Thank you all for the replies. And sorry for my delayed response - I've been fiddling with it a bit more and trying to find a good window of time in which the kids are otherwise occupied! I get you about the needle/thread size @Matt S - the needle that was installed in it and the similar ones that came with it arent in a box unfortunately so I cant see what size they are, but in addition to being big they're a bit longer than the other needles that came with it.. having watched that video @Uwe I think my timing is ok, but it seems to need the longer needle for the hook to catch it at all. All of the needles I've used with my other machines have been the same length so this is also new to me- which number on the box refers to the length of the needle? @Uwe and @Handstitched I definitely think part of the issue is my bobbin threading- the thread is just not going behind the tension spring- I've tried loosening the tension screw and it doesn't seem to help. Should I take the shuttle out and have a look? Not that I know how to do that! I've attached pictures of my threading @Uwe and I think I've corrected the pin issue. I'm also going to try to attach a link to a video of my bobbin when the plate is off to see if it looks normal.
@Matt S I'm really just trying to learn more - pre furlough I was about to go on a leather bag making course in england, darnnit, but now I'm trying to use the time to learn as much as I can. I've got some nice soft chrome tan leather, about 2mm thick which I want to try to make a really simple bag, just for myself. I have a friend who makes leather sheaths for her brother, who in turn makes beautiful knives, and she has ideas of things she'd be able to do with the machine up and running too. I work at a tannery called Skyeskyns, usually making rugs and cushions, that kind of thing.
@Handstitched even though I cant get the bloody thing going yet, I already love it!! It's like a tractor!
Skye is much more mountainous and green than Shetland actually, and today it is brilliant sunshine and very picture postcard.
Thanks again for your help!