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Thread: I have a stupid question

  1. #1
    Super Member Weezy Rider's Avatar
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    I have a stupid question

    I use a sewing machine cabinet. Very handy and I like it - but why oh why do the makers of lighting think that everyone has room on the LEFT side of the machine? No matter what table you use - that's were the fabric goes! With a cabinet, there is really no place to the right to clip anything unless you have cabinets at the side. We can't all have the ideal sewing studio with great lighting. I'll bet a quite a few are making do. I see a lot use the kitchen or dining room table.
    This could be a relatively inexpensive update and boon for anyone if the designers would get their acts together.

    I finally found the Ecolux which is I hope the first of a sane solution. I've tried a bendable, but I thought it had a lot of glare. This glare might not be apparent depending on the shape of your machine and where you can attach the light. Plus the bendy part gets weak. Mine kind of unbent while using the embroidery module. I can think of a couple of other ways to deal with lighting, and I'll bet you can, too.

    BTW - the left side is fine for most garments and heirloom, but for quilters????

  2. #2
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    I agree we collect and use vintage machines. Seems like the lighting situation hasn't improved much, the exception being LED lighting in some new machines. I'm lucky we have a lot of overhead lighting with natural light fluorescent in my studio for the longarm. But I do a lot of piecing on the vintage machines in the living room at night.
    Cheryl Robinson
    http://www.silverneedlestitching.com
    APQS Millenium Longarm with Intelliquilter

  3. #3
    Super Member Gramie bj's Avatar
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    I must agree! I use a lot of black in my quilts and would love a light that would shine in front of the needle.
    It is really hard to see the guide lines and sometimes even the thread. Even harder seeing black thread on black fabric when using a seam ripper! LOL Thats when the lighted magnifing glass I uses for beading comes out!

  4. #4
    Super Member Pickles's Avatar
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    My main complant is the lighting also plus the thoat room , you would think that when they claim it's a
    quilting machine that they would know there's not anywhere near the thoat room are lighting for a quilt to be made!!!
    May you always have Love to Share , Health to Spare, and Friends that Care!

  5. #5
    Super Member justflyingin's Avatar
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    That's why Janome put so much light built in the 7700.

  6. #6
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    yes my horizon (7700) has a lots of light. i wish my other machines did too.

  7. #7
    Senior Member Tashana's Avatar
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    I have a dinky one bulb on my singer and I can see nothing with it. Add to that that I wear glasses it is always a challenge. I have one of those tall floor directional lamps with three lights and I point them where I need them. It is either that on mystery seams since I cannot tell where the heck I am sewing. My new bailey came with 14 LEDs at least now I will see where I am quilting!

  8. #8
    Senior Member Sally J's Avatar
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    To Weezy Rider.. My bendy part of the light lost its bend also so I put a rubber band around it the in the curve I wanted and works great. Just an idea

  9. #9
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    First of all, the only stupid question is the one that isn't asked! I've always maintained that people who do not know anything about sewing design sewing machines and sewing machine cabinets, and this is doubly true when it comes to home quilting machines and cabinets. They should know by now that we need lots of light and lots of room and a long harp space. And most of us would be happy if these companies would provide all of this at a price that is reasonable. A dedicated home quilting sewing machine doesn't need 100+ different stitches, it needs a decent straight stitch. it really doesn't need to be electronic either. But it really does need to have lots of light and a wide space between the needle and the head. The light on my machine is pathetic. I really love the bendable light I bought that sticks to the machine and allows you to spotlight right in front of the needle. Well, I'll get off my soapbox now! :-) This is a good thread. I love to know others are bummed by the same things that bum me! Do you think we will ever be 'heard'?

  10. #10
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    I'm confused as to what her question IS. Is it about space on the table or lighting?? I am a quilter and I want most of the space on the left.
    And most of the "good" brands of sewing machines, Bernina, Pfaff, Janome, Babylock, Viking, make wider machines for quilters. The problem is that they are expensive, but they did listen.

  11. #11
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    I just bought the new Baby Lock Crescendo. It has an 11 inch throat, 3 LED lights, a 25 X 18 inch detachable extension on the left side, plus a laser guide that points along the seam line. I have been a Bernina owner ( still have my Bernina 1030 mechanical from 1987) for many years but found the Baby Lock has what I need for quilting and general sewing and is much less pricey.

  12. #12
    Super Member lovelyl's Avatar
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    I use my vintage machines for most of my work (except applique). I purchased a light similar to the bendable light that attaches to the machine with magnets. It couldn't/shouldn't be used on a computerized machine due to the magnets. But I love it for my old black Singers, which I didn't want to stick a bendable light onto. It is LED and battery operated. You can also use the part that attaches to the machine as a base and set it up like a small desk lamp. My DH used it when the power was out and he had to grade papers for school! It was a bit pricey ($24), but less than my bendable. I purchased it at April 1930's.
    Linda
    There may be times we are powerless to prevent injustice, but there must never be a time when we fail to protest. - Elie Wiesel

  13. #13
    Super Member jcrow's Avatar
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    My sewing machine has rows of light under the throat and one for the needle. I wear #3 cheater glasses (very strong) and have a bendable light that lost its flexing. I'll try the rubberband idea on it. I have a 3 way lamp behind my machine and a standard Ott light behind me directed at my needle.

    Still not the correct light. I need something else bright shining in my needle area. Any ideas that aren't crazy expensive? I'm so hot with all these lights as they are right now.

  14. #14
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    Behind my sewing cabinet I have a Ott floor lamp, it bends out over my cutting mat and gives me light at my sewing area as well. At my embrodiery machine, which I have sitting on my MIL old Singer cabinet, with it open for maximum room, I hve an old floor lamp wiith 2 lights on it. These lights are moveable, I have one on my embroidery area, and the other on my paperwork. works great.

  15. #15
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    I, too, use old floor lamps. My favorite is an old brass one. The shade (with the light part) moves up and down so I can really aim it where it needs to go. I sure wish I could find about 10 more just like it, so "the girls" wouldn't have to share one lamp!

  16. #16
    Super Member Rose_P's Avatar
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    I have an architect's lamp, also known as a swing arm lamp, the kind with elbows that allow it to swing where you want it. I found that the clamp didn't work very well on my table, but there is a half inch thick projection at the bottom of the lamp that fits into the clamp. I drilled a half inch hole into my (old) sewing table, behind the machine and slightly to the right, and put the base of the lamp into it. It works well for me. If you decide to look for this kind of lamp study the base parts because not all of them would work this way. The post has to go straight down. Keep in mind that if the lamp is too close to the wall it's movements will be impeded. Also, before you drill be mindful of drawers or other moving parts. You don't want the lamp to interfere with those.
    "Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities." - Voltaire

  17. #17
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    No question is stupid. You were probably just the first person with enough courage to ask the question. And yes, light is a big problem for those of us senior citizens.
    http://www.oregonquilting.net
    I choose to give my life away for things that last forever

  18. #18
    Super Member purplefiend's Avatar
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    Wintersewer,
    I think its a general rant about the way sewing machine cabinets are designed, poor lighting on the machines and lack of space under the head of the machine.
    I do quite a bit of my quilt sewing with a treadle machine. I'm amazed how much space there is between the needle and the pillar of the machine on these old machines.; also the height between the arm of the machine and the bed is taller than a modern machine.
    Newer machines are also shorter in height in the harp area. I have modern machines and all but 1 has a mere 6.5" of harp space; they are high end machines. The largest machine is a Viking Sapphire 875 with a 10" throat; this is the one that I do most of my quilting with.
    My cabinet doesn't have much room to the right of the machine, but enough to put my pin cushion. I have a Horn Quiltmate II, lovely to use when I'm machine quilting, 4 machines can go in it just by changing out the plexiglass free arm insert.
    Sharon
    Last edited by purplefiend; 10-26-2012 at 09:56 AM. Reason: added text

  19. #19
    Super Member Weezy Rider's Avatar
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    It seems to be the way everything is designed. Looks and the designer's ego take precedence to increase sales. Common sense flies out the door. I've had a Pfaff for years, My Pfaffs have the embroidery unit in the back, and you can sew while it is on. That also means the embroidery arm is centered. There isn't enough light. I need the light under harp of the machine for embroidery as well as sewing and quilting. The CV did put in the lights - but the machine is too big and I like vertical bobbins so I won't buy it.

    Now quilting is popular. So machines et al. are getting bigger, and the accessories need more space. Good for those who sell, but a lot of us can't do the latest and greatest for many reasons. I just feel that either the mfg. of the machines or someone in the aftermarket business should have some pity or realize that they could do a very good business supplying to those who are making do.

    Yes, the machines are tried out and designed - but under optimum conditions and how many of us have that? I don't think I have ever seen a survey asking how we use our machines or what we would like or could use. Have you?

    BTW - those small lights I bought are available small enough for an old Featherweight.

  20. #20
    Super Member applique's Avatar
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    I have a clamp on bendable halogen light. It means I have plenty of light but it MUST be turned off when not in use as they get very hot.
    Debbie
    Machine It

  21. #21
    Senior Member kaelynangelfoot's Avatar
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    I have two lights (one standing next to my table) and one Ott light that that I bent around to shine from behind the sewing machine towards the front. Then I put 100 watt bulbs in the ceiling fixture. I find its very hard to get enough light, but those extra lamps helped!

  22. #22
    Junior Member Sarint's Avatar
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    I have a BIG pole lamp with 6 bulbs that I can move wherever I want it.

  23. #23
    Super Member Weezy Rider's Avatar
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    I haven't got room for a floor lamp or a pole lamp. My big gripe with the cabinets, both Horn and Koala, is no place on the right to even use a clamp on lamp. All the room is to the left of the machine. I can't add any lights, I grabbed the dining room and the only overhead is where the chandelier was. All the plugs are in a place where you would eventually need a cord across the floor. I have one of Michael's storage units on the right. Holds thread, feet, serger accessories, etc. There's a small 3 drawer unit on that which makes it too high and too far away for a lamp. I have clamp on lights I can't use. No place close to put them. The room isn't even square! Open plan type house from the 70s. Architect had his head elsewhere.

  24. #24
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    Funny you should ask that...went to Goodwill today and picked up two lamps. One is an ott lite on a floor stand - $10, and the bulb works. The other is a desk stand halogen, for $5.

    When my husband saw them in the cart he said,"Don't you have enough lamps?"

    Of course, the answer was a firm "NO!"

  25. #25
    Senior Member QuiltingHaven's Avatar
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    Old floor lamps work great and now that you can get LED lights that work in them - we have the best of both worlds.
    Busy in Ohio

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