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Thread: long arm quilting machine

  1. #1
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    Which long arm quilter do you suggest for home use and maybe for a few outside quilts? So many to choose from and so expensive.

  2. #2
    Super Member brushandthimble's Avatar
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    first off it depends on your budget
    second; you will get a different opinion from everyone that has one
    I have the handiquilter 16 and love it!! If budget was not my problem I would upgrade to the Avente. I do not have the room for anything larger like the fusion or gammill

  3. #3
    Super Member feline fanatic's Avatar
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    Yes there are a lot of choices and yes they are very expensive. I did a lot of research and test drove only 2 models the HQ 16 and the Innova. I ended up ordering an Innova.

  4. #4
    montanablu's Avatar
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    Brushandthimble is right - you will get a different answer from every one who has a long arm! I've had my Gammill for almost 8 yrs & the only thing I would ever replace it with is a newer one! It has the stitch regulator, (which I LOVE) but not the Statler Stitcher, (which I don't like). G' are expensive, but IMO worth every cent. They're amazingly reliable & the little bit of service mine has needed in 8 yrs has been minimal & easy to obtain. (Actually, the service tech comes to me which is great!!)

    Your best bet is to try as many as possible, look at your budget & how you intend to use it. Also important, the amount of space you have available to put it!! Quite an issue with most long arms!! Good luck! & have fun shopping!!

  5. #5
    Super Member quilter1's Avatar
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    I have a Tin Lizzie 18 LS and she is great. I really like the stitch regulator (LS). I looked at several before buying and really liked the setup.The frame is sturdy and I liked that way the wooden frame looked and functioned, the Gammills were out of my price range. Also Tin Lizzie makes some of the other machines so I felt that I should buy from the manufacturer.

  6. #6
    Super Member BKrenning's Avatar
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    Budget is the first step. How much are you willing to spend? Then look at the machines/frames within your budget. You might try some hands on time with ones that are out of your budget to see what the difference is,

    The cheapest setups would be a 9" domestic machine like a Juki TL98 on a Grace Frame. A step up from that would be a Bailey Home Quilter (a stretched domestic machine in a 13 or 15" throat) on a number of different home frames from Grace, Superquilter, Hinterberg, B-Line, Handiquilter, home-made, or others. A step up from that would be a Hinterberg Voyager, Homesteader (the original version), WowQuilter, or a stretched Juki TL98/Brother PC1500/etc.

    The next step up is where we really start shelling out some money--The Nolting FunQuilter, KenQuilt, Pennywinkle Pro, Hinterberg Indigo, Tin Lizzie/Viking 18 x 8, and more with the option of a more advanced frame.

    There are several more levels above these and more options that can me added on until you get up to the Gammills, APQS, A-1 and Nolting Pro's with robotics and auto fabric advance.

    An idea to get a machine out of your budget is to go partners with a close friend or relative. Most of us with home systems really spend as much if not more time piecing than quilting so the frame sits unused.

    Keep an eye on Ebay & Craigslist for systems. I got a super deal on ebay but you have to know as much if not more than the person you're buying from. Knowledge is power!

  7. #7
    Super Member charismah's Avatar
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    The Innova quilting machine by ABM international! Read up on them..they are fabulous!

  8. #8
    Google Goddess craftybear's Avatar
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    Wow, I would love to have a long arm, on my dream and wish list!

  9. #9
    Super Member Rose Marie's Avatar
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    One of the ladies in my group bought the 30 thousand dollar machine that does the design automatically.
    She quilted one of my quilts and it is fantastic.
    She originally bought a regular long arm that you quide but her shoulders and back hurt so much that she spent the money on the deluxe model. What a machine, it will take her years to make enough money quilting to pay for it.

  10. #10
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    I feel really stupid, but what does IMO mean?

  11. #11
    Super Member Rose L's Avatar
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    IMO = In My Opinion IMHO = In My Humble Opinion

    The Bailey Home Quilter is also available in 17" and works beautifully for doing your own quilts and few of your friends. Super easy to operate. No bells and whistles but gets the job done. Stitch regulator is available and there are add on robotics that can be added if you want to go that route. Also the price is very very right! Check out the website.

  12. #12
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    Thank you, I will!

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by quilter53
    Which long arm quilter do you suggest for home use and maybe for a few outside quilts? So many to choose from and so expensive.
    I have a Tin Lizzie 18LS that I bought new and have been using since January of 2011. I, like you, was buying my first machine and knew I wanted an 18" throat, but yet did not want to spend a lot of money, not knowing how much I would use it and not knowing how much skill I would have at doing the freehand quilting. I bought it for my own little hobby. I did not want to buy a high $ machine for this. So I bought th Tin Lizzie, which was affordable for me, and have had good luck with it. I have had to get an encoder replaced but otherwise it has been a good machine. It has a stitch regulator, and a 12' table so I can do large quilts. I have started quilting for customers and am just going to be listing my machine for sale very soon as I am moving up to a macine with a longer throat now. I am located in MN and if you live anywhere near here, and want to come and look at my machine, I can give you a demo and you can play with it. When I was looking for my first quilting machine a year ago, I only wnated to spend around 4or $5000. Well, it is hard to find a used 18" quilting machine for that unless they are really old or don't have a stitch regulator. Then I found the new Tin Lizzie with special pricing so I was able to pursue that. Now, because I have been fortunate to be skilled enoughat the freestyle quilting, and have started quilting for customers, I am at the point where I want to move on to a larger throat and am going to be selling my Tin Lizzie. If you are interested, or have any questions about the Tin Lizzie, please PM me.

  14. #14
    Senior Member sylviak's Avatar
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    I don't know where in OK you are from, but if you are in southern OK, I would be happy for you to drop by and play with my Voyager 17. They are reasonably priced. PM me if you are interested. I'm not selling mine, but because Nolting bought out Hinterberg, there are some used ones on the market.

  15. #15
    Super Member hudgoddess's Avatar
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    Be sure to look at used machines too. Longarmuniversity.com and houseofhanson.com both have classifieds for used longarms. The machines are workhorses and last practically forever. Get your new baby a spa treatment from a tech and you'll be good to go for half the price!
    The only machines I don't see on there are the innovas. Does that tell us something? Good luck!

  16. #16
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    I took delivery of a HandiQuilter Fusion with ProStitcher in June-- it makes gorgeous quilts! (Okay, _*I*_ make gorgeous quilts now!)

    I was supposed to have more training than I've had but I bought the four DVDs that HQ offers and learned it on my own in very little time.

    I love it and am SOOOOO glad I bought it!! (They are much more reasonably priced for us "every day" people who still work at a day job and aren't full time professional quilters-- YET!)

    Just my two yen,
    Marcia

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