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Thread: I really need a quilter's sweing machine

  1. #1
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    I've got a Kenmore and it's about 10 years old. Pretty much worn out. That thing paid for itself over and over again. I also have a serger...love love LOVE it. But I so need a quilting machine. Nothing at all fancy, just basic. Suggestions?

  2. #2
    mamatobugboo's Avatar
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    janome 1600P - single straight stitch machine, fast as all dickens, 9 in. throat...about $700....check it out!

    Juki has a similar machine and I believe Husq...has one too? Good luck!

  3. #3
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    Class 15 clone.
    Those are 60s older, basic workhorses. I got one at a thrift store, for 20 bucks and I wouldn't part with it for anything! They are awesome.
    If I were you, I'd keep my eyes peeled at thrift stores. Of course, I'm a little biased, I love old sewing machines! Yeah, sorta collect them :roll:

  4. #4
    Super Member judy_68's Avatar
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    I collect old Singers too. I love them. I finally got a featherweight and love it.

    Judy in Ohio

  5. #5
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    You can get some very reasonably priced elnas, that should last a long time. But, which ever machine you get, you should test drive various different brands and models of machines.

  6. #6
    Super Member b.zang's Avatar
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    If you plan to do your own quilting, look for a machine that has the largest area between the needle arm and the body. That's where you'll be stuffing the quilt!
    Needle down is a nice feature as well.
    To me, those are the basics, everything else is gravy.

  7. #7
    Power Poster littlehud's Avatar
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    If you just need one for piecing there are a number of them on the market, but if you want to machine quilt or free motion I would recomend the Juki machine. I got mine through Sewvac.com. It was 599.00 with free shipping and I love it.

  8. #8
    Power Poster BellaBoo's Avatar
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    The Juki, Brother 1500, and Janome 1600 are basically alike. You should be able to find either one on sale for about $500. I have the Brother 1500 and it's great for machine quilting on a frame or on a table. Check out each one.

  9. #9
    Super Member JoanneS's Avatar
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    I'm glad you asked this question, so I can sing the praises of Pfaff again! Pfaffs have BUILT-IN fabric feed, so you don't need walking feet. Believe me, it's great both for piecing AND for quilting. I used to love Viking - it was my first computer sewing machine back in the 80s - but I hated having to attach the walking foot. I now own 3 Pfaff sewing machines - including an embroidery one, and I love them all. The dealers are terrific - both in Tucson, where I spend the winter, and in CT where I am the rest of the year. Plenty of classes to learn how to use the machines + other classes for fun.

  10. #10
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    One thing I won't tell you to do, is to purchase this or that machine. what works for me might not for you.

    I tell you a couple of thoughts and you can go from there. Number One PURCHASE from a DEALER, their support is invaluable. If you need service you are going to have to go there anyway, why not start there. It's a relationship worth building.

    What are YOUR needs, do you want a straight stitch only machine or do you want a couple of other stitches thrown in, maybe a blanket stitch so you can applique, or a few others so you can do some thread painting. Gather up a handful of material that you will use and head on down to the dealer, find a machine you like and ride it hard and put it up wet. See what it will do for you under all conditions.

    I have no idea what your budget is, but consider this you had your last machine for 10 years, cost you what $300 ten years ago, that's $30 bucks a year not a bad investment. Don't be afraid to spend a little more on a quality machine, it will pay for itself down the road.

  11. #11

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    You can go directly to most sewing machine sites like janome's and click the features you want. Then they will show what machines will work for you. I started out on the 3200 to make sure I would like to quilt:)Only to know the addiction was here and wanted to beef up the speed and throat plate so ended up getting their 6600. As you can see and have learned, our machines are for a many year investment:0)Spend the money and get what is good. I am lucky in the fact we have 2 dealers w/repair w/in 30min either way of me. I bought mine at a machine dealer 'only' due to the better price I could get from them. Good luck! Skeat....who loves her machines!

  12. #12
    KinMD's Avatar
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    I agree with JoanneS, I just bought a Pfaff Quilt Expression with the free motion attachment. I have a lot to learn, but I am lovng it!

  13. #13
    Super Member alaskasunshine's Avatar
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    I went on e-bay and bought a 1934 Singer Featherweight. I LOVE mine. It sews like a dream. Just be sure that whom ever you buy from (if you do) that they pack it properly.. SOOO important.
    Let us know what you choose. My only regret is that I waited till this year to buy one. Mine was less than $300.00

    happy shopping!
    Alaskasunshine

  14. #14
    Super Member gcathie's Avatar
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    depending on what you want to pay......make sure you give a good machine a test run ...I find what works for one don't work for the other.....so get your walking shoes one and go visit the different sewing machine places...and give them a spin.....then you might want to check out the places suggested on here like ebay....Happy hunting......:-)

    Oh my favorite machine currently is a little White refurbished....got for $199.00 about 3 years ago but also have a Singer and a Kenmore...so there you go....love my Singer too but it is about 22 years old

  15. #15
    basicfun's Avatar
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    Wow, lots of info on what to buy in a sewing machine. Now that I am quilting more, I am also in the market for a better machine. I am now using a Kenmore Zig Zag 1400, which is 40 years old (parents got it for my 11th birthday), moved with me 5 times, works great. I just bought a walking foot for it and service it myself (cleaning, etc) Never had any problems with it (knock on wood). I am checking for a newer model locally. With all your suggestions, I now have more information under my belt. Thank you.

  16. #16
    Power Poster sharon b's Avatar
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    And to throw another name out there... I love my Brothers ... I had my first one paid less than $100.00 and it lasted 20 years, since then have bought 3 more brothers each for a different purpose. First one paid less than 75.00 for .. my original Brother wore out as I was finishing a dress for my niece had to have a replacement that night and no money.. then I got the Brother SE270D .. has the disney embroidery built in .. and then last year bought the Brother 6000 , I wanted a nicer machine just for quilting... Bought all three from Walmart
    Sharon

  17. #17
    Super Member canmitch1971's Avatar
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    I know they are not cheap but I have a Janome 6500 that I just adore. It has a thread cutter and a threader too along with I don't know how many different fancy stitches. It is a very well made machine that is really heavy. That is my only complaint, it is extremely heavy to carry. The Janome 6600 is one step up from it.

  18. #18
    Super Member Rose Marie's Avatar
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    My first quilting machine is a brother xr65 that I bought for 129 dollars.
    It even came with a quilting table and a walking foot. But it does not have needle down or stay stitch and no long throat. But for a stand by machine it works fine.
    My new machine is a H Viking Sapphire 830 with all the bells and whistles but it cost 1100 dollars two years ago. Cheaper now Im sure. It has the 10in throat that I love. I just wish that it didnt sit so low that it is hard to get your hands in to change needles. Why cant they make a machine that is a little bit higher, they all seem to be low. It is a big machine and heavy so not good for taking to classes. The 850 has the embroidery which would have been nice but not right now.
    Someday I would like to have a mach that is just for embroidery. Any ideas on that?

  19. #19
    Super Member peaceandjoy's Avatar
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    You might also find a reasonably priced used machine at dealers. My Bernina dealer has many used machines, of several brands, that have been traded in. From basic to fancy, old to almost new. Quite reasonably priced, too.

  20. #20
    Senior Member hulahoop1's Avatar
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    Last year, I purchased a Bernina Aurora 430 with the BSR attachment and love it very much. I use it for everything including putting it on a machine quilt frame even though the throat space is a bit small. It replaced a Bernina 810 that I had for 29 years that finally gave up the ghost. Last week, I bought a 1947 Singer Featherweight 221 that was in pretty good shape and I can hardly wait to use it to piece quilt tops.

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