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Thread: will be purchasing a long arm in 2013--any suggestions welcome!

  1. #11
    Super Member Prism99's Avatar
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    I recently purchased a used Voyager 17 and Hinterburg frame and ***love*** it! It was an affordable setup for me and is a nice entry level setup.

    In your situation, however, I would probably be looking at an Innova, which is considerably more expensive but also has a lot of very nice features. A lot depends on what dealers are in your area, as it helps a lot getting started to have a supportive dealer nearby.

    Plan to attend a large quilt show and try out the longarm setups there. You might be surprised at how different the various major setups can "feel" to you. I tried out several, and the Innova was my favorite.

    It would be a good idea to join the homequiltingsystems group on groups.yahoo.com for additional information from users of the machine/frame setups you are considering. This is a very large, active group of quilters using many different kinds of setups from the ultra-inexpensive to the ultra-high level.

    Some time ago I read an article (that has since been removed from the internet) that, for most home quilters, 24" is usually the maximum comfort level for arm reach. The longer arm setups (26", 28") are more appropriate for professionals. I did find this article online, although it doesn't offer a lot of specific information or comparison info:
    http://www.quiltsonthecorner.com/inc/sdetail/1349
    Last edited by Prism99; 12-31-2012 at 01:50 PM.

  2. #12
    Senior Member cmw0829's Avatar
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    Hi, sorry about your mother's passing. But your DH is right.

    Having tried them all at several quilt shows, I'd suggest you seriously consider the Innova.

    You might want to subscribe to Yahoo groups for the brands in which you're interested and check out the message history.

    Good luck.

  3. #13
    Super Member Kooklabell's Avatar
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    I'm so sorry to hear of your loss. I've had a couple of unexpected losses over the years and they certainly sent me spinning for a long time.

    I bought a longarm - Baby Lock on a Grace frame. I wish I had: 1. classes on its use nearby. 2. I wish it was an easier frame to set up. 3. Getting the tension right on this machine is a real challenge. You might think I didn't shop around and try things out, but I did. I'm still amazed that I think there is a better set up out there.
    I hear many on this site talk positively about the Innova. But again, there isn't anyone around my area that sells these.

    So, bottom line, take your time choosing just the right machine and frame for your needs. Local classes/assistance (face/face) would be wonderful.

    Hope this helps a bit
    Kookie (Patti)

    Life is Good

    http://www.catskillcrafts.com

  4. #14
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    Hi, so sorry for your loss.

    I had a Nolting Hobby Quilter on an eight foot frame but didn't get on with it very well, the machine did not have a stitch regulator so it went too fast for me.

    I sold that machine and bought an APQS Lenni with stitch regulator on a 10 foot frame and it is so much lighter than the Nolting, I love it. The only extra thing I bought was hydraulics so that I can raise and lower the table to the height I want it at.

    Do search around till you find something that you can use with ease.

    Jenny

  5. #15
    Super Member wolph33's Avatar
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    [QUOTE=cmw0829;5752819]Hi, sorry about your mother's passing. But your DH is right.

    Having tried them all at several quilt shows, I'd suggest you seriously consider the Innova.

    You might want to subscribe to Yahoo groups for the brands in which you're interested and check out the message history.

    Good luck.[/QUOTE
    Innova-well built-made to last-we tested them all and kept going back to the Innova-best decision we ever made
    http://www.etsy.com/shop/Upnorthcrafter

  6. #16
    Super Member
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    So sorry for your loss. If you are getting proficient on the machine you have been using, that's where I would start looking. I know your Mom will be helping you every step of the way and smiling. Going to a show and trying the different machines is a good idea. Good luck, and there is a lot of discussion on here about the different machines.
    Sue

  7. #17
    Power Poster mighty's Avatar
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    There are so many great machines out there. I think you should really check out as many as you can.
    I have a Viking 18x8 on a 10 ft. frame with a qbot robot. I love my set up. Good luck with what ever machine you get!!! It will bring you hours and hours of joy!!!!!

  8. #18
    Power Poster dunster's Avatar
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    Sorry for your loss. It is hard losing a parent, no matter your age. I have Innova and love it. Support is 24/7 by phone, and it is by excellent technicians who enjoy providing support and are actually upset if you don't call when you have a problem. I highly recommend it. The computerized quilting (AutoPilot or Navigator) can be added at any time, as can other options, so you don't have to buy every option at once. However, other people have their favorites, and so it is best to go to a big quilt show where there are lots of vendors. Find the brand that is right for you.

  9. #19
    Senior Member
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    Sorry to hear of your loss--but you are smart to use the money to buy something special--that every time you use it, it will remind you of your mother. I have a APQS Freedom and love it. I have only had it one year but have quilt 82 quilts on it already and have not had a single problem. It is gold in my eyes as I previously had a different brand and had many, mnay problems with it while I quilted only 60 quilts on it before getting rid of it. I did go to a big show and try out many of the brands. I do feel there are many good brands out there, but for me--I felt the APQS just had the most comfortable "feel" for me. My Dealer is about 3 1/2 hrs away but it really doesn't matter. I didn't need classes as I was already an experienced quilter so if I do have a question, I call her. I would highly recommend that you get a stitch regulator on whatever you buy. I think it really helped me tremendously with my learning curve when I furst bought a long arm machine. I didn't ever think I would get a long arm machine, either, but I got my first one, also, when I came in to a little bit of money so I could make a down payment and didn't have to finance the whole thing. Good luck with your search and when you buy one someday, let us know all about it! It is very exciting to get a long arm.

  10. #20
    Member Chiclet's Avatar
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    I am so very sorry about your loss. I think it sounds like your mom would approve of your decision to make such a special and personal purchase with the gift she left you.

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