In the past when I've had problems with my machine I've played by the rules - publicly - and never mentioned names or specifics about any persons or companies.
For a couple of years now I've had several people privately email me so that they could speak freely about their own issues, which were similar to mine. All the usual stuff, but nobody else would help them. In fact, they experienced an "excommunication" of sorts from certain forums because of their cries for help.
I can tell you that nothing boils my blood more than an industry that behaves like a mafia.
Which is why I'm here today to tell you about something that is wrong with Aurifil thread spools. It's not my opinion, it's a proven fact. It's not that I have anything against the Aurifil company - if you follow this blog you know that I love Aurifil thread. In fact, they should pay me for all of the good publicity I give them, if I had a larger following. But this is my blog and I feel safe letting my few followers know of a problem so that you don't have to have your day ruined. Like mine was.
Aurifil thread behaves perfectly in almost every stitching scenario. Until you get down to this part of the spool, in the 5000 and 6000 series of newer colors:
At this point on the spool, the thread begins to pull itself from the bottom of the spool way too tightly as it attempts to overcome that slight curve at the bottom of the wound thread. I was baffled at first as to why the thread suddenly would not pull through smoothly.
Then, I watched the spool as I pulled it and sure enough - the thread gets caught up underneath the remaining thread and causes too much strain on the tension.
Instead of the thread smoothly unwinding from the sides of the spool, as it reaches the bottom it pulls from the bottom - sort of underneath itself.
So now the half-empty spools that are beginning to accumulate in my studio are only good for making bobbins.
Which wouldn't be so bad except that I really really really needed the rest of this spool to finish the customer quilt on my rack today. But it was not to be so. Hours were wasted trying to rework every possible way to feed this spool evenly. Turning it upside-down produces the same problem. Feeding it horizontally made it worse. I stitched and ripped out, stitched and ripped out for hours.
This has happened before with one other spool of Aurifil. The one above is #6001 - which did this to me a few weeks ago. The one I used today was #5001, which has the same exact defect. It began as a full spool, wonderfully stitching onto the quilt. Suddenly, when half-empty, it acted up.
Since I use Aurifil on a regular basis I can say that this problem has not happened to me with the older colors. Ever.
I had to order a new spool from a company that does not offer me wholesale, as well as spending up to $30 for 2nd Day shipping just so I can continue this small job. Living in the middle of nowhere, I can tell you that 2nd Day shipping means that I just might see it in a week. But if I don't pay for it, I may wait 2 weeks for that one spool of thread. That I can likely only use half of.
So there you have it. I hope I have helped you avoid a train wreck in your own studio.