I had a devil of a time with a small spool of 100 wt Wonderfil Invisifil thread — it kept getting caught in the slot on the spool that secures the thread, or wrapping itself around the vertical or horizontal thread spool holder. It was the only spool of that colour that I had and it was perfect for the top stitching I wanted to do. But how to get it off the horrible spool and put it onto something that wouldn’t catch?
I had a lightbulb moment — I’d use the bobbin winder and wind the thread onto a bobbin then put the bobbin on the spool holder and I could use the thread without it catching every few seconds. Easy peasy. But not so fast, Batman…
Once I’d wound the thread off the spool and onto the bobbin, I was reminded that the Handi Quilter Sweet Sixteen has a thicker rod for spools than it does for bobbins! (that’s a silly design flaw, in my opinion — if the spool rods were a tad narrower they could take both spools and bobbins, not just spools). That meant that I couldn’t put the full bobbin onto either the vertical or horizontal spool holder. And I couldn’t wind the thread back off the bobbin and onto a different sort of spool as the bobbin winder can’t do that. Thwarted…
Except the previous day I’d rigged up a temporary lighting system for my Sweet Sixteen Surely I could do the same for the bobbin so I could use it as the top thread? Off to the sewing room, the kitchen and the shed to see what would work. I came back with an artist’s paintbrush, a roll of painters tape, and a satay stick. Well, the satay stick wasn’t going to work as it was way too thin. But the paintbrush was an option — the bobbin spun nicely on it, until I set it up, when I found that the 100 wt thread just wanted to spool off the bobbin and get wrapped around the paintbrush. So that was no solution.
The problem was that there was nothing to prevent the thread from coming loose from the bobbin and winding itself around whatever makeshift spool holder I had. I needed a cap of some sort… Just like on my domestic machine. My husband brought out a screwdriver that was the perfect diameter — my domestic sewing machine caps and felt pads fitted perfectly. It was then a matter of attaching the screwdriver to the machine with painters’ tape and off I went!
So now my Sweet Sixteen looks like some sort of makeshift Heath Robinson invention! I have an OTT Task Lamp tied to the left side with twist ties, a floor lamp on the right, and now this screwdriver spool holder for my bobbin full of the thread I wanted to use
This option would not have been necessary if Handi Quilter had built these machines with slightly narrower diameter spool holders that would comfortably take thread spools and cones, AND M bobbins. Such a small design change would offer more thread delivery options to users.