How to Work a Singer Sewing Machine

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Parts of the sewing machine.
Parts of the sewing machine. (Image: quamut.com, thru-hiker.com/ projects/ bobbin_basics.php,)

Once you master a basic Singer sewing machine, you will be able to learn how to operate more complicated models. You can use a basic model Singer sewing machine to make clothes, curtains, quilts, crafts and many other projects.

Things You'll Need

  • Thread
  • Scissors
  • Material

Familiarize yourself with the basic parts of the sewing machine. Thread the machine and bobbin first. Place the spool of thread on the spool pin located on the top of the sewing machine.

Parts for threading the machine.
Parts for threading the machine.

Take the bobbin out of the compartment that slides open under the needle. Remove the bobbin from its case and guide the thread through one of the bobbin's holes. Wind the thread around the bobbin a couple of times going clockwise. Place the bobbin on the bobbin winder that's immediately to the right of the spool pin.

Removing the bobbin for threading.
Removing the bobbin for threading.

Turn the knob inside the balance wheel on the right side of the sewing machine towards you. This locks the machine and keeps the needle from moving while the bobbin winder spins.

Threading the bobbin.
Threading the bobbin.

Slowly press the foot pedal so thread winds around the bobbin. When it is full, stop, cut the thread and remove the bobbin from the winder. Turn the knob inside the balance wheel the opposite direction to unlock it.

The foot pedal operates the machine.
The foot pedal operates the machine.

Place the bobbin back in the bobbin case. Hold the case in your right hand so that the loose end is pointed towards the palm of your right hand. Pull the thread through the thread slot, under the tension spring. Pull 5 inches of thread from the bobbin case. Pull the bobbin case latch out with your finger. Slide the bobbin case into the compartment, lining up the finger on the case with the slot on the shuttle.  

Replacing the bobbin after threading.
Replacing the bobbin after threading.

Guide thread from the spool through the thread guide to the left of the spool pin, then the lower thread guide on the front of the machine. Pull the thread through the thread take-up beside the first thread guide. Thread it through the left side of the needle to finish.

Threading the machine through the guides.
Threading the machine through the guides.

Pull 4 inches of thread through the needle. Hold the thread in your left hand and turn the balance wheel slowly towards you. The needle will go down and catch the thread in the bobbin, before bringing it back up. Place material under the zipper foot and begin sewing.

Tips & Warnings

  • Practice sewing on scrap material.
  • Make sure to use the proper needles for the material you are sewing.

References

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