticking to the needle.  Now if there is glue or something else causing the leather to stick to the needle, then of course you should go to the root cause and fix it.

But, if you are sewing heavy stiff leather, heavier and stiffer than what you usually use, you will have to increase the presser foot spring pressure.  Or get soft leather!

Tom

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Threaded needles tend to stick in heavily glued or dense leather. If you have a lube pot on the machine, try adding liquid silicon lube to the top thread as you sew. It works wonders when sewing through leather tape or heavily glued leather. This silicon is sold by most industrial sewing machine dealers, like those who advertise with us.

O&S didn't say what machine he has. But, if titanium coated needles are available for it, they also work better in glued and taped layers.

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I am running a 441 clone with an oil pot and using silicone oil in the pot, yet the same type of issues still occur, and If my recollection serves me right I did a search for titanium needles sometime in the past when the same issue presented itself.  Wiz if you know of a dealer who has the needles in 25 for 277 thread please let us know so that they can be look at for price comparisons.  I have a recent post up that is asking the same type of question with a little different twist to it.  In fact one the most interesting things that I have happening is that when I am sewing 2 layers of 9 oz wicket and craig leather I will actually have some squeaking going on as the needle is going through the leather, this is after it has been glued together using Barges glue after it has dried for at least a day in warm to hot days or put on a forced air boot drier when the ambient temps are low.  It is the weirdest thing to hear and watch.  I have gone in and made sure that everything is clean, well oiled and running like it should be a far as I can tell.   

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2 hours ago, OLDNSLOW said:

I am running a 441 clone with an oil pot and using silicone oil in the pot, yet the same type of issues still occur, and If my recollection serves me right I did a search for titanium needles sometime in the past when the same issue presented itself.  Wiz if you know of a dealer who has the needles in 25 for 277 thread please let us know so that they can be look at for price comparisons.  I have a recent post up that is asking the same type of question with a little different twist to it.  In fact one the most interesting things that I have happening is that when I am sewing 2 layers of 9 oz wicket and craig leather I will actually have some squeaking going on as the needle is going through the leather, this is after it has been glued together using Barges glue after it has dried for at least a day in warm to hot days or put on a forced air boot drier when the ambient temps are low.  It is the weirdest thing to hear and watch.  I have gone in and made sure that everything is clean, well oiled and running like it should be a far as I can tell.   

Can you look at you needle package and tell me what point it shows? It could be P, S, D, etc. Also, are you already using a #25/200 needle?

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Wiz I am running a 25/200 S Schmetz needle.

Thanks

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I encountered a job where the S point gave me fits. I switched to a diamond/triangle point and it did the job without any more issues. The diamond point lets the thread sit on top, rather than getting drawn in on the ends. It gives a more pronounced effect. Bob sells them.

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I think that Wiz's original guess that the smaller needle is the culprit is correct. The larger needle has more space to "hide" the thread in, and overall creates a larger hole, so trying a larger needle may actually work.

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I might be wrong but I think the 25 is the correct size if not a little big for 277 thread,  I was doing a job just a few days before this last job to discover that I had a 24 needle in the machine and you talk about a real nightmare.  I thought it fixed  all my problems when I went to the 25, but it didn't so I am not sure if the type needle that wiz recommends will cure it but I am going to try it.  Thanks for the input wiz I will give a Bob a call as I have a few extra bucks to spare and give those whirl, not a curly wurly, just a whirl. 

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