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Thread: Best Beginner electronic machine Low Budget

  1. #1
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    Best Beginner electronic machine Low Budget

    OK, eyes are glazed over, but I am looking at electronic machines. Very low budget as I really don't sew much but would like something with decorative stitches, fairly large harp to do my own quilting, easy to thread, easy for a beginner to use, etc. What are some of the machines you like and why. Looking at a $200 budget so really low budget.

  2. #2
    Power Poster lynnie's Avatar
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    Got a singer Quilter for about 299.00 it has fancy stitches self threader. Try walmart for sales or joanns online also

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    wanting large harp narrows down your selections considerably

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    Super Member Candace's Avatar
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    Go to your nearest dealer and look at used machines. Stay away from big box stores. Used machines will give you more options.

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    big Box stores don't give service. And service is important

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    Power Poster QuiltE's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Holice View Post
    wanting large harp narrows down your selections considerably
    and I don;t think the large harps would come in the price range requested!!!


    My suggestion would be to go to a reputable dealer who also provides service and give them your wish list!
    Test drive the machines.
    When you think you know what you want ... ask what the next step above would be?
    And consider that seriously, as often times we underbuy and then later wish we had this or that ... and for a few dollars extra at the time, it might be worth the investment for long time enjoyment!
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Sew many ideas ... just sew little time!!
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  7. #7
    Super Member DogHouseMom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by QuiltE View Post
    and I don;t think the large harps would come in the price range requested!!!


    My suggestion would be to go to a reputable dealer who also provides service and give them your wish list!
    Test drive the machines.
    When you think you know what you want ... ask what the next step above would be?
    And consider that seriously, as often times we underbuy and then later wish we had this or that ... and for a few dollars extra at the time, it might be worth the investment for long time enjoyment!
    Ditto that ... don't forget to ask the dealer about used machines. Dealers that take in trade-in's will service and re-sell the machine, usually with a limited warranty. You can get a lot more machine for the money.
    May your stitches always be straight, your seams always lie flat, and your grain never be biased against you.

    Sue

  8. #8
    Super Member Wanabee Quiltin's Avatar
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    I would go to a dealer and ask for used machines. The long harp will give you some problems for sure. But I know that the dealers sell good used machines. If it were me, I would buy a vintage machine. I am using a vintage Pfaff in my camper and absolutely love it. The vintage machines don't do the decorative stitches, but boy. do they sew good.

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    Thank you for the replies. I already have a vintage machine. Actually 2, one about 35 Y/O and the other 40. Was thinking an electronic would give me the advantage of decorative stitches, and easier to sew. Not near any dealers so was thinking it would need to be an online purchase or big box. And yes, I realize you don't get champagne on a beer budget. Was hoping for more critiques on the lower end machines. Lynnie, tell me more about your Quilter please.

  10. #10
    Senior Member krysti's Avatar
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    I have a Brother SQ 9050, I think right around $199 from Walmart.When I first started quilting, I couldn't afford much at all; plus I wanted to make sure I was going to actually use it before even considering moving up in machines. This little Brother is great! It is very user friendly, has drop in bobbin, Auto threader, side thread cutter, has somewhere around 100 stitches, including a couple of fonts. It has 3 speeds, drop feed dogs button, needle-down button. It also comes with quilting accessories, such as a small extension table, and the most popular quilting feet. The down side is it does have a rather small throat space. I did quilt my very first quilt on it, somewhere around lap sized. It was a little difficult to maneuver, but I was thinking maybe I needed some of those clips to roll it up tighter and it might not be so bad. In my opinion, the throat size is the ONLY downside--it's a great little machine with the features for the price.
    ​Krysti

  11. #11
    Member Cheryls Fabric Garden's Avatar
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    I would recommend a Bernina because they all have metal parts and no plastic parts. However, their lowest price will probably not fit in your budget. Whatever machine you buy, may sure they offer you classes. (They should be free.)
    It is a lot better than trying to figure out things by yourself. Many times the instructors will also have tips that they have learned along the way. Sometimes price is not always the best bargain when you are not happy with a machine.
    Include lots of color in your life.

  12. #12
    Junior Member frannella's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tonvic View Post
    OK, eyes are glazed over, but I am looking at electronic machines. Very low budget as I really don't sew much but would like something with decorative stitches, fairly large harp to do my own quilting, easy to thread, easy for a beginner to use, etc. What are some of the machines you like and why. Looking at a $200 budget so really low budget.
    In defense of big box stores, I bought an electronic Brother at Costco for < $150 and it came with a ton of specialty feet, including all the ones needed for quilting. Beyond price, the advantage of buying from a big box store like Costco (or even HSN) is that they typically bundle a lot of assessories you might otherwise have to buy separately. It's so low mainenance you can't oil it even if you wanted to try. Sews very smoothly, great stitch selection, easy electronics, and it weighs about 3 pounds so that it's very portable (my cat weighs more). Oherwise, ditto what others here have said--go to a dealer and ask them to keep you and your specifications in mind (used machines offer the best value), and abandon the idea of a large harp--it is cancelled out by budget constraints.
    I didn't make this beautiful GFG quilt but it's on my wish list to do

  13. #13
    Super Member Dolphyngyrl's Avatar
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    You are not really going to get a large harp for 200, but you can get a nice low end brother with nice decorative stitches. I like my SQ-9050 a lot from Walmart. It runs 200 but it doesn't have a big harp but has nice features for quilting. There are some nice straight stitch machines with decent harp size for about500

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    I hated everything about sewing, untill I spent $130 on my Brother ES2000 4 years ago at Costco. It has 77 stitches, needle threader, and is no maintenance, easy to use, and soooo much easier to use than my 15 year old Kenmore. That was when I found out I love quilting. I still have and use it, with no problems, but I picked up a 9" straight stitch that I use most of the time now, and just use the other one for decorative stitches. But my little ES2000 is only a 5.5" harp.

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    I HAD to have a machine with fancy stitches - and I use about ten of them - at the most!

  16. #16
    Super Member Teacup's Avatar
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    Brother is the way to go if that's your budget and you already have a vintage machine. But you won't get the large harp in that price range. If you have a larger harp on your older machines, where you could do your quilting, do you need it on this one? Do a search on this board and online for Brother CS6000i and read the ratings. I've been surprised by how well mine does for piecing and overall basic sewing. Check out ratings on the Brother SQ9050 as well.

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