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Thread: Advice, reviews, help! Long arm/mid arm

  1. #1
    Member LollipopCorner's Avatar
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    Advice, reviews, help! Long arm/mid arm

    I've been looking at different long and mid arm machines and set ups. I really had my heart set on a Crown Jewel but the price is just a tad out of budget (to be able to get the other items I need too). I'd been looking at the HQ Avante online and found out it is the same machine and I found it for less. Then the bomb was dropped last night. Due to circumstances out of our control, my budget has possibly dropped even more. Suprisingly, I'm not devestated, just disappointed. So I need some advice. I've seen the Tin Lizzie in my budget, online but I don't know a thing about them. I've seen good and bad reviews. I looked several years ago at the Brother PQ1500S (straight stitch machine) on a Grace frame and have been thinking about it. If I got it, I would have a good bit of room in my budget for the other things but I've seen good and bad reviews on it. And there's the new Juki, I could get for $7500 but if I understand correctly you can only do free handed quilting on it and I don't know that I'm ready for that.

    Just FYI, I've always been a Brother and Babylock kinda gal. I've had a couple of Singers but my BLs and Brothers have been my faves. I have no experience with any other machines so feel free to advise on any I'm not familiar with. Oh, and please share if you know of any place that sells used machines.
    Thanks and God Bless!
    Paula

  2. #2
    Super Member Prism99's Avatar
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    I purchased a used Voyager 17 on a Hinterberg stretch frame, and am extremely pleased. The Voyager is a stretched industrial Singer machine (vintage, not plastic). This is a heavy machine, but the Hinterberg frame handles the weight very well. (Other frames would probably not be as good.) This particular setup with stitch regulator can be purchased directly from Hinterberg for about $4,000:
    http://www.hinterberg.com/prod-Voyag...ckage-487.aspx

    However, I have done Google searches and found frame and Voyager (some without stitch regulator) for less than that. (The Voyager is no longer being made, so all Voyagers are refurbished.)

    In my opinion, this is a great start setup. The frame is sturdy and easy to set up (especially compared to other frames), and the bearings on the carriage are excellent. This frame handles the weight of the Voyager very well, so it would handle other machines well also. I like the Voyager a lot because I can pretty much do all of the maintenance and adjusting on it myself (so far, anyway). The manual that comes with it gives detailed information on how to re-time the machine, for example. I ***love*** the 17" of harp size with this machine.

    Someone on the QB was abled to buy a used Voyager/Hinterberg setup (with stitch regulator) for under $2,500. It was listed on one of the used machine websites. Here's one website:
    http://www.longarmuniversity.com/machines_for_sale.htm
    but I think she found hers on the other one.

  3. #3
    Super Member soccertxi's Avatar
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    You can try www.houseofhanson.com also. Look down the right hand column for Previously owned machines. APQS has a board in their forums where people post machines for sale. Good luck!
    Beth in AZ
    www.bzyqltr.blogspot.com
    Innova 22' with Lightning Stitch and Pantovision
    Keep away from people who belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that, but the really great make you feel that you too can become great. Mark Twain

  4. #4
    Super Member alleyoop1's Avatar
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    Are you only looking for a computerized long arm machine? That is expensive. I use a normal size machine on a 12' quilt frame. My quilting area is limited to approx. 5" but that's okay. I recently ordered 'grooved boards' and a stylus to try quilting with them to guide me so I can do more than meander. There are many ways to accomplish what you want. Try different machines wherever you can find one to try.
    Proud grandma of Coast Guard grandson and Air Force granddaughter!

  5. #5
    yel
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    i have an innova and just love it ....and once you start freehanding ..patterns will bore you ....sometimes i mark them the old fashion way and follow the lines but the creative side of me just loves to go crazy

  6. #6
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    I have a second hand APQS Lenni on a 10' frame/table. Here in the UK there are not many longarms available to go and try. I went to a friends house and tried her APQS Milli and couldn't take my hands off of her, it was great. Whilst visiting my friend, Ani Catt an email came through from APQS to say they had some second hand machines for sale. Ani emailed to find out if the would sell to the UK. The answer came back that yes they would so I put my deposit down there and then.

    My Lenni is lovely she justs glides along, I did get the Bliss table to make it easier to glide. I have not looked back since then.

    So do have a look on the APQS website for their second user machines, you won't be sorry.

    Jenny

  7. #7
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    HQ has a forum too, and I have seen listings for used as well. Also some dealers that take in trades for upgrades are on the forum, and so you could contact them. I bought my HQ 16 pro-stitcher through my lgs and it was a display model with a great pro table set up ( don't remember what it is called )

  8. #8
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    The new Juki that will be coming out (Virtuoso) has the option of a computer. Maybe you could get it for free motion at 7500$ now, then add the computer later when you can afford it?

    I have the Pfaff PowerQuilter P3, which is made by Tin Lizzie. I'm very happy, but mostly because of my dealer, who gives me private lessons and answers my many, many questions. I looked at the Crown Jewel. It was less expensive than the HQ Avante in my area. It was a really nice machine and honestly, if that dealer would have offered the same support as the Pfaff dealer, I probably would have chosen it instead.

    Good luck! I hope you find the right machine for you.

  9. #9
    Super Member PaperPrincess's Avatar
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    I have a Viking branded Tin Lizzie. I really like the machine. It will sew with any thread and the tension is very easy to set. The one thing that I wish I would have known is that the frame is almost as important as the machine. If the machine doesn't move smoothly on the carriage and rails, you can have the best machine in the world and it won't do a good job for you!
    "I do not understand how anyone can live without one small place of enchantment to turn to."
    Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings

  10. #10
    Super Member newbee3's Avatar
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    I feel extremely lucky got a nustyle longarm 12ft table they set it up and delivered also got a 1 year guarntee and a free quilting lesson for under $2000.

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