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What You Need To Use Your Quilting Rulers For Both Traditional Home Machines and Longarms

When you want to start using rulers (for both your home quilting machine and your longarm) you need the correct type of foot and the correct thickness of rulers.

We will go over them so that you can get more out of your rulers, and more out of your quilting machine.

Do you have quilting rulers for your longarm and thought about using them for your home quilting machine?

Maybe you have quilting rulers for your home machine and now have a new shiny longarm and want to use them for that.

A few years back you were able to use a more generic ruler foot for your traditional machine and our long arm already arrived with a ruler foot standard.

Now, as the mechanics of traditional home machines have advanced, the generic foot is a bit more pesky to fit correctly. As I continue to teach machine quilting I am noticing more and more that you must have your machine manufactuerer's specific ruler foot.

And instead of listing and searching for each and every sewing machine by model number for the corresponding correct foot it is now either "high shank" or "low shank". There are even "angled shanks".

With an Adapter (as shown) Bernina's can use a low shank foot, or their Bernina Brand ruler foot.

Other machines use a long shank.

Westlee long shank.

No matter what your machine requires you will want it low enough so it does not hope over the ruler.

You can use both 1/4" foot for high shank machines and 1/8" foot for low shank traditional home machines.

Long arms require 1/4" because the foot hops and you don't want it to hop on a ruler and chip the ruler or put the machine out of timing. (Ask me how I know.)

  • The ruler foot may have a slot so the foot can slide up and down as it is held by a screw. Or some have a brass wheel that adjusts the foot height. Leave it loose, place your quilt sandwich beneath your ruler foot and let the foot rest gently on the top of the quilt. Turn the horizontal brass wheel or adjust the foot height so you can move the fabric easily under the ruler foot and tighten. Double check to make sure the screw is tight and secure so it won't accidently come loose and break a needle. Have found this is a easy to forget.

  • Be sure to use an extended base like a Sew Easy Table, or one that is custom made to fit around your home machine so your rulers do not rock back the forth. You will also need one for your longarm as well.

Find 1/8" and 1/4" rulers here >

Find feet and Bernina Adapters here >

Hope this helps. Quilt Happy Always,

Sally Terry


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