Bernina® 1630 Questions and Answers
The Qs & As are divided into two sections -- 'general 1630 questions' and 'specific to the Designer Software'. Any question that isn't linked needs an answer. If you can help out, please do so! Just post your answer to the 1630 list (so everyone can benefit) and we'll get it on the FAQ as soon as possible. Don't be shy!
General 1630 Questions
(This is just the list of questions. Click on the question to read the answer.)
Questions Specific to the Bernina® Designer Software
Questions and Their Answers
(Longer answers get their own pages; shorter answers are here.)
General 1630 Questions
This is an (e-)mailing list provided by Martie Sandell and sponsored by Quiltropolis and is open to the discussion of any questions or comments relating to the Bernina® 1630. Go to the Quiltropolis site and click on the "Mail Lists" link to see more lists or to sign up. It's also possible to get archived digests so you can read past answers, tips and tricks. When you sign up for the list, you'll be emailed instructions on how to get them.
Q 2. What are the different memory areas? How are MR areas and keys related?
Q 3. How do I save a stitch that I've designed to a key?
Q 4. What is the purpose Stitch Designer?
Stitch Designer enables you to develop your own stitch patterns on the sewing machine. You may be able to duplicate stitches from the many different brands of machines. You can create a library of stitches.
Q 5. Where do people get the inspiration for their stitch designs?
Bernina® has leaflets with detailed instructions for drawing a variety of stitches. Check with your dealer for the leaflets. The leaflets will also help you learn to use the Stitch Designer. Once you get the feel and get to know your way around the Stitch Designer, you start getting ideas of your own. You can look at simple line drawings and draw these on your Stitch Designer. Curves are harder to draw, but can be done.
Q 6. What types of projects do people use their stitches on?
Just about anything ...clothing (vests, down the front or across the back of jackets, down the front of blouses, collars, just about any clothing), decorator items, designing crazy quilt stitches and applying them to vests, quilts, wall hangings. Some quilters use a unique stitch pattern they designed for securing stitches on quilts.
Q 7. How do you combine stitches to produce one design (e.g. using a vase design and combining it with a flower design so that you end up with a 'flower on a vase' design)?
First, you need to visualize that the 1630 sews from the left side of the design screen to the right. So, you draw the vase lying on its side, with the top of the vase on the right side of the screen. Start drawing your design in the center of the vases opening. Now, draw the entire vase, making sure you end in the same spot where you started. The next step is to draw the flowers. Open a new window, but this time start on that same line only on the left side of the screen. (Use the ruler from the first screen as a guide). The important part is starting at the exact same spot on the opposite side of the screen (the vase ended on the right, in the middle) Open a new screen and start on the same line, at the edge of the screen and start drawing the flowers). Always save the design before opening a new screen or before sewing. To save you use the down arrow next to the SP memory. Go back to the 1-24 memory screen and open MR enter the memory box that the vase was in and the memory box that the flowers are in next. If you have started in the exact same point that you ended you should have the flowers in the vase. Don't forget Pattern End.
Q 8. When you combine stitches, how do you link the end point of one with the start point of the other?
The above answer (Q6) is also applicable to this question. Remember that the machine sews from left to right and you can duplicate that on the design screen by starting on the left and ending your drawing on the right in the exact same line only at the end on the right of that line. If you do this, the design will sew out in a continuous line in the same manner as the built-in stitches on the sewing machine.
Q 9. Can I email an ISD file to someone, or does it have to be downloaded from somewhere?
You can email an ISD file to someone, just as you would email any other attachment. The critical factor is whether or not your email software (and the receiver's email software) can support file attachments of any kind. Be aware that sending large files is time-consuming (on both ends). Try to "zip" or compress files before sending to save time.
Q 10. What's the difference between the Stitch Designer on the 1630, and the personal computer program called "Bernina Designer?"
Stitch Designer is a computer designing tool that is part of the 1630 machine. The 1630's computer allows you to design stitches on screen and save them to Memory (pp. 56-59 of the manual) or to download them to a blank memory key inserted in the right side of your machine. Blank keys retail for $80-$100. To help you utilize this resource, check with your dealer for these booklets:
Also see the "Stitch Designer" sections of the 1630 Library pamphlets.
Note: Gina Butler has posted additional information about the stitches that she designed for the Heirloom Stitches Booklet. They are available in the 1630 List Archives or by writing to Gina directly at email@example.com
Bernina also has a separate software package called Bernina Designer which PC users can install on 386 or higher computers. This software lets you create and edit stitches on your PC, then transmit those stitches to your 1630 sewing machine. Included are manual, installation disks, and a cable with key at the end through which stitches on the computer are transmitted to the 1630. In addition to stitches you can design "from scratch", the program gives you the capability of importing scanned images or clipart; however, it only recognizes the bmp format. Once the image has been imported into Bernina Designer, you have the choice of (a) using the Autotrace function to set the stitches around the image or (b) manually clicking around the design to set stitches. Using the Autotrace function involves some cleanup afterward because its automatic function gives you no control over the order of the individual stitches that make up the stitch pattern. A unique feature of the software is its ability to open stitches in selected Pfaff .PCQ and .PCD formats. The software has sample stitches and additional stitches are available for download from http://www.Berninausa.com in Designer News.
It is important to know that these are outline stitches. Although the Designer software features zigzag and triple stitches, in no way can you achieve the elaborate fills available with embroidery machines as the Deco 500 and 600 or similar machines. Bernina® released Version 1.0 of the Bernina Designer software in 93 or 94 and Version 2.0 in 1995. If you do not presently have the Bernina® Designer software package and wish to purchase it, it our recommendation that you purchase the complete Version 2.0 package. This should include the version 2 software on two floppy disks, a nine pin serial interface cable, and manual. Retail varies, check with your dealer.
Q 11. How can I make my machine stitch one stitch sequence? ?
When I design a stitch and get ready to stitch it out, I select "Transmit stitch to sewing machine" under the Pattern menu. Then I select the computer icon, then '1' in the counter bar to indicate I only want one repetition. However, the machine does not stop but continues stitching, often starting the stitch about 1/16" inch from the first one.
From Faye Phillips: Select the pattern end function. The machine will stop at the end of one pattern. You can select 2-9 also to sew the pattern more than once.
Q 12. Is it possible to stitch out any of the designs with double needles? Triple needles? Double threads?
From Faye Phillips:
This depends on the design. if the design has 9mm zig zag then using a double needle wouldn't work. The double and triple needles have machine limitations according to the width between the needles. Double threads are no problem.
Q 25. How do I delete everything from a Memory Key in one step?
If your machine memories are all blank, insert the Memory Key and turn on the machine. When the K and L (EXT) menus show that the Memory key (arrows and M) is recognized. You then place the cursor on the machine side in the SP space, the 1-25 memories will darken, then select the check and the blank memories on the 1-25 of the machine transfer to the Key. What ever was in the key is gone. To clear the MR memories in one step you select the MR on the machine side and select the check at the top of the screen and the blank MR memories will transfer to the Key.
Q 26. How do I clear the MR and SP memory areas on the sewing machine in one step?
To clear MR and SP memories on the sewing machine you will need a blank memory key and transfer from the Key side to the machine side as explained in Q25.
Q 27. What are the corrections to the Borders Pamphlet?
There is a misprint in the Borders pamphlet on Page 5, # 3. The first line of Row # 2 is incorrect, the second line is correct. It should read:
Q 31. I'm having trouble putting on the walking foot. Any suggestions?
My dealer taught me to use the knee lift to get the walking foot on the knee lift lifts up the post higher so you can slip the walking foot under easier while at the same time trying to get the claw over the post.
Q 32. Can I use a magnetic pin holder near my 1630? Would this cause any damage to the 1630?
The answer is YES to all of these questions. Bernina has made internal provisions to prevent them affecting the machine.
Q 33. I have a chance to buy a used 1630. Please describe the Bernina 1630's features and tell me whats included with each new machine when its new.
Q 34. What exactly does the "Update 96" include? What differences does it make with my machine?
Q 35. I'm having trouble making buttonholes. The manual says to press the "securing button" at the end of the length that you want. But that's not working (or I'm not sure what the "securing button" is).
From Carol Evans:
Questions Specific to Bernina®Designer Software
Q 13. Can I convert a Pfaff PCD file or a Pfaff PCQ file into a Bernina Designer (ISD) file?
See the write-up on Converting Pfaff files to Bernina ISD files.
Q 14. Explain the different memory areas. Which ones are related to the Designer Software? Can I upload stitches in a key to the Designer software and edit it?
See the definitions of the different memory areas as well as the info on Using Blank Memory Keys.
Q 15. Can I transfer stitches from my software to a blank memory key?
From Faye Phillips:
Yes, after a file is sent form the computer to the memory of sewing machine it can be written to a blank card the same way a design that is done in the Stitch Designer is sent to a memory key. However, I find this a waste of a blank card since you can save the design to you computer's hard drive. Any time you want to use it again you can just re-send to the sewing machine.
Yes, download the stitches from the software to MR (memory) on sewing machine first, then save to a key.
It depends on whether your sewing machine is always next to your computer. If not, you have to weigh the cost of the key against lugging your machine to the computer each time you want to use a stitch pattern that came from Bernina Designer.
For step-by-step instructions, see the info on Using Blank Memory Keys.
Q 16. Can I transfer stitches from the MR memory on my sewing machine to the software? Can the stitches on the Border key be loaded into the software so that I can edit them?
From Faye Phillips:
No. Think of the cable from your computer to the machine as a one way street. Files can only go one way.
Q 17. How can I make Designer stitch one pattern?
From Faye Phillips:
Select the pattern end function. The machine will stop at the end of one pattern. You can select 2-9 also to sew the pattern more than once.
Q18. When I print a design to my inkjet, it prints too large, even though on screen it's in the actual size mode. Is it possible to print out the ISD design in actual size, so that I can cut out the design and use it to test on the fabric for position, alignment?
To Print a Template for Sewing Placement
To Print Design showing Stitching Numbers and Rulers
To Print Bitmap only
Q 30. Can I delete V 1.0 of the software after I've installed V 2.0?
Yes, you can delete version 1.0. Be careful not to delete your ISD files!
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