The Right Way to Thread and Unthread Your Embroidery Machine

Threading and Unthreading Your Embroidery Machine

Are you threading and unthreading your embroidery machine correctly? Turns out, there is a right way and a wrong way to change the thread in your machine.

Threading Your Embroidery Machine

Threading and Unthreading Your Embroidery Machine

My machine is threaded from right to left, winding through the tension discs before overlapping the take up arm and then down through the needle.

Threading and Unthreading Your Embroidery Machine

The key is to first raise your needle to its highest position as well as raising your presser foot (yellow circle). That opens the tension discs (shown in the yellow rectangle with the cover removed) and allows the thread to be positioned between the discs. (Note from Bonnie: Many Brother/Baby Lock machines will automatically "set" with needle in highest position and raised presser foot when you first turn on your machine.)

Tensions disks control the amount of pressure applied to the thread which is essential to even stitches and proper embroidery tension. If you do not raise your needle and presser foot when threading your machine, the thread is not correctly seated in the tension discs.  

Unthreading Your Embroidery Machine

When changing thread, some embroiderers pull thread out of the machine from the spool. That is like pulling against the grain. (Note from Bonnie: Thread has a twist. Slide down the twist and it's smooth, slide up the twist and you get fuzz, which can get caught in your tension discs causing tension issues.) Pulling thread from the spool also pulls against the tension discs and can create upper tension issues or, over time, it can actually damage them in the process.

Threading and Unthreading Your Embroidery Machine

The correct way, is to clip the thread near the spool and remove it from the machine by pulling from the needle. That way, the thread is following its natural path and you are less likely to leave pieces of thread or lint behind or damage the tension discs.

Bonnie shows you how to floss/clean your thread path here.

It may not seem like it would do much harm but, over the years, improper wear and tear can add up and cause unnecessary grief, poor performance, costly repairs or all the above!

Debbie Henry
Sew Inspired By Bonnie

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