QM Shorts: Mascara Wand Cleaners

By Jill Montgomery from Fairfield, Ohio, a member of QM’s 2012 Scrap Squad

 

JillMontgomeryopt QM Shorts: Mascara Wand Cleaners

Jill Montgomery

I picked up this tip shortly after I started quilting and it has been a lifesaver for keeping my machines running smoothly! Use a clean mascara wand to clean the lint out of your machine.

Mascara wands1 300x225 QM Shorts: Mascara Wand Cleaners

I picked up a pack of 25 wands from a seller on eBay. There are usually always a few listings and I think I got this pack for less then $5 including shipping.

Screwdriver tool 300x225 QM Shorts: Mascara Wand Cleaners

This handy little tool came with my machine in the box with my extra feet, needles and other small tools.

how to use tool 300x225 QM Shorts: Mascara Wand Cleaners

Using this triangle screwdriver, I removed both screws that hold the foot plate over the bobbin area of my machine. Not all machines have screws in the throat plate, but if yours does, put the screws in a safe place so you don’t lose them. As I was taking pictures, I actually dropped one of the screws into the bobbin area because it wasn’t in a safe place.

I removed my presser foot and the needle so that I could clean the bobbin area thoroughly with them out of the way.

dirty bobbin area 300x225 QM Shorts: Mascara Wand Cleaners

Here is my linty bobbin area with the bobbin removed.

Wand at work 300x225 QM Shorts: Mascara Wand Cleaners

Using the wand, you’ll want to sweep the bobbin area to remove all lint. The bristles on the wand really grasp at the lint to pull out everything that moves.

teeth in grooves 300x225 QM Shorts: Mascara Wand Cleaners

The bristles also fit really well into any grooves such as the feed dogs…

wand in deep clean 300x225 QM Shorts: Mascara Wand Cleaners

… and the empty spaces around and behind and under where the bobbin actually sits. Be sure to work the wand into all the nooks and crannies in the entire bobbin area.

clean bobbin 300x225 QM Shorts: Mascara Wand Cleaners

Use the wand to clean the bobbin as well. Top and bottom, inside and out.

all clean 300x225 QM Shorts: Mascara Wand Cleaners drop of oil 300x225 QM Shorts: Mascara Wand Cleaners

Once the bobbin area is clean, add machine oil to your machine’s specifications and you are ready to reassemble the machine and get back to sewing!

pile of dirt 300x225 QM Shorts: Mascara Wand Cleaners

As I clean out the machine, I keep a pile of the lint on a napkin, tissue or scrap of fabric. What a mess! This always reminds me that I need to clean my machine more often! The mascara wand can be cleaned up and reused many times. It’s a necessity for me and it’s kept right next to my seam ripper.

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6 Responses to QM Shorts: Mascara Wand Cleaners

  1. Awesome hint! I’ve already ordered some on Ebay:)

  2. Jennifer says:

    Great idea Jill and I bet you could get wands at a beauty supply too. I also use a pipe cleaner to get into the areas around the bobbin case.

  3. Claudia says:

    I keep a handful of cotton swabs near my machine. Just about every bobbin things are linty, so I take a few seconds to swipe out the fuzz. For a more in-depth cleaning, I put a drop or two of oil on the swab and more fuzz sticks to it. Those mini-brushes look like they do a good job.

  4. DianeH says:

    Wonderful tip – thankyou!

  5. Regina says:

    I’ve been using a soft bristle paintbrush, but the bristles flex a lot and I don’t think they will do as good a job as the wand. Great tip!!!

  6. Deanna says:

    Great tip, Jill. I also have a sort of cleaning schedule–every five bobbins. As they empty I put them in a certain place. When the fifth one goes in–Time to Clean!

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