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Bernina Stitch Regulator - Is it worth the price?

Bernina Stitch Regulator - Is it worth the price?

Old 11-12-2011, 07:46 AM
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I have a Bernina 430 and the BSR. I love the BSR but still need a lot of practice on making my FMQ designs look the way I want them to! I do think the BSR is a valuable learning tool and a "security blanket" so you don't have to worry about stitch length, but I don't know whether I would buy a new machine just to get a stitch regulator. On the other hand....Berninas are fantastic machines and you won't regret buying one.

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Old 11-12-2011, 07:58 AM
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I have a Bernina 1530 that is my travel machine without the BSR and I love FMQing on this machine. My home machine is a Bernina 830 which does have BSR but I don't always use it as I am more comfortable without it!! This is just my opinion!!!
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Old 11-12-2011, 08:03 AM
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I have the Bernina 440 with the BSR. I do almost all of my FMQ on my Viking Mega Quilter. I've learned to regulate my stitches. Yes, it takes practice. Don't be in a hurry and be patient. Breathe in and out!
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Old 11-12-2011, 08:04 AM
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I love mine, and my sewing machine. But it won't magically cure your FMQ problems. As others have noted, there is no substitute for practice.
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Old 11-12-2011, 08:25 AM
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Thanks so much for the feedback. I guess I was expecting the BSR to be a fantastic help with free motion quilting, but the practice and skill seem to be the biggest factor. I'll think about the 440 a little longer and maybe the pricing will drop some more. It still amazes me how much the electronic sewing machines cost!
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Old 11-12-2011, 08:59 AM
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I learned FMQ on my 153, then purchased a 640 and a BSR. I tried using it and found I like the freedom of have control of the quilt. There are two ways to use the BSR and I found that I didn't like either. My advice is to make sandwiches and practice. If you have the ability to slow the motor that will also help you learn better control.
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Old 11-12-2011, 09:16 AM
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I bought a BSR when they came out. Was that about 6 years ago? I didn't use it until this past year. Now I wouldn't want to be without it. There was a learning curve even with the BSR. My earliest FMQ was not good. With practice, I am much, much better; but still not as good as I'd like to be. Practice is the key.
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Old 11-12-2011, 09:34 AM
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I love my BSR and if it hadn't come with the machine (Aurora 440 QE), I would have bought it after trying it out at the dealers. I love, love, love it. And yes, the Bernina was dear ($3,000), and buying additional feet is kindof pricey, but the free interest for a year helped a lot. I regret not buying one of these 5 years ago when my vision started to worsen, but I was afraid I wouldn't be able to sew at all any longer.

The BSR has two modes - one where you press the pedal and go as fast or as slow as you want. The other mode is automatic using no pedal. You just move the fabric and it stitches - move the fabric faster and it stitches faster. I get more even stitches using the pedal, but the 2nd mode is actually pretty wonderful. My suggestion is to take a small quilt sandwich with you and try it out at the Bernina dealer. My stitches are SO much better now.

Now, all that said, if I already had a Bernina and was happy with it, I would have probably stuck with it. My problem was my Brother was horrible for quilting and my vision worse. I really, really like having a computerized sewing machine now. My sister, on the other hand, lives more than 45 miles from the nearest dealer and prefers to fix things herself (saves a lot of money), so she sticks with her mechanical Bernina (she sews, doesn't quilt). So, that's another thing to think of. Some of the maintenance on the computerized Bernina can't be done by the owner - it has to go to someone who has been trained.

Last edited by IAmCatOwned; 11-12-2011 at 09:36 AM.
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Old 11-12-2011, 05:15 PM
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I got a Bernina 820 with the BSR in July. LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the BSR!. My free motion is really improving. I consider it worth it.
Actually the Bernina 820 was the pnly machine I really considered because it had the only 2 things my other 2 older machines did not have- the BSR and a 12" throat.

My advice would be to take a FMQ, get a couple of books on FMQ and practice a few times a week. If you don't feel that your FMQ isn't improving, then the BSR may be your answer. There are lots of talented quilters who do great stuff without the BSR, but I'm not one of them. I need all the help I can get. Good luck
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