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Thread: Robotic quilter

  1. #1
    Senior Member lvaughan's Avatar
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    Hello, I would like to know if anyone has a robotic quilter on their longarm, how you like it and would you buy the one you have again. I got an ABM Innova 18" in September and have done very little practice with it since because of a glitch in the movement. My husband finally figured out the problem and got it fixed a couple of days ago and now I can get to practicing. I sometimes think I got in over my head. My husband wants to buy me one of the robots for the machine but they are very expensive, so I'm doing some research hoping not to make a mistake if we do buy one. Thanks!

  2. #2
    Super Member charismah's Avatar
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    I have been trained..and also used the Pilot system that ABM sells for the Innova ( I own an Innova as well) and teh pilot system is relaly user friendly and it does just about anything you want it to do..records your own personal designs...can plan out your whole quilt, add any designs, comes with 1000's of designs ect.
    It is a great system.
    However...I don't like computer quilting unless you are going to just use it for all over designs.
    For me it takes much more work to plan the quilt in the computer system then If I just mastered the technique myself..and had a few flaws here and there. That is just me though. I have to ask myself if I would get 10000$ worth of use out of it?

  3. #3
    Super Member feline fanatic's Avatar
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    I have to agree with Charisma. I also have an Innova but I have not been exposed to the computer guided systems. I would much rather master a technique myself. I am also a new LA user. I just got mine this summer and have only done two quilts so far but am very happy with my results. I think before you make such a huge investment you should practice hand guiding yourself. Cut yourself a little slack and don't be overly critical of your work. In the overall scheme of things if your motifs are not all exactly the same size, shape, only close, well to me that is the artistry of hand guided quilt design. And really no one notices. What draws the eye, is the overall effect the quilting gives the quilt. Keep practicing and you will be amazed at your results. Another thing I like to do is doodle with pencil and paper. Many use a white board with the dry erase markers. Expose yourself to as many hand guided techniques as you can, like stencils, pre-marked designs and pantos. A computer guided system is a huge investment. I would want to master hand guiding before I would even consider it. Why make the investment if it may not even be necessary? It sounds to me like you haven't given yourself a chance to get good with what you have.

  4. #4
    Senior Member lvaughan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by feline fanatic
    I have to agree with Charisma. I also have an Innova but I have not been exposed to the computer guided systems. I would much rather master a technique myself. I am also a new LA user. I just got mine this summer and have only done two quilts so far but am very happy with my results. I think before you make such a huge investment you should practice hand guiding yourself. Cut yourself a little slack and don't be overly critical of your work. In the overall scheme of things if your motifs are not all exactly the same size, shape, only close, well to me that is the artistry of hand guided quilt design. And really no one notices. What draws the eye, is the overall effect the quilting gives the quilt. Keep practicing and you will be amazed at your results. Another thing I like to do is doodle with pencil and paper. Many use a white board with the dry erase markers. Expose yourself to as many hand guided techniques as you can, like stencils, pre-marked designs and pantos. A computer guided system is a huge investment. I would want to master hand guiding before I would even consider it. Why make the investment if it may not even be necessary? It sounds to me like you haven't given yourself a chance to get good with what you have.
    Thank you, I needed that encouragement. I want to justify the purchase of such an expensive machine by doing something I can be proud of. I was taking my quilts to someone three hours away that uses a Gammill with Statler Stitcher, so needless to say the stitching is perfect. I just need to come to understand that what I do will not look like what her robotic machine did. I have been practicing with pantos. I have a quilt top ready for quilting but don't want to get in a hurry and wish I had practiced more. How much practice did you do before loading a quilt?

  5. #5
    Super Member dmyers's Avatar
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    i don't own the innova, but have another longarm machine. i bought the robot that was offered on it and then upgraded to the new robot. my feelings are double edge, the robot works great and very user friendly. my set up is in the end of the kitchen so i can multi task while the machine is running. but i've had it over a year and have yet to do any custom work on it. that is my new year's resolution to practice at least once a weekend to fine tune my skills. i've enrolled in Pam Clarkes class in March so i'm excited to just jump in. i'm motivated after seeing everyone's talent on this board charisma's quilts look stunning!

  6. #6
    Super Member feline fanatic's Avatar
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    Just one one yard sandwich! That was on the rack for about a month. I would go in and doodle with different motifs, both freehand and stencil markings done with chalk. The first quilt I put on I didn't like so I didn't care if I ruined it. That freedom (of not caring) really prompted me to really go wild! I did a stencil in the border and the rest was freehand. I decided my motifs by sketching out the block on paper then just doodled on it until I was happy with a design. Here is a link to pictures I posted of that quilt. http://www.quiltingboard.com/t-77776-1.htm
    No one stencil in that quilt matches any other exactly but the overall appearance is the same. My pebbles are all different sizes and my loopy motifs and sunbursts, no two are exactly alike but the overall appearance to the eye is the same motif.

    That quilt gave me loads of confidence. Here is a link to my second one.
    http://www.quiltingboard.com/t-85150-1.htm
    That one just came off the rack two weeks ago. I do not have another top pieced and ready at this point so haven't decided if I want to put in another practice sandwich or just wait until I finish my current WIP.

    Comparing yourself to your old LA'ers Computer guided design is most definitely makeing you feel inadequate. Love what you do for the originality and artistry YOU have given it, not some computer!

  7. #7
    Senior Member lvaughan's Avatar
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    Oh my goodness! Your quilts are gorgeous, you have real talent. I would be very happy doing what you started out doing after years of practice.

  8. #8
    Super Member feline fanatic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lvaughan
    Oh my goodness! Your quilts are gorgeous, you have real talent. I would be very happy doing what you started out doing after years of practice.
    :oops: :oops: You are too kind! I think the biggest thing is to just relax and have fun. Like you, I was so uptight about the initial investment... Can I quilt well enough for it to be justified? What if I totally suck at this. I just spent a LOT of money yeegads!!! My first initial doodles were very herky jerky my circles were more like squarecles. I was tense holding my shoulders up like a shrug without even realizing it. I made myself pay attention to my body whenever I grabbed those handles. When you are tense your movement is not smooth and it shows in the quilting. You just have to get yourself into the mindset of don't worry if you don't stay on the line, quit caring if one flower petal is bigger then the other flower petals and above all don't expect your quilting to look like the Statler's! Before you know it you will be having so much fun with your Innova and your quilting will show it!

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