Favorite Serger Stitch SURVEY

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1.  What is your favorite serger "stitch", serger "feature" and/or
serger "foot", and how have you been using this?

2.  How long did it take for you to get comfortable with using your
serger?

3.  Have you taken a class on how-to use your serger?  Or have you
taught yourself how to use your machine?



I would like to use your answers for a beginner serging class I will
be teaching this spring.  Thanks!

Re: Favorite Serger Stitch SURVEY


shereesews wrote:
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Straight stitch at 1/4 inch for quilts.  I don't use the others with the
exception of satin stitch.
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two lessons and I have videos.
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I have videos that were produced by an expert serger plus those that
come from Bernina
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Re: Favorite Serger Stitch SURVEY
snipped-for-privacy@comcast.net (shereesews) wrote:

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I use the basic foot, and usually only one needle.  Granted, I'm
usually sewing knits or finishing seams/hem allowances, so I don't
need the strength of two needle threads.  

(I've got a basic serger, that does 3/4 thread stitches, and can be
adjusted for wide or narrow seam, rolled hem is by changing foot and
needle plate.)

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I don't remember....I've had it for 15 years now.  I think it took
about 10 hours of just using it to be comfortable with it and all that
it did.

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Never took a class -- the shop never scheduled one when I could take
it (not their fault...my work schedule kept changing, so that when
they were offering day classes I was working days; when they offered
evening classes, I was working second shift), until I'd had it for 6
months, by which point I'd figured it out (*).

jenn

(*)I got the serger to work on my wedding dress, and by the time I'd
had it for 6 months, I'd finished the dress....
--
Jenn Ridley
snipped-for-privacy@chartermi.net

Re: Favorite Serger Stitch SURVEY

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I use the basic 4 thread stitch for finishing edges and sewing seams at the
same time.   I have a basic serger ( simplicity frontier 390) so it doesn't
have too many special features. I bought it to finish edges and to speed up
sewing, and  that is exactly how I use it.  I thought when I bought it that
it would be a good beginners machine and that down the road I could upgrade,
but  since I don't even use the extra feet it came with I see no need to
upgrade to a machine that has more feet available or more stitches. A
coverstitch might be nice someday, but  I did the math and it really doesn't
pay to make t-shirts, so I don't think it would be a sound investment on my
part.


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 A few days. I had to make lots of little samples on different fabrics and
play with tensions and figure out how to switch to 2 or 3 thread modes etc.
Every time I try a new fabric though it is a learning experience, but I keep
a notebook with swatches and notes on the settings used so I don't have to
teach myself the same thing twice.

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No class was available. I  watched the video, studied the manual and bought
a bunch of used books on eBay .
I also asked a lot of questions on the internet of people who already had
sergers.


Rebecca



Re: Favorite Serger Stitch SURVEY
Ditto, ditto, ditto!  I have the same serger.  I *would* be using the 4
thread, but I lost the little screw that holds the second needle in
(darnit!).  I even use mine for semi-commercial work, in my sewing business,
and I love how it can handle really thick layers of fabric (I often do 3
layers of sherpa and polarfleece).  I use the three thread overlock stitch
for everything (but on pants, I always have to go back and reinforce the
crotch seam with a straight stitch on my regular sewing machine).

It took me about three days to get it all figured out, though I still
haven't used the rolled hem (I've had it for a little over a year), or the
two thread function (didn't even know it did that!).  I've got it really
well figured out for what I use it for, though ;o)  I don't see a need to
upgrade in the future, as this one has had heavy use, and it has never even
needed serviced :o)

--
Kyla
"Just remember...if the world didn't suck, we'd all fall off."


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Re: Favorite Serger Stitch SURVEY

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Have you tried calling simplicity or sending them an e-mail? You should be
able to replace the screw.

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Please tell me how you do this? I was trying to work with 2 layers  of
Malden mills shearling polar fleece ( its  faux fur on one side of the
fabric and regular fleece on the other side ) and it was a nightmare. It was
so thick I had a nearly impossible time getting the machine adjusted for it,
and I am not happy with the results. :o(


 > (but on pants, I always have to go back and reinforce the
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I do that too.  I sew that area on the regular machine but then use a 4
thread stitch on the edges, and  do the side seams by serger only.

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I got it going on some gauze, but its tricky.

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You use  that little wire bit in the plastic vial.  The instruction for
switching it to 2 thread in the manual aren't clear though. If  you ever
decide to try it and have a problem, e-mail me off list and I'll try to
help. I found a picture in another book that helped me figure it out. I can
scan it and send it to you.

Rebecca



Re: Favorite Serger Stitch SURVEY
Hehehe...I know what MM shearling is!  I have a ROLL of it in my son's
closest right now ;o)  I've serged two layers of it with no problem.  I just
make sure the stitch width is as wide as it goes, and use a 3-thread stitch.
Only use the needle in the left position, to get the widest stitch possible
(stitch width should be proportionate to fabric thickness-wider for thicker,
narrower for thinner :o).

I know I can probably find a replacement screw, but we're POOR right now,
LOL, and I haven't even begun to try.

--
Kyla (making dinner)
"Just remember...if the world didn't suck, we'd all fall off."



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Re: Favorite Serger Stitch SURVEY
Kyla scribbled on a scrap of paper:
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 I bet you could buy a screw from Rom for some change off the floor of your
car  and a postage stamp.

Penny



Re: Favorite Serger Stitch SURVEY
NYC-FMS scribbled on a scrap of paper:
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Ron of A1 Sewing Machines, a poster here has parts, you should contact him.

Penny



Re: Favorite Serger Stitch SURVEY
Or even easier, a hradware store. It is rare that a manufacturer uses a
custom thread.
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Re: Favorite Serger Stitch SURVEY
You think?  It's an itty bitty thing, with a point on the end, and a hole on
the other for the allen wrench to go in.  I didn't think they would have
anything like that at a hardware store, but I will look.

Funny thing about this little screw is, I lost it once before.  It's only
about 3/16" long, and it was gone for about 7 months.  Then, one day, I
FOUND it.  So bizarre; never thought I would be able to find something that
small!  It was under my sewing cabinet, held hostage by a dust bunny ;o)
Then, I put it safely on my grabbit, because I could not find my allen
wrench (it was in my sewing machine box, rather than my serger box *grr*).
went back a day later, when I found the wrench, and the little screw had
escaped again :o(

--
Kyla
"Just remember...if the world didn't suck, we'd all fall off."


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Re: Favorite Serger Stitch SURVEY
Standard set screw. Something like Home Depot might even have it but
doubtful. Find a real hardware store and they will.
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on
that
news:PApLb.97490$>
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should



Re: Favorite Serger Stitch SURVEY
Kyla wrote:

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If it's a steel screw, try one of those strong magnet
wands.  I have two kinds - one that looks sort of like a
hairbrush, and another that is like a car radio antenna.
Both are useful.

If all else fails, you might have a better chance of
finding a replacement at an auto parts store.  Try Ron
first - it's always good to keep it as simple as possible.
--

Joanne @ stitches @ singerlady.reno.nv.us
http://members.tripod.com/~bernardschopen /
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Re: Favorite Serger Stitch SURVEY
Pogonip scribbled on a scrap of paper:
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yes let's do give Ron  a plug:
http://www.a1sewingmachine.com/index.html

I have order odd parts from him and the price is right, delivery fast.  I
have a list I'm making for the next order....



Re: Favorite Serger Stitch SURVEY
Penny S wrote:
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And he keeps odd bits for older machines, too - like bobbins and stitch
plates for an 1888 Singer!
--
Kate  XXXXXX
Lady Catherine, Wardrobe Mistress of the Chocolate Buttons
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Re: Favorite Serger Stitch SURVEY


OOOh - I LIKE these!  :)

shereesews wrote:
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Rolled hem!  NOT the one I use most - that's the 4 thread seam - but the
one that gives me that 'Oooh, nice!' feeling when I do it!  It takes
about half a minute to convert from 4 thread serged seam to rolled hem
on my machine.  I use it for edging/hemming all sorts of light weight
stuff, from fancy thread edges on cotton skirts (great for circular
skirts!), to silk chiffon (take a look at some of my bridal projects on
the web site).
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About 10 minutes!  But remember, I was already a very experienced sewer,
used to using fast machines.  It took a little longer to get used to the
4 threads and the faster pace of the new machine when I bought it.
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Years ago, when I got the first one, yes...  I could use a
refresher/more advanced course.
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Best of luck!  I love teaching sewing stuff.

--
Kate  XXXXXX
Lady Catherine, Wardrobe Mistress of the Chocolate Buttons
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Re: Favorite Serger Stitch SURVEY
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My FAV is the rolled hem.  I just love what it can do to a project.
It is so much my favourite that I purchased a second back up serger
so I could leave on the rolled hem permanently.  FOOT -- my FAV is the
piping foot.  I just love what corded piping/welting can do for a garment.

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Oh my,
The very first serger I purchased was a Brother 5-thread w/coverstitch.
Believe it or not but the coverstitch threading was *much* easier than the
regular.  I never really got comfortable with that serger - but that was the
fault of the serger - it was a lemon!  I have since taken classes on the
Hus/Viking 5 thread w/coverstitch and it is a DREAM machine!!(On my wish list)
After I purchased a serger that worked correctly it took me about 2-3 hours
to really feel comfortable with the machine.  I worked for a while in a
garment factory so tend to sew at breakneck speed and the ZOOM of
the serger speed was nice for me.

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Yes, when I could not get the Brother to work right for me I took a class and
that is when I found out the Brother was faulty BUT I also learned during that
class many of the things a serger can do for you.  I have since purchased every
issue of the Serger newsletter that I can find on eBay - they are a BIG part of
my reference library.

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Have fun with the class - I wish I had an **advanced** serger class available
to me.  The only dealership in this town that has an advanced class is
the Bernina dealer and they will only let you come if you have a Bernina serger.

I would like to say that I do not see what the "big problem" is with threading.
Once I learned how to thread (not pull through) I found that it goes rather fast.
PLEASE teach your students to thread the serger because if they are ever
doing the pull-through and one thread breaks they will need to do
"manual" threading.  I find that if you take off the plate so you can
really see into the works - threading the lower looper is not that big a deal.
 I use tweezers and a magnifying glass.
The lady who taught my serger class (and who KNEW my Brother was a lemon)
first had us open the sergers completely so we could see the "WORKS".
When one of the students pulled too hard on her project -- thus causing
her lower looper to malfunction -- this teacher opened the machine
and GENTLY bent the lower looper back into position and that student was
able to  complete the class.  She did advise the student to take her serger
in to let the repair man take a look see. Next class that lady said her
repairman told her the teacher's repair was in good form and
he did not need to do anymore.

There is also as generic Serger Repair Manual available on the market - It will
not be helpful for the
newer computerized models or many of the TOL sergers -- but for the
normal 2/3/4 thread sergers it is a wonderful tool.

Sun



Re: Favorite Serger Stitch SURVEY
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Actually now that I've purchased a Viking 2-5 thread serger my old Sears 3-4
thread and I are awfully cozy.

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the new machine I've forgotten how to do it by the time I get home.  I have to
work these things out by myself when I'm very calm and won't get too
frustrated!


Re: Favorite Serger Stitch SURVEY
Hi everyone!  Your answers have been very enlightning!  At the end of
the month, I will post a compilation in either MSExcel or AcrobatPDF
format that you can download of these results.  Thanks for your input,
this will be a helpful tool for my beginner serging students.
ShereeSews in M!ch!gan

1.  My favorite feature is "Differential Feed" and I can't imagine
getting full use out any serger that doesn't have this helpful
feature.  I find myself adjusting it for each and every fabric type I
feed into my serger.  What a great invention and tool DF is for a
serger!  Decorative flatlocking really gets me excited to use my
pretty specialty threads!

2.  About one full year of "no-fear" playing around, experimenting,
and keeping serged samples with written records on file cards.  Now,
nine years later, I am trying to locate all the specialty feet for my
Huskylock 1001L by Viking.

3.  I never took a class at my dealer, (no time, too far to drive)
thankfully I can read a manual and understand it.  But I have taken
several sewing guild hands-on serging seminars and learned a lot of
extra bonus tips from them.  I self-teach myself by purchasing plenty
of serger related books and trying-out adventurous stuff!

Re: Favorite Serger Stitch SURVEY
http://home.comcast.net/~shereesews/Usenet_Serger_Survey_2004.pdf

I have put together a PDF file of the responses received so far, the
link is listed above for you to copy and paste into your browser.  If
you would like to be included, please respond to the main thread of
this serger survey and in a few weeks I will update the PDF file to
include your answers.

Please keep answers brief and to the point!  Many Thanks!
ShereeSews in Michigan

http://home.comcast.net/~shereesews/Usenet_Serger_Survey_2004.pdf



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