Welcome back everyone!
In several of my posts, I’ve talked about the great features available on Handi Quilter longarm quilting machines. But none of those features help when your machine isn’t working properly! So today, I want to review some of the basic things you need to do to keep your longarm machine in good working order.
Clean your longarm frame
Yup, even before you touch your machine, take care of the frame it sits on.
First, using a duster or soft cloth, go over the back table that holds your machine carriage. Make sure the duster picks up any stray threads or lint that may be sitting on the table. If you have the ProStitcher, make sure the blue flex track is totally clean.
Second, using a small piece of batting or a microfiber rag, clean the rails that your machine carriage sits on. There are two sets of rails:
1st the black rails that run along the back and front of the back table. This is the rail that your carriage sits on, allowing your machine to move left and right along the frame. We dampen the batting with water and run it along both tracks to remove any dust and dirt.
2nd the metal rails of the carriage that your machine sits on, letting it move backward and forward. Again, run your damp batting along both tracks to remove any dust and dirt.
Next, using that same piece of batting or microfiber rag, clean the carriage wheels running on those tracks.
The 1st set of wheels are the eight metal wheels of the carriage running on the black track. Hold your damp batting/rag against each wheel as you move the carriage back and forth on the frame.
The 2nd set of wheels are the four black wheels on the base of your machine that run on the silver track of your carriage. Get your batting/rag down into the groove of these wheels to thoroughly clean them.
Also make sure your encoder wheel is free from dust and threads. (The 5th wheel running on the silver carriage track.)
For those of you that own the ProStitcher, also be aware of the white gear wheel underneath your carriage that runs on the blue flex track. This wheel needs to be kept clean of debris for your ProStitcher to operate correctly.
Finally, make sure all cables connected to your longarm are secure and plugged into the correct port.
How often should you clean your frame and machine carriage? Ideally every time you complete a quilt.
And here are some examples of what you DON’T want to see!