Friday, August 21, 2009

Metric Standards For Sewing Machine Repair

Do you remember about twenty years ago, when we were told that everyone was going to be required to use the metric system instead of the American SAE system of measurement?

I do. I did not like it then. I do not like it now. Maybe it is because I just can not get it straight. Instead of inches, feet, and yards, the metric system uses centipedes, milipedes or something like it. Anyway it always seemed to me like the whole system was some kind of worm that creeped along. Yet, the metric system is here to stay because everybody else in the world uses it.

It really is not that complicated. A meter is divided up into hundredths or centi. Or it is divided up into thousandths or mili. So just how is a milimeter? Or what about a centimeter? Or for that matter how long is a meter anyway?

I know how long an inch is. I know how long a foot is. I even know how long a yard is. I understand that a meter is a little longer than a yard and measures about 39 inches. It is still really hard to get my mind around these measurements.

So how does all of this relate to sewing machine repair? When we read the instruction in sewing machine repair guides or sewing machine repair books; we see things like the setting for the oscillating hook to needle clearance is suppose to be XX millimeters. Somehow we have to figure out what it all means.

When it comes right down to it, I guess I don't really have to be able to measure metrics with my eyes alone do I? I can use feeler gauges that are already marked for certain sizes.

For example, I can use a feeler gauge to slide in between the parts to measure the distance. The feeler gauge helps me make sure the settings are right.

So, instead of worrying too much about metric measurements; get a good set of feeler gauges and use them. I can save loads of frustration and guess work.