Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Tension Settings for the Bernina 830

I've been asked by several people to send them a list of the tension settings that have worked for me while quilting with various threads on the Bernina 830 machine. So here goes....

All of the quilts worked on had Warm & Natural batting in them. Tensions could change if you are using a different batting, but these #s are a good place to start.

I have had great success using the Mettler Silk Finish 100% Cotton 50 weight thread in the bobbin with the various threads that I use. I have used poly and other threads in the bobbin, but not been as happy. I am currently testing Invisifil from the WonderFil thread company as a bobbin thread and have used it in a couple of quilts; it is working well and blends in nicely.

The first thread listed will be the one threaded through the top of the machine, the bobbin thread is in parentheses. The number will be the tension and the Auto or Manual refers to the needle threading method.

First, two water soluble threads used in trapunto by machine:

Vanish Extra from Superior Threads (Mettler Silk Finish 100 Cotton 50 wt) 2.0 Auto

Wash-A-Way from YLI (Mettler Silk Finish) 1.5 Auto

Next, a few monofilaments:
Wonder from YLI (Mettler Silk Finish) 2.0 Auto sometimes, but not consistently

MonoPoly from Superior (Mettler Silk Finish) 1.25 Manual (worked best with the thread net covering the spool)

Sew Art (Mettler Silk Finish) 2.0 Auto

Sulky (Mettler Silk Finish) 1.0 Manual

Jenny Haskins (Superior King Tut) 2.0 Auto

Invisifil (Mettler Silk Finish) 2.0 Manual
Invisifil is not technically a monofilament, but it comes in 30 colors and blends in beautifully without the shine of a monofilament thread.

And, finally, some of the decorative threads:
Glitter by Superior (Mettler Silk Finish) 1.25 Manual

Mettler metallic (Mettler Silk Finish) 2.0 Manual

Sulky rayon (Mettler Silk Finish) 3.0 Auto

830 stitchers: Please share your settings in the comments to increase everybody's knowledge of what works best....


  1. Way cool. I want to test this on my 730 to see if it applies to me. And I'll definitely share with my 830 friends. Thanks.


  2. The tensions in my blog post are only for the 830; my 730 has totally different ones. It’s really hard to give you a rule of thumb, but an example would be for the Vanish Extra, I use a 2.0 on the 830, but about a 3.0 on the 730; for YLI monofilament, 2.0 on the 830, 3.25 to 3.5 on the 730. So you would really have to play around with it since they aren’t really comparable.

  3. Thank You, Thank You, Thank You! These are so nice to have. Have you seen the Yahoo group for the 830? We have little eyes from Bernina that help too! I've had to add 2.0 to all of my tension settings for my machine to work properly.


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