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20U good for E thread or not?

 


hackish  (No License)

Nov 1, 2012, 4:13 PM
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20U good for E thread or not? Can't Post

I did my research and spoke with many people before purchasing a 20U. I got an almost new unit but it really does need some adjustment to properly sew e-thread. So I consulted with an industrial sewing machine guy about a tuneup.

He said the 20U is entirely the wrong machine to sew e-thread. Tensioning isn't designed for that weight of thread, the hook can't be setup or adjusted properly and it's going to be dropping stitches at best. I spoke with someone different who said basically the same in not so many words.

My experience hasn't been so great with this machine and it is dropping stitches and tension is really tough to get right...

Thoughts? Is it really the wrong machine or do I just need to find a better mechanic?

-Michael


Premier likestojump  (D License)

Nov 1, 2012, 4:23 PM
Post #2 of 12 (1523 views)
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Re: [hackish] 20U good for E thread or not? [In reply to] Can't Post

Well, there are plenty of people using 20U's with E thread, so I would guess that you need a better mechanic. Or better yet - get the service manual, and get DYIing !


monkycndo  (D License)

Nov 1, 2012, 7:28 PM
Post #3 of 12 (1482 views)
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Re: [hackish] 20U good for E thread or not? [In reply to] Can't Post

When I was researching what machine to start with, I was told by quite a few folks a 20U is a good first machine. Readily available at a good price and parts are cheap. It took some help, but got the machine dialed in on E thread. Sews like a champ. Yes, getting the tension right will take some tweeking, but it can be done.


Premier PhreeZone  (D License)
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Nov 1, 2012, 7:53 PM
Post #4 of 12 (1475 views)
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Re: [hackish] 20U good for E thread or not? [In reply to] Can't Post

I've ran probably 500 yards of E Thread though my machine once i figured out how to adjust the tension correctly. The 20U is a great machine!


wmw999  (D 6296)

Nov 2, 2012, 5:37 AM
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Re: [hackish] 20U good for E thread or not? [In reply to] Can't Post

I've used E thread on any number of home-class machines. The biggest key I've found is getting a big enough needle -- that way the thread doesn't catch going in or out of the fabric. My latest project has involved sewing neoprene, and upsizing my needle just made the problems go away.

No experience with 20U in particular so I can't talk to tension, but do pay attention to needles and don't skimp there.

Wendy P.


southerncutie

Nov 2, 2012, 6:26 AM
Post #6 of 12 (1429 views)
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Re: [hackish] 20U good for E thread or not? [In reply to] Can't Post

Your sewing machine mechanic is wrong! When Mike Furry set up Sun Path his production floor was almost entirely 20Us, using e thread. He and Red Payne convinced me that it would be the best machine for my loft for general repairs. I'm glad I listened. The 20U I purchased new in 1984 is still running great, has never seen a mechanic, and I wouldn't part with it. I have used it for canopy repairs, container repairs, quilting, and heavy canvas projects. With the right thread, needle, and tension this machine can do just about anything!


piisfish

Nov 2, 2012, 6:34 AM
Post #7 of 12 (1421 views)
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Re: [hackish] 20U good for E thread or not? [In reply to] Can't Post

I never put anything else than E-Thread in mine Smile

change mechanic, or just make a phone call to Weird Wayne, he will do some voodoo over the phone Laugh


riggerrob  (D 14840)

Nov 2, 2012, 7:14 AM
Post #8 of 12 (1400 views)
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Re: [hackish] 20U good for E thread or not? [In reply to] Can't Post

Hee!
Hee!
Get a new sewing machine mechanic.

Your second step should be to buy a bunch of larger needles. Size 18 works okay with E-Thread and canopy fabric, but for container repairs, you will want size 21 needles.
I have lost count of how many spools of E-Thread I have run through Singer 20U machines.


jonathan.newman  (D 30644)

Nov 2, 2012, 5:31 PM
Post #9 of 12 (1336 views)
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Re: [hackish] 20U good for E thread or not? [In reply to] Can't Post

First, get the right needles. For container repair, 20 is minimum, 21 works better. If you're patching canopies, or maybe light jumpsuit repairs, an 18 will work.

Second, you will develop a thorough understanding of how tension works, top and bottom. I found that bobbin tension was more critical than upper when it came to getting good stitches.

Some other tips from my verrry frustration 20U learning experience -- first troubleshooting step should always be changing a needle. presser foot tension can really help with feed issues. A couple threads wrapped up in the bobbin race can ruin your day. Oil everything, including the bobbin race. A seemingly normal bobbin case may not feed with even tension.

have fun with it.


ChrisClark  (D 8433)

Nov 3, 2012, 1:12 PM
Post #10 of 12 (1262 views)
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Re: [hackish] 20U good for E thread or not? [In reply to] Can't Post

I have had two 20u machines and used them for just about everything. Also here in the UK the thread is sized on a metric scale, 40 metric is the equivalent of E thread but is slightly heavier and I have never had any problems. I use size 21 needles for most container work. I have given up using mechanics to fix any problems, last two were useless and in the end had to figure out solution myself.


(This post was edited by ChrisClark on Nov 3, 2012, 1:15 PM)


councilman24  (D 8631)

Nov 3, 2012, 5:34 PM
Post #11 of 12 (1227 views)
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Re: [hackish] 20U good for E thread or not? [In reply to] Can't Post

Read the manual. Not only does it talk about 18 needles and size 40 metric thread (E) but size 30 metric (F). Manual is here. http://parts.singerco.com/IPinstManuals/20U.pdf

Another version of the manual says 19 needle and metric 30 thread (F).

As said above, get a new mechanic or one that doesn't have something else to sell.


hackish  (No License)

Nov 11, 2012, 6:07 AM
Post #12 of 12 (1093 views)
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Re: 20U good for E thread or not? [In reply to] Can't Post

Thanks everyone. I'm trying to find another mechanic. There seem to be only 2 in my city and they both have the same opinion about the machine. I think I may have to pack the machine up and travel to Montreal to find someone decent. I'm also wondering if somehow they're assuming that the machine is a home machine because as soon as I mention size 69 thread their ears shut off.

-Michael



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