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Viking Iris Buttonhole problem

BNR | Posted in Equipment and Supplies on

Dear List,

I was wondering if anyone could help me with a buttonhole problem I’m having with my 2004 Viking Iris sewing machine.  It has an automatic buttonhole and the problem is that no matter how I try, on the last leg of the button hole, the machine overshoots the crosswise stitching at the bottom. I have followed the manual religiously to no avail. I checked with the dealer and he says that this is a “known problem” with this machine and there is no fix. I tried contacting the company but they were not helpful. Has anyone had similar problems that could offer a suggestion?





  1. SkiNsew | | #1

    Is your buttonholer that little black circle thing that plugs into the machine and is called a Sensor holer?  I have a Viking Lisa (1999) that has one of these and I find it to be very finicky.  Here are things that I must do without fail to produce a quality buttonhole.

    1.  There must be tearaway stabilizer on the back of the fabric so that it feeds evenly.  If the fabric is nubby you must put the tearaway stabilizer on the top too.

    2.  I reduce the thread tension a bit (usually 3) and I also reduce the foot pressure to between 2 & 3.

    3.  And of course follow all the info in the instruction manual.

    4.  Hold the fabric taunt while the machine stitches the buttonhole but be careful not to pull it.

    Sometimes I still have to use the buttonhole C foot, if the fabric is not smooth.  Let me know if this works for you. 



    1. MaryinColorado | | #2

      I use a water soluble stabilizer on top.  Underneath, if the tearaway doesn't work, try two layers or a firmer one.  Good luck!  I hope you will email the Viking website and let them know of your delimma and the dealer's response!  They have been very good about responding when I have contacted them.  Mary

      1. BNR | | #3

        Thanks very much for these suggestions. I do have the sensor foot but find that it does not solve the problem. I haven't tried the stabilizers but I will do so shortly as I'm currently finishing a shirt project.Best Regards

  2. SewTruTerry | | #4

    Refresh my memory when the Iris is stitching the buttonhole does it sew the left bar in reverse then stitch up to the begining and do the bar tack and sew in reverse the right side of the buttonhole?  Is so you may want to have it serviced you haven't already because it sounds as though there might be a timing problem that is easy to solve.  Also does it always do this on every buttonhole on the same fabric ?
    Or just certain fabrics?  If the answer is to the first question is yes and no on the second the stabilizer is the solution.  Otherwise you need to have it serviced.

    Also are you dealing with a dealer?  Does he/she sell other brands?  Try contacting a Viking Sewing Gallery you will usually find them in all of the larger JoAnn Fabric stores.  Since all they sell is Vikings you will get better advise then "it is known problem".  It sounds as though your dealer wants to step you up to a bigger machine.  Good Luck and let me know what happens.

    1. BNR | | #5

      Dear Sewtrueterry,

      Yes, you are correct about how the button hole is sewn by the machine.

      I've only tried one type of fabric with it so far, kind of a heavy cotton twill which I made some pants with.  I have tried it many times on scrap (of the same fabric) and the problem always occurs. I will try the stabilizer idea this week  and get back to you. 

      Regarding the dealer, this is a full line dealer carrying the full viking line as well as several other brands. I tried the same buttonhole on a viking machine in the store (another model # 425) with the store salesperson and the same thing happened.

      Hopefully the stabilizer will work.

      Thanks again




  3. mem | | #6

    I wouldnt put up with that!! I bet they didnt tell you before you baought he machine !! Is it still under warrenty??

    1. MaryinColorado | | #7

      I always stabilize buttonholes but what you were told sounds a bit "fishy" to me....maybe you could post your situation to the Viking website, they may take awhile to respond but have been helpful with a concern I had.   They may be interested to know what this dealership's employee  is up to, in fact, the owner  of the dealership might like to be informed.  Especially since it happened with another machine at the dealership!  I don't believe the owner would want to risk losing  thier Viking contract by doing anything unethical.  Sincerely hope this is resolved for you.  I am a satisfied owner of three Viking machines. 

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