by RockyB 26 Mar 2017

Hi everyone! I would love some advice on using Metallic thread! Do I need to use a different size needle when using this? I used my 75/11 needle that I use for everything. I have slowed down my machine, put in a new needle and used a thread stand. I still had issues with breakage. Thanks!


by pennyhal2 31 Mar 2017

Thread the thread through a packing peanut before it goes to the machine. Don't know why it works, but it does. A 75/11 is too small for metallic thread. Different brands of metallics do better than others. If all else fails, try using a different brand. I use King Star.

by rhndsul58 29 Mar 2017

try using a topstitch needle it has a bigger eye-also dont forget to match the bobbin thread as it shows through also slow the machine if you can- sometimes when using unusual thread you can wind it on the bobbin and reverse your tension but you have to experiment

by katydid 27 Mar 2017

When all else fails try another brand of thread.

by 02kar Moderator 27 Mar 2017

Place your thread on a separate thread stand or in a container like a can or glass a couple of feet or more away from the machine. Don't ask me why it works, but it does. I've been told it gives the thread time to cool down. Whatever the reason may be, it works. Let us know how you make out. And I've never had a problem doing this.

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jrob by jrob 27 Mar 2017

It allows the thread to feed more smoothly into the machine as it relaxes on the long trip over.

by jgwatchorn 27 Mar 2017

This cutie Tread is very good reading..................
by Sewmum1 29 Nov 2016+37
Any tips for making FSL with metallic thread? I would really love to be able to do this successfully.

I have been trying for far too long to get this to work, I am thinking it may be the designs. I had metallic thread in the top but it just keeps breaking and I had rayon in the bobbin as I wasn't game to have metallic thread in the bobbin area

I have tried an embroidery and a metallic needle, size 11
Tension is at -1
2 layers WSS
Slowed speed to 500st/min
I didn't try metallic thread in the bobbin ( just had rayon in there) as I didn't want to mess up my cutter or have the thread cause other issues

Even after all the above the top metallic thread kept on breaking every 20 stitches or so. Any ideas would be appreciated if you have been able to get this to work. Thanks

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Comments (13)
by jobaby 05 Dec 2016 +3
Just finished, last night, a dozen FSL owlsl using maderia metallic thread on top and matching embroidery thread in the bobbin. The needle was Superior top stitch and the speed of the Viking Royale was reduced about a forth. Absolutely no touching of any other settings. Now, with this and all the other wonderful comments, you can stay confused for at least a year. Jobaby
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jobaby by jobaby 05 Dec 2016
Forgot - I put the thread behind the machine and over the hook of the thread stand.
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by crossstitcher6 30 Nov 2016 +4
You need to feed the thread horizontally. It feeds better that way and also do all of the above things you mentioned. Good luck, Carol
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by meganne 30 Nov 2016 +5
for one thing your needle is too small but let me just share how I learnt to stitch metallic thread without heartache......

The best information I have ever followed, for using metallic threads, is to be found at the link below.
The best metallic THREADS and the absolute best Topstitch needles, for use with metallic threads, will also be found at the same link

Now having said all this, I would not recommend stitching a whole FSL design with metallic thread UNLESS you are using Superior Metallic threads and needles and you follow their advice for stitching out.

There isn't ONE secret trick, it is the combination of all his advice that makes it work.

I still might think twice about using metallic thread for a WHOLE FSL design.
I would probably be very selective about the way the design is digitised and I would probably prefer to choose one where ALL the underlay stitching is completed before moving on to the main top layer and I might only stitch the top layer with the metallic thread.

Obvious reason? FSL, by it's very nature, is far too dense to stitch the whole design with metallic thread.
Just my two bob's worth. :-)
2 links:

Sewmum1 by Sewmum1 30 Nov 2016
Thank you. You have given some good advice. I will invest some better thread to start with. What I have seems to work very well for open designs but not so great with dense designs. I agree that most FSL is too dense to be completely made with metallics thread, just by its very nature of design. I was just testing out some new designs and experimenting with thread, hoping it would work.
Thanks for the links too, some very good info.
meganne by meganne 02 Dec 2016
I should add that I have bought Superior's metallic threads and even repurchased more of them, I absolutely love them, in my opinion, they are better than Madeira's. I also purchased them for Chris Pennifold and Pauline (Nonna57). hugs, Meg
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by sewtired 29 Nov 2016 +4
I don't have much to add to the great suggestions already offered. There is an article somewhere out there on the web that explains that spools of thread are usually wound differently from cones of thread. The cones should be fixed horizontally and the thread should pull off the top and the spools should be placed vertically and allowed to rotate with the thread pulling off from the side. I can also add that I have had very good success with Robison-Anton metallics.
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by 02kar Moderator 29 Nov 2016 +5
I have been successful as long as I put the thread on a thread stand away from the machine. I have not had to change needles or tensions. I've been told the distance gives the thread time to cool down. whatever the reason, as long as it works. If you don't have a heavy thread stand, put the spool in a large mug or glass and monitor it that it doesn't fly out. Btw, it does not have to be far from the machine as long as the thread's path is clear. Let us know what works for you and be sure to post your project in the Projects section. You may need to put the metallic thread in the bobbin also.
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by pennyhal2 29 Nov 2016 +6
The only thread I never have problems with is King Star. I've used the metallic on top and the bobbin to do FSL. Some of the other threads I have to use Sewers Aid on the spool. Also, this sounds crazy, but I put the thread through a packing peanut before going into the machine. I got this hint from another forum and it does work. I simply thread a needle with the metallic thread and push the threaded needle through the peanut then thread the machine.
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by basketkase 29 Nov 2016 +8
I had a heck of a time using metallic in my bernina you it kept breaking constantly.....I did have luck using a metallic needle and Yenmet metallic......I use Yenmet now even in my Melco with great success.........I got the thread on the internet........
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by noah 29 Nov 2016 +9
The only thing not said and i do it all except i put my thread stand on the floor so it has a long way to go and works perfect ***also slow it down and decrease tension from 4 to 3 hugs
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by rescuer Moderator 29 Nov 2016 +10
I just made a quick and very inexpensive (possible) solution. The plastic cup will need some weight (coins or marbles might work) or glue it to something like a block of wood to prevent it from tipping over. The pink wire is just a large paperclip. (It may need to be bent to prevent the spool from bumping the side of the cup) I used a hole punch to make the side holes. They should line up.

I have a couple of doctor appointments today or I would test it -- I need to do something fun so this would be a good excuse. ;) Maybe tomorrow. dragonflyer 29 Nov 2016
Good one, Rescuer...
Sewmum1 by Sewmum1 29 Nov 2016
Thank you this looks good. I will see if I can fashion something similar to fit my spool
sewmom by sewmom 30 Nov 2016
Very inventive!
marianamin2003 by marianamin2003 03 Dec 2016
Thank you for this great idea.
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by dragonflyer 29 Nov 2016 +8
Sorry to hear you have been having so many problems...I have been using metallic thread for FSL in both the top and bobbin problems. I use a 80/12 Embroidery Needle (larger eye than a standard needle). I believe a lot depends upon the brand of thread. I am very successful with Madeira, Superior, Floriani, and Sulky. Not so good with Coats & Clark. I use the large 5000 meter Madeira cones and need to use a tall thread stand and I also use a net over the cone. If I use the small spools, I always turn them sideways so they will unroll like a roll of toilet paper. If I do not, the thread keeps twisting off the spool, gets knotted and breaks horribly. Some like Jerrilyn use a packing peanut and thread the metallic thread through the packing peanut with a needle and the peanut sits on the top of the machine just before the threading into the machine begins. I use one layer of woven WSS hooped with a rubber hoop helper on the sides to prevent the WSS from slipping. I usually loosen the tension from 4.0 down to 3.0 on my BabyLock, but rarely slow the speed down (usually keep at 1000 spm)...It could be the design you are using has not been digitized well...I am using a Sonia Showalter angel and her designs are spectacular. If you wanted to test to see if it was the design, I would use one of hers to see how it stitches out. Sewmom had a terrible time with using metallic thread and found that she needed to place the thread spool horizontally and have it roll off like a roll of TP as I mentioned above.) Here is the link to her post...good luck and keep us posted!
1 links:

Sewmum1 by Sewmum1 29 Nov 2016
Thank you. I was using a tall thread stand but didn't think about a net. Will try that and also coming off like tp. I have used the metallics for other embroidery but this was the first time for FSL. When you have metallic thread in the bobbin, do you turn the auto cutter feature off?
rescuer by rescuer 29 Nov 2016
I was trying to find a good way to explain it. Kim you did a much better job! It is a good thing we have so many Cuties willing (and able) to help. This is a wonderful community!
dragonflyer by dragonflyer 29 Nov 2016
As far as the thread cutter, I leave it on..The large 5000 meter cones are would so that the thread should spool off the top...the small spools are would so it should be pulled off the spool like a roll of TP...hope this helps...There are a couple of special thread stands made to hold the spools like a roll of TP, but I think they are very expensive and you can improvise and make your own very inexpensively...I think I put a link to a pricey horizontal thread stand in Sewmom's post if you want to take a peek..
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by graceandham 29 Nov 2016 +6
My only tip, which I am not willing to do myself. Floriani metallic thread is encased in something and it stitches much like regular thread. But, and you knew there was a BUT.... it is quite pricey.

Sewmum1 by Sewmum1 29 Nov 2016
Thanks, why is there always a but and more expensive too? :)
graceandham by graceandham 29 Nov 2016
I think it comes with our territory.
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by rescuer Moderator 29 Nov 2016 +6
I looked but could not find a video -- so I will just try to explain. Cone threads are wound differently from spools. Spools need to have thread come off the spool different from a cone. Think of a ribbon spool. If you pull it straight, then it comes off smooth and straight. If you lay it down on a table and pull it up, it will twist and cross. (I hope that made some sense) You may need an adapter like my Babylock machine does.
I am sure others will have great ideas for you to try too.

sewmom by sewmom edited 29 Nov 2016
Some of he metallics are like a flat ribbon which is why they need to unwind flat, not off the top of the spool. I lay my 10 thread stand down sideways and put the spool on it. I still help it a little by hand as it unwinds but it won't twist this way.
Sewmum1 by Sewmum1 29 Nov 2016
I will try that next. I have been using my thread stand with the thread coming from the top of the spool. Thanks
Kampfzwerg by Kampfzwerg 30 Nov 2016
Hello Cuties, last year I made over 100 snowflakes with Madeira Classic Metallic Thread. This was the first time ever I stitched out FSL. The snowflakes were designed for rayon 40 From The Needle of Anne. I used it as top and bobbin thread and a Madeira metallic needle no 80. Its allways important not to let the thread wind off over the top. I use the Martelli Thread Stand, very helpfull with big spools.

by vickiannette 27 Mar 2017

good to revisit this question. I can't help at all though, since I've never tried metallic and am keen to learn what others say.

by crafter2243 Moderator 26 Mar 2017

One of the things I know that it is important how the thread winds of the spool. I am afraid the thread stand helps a bit, but maybe the YouTube will explain it better. Just copy and paste the link. You should also have a needle specifically for metallic thread. If you google sewing with metallic thread you will get all kinds of advice. Good luck

crafter2243 by crafter2243 26 Mar 2017

Actually you can click on the link

RockyB by RockyB 26 Mar 2017

Thank you, I will check it out! Didn't know there were needles for metallic thread, guess I'll be ordering those!

graceandham by graceandham 26 Mar 2017

If you think the way it winds is encouraging twisting and breaking, turn the cone or spool upside down! Before I start a metallic project, I wind off a good bit of thread to get rid of the twisties. And if I start noticing it twisting up, I will stop machine cut, and restart with a new long unwound part. Back your machine up 5 or 10 stitches and resume!