serger tension knob broken?

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we are new to serging and we recently bought our first serger, an old broth
er 634d.  
we are having an issue with one of the tension knobs and can't seem to find
 any information on it really, but i stumbled across this group in my searc
h and thought i would try reaching out.
the overlooper tension knob doesn't seem to be working... when we turn all  
the other tension knobs they go from feeling very loose to pretty snug, but
 when we turn this one it just seems to go from loose to loose. is it possi
ble to adjust this, or do we need a new tension mechanism, or...?
thank you,
ashley and brent

Re: serger tension knob broken? wrote:
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I don't know your machine,  I hope our Ron Anderson jumps in here.

In the mean time I will offer a few suggestions:

1. Maybe you have already done this, but if not, give the serger a  
thorough cleaning (and lubing if the manual calls for it). When you  
clean it DO NOT USE CANNED AIR , that just blows lint into various  
nooks and crannies where it will gum up the works.  Use a brush and  
small vacuum.  Use dental floss to clean between the tension disks,  
running the floss back and forth several times, replacing the floss  
as it accumulates lint.

2.  Thread the needle(s) and loopers FROM SCRATCH with DIFFERENT  
COLORED THREAD and sew a test. Refer to the threading instructions  
in your manual, and follow them EXACTLY. Sequence matters in  
threading a serger.  Using different thread colors will help you to  
determine which thread (if any) is not properly tensioned. Thread  
with the presser foot UP, then lower the presser foot and pull on  
each one to see if each thread is tensioned.  (Tension is not  
applied to any of the threads until the presser foot is in the  
lowered position)

3. Then, ONLY IF YOU HAVE A SERVICE MANUAL, because it is quite  
complicated, take the tension apparatus apart, and see if you can  
determine how to tighten it. It may have loosened over time, in  
which case perhaps you can adjust it. Or it may just be worn out, in  
which case you will need parts.

There used to be an online "tension repair" link for *sewing  
machine* tensions,   but I just  
tested it and it's 404. ;-(  However, I don't know if it would help  
much with serger tension.  I do take my Bernette MO2-3-4 tension  
apart from time to time when the tenrsion seems off, but it's an  
older fairly uncomplicated serger.

Perhaps you can find something here which will help:

Good luck, HTH,


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