What Size Sewing Machine Needle for Rayon

Composition of a sewing machine needle

The sewing machine is made up of 5 important elements: the heel, the groove, the groove, the eye, and the point.

  • the heel: standard on family sewing machines, it varies in length to adapt to the tip. On industrial sewing machines, the size, length, and width change on each machine.
  • The throat: this is the thinnest part of the needle, often a source of breakage or bent needles. But impossible to thicken it, firstly because this is where the hook catches the upper thread to tie knots and because it allows you to break a needle rather than damage the hook in the event of contact.
  • The lateral groove: a sort of furrow dug along the needle, it is this which allows the thread to follow the needle correctly during stitching.
  • The eye: is the hole that allows the thread to pass through the needle. Perfectly smooth, it is polished so that the thread does not wear out, break, or jam. Of different sizes, the eye adapts to the size of the thread used.
  • The tip: an important part of the needle, it will not be the same depending on the fabric. Pointed for thick and dense fabrics, rounded for fine and fragile fabrics. It is therefore important to adapt it for each fabric.
sewing machine needle

On this diagram, we see the different kinds of needles according to the fabrics. Schmetz sets up a color coding for greater ease in recognizing a needle when it is no longer in its original package.

The needle: source of sewing quality

Always remember to choose your needle carefully. First, choose quality needles. ( Schmetz at the best quality, Bohin is also not bad). Indeed, poor-quality needles are often the source of problems. Firstly because they are not regular, they can undergo a bad treatment on the coating at the end of machining and don’t cause you a lot of problems.

The different types of sewing machine needles

A sewing machine needle must therefore be suitable for your sewing machine but also and above all for the fabric being worked on. If you use a sharp needle for silk, for example, you will cut the fibers and damage your fabric. Whereas if you take a round-tipped needle (jersey or microtex) then you won’t have a problem. And vice versa, a blunt point will not be able to sew thick fabrics without forcing, which will lead to premature wear of the needle, harder work of the sewing machine and therefore in the end a needle that breaks and a sewing machine that can be damaged.

different sewing machine needles
needle typetip typeTo work onRecommended sizes
Standard/UniversalIntermediate tipNatural fabrics.Synthetic fabrics.Shirt, dress.Suits, canvas, cloth.Table linen, coat.60,707070, 8080, 9090, 100
JerseyRound tipJersey, Jersey fin.Lycra, Dorlastan.7080, 90
MicrotexVery fine tipVery fine fabrics: silk, microfiber.60 – 80
StretchBall tipKnitting and curtains.Coarse knit.75, 9090
AddTriangle tip and fluteLeather and imitation leather.Thick leather.80, 90100
Jeans and firm fabricsFine chrome tipPlastic and oilcloth.Jeans, corduroy, denim.Overalls, thick jeans.9090 – 110100, 110
TopstitchFine point with a large eye for topstitchingStitches on padded fabric.75, 90

Sewing machine needles: correspondence between American and European sizes

American systemEuropean system
860
965
1070
1175
1280
1490
14100
16110
18120
19130

FAQ

Which needle size should I select?

In this part, we are going to give you an order of magnitude to help you see more clearly in all these sizes available on the market.

For this, we have made a table that shows, by material, which needle diameter is suitable for which fabric.

A basic to know is that:

  • the smaller the diameter of the needle, the better it will be for light, thin fabrics.
  • the larger the diameter of the needle, the more it will be suitable for resistant fabrics (which need to leave enough space for the thread to pass correctly).

Which brand of needle to choose?

There are not 36 brands when it comes to needles, in fact, there are so few that it will be hard to go wrong.

And we advise to stay on these brands there simply, because a box of needles has a ridiculous price and that these signs manufacture their needle in a specific material, which will not necessarily be true for everyone.

SCHMETZ : If you have only one great name to know in the family field, this is it.

When to change the needle?

It is advisable, to give you a quantifiable idea, to change the needle every 6 to 8 hours of sewing.

A blunt needle or one that begins to twist will emit a rather peculiar “tapping” noise. If you think your machine is making more noise than usual, start by changing the needle.

You really don’t have to wait, a worn needle will tend to strain the machine, break dangerously or even hit somewhere…

How to stitch Softshell?

A rather sensitive material where it will be necessary to avoid unnecessary bites as much as possible.

special Microtex needle is highly recommended, with a diameter between 60 and 80.

Needle for sewing Terry Cloth

For terry cloth, we recommend a Standard (Universal) size 90 needle.

Be careful though, it must be in good condition or even new.

Which needle to sew Lycra?

To sew the Lycra, a special Stretch needle will be of great help.

We advise to stay on reasonable sizes, a diameter of 70 will be perfect!

Sewing Elastic Fabric by Machine

In this case, you will need to choose a needle specially designed for Stretch. Its tip is rounded to avoid snagging the fabric.

A diameter of 75 is recommended, regardless of the thickness of the fabric .

Equip your machine to sew plastic.

To sew plastic, you will need a needle with a fine point, at best a needle for Jeans.

We advise you to stay between 90 and 110 with regard to the diameter of this one.

Which needle to use for Satin?

Satin is a very sensitive material, a small diameter (70/80 maximum) is recommended to avoid deforming the fabric too much.

Universal needle will be perfect with its so-called normal tip, the fabric will be pierced “tenderly”.

Sewing Crepe, which needle to choose?

To sew crepe without any worries, a size 60 Microtex will be perfect.

Jacquard with the right needle

Standard needle will do just fine. Needle size of 90 to 100 will be perfect.

How to sew the Minkee or Minky?

Stretch needle will be suitable for sewing these materials which should be avoided as much as possible.

It is for this reason that the point must be balled.

Diameter 90 and voila!

Voile is its typical needle

For anything that is sheer, cotton, silk or even synthetic, it is advisable to stay on a Standard (Universal) needle. The normal tip is perfectly suited for this type of fabric.

However, very small size is recommended, a diameter 60 is a must.

Sewing suede?

As for leather and faux leather, you guessed it, for suede you will need to use a special leather needle.

Its triangular sharp point will have the effect of effectively piercing the material and thus letting the wire pass as it should with a diameter of 90 or 100.

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