Using the Sewing Machine
To start using the sewing machine, you need to pick your needle type, fabric and design. This may require you to replace the needle.
There are a few reasons why the needle of the sewing machine may need to be replaced. First, the needles do dull over time and occasionally need replacing to ensure you are getting the most efficient sewing experience, and second, different fabrics require different thickness of needle. For example, a pair of jeans will require a larger needle than that of a basic piece of cotton fabric.
The presser foot is used to hold your fabric in place while sewing, you can lift and lower the foot as needed during your process. Once you have the correct needle size and know how to use the presser foot, you are ready to start sewing!
How to Replace the Needle
1. Locate the disc-shaped screwdriver (1) and the needle clamp screw (2).
2. Turn the screw counter clockwise with the screwdriver to loosen the needle position. Note: If the need clamp screw is loosened too much, the clamp that holds the needle may fall off. Only loosen slightly.
3. Remove the needle and store (please ask a FabLab staff member if you are unsure as to where to put the needle)
4. With the flat side of the needle towards the rear of the sewing machine, insert the needle. Tighten the clamp screw by turning it clockwise with the screwdriver. Note: Do not apply strong force when tightening the needle clamp screw, it may damage the machine.
How to Use the Presser Foot
1. Raise the needle by turning the handwheel so that the mark on the wheel points directly upwards. Note: The red line on the image mimics the notch that exists on the machine.
2. Raise the presser foot lever as shown below
3. Place fabric under the presser foot, pass the thread under the presser foot, and then pull out about 2inches of thread towards the rear of the machine, as shown below.
4. Lower the presser foot lever, the fabric should be held snug under the presser foot.
5. Turn the handwheel to lower the needle where you would like to beginning stitching.
6. Slide the sewing speed controller to the left or right to adjust the sewing speed
7. Slowly press down on the foot controller to begin the sewing process
8. When you are satisfied with how much you have sewn, lift your foot off of the foot controller. You can raise the presser foot lever to release the fabric, turn the handwheel to ensure the needle is not still in the fabric.
9. Pull the fabric to the left side of the machine, and then cut the thread using scissors or the thread cutter on the side of the sewing machine.