Front Loading Bobbin

The Front-Loading Bobbin

These days, mostly all of the machines manufactured by Janome use a Horizontal Rotary Hook Bobbin also known as the Top Loading bobbin style. (Image below)

It’s no secret this is the easy, convenient and one of the most reliable bobbin styles we all have come to know and love. You just drop your bobbin in, make sure the thread is in the correct thread path, and you’re ready to sew. It’s sew quick and easy!

But there is still another very common bobbin style that we still use today in many of our machines. It would be a shame to overlook this style as it traces back to the roots of Janome. It’s called the Front Loading Vertical Oscillating Hook style bobbin, or simply Front Loading Bobbin. (image below)

Looking at this style of bobbin is a glimpse of what our company’s founder, Yosaku Ose, created over 100 years ago, and it’s easy to see why folks called it the Snake Eye style. With the front-loading bobbin style, you must first insert the wound bobbin into the bobbin case, before inserting the entire bobbin case into the machine. This is a traditional style of bobbin insertion that many machines have used over the years. To the new sewists, this may seem very odd, but this style was the norm, and industrial, or high-speed sewing machines still continue to use this style today.

In this post, we are going to go over the basics, and show you how to properly remove and clean the Front Loading Vertical Hook Style Bobbin. 

The entire shuttle race assembly is made up of 4 parts.

Bobbin– this is the most easily recognizable item

Bobbin Case– The wound bobbin gets inserted into this case (pictured above)

Shuttle– the bobbin case rests inside of this item as it spins

Shuttle Race Cover– this holds the entire shuttle race assembly together

Model used to demo is the Janome HD1000

To begin, make sure your machine is turned off and unplugged. 

* Pro Tip– Rest the machine flat on its back. This will make the removal and installation of the parts much easier.

Raise the needle bar to its highest point and remove the Bobbin Case.

Push the shuttle race levers aside. These are 2 small horn-shaped levers on either side of the Shuttle Race Cover.

Lift the Shuttle Race Cover and take the Shuttle out. 

Clean in and around the hook race area using a soft brush, or clean rag. 

Slowly turn the handwheel as you clean; a micro vacuum attachment is useful here as well. 

Once completed, return the needle to the highest position. 

Begin reinstalling the Shuttle Race Assembly starting with the Shuttle – this is the smaller disc-shaped item. Do not force it. This item will gently fall into place as long as the needle is in the highest position.

Next, place the Shuttle Race Cover on top being sure to line up the grooves. Do not force it. This will also line up as long as the needle is in the highest position.

Gently slide the levers into place until they click. Be sure that the levers line up with the raised grove on the Shuttle Race Cover. They both will click when correctly lined up.

You can now reinstall the Bobbin case

When it comes to choosing the right accessories for the Front Loading Models be sure to use the Janome Accessory Compatibility Guide.

Cleaning your shuttle race area should be done about every 3 months. More if you sew more frequently. It is important to keep the moving parts of your machine clean and free of debris to allow your machine to provide optimal sewing at all times.

Happy Sewing!

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2 Responses to Front Loading Bobbin

  1. Darrene says:

    Thank you for this! I have an older mechanical janome and want to keep it going as best I can.


    • janomeman says:

      Thank you for your feedback, Darrene. My first Janome was a mechanical machine, too, which is still going strong 30 years later though regular cleaning and maintenance. Definitely a great return on investment! Happy Sewing!


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