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Thread: What Sewing Machine gave you problems

  1. #31

    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Hello, I'm been sewing/quilting/crafting/garment construction/wedding gown/ you name it, I sew it person, for 46 years and am also a sewing machine tech. I can tell you to go to any place that repairs sewing machines, even the sew/vacuum places and they will honestly tell you which ones are usually or always in for repairs or updates. Pfaff was sold a few years ago and are no longer the quality that was, also with Bernina, I know, there are lots & lots of Bernina snobs out there, but just because something is the most expensive and 'used' to be the best they also have compromised and have not the quality that they once had. I personally have burned out 4 motors in several of the more notable name brands and I finally, after repairing machines for so long chose a Janome 6600 machine. These machines are built like they used to make 7 - 12 years ago. A real work horse these machines are, and warranted for 25 YEARS! Yep, 25. I don't sell any brand, I just repair. And of all the ones that come in I rarely see Janomes' - usually the yearly clean, oil, & lube, and sometimes an abused one... (dropped) Think about your car, if you never oiled it, it will seize up and not run, same w/a sewing machine. If you can afford it get quality over price. I can't tell you how many times someone has bought a Cosco, Wal-Mart, Target, Jo Ann's ...etc. machine and it has barely lasted 3 months and the repairs I have to make double the cost of the machine, & at that God only know how much use they will get with it.
    Well, that's my 2 cents worth... hope it helps

  2. #32

    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    I got a nice singer quilters edition sewing machine for Sew and Vac and it only cost $99.00 plus around $10.00 or so for shipping. It had a 1/4 inch foot, walking foot and needle threader and some other features. Try that website.

  3. #33
    Super Member JoanneS's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    AZ and CT
    Blog Entries
    My first suggestion is that you shop around and talk to dealers of several different machines. If you haven't bought a new sewing machine in a long time, be prepared for sticker shock! Consider buying a used, but reconditioned machine from a reliable dealer. You might be tempted to buy a machine from the Web, but top-of-the-line machines are sold by dealers, so you're taking a chance when you buy something on the Web. You'll need the dealer more often than you think, too! Keep reading.

    I used to be a Singer sewer. In 1988, my 20+ year old reliable Singer died, and I bought my first computer machine - a Viking. I loved it. 10 years later, I switched to Pfaff, because of Pfaff's built-in even-feed - you really don't need to use a walking foot! If you've ever used a walking foot, you know what I mean. That alone is worth the money you'll spend on Pfaff's computerized machine. Viking still hasn't come up with something similar even though they bought Pfaff.

    Don't buy more than you need. For example, if you're not into embroidery, don't buy an embroidery machine. I recently bought an embroidery machine, because I can no longer hand quilt, and there are a lot of great outline quilt designs available. I've had a hard time with free-motion quilting, though I haven't completely given up on it. There's a neat (and expensive) attachment that works with both Pfaff and Viking machines that takes the wrestling with the quilt out of free-motion. I can't remember what it's called, but I tried it out at a week-long Sit and Sew sponsored by my dealer. It's on my Wish List!

    It really makes sense to find a good dealer. I've been VERY lucky to find an excellent dealer in Tucson. They've been in business a long time. They handle both Pfaff and Viking, and they're really into customer service. They give free classes when you buy a machine from them - as do most good dealers. This is very important, because the new machines are pretty complicated. The handbooks are good, but they're not a substitute for classes or a dealer who is just a phone call away. They also have Pfaff and Viking Club classes. Good dealers do this, and you can learn at lot from the clubs. I have a friend who has a similar good dealer in Santa Rosa, CA, so I know mine is not the only good one!

    Another thing, good dealers invite well-known teachers to give 2 or 3 day or week-long classes (like the one I mentioned above)- another great way to expand your working knowledge of sewing. Good dealers let you trade up: My dealer gives a full-value trade in if you decide to trade up within 12 months. Hard to beat that! Finally, because they take trade-ins, they usually have older machines that they have completely serviced and reconditioned and sometimes even upgraded (which they can do because they're computerized), and they re-sell them at great prices. That's how I bought my embroidery machine. And even though the machine is several years old, I still got the free lessons!

    I think you'll find that Bernina owners are just as dedicated to their machines as I am to Pfaff. I hope you hear from them, too.

    Good Luck!


  4. #34
    Senior Member cassiemae's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Billings Mt


    This is your quilting friend Eunice I bought a Pfaff several years ago and I really like it and it has a built in walking foot it is called an integrated duel feed. I personally would not have anything except a Pfaff they are wonderful machines., I did not get the most expensive one either.

    Good luck and let me know how you turned out and what one you end up with.

    eunice :lol:

  5. #35
    Community Manager PatriceJ's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Blog Entries
    i'm afraid i must disagree wholeheartedly, dear QuiltNut.

    What seems like skimping to some constitutes a major investment (that takes months to save for) to others. It's absolutely possible to get a nice machine that works well and has the most important features for under $300. In fact, very good, but basic, machines can be had for under $200 - even under $100 if you don't insist on a long list of special features. The only thing you can't get for less than a mortgage is a machine with a big enough throat for comfortable freemotion machine quilting.

    I was so pleased by my Simplicity Quilter's Classic I bought a second one when they went on sale. I've had them for years and have had only one problem with each. Because they aren't completely computerized, I was able to fix them myself. Not having to drive 50 miles to spend $100 in a repair shop was just fine with me. I just gave the "spare" to a friend whose [allegedly superior brand] machine was giving her fits. she's brand new to sewing. I also have a Singer Ingenuity that i consider to have been a very good value for its price. It lacks a few of the features I value most in my SQC, but it has a wider selection of deco stitches, so it all balances out.

    The only machine I've ever bought that I absolutely hate is a White. It gathers dust. I dislike it so thoroughly I hesitate to even donate it to a charity shop. (However, for all I know it's just the one unlucky lemon out of thousands of wonderful Whites that roll off the assembly line. I draw no conclusions about the whole brand because of it.)

    If you have thousands to spend on a machine then, by all means, go for the fanciest shmanciest thing you can find. For myself, while I save up for the one that makes me drool, I have no regrets about buying the ones I've had over the years.

  6. #36

    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    :D :D

    Dear Patrice, I agree with you completeLY...I bought a cheap little thread snipper..one of those .99 bargain bin items. Loved it, but didn't think it would last, so I bought a more expensive one....that expensive one is still in its package 3 years later.

    I didn't want to give the impression I am a snob, or well-to-do..I have to cut corners every way I can. I am just a glorified switchboard operator.
    I have just had generally bad luck in buying inexpensive. I don't make enough money to gamble on the $199 item; every time I do, I end up in a mess. So it's been my experience that..IN THE LONG RUN, buying expensive ends up cheaper. I do without a lot of things, so I can afford the best tool I can manage to buy. It seems to be best for me.

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