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Thread: Sewing Machine Advice

  1. #1
    Super Member Alu_Rathbone's Avatar
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    Sewing Machine Advice

    I'm not sure if I'm posting this in the right place, but I'm in a bit of a pickle.

    About five years ago I was gifted a sewing machine by a wonderful woman on this website. I know I can get the same one on Amazon, as I have found it on there. It's a Brother CSi 6000. It worked wonderfully, until it was thrown into the hallway by my two dogs. (They ran into the small table it was sitting on). Unfortunately, the damage it sustained is too much for me to afford right at this moment.

    I'm looking for a decent machine but at a price that a college student can afford. The one I had before is in the right price range, but I want to know if there is anything that is either better or more affordable (under $150, preferably under $125). I don't buy off brands (I need it to last) and Singer is not entirely my favorite (I had a bad experience with one in a class I was in). I did see a Janome for under a hundred. I like to do my research before I buy, but I'm looking for advice from some who are experienced.

    Any ideas?
    "That quilt top has a very cat shaped bump in it." Alu had once more been thwarted by Wrigley, who was happily sleeping between the top and batting. "All that basting for nothing."

  2. #2
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    I have 3 Janomes (one is a 90's Kenmore, but was made by Janome) and they are all great machines. I wouldn't hesitate to buy a Janome new or used, as long as you know it's not been abused.

    If you're on a tight budget, don't forget about vintage machines. A lot of those are all steel and are very easy to maintain on your own, and would probably hurt the dogs and the hallway more than the dogs and hallway could ever hurt one of those steel beasties! I don't like modern Singers but I have few from the 50's and earlier and they are really and truly built like tanks (pretty much literally). Kenmore is another brand I really trust - Kenmore sewing machines were made by a variety of manufacturers but so far every Kenmore I've had has been rock-solid (I currently own 3, by 3 different makers - one from the 40's, one from the 50's, and one from the 90's; the one from the 50's is my favorite - it's a real beast, talk about a tank...). It's too bad Sears/Kenmore don't still make sewing machines!

  3. #3
    Super Member Alu_Rathbone's Avatar
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    I love the old Singers! A friend of mines grandmother has one that she brought with her from Italy and still uses it on a regular basis. I'll look around for some vintage ones. Thank you!
    "That quilt top has a very cat shaped bump in it." Alu had once more been thwarted by Wrigley, who was happily sleeping between the top and batting. "All that basting for nothing."

  4. #4
    yel
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    look around for an old one it will outlast most you can buy new ...are you close i can gift you another one

  5. #5
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    Check estate sales and garage sales. Don't forget the thrift stores.!

  6. #6
    Super Member Alu_Rathbone's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by yel View Post
    look around for an old one it will outlast most you can buy new ...are you close i can gift you another one
    I'm not entirely sure, I'm in the Chicago area. I am looking around to see if I can find something old. As long as I can figure out how to use it, we are in business! I loved my machine, it never gave me a hassle. That is very generous of you to offer. Thank you.
    "That quilt top has a very cat shaped bump in it." Alu had once more been thwarted by Wrigley, who was happily sleeping between the top and batting. "All that basting for nothing."

  7. #7
    Power Poster miriam's Avatar
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    try an old machine in a table - make it hard for the dogs to flip it
    Never let a sewing machine know you are in a hurry.

  8. #8
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    If you live in an area with a quality dealership, one interested in meeting customer needs with an in-house repair guy, you may be able to get a used machine that has been taken in while previous owner upgraded or floor demonstration model that counts as used. If it's straight sewing with some decorative stitches, vintage machine with cams may be the way to go but they are heavy, heavy, heavy. Agree with Sewnoma: if one of those hits the deck/dog, more damage done to animal!!!

  9. #9
    Super Member Alu_Rathbone's Avatar
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    I don't have room for a in table model. It would be awesome if I did though, but I'm not that lucky. Possibly in a few years. I'll check the Singer store near me, they do repairs on all models, and I believe sell some used ones.
    "That quilt top has a very cat shaped bump in it." Alu had once more been thwarted by Wrigley, who was happily sleeping between the top and batting. "All that basting for nothing."

  10. #10
    Super Member lovingmama's Avatar
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    Own a janome gold jem for many years and never had an issue. If possible I wouldn't buy the mini, to small.
    Try to look in at the Jems. Prices aren't much higher, but you'll be better of.
    ♥♥♥ Loving Mama ♥♥♥

    If life gives you scraps, make an angel quilt out of it!

  11. #11
    Super Member sparkys_mom's Avatar
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    I still love my Brother CSi 6000. I also have a bigger (and much more expensive) Janome 7700, but I love the Brother for workshops, etc. It's just a nice little machine and I see people praise it here and elsewhere over and over. I don't have any experience with the small Janomes. I do see people praise them, too. However, based on my experience with the 7700, I would go with the Brother.
    Pat

  12. #12
    Super Member purplefiend's Avatar
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    A Singer 401 would be a lovely machine, it doesn't need to be in a cabinet. You can just have it sit on your table. The 401 was made when Singer still made good machines.

  13. #13
    Super Member Alu_Rathbone's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sparkys_mom View Post
    I still love my Brother CSi 6000. I also have a bigger (and much more expensive) Janome 7700, but I love the Brother for workshops, etc. It's just a nice little machine and I see people praise it here and elsewhere over and over. I don't have any experience with the small Janomes. I do see people praise them, too. However, based on my experience with the 7700, I would go with the Brother.
    I LOVE my CSi 6000... I've used it the entire time I've been in school. The last thing I made with it was an apron for an art class. After I wash the apron, I'll post a photo of it. I was getting the hard case for the machine so I could put it away and that's why the dogs ran into the table. I really just want another one of this because it was so easy to use, but at the same time, I'd like to look at other machines. Perhaps I'll ask for another Brother for my birthday and get a used machine as backup.
    "That quilt top has a very cat shaped bump in it." Alu had once more been thwarted by Wrigley, who was happily sleeping between the top and batting. "All that basting for nothing."

  14. #14
    Member nme1974's Avatar
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    WalMart and Amazon both carry the CS6000i for $143.99, which seems to be very close to your budget. WalMart would be free shipping to the store, you would have to have Prime membership with Amazon to get free shipping from them.
    Nanette
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  15. #15
    Super Member Alu_Rathbone's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nme1974 View Post
    WalMart and Amazon both carry the CS6000i for $143.99, which seems to be very close to your budget. WalMart would be free shipping to the store, you would have to have Prime membership with Amazon to get free shipping from them.
    I have prime, so ordering from Amazon is no issue. I'm not the biggest fan of WalMarts shipping, but that's me.
    "That quilt top has a very cat shaped bump in it." Alu had once more been thwarted by Wrigley, who was happily sleeping between the top and batting. "All that basting for nothing."

  16. #16
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    I have a Janome and love it. An older Singer also would be fine.

  17. #17
    Super Member madamekelly's Avatar
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    Walmart has at least two models of "Brother brand machines for under $175. Brother is a durable low maintenance machine and easy to learn on.
    If you always do, what you have always done, The results never change. Change is the wings you give yourself.

  18. #18
    Super Member chris_quilts's Avatar
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    I also suggest a vintage machine. Hard to break them. They usually are super easy to thread and maintain and fit the price range you are looking at for buying. Craigslist is another option for machines.
    I meant to behave......but there were too many other options

  19. #19
    Super Member katesnanna's Avatar
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    I have 5 Janome machines and have been happy with each one of them. I would recommend them with a clear conscience.

  20. #20
    Super Member 1screech's Avatar
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    Find an older singer or kenmore and it will never wear out. The older machines were all metal and there is not a lot you can do to destroy them. The stitching is beautiful and you wont be sorry. They are heavier but worth it especially if you don't haul them around. Where are you located? I do have a couple of older ones but if you are across the country, shipping would be expensive.

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