Rotary Hook vs Oscillating Hook Sewing Machine Systems

I want to begin by discussing the differences between the rotary hook and also oscillating hook and also the resulting mechanical needs required for each and every system to operate properly. To do this we need to initially understand the interpretation and also the function of the hook. Despite the vintage or the producer of your sewing machine, if they utilize a rounded bobbin afterwards they will absolutely use a rotary or oscillating sort of hook system. We will certainly be assessing the differences, the performance, as well as the adaptability of both the rotary hook as well as also the oscillating hook. This write-up could contain affiliate web links. Getting things from the internet link costs you definitely nothing even more and includes a few pennies to the fabric budget.

What does the sewing machine hook do?

The term (hook) defines the ring with a sharp finger that borders the bobbin case. The needle brings the leading thread down through the product while the hook is revolving around the bobbin. When the needle reaches lowest level of its coming down traveling and also starts up-wards a little loop is created in the leading thread right behind the needle. This loop is hauled up with the needle. The hook modifications are timed so the point of the finger goes with the loop, catching the thread and also pulling it down as the needle continues up. This procedure is the very same no issue if it is a rotary system or an oscillating system. Within the next quarter of a transformation, the difference in between the 2 becomes noticeable. If the changes are counterclockwise, our needle is still taking a trip upwards as our hook passes the 3:00 position on a clockwise rotating hook as well as 9:00. The easiest way to identify clockwise or counterclockwise is to take a look at the factor of the hook. The aspect essentially leads the hook. If it directs right it transforms ideal or CW, if it guides left then it is CCW. This video discloses it in large style to make it easier to understand.

Shuttle Hook VS rotary hook for sewing machine


As the needle comes down the take-up bar (arm) on the head of the machine is positioning itself to raise the leading thread up as well as tighten up the stitch by drawing the slack from the loop up against the take-up springtime and also inevitably the tension disks themselves.

Rotary Hook sewing machine



Oscillating Shuttle Hook sewing machine


We have had a number of people get to out wishing to see the hooks in fact transferring to obtain a better visual. Mel placed together a short video clip revealing both hooks moving.

Then the physics of the stitch formation stays the same but how the leading thread is lugged and launched differs, if we are utilizing an oscillating hook system. An oscillating hook gets the top thread precisely like a rotary hook. However as opposed to carrying the loop totally around the bobbin it only carries it much sufficient past center for the stress of the needle pulling the thread up to pull the loop off of the factor of the hook. The loop still travels across the face of the bobbin as well as wraps the bobbin thread the very same way it does with a Rotary system. The take-up lever offers the same feature of getting rid of the slack from the loop and tightening the stitch as it did with a rotary system. The actual hook movement of an oscillating system stops as the loop is being released from the point and turns around instructions or travel. The needle does not quit or alter direction it continues to do its obligations. When the needle has reached the top and also draws back down the hook is still backwards, It remains in reverse till the needle has reached the bottom of its down stroke. Presently in time, the hook has turned around far enough for the point to get on the opposite side of the needle than it was when the loop was released. As the needle draws back up and also the loop begins to create, the hook modifications instructions once again so the point is leading it as the needle draws the loop up. When the needle draws the loop in front of the leading factor the hook selects it up and starts bring it down again to make one more stitch. This reversal of instructions is the basis for the name and also the term oscillating hook.

Oscillating Shuttle Hook VS rotary hook for sewing machine

Since we have actually covered the standard distinctions in between the 2 systems we will discuss some of the advantages as well as downsides of both systems. During this conversation, I will also be putting to rest several of the most usual mistaken beliefs that incorrectly misrepresent facts as well as complication regarding a really simple process.

Myth – Oscillating Hook Systems Make Weaker Seams

The first misconception I want to place to remainder is frustrating to me regarding how it ever became a mythology truth to begin with. Mythology facts are truths based upon fabulous myths. No one bears in mind exactly how they got going generations ago, no information to back up the misconception yet the myths are currently valid because they have been repeated for so lengthy they need to hold true. Rotary hook machines make specifically the exact same lock-stitch stitches as an oscillating hook. It is impossible to look at the 2 rows of stitches and also discriminate between the seams. They equal. To fall into the principle that either system makes a more powerful stitch is ludicrous.

Fact – Rotary Hook Systems Are Faster

Now for a touch of reality, rotary hook machines operate with much less resonance than an oscillating hook machine. They additionally have a tendency to be slightly quieter than an oscillating hook as well as they are usually the chosen system for high-speed machines. All 3 of these truths hold true because of the pressures at play as the oscillating hook should stop as well as turn around directions twice during a stitch as well as a rotary hook never ever transforms direction. The noise, speed, as well as vibration caused by the vibration are all straight associated to the start-stop movement of the hook.

Myth – Rotary Hook Systems Are Better

Now you might be assuming that the rotary hook system is much better. We will drop some light on a couple of different facts. Oscillating hook machines are simpler to make, they need less components which means they can be created at a greater rate leading to even more machines per hr therefore aiding to cut price per machine. The hook action is driven by balanced out cams and link between shafts, as a result, they do not need to make use of an interior belt or chain to keep the hook timing in sync with the needle timing. There are less rotating parts to use so they tend to call for less upkeep as well as are more flexible when it involves timing concerns. Currently it could look like the Oscillating hook might be a better layout.

Misconception – All Rotary Hook Machines Are Class 66 as well as Horizontally Orientated

While we give ourselves a break to absorb the information each in our own method I wish to close down a pair more deceptive concepts, such as all rotary hooks make use of class 66 bobbins as well as they are all horizontally related. Both are incorrect. Bobbin positioning has no bearing responsible system used in a machine. Neither does it issue which style bobbin the machine utilizes. Class 66 and class 15 bobbins might be the most generally identified bobbins generally, yet they are not the only ones supporting the lock stitch machines and also a lock stitch machine needs to have a round bobbin. Simply among others machines that do not use either course 66 or 15 bobbins. White made use of 2 various dimensions of bobbins in their lockstitch machines and also they originally made use of a really one-of-a-kind bobbin situation, not all Necchi machines utilize course 15 bobbins. Several producers have actually used Apollo bobbins (really close tolerances to a 66 however not fully interchangeable). Elna and also Bernina likewise have their very own bobbin and also hook designs while still sustaining the standard lockstitch. I’m certain I have actually possibly left some out however I wish to have actually obtained the idea across. Positioning as well as bobbin class have absolutely nothing to do with hook systems. Side loading, top loading, as well as front loading don’t identify the hook system.

Rotary Hook Machines Can Be Picky

The last thing I would love to share is partially my very own experience and research study. I am a little worried regarding stating this as a positive fact yet I have actually done the follow-up research on the experience so I do seem like it is worthwhile of being mentioned.

What I have experienced and then investigated to confirm is hard for me to fully comprehend. So right here it is wherefore it’s worth. When it comes to thread dimension, rotary systems appear to be particular. Then it may start skipping stitches, if the machine is established up for a heavier thread it will certainly perform simply fine but if the thread dimension is changed. If the timing is re-adjusted and needle height reset for the finer thread it will certainly once more be a best stitcher. As quickly as I tried to go back to a much heavier thread it began dropping stitches once again. And also again the solution was to reset the timing as well as needle elevation. I had fun with this on several different machines and also although some were more flexible than others they all appeared to be susceptible to acting in this manner. When I tried the same test in several of our different Oscillating hook machines I found that they are not nearly as finicky regarding changing thread sizes or kinds. The only times I would certainly see constant issues was when switching from a very heavy thread to an extremely great thread. It frustrates me because the physics as well as characteristics are identical when comparing the systems.


Do not fail to remember to take a look at our other sewing machine blog posts, learn more about repairing classic sewing machines, and also our patchwork patterns.

So what does all this truly suggest? Which hook system is the most effective? Well, I do not believe there is a single option. So I am going to give you my point of view and also let you make a decision what jobs best for you.

Oscillating Shuttle Hook VS rotary hook for sewing machine

Till following time as always enjoy your machines your method as well as may your needle strikes be rare.

If you require a fast machine state above 1200 stitches per min or you want a quieter smoother (less vibrations) machine it does not require to regularly alter thread dimension and also kinds then my ballot would be the Rotary, keeping in mind they need even more upkeep as a team than the Oscillating equivalent. By even more maintenance, I do not intend to imply they are bothersome. They are not. If provided exact circumstances side-by-side, the Rotary will need focus and tuned up prior to the Oscillating hook. If you have to take it to a shop or tear it down after 10 years of usage, you will most likely need to do it Oscillating machine prior to completion of the 11th year. If you do not normally sew at speeds over 1200 stitches per min as well as you sew a consistent program of transforming media after that the solution would certainly be an Oscillating hook system. With all this being said one ought to always keep in mind that anything mechanical will break, they all require routine upkeep as well as cleansing. Neither one of these systems is flawless and also with a little TLC either one of them will certainly give years of solution as well as pleasure for the average house sewing enthusiast. Right here in the Quilt Room, we use both systems as well as never ever provide much idea to what system we are making use of at the time. When one system’s advantage would make an ounce of distinction to the end outcomes of the project, we seldom have an event.

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