Are Sewing Machine Needles Universal?

Last Updated On August 22nd, 2018

Sewing machines and sewing itself is a profound art which not many can master. It takes perseverance, creativity and a skillful hand to sew those beautiful designs onto the empty canvas of clothes. Along with depending upon the skill of the person who is sewing it also depends on the tools which are used in it. Now when you are sewing something what is the absolute thing which you can’t sew without? Obviously there are many things but the thing that makes sewing possible is a sewing needle.

From the looks of it a needle would seem a little thing which is used for sewing but there are more technicalities to it then you can anticipate. If you have underestimated the proper use of sewing needle for different purposes then you are missing out on some great techniques. You must feel that changing the needle frequently would cause damage to your machine but this exactly where you are going wrong! If you don’t change the needle for its designated purpose the needle would break. To understand how sewing needle works, let’s look at the important parts that make it up:

  • Shank – this is the part which is clamped by the sewing machine’s part holding the needle
  • Shoulder – the place where the thick shank slightly tapers down to the shaft
  • Shaft – this is the length which is necessary for inserting the thread and the eye through the material
  • Groove – this part is located in the back of the shaft which helps the thread into a loop that helps the hook to pick up the thread
  • Scarf – the extra space provided for the hook to pass close by
  • Eye – this part carries the thread
  • Point – this part penetrates the material which enables it to either part the thread or to cut the fabric

According to the rule of thumb it is advisable to change the needle every 4 to 8 hours while sewing. There are a few rules that will help you select the perfect type of needle for different projects.

  • It is good to select the needle which would go perfectly with the thickness of the thread being used
  • Select a needle with the recommended needle head to accommodate the type of fabric you are using
  • One other rule of selecting the perfect needle is to remember that choose the needle and the thread as fine as the fabric
  • Consider your needle too small if your thread is shredding and choose the appropriate size

Now let’s talk about the different types of needles we can use. Personally I would prefer a needle that can be used for all kinds of purposes, in other words a universal needle. Now you must be thinking that are sewing machine needles universal? Of course they are! They are called universal needles. Though other needles are there to perform intricate sewing on special fabrics but nonetheless universal needles are a keeper.

What are universal needles?

Technically a universal needle is a great needle for all purposes. This needle has bit rounded tip which is appreciably sharp and can be used general knitting. This needle is great with woven fabrics but most ladies admit that it goes considerably well with cotton as well. Following are some technical guidelines for which kind of clothes and fabric can be pierced and knit with the help of different dimensions of a universal needle:

  • A 60/8 for silk fabric
  • 70/10 for light-weighted fabrics, it is also advisable for nylon
  • 80/12 for medium weight fabrics
  • 90/14 for medium as well as heavy weight fabrics like leather.

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