The Sewing Machine Doctor specialises in professional repairs, service & maintenance to Sewing Machines, Overlockers, Cover Stitch & Embroidery Machines.
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Welcome >> Facts, Tips & Care >> New Overlocker? >>
Your brand new Overlocker!

Wow, you've just bought your brand new Overlocker! Let's help you look after it.You’ve looked & looked, tried & tested & finally made the decision. Your brand new Overlocker is ready to take pride of place in the sewing room, right next to the freshly cut out project it will take on tomorrow.

But, before you throw yourself enthusiastically into the delights your new friend promises, lets look at some do’s & don’ts with this purchase.

A little time invested now on some basic things & you may just save yourself some grief a little bit further down the track.

Overlocker Do's

DO start with 4 new threads. Always use 4 threads of the same type & denier (thickness). I also recommend that you rotate your thread every now & then. The loopers use roughly 5 metres of thread to every metre the needles use. This will help you to use all spools up at around the same time. If you won’t use much thread, buy smaller spools. Thread can & will dry out as it gets old. 5 years is about the limit of the guaranteed useful life of most threads.

DO use cone holders on the inside of the large cones of thread. This keeps them stable. Remove them however when you are using smaller reels or spools of thread.

DO take up all offers of tuition that your dealer offers. You may know how to sew, you may have used an overlocker for years, but I can guarantee you there will be features & idiosyncrasies of your new machine that will trip you up unless you are shown them. Remember that user error is not covered by any warranty, and some mistakes on overlockers can be very expensive. Make the time to watch & read any supporting books or DVD’s provided with your machine.

DO replace your needles regularly with the exact needle specified. If you are unsure, refer to your book & then print a label with this information & fix it to the machine. Many overlocker problems are caused in the first instance by the wrong needle. Remember that both needles must be replaced together, even if only one has broken or bent.

DO have your pride & joy regularly serviced. Every 12 to 24 months is the recommendation. This enables your technician to nip any developing problems in the bud before they require expensive parts.

Overlocker Dont's

DON’T throw away your box. Your box & the associated packing materials are the best protection for your machine in transit. Overlockers have some fiddly bits on their exterior that are easily broken.

DON’T thread your machine out of sequence. All overlockers have a specific sequence they must thread in. As a rule of thumb, the loopers should be threaded before the needles. If one of the looper threads breaks, remove the thread from the eyes of the needles prior to rethreading the looper. This will save you a lot of frustration & grief.

DON’T assume the worst if your overlocker starts to sew poorly. Make up a checklist of threading, replacing needles & basic checks. Many times it is a basic thing like a missed thread guide that has created the problem.

DON’T cut pins with your knives!! Knives are expensive and must be replaced when this happens. Pin laterally or remember to pull them out as they approach the machine. I am happy to sell you a supply of knives, however I would rather that you didn’t have the frustration!!

Most of all…DO

DO enjoy the many hours of sewing your machine will give you by following the basic do’s & don’ts here. Overlockers are an invaluable time-saver in sewing & in the right hands can produce a fabric work of art!!

Your new overlocker