Monday, May 30, 2011

Machine maintenance

Do you do routine maintenance on your sewing machine?  I use a compressed air can on mine occasionally.  Some people say you shouldn't because it will drive the lint further into the machine.  My machine has holes in the bottom so the lint just gets shot out.  I had read that you should oil your machine in between trips to the repair shop, but I never knew what what exactly you should oil, so I didn't do anything.

Lately, my machine has been stalling.  I'm not quite sure how else to describe it.  I'll be sewing along and it just stops.  There's no error message.  It just stops.  I take my foot off the pedal and then it will sew again for a bit before it stalls again.  I've replaced the needle.  I've rethreaded and blown lint out.  It still stalls.

Yesterday, I'm Just A Guy Who Quilts posted about finding a video on youtube that taught him how to do clean and oil his Bernina machine.  I went over to youtube to see if there was a video on cleaning Janomes, the kind of machine I have.  Sure enough there was a video.  I finally leaned what I'm supposed to oil.  Yay!  I took the top plate off and cleaned out even more lint than I expected.  Then I put in exactly 2 drops of oil in the correct places.  I took a scrap of fabric and sewed back and forth a few times.  The first few passes gave me 2 stalls, but by the 5th pass it was smooth sewing.  The real test will be sewing more than a few passes on a scrap, but I feel optimistic.  I really didn't want to have to get the machine serviced when I've only been sewing on it for 8 months.

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