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Elna Lock L5

jatman | Posted in Equipment and Supplies on

Does anyone out there have one of these?  I just got one at an estate sale and would love to know more about the machine.  Sewing Pattern Review only has 1 review of this machine and it’s really a brief one.  Any info would be helpful.  This is my first serger!




  1. alotofstitches | | #1

    Can you find a model number?  I have an ElnaLock Pro something (I'd have to look)

    Does it have a little computer screen on it?

    1. jatman | | #2

      Looks like the model number is L5.  It has that right on the front.  And there is no computer screen.  It is mechanical.  I bought it at an estate sale and the person who'd had it kept the book and the updates to the book.  The only thing I can find a date on is the update - it's from 1988.

      Thank you for answering my post!




      1. alotofstitches | | #3

        Good that you have the book that goes with it.  Does the L5 indicate it has 5 threads?  My Elna does as well.  On most sergers the "lower looper" is threaded first, then the "upper looper", then the needle.  I use 3 thread overlock for a seam finish ( meaning I thread the lower looper, upper looper, right needle)  Your tension disc/knobs should be color-coded to go with the threading chart.  It's a good idea to thread the serger in color of thread matching the color on the knob so that you can distinguish which thread is which for practice, then purchase good quality serger thread.  A balanced stitch is when the fabric lies flat , not wavy and the loops of the threads covering the fabric edge are formed at the cut edge of the fabric.  My Elna book suggested the tension settings and DID produce a balanced stitch.  If you did not get a pair of 6 inch tweezers, you'll need to purchase one as it's impossible to thread a serger without them.  Some folks tied knots of the existing thread to the new thread and pulled all that thru the tension disc--NOT A GOOD IDEA!  They are not hard to thread but just takes a little practice.

        I upgraded to another serger a few years back and I wanted another Elna but dealers are hard to find.  I have an 800 number that I've gotten my needles and kife blades from since I don't have a dealer.  It is a challenge to get them!

        1. jatman | | #4

          It actually does have 5 thread capacity as well as 4 and 3.  It also came with what I can only imagine is the original cones of thread that are color coded the same as the serger knobs and hints (there are little thread holders here and there with the same colors on them).  I'm not sure I would have bought it without the book since I've never had one before.  But I did get not only the original book (very large one with a sample of stitches in it) but also a small quick thread-it-this-way book.  I'm still having some trouble with threads breaking which seem to be coming from the cones themselves and not anywhere where the machine is threaded.  Strange.  At any rate, I found that the really nice fabric store I have close to me (Haberman's Fabric - they advertise in Threads) has a sewing machine store inside it.  They will give one on one classes for people bringing in their own equipment so I'm going to do that on Monday.  I'm pretty excited about that!  Hopefully I'll be serging in no time!

          Thank you for the info!  There really isn't an Elna dealer all that close to me so I will likely have some difficulty finding parts, too.


          1. MaryinColorado | | #6

            I was taught that most sergers recommend threading the upper looper, then turn the handwheel toward you until the upper looper is all the way to the left.  (Then some sergers have a bar that you push so the lower looper lines up right with two holes showing through it.  These are threaded at the same time for the lower looper.  Then you turn the handwheel toward you and they release.)  This makes the lower looper thread go above the upper looper thread.  (The other way causes threads to break and can bend the loopers.)  Then thread the left needle then the right needle.

            After threading I always put the threads under the presserfoot to keep them from tangling.  Some people simply hold the threads with their hand (avoiding that dangerous cutting blade though). 

            Hope this helps and hope I didn't step on any toes. 

            Edited 7/6/2009 1:37 am by MaryinColorado

          2. jatman | | #7

            Thank you for taking the time to put that in writing.  I think I will print that off and take it to my class today.  I'm hoping to walk out of the class with full knowledge of how to thread and use the serger although that may be too ambitious - I may have to go back a few times!


        2. byf | | #5

          That is strange.I have a 5 thread Elna serger (Pro 5 DC) and the upper looper is threaded before the lower looper.

          1. alotofstitches | | #8

            My mistake!  I was visualizing the upper looper but wrote the lower looper.  The upper IS THREADED FIRST, then the lower.

          2. MaryinColorado | | #9

            You are so knowledgeable, I just knew it was something like a typo.  We all do it sometimes, it reminds us we are humans, right?  Mary

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