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Thread: Machine Recommendations?

  1. #1
    Senior Member sikesjj's Avatar
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    Machine Recommendations?

    I ma looking for a new sewing/quilting machine, mainly quilting. I have hand me down machines;Sears Best Kenmore that is approx 47 years old, and a Kenmore model 385 that my mother in law gave, she bought it at a estate sale. Neither one quilts well, and I am about to lose my mind. I sew all sorts of stuff for my daughters from dresses to stuffed animals. Please help me I am overwhelmed!!!!! I am leaning towards Janome since I have a dealer not far from me and from reading other posts.

    Thanks,
    Jamie

  2. #2
    Super Member Girlfriend's Avatar
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    Please see my recent post regarding a very affordable Janome

    http://www.quiltingboard.com/main-f1...n-t216913.html

    Hope this helps.

  3. #3
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    If you have a dealer near you I would definitely go there and try out machines. I honestly think that having a great dealer is one of the most important things. Take a charity quilt or something with you and really try it out if you decide to go that route. Of course with all of the help you can get on this board - that is like having a zillion great dealers.

  4. #4
    Junior Member hybearn8er's Avatar
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    I have a Viking Mega Quilter, not the longarm but the short arm.I love it for everything! It is a little heavier duty which makes sewing heavier seams easier. It stitches at a higher speed than most machines too. It sews with any brand of thread and makes beautiful stitches!

  5. #5
    Super Member grammy Dwynn's Avatar
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    I love my Janome 6500.
    "I hear and I forget. I see and I remember. I do and I understand." -Confucius

    https://picasaweb.google.com/home

  6. #6
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    I have a Viking Platinum - about 12 yrs old. I don't machine quilt - except for a few smaller things - so no help there. Otherwise it's a dream. Auto tension is the greatest thing since sliced bread. I sew other things besides quilts and it's a dream to work with. There have been a couple of recent threads here on the board as to methods of going about selecting machines. Sorry-head is a little fuzzy this AM with the beginnings/edges of a migraine so I'm no help with a search right now. Maybe someone else can help with that. Good luck in your search.

  7. #7
    Super Member quiltingeileen's Avatar
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    I love my Janome Horizon 7700! Can't say enough about it. Wonderful machine. I would buy from a dealer that is close by. My dealer gives free lessons on the machine for the life of the machine. Really helpful. Good luck.

  8. #8
    Power Poster mighty's Avatar
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    Depends on $ you want to spend and functions you want. What ever you get Enjoy!!!!!

  9. #9
    Super Member jcrow's Avatar
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    I spent quite a bit and bought the Bernina 830 and it is perfect for quilting and piecing and embroidering. You may be able to find one used that is more affordable. They come with BSR.
    "Be yourself...everyone else is taken."
    Strong people don't put others down...they build them up."
    "Remember that your instincts are more important than rules"

  10. #10
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    I have two Baby Locks and love them both. My bigger one I use most of the time. It is 5 years old; have never had a problem with it; does embroidery also; cuts automatically; threads automatically and tells me when the bobbin is running out. I would not own anything other than Baby Lock.

  11. #11
    Super Member Candace's Avatar
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    Go to your nearest dealer, as was suggested to see what's available. Then, do your research.

  12. #12
    Junior Member yweinst's Avatar
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    I love my janome. I have the 7700.

  13. #13
    Senior Member Sally J's Avatar
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    My best suggestion is to get a machine with at least a 10-11 inch throat. I've been FMQ for years on a Viking D1 and I love it but the smaller throat makes it hard with larger quilts. I just bought a Janome 8200 (brand new model). Has a 11 inch throat, wow, it makes it so easy.
    I agree, you need to go to as many dealers that you can in your area. You really need to get locally so if there are problems you can have it taken care of easily. Take you own fabric to use as a test and even the thread you usually use and really take them for a test drive. A long test drive!!!!! Everyone has different wants and you need to get a perfect match. Good luck. Remember, negotiate the price (just like buying a car) you will get a better price.

  14. #14
    Junior Member trennag's Avatar
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    I have a brother sq9000 and used it for years for quilting and loved it! It was $200 at walmart and i have never had a problem. It also came with all the quilting feet you need. Its the sq9050 now... same machine with more stitches. I recently got a baby lock symphony and its amazing! I would go to different dealers near you and test drive machines... you will find what works best for you! Have fun!!!
    Brother SQ9000, Baby Lock Crescendo

    Slowly but surely restoring these lovely machines...
    Singer 66 (1929) Singer 27 treadle (1909) Singer 99 (1925)



  15. #15
    Power Poster MadQuilter's Avatar
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    My favorite is the Baby Lock Symphonie but I know that Janome users are very loyal to their machines. My advice is to identify the MUST HAVE features and then go test drive.
    Martina
    Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Fabric!

  16. #16
    Power Poster Prism99's Avatar
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    I think it's important to establish your price range first, and then the features that are ***really*** important to you. For quilting, one of those features might be a larger harp size. Other often-cited ones for quilting are needle-down and auto-cut. Vikings have an auto-lift feature that sounds absolutely wonderful for machine applique.

    One of my most important features, that I don't often see mentioned, is the quietness of the machine. My Bernina 1230 just hums; I would not be happy with a machine that clanks or whistles! But that's me

    Try out as many different machine brands as possible. Because quilting is important to you, prepare some 3-layer sandwiches to take with you so you can try out quilting on each machine. Also, bring some strips of your own fabric to piece together. This helps you assess how straight fabric feeds and how good the stitch looks. Dealerships supply you with fabric that has been starched to the hilt because stiff fabrics hide a lot of minor flaws in stitch quality.

    Sewing machines are like cars. The "feel" of different brands is different, and everyone has a different idea of what's important.

    Edit: State fairs and quilt guild shows are often good places to go to "test drive" different machines. Also, fair and show prices are often the lowest prices you can get from local dealerships.

  17. #17
    Super Member AliKat's Avatar
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    I totally agree with Prism99. Get your mind around the 'needs' but do keep a list of 'wants.' Machines demo'd at quilt shows and such are nicely discounted after the show. Just approach the dealer asap and let them know what you want and can pay.

    Try all machines that have good dealer accessibility and classes or help with learning ... and re-learning.

    Go with whatever machine YOU bond with. By bond with, I mean the one you can most intuitively understand and operate. I had the opportunity years ago with a Bernina but that model had a little glass like area to show which stitch I was using. Well, I had little kids and a neighborhood of many more. I knew I was easily distractable and that I wouldn't get the stitch I wanted if the kids distracted me. I went with a used Singer where I knew what stitch I was selecting immediately and as that was pretty much all that was available to me at the time.

    I've tried them all. I'm a Pfaff person because it had the dual feed that kept me sewing/quilting due to my arthritis.
    Have fun quilting! If it isn't fun, you will miss a lot.
    ali

  18. #18
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    I have a singer/gammill long arm that I bought second hand. It cost my brother $1200 and it's on a 14' frame.
    I have quilted many many quilts since 2006. I don't know how to quilt on a small machine.

    Got this one from a quilt shop in north Mississippi, if you have a quilt shop call them they may have one someone traded in

  19. #19
    Super Member nygal's Avatar
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    All of my machines are Brother and I love them all. I've purchased mine from www.allbrands.com
    They have FREE shipping and they are a Brother dealer and their shipping is super fast!!
    When it seems like the world is falling to pieces remember that the pieces are falling into place. We are nearing closer to the End Times.

  20. #20
    Super Member Shelbie's Avatar
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    There are no perfect machines out there so it means that you need to try them out and get the best match for you. Many here recommend Janome machines but my Janome 6500 was the most expensive, worst machine that I every owned. I now have a Juki TL98Q that I bought slightly used from a guild member for a quarter of the price I paid for the Janome and it is an absolutely wonderful machine for quilting. Good luck making this important decision.
    Shelbie from the High County in Southern Ontario

  21. #21
    Senior Member rrhaigh's Avatar
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    I like Pfaffs because of their built in walking foot. However, the newer ones are made in China and not near as good as the older ones. I purchased used ones to get away from the made in China machines. I love my Pfaff 2056 - great features and a joy to sew on.
    Robin
    robinsquiltingroom.blogspot.com
    Southern California

  22. #22
    Senior Member nangars's Avatar
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    I loved my baby locks also I have 3. One decorators choice that I take to class, my baby lock quilters quest that I use for most of my general sewing at home, then my Baby Lock Ellisimo that I use mostly for my embroidery, love, love, love it. I do a lot of tote bags and I embroidery them for gifts.
    Nancy. . . Alameda, Ca.

  23. #23
    Super Member maryb119's Avatar
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    I love my Pfaff machines. I have an older 7550 model and a 2144. Both have built in duel feed and that is a wonderful feature. I have only done regular maintainence on each machine and had no problems with either one. I am very happy with them. Each has lots of embroidery stitches on them. I didn't have very many stitches on my Kenmore so when I got the 7550 I embroideried everything I made. If you make a list of what you want on a machine, it will help you to decided which is the best machine for you.

  24. #24
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    I am pro Brother. I have 3 sewing machines that are Brother & haven't had any problems with either of them.

  25. #25
    Super Member Nanny's dollface's Avatar
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    Like many have said, buy the best you can afford. I recently was in your shoes. How I approached my search:
    1. Identified local shops that sell machines. If I needed repair work I wanted a local dealer rather than having to ship the machine out.
    2. Identified the features that I wanted - keep an open mind as there are features that I never knew existed. Your priorities may change.
    3. Set a maximum price point.
    4. Visit the shops and test drive each machine. Note the feel of sewing, the noise level, how easy is it to thread, practice with types of stitches.
    5. Find out what is offered with purchase: classes, trade-ins, trade-ups?

    I went to the store thinking I would try out a Singer- that's what I had 30 years ago. Ended up with a Viking Emerald 118 and love it. It has been a work horse. Being in between jobs, I have used the machine almost every day for 6-8 hours making quilts and other sewing projects. I have even FMQ a Queen size quilt despite the narrow neck.
    Good Luck shopping.

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