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Old 02-19-2007, 12:47 PM
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My First Practice Session with the Tacsew

I finally got to play with my new Tacsew machine today. LOL!!! Wow!!! This ain't no Singer homey job, is it? Good grief - it really takes off!! I have to get use to this for sure ... I'm gonna be practicing for days before I mess with any leather.

I can see it's not easy to crawl with an industrial machine ... but I'm a musician; I'll learn how to play this thing.

I did do a test run on my armrest patterns with some cheapo vinyl ... tweaked 'em up and they're good to go ... so that was some progress at least.

There's one problem I'm having and need some help with: When I sew a seam, the stitches seem to be too loose -- if I pull on the seam, I can see light; a space between the two pieces of material. Is this because of that cheapo vinyl? I even sewed 3 layers to 3 layers and still see a space when I pull on the seam.

I tightened the thread tension but that didn't seem to do anything -- what do I do about this?

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Old 02-19-2007, 03:48 PM
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Jealous, jealous, jealous, wish I had that problem ..........wish I knew how to help!! I have looked at upholstery sewing machines and whew kinda pricey. I have often wanted to try and find a used machine and try to teach myself but even a good used machine is pricey. Good luck let us know how it turns out. Brian
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Old 02-19-2007, 04:22 PM
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Thanks, Brian. Old ... new ... the prices don't change -- the best price out there is for the Tacsew I got: See Here

I think the problem I'm having is with this thin cheapo vinyl ... nonetheless I sure am having some fun!
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Old 02-19-2007, 06:23 PM
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Try tightening the bobbin tension, just a bit. On my Consew, I slowed the thing down with a different pulley setup on the motor. I have a slight hand/eye co-ordination problem due to a past stroke and the slower needle speed really helps. I find I have much greater stitch controll.
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Old 02-19-2007, 07:13 PM
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Thanks, Bob!

I tightened the bobbin and the thread tension ... then I called the outfit I bought the Tacsew from and they're sending me a smaller belt and pulley. I can't wait to see the difference!

I can get it to crawl for a bit but then it slows down ... I then give it more juice and it takes off on me.

I also made an 8-inch extension on the motor-arm (the part that's connected to the treadle) and connected the pitman arm to the left side of the treadle ... that gave me twice the amount of movement on the treadle which helped some, too.
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Old 02-19-2007, 08:41 PM
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FYI, in the future you can buy a replacement belt for you machine at any local hardware store, its pretty much a standard V belt, just match up the numbers on the belt. Also you can find pulleys at hardware stores or Fleet and Farm type outfits. Its a bit cheaper this way than paying for shipping.
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Old 02-19-2007, 09:44 PM
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Thanks for the info, Hooligan32. I went to Home Depot but they just stared at me like a deer in headlights ... *all* the hardware stores have been driven out of business around here, man (Central NJ) - by chains like Home Depot.
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Old 02-20-2007, 06:45 AM
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Well I guess I'm lucky! I still have a local ACE hardware. Yes it's a chain BUT, it is locally owned franchise. When you walk in the store there are men standing there that say"what can I help you find ". Don't know that I've ever gotten the deer in the headlights look there. I think these guy would probably have or at least know where to order fasteners for NOAH's ARC . I don't mind paying a little more for something. I have wasted so much time and gas returning stuff to the LOWES and Home Depot it's ridiculous. Now don't get me wrong I do buy from them occasionally, just don't like to. Kinda like I HATE walmart. They used to be great. But now they have succeeded in destroying the MOM and POP outfits. I guess we did it to our selves, walmart didn't hold a gun to anybody's head and make them shop there. Every label in the place (almost every) says MADE IN CHINA. We've sold out and it may be to late to do anything about it. OK OK STEP AWAY FROM THE SOAP BOX AND MOVE ALONG!!! Sorry kinda got carried away there, it's just one of those things that rubs me wrong. Brian
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Old 02-20-2007, 02:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by horvath
I tightened the thread tension but that didn't seem to do anything -- what do I do about this?
Alan: There is a bottom tension too. Here's a picture of my spare bobbin case. See the two screws on the side of the bobbin case? the front one sets the lower tension. You have to adjust the top tension and the bottom tension at the same time until the stitches look the same on the top and the bottom. The thinner the fabric, the tighter both tensions need to be.
Another thing that can cause your problem is if you are not getting the bobbin thread under the lower tension when you put in a new bobbin. The two screws hold a little thin piece of spring steel. The bobbin thread has to engage that little piece, or your stitches will be loose on the bottom.
To adjust tension: If the thread lays flat on the top of the fabric, your top tension is too tight. If the thread lays flat on the underside of the fabric, your bottom tension is too tight.
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Old 02-20-2007, 02:49 PM
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Alan: Does your bobbin case come out of the machine to replace the bobbin, or is it always in the machine, like mine?
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Old 02-20-2007, 04:14 PM
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Thanks, Dan. I recently learned about the bobbin tension and was surprised. Thankls for the basics.

Yes -- my bobbin case removes from the machine ... I put the new bobbin in (counter-clockwise) and make sure the thread goes into that channel you mentioned.

I'm also thinking about buying a bunch of prewound bobbins now.

LOL! Once you get busy, winding bobbins becomes a pain in the butt!
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Old 02-20-2007, 08:35 PM
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Freehand Sewing: Music Notes

I've been practicing again ... this time I'm learning to make a musical note. The idea is to get them all to look the same - HA! I think if I make a few dozen of these, I'll get it down ... and then I'll have a little logo to put here and there; one on each armrest ... one in the top corner of each seat ... a subtle signature kind of thing?

This is just black thread on black leather ... I'm wondering what it would look like if I cut notes out of cream elk and sewed them with black thread onto the black elk.

BTW, the top 6 notes are #69 Nylon and the bottom 6 notes are #92 Poly; I don't see *any* difference!

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Old 02-21-2007, 06:52 AM
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Looks good!!! tell you what I'll box up my seats and door panels and send them to you with some fabric and let you get after it. What ya think!! Brian
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Old 02-21-2007, 10:36 AM
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LOL! You got it, Brian!

When I can do 12 in a row and get each one to look like #4, #5 and #9 (above), I'll be ready to start doing them on leather!
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Old 02-21-2007, 02:19 PM
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Looking good Alan! If you're freehanding those notes, you're already leaps and bounds ahead of most people here - mainly me! I don't want to open up a whole new can of worms here, but did you ever think about an embroidery machine?

Alright, I'm jealous already. My Juki is still in the shop until at least Friday, maybe longer (their second tech just got back from vacation and they're running way behind,) and you're already ordering accessories and playing with your Techsew. I got the manual for my machine, finally, so now I know a little bit more about it than I did when I dropped it off at the shop. Oh well - it won't be long before I'll have caught up with you. I've been practicing with the Brother, and I can consistently sew a straight line now, and follow most of the curved and zig-zag patterns my wife throws at me, (she has these wild dreams about me sewing curtains, throw pillows, quilts, and such for her - told her that when she rebuilds the engine in my ElCamino, she has a deal.)

Keep it up man. Like I said before, it's looking good!
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