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Kenmore 385.18830 Runs in Reverse?

My sewing machine is running in reverse on every stitch setting except for one setting. If I depress the reverse lever it will change the feed dogs

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to forward stitching. When I release the lever it is back to reverse. What could be causing this? What do I need to check? And how will I fix it without an outrageous service charge.
Thanks.

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November 10, 20200 found this helpful

In a lot of cases, this is caused by dirt buildup in the bobbin area of the machine. A good cleaning is necessary to correct this problem. If this is not helping out the next step is to check the setting control on your machine and make sure they are moving correctly. If you can change the setting to zig-zag or even the stitch size of the machine. If you can not change any of the settings and you are not seeing the feed dog move at all when you switch setting there can be an issue with the setting control or the arm inside the machine that moves the needle position. In some cases, this can be fixed with a little cleaning and a drop of oil. In other cases, the machine needs to go to the repair shop and have the pieces changed.

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November 11, 20200 found this helpful

Bobbin area is clean. I can change to any stitch type or stitch size.
The feed dogs move, just in reverse. I hold the reverse switch/lever down and the feed dogs start moving in the correct direction.

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But once I let go of the reverse switch/lever they immediately start going in reverse again.

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November 12, 20200 found this helpful

I have not had this problem but from research it appears there could be several reasons for your machine acting this way.
It seems one problem is a spring has slipped or broken but it sounds a little complicated to repair so it would be better to read instructions from machine techs who know how to do it.
Since this is a Kenmore you might want to ask a Sears tech first. They are usually very helpful when I contact them but not sure about hours and such so check in your area.
www.service-center-locator.com/.../sears-service-center.htm

Here are a couple of sites that offer methods to try:
www.fixya.com/.../t22677949-sears_kenmore_sewing_machine_model

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sewingmachinebuffs.com/.../

There several sewing machine forums and it's always a good idea to belong to one or two of these as these members can help you with any kind of sewing or machine problem. Most of these members are really good and, of course, they know what questions to ask to get to the real problem.
You will have to join the group but I do not think you'll regret this action. Post your question to more than one group.
www.quiltingboard.com/.../
groups.io/.../vintagesewingmachinerepair
www.facebook.com/.../

Here is a link to a free manual - sorry but sometimes it works and other times not so good.

www.manualslib.com/.../Kenmore-385-18830-7762340.html

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November 13, 20200 found this helpful

Maybe you can tame the 'possessed' and turn it into a good thing.

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I love the forums as there is so much information on each one not only about repairs but just useful information.
Try one out.

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November 13, 20200 found this helpful

Yesterday I noticed another thing it does. I get the machine running and while it is running I change the stitch length dial. The dogs will change directions as I turn it. It will go from reverse direction to forward direction then back again. In some positions, and not changing the stitch length, they will go backwards about 3 rotations then change to forward for a rotation. Then it repeats that cycle.
Im beginning to think its possessed.
And thanks for all the time you have given me on this problem.

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