Low shank vs High shank sewing machine

When it comes to sewing machines, there are two main shanks: low and high. Each one has its unique benefits and drawbacks. In this blog post, we will discuss the differences between low and high shank machines so that you can decide which type is best for you.

What is a low shank sewing machine?

A low shank sewing machine is a sewing machine with a low-set sewing hook. This means that the space between the presser foot and the needle is shorter than in normal machines. Generally, a low shank machine is one whose length from the bottom of the presser foot to the center of the screw is half an inch. Low-shank sewing machines are sometimes also called low-shank or short-shank machines.

The benefit of low shank sewing machine

Low shank sewing machines are cheaper than high shank. These sewing machines are mostly used in household projects for simple sewing and embroidery work. Low shanks are user-friendly and, therefore best for beginner sewers and intermediate sewers.

What is a high shank sewing machine?

A high shank sewing machine is a special type of sewing machine. A high shank sewing machine has a taller-set bobbin case/hook, which means that the space between the presser foot and the needle is longer than on normal machines. High-shank sewing machines are sometimes also called long-shank or tall-shank machines.

Benefit of high shank sewing machine

A high shank sewing machine can accommodate all types of presser feet with ease, and it can be used in any fabric that requires high power when stitching to provide smooth and even stitching.
The use of high shank sewing machine is extensive, and it can be used in any job, from very light ones to heavy-duty ones.

Low shank vs High shank

Purpose

A low shank machine is mostly used for lightweight fabrics, while high shank machines are the complete opposite as they are made to sew thick fabrics with ease. In addition, most industrial machines have a high shank because of the heavy fabric.

Length

The shank length can also be a deciding factor when choosing between low and high shank machines. A low shank is about two inches shorter than a high shank, which may not seem like much, but it can make a big difference when working with bulky fabrics.

Presser foot

The presser foot is another critical difference between low and high shank machines. A low shank machine has a smaller presser foot that sits close to the needle, while a high shank machine has a larger presser foot that sits further away from the needle. This distance can be beneficial when working with heavyweight fabrics as it gives you more space to work.

Height

Low Shank machines are typically lower in height than high shank machines, making them a good choice for short or limited mobility.

Thread tension

The thread tension on a low shank machine is usually looser than on a high shank machine, which can be frustrating when you’re trying to sew heavyweight fabrics. However, the looseness also makes it a good choice for lightweight fabrics.

Performance

Overall, the performance of a low shank machine is better for lightweight fabrics, while high shank machines are more versatile and can be used for both lightweight and heavyweight fabrics. If you’re not sure which type of machine is best for you, it’s always a good idea to ask an experienced sewist or your local sewing shop

Compatibility

One final difference between low and high shank machines is their compatibility. Low shank machines are compatible with most standard presser feet, while high shank machines require special feet that are not as common. If you have a lot of different presser feet or plan to do a lot of quilting, then a high shank machine may be a better choice for you.

Why is The Low Shank Sewing Machine Better For Beginners?

The low shank sewing machine is often seen as the best option for beginners because it is easy to use and has a wide range of compatible presser feet. In addition, the lower height makes it easier for people with limited mobility to operate. If you are new to sewing, we recommend choosing a low shank machine over a high shank.

Does a Singer or Brother Produce High Shank Or Low Shank Sewing Machines?

Singer and Brother are two of the most popular brands of sewing machines, but they both produce machines with either a high or low shank. So, if you’re looking for a Singer or Brother machine, be sure to check what type of shank it has before making your purchase.

Are Juki manufactures Low Shank Sewing Machines?

Juki is a famous brand of sewing machines that specializes in industrial machines. While they produce some low shank machines, their main focus is on high shank machines. If you’re looking for a Juki machine, be sure to check the type of shank it has before making your purchase.

Are Janome Machines Low Shank?

Janome is a brand of sewing machines that produces both low and high shank machines. So, if you’re looking for a Janome machine, be sure to check what type of shank it has before making your purchase.

How Do I Know If I Need A High Shank Or Low Shank Sewing Machine??

The best way to determine which type of shank you need is to think about what types of fabrics you plan to sew. If you want to sew lightweight fabrics exclusively, then a low shank machine will be sufficient. However, if you’re going to sew heavyweight fabrics, then a high shank machine is the better option.

How to measure the Shank size of your Sewing Machine

If you’re not sure what type of shank your sewing machine has, there is a simple way to measure it. First, remove the presser foot and needle plate from your machine. Next, use a ruler to measure the length of the shank from the base of the machine to the top of the screw that holds on the presser foot. If the measurement is less than half, then your machine has a low shank; if it’s more than half inch, then your machine has a high shank.

Conclusion

While there are some similarities between low and high shank machines, there are also several key differences. If you’re not sure which type of shank your machine has, or if you’re unsure what type of machine is best for you, be sure to consult an experienced sewer.

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by Brain Miller
I am Brain Miller, author of the Sewing feature web. I am excited to have you here. As a passionate sewer, I want to share my knowledge and experience with others by providing helpful tips, tricks, product reviews, and more. My goal is to provide readers with honest content that helps them in sewing.