1 July 2012

Help! Is it Time for the Repairs Shop?


UPDATE! Thanks to my lovely readers, it's fixed! Just saved myself three million pounds! Wooop!

Readers, I need your help! I usually try to keep this blog positive (who wants to read about other people's problems, eh?), but today I just want to scream... arrrrrrrgggghhhhh! I think my sewing machine is broken. And what are friends for if not to offer help and advice when needed? If anyone can help me with this I'd be really grateful.

The feed dogs are laying low, so my fabric won't move when I try to sew. Can you see that massive gap between the feed dogs and needle plate? I cleaned it the other day so there's no lint or anything stuck in it. I think it might be a problem with the feed dog lever or spring or whatever makes it go up and down. It moves, but only an eeny weeny bit.

Is it time for the repair shop? Can you recommend a sewing machine repairs place, preferably in South London (somewhere near Brixton), alternatively Central London (near Oxford Circus)? Am I going to have to pay three million pounds to get it fixed?!

This is especially irritating as I was getting really stuck into my pussy bow blouse and was hoping to have the final toile finished today. And just as I realised the machine was broken, the rain started pouring on what was previously a sunny day in London :(

Thank you so much to everyone who chipped in and helped me fix my machine - I love you guys!

22 comments:

  1. I'm not an expert, but is it possible you have inadvertently put the machine in darning mode? Some sewing machines have this mode in which the feed dogs are lowered and can be used for free-motion quilting, etc. If that is the case, turning the knob back to sewing mode should fix this. Hope it's that simple :)

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    1. Thanks for the suggestion. As far as I can tell I don't have that mode on my machine.

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    2. ... and it turns out I do!!

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  2. This may sound like a dumb suggestion, but did you check to make sure the switch on the feed dogs is in the up not down position? I have a crazy bad habit of accidentally messing up a setting while moving around my machine and 9 times out of 10, if my machine is acting up, it's my fault! lol

    You might also try taking the plate over the feed dogs off to see what's going on. You might be able to figure it out yourself.

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    1. I don't think I have a feed dog switch on my machine. It's a J3-18, as simple as can be!

      I tried taking the needle plate off the other day when I cleaned it but the screw driver that came with the machine didn't fit!

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    2. I take it all back! Turns out I do!!

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  3. Hi Tilly, Maybe your feed dogs have been lowered by mistake? Also, my other suggestion would be pull the machine apart as much as you're (confidently) able to do, and watch it closely as you slowly turn the wheel, and maybe you can see what bit looks like its not moving right? Sometimes after a bit of a clean things get moved into the wrong place. Good luck! Sam xox

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    1. It looks like the spring or little knob under the feed dogs aren't moving very much :(

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  4. The feed dogs are down - on the right of the picture there are 'pictures' of little triangles embossed on the white plastic, one set of pictures is a bit higher than the other. Your machine is current set on the lower pictures, meaning the feed dogs are dropped. There is a metal 'lever' going vertically down from the pictures, grab hold of that at the bottom and pull down gently and move it towards the left and the feed dogs should come back up. Hope this makes sense! it would be far easier to show on a picture!

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  5. If you don't manage to fix it yourself, the sewing shop on Deptford High Street is really good. I bought my sewing machine there and have been back in since to ask for advice and they're really friendly and helpful.

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    1. Thank you, that's really good to know.

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  6. Glad it's fixed. And now you know your machine has another feature you can use one day. :-)

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  7. Oh yay! So glad lovely friends helped you fix it, they did the same for me earlier in the year and I could not have been more grateful! What a relief for you Tilly, now you can sew on ;o)

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  8. Now you know how to practice some Free Machine embroidery! :-)

    clothesandsewing.blogspot.com

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  9. ha! brilliant. yay for the internets! also I have the same machine and I had no idea that it could do free motion sewing! hmmmmm embroidery alert!

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  10. Wow, glad you got that sorted, Tilly. Thank god for the internet - again.

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  11. Ah! I've been trying to figure out the same problem on mine...it's been sewing (mostly) but definitely not feeding right. Hoping it's something as simple on mine, can't wait to get home and adjust!

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  12. Hey Tilly,

    There's a brilliant-looking sewing repair shop near me, in South Peckham near Peckham Rye, on Rye Lane if you ever end up in a permanent pickle. My 40yo Elna hasn't had the pleasure to meet Mr L Tagg yet, but I did pop in one Saturday and judging from the madly wide range of machines he was working on, he seems to be the answer to all malice.

    L. Tagg opposite Tesco, there every Saturday 10am-2pm, and other times, too: 0207 732 1851. If you're in Brixton, bus 37 will take you right there. 227 Rye Lane, SE15.

    https://maps.google.co.uk/maps?q=rye+lane&hl=en&ll=51.46644,-0.066004&spn=0.01564,0.038581&sll=53.800651,-4.064941&sspn=7.595141,19.753418&hq=rye+lane&t=m&z=15&layer=c&cbll=51.466294,-0.066025&panoid=UdYAl1Ccfamyi7oNO9uBRQ&cbp=12,292.77,,0,3.58

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  13. Erm, or 224 Rye Lane, as it CLEARLY says on the shop sign on the streetview link...

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  14. Oh, super-frustrating especially when one is halfway through a project, but I am so glad you got her fixed up ok! Life without a sewing machine... quelle horreur!

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