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Reverse Button on Sewing Machine Stuck

The button that you press in to make the machine sew backwards is stuck. How do I fix this problem without taking the machine apart?

By happy sewer from NC

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March 22, 20101 found this helpful

Make sure that the machine is in straight stitch forward and the stitch length is the highest level that it can go. If that doesn't make it go forward, you will have to use the old hair dryer trick. Take the top lid of the machine off and heat the inside with a heated hairdryer. Work the stitch length and the reverse until it frees up. Good luck.

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March 25, 20100 found this helpful

You might try just a drop of machine oil on the top of the button. Lay your machine on it's back so the oil will run in around the button and try to work it.

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Anonymous Flag
January 18, 20160 found this helpful

If your machine is a Pfaff, this may be the problem. Underneath many of the 1980s to 2000 Pfaff Sewing Machines, like my Pfaff 939 Hobbymatic, there is a metal pivoting rod, around which, the plastic & pvc parts which control stitch length & reverse, are supposed to pivot. Over time, particularly if exposed to much heat & humidity, a tiny bit of oil either works its way out of the materials themselves, or migrates to the area, & dries to a sticky resin, gluing them firmly to the pivot rod. To check if this is the problem, all you have to do, is remove the bottom of the machine, & under the motor, in the "pillar" of the machine, you will see the tiny black set screw, which holds the rod in place. If you loosen the set screw at all, the rod suddenly begins to pivot, allowing the lever which controls reverse, & stitch length, to pivot the rod, so it seems to fix the problem.

It is not fixed, but you have located the exact spot which needs cleaned! If you just loosen the set screw, over time, the rod will work out of the machine frame, & could damage the machine, so you can t just loosen the set screw. You have to disengage the lower piece of the reverse spring, from the bottom of the plastic piece it is hooked to, then remove the C clips on the rod, & the set screw far enough, that you can remove the plastic pieces from the rod completely. The rod can stay in the machine frame, you can use a Qtip with alcohol, to clean the resin off the rod, push it back & forth through the frame if necessary, to get to all of it.

Use another Qtip in alcohol to clean inside the tube area of the 2 pivoting plastic parts, & when they are clean, replace them on the rod, & make sure they pivot freely, before putting everything back together. If they pivot completely freely, go ahead & replace everything back in the machine, making sure you get the gears back in the correct positions, & the "finger" that sets into the helical groove in the plastic wheel, which controls the stitch length & the reverse lever. Once you are sure everything is properly aligned, replace the C clips on the pivot bar, tighten the set screw, then reattach the lower section of the spring, on the plastic piece that controls stitch length. Sorry, I don t know better technical terms, but that s the basic reason these great machines get stuck in reverse! Do NOT lubricate this area! That will cause the same exact problem, when it dries up! Happy Sewing!

Becky

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