Sewing Machine Jumping and Skipping Stitches

I've some throuble with my vintage Singer sewing machine. It's became unstable, Sometimes it works OK, but other times it jumps and jumps. I hope you'll help me. What do I have to do?


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November 21, 20150 found this helpful

Assuming you've used your manual (and if you don't have the manual you can get a free download at the US Singer site) to be sure you're setting the machine correctly and using the right needle (and sometimes the right needle may still cause skipping because it is an old needle with a blunted tip, minuscule burrs too small to see with the naked eye, etc) and thread for the fabric and stitching you want to do...

Jumping (or skipping) is sometimes caused by a build up of lint and thread fluff in the tension discs. Most vintage Singers have the tension discs on the outside of the machine as part of a dial/knob. If yours are on the outside of the machine, try spritzing some 70-90% isopropyl alcohol on a strip of unwaxed dental floss then run the floss between the discs - yes, just as you would floss your teeth:).


You should see 'grime', lint, and fluff on the floss as you work it between the discs - repeat the spritz and flossing with fresh strips of floss until the floss comes back white and debris free.

Another cause of skipping can be a build up of the same sort of debris in the bobbin casing. You don't give the model of your vintage, so I don't know if your machine has the top drop-in bobbin system, or the front or side load system. Either or, using a torch (flashlight) to examine the area will usually show you if you've got an obstructing-skip causing build up. If you see any, use a small paintbrush (like the ones you get in a watercolours kit), - spritz with the isopropyl then dab the brush in the casing area. Narrow tweezers are another good tool for lint removal.

If those quick-fixes don't help it's time for a visit to a repair tech as the problem could be anything from a worn/broken/seized gear to an overall build up of debris and/or grime (oil attracts grime, lack of oil causes wear-breaking-seizing). There are so many reasons for skipping that again, if the quick fixes above don't help, only a tech will be able to resolve the problem.


Whatever you do - DO NOT use canned air! That will only force those tiny balls of fluff deeper into the machine.

Best luck, I hope this helps and your only problem is a great ball of fluff wanting cleaning out:)

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