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Cant do Free motion quilting !!!

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    Cant do Free motion quilting !!!

    I am a new quilter and have tried everything except throw my machine out the window and jump off the roof! I am not sure what my tension should be I keep getting the bobbin thread all bunched up like a birds nest , I'm open to any suggestions I want to learn to do this so bad .I have a brother CX205LA .I feel like an idiot and very frustrated 😰..there is no place within miles of me that I could take a class so I'm pretty much at everyones mercy.. Please any suggestions would be GREATLY appreciated.. Thank you so much in advance… ❤️

    #2
    Re: Cant do Free motion quilting !!!

    You've probably already tried rethreading the machine. Sometimes that helps.

    Do you have a scrap set (top fabric, batting and backing) that you can play with the tension, one click at a time until you find one that works?
    Katrina
    “Nothing can dim the light which shines from within.” Maya Angelou

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      #3
      Re: Cant do Free motion quilting !!!

      I have a brother and don't have issues..what foot are you using?

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        #4
        Re: Cant do Free motion quilting !!!

        Sorry, I'm clueless about FMQ....I hand quilt. Buts lots of knowledgeable folks will help you. I wanted to say hello and welcome to the forum form Michigan!

        💫 Star lover

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          #5
          Re: Cant do Free motion quilting !!!

          Are you sure you are lowering your presser foot? It must be down to engage the tension mechanism. No upper tensions lead to birds nesting underneath. You need a darning foot to FMQ. If you don't have one you can FMQ with no foot, just watch where you place your hands! Feed dogs lowered or covered if the machine won't let them be lowered. Stitch length set to zero. Those are my checkpoints to remember. It might help to pull up your bobbin thread before you start stitching. Speed of Stitches and movement of your hands sometimes affects stitch quality, definitely affects stitch length. And I found some machines just won't play nice when all these adjustments are made. Many people find old vintage Singers do great FMQing
          Last edited by Jean Sewing Machine; May 24, 2018, 10:45 AM.

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            #6
            Re: Cant do Free motion quilting !!!

            Its not you, its your sewing machine. The brother CX205LA has a teeny tiny throat. I would never attempt to FMQ anything bigger than a fat quarter on on machine with a throat this small. I have successfully FMQ on three different Brother sewing machines, but never with one with such a small throat.

            FMQ is not for chickens, and you need to have a machine with a reasonable throat size. 7" throat is a minimum IMHO.
            Stash Treasure Acquisitions Beyond Life Expectancy. My stash keeps me STABLE, oh yeah.... and dark chocolate.

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              #7
              Re: Cant do Free motion quilting !!!

              Small throat space has nothing to do with the tension issues. The first thing I thought was whether the presser foot had been lowered (I have been guilty of forgetting that many times, and then I get all those eyelashes). As pointed before, you need a darning foot and some way of disengaging the feed dogs, cover them or set stitch length to 0. What size needle and thread are you using?

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                #8
                Re: Cant do Free motion quilting !!!

                I would suggest you get on you-tube and check out some Leah Day videos or some by Rob on the Missouri Star tutorials. There are lots of other free tutorials, too, to help you get familiar with all the adjustments you have to make to do FMQ. Like someone here said, it's not for sissies. And it's not something a person can do automatically, just because they are artistic in other ways. Don't get down on yourself, just read and watch tutes and ask questions.

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                  #9
                  Re: Cant do Free motion quilting !!!

                  Sometimes its the bobbin. Try a new one. Then, make sure the feed dogs are down, stitch set at 0.
                  Now, it is time to get your feet and your hands working together. If you are too slow with your foot and your hands are moving, it could birdsnest, or if you are too fast and too slow . Just forge on.
                  It happens to all of us. When mine birdsnests, its usually the thread is not threaded right or the bobbin wasn't wound quite right.
                  Walk in peace with the Lord by your side.
                  Terry

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                    #10
                    Re: Cant do Free motion quilting !!!

                    Don't feel bad I can't either.
                    Blessed are the children of the piecemakers for they shall inherit the quilts!

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                      #11
                      Re: Cant do Free motion quilting !!!

                      Know that we have ALL felt that way initially. And sometimes "initially" lasts for a while. Trial and error, read everything online you can find when you have trouble. There may be a group on Facebook for your Brother machine. I know there are groups for other brands. A tried and true method is to get out of your sewing room, shut the door and don't go back until the next day. Have wine as needed.

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                        #12
                        Re: Cant do Free motion quilting !!!

                        It definitely is a learning process. My 1st attempts were awful.
                        I watched a ton of YouTube videos and practiced until I could do a simple
                        meander. I am slowly teaching myself.
                        All the above suggestions are great, sometimes you miss a simple step.

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                          #13
                          Re: Cant do Free motion quilting !!!

                          I think that machine is like the Juki 2010.....altho I am not certain. Make sure you lower your feed dogs, and if you don't do that, set you stitch length at 0 (yes, ZERO!). By setting the stitch length like that, the feed dogs barely move. Also, be sure you are using your quilting foot, not a regular presser foot.

                          Also, there a lot of videos on youtube you could watch!
                          pat.

                          No rain....no rainbows!


                          sigpic

                          If you can't be nice.....BE QUIET!

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                            #14
                            Re: Cant do Free motion quilting !!!

                            I don't know anything about your machine, but here is an easy tutorial made by Jenny's Daughter Hillary:
                            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yGNOS5JQHYQ
                            Vonnie

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                              #15
                              Re: Cant do Free motion quilting !!!

                              The Juki TL2010Q.....it's harp space is 8.5" and whilst other machines have much bigger harps, the Juki harp space is actually higher than many machines meaning you can fit a lot of quilt through that space.
                              Last edited by just4me; May 25, 2018, 01:45 AM.

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