How to fix Tension problem on .66oz membrane

Posted by: Cowgirl007

How to fix Tension problem on .66oz membrane - 01/03/18 10:36 AM

I sewed .5oz noseeum to .66oz mebrane 10 for baffles on a quilt only to realize after I finished and was getting ready to fill the baffles with down that the tension was too tight on one side. I’m thinking about snipping the thread every couple inches to release the tension becasue I can’t rip out the whole seam without taking the quilt apart, plus the membrane would have stiching holes the down could seep through. Problem with that plan is parts of the baffle would no longer be attached to the membrane, allowing the down to shift around. Does anyone have a better plan for fixing this mess?

Posted by: 4evrplan

Re: How to fix Tension problem on .66oz membrane - 01/03/18 03:49 PM

I'm not a very good tailor, so I could be wrong, but if you cut the seam every 2 inches, won't the whole seam eventually unravel anyway?
Posted by: Cowgirl007

Re: How to fix Tension problem on .66oz membrane - 01/03/18 04:55 PM

Whether or not a seam will unravel depends on stitch length, thread and fabric. These don’t want to budge so maybe after a couple through hikes they would start to unravel but for the moment, the stiches don’t want to slip.
Posted by: Dryer

Re: How to fix Tension problem on .66oz membrane - 01/04/18 08:43 AM

What machine? Typical sewing machines have only 1 adjustable tension bias which is usually the spool/needle side.
You might need to play with the bobbin casing tension and sew some test strips of your two fabrics.
All my machines are old "steel gear" Singers and adjusting bobbin tension is easy. If you look at the bobbin casing, you'll see a flat spring that the thread slips under. There are usually two tiny screws that hold that spring. One fastens the spring to the casing, the other is for tension. You can loosen or tighten that screw and balance stitch tension against the needle side tension perfectly if you mess with it. You'll likely have to pop the bobbin casing out of the machine to get to that screw. You want the stitch loop buried between the two pieces of cloth. If your cloth is bunching up, go with a smaller needle, dial back your thread tension, maybe reduce stitch per inch setting on some test pieces. A "walking foot" helps as well. Make sure your machine is well lubricated! 99% of machine problems is lack of oil, top and bottom bearings.

Edit.... Looking at what you just made (i like it! People pay extra for those gathers! grin ), have a friend hold one end of the seam, you on the other end, and GENTLY pull. You might be able to stretch it out. Don't cut your seams/stitches.... a bigger "mess" will happen over time. When I make such things, especially with slick light fabrics, I spend a lot of time on test strips to get it right before destroying the real fabric. cool

Edit #2...I noticed something about your seams. Notice how the gathers form "echelons" with respect to each seam? That's a feed problem, not your machine. When sewing large pieces of cloth, care must be taken to feed the fabric with both hands evenly, with plenty of slack before it gets to the presser foot/needle. Else, one side of the fabric will pull, usually the side you shove under the machine side. This takes practice but once understood becomes second nature. Sewing machines can't pull much weight, and you have a heavy piece there. Still, the piece looks functional to me.

Posted by: PaHiker

Re: How to fix Tension problem on .66oz membrane - 01/04/18 02:07 PM

Don't necessarily blame it on the tension, I did this a lot when I first sewed something. I talked to women at Joann and they told me that two other things cause this, especially when two different materials are involved.

First is feeding the material into the machine, don't pull the material through, allow the machine to dictate the speed, but hold the material taut so they feed through together.

The second problem is when one material is slicker than the other, it may be sliding through at a different speed. The suggestion for this was pinning the two materials together. I found this tedious, and kept forgetting to remove the needle causing the machine needle to hit the pinning needle, dulling the machine needle. I switched to taping the two together. There is a sewing tape that dissolves when it is washed, it does a great job of holding the two pieces together while sewing.

Still don't have the guts to attempt a quilt.