Sewing Noob
Posted: 26 December 2007 09:56 PM   [ Ignore ]  
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Hi all,

I am a sewing noob who just got his first sewing machine for xmas. Pretty excited.  So a number of questions:

1. The bobbin basics article looks like the bobbin and casing is identical to my own new machine.  Is that by any chance a Euro-Pro Shark 7133 in the pictures?  I’d be stoked if so as that would be a nice validation for me.

2. I have the Euro-Pro Shark 7133.  Does anyone else here use that?  Any tips you can offer to a new with the same machine?

3. Can anyone here recommend a good sewing forum that is active and helpful (sewing in general, I mean, not specific to outdoors).

Thanks all!

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Posted: 27 December 2007 01:54 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]  
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Hi Zeeple-

Congrats on your new machine.  You’ll have a great time with it I’m sure.

The bobbin basics article used a Simplicity S02, but most machines use a similar type of setup so I’m not surprised your 7133 looked the same. 

I know of several homemade outdoor gear forums but I don’t frequent any general sewing boards or newsgroups.  There have been times I’ve ended up searching for a piece of info and ended up at something like alt.sewing , so if you don’t get any help from someone in-the-know google will probably yield up a good baseline.

Tips for getting started would be:
-use new needles and quality thread
-balance your machine to the project at hand
-practice any new combination of materials first with cut-offs to correct any stitching problems in advance of the seaming your project.
-every project you complete is like a course in how to approach your next project.  learning by doing is the quickest way to develop skills to make the complicated stuff.

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Posted: 27 December 2007 03:03 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]  
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Awesome, thanks for the tips.  I have not done much yet but go through the manual, partially.  I have made a little pouch for my iPod out of old jeans and an old teeshirt but that is it. So further questions would be:

1. When you say balance the machine are you talking about matching needle and thread size to the weight of the fabric or are you talking about stitch width and length?

2. I have heard people say use good thread before.  What brand of threads and needles do you recommend?

Thanks!

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Posted: 27 December 2007 04:07 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]  
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Balance your machine = make sure the top and bottom thread tension is right.  See attached picture for further clarification.

Needles: I don’t have a brand recommendation for needles.  I buy bulk needles from southstarsupply (no affiliation) but you may not want that many needles all at once. 
TEX 40:  tarps, packs & stuff sacks. Needle recommendation: 90/14 or 100/16
TEX 24:apparel, sleeping bags,etc. Needle recommendation: 65/9 or 70/10
Note that I list needle in both formats.  Needles sometimes will have only one of the two numbers given, so 90/14 may say ‘90’ or ‘14’ depending on the brand. 

Thread: I use tex 24 and 40 black hydrophobe cones for most things, and either guttermann or metrosene brands 100% polyester thread available at local fabric stores when I want to match the thread color to the fabric I’m using.

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thread_tension.gif
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