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Old 01-18-2012, 03:00 PM   #43
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Do I read this chart right? Is a larger number needle a heavier needle? And is a larger number thread a heavier thread? Like . . . is #92 thread heavier than #69?

Thread Needle Fabric Weight
V-30 #12 or #14 Fabrics under 1 1/2 ounces
V-46 #14 or #16 Fabrics under 3 ounces
V-69 #16 or #18 Fabrics up to 6 ounces (can use for Sunbrella)
V-92 #18 or #20 Fabrics up to 10 ounces (can use for Sunbrella)
V-138 #20 or #22 Fabrics over 10 ounces. This thread is too heavy for practical use in home sewing machines.


Thanks for the replies. Much appreciated!

Gary
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Old 01-18-2012, 03:20 PM   #44
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I should probably also point out that piping is put there to take the wear on the edges because, once upon a time -- and who knows, perhaps once again, soon -- fabric was a labor intensive, expensive thing that only rich people could afford. You put piping in upholstery to save the main fabric so that, when the piping wore out, you could replace the piping and reuse the expensive fabric.

Since this is no longer quite so true in our post-Industrial age society, it could be argued that bias piping is no longer so important in the case of cushion covers that you may very well decide would need to be changed entirely by the time the piping wore enough to need replacing if you cut the piping on grain.

I've certainly cut piping on-grain for decorative pieces, stage sets, or anything else when I knew design, wear time or budgetary considerations or longevity of the project were appropriate, or in the case of something like Ultra Leather or vinyls when there's no true bias anyway.

Just something to consider. Cutting on grain saves you a bit of cash, and sometimes that's worth trading length of wear.
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Old 01-18-2012, 03:38 PM   #45
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More than you ever wanted to know about thread. There's some handy links at the bottom, too. I'm not sure if those are Tex sizes or manufacturer's sizes, but I'd imagine they are Tex -- double check, though.

A pdf like this one will tell you what size threads (at least for their products) are appropriate for your application. (If you're not using Amefird products, it'll still tell you what's approximately good in other product lines.)
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Old 01-18-2012, 03:41 PM   #46
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Good points. My first projects are lawn chair cushions. I'm using exterior material, so they'll be useful. The first one isn't much more than a pillow cover with a chunk of foam stuffed inside. It looks okay. The machine is too fast for me until I get more practice. I'll be anxious to install the new servo motor.

Plus, I need the zipper feet for the close sewing. I'm waiting for UPS to bring those.
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Old 01-18-2012, 03:51 PM   #47
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zlee View Post
More than you ever wanted to know about thread. There's some handy links at the bottom, too. I'm not sure if those are Tex sizes or manufacturer's sizes, but I'd imagine they are Tex -- double check, though.

A pdf like this one will tell you what size threads (at least for their products) are appropriate for your application. (If you're not using Amefird products, it'll still tell you what's approximately good in other product lines.)

Those are good, Thanks!
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Old 01-18-2012, 03:56 PM   #48
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Oh and another aside: there's no reason to put piping on something if you don't want to, either. Even though it means your fabric is taking the brunt of wear, that saves you even more time and money, especially if it's a bulky or stiff fabric like Ultra Leather.
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Old 01-18-2012, 04:12 PM   #49
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On my living room furniture, there's no piping on the cushions but there is single piping on the frame that's used as a divider between the face and skirt as well as double piping that's used as a staple cover where fabric meets exposed finished hardwood. The cushions are overstuffed with 4" wrapped with 2".
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Old 01-18-2012, 04:29 PM   #50
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Yeah, lots of people don't like feeling the piping on something they're going to sit on for long amounts of time. I don't think I'm going to put it on my dinette cushions for that very reason.
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Old 01-22-2012, 02:41 PM   #51
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New motor and braided piping - pics

I made some progress this week. I ordered a new 3/4 hp servo motor and got it installed. I got right and left zipper feet, double and single piping feet and a few extra bobbins.

Click image for larger version

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So far I wrecked two file folders and a couple chunks of vinyl base practicing sewing. I went shopping for material to practice on and bought some rope piping. Today I made one pillow using a pillow form.

Click image for larger version

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Next I'll make some of my own piping and make some more pillows. Now I wish I had a television in the basement family room where my machine sits. One thing I like about sewing is I can do it sitting down:-)


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Old 01-22-2012, 03:25 PM   #52
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Why is the piping material cut on the bias? Why not use straight cut material?
It is also a question of stretch. Piping needs to curve around corners and the bias cut allows it to do that without wrinkling.

If you take a piece of fabric and pull it on the straight grain, it's pretty tight. If you pull it on the diagonal, along the bias, it stretches a lot. That stretch is what lets the bias tape stretch around corners.

Historical trivia: in the Middle Ages, when time intensive knit leggings were only for the very wealthy nobility, lesser beings made their stretchy leggings by cutting the fabric on the bias.
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Old 01-22-2012, 03:41 PM   #53
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Even more trivial: "trousers" is derived from "trews", which were two separate legs on a string at the waist, which is why it's a pair of trousers but a singular brassiere!
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Old 01-22-2012, 05:49 PM   #54
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Even more trivial: "trousers" is derived from "trews", which were two separate legs on a string at the waist, which is why it's a pair of trousers but a singular brassiere!
Interesting! Thanks! :-)
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Old 01-25-2012, 08:43 PM   #55
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Hi Splitrock, Sorry it has taken so long to get back to you. We've been off Airstreaming for a month. Got to visit Charleston, Savannah, Daytona Beach, Cape Canaveral, Universal Studios, Busch Gardens, and Biloxi!

As for the sewing I do, I repair windsurfing sails and kiteboarding kites. I also do some awning and boat cover work, but only for good friends. I can clear up some of the info about threads. There are many thread size systems throughout the world, but here in the US the V46, V69, and V92 are the common sizes. V46 is usually used for products like sailboat spinakers, parachutes, or kitesurfing kites. Size V69 is the next step heavier and is used for windsurfing sails and some small sailboat sails. It is also used for things like bluejeans. Size V92 is the next step heavier and I like it for some sail work and for some awning and shade seams. Size V138 is the next larger size and I use it for most awning work because I feel the the extra thickness gives more protection against UV damage from the sun. When it comes to sailboat Bimini's and such I like V208. It is the next step larger than V138 and it holds up very well to extreme UV exposure plus wind (flapping) and stress. When I make something like a sail cover, I use V138 and V208 which gives the piece a nice durable nautical look with performance suited for the application.

When it comes to slowing machines down to speeds normal people can use, the servo motor is a big help, but you may also want to use a speed reducer to slow it even more. A speed reducer is just a couple pulleys mounted together similar to the stepped pulleys on a drill press.

Your 206 should work well with Size 19 needles for the V46 thread, Size 20 needles for the V 69, Size 21 needles for the V92, and Size 22 & 23 for the V138 and V208.
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Old 01-26-2012, 10:03 AM   #56
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Hi Bob,

Sounds like you had an interesting trip.

Thanks for the information on the threads and needles. It helps a lot. What's your suggestion for a string for tying buttons?

Do you have any sources for supplies that you'd be willing to share?

Thanks again,

Gary
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