Sometimes I love it, sometimes I don’t

Quilting a top on the longarm can be quick and easy but sometimes it’s not. The top on now is really too big but I’ve rigged up an extension for the leaders and got it on but there’s no room to get to the machine if there are issues and today there were issues. I wasn’t completely happy with my stitch quality so I did a little tweaking but didn’t get any improvement so I rethreaded the machine and that created a big problem — I could not get the tension adjusted right. So the bottom of the quilt had to be unrolled and I had to work my way through a troubleshooting list which included me trying a different bobbin case and destroying it. 

I finally got acceptable tension after taking apart the intermittent tensioner and cleaning some thread out that had wrapped around it. I also am having to slow down … sometimes when I’m in a hurry to finish something I find myself  jerking the machine around. Taking a deep breath, slowing down and concentrating on moving the machine smoothly helps. 

Sometimes the fabric makes a difference too. The stitches are good here. 


Not as good on this fabric. 

The quilt is reloaded and after quilting for a couple more hours I’m done for the day. It’s going to take another day to finish unfortunately. 

7 thoughts on “Sometimes I love it, sometimes I don’t

  1. Florence Kensek

    Oh my gosh — that’s beautiful! I can’t do that — but I have a long-arm quilter who quilts my work and I often think about what would happen if the thread broke or jammed. You are a very determined person — I so admire that.

  2. The Joyful Quilter

    SEW frustrating!! I had trouble at the beginning of my last quilt. Tried and tried to get it to work. DH finally fixed it when he got home, but I had wasted HOURS in my fruitless attempts.

  3. Charleen

    Isn’t it frustrating? Honestly, though, you really know how to troubleshoot and recover!! It’s beautiful. I ran into problems on the very last step of a hooded sweater last night – trying to Kitchener garter stitch. Finally took out the last two rows. Taking a deep breath, slowing down and concentrating helps with so many things. So does putting it aside and having a glass of wine 🙂

  4. Sara F

    I can only imagine how frustrated you were. I had a similar issue last winter with my embroidery machine when I was on deadline to get the names onto the cuffs of the Christmas stockings I was making for 3 of the grandkids. The thread kept breaking or making weird little loops all over.

  5. Linda in NE

    I think it was just that kind of day. My machine had been quilting beautifully, but today it didn’t want to behave….tension issues….little bitty eyelashes on the back. Changing bobbins helped some, but not totally. I’m beginning to think it’s the humidity…..or maybe it’s time for a new backlash disk in the bobbin case…SOMETHING!

  6. Angie Kiker

    Aaah, that old tension issue—rears it’s ugly head at the most important times. It looks like you got it under control. Problem is you never quite know what causes it. I love my long arm, but when it acts up like this I get so frustrated. Your quilting looks lovely, and perfect tension has returned! Yay! Beautiful quilt too!

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