UPDATE 11-6-2017: I’m sorry to say that the Thread Stand Hero website is no longer active.
I do not know where, or if, the Quilting Foot Seam Guide Attachment is still available.
I love my sewing machine. She is a fantastic stitcher, an amazing free-motion quilter, and she has stitched through 18 layers of fabric, two layers of woven fusible interfacing and one layer of Peltex like it was butter. BUTTER. Room temperature butter, actually. Yeah. She’s amazing. Except for one thing.
And it’s not even her fault really. It’s the walking/even feed foot that’s the problem. The designers of this machine designed it so that you can not use the walking foot/even feed foot and a seam guide at the same time. Same with all of the other high-speed straight-stitch machines like the Juki TL series, the Janome 1600D, and the Babylock Jane. I know this, because I spent days researching and emailing several online sewing centers trying to find a foot that would work.
One of the women in a PQ1500 group I belong to said that a Janome foot would fit and work, and it does. However, it is obviously a lighter duty foot, and one must be careful not to run it hard on these machines. Another negative is that the walking/even feed foot doesn’t match up exactly with the feed dogs on the machine. That hasn’t been a problem for me yet, but it is something to note. I did a You Tube video demonstrating how the Janome foot works on my machine and a very kind and helpful commenter pointed out that there was another solution to this issue. She owns a Juki and was equally frustrated at this obvious design flaw with the walking foot.
The solution she found is the Quilting Foot Seam Guide Attachment by Thread Stand Hero.
Walking Foot Seam guide attachment
DISCLAIMER: The website states that this will NOT fit the Juki machines (and it can be inferred that applies to the other similar high-speed straight-stitch machines), and they are right. However, there is a trick that will let you make it work!
According to the website, the seam guide is universal and will fit most feet that are 1″ wide or less. The PQ1500S, Juki TL, Janome 1600D and Babylock Jane feet measure just over that. The trick to get this to fit is to take the plastic cover off of the back of the foot. It is merely a cosmetic piece to cover all the metal and make the foot look nice. The cover has no function. Since a seam guide is more important to me than a “pretty” walking foot, I have no problem with taking off the plastic piece to make this work. (To pull your cover off, from the bottom of the foot, lightly pull apart the plastic sides and slide it up and off of the foot.)
Seam Guide resting on the slanted back
There are a few things to note about this guide and the particular walking foot I have. The walking foot has a strongly slanted back. Which means the seam guide will not butt up directly against the foot. As you can see in the picture, I put the seam guide on at a slant, and it is resting on top of the back part of the foot. Please notice that the bottom edges of the clip part of the seam guide are sharp. That is why I have it so high up on the back of the walking foot. You may wish to sand/grind those sharp corners down with a dremel type tool, but I found it works just fine if I maneuver the clip part up a little higher.
Here are a few other pictures from different views for your reference:
The seam guide attachment comes with two different sized bars to allow for larger and smaller distances. It also comes with two foam pads attached inside the clip part and two extra pads. Since my foot is just at the 1″ measurement with the cover off, I needed to take off the foam pads inside the guide. I’m not worried about scratching up the metal case on the foot, so it wasn’t a concern for me.
I did do some stitching with the foot today and had no issues. The arms did vibrate a bit as I was stitching, but not so much that I couldn’t follow the previous stitching line.
I hope you found this helpful. Sorry it’s not a bunch of pretty fabric pictures, but hopefully someone out there in the big wide interwebz will be glad to run across this post!
Be sure to visit Thread Stand Hero’s website for more information on the seam guide!
I’ve written an UPDATE on this post that you can find HERE.
Happy straight-line stitching!