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Thread: Serger - your opinions

  1. #1
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    Serger - your opinions

    I'm taking the side seams apart on baby items to embroider on them. Would a serger be a good investment? What kind?

  2. #2
    Power Poster lynnie's Avatar
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    my serger just bit the dust, so i'm looking to see what everyone says about a new serger.
    a serger will be a costly venture to sew up side seams, if you want a serger, get one, but not just to sew up a 6" seam. any machine can do it. a straight seam with a zig zag will cover the raw seams. good luck!
    put off till tomorrow what you can do today, and if you procrastinate long enough, you may never have to do it.

  3. #3
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    I have a Bernina now but started off with a basic Brother that worked perfectly fine. I invested in a serger only because I've made a lot of clothes. As Lynnie said, they can be expensive. They're also generally a pain in the neck to thread.

  4. #4
    Super Member redstilettos's Avatar
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    I have a Janome. It was a lower-end model, but it suits my needs perfectly. Not sure what you are looking for, but all I can say is please make sure it has the color coded thread instructions on the front panel when you open it up. I can't tell you how important proper threading is in those puppies to get them to sew properly

  5. #5
    Senior Member Feather3's Avatar
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    I have a Bernina 800DL I bought new in 2004. Shortly after I bought it I had to take it in for service, as the belt slipped. I haven't had it serviced since. It has 2 oil points & that's it. Not too hard to thread. It's color coded for easy threading. I use it a lot & have sewn several layers of fabric on it at a time. It sits on the end of my sewing cabinet, ready to use. It's great for sewing stretchy fabrics, like knits. I also serger jeans fabric with no hesitation. This machine is a work horse.

    As far as a good investment it all depends on how much & what type of sewing you do. You may be able to get a good used one at a Bernina dealer.

    Look over the stitches on your machine. There may be one that is overlock. If not then do a straight stitch & go back & do a zig zag, like Lynn said.

  6. #6
    Super Member DOTTYMO's Avatar
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    I have a surger but rarely use it. I went on a class with my brother ( long story why he came). He did very well threading and sewing. Myself and the other ladies had a terrible time getting use to the threading and different sewing. On the way home asked why he could use it so easily. He said he just looked at it as a machine and had no problem with sewing because he wasn't thinking about a sewing machine. When I did use it I did make and finish off some beautiful items.i shared the cost of purchase and use with my sister in law. Both our lives have changed and cloth sewing doesn't enter into it.
    Last edited by DOTTYMO; 03-28-2016 at 11:09 PM.
    Finished is better than a UFO

  7. #7
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    I am on my third serger (an upgrade) and still find great uses for it although I "retired" from sewing clothes and now enjoy quilting to the hilt . Now the serger is used for flatlocking large pieces of leftover batting together, sometimes finishing off the quilt top before attaching the binding, piecing backings with large pieces of fabrics and so on. Love it.

  8. #8
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    I have a BERNINA 2000DE which I have had since the 80's sometime. I really don't remember when I got it. I used it for ten years or so to make window fabrications (home based business to put our three sons through college). It has had such hard use that the casing has yellowed. I use it a lot as quilttiger has said. It is color coded but is a bit difficult to thread-so I tie the looper threads and loosen the tension disks and pull them through. Rarely have to start from the spool to thread. I made one quilt with it but did not care for the way the stitches laid in the finished quilt. But, I use it a lot. I like to finish baby blankets with it and use specialty threads in the loopers-nice finish. I take it in for service from time to time. I do not think that the overlock stitches on my sewing machine are as nice as the serger finish. If you buy one, look for uses for it because there are many.

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    Mine makes a good door stop.......

  10. #10
    Senior Member petpainter's Avatar
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    Both of my 30+ year old sergers recently bit the dust, so I had been doing a lot of research on them. I didn't nees to spend an extra $900 to thread it as I have no issues with that, and determined that a machine with the coverstitch seemed more hassle to convert for small seams and change back. I ended up getting a Juki 654 DE in the Pearl line. It's a workhorse and under $400. I got mine at the Sewing Expo, but is available both at stores and online for good prices with no shipping fees. My others were old metal Babylocks, but I Never had a problem with them!

  11. #11
    Senior Member PABerard's Avatar
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    I love mine and use it every time I sew. I started (around 25 years ago) with a basic Singer 4 thread. It was great, stitched great, real work horse. But oh the threading of it! Nothing could bring me to tears like that machine. So when I went to the Sewing and Quilting Expo about 10 years ago, most of the big name companies were there and I got to test drive all their sergers. I loved most of the stitching on all of them, Husqvarna the most, but using the Babylock air threading sold me. I change thread colors now just because I can! Perhaps they have become easier to tame now, but I am still happy with my choice.

    Good luck. I suggest getting one that comes with lessons though ~ Pat

  12. #12
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    The Babylocks are the best with their auto air threading. I have an Evolve wave and the new Ovation. Love them both...Ovation is my favorite....larger harp space....JUST CHECK OUT YOUR DEALERS....go to the Babylpxk aite and watch videos...these machines do so much more than serge over raw edge....Nancy Zieman has feee videos on serging...look for them on Wisconsin Public TV.

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    I bought a new one someone had for sale in are local quilt shop. Took a couple of classes and off I went. Use it mainly for edging dish towels. Check around most people that get them never use them.Should be able to pick a good one for little cost.

  14. #14
    Power Poster ManiacQuilter2's Avatar
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    I have a Baby Lock I bought when I worked part time for House of Fabric. It is a waste of money for me. I hardly use it any more.
    A Good Friend, like an old quilt, is both a Treasure and a Comfort

  15. #15
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    I love my Babylock Ovation. I had just bought a Viking top of the line with self adjusting tension and decided to go to the Babylock event to learn more. I learned so much and I love the wave stitch so much that I bought it. I take classes and have made a night gown, two jackets, table runners, quilts, completely on the serger. My teacher says yes, alot of what we were doing could be done on a machine but since its a serger class we only use the serger. I love all of the great things you can do on them. Eventually I'll get around to putting my viking up on offer up or CL but right now I love the Babylock, the auto thread, the wave stitch, the auto tension, etc. so much to love about this machine.
    Judy

  16. #16
    Super Member Lyncat's Avatar
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    I love my Babylock Enlighten. The jet air threading makes all the difference, and it also automatically adjusts the tension. Two great features!

  17. #17
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    Thanks for all the great ideas and suggestions. Still thinking if I really need it. All of your input has helped.

  18. #18
    Super Member MaggieLou's Avatar
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    If your machine has decorative stitches it may have a similar stitch to a serger. Even my 40 y/o Kenmore has one.
    Margaret

    "If the devil could dance in empty pockets, he'd have a ball in mine."

    Life is a coin. You can spend it any way you wish but you can only spend it once.

  19. #19
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    Baby Lock is a great serger. They are very user friendly, and the newer ones have easy air threading.

  20. #20
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    I've had my BabyLock Imagine serger for years and wouldn't trade it for anything (unless a newer one). It is self-threading so you don't have to worry about getting the thread right for each looper. Absolutely love it. It was well worth the investment. Suggest you find a dealer and inquire about promotions. That's when I got mine for much less than the standard price.

  21. #21
    Super Member DonnaC's Avatar
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    If you're willing to spend a little time learning the threading, and you don't want to spend a lot of $$, the Brother is a good one. I just bought this serger to replace an older model that fell of a table (don't ask!).

    http://www.amazon.com/Brother-1034D-...brother+1034+d

    It's a great entry-level machine for someone who isn't convinced they really need a serger. I'm an experienced serger and garment sewer, so I can make mine do some tricks too. LOL

  22. #22
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    I would never want to sew w/o my serger....clothes anyway. But I don't use it for quilts...made a long cabin once and IMHO I think it was overkill on the seams...I personally don't think it's needed. But if all you want is to resew a small seam area. check your machine feet... I usually don't sew outside the box...don't experiment much. One day however I did just out of curiosity. Low and behold there is a foot made to overcast the seem edges!!! Who knew?!!! Personally I wouldn't use it to do a whole garment but if it's just a mend I think it would suit your needs just fine...especially if you don't garment sew much...sergers can get pricey.

  23. #23
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    I have a Babylock Imagine. It is self-threading. I was lucky to have won it at an embroidery conference. Like some people said threading a serger can be a pain in the neck and that is why you should look into the self-threading ones.
    Carmen E.

  24. #24
    Super Member notmorecraft's Avatar
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    I make a lot of garments, had a baby lock that died (poor thing was 20 years old and used to death) I got the air threading Juki which is great, apart from it doesn't have a free arm, which makes cuffs more challenging, but it does sew beautifully.

  25. #25
    Super Member tlpa's Avatar
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    I have had a Viking 905 for probably about 10 years, which I love. I bought it used locally for $200. The original owner used it heavily to make sports outfits for her family, which was why I received such a good price for it at the time. I have never had a problem with it and used it to help make baptism gowns for my church along the way. Otherwise it has seen light use with me, but I always bring it out when I need to make pillow coverings or curtains and still love to use it. It is fast and has a nice stitch. I've had the more complicated 910 and 936 thinking I may want to upgrade, but sold those off in favor of the 905. You do have to make sure you thread it in the correct order on this machine, which has never been a problem for me with the threading picture inside the machine. I had 2 older model (not Viking) sergers before this one, and they were a nightmare to thread and always jammed up. I think threading has come a long way since then, but you may want to stop at a dealer to try out different sergers to get a feel for them.

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