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I started using my mom's sewing machine for the first time a Silvercrest SNM 33 B1 sewing machine, but the thread on it keeps snapping.
Why does this happen? Is it my needle's fault or are the threads bad?

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  • can you provide the model number of your machine? May 20 at 22:32
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    The model number is a SNM 33 B1 one as I edited into my original question. May 21 at 16:58
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    I updated my answer with a few more things you can try. Unfortunately snapping thread is one of those problems that happens when just about anything goes wrong on a sewing machine, so the solution is to check/fix/improve/replace/redo one thing at a time, and keep fixing things until the machine works. Sometimes walking away, having a glass of water, and coming back will fix the problem, and you'll never really know what went wrong or how it got fixed. Magical elves, perhaps?
    – csk
    May 21 at 20:05
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Many sewing machine issues can be resolved by simply removing the thread and re-threading it. Your machine's manual should have a diagram showing how to insert the thread. Even if you're sure you already know how to thread the machine, find that diagram and follow it step by step. You may find that you've been missing a step, or putting the thread in the wrong place.

Even if you don't figure out what the issue was, sometimes re-threading will solve it anyway. The thread may have been getting snagged or dragging somewhere along its path, and by re-threading it, you may fix that issue.

As you feed the thread, watch for any places that seem rough, or slots that seem tight. Manually pull the thread back and forth through each slot and around each turn, checking to see if it snags or tugs anywhere. It should pull smoothly through/around each point.

Here's a troubleshooting guide for the Silvercrest SNM 33 B1 machine. It basically says what I mentioned above, but it has diagrams for how to re-thread.

Make sure the bobbin is inserted in the correct orientation, as you can see in this snipped from the troubleshooting guide. My machine (which is a different brand) will work when the bobbin is in the wrong way, but the thread snags and snarls much more frequently.

enter image description here

Also check to make sure your needle is not bent, blunt, or damaged. If you can't tell, swap in a fresh needle just to be sure.

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  • Even if I rethread my sewing machine thread keeps on snapping. May 20 at 7:23
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    have you checked the tension? May 20 at 11:20
  • Sometimes the diagram misses or simplifies a crucial early step. E.g. on mine, it says to raise the needle for threading, but if raising by hand you actually have to turn the wheel until the needle is about to drop again, or it's very hard to catch the thread guide on the take-up lever.
    – Chris H
    May 20 at 13:01
  • very frequently you will need to turn the flywheel by hand, especially to thread the needle. unless it has an automatic threader, what’s the model number? May 20 at 17:48
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It could also be the threads fault. I've had similar problems very recently.

I sewed some seams with new synthetic thread and never had a problem. Then I switched colors and grabbed a random spool from my moms stash and the thread snapped several times. It was a spool of cotton thread that was at least 20 years old and the thread was slightly thicker (I had more problems getting it through the needle). I still don't know where exactly the thread snags, but switching between both colors several times confirmed that only the old cotton thread had this problem.


Another possibility is that the bobbin isn't inserted correctly. I had that problem when I just started sewing on a machine and didn't notice that the bobbin of my machine jams sometimes. Most of the time it pulled long loops (as seen here), but sometimes the upper thread snagged somewhere in the bobbin compartment and snapped.

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  • A thread fault I've had: I happened to have a reel of cheap thread the right colour for a small job, so didn't buy specially. A rough bit of plastic on the flange of the reel occasionally snagged the thread a caused it to snap a couple of times. After trimming the plastic the problem went away
    – Chris H
    May 24 at 14:10

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