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    Basic questions-needle size & stitch length

    What size needle and stitch length should I use when piecing together a quilt top?

    #2
    Re: Basic questions-needle size & stitch length

    For cotton fabric I use a size 80/12 needle, and a 2.5 stitch length.
    ~Laurie

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      #3
      Re: Basic questions-needle size & stitch length

      I'm new to the issue of thread weights and needle sizes too. I have been using standard Coats & Clark Dual Duty Poly/Cotton thread both in my bobbin and in the top thread for piecing and quilting. Do I really need to use a lighter weight thread in the bobbin? Laurie would you use a larger needle for the actual quilting through the top, batting and back? I had used a 75/11 needle for my piecing and didn't think to change it when I started machine quilting the sandwich. My upper thread kept fraying and breaking so I changed to a 90/14 needle and so far so good. It does make a larger hole in my top when I am free motion stitching but I am having less problems with the top thread breaking. I have been sewing with a 2.0 stitch length for piecing and sometimes go down to 1.6 - 1.8 for stitch in the ditch quilting.
      Linda
      -its not the number of breaths you take, but the moments that take your breath away!

      sigpic

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        #4
        Re: Basic questions-needle size & stitch length

        I try to use all cotton thread in both the bobbin and the needle because polyester can wear on your quilt eventually. For me, a 75 needle is just to small. I use the longer stitch for the sole purpose of (ACK!!!) unsewing. It makes it easier to take a piece apart if you need to.
        I do use a 90 for quilting, less thread problems. And I really find that using the same thread top and bottom eliminates thread breakage issues. As you, most machines have a mind of their own when it comes to thread, so I always try to do a small project with scraps of what I am doing first, so I know what temprament the machine is going to have with the thread and fabric and batting.
        I hope this helps!
        ~Laurie

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          #5
          Re: Basic questions-needle size & stitch length

          Thanks Laurie! Really good tips! So far most my projects have been wall hangings so maybe the poly/cotton thread will not be a problem like it might be in a heavily used and laundered bed quilt. But I will start stocking up on cotton threads for future projects.

          I hear you about longer stitch length making ripping out seams easier! I should probably keep mine longer for that reason too.

          I generally test my thread setup, tension etc. with a small sample sandwich also....it is a tremendous help in detecting problems early instead of being surprised with a mess on my main project! Thanks again...think I will stock up on some 90/14 needles too!
          Linda
          -its not the number of breaths you take, but the moments that take your breath away!

          sigpic

          Comment


            #6
            Re: Basic questions-needle size & stitch length

            Originally posted by Sewbee View Post
            Thanks Laurie! Really good tips! So far most my projects have been wall hangings so maybe the poly/cotton thread will not be a problem like it might be in a heavily used and laundered bed quilt. But I will start stocking up on cotton threads for future projects.

            I hear you about longer stitch length making ripping out seams easier! I should probably keep mine longer for that reason too.

            I generally test my thread setup, tension etc. with a small sample sandwich also....it is a tremendous help in detecting problems early instead of being surprised with a mess on my main project! Thanks again...think I will stock up on some 90/14 needles too!
            You are welcome!
            ~Laurie

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