How to choose an overlock machine | expert advice?

How to choose an overlock machine | expert advice

Sewing the overlock machine edges of the fabric of sewn clothes was once done manually and had the sole purpose of protecting the edge of the product from shedding. Later, manufacturers managed to adapt the sewing machine for edging, and such a seam acquired a second meaning – to make the thing neat and beautiful even from the inside out. A real breakthrough in sewing was the creation of an overlock – a device specifically designed for processing sections of any materials. How to choose an overlock that will become a reliable help in your work is easy to learn from overlock machines from reviews on the Internet or from consultants in specialized stores. This device is widely used by both beginners and professional seamstresses.

What is an overlock and what is it for?

Overlocks are devices similar to sewing overlock machines, but their function is to process sections of the material with threads. After overcasting on the overlock, the fabric does not crumble and does not open, and the edge looks neat and beautiful. Sewing is also available for some models of overlocks: they grind parts of knitwear and things from stretching fabrics.

Overlocks have a high demand in both home sewing overlock machines and industrial production of garments. The household appliance performs 3 operations quickly and efficiently at once: it connects the parts, cuts off the excess fabric and processes the edge using from 2 to 4 threads. The strongest seam is obtained with four threads. The device can cover the edge with flat and chain seams, make decorative and stitching stitches. Industrial overlock performs hemming, inverted, finishing and many other types of seams. At the same time, it binds from 2 to 8 threads, automatically selecting them and switching the number depending on the density of the material.

Advantages and disadvantages of the device

overlock machines are needed not only so that the fabric does not crumble, and the edge looks beautiful. They provide strength to the seams thanks to several threads that wrap around the edge. For beginning tailors, the advantage of the device is that it does not tear and does not tighten delicate fabrics, quickly switching from one line to another. Plus overlocks in the possibility of using different legs for work, which expands the functions of the device. Users consider the undoubted advantage of an overlock machine is its quick payback, even if you work with it non-intensively.

What are the disadvantages of overlocks:

  • noisy work;
  • with constant use, vibration is possible;
  • instability on the table surface (some manufacturers began to supply the devices with suction cups that stabilize the position of the overlock on the countertop);
  • complicated threading.

Additional features

For an overlock machine, picking up an edge and making beautiful ruffles is an easy task. With the help of additional legs, he creates frills, sews braid and fur edging. The device is indispensable in working with knitwear, clothes for athletes from stretching materials, and underwear. For convenience, there is an additional opportunity to correct some parameters: for example, change the speed of the ridges of the differential conveyor so that the line on the knitwear does not turn out wavy. Correction of the stitch length will speed up work with fabrics of different densities.

Many overlock machines are equipped with video discs, which in detail demonstrates the additional capabilities of the device. Fashion technology has not only changed the way | How computers are shaping the future of Fashion?

Overlock or sewing machine

When the overlock function is provided in the sewing machine, the beginning dressmaker may find it sufficient to work with different fabrics. But professional craftsmen know that an overlock seam in a sewing machine cannot replace an overlock. The sewing machine only performs overcasting with 2 threads, while with an overlock you can literally knit the edge with three or four threads.

An overlock machine has a harder stitch than a machine, and the seam is elastic and stretches along with the fabric without tearing, which is not possible with machine sewing. This elasticity of the seams makes the overlock for knitwear and other stretching materials indispensable. Like the machine, the overlock works at different speeds, which is convenient for delicate operations that require concentration.

Types of Overlocks

Among overlocks, there is a choice between models depending on the number of threads that are used in the work.


How to choose the right type of overlock:

Some models of a 5-thread overlock perform the functions of a sewing machine, making the corresponding seam.

If the overlock machine capabilities are connected to the flashcard, such a device is called a carpet lock. Its main characteristic is the ability to make a flat seam on stretching products from stretch and knit materials. This seam is elastic and reliable because 5 threads are used for it. It stretches along with the fabric, and the threads do not break at the same time.

Main selection criteria

The overlock machine manufacturers offer a large selection of models that differ in features and price. At the same time, the cost of the selected machine can be low when recruiting the most important operations, which are enough to work at home.


Which overlock is better to buy – key parameters when choosing:

  • the number of loopers – it depends on them how many seams and what quality can be used in the work;
  • the availability of loopers – they will have to thread the threads, and this should be convenient;
  • power – the more functional the device, the higher this indicator is needed;
  • threading – mechanical is more complicated and cheaper; pneumatic is faster and more expensive;
  • tension control – manually suitable for experienced seamstresses; with tensioners, there are few opportunities for lines; with a computer, traffic controller is convenient but expensive;
  • stitch width – the wider the greater the opportunity for creating decorative stitches and zigzags;
  • stitch length – the smaller, the stronger the finished seam will be;
  • adjustment of the presser foot – determines the thickness of the fabric with which the overlock is ready to work; the best option – with infinitely adjustable.

Additional options affecting the choice:

When purchasing an overlock machine, it is better to choose a model equipped with spare paws, care tools, needles, a hard case.

The best models of overlocks of different types and purposes

It is possible to name the best overlock model only by comparing devices with a similar set of capabilities and purpose.

Price policy

The cost of an overlock depends on which company the device is equipped with and what functionality. Among the expensive ones are models manufactured under the Pfaff brand. They work as professional devices, equipped with many functions while being simple and convenient as household overlock machines. The world leaders in the production of sewing devices – the Janome and Brother brands have both budget models and expensive devices. Overlocks of lesser-known manufacturers are available at a low price – for example, Merrylock.

Expert advice

Specialists pay attention: if the masters are confused by difficulties with threading in the overlock, you can choose an overlock machine model where this function is automated. An example of a universal overlock with automatic threading is Pfaff HobbyLock 2.0. It is equipped with extra legs to make regular stitches on fabrics and zigzags.

Expert Advice overlock machine:

  • buy overlock for home use with a sewing speed of at least 1300 st./min .;
  • supplement your overlock with a guide of a seam – this will significantly save time;
  • Do not neglect regular cleaning of running parts from dust, particles of fabric and threads, so that the device lasts longer.

Customer reviews

The best overlock machine is the Janome MyLock 714. Olga: “I am satisfied with the line, it turns out like a factory one. Conveniently refuel threads. Like differential feed fabric. It is easy to sew cuffs with it or, if necessary, stretch the fabric. Acquired after a month of searching and doubt. I myself sew professionally, objectively recommend it. ”

Overlock Brother 3034D. Alexei: “I chose a car for permanent work since I sew 3-4 things a week, there are no complaints. For a year and a half did not require repair, the knife was not dull. It works with chiffon, knitwear, and coats and does not require a fundamental change in the settings for seams. Easy threading. ”

Overlock Juki MO-654DE. Ulyana: “Makes a high-quality seam on all types of fabric – from chiffon to denim and faux fur, forms frills on thin material. To switch from one seam to another, simply select a different knife and feed setting. The car is reliable, for 3 years it did not require repair. ”

Overlock Merrylock 005. Alyona: “A good overlock machine for a beginner, easy to use. As a drawback – there are no examples of how to make different lines, which is inconvenient for a beginning seamstress ”

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