High shank vs low shank

Roberta K

Could you please explain the difference between high shank and low shank? Are there advantages to either one? I one better than another? I own the MC6600 and the MC11000se. Both are 7mm and both are high shank. In the past I have come across sewing machine feet that I am interested in, and at least once I have purchased a foot that did not fit on my machine, because of the above. Is there some type of adapter to make one type fit the other?

Roberta in FL


High shank/low shank applies only to feet that attach with a screw to the presser bar of your machine. Snap-on feet work either way, provided they are the right size for your machine's stitch width. Janome used low shank feet for most of their machines until the Memory Craft 8000. A high shank was required for embroidery. High shank was also needed for machines with built-in dual feed. That's why both of your machines need high shank attachments. It's not related to whether one is better than the other, but rather to what is needed to make the machine work with the features they have designed in. Embroidery and dual feed just needs the presser bar to be higher so the feet (and foot holder for snap-ons) must be high shank. There are some third-party (i.e. not Janome) adapters, but I don't advise using them because they can cause problems with needle threaders. If you are buying add-on feet made by other companies make sure it explicitly says high shank or is returnable.