Typical maxi-lock all purpose thread weight
Thread weight is a measurement of length and the lower the number the heavier the thread. Typical maxi-lock thread is 40 weight, meaning that 40 kilometers of 40 weight thread would weigh 1kg. A 30 weight thread would be heavier and only require 30 kilometers to weight the same. 40 weight maxi-lock thread works best with a 90/14 size needle.
The meaning of thread ‘Tex’
Thread Tex refers to its weight. Tex is a measurement system that uses 1,000 meters of thread per gram as the starting point. If 1,000 meters of thread weighs one gram it is labeled ‘Tex 1’. If it weighed 5 grams it would be labeled Tex 5. Fine(light) threads thus have a low Tex number and thick(heavy) threads have a higher Tex number.
Maxi-lock thread is popular (but is it good?)
Maxi-Lock thread is a brand of sewing thread made by ‘American and Efird co’. It is a popular thread choice with home tailors who prefer using a serger sewing machine. Maxi-lock thread is 100% polyester, exceptionally soft, is available in dozens of vibrant colors and lends itself well to high-speed sewing. Yes, it’s good thread.
Sewing thread size, fabric and needle chart
This sewing thread size chart quickly suggests the best thread size to use with different fabric weights. It also suggests the best needle size to use with the thread.
|Thread Weight(Size)||Fabric Type||Needle Size|
|80-50 wt.||Light Fabric||60/8, 65/9, 70/10, 75/11|
|50-40 wt.||Medium Fabric||75/11, 80/12, 90/14|
|40-20 wt.||Heavy Fabric||100/16, 110/18, 120/19|
Most sewing machines need upper and lower thread
Most sewing machines need upper and lower thread to form stitches. The lower thread is located in the bobbin below the presser foot and serves to lock individual stitches. Some machines, however, have been designed to work without a lower thread but these machines are considered difficult to use in comparison.
About quilting with regular thread
You can quilt with regular thread, I often use a fine, strong two-ply 50 or 60 weight thread for piecing. I find that it allows me to sew true quarter inch seams. 50 weight thread works but you can sometimes see your stitches so use the 60 weight, or even bigger 80 or 100 weight thread, when possible.
Amount of thread needed to make a quilt (chart)
The quilting fabric chart below represents the average amount of thread needed to make a good quality quilt.
|Quilt Size||Light Quilting||Heavy Quilting|
|Twin Size||400 yds.||1,200 yds.|
|Queen Size||600 yds.||1,600 yds.|
|King Size||750 yds.||2,000 yds.|
Spotting a good quality sewing thread
Sewing machines require good quality sewing thread to work optimally. You can spot good quality thread by giving it a good pull and by lightly scratching at it with a fingernail. If the thread breaks or frays you may want to use a higher quality thread with your sewing machine to avoid frustrating thread breaks.
Simple trick for testing thread quality
Hold a length of thread between your thumb and finger and press against the thread lightly with your thumbnail. Pull the thread gently and let your nail lightly “scratch” the thread. A high quality thread will remain tightly bound but a low quality thread will develop small, broken and loose fibers that point outwards.
How to identify Polyester thread
Identifying polyester thread is simple – Reading the label will typically tell you of your thread contains nylon, cotton or polyester. However, if there is no label, carefully burning the thread end in a well ventilated area works for identification purposes because Polyester thread melts, it doesn’t burn.