Embroidery Term: Prewound Bobbin

comments (1) July 26th, 2008     

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JenniferStern Jennifer Stern, contributor
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Even though I have some misgivings about using a prewound bobbin, I havent sworn them off entirely.

Even though I have some misgivings about using a prewound bobbin, I haven't sworn them off entirely.

Photo: Len Hasemann

I have mixed feelings about prewound bobbins. I think they are really helpful when I’m working on a large scale embroidery project, which usually means I’m working on a piece for competition. And that means that I’m pushing the envelope in regards to what my embroidery machine is capable of under the most perfect circumstances.

There is a lot of talk about using the right needle and presser foot. How I position the spool on my embroidery machine comes into play in times like this and how the bobbin thread is wound on the bobbin. Prewound bobbins are wound at high speeds under more tension than is optimal in the factories where they come from. This results in a tightly wound bobbin with more thread on it than if you wound it yourself.

When I was working on a gown featuring a lot of metallic embroidery, I couldn’t get the bobbin thread to stay on the bottom of the fabric. After much huffing and puffing, I brought my machine in to the service department. The service tech gave my machine a once over and couldn’t find anything wrong with it. Then he noticed the prewound bobbin. He recommended to me that I not use them when I’m embroidering…EVER….

To be honest, I haven’t sworn them off altogether. When I’m embroidering on tricky fabrics like silk velvet or heavy stuff like leather, I don’t use them. I start each embroidery day winding 20 or 30 bobbins and I regard them as my gold.

I will admit to using them when I am working on large embroideries on easy to sew on fabrics (it’s nice not to have to take the hoop off the machine to change an empty bobbin mid embroidery)

If you’ve been using them with no ill effects,keep going! But if you’ve been experiencing unexplained tension issues like the one I described, you might want to try winding your own.

If you want to read all about the technical ins and outs of prewound bobbins, different brands, sizing, fiber content of thread etc…here are some good sources.
www.ericas.com (I love ericas website!)

posted in: embroidery, prewound bobbins

Comments (1)

LindaPermann writes: I've also been told to stay away from them. In addition to the concerns you mentioned, I think the thread is cheaper and leaves me with a lot more lint to clean up. But- I do understand the convenience draw!
Posted: 1:14 am on July 26th
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