It's recommended to sharpen your scissors at least twice a year. However, the frequency of sharpening depends on how often you use your scissors and the quality of the scissors. If you use your scissors frequently or if they are low quality, you may need to sharpen them more often.
Here are some signs that your scissors need sharpening?
- The scossors don't cut the right way. You feel they aren't cutting like they used to
- Your scissors are pushing away the fabric.
- It takes a lot more effort to cut through fabric.
Needle size: Needles sizes describe the thickness of the shaft and are typically sized in European and American sizes. Needle thickness increases as the size increases. The first number is the European size followed by a slash and then the American size.
Example: 75/11 is smaller than 80/12
Thread size (weight): Thread diameter decreases as the size number increases.
Example: 30 weight thread has a larger diameter than 40 weight thread
Needle size to thread size: Being that the two are sized opposite, a lower weight thread will typically require a larger needle, and a higher weight thread will therefore require a smaller needle.
Sharps vs. Ball Point
Needle points: Needles come as sharps, ball-point, or universal (slightly rounded), each with a different intended use. Univeral with the slightly rounded point are a jack of all trades needle but master of none. When in doubt you can typically use a universal needle of the correct size for most projects. For cleaner, more refined stitches it is sometimes best to use a sharp or ball-point needle for your specific project. Sharps are best for cleanly piercing densely woven fabrics without resistance, where ball-points are best used on knit fabrics where the needle is sliding between the fabric loops rather than piercing the fabric.
Full cleaning: If you are using your machine daily or weekly, you should consider a full cleaning by a service tech annually. If you only use your machine once or twice a month or less often, a full cleaning should be scheduled bi-annually or sooner.
Oiling your machine: Every machine manufacturer has different guidelines for oiling your machine. However, the basic standard for oiling depends on the amount of use.
daily use = oil weekly
once or twice a week = oil monthly
monthly or a few times every few months = every 3 months
seldom used = every 4 months
In between cleanings, you should do your part to keep the bobbin area and case clean, free of lint and debris. Keep your feed dogs free of lint and build up for the best performance and oil your machine accordingly.
When in doubt, contact your local sewing machine dealer or service technician.
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