Have you ever noticed that thread spools made for sewing machines can be wound differently, and sometimes the thread easily comes off the spool while other times it doesn’t? There's actually a reason for that.

If you’ve ever bought a spool of thread and had trouble with it on Juki sewing machines like the Juki HZL-DX5, it could be due to the way the thread was wound on the spool. Once you know why there are two spooling techniques and what the difference is, you can make wiser choices when buying your thread.

Thread Is Wound On Spools 2 Different Ways

As if you needed one more thing to think about when choosing the right thread for the projects you sew with your Juki sewing machines, the way the thread is spooled is also important. That’s because you can find it spooled two different ways:

  • Stacked Thread - Stacked thread is horizontally wound onto the spool so the thread lays in stacked, uniform rows all the way up the spool, then back down again. A brand new spool is easily recognized by how the thread forms straight, horizontally stacked wrapped lines that do not overlap.
  • Cross-Wound Thread - Cross-wound thread is wound onto the spool so that it forms layers of “x's" up and down the spool. Cross-wound thread spools are easily recognized by their look, which appears as layers of threads that cross in the middle and form multiple x's on the spool.

Why Different Thread Spool Types?

Essentially, the reason for two different spooling techniques is advancements in sewing machines through the ages. The first machines ever made only had vertical spool holders on the top of the body. The spool sat upright and spun around as the thread was pulled into the machine. The thread only needed to be neatly wound on the spools so it pulled off one row at a time as the machine was in use.

Fast-forward a few decades and as manufacturers began adding more and more features to their machines, space and setup became an issue. One answer to some design concerns was to turn the spool holder vertically. Unfortunately, doing so caused problems with unwinding the spool, causing the stacked threads to catch and tug as they were pulled off since the spool could not roll.

The solution was to wind the thread in an “x” pattern so it pulled off the end of the spool freely without catching on anything the spool having to roll, which is still done today.

How To Avoid Problems with Spooled Thread

The key to avoiding problems such as thread binding and breakage, the spool being pulled off the machine, or other thread issues is to buy thread spooled the right way for your machine’s spool holder. Machines like the Juki HZL-DX5 have horizontal holders and require cross-threaded spools.

Many other models still have vertical holders at the top and require stacked spools. Since some machines actually have both, just use the right spool type and your sewing should be effortless.

Before you run out to buy thread for sewing machines like the Juki HZL-DX5, make sure you know what your machine needs based on how the thread is actually wound on the spool. Whether you’re sewing on Juki sewing machines with hidden horizontal thread holders or other brands with vertical ones, you can usually find a great selection of thread wound both ways!

Juki HZL-DX5 Computerized Sewing and Quilting Machine

juki sewing machines

Juki HZL-DX5 Show Model Computerized Sewing and Quilting Machine

juki sewing machines