The first time someone showed me how to clean a bobbin race, I was petrified. Take a screwdriver to my machine?? Is that…legal? Turns out it’s a part of regular sewing machine maintenance- I never knew.
I try to do it after completing a garment, or about once a week. I also clean it carefully before “important” top-stitching or buttonholes because a clean bobbin race produces higher stitch quality.
Before starting the Revolutionary Road dress, I unscrewed my needle plate. See the place for the screw in the top left corner? Gone. New machines will have a factory-tightened screw. That doesn’t mean you aren’t supposed to unscrew it. Persevere.
My regular maintenance fell by the wayside (as so many things did) during my recent stint of “full time” work. Get in there with a small, stiff brush. Many machines include them as part of the accessories packs. An old toothbrush works well, too. Just don’t let your husband catch you putting it back in the bathroom.
All clean. I must resist the urge “blow” the rest of the dust away. My breath has water vapor in it, which can gum up the mechanical parts over time. Use a can of compressed air (useful for electronics, too) to clear away the last flecks of dust. You can also spray air into the undercarriage area around the bobbin race. Watch out for flying dust bunnies.
Bonus points: the little hole in the middle has a sort of wick beneath it. The wick is designed to evenly distribute machine oil where you need it. Use a drop or two every few months and be sure to wipe away the excess.
Hope this is useful!
Long-time readers know I’m a political person. I can’t help myself, I’m a diehard idealist, though I respect the views of cynics. As often as I swear “no politics on the blog,” it comes back.
I know some people down there and wish I could join them. I figured out a way to “occupy” my needles and keep some people warm(ish). I won’t be there but my work will be in a small way. I also hear tell of people teaching other occupiers to knit..
If you live in Brisbane (ahem) and you’d like to meet up for a knit-together (old movies, a glass of wine and yarn) then let me know- I’m thinking Tuesday or Wednesday. Free crochet lesson to anyone who comes.
If you’d like to contribute to the project, leave a comment on the page or email me and I’ll give you an address to send the items to. We’d like to make a flickr stream, so the recipients and the knitters can “meet” each other.