Author Topic: Sewing Machine Issue---Singer Protege 2639  (Read 11427 times)

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Offline Tim

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Sewing Machine Issue---Singer Protege 2639
« on: December 30, 2008, 10:57:51 PM »
Hi everybody, I'm new to the forum here. If I am posting in the wrong section I apologize, but this looked like the most appropriate place for this. I bought my girlfriend a Singer Protege 2639 ( http://www.singerco.com/accessories/manuals.html ) from Target a year ago for Christmas since she had expressed interest in learning the trade as a hobby. Neither one of us has had much time or need to use the machine until recently, I tore a nice big hole in my best pair of jeans. I went through the motions in the instruction manual learning the adjustments and settings of the machine, threading it, and attempting to use it. My first attempts were pretty bad, crooked stitches, overlapping stitches, stitches spread apart too far, etc. I also kept having problems with the threads bird nesting on me. Up until this point I figured I just wasn't skilled enough to feed the fabric properly. But now worse than that, the needle won't catch the bobbin thread. I switched out the needle with another from the same pack in case it was bent, messed with the tension knob for a bit, to no avail. There is no timing belt. I took the cover off the area where the bobbin goes, and there is a wheel that rotates around it in time with the needle, there is a section of this wheel that has a hook and looks like its meant to catch the spool thread, wrap it around, grab the bobbin thread on the upstroke, But it's not catching the spool thread from the needle. I'm stuck as to what the issue could be. If you think pictures would help let me know, I'll upload some.

Thanks in advance for any help.

Offline BeeBee

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Re: Sewing Machine Issue---Singer Protege 2639
« Reply #1 on: December 30, 2008, 11:15:57 PM »
Are you sure the needle is inserted correctly?  Usually the flat side goes to the back, but confirm with your manual.

Offline Tim

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Re: Sewing Machine Issue---Singer Protege 2639
« Reply #2 on: December 30, 2008, 11:20:30 PM »
Yes the manual states flat side towards the back, that's how its installed.

Offline Sew-Classic

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Re: Sewing Machine Issue---Singer Protege 2639
« Reply #3 on: December 31, 2008, 12:39:37 AM »
Take all of the thread out of the machine.  Take the new needle out of the machine and get a different one out of the pack. Make sure the needle is all the way up into the clamp.  Methodically re-thread everything according to the manual.  Be certain to thread the upper portion with the PRESSER FOOT UP until you get to the needle.   Try a few test stitches on some light to medium weight cotton (not a knit, a woven). 
I do have a more thorough guide to dealing with thread nests on my blog:

Thread Nests, Wads, Bunches, Knots, Loops & Tangles Under the Fabric in the Bobbin Area- How to fix it

Quote
I just wasn't skilled enough to feed the fabric properly.
Let the machine feed the fabric, you just guide. Driver's Ed for Sewing Machines


It has been my experience that most machines don't get knocked out of time all that often or easily.  BUT, the new, cheaper, discount store sewing machine are more prone to it than other machines.  Nonetheless, the KISS principle should always apply- Keep It Simple Stupid.  This is just a little acronym that helps remind me to exhaust ALL of the possible simple solutions long before jumping to the conclusion that something major is wrong.  More often than not, it's something simple anyhow.

Sometimes just walking away for a few hours will help you see what needs to be done.


« Last Edit: December 31, 2008, 12:41:13 AM by Sew-Classic »
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Offline Liana

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Re: Sewing Machine Issue---Singer Protege 2639
« Reply #4 on: December 31, 2008, 12:58:12 AM »
Are you bringing the bobbin thread up to the top before you begin stitching?  Holding the end of the needle thread, take one stitch, and when the needle is all or almost all the way back up, pull carefully on the tail, holding the thread above the needle so you aren't pulling more off the spool.  This should bring the bobbin thread up with the top thread.  Grasp the end of both threads and put them toward the back.  When you begin sewing, hold the tails gently so they do not pull back into the bobbin area.  Also, don't try to begin sewing on the very edge of the fabric.  Give yourself a good 1/2" to an inch from the edge to where the needle will begin.  I like to begin by lowering my needle, then begin stitching, holding the tails until you are going.  This gives you an exact start, and you're more likely to stitch on the line you want to.

To practice straight sewing, or curves, get some paper with lines and draw some curves too, unthread the needle and go at it.  :)  Be sure to watch the front end of the presser foot.  If you try to watch the needle, it's already too late.

HTH! :)

Offline Liana

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Re: Sewing Machine Issue---Singer Protege 2639
« Reply #5 on: December 31, 2008, 12:59:58 AM »
Sorry if this is way too basic for you, but you do know that you can do one stitch at a time by turning the flywheel?  Turn it toward you, not back.  Speed is not your friend when you're beginning.  :)

Offline Tim

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Re: Sewing Machine Issue---Singer Protege 2639
« Reply #6 on: December 31, 2008, 01:00:08 AM »
OK, I cut the thread at the spool, emptied the bobbin, refilled the bobbin, installed the bobbin, installed a new needle, threaded the spool, and I am having the same issue. It tells me to turn the hand wheel to cycle the needle, and it should come up with a loop from the bobbin. There is no loop though. If I full speed the foot pedal for a few seconds it will eventually catch. But that has got to be a failure to success ratio of 20-50:1. I'm pretty sure doing these steps until this point correctly because I referenced the manual again and have successfully threaded the machine ~4 times prior to this issue.

Offline Tim

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Re: Sewing Machine Issue---Singer Protege 2639
« Reply #7 on: December 31, 2008, 01:05:34 AM »
What happens if you turn the flywheel the wrong way?

Offline Liana

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Re: Sewing Machine Issue---Singer Protege 2639
« Reply #8 on: December 31, 2008, 01:10:47 AM »
Well, it won't work, and you'll have lots of snarled up thread, and you could knock something out of line.  I was just always warned NOT to turn it the wrong way. 

(Of course, sergers go the other way, isn't that helpful?  ::) )

Offline Tim

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Re: Sewing Machine Issue---Singer Protege 2639
« Reply #9 on: December 31, 2008, 01:13:41 AM »
http://blog.sew-classic.com/2008/11/12/resources-for-diy-sewing-machine-repair--maintenance.aspx

About halfway down that page is an animation of a stitch forming. I can see that happening in my machine, but the little hook on the wheel circling the bobbin is not catching the thread from the needle.

Offline Sew-Classic

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Re: Sewing Machine Issue---Singer Protege 2639
« Reply #10 on: December 31, 2008, 01:15:29 AM »

(Of course, sergers go the other way, isn't that helpful?  ::) )


The handwheel on my serger turns the same direction as my sewing machines.  The
Blind stitch machne- that one is backwards.  ;D
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Offline Liana

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Re: Sewing Machine Issue---Singer Protege 2639
« Reply #11 on: December 31, 2008, 01:18:40 AM »
What kind of needle and what kind of thread are you using?  Are you leaving a tail of thread coming out of your bobbin when you insert it?  It's unusual that it won't catch the needle thread at all with the hook.  You say you can bring up the bobbin thread once in a while if you floor it, so it must be catching it some of the time.  If you're watching closely, is there a loop of thread formed once the needle goes down, so that there's something for the hook to grab?  

Offline Sew-Classic

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Re: Sewing Machine Issue---Singer Protege 2639
« Reply #12 on: December 31, 2008, 01:19:21 AM »
http://blog.sew-classic.com/2008/11/12/resources-for-diy-sewing-machine-repair--maintenance.aspx

About halfway down that page is an animation of a stitch forming. I can see that happening in my machine, but the little hook on the wheel circling the bobbin is not catching the thread from the needle.

You can visually check the timing without changing anything or using any tools.  Go back to that  page on my blog and click on the link for "Maintenance, troubleshooting and repair info including sewing machine timing information from Sewusa.com "  They have some diagrams for checking the timing.

Are you following Liana's suggestion:
Quote
Holding the end of the needle thread, take one stitch, and when the needle is all or almost all the way back up, pull carefully on the tail, holding the thread above the needle so you aren't pulling more off the spool.  This should bring the bobbin thread up with the top thread.
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Offline Liana

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Re: Sewing Machine Issue---Singer Protege 2639
« Reply #13 on: December 31, 2008, 01:20:27 AM »

The handwheel on my serger turns the same direction as my sewing machines.  The
Blind stitch machne- that one is backwards.  ;D

Oh goody!  :P  My serger is old and pretty industrially aimed.  I guess they've since reversed the flywheels so it's more natural to home-sewers.  I know I have to stop and think before I turn the wheel on the serger.  

Edited to note that I'm not criticising you with my "Oh goody".  I'm just resigned to the fact that once again, the manufacturers are making things confusing, at least for me.   ;D  I would always bow to your machine expertise.  :)
« Last Edit: December 31, 2008, 01:47:21 AM by Liana »

Offline Tim

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Re: Sewing Machine Issue---Singer Protege 2639
« Reply #14 on: December 31, 2008, 01:28:01 AM »
I'm using Singer Denim/Jeans Needles Style 2026 Size 100/16, and Singer Blue Jean thread. If I take the cover off the bobbin area and watch it while I turn the hand wheel, with me holding the thread firmly (so that it actually unwinds the spool as it moves down) no loop forms. If I leave the thread hanging freely, I do see a loop form but it is not catching on the hook.

Offline Liana

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Re: Sewing Machine Issue---Singer Protege 2639
« Reply #15 on: December 31, 2008, 01:37:59 AM »
With your presser foot down, if you pull gently on the needle thread, does it pull evenly with a little tugging, or is it very tight?  Or loose?  You should be able to pull thread out, but there should be some resistance. 

When you leave the tail loose, and it forms a loop but won't catch, is it possible that it's pulling the end clear through and coming loose that way?  Is your bobbin in the right way, and is the bobbin thread coming from the correct direction?  Are you absolutely sure you are threading every single place correctly?  Often a tiny variation can make all the difference.

Sorry I can't come up with a magic fix for you.  Is your thread kind of thick?  I'm not familiar withe Singer jeans thread, but usually jeans threads are pretty heavy.  Do you have the same thing in the bobbin?  Is your bobbin wound neatly or does it look loose and messy?  Your needle is threaded front to back?  (Grasping at straws here....)  :)

Offline Tim

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Re: Sewing Machine Issue---Singer Protege 2639
« Reply #16 on: December 31, 2008, 01:57:49 AM »
I'm leaving about 6" of tail on the spool thread when I try to catch the bobbin thread and bring it up. I lowered the pressure foot and pulled steadily on the tread, I tried this at different tensions to see how they felt. The higher tensions hurt my hand. I'm positive I have threaded the spool and bobbin correctly. The thread doesn't seem overly thick. And it should be a match to the needle. Yes I used the same thread to fill the bobbin. The bobbin looks nice and neat. The needle is thread front to back.

I might have found another symptom of my issue here. While I was hand turning it I heard a clicking sound every couple of cycles, so I took the bobbin and bobbin holster out of the machine, and there is a little groove in the plastic inside the hooked thread catchment wheel where the needle is A) coming down too far, or B) coming down too early. I doubt Its coming down too far because The needle height set screw is drilled in place, I can't adjust it without taking it completely. Anyone ever done that? So it looks like it must be a timing issue, in which case great, because I'm not throwing $85 at someone to do 10 Min's worth of work, And I don't find detailed instructions on doing these adjustments for this machine.

Offline Sew-Classic

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Re: Sewing Machine Issue---Singer Protege 2639
« Reply #17 on: December 31, 2008, 02:12:01 AM »
There are some groves in the horizontal plastic bobbin holders by design.  If you remove the needle and have the bobbin holder in place, is it still clicking?  If so, either you do not have the bobbin holder inserted and seated correctly (VERY common), or it is warped (not so common especially on a machine that has seen little use and is only 1 year old.

Now, if you got a big thread tangle in there (which you said you did) it is highly possible that the bobbin case got pulled out out of it's original, properly seated postion. 
This would case clicks and snags and all manner of headaches.  No tools required to fix this either.  Just carefully follow the instructions in the manual for re-inserting the bobbin holder/case.  It's in the cleaning/maintenance section.

ETA: Visual check of the needle bar depth - turn the handwheel until the needle is at it's LOWEST point.  As you continue to turn, and the needle is raised 3/32" an inch from this low point, the tip of the hook should be just behind the needle with the bottom of the eye about 1/16" above the hook.  Just eye ball it at this point. if it looks close, the needle depth is most likely NOT the issue and the improperly seated bobbin case is.
« Last Edit: December 31, 2008, 02:18:19 AM by Sew-Classic »
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Offline Liana

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Re: Sewing Machine Issue---Singer Protege 2639
« Reply #18 on: December 31, 2008, 02:41:31 AM »
From what you and Jenny are saying, I am assuming you have a bobbin case that you insert the bobbin into and then put the case into the race? 

Seating the bobbin case incorrectly is very easy to do, even if you're being careful.  It's a matter of getting used to how it feels when it's correct.  I had a little trouble with my new Pfaff to begin with because the little flipper/handle was on the opposite side from what I've used before, and it felt different.  Even though I've sewn for many years on lots of different machines, they're all a little different.

Make sure you're holding the little flipper/handle out as straight as it will go.  Push the case into the race, and when it feels like it's in all the way, while you're still holding the handle, give it a little shimmy to the right and left just to make sure it's really seated in all the way and in the correct spot.  You may notice that it will suddenly go in a tiny bit further when you turn it slightly one way or the other.  Eventually, you will know the correct spot and depth just by feel.
« Last Edit: December 31, 2008, 02:45:39 AM by Liana »

Offline Tim

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Re: Sewing Machine Issue---Singer Protege 2639
« Reply #19 on: December 31, 2008, 02:45:27 AM »
No The needle isn't making contact with the bobbin-holder. It's making contact with the bobbin-holder holder. The wheel that spins around catching the spool thread and wrapping it around the bobbin thread it actually part of a seat that the bobbin holder slides into. There is plastic lining part of the bottom, and there is a groove the needle put in it, it's making the clicking noise and I can see it dragging. I'll upload photos ASAP. Probably an hour or so before I can use a better camera. My 3mp got all fuzzy up close on those details.

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Re: Sewing Machine Issue---Singer Protege 2639
« Reply #20 on: December 31, 2008, 02:53:00 AM »
Lianna, His machine has a drop in bobbin.  The bobbin holder goes in first and then the bobbin is inserted.

Tim,  If you are 20000% certain that you have the needle ALL the way  up into the clamp, but the tip of the needle is hitting the bottom of the race (part that the bobbin case/holder is seated into, then it could be that the needle bar is slightly low.  Go back and do the visual inspection that I outlined earlier.   You will NOT find model specific instructions on the net for your machine on how to adjust the needle bar depth, only generic ones. 
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Offline Liana

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Re: Sewing Machine Issue---Singer Protege 2639
« Reply #21 on: December 31, 2008, 02:56:14 AM »
Lianna, His machine has a drop in bobbin.  The bobbin holder goes in first and then the bobbin is inserted.


Okay.  Never mind!  ;D

Offline DeniseM

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Re: Sewing Machine Issue---Singer Protege 2639
« Reply #22 on: December 31, 2008, 02:37:12 PM »
Tim, unfortunately, your experience with this type of machine isn't unusual. Tension is one of the trickiest things to adjust. I don't know what you paid for the machine but I doubt the store will take it back or help you. I would find a dealer and see if they can adjust it. They will charge a fee but it's probably worth it if they can get the machine to work and you can get some use out of it. It could be something actually caught in the bobbin mechanism, a piece of lint or plastic or packing material. Or you could simply be threading it wrong, and that is usually the cause of nesting.

What a sweetheart you are to buy your girfriend a sewing machine. Once you've gone step by step through the advice you are getting here, if it doesn't work, see if a dealer can't help you adjust the tension. If you decide to upgrade at some point, please consider going to a reputable dealer. You can get a nice inexpensive machine, used or new, and they'll service it for you.

Offline Karen C

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Re: Sewing Machine Issue---Singer Protege 2639
« Reply #23 on: December 31, 2008, 02:44:45 PM »
If the needle is hitting the case it is not in correctly.  There is usually a spot on the right side where it goes in that if you are not careful you can get it on the wrong side.  Take out the bobbin and insert the bobbin case.  Turn the wheel to lower the needle to make sure it is not hitting.

If it has been hitting running at speed, the case may be damaged and need to be replaced.

Then, make sure you have the bobbin in correctly.  You mentioned nesting.  A backward bobbin is usually the cause.

For a drop in bobbin case the bobbin goes in with the thread going counter clockwise and the pull back clockwise in the little arm on the front of the botton case.

Leave at least 6 inches for the top thread to catch.

« Last Edit: December 31, 2008, 05:32:31 PM by Karen C »

Offline JKL

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Re: Sewing Machine Issue---Singer Protege 2639
« Reply #24 on: September 14, 2011, 01:16:42 AM »
Did you find a solution to your problem? I am having the exact same problem with the same machine. Please help!

 

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