Timing is everything

Last night, I had just 15 or 20 minutes of machine time before I had to start dinner.  Just those few minutes.  A very short time to do anything.

Sydney followed me into the sewing room and wanted to chat.  (Believe me, if you want to talk to your kids, take away their phone.  Suddenly she has whole volumns of stuff to say and we never got to hear it before, because she was too busy sending eleven thousand five hundred texts a month.  I KID YOU NOT!)  Anyway, she was telling me some story that I was half listening too.  And, then something happened while I was only paying half attention to what was going on and I broke a needle. 

I replaced that and rethreaded and my machine wouldn't make a stitch. 

Uh-oh.  That usually means timing.  So, I looked at the timing and I looked up timing the machine on the internet and the instructions just weren't clear.  This is a computerized Pfaff and the only machine I own that I am not comfortable working on.  I rethreaded the top.  That usually helps,  right?  And, I rethreaded the bobbin.  If all else fails, right?  At this point, I am out of time and walk away.  Unusual for my obsessive compulsive self.  Normally, I'd have postponed dinner until I had it figured out.  Or at least had a plan.  The family got lucky.

This morning, I opened up the machine case for the very first time in the 7 years I've had it, just to look inside and see if I could figure out the timing.

Hmmm.  Looks like the hook race is off when compared to photos on the internet.  That would be the timing.  The hook race is starting an extra stitch before the previous stitch is completed and that's a problem.  Timing.

So, I'm studying how the machine works and decide to thread the top.  The thread gets caught on the bobbin spool pin.  That's what it's supposed to do and no second stitch is starting. 

So, I inset the bobbin case without a bobbin.  I make some stitches. but I can't tell if the thread is going over the bobbin case like it should, so I stick my finger out and touch the bobbin case and can feel the thread passing under my finger.  That's what it's supposed to do and no second stitch is starting.

So, I put a bobbin in the bobbin case and I make some stitches without fabric.  And, they're forming the appropriate twists in the threads.  That's what it's supposed to do and no second stitch is starting. 

I put some fabric under the presser foot and take some stitches and they're perfect; perfect tension, perfect length. 

I put a section of my paper piecing under the foot and sew on a new piece.  It goes fine.  No problems. 

I didn't do anything.  My timing problem must not have been the problem.  I don't know what the problem was.  Tension maybe?  But it seems to be resolved.  Timing being what it is, I sure felt lucky that I didn't try to fix it.  I timed my tests just right to avoid possible catastrophe or worse, a hundred dollar machine hospital stay.  And, I didn't do anything more than remove and then reinsert two screws.

But, I'm left with a perplexing mystery.  Why wouldn't it sew last night?

Be well.  My meetings start in a half hour.  It was nice to hear from so many others that feel the way I do about team building. 

I love that the organizer, who basically has 3 days of sitting around a campfire, holding hands and singing Kum-bay-yah planned, announced yesterday that she would never plan a meeting again.  Noboby appreciates it.

Go figger!



Kath said...

the only kind of team building that appeals to me, is a quilty round-robin :-D

lw said...

Must be like when you really need print outs right before a meeting and the copier can sense your desperation and stops working. Subconsiously, you really needed to be listening to Sydney.

I remember team building exercises from the 90's. They wanted us coworkers to hug each other. Yikes!!! What were they thinking?

Elizabeth said...

Maybe it just needed a reset, like when the computer isn't working, so you shut it off and then turn it on again?

xo -E

Susan Entwistle said...

The key is 'computerized Pfaff'. Took me years, but I finally figured out that with anything computerized, (the Cable box, the laptop, my iPhone....) you just turn it off and restart it. 90% of the time, it works fine when you turn it back on. :)