Fixing Snags with Mono-Poly Specialty Thread

We recently started working with Superior Thread’s Clear mono-polyester thread, which really is invisible! This entirely clear polyester thread is very, very thin, much like 2 lb. test fishing line. We had two problems: The first is threading the sewing machine, the second being snags. We’re using a Pfaff Grand Quilter 1200, and before we could fix the various tensions and settings, we needed the thread to work smoothly. Even with the horizontal adapter (recommended by other folks), we continued getting snags.

Fortunately, we fish a lot and we use spinning reels with an open top and wire (bale) feeding system. This is exactly like a spool of thread and wire guides. When we start the summer with a full reel of 6 lb. test line, we also get a lot of snags and kinks. The reason is that fishing line, like mono-poly thread comes off the reel remembering (a little bit) the loops of the reel or spool. Those loops “spring” out from the reel, over the lip of the spool and tangle. As we reduce the line on the reel, the snags go away. And that gave us an idea.

Watching the way the thread came off the spool, we saw that the spool kept moving left and right. We bought the horizontal adapter because without it, having the thread come off the end was even worse. Even so, the moving spool and the thin, narrow lips of the spool allow the thread to kink, loop upward, pop over the vertical spool holder and wind around the end of the adapter.

The solution was to cut out a piece of stiff cardboard, slightly shorter than the upright spool holder. On our machine, it’s about a 3″ square. We then cut a small cross in the center and slipped the cardboard over the horizontal adapter arm. As you can see in the picture, the cardboard sits between the end of the spool and the upright holder that comes with the machine.

mono poly thread sewing machine

By increasing the “edge” width of the spool end, the thread can’t pop up and over the top of the holder. Additionally, we looped the thread through the bobbin thread-guide, which keeps the line of thread almost perfectly in the middle of the spool. Now we get a very smooth run-off, the spool no longer moves left and right, and with the right tension, we get perfect stitches with no gathering. The thread is fantastic, and sews like a dream!

To thread the machine, we found a needle with a small enough eye to fit through the various holes in the upper thread guides. We use a simple Dritz needle threader to get the mono-poly through the needle’s eye. Then we use the needle to thread the rest of the machine, like a weaver’s shuttle.

Finally, to thread the actual sewing machine needle, we stick with the Fonz & Porter lighted Luma Threader. Those are so good, you don’t actually need to see the thread itself when putting it through the needle hole. You can feel it when it’s ready to go. Since we can’t see the invisible thread, it’s perfect. We plan on using this thread for a long time. Now we’re all set to make the Emperor’s new clothes! All we need is invisible fabric!

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