Go Back  Quiltingboard Forums > Main
convertible long-arm table? >

convertible long-arm table?

convertible long-arm table?

Old 10-19-2013, 10:44 PM
Junior Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Idaho
Posts: 232
Default convertible long-arm table?

I have a full size long-arm machine with a 12 foot table and would like to find a table that can be converted from a crib size table to a king size table and back again and that is strong enough to handle a long-arm head. Does anyone know of anything like that? I know Grace has a frame called the Majestic that converts crib to king and it can support a Tin Lizzie. Is that a full size long-arm head? Anyone have any experience with a Tin Lizzie?
Cornerstone quilter is offline  
Old 10-20-2013, 02:25 AM
Senior Member
Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: Maryland
Posts: 539

I'm definitely not the LA expert around here, but it's my understanding that the 12 ft table can be converted to a 6 ft and the 10 ft can be converted to a 5 ft. However, changing your table back and forth in sizes probably isn't a good idea. For one thing, it's heavy and for another, if you don't get everything adjusted just right you run the risk of throwing everything, including your LA, out of whack.

I don't understand why you want to convert the table. I have a 10 ft table. I quilt up to that size and down to as little as a wall hanging. You can easily do crib size quilts on a 12 ft table. Just center it and only use that small area of the table. You're fortunate to have room for a 12 ft table. I've heard many ladies here say they'd love to have a LA, but just don't have the room for it.
Nilla is offline  
Old 10-20-2013, 04:48 AM
Power Poster
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Michigan
Posts: 11,276

First of all, yes, a tin lizzie is a long arm. Mine weighs close to 70 pounds. Regarding changing the size of the frame... I agree with Nilla, it's not something that you want to do. It probably is an all day affair. take the machine off, break down the entire frame, take rails off remove bottom support shelf. put it back together, re level it etc.
Why in the world would you want to do that? My frame is the smaller 10' frame and I just did a doll quilt, 18" square.
PaperPrincess is offline  
Old 10-20-2013, 06:29 AM
Super Member
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Clay Springs AZ
Posts: 3,229

Im thinking of shortening my table. It takes up the whole room and I don't use it since I only have a 9 in throat machine on it. Don't plan on making any large quilts just lap size from now on.
But it is a major job to take apart and shorten. Sure can use the room for other things.
Rose Marie is offline  
Old 10-20-2013, 07:03 AM
Power Poster
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Upland CA
Posts: 18,376

I had an Imperal frame, and now have a pearl frame, both can be set up to s short width.
mighty is offline  
Old 10-20-2013, 03:26 PM
Junior Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Idaho
Posts: 232

My reason for wanting to be able to shorten the frame is the same as Rose Marie's. I bought the LA thinking I would do it as a business. I tried for a couple years and now it's not fun anymore-it's a job. The room that it is in is my sewing room. My grandkids all want to learn to sew and make quilts and doll clothes. When we work on a project the LA has to be moved out of the way to have room to get to the sewing machines-2 or 3 kids want to sew at the same time-I have enough sewing machines but not enough room. I figure a frame that is big enough to quilt up to a twin size would be much smaller for the room and would accommodate what we would be making and then when I make an occasional king size for my bed I could convert the frame to fit it, quilt it, and convert back to small size again. Converting would not be a problem. I am fairly mechanical and my husband is a licensed airplane mechanic so between the two of us we could handle the conversion. I just need to find a LA head with a decent sewing area that the Grace frame would be strong enough to support. My LA is an A-1 with an 18" sewing space. I understand that I probably won't find that size in something to go with the Grace frame. I am hoping for more than 8" though. That's all the Bernina quilting system has, but it uses the Grace convertible frame. I visited my local Bernina dealer and spoke to them about converting the frame. It doesn't sound very difficult.
Cornerstone quilter is offline  
Old 10-20-2013, 03:34 PM
Super Member
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Pacific NW
Posts: 9,166

All I'd need to do to convert my frame to a smaller size is to take the rollers off and replace them with shorter rollers.
Peckish is offline  
Old 10-20-2013, 05:37 PM
Power Poster
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Michigan
Posts: 11,276

The info for the Grace Majestic says that it will support machines with up to an 18" throat. Why can't you just use your A1 head on the grace frame? I would call the grace company and just double check.
My 18" tin lizzie is on a grace imperial 10 foot frame. The rails are 5 feet long pieces and are joined in the middle. From reading the info on the Majestic, it looks like that is also the case for that frame. The basic rails are 5 feet long and a 2 foot extension is available. You can have 2 five foot units, which would make the frame 10' or add a 2' extension to the single 5' unit to get a 7 or to two 5 foot sections to make a 12 footer.
I'm pretty sure that all the frames made by Grace have 5 foot rails that you join. Don't think they make a one piece 10 foot unit.
I would not say that it's mechanically challenging to change the size, but it sure it a pain in the butt, as you have to remove the machine and totally disassemble the frame.

One more thing to consider is that you loose about 5 or 6 inches on each side of the frame to accommodate the sled, so a 5' frame would only have a useable area of 48-50". To do a twin, you might want to consider the 7' set up.
PaperPrincess is offline  
Old 10-20-2013, 07:46 PM
Super Member
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Florida
Posts: 3,712

The carriage system has wheels that fit the table. So it's not just weight but the configuration of the wheels. At PIQF we did see a table with 2 ft sections but I'm not sure which one it was.
petthefabric is offline  
Old 10-21-2013, 03:50 AM
Super Member
alleyoop1's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Virginia
Posts: 1,355

Grace makes the Bernina quilt frame and it is convertible from king size down to baby size - I have it. BUT, taking it apart to change the rollers would be a big job. It's not something you can just snap in and out. You would have to practically re-assemble the frame. If size and space is a problem you would be better off with a frame that can handle 1/2 the size of a king - approx. 60", and when you make a big quilt just do it in two parts and then stitch them together.
Tin Lizzie makes machines in various sizes, so you would have to know the model name or number to know how big it is. But from what I am seeing on their web site, all their machines are either mid or long arm and all would work on a quilt frame.
alleyoop1 is offline  
Related Topics
Thread Starter
Last Post
For Vintage & Antique Machine Enthusiasts
03-26-2017 02:12 PM
For Vintage & Antique Machine Enthusiasts
12-22-2014 01:00 PM
For Vintage & Antique Machine Enthusiasts
10-08-2014 02:25 PM
12-02-2009 06:27 AM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

FREE Quilting Newsletter