Of all the things that can affect the results you achieve when using a home sewing machine, the needle is an important aspect. Choosing the right needle for your Juki HZL F300 is critical. How do you know which one is the right one considering how many needles are available for personal units like Juki sewing machines? Following are a few tips on needle selection that will help you make the right choice.
Some Sewing Machine Needle Basics
Needles for sewing machines are available in many sizes and styles for use with a variety of fabrics. Some machines will accept universal needles, while others will only accept those made for that specific brand. Sewing machine needles are also available in different qualities. Lower quality, inexpensive needles often have rough points and burrs that snag the fabric or cause frequent thread breakage.
The best recommendation, whether you work on a machine like the Juki HZL F300 or another model, is to purchase top quality needles and always use one that is sharp. Switch the needle after every 8 to 10 hours of stitching to ensure you have perfect stitches every time. The main reason needles break is because it is either dull or the wrong type or size.
Sewing machine needles come in both imperial and metric sizes. The larger the size number, the thicker the needle. Standard needles are sized from 10 to 20 and metric needles from 70 to 120. The finest needles are best to use when working with silk, sheers, cotton lawn, and other fine fabrics. The heaviest needles should be used when sewing on denim, leather, vinyl, and canvas.
The most commonly used sizes that are appropriate for many types of cotton, linens, and synthetic fabrics, are 80 and 90. Choose your needle based on the fabric you are using, the type of thread required, and other notable fabric properties.
Following are some of the types of needles available, each designed for use with different fibers, fabrics, and threads:
- Sharp - Sharp needles are the universal needles used on all types of machines including Juki sewing machines. They are suitable when sewing on cotton, linen, wool, and other natural fibers. Sharp needles can also be used with many synthetic fabrics.
- Microtex Needles - Microtex needles are a variety of extra-sharp universal needles designed for use on extremely delicate fabrics like sheers, gauze, and meshes. They are also recommended for many synthetic specialty fabrics to prevent visible needle holes when stitching with a Juki HZL F300.
- Ballpoint, Jersey, and Stretch Needles - These needles all have rounded tips and are designed for use with jersey, knits, viscose, polyester, and other fabrics that have some stretch. Stretch needles are ballpoint needles that are coated to slide easily through stretchy, tightly woven fabric. The rounded tips prevent the snagging and skipped stitches that can occur when sewing these fabrics with standard sharp needles.
- Leather and Denim Needles - Needles designed to stitch through leather, vinyl, denim, and other thick and heavy fabrics have a sharp chiseled tip that makes a tiny cut in the fabric so the needle can easily pass through. Stitching on these type of fabrics with sharp needles can result in needle breakage and strain your machine.
Before you sit down to sew on a quality Juki sewing machine like the Juki HZL F300, be sure you have a sharp needle that is the right type and size for the fabric you are using. Proper needle choice makes working on sewing machines easier, with fewer frustrations like broken threads and bent needles to deal with. By using the right needle for the job, you will have great success with all of your sewing projects!