Tips for Use of Schmetz™ Double Needles ©2009
Double needles can be used on any zig zag sewing machine. They have a single shank exactly like a regular needle, which is placed in the machine with flat side back. The stitch that is formed by the double needle looks like two parallel rows of straight stitching on the top of the fabric, and a zig zag stitch on the bottom the fabric.
There are many sizes and types of double needles. The designation on the package shows several things: for example, 2.5/75 stretch designates a double needle where the two needles are spaced 2.5 mm apart and the size of the needles is 75. The stretch designates that the needles are stretch needles which are designed to sew on knit fabrics.
Following a few simple steps when threading your double needle can save you from tangling and breaking threads:
1. Place the spools of thread on your machine so that the threads are separated from each other. Depending on how your spools sit on your machine, you can simply place the spools on so they feed off opposite sides of the spool, or completely separate them. If you need to add a place for an extra spool, you can always slip a drinking straw over the existing spindle and stack spools on top of one another.
2. As you thread the machine, keep the two strands of thread separated in your hand. At the machine tension disk, place one thread on each side.
3. Separate the thread at the last thread guide. If you have a single thread guide right before the needle, put one thread in and leave one thread out. If your machine has separate thread guides for the needles, run thread through both.
4. Thread each needle from front to back. Bring bobbin thread up as usual, and place all threads under the presser foot.
5. As you start to sew, be sure to hold the threads. Some of us have gotten lax about this with the new machines, but it is especially important here.
Double needles may be used with a straight stitch or pattern stitches on your machine. The limit you have on the pattern stitches you choose is determined by several factors: the width of the opening in your throat plate, the width of the double needle you are using, and the width of the pattern stitch. To find the maximum stitch width you can use with any combination, use the following formula:
maximum stitch width of your machine example: 6
minus the width of your double needles -3
equals the maximum width of pattern stitch you may use =3
When stitching with a double needle, you may find that a ridge is created down the center of the needle stitching. If you want to decrease or flatten the ridge, loosen the top tension on the machine. To increase or make the ridge more prominent, you can increase the top tension.