All the excitement of last week’s release of Hoop Guard spurred quite a few questions about using Hoop Guard on a multi-needle machine. The fact is, you don’t need Hoop Guard for a multi-needle machine. Multi-needle machines have been designed for tubular embroidery, not flat fabric. The actual design of the machine allows a finished piece of clothing (shirt, pant leg, sleeve, etc) to slide around the machine throat and into the hoop.
Here’s a thorough explanation. The hoop’s inner ring attaches to the machine at two points and slips inside the outer ring. Because the inner ring attaches to the machine from the top of the hoop, the excess fabric falls over the outer ring, under the attachment points. This design allows for true tubular embroidery. The hooping process for a multi-needle machine is as follows: place the outer ring on a flat surface, center the stabilizer and fabric over the outer ring. Insert the inner ring.
Lift the hoop by the attachments and slip it onto the machine, threading the machine’s throat through the body of the garment. The bulk of the t-shirt hangs below the attachment points and surrounds the throat. Hence, there’s no need for Hoop Guard.
Not only is there no need, Hoop Guard wouldn’t function probably on a multi-needle machine. Some of the needles (or head) cross the perimeter of the hoop during stitching and would knock into Hoop Guard, unlike the needle on a single-needle machine. The needle never crosses the perimeter of the hoop during stitching. It gets close to it, but not across.
Hoop Guard was designed for single-needle machines. The struggle to keep parts of a garment OUT of the sewing field on single needle machines is many embroiderers’ biggest challenge and that’s what Hoop Guard does. Hope this clarifies the concept of Hoop Guard.