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Question of the Week

Question for the week of March 14, 2005:

Our question this week comes from Kelly:

I would like any tips for using a walking foot. I can't lower my feeddogs on my older machine - is it supposed to sound noisy? When I experimented today, it seemed to work okay at first but then my stitches on the bottom of my piece started skipping so that they were about a 1/4 of an inch.

Kathy in WA :
The cover plate is made to use with a free motion (or darning) foot. You should not use it with the walking foot as it would defeat the purose of the foot. The cover has essentially the saem effect as lowering the feed dogs does on machines that have that option. :
I use my walking foot all the time and although it isn't necessary I do. Yes mine does make some noise but I haven't had alot of trouble with mine. I use it mainly when making those rag time quilts and all that flannel. However I have used it with cottons also and it works great. You just need to go slow and let the feed dogs keep up with the walking foot. You shouldn't have any proble I wouldn't think. Some manufacture's do offer a cover plate one that covers the feed dogs. That is what mine has but I usually don't mess with it. hope that this info help you.
Happy Quilting
Karen Bush :
Kelly- My walking foot is very noisy, too. Especially when I've forgotten to make sure it's attached to the main screw on the needle post. And, have to keep checking that the attachment screw hasn't worked itself loose. That's been my experience, anyway. I don't put my feed dogs down, either. Hope that helps :) kb

Kelly :
Thanks for your response, Kathy. It did turn out that it wasn't attached right. Now it is running like a charm!
Kathy in WA :
You don't need to lower feed dogs to use a walking foot. It is in tandem with the feed dogs to pull the top fabric at the same rate as the bottom. Some walking feet are a bit noisy--they are probably noisier than without one. But if it is excessively noisy, then you may have it on wrong. You have to be sure that the little bar is above or around (depending on the foot.)the screw (the one that attaches the needle.) If it has a forked end, it goes around--if it doesn't, it goes above. I have the walking feet that are made for my machines and they work great. I've heard that generic ones can be difficult to fit and may not work on some older machines. Try rethreading both top and bobbin threads and putting in a new needle. Skipping can sometimes be needle problems.

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