Monday, January 21, 2008


The sewing machine is one of the primary tools used by textile artists. Nonetheless, we often find ourselves baffled whenever it decides to have "a mind of its own" and refuses to cooperate and work the way we think it should. Following are sites that provide good troubleshooting information as well as insight into
how the darn things work...

How Does a Sewing Machine Work? - This is a fun youtube video of three guys (MIT grad students and self-proclaimed nerds) who use their bodies as the various parts of a sewing machine to demonstrate how one works. As one web site proclaims, "It's a hoot and does a pretty good job of explaining how the magic happens." The video is about 7 minutes long with the first 4 minutes used to introduce themselves and set up the demonstration.

Dull Needle Illustration - many machine problems can be corrected by simply changing the needle - this illustration demonstrates why through the use of magnification

Free Sewing Machine Service Information Covering Timing and Tension Adjustments for Some Sewing Machines

Free Threading Diagrams for Over 400 Domestic and Industrial Sewing Machine Models

Threading a Sewing Machine - Keep the Pressure Foot Up

Troubleshooting Guide

Sewing Machine Troubleshooting Guide

Sewing Machine Troubleshooting Guide

How a Bobbin Works: Straight Stitch - Great animation that shows how a bobbin catches thread in a sewing machine

How a Bobbin Works: Chain Stitch and Lock Stitch Animation (scroll 1/2 way down page)

How the Stitching Mechanism in A Sewing Machine Works – Jonah Elgart

Replacement Sewing Machine Service Manuals (for purchase)

Sewing Machine Parts & Accessories – available for Singer, Brother, Viking, Janome, Kenmore, Pfaff, Elna, White, New Home, Baby Lock


Anonymous said...

Gwen I am up early reading your site on MLK birthday. I celebrated it last night, but wanted to say THANK YOU FOR THIS VITAL INFORMATION. I will pass it on to members of my guild.

Gwen Magee (Gwendolyn) said...

I'm so glad the info is useful - keep reading, coming up are "All About..." posts on Needles, and on Threads & Bobbins.