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Thread: Brother 1500S and your sewing surfaces

  1. #1
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    Brother 1500S and your sewing surfaces

    Hi everyone.....I have a Brother 1500S and if you do too, you know the bobbin is on the bottom left side. I finally found the perfect table to put my sewing machine on (it matches my other Ethan Allen furniture and it is the right length so I don't block the entrance to my closet). Everything is perfect...but I am wondering........

    Pictures of many sewing rooms show some folks with the machine inset below the surface and others with the machine on top of the table. The Brother 1500S has a really nice extension table that I have used for years and have gotten used to it.

    So, I'm pondering whether I should:

    - just keep raising my sewing chair so it's high enough for my arms to be at the correct angle and use the foot rest. (I'm thinking the hydraulics in that sewing chair are getting old.....sometimes it sinks lower slowly).

    - cut the legs off until it is the correct height for me.

    - take the plunge and inset the machine. If I do the plunge option, how have you all handled the bobbin issue? I'm hesitant to cut into this machine because it can be used in other places in the house for games, puzzles, etc. AND I like to remove the extension table and move the machine back so I can do other sewing things (use light box, hand-bind quilts and lay on the table, etc.).

    So....I know we are all different heights........I'm 5'4".....what is the height of your sewing surface from the floor? (please measure from the floor to the surface where the needle plate is).

    I'm lurking on everyone's wonderful sewing spaces and ideas and just wondering how you all have managed having your Brother 1500S work for you.

    In the meantime, I guess I'd better get something started.....sewing that is.......(definitely not starting something for supper, not starting a cleaning project and not starting to plant flowers)! Maybe those things ......tomorrow! Everyone have a great day sewing something!

  2. #2
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    I'm the same height as you and am trying to work out the correct height and whether to inset my machine so will be watching for any replies, sorry I can't help.

  3. #3
    Super Member rryder's Avatar
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    Nora, the placement of the bobbin is the reason why I built my own setup. By using legs that are adjustable in one inch increments on the table I built for my Pq1500s I was able to keep using the extension table that came with it and have the same effect of having it sunk into a cabinet by placing the two portable tables around it. The Pq1500s fits in the crook of the ell made by the two tables and is adjusted so that ii's extension table sits flush with the table tops on the left and behind it. That way I have a large quilting surface that is just under 29" from the floor.

    By doing it that way I am able to use the extension table it came with which gives me easy access to the bobbin compartment. To sink it into a table would require having one of those acrylic inserts that would have to be moved in order to reach the bobbin compartment.

    On the table height-- an alternative to cutting the table legs would be to build a footrest that would be high enough to put your legs in an ergonomic position.
    Rob
    Last edited by rryder; 06-07-2016 at 04:53 AM. Reason: reread Nora's post
    1955 Singer Featherweight 221/ Late 60's early 70's White Selectronic 970/
    1975 Kenmore 158.1914/ 1981 Brother VX560/ Brother PC420PRW/
    Brother PQ1500s

  4. #4
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    I am slightly shorter than you and I prefer having my sewing machine inset into the table. It is much more comfortable for me and I have a larger flat surface area to work on. I have a Bernina with a front loading bobbin that I can see because the insert is clear acrylic. On the Quilt in a Day website there is an episode of Eleanor Burn's show where her son explains how to make an inset sewing machine table.

  5. #5
    Super Member Yooper32's Avatar
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    I have a folding step stool and that is what I sit on when I use my 1500 Brother to piece or quilt. I can reach the foot pedal easily too until it slides away to far, even though I have a piece of that drawer stuff under it, but I just use both feet and drag it back into the right position. I use a 6ft. folding table. My surround is so slippery that I have no use for the expensive slider I bought. It was more trouble than it was worth.
    Yooper32 aka: Donna B

  6. #6
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    rryder Sorry, I can't visualize your set-up. please post picture. Tinker

  7. #7
    Super Member rryder's Avatar
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    photos

    Hi Tinker,
    Here are photos of my set up:

    The first photo shows the table behind the PQ1500s, it is one of those cheap folding tables from Sam's club and has legs that adjust for 3 different heights. I've got it on the medium adjustment so the table top is about 29" from the floor.

    The second photo shows the way I've got the two cheap folding tables placed with the PQ1500s on it's own smaller table in the ell between the two.

    The third photo shows the legs that I bought from Amazon to build the little table for my PQ1500s. The legs are adjustable for a bunch of different heights, so I could make it just enough lower than the two folding tables to nestle the PQ100s and its extension table into the ell. Sorry it's sideways, don't know why. The legs were sold by Rockler through Amazon and it only took some screws to attach them to a piece of wood that I got from Lowes. I think I paid under $100 for the legs and piece of wood combined.

    It's a very efficient set up for quilting large quilts. My house is 100 years old and the floors are uneven so I had to use some shims (an old cutting board and a scrap piece of wood) under the machine and also some under the tables (so they would sit level on my wonky floors) to get the height exactly right for a smooth transition between machine and tables. Also, I have a radiator against the wall which prevented me from putting the two folding tables completely flush with each other at that end, which is why there is the filler piece of wood there (where the basket is sitting).

    Rob
    Attached Images Attached Images


    1955 Singer Featherweight 221/ Late 60's early 70's White Selectronic 970/
    1975 Kenmore 158.1914/ 1981 Brother VX560/ Brother PC420PRW/
    Brother PQ1500s

  8. #8
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    rryder, Thanks for the pictures!! My sewing table is 5/2ft. I think I can buy 4/2 and put a tv tray at the end where you have the cutting board. I have the table for cutting that will make the L-shape for sewing. Tinker

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