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Thread: machines on ebay, has anyone ever bought?

  1. #1
    Junior Member marybs's Avatar
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    Hi! I am new to all of this, but here goes!
    I want to buy a Bernina 430 or 440. I see them on Ebay but wonder if anyone has ever bought a machine that way? I am so afraid to shell out so much money and end up with a lemon. Any thoughts or experiences?

  2. #2
    Super Member Marcia's Avatar
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    I bought a 1957 Singer Featherweight on Ebay about 5 years ago. It was a smooth deal and I got a great machine.

    Research the seller before you buy---look at how long they have been an Ebay seller and what their feedback score looks like. You can get a great deal on Ebay if you are a savvy shopper. Good luck!

  3. #3
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    I have bought several machines on Ebay, and all have been great machines. Look at the descriptions, and in many instances, it will say that the machine has been serviced, cleaned, etc.

    I have purchased 4 featherweights, 2 old Singer heavy duty machines, and an 1888 Singer hand crank machines, that is absolutely beautiful and works fine.

    Good luck.

  4. #4
    Super Member Barbm's Avatar
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    I purchased a few (for gifts for people starting to sew). Just be careful- read the feedback, etc. I got one machine, a pleasure, another not what it was represented- still haven't had the time to really sit and figure it out. Probably going to take it to local Singer place and ask for lessons to really use it.

    Bought my brand new Juki also from Ebay- allbrands.com. Love it, was the best purchase I made on Ebay (or as my family calls it- Epay).

    Good luck! And don't forget all the fabric deals out there- I have added to my stash by buying bundles and scraps, etc. Or- to find more of something you can't get anymore- there's also something fun to be found on Ebay.

  5. #5
    Power Poster BellaBoo's Avatar
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    I buy from Ebay all the time but nothing over $25. I have had only one bad seller in all these years. Be sure and check the shipping/handling charges before bidding. And that the seller knows how to pack to ship a sewing machine. Ebay now has buyer protection, no seller gets the money until the buyer is satisfied. I would use that if I bid on a sewing machine.

  6. #6
    Power Poster dunster's Avatar
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    I make purchases on EBay all the time, am usually satisfied but have run into a few problems, most of which were resolved. That said, I probably would not buy a new high-end sewing machine on EBay.

    When I purchased my Bernina 440QE, I bought at a local shop with an excellent service reputation, and I purchased an additional warranty. I can take my machine in at any time for cleaning, repair, etc. without charge, and that means a lot to me. I also got free lessons on using the machine. With the newer machines, there are often software updates that can be loaded in when the machine is in for warranty service.

  7. #7
    Super Member alaskasunshine's Avatar
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    I bought 2 machines on e-bay and neither was packed to travel any farther than across the street. HELLO I live in Alaska. I made it crystal clear before I made my purchase !

    One machine is usable the other is still sitting in the same place it was months ago. A quiet reminder of how some people don't care about the reciepient.

    I do love my featherweight and use it often! If you live near the machine perhaps it will be ok!

  8. #8
    Junior Member marybs's Avatar
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    Thanks for the advise.
    I would save enough on ebay to open the door to being able to own the Bernina 440. I am getting close enough to being able to buy the 430 new. I guess I am getting greedy want the 440 when I see I could afford it used.
    Great point about warranty, I might call the store I use to see what they say about that. Thanks tons!
    Any more opinions would be greatly appreciated! Thanks all!

  9. #9
    Super Member LindaR's Avatar
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    Iam a ebay alcoholic.....LOL I bought my FW on ebay also and have had very good luck with books, clothes etc. If you have dougts buy from a known dealer...Allbrands, Kens sewing from AL is a really good one, good luck

  10. #10
    Super Member Quiltgranny's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by marybs
    Hi! I am new to all of this, but here goes!
    I want to buy a Bernina 430 or 440. I see them on Ebay but wonder if anyone has ever bought a machine that way? I am so afraid to shell out so much money and end up with a lemon. Any thoughts or experiences?
    I think it's exciting that you want to buy one of the finest brands of machines available today!! I'm a two time Bernina owner, and was recently looking at ebay for one, myself (before I got the 2nd one). I belong to a wonderful Yahoo Group called the Bernina Thirtysomethings, so called as it was started originally for the owners of the old mechanical 730's, 830's, 930's and so on. They've since branched out to allow any Bernina owner or wannabe to post and have said of late (my loose paraphrase) -

    "due to the short supply (once we get 'em, we don't let go of 'em very often) and huge demand of folks looking for Berninas, many of the ones being sold on Ebay are WAY OVER priced! Many people are being taken to the cleaners on Ebay deals over Berninas."

    How sad is that? Dunster has given you some excellent advice here, especially when purchasing a Bernina. You will come to appreciate the local service, classes and availability of parts, etc.

    Most folks don't know how to truly prepare a sewing machine for shipping, even the ones that say they do, I wonder. I did recently acquire my 2nd Bernie through a dear friend many states away. I was really leary about the shipping, but she knew exactly how to ship them. When Fed-Ex delivered "her", the guy started to trip over the threshold of our front door :shock: and which point I nearly had heart failure, as I could just see my new baby going all over the floor. :shock:

    This delivery guy said, "Oh, don't worry ma'am, these boxes are guarateed to withstand being dropped from a 2 story building...." Needless to say, my jaw was on the floor now! :shock: He went on to explain that if Fed-Ex packages your stuff, they do so in such a manner so it WILL withstand a 2 story drop as many of their plants have conveyor belts 2 stories up, and "packages gets bunched up and fall off the belt all the time.." Now, don't you feel better for learning that? :?

  11. #11
    Moderator Jim's Gem's Avatar
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    I got my Bernina 630 on E-Bay just over 2 years ago. I was scared to death but it all worked out great. The seller of mine was some lady who had barely used it, not at all on the embroidery unit, who took it to one of those "I Sold It" Stores.
    It was boxed in the original box inside another padded box and came with no damage. I think it came by Fed Ex too. It is a great machine and I got it at for a lot less than buying a new one.
    Since mine is a used machine, I do not have a warrenty on it. I do have a Bernina dealer about a mile from my house and have it cleaned and checked on there.

  12. #12
    Senior Member nellebelles's Avatar
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    My DH and I have purchased many sewing machines through ebay. The very first one we purchased was a Viking Designer SE. UPS was the shipper and the box came in the door rattling... I was totally freaked out. I told the driver that he needed to inspect the box. Basically, he just said if there was a problem that ALL we needed to do is file a claim. :roll: Well...sadly, the machine was VERY broken. :evil: We filed a claim and to make a long and very frustrating story short, we were paid back for most of the cost, but we got to keep the machine. My DH, being a sewing machine technician, was able to fix the machine by buying parts and reconstructing it. Works like a dream now. Since that time, we always do business with sellers with 100% positive feedback and many sales, and let them know that we prefer FedEx for shipping. All of that should protect you, but not a guarantee. We recently bought another machine off of ebay, and not too many days later, got an email from a detective, telling us the machine we bought was stolen! We have to give the machine back (of course!!!), and we were worried we would be out the $999 we paid for it. Fortunately, we have the buyers protection from PayPal, and we always pay our PayPal with our Visa card and have buyers protection from them too. So, we will get our money back from one place or the other. There was no indication anywhere on that listing that the machine was stolen. The seller didn't know it was stolen either. He bought it from some clearing house in Chicago. I guess, words of wisdom are "Buyer beware", and if you can, pay with a credit card through PayPal and you will be protected from losing your money.

  13. #13
    Super Member sewjoyce's Avatar
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    I bought my Bernina 200 on e-bay. I was really scared to death also but it turned out to be a very smooth transaction and I love the machine!!

  14. #14
    Power Poster amma's Avatar
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    The only thing that I can add is if you do buy a machine that has a warranty, check out the closest licensed service shop to you. I found out that I have to take my machine on a 3 hour drive or pay to have it shipped there to maintain my warranty. Buying a used machine does not guarantee that the balance of the warranty transfers to the second owner.

  15. #15
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    I purchased a Centennial FW and a old Singer hand-crank machine and my Elna all on eBay. (all shipped via plain old post office) The crank was from an eBay shop sort of place, so there was a good feedback rating established and we got just what we wanted and it was packed well. I took a real chance on the FW and Elna, as both were from private parties and brand new sellers. The FW was from a man cleaning out his mother's things after her death. I had researched the 'net and found a great site that spelled out in detail how to pack one and he followed that to the letter and I got a great little machine with no problems at all. The Elna was from a private party who got it, started quilting, and immediately wanted a top-of-the-line machine. They still had all the original packing, and the doodads that came with it, and even included the original receipt. I've been very satisfied with all the machines. It is a "buyer beware" environment, but can be quite successful. I did a lot of emailing with the sellers prior to bidding, asking why they were selling and do they know how to pack it, etc. I know they can lie about it, but I believed them and have been very happy with my purchases.

  16. #16
    Super Member tuesy's Avatar
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    My son bought my first ever Sewing/Embroidery machine on ebay. Brand new. No problems with it at all. Since then I've bought a NV1000 Brother combo machine for my DD. Works like a dream. With my other 3 machines, I bought them from a dealer.

  17. #17
    Lisa T's Avatar
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    I just ordered a Bernina 430! I am not getting a steal on it or anything ($1999), but I am buying it locally which is important to me. I should get it next Monday- yay! I am excited about it as this is a HUGE upgrade for me. I have never had a Bernina before but I liked a lot of stuff about it. If you get the 430, you can add the BSR later which is the only difference between the machines, I think.

    I ordered one sewing machine in the past from e-bay. I had borrowed a friend's Kenmore machine and broke it. Rather than pay to have it fixed, I ordered one exactly like it from e-bay. I paid about $130 or so for it, because it was listed as "Like NEW!" and when I got it, it was really dirty and even smelled funky- they must have had pets. Also, the person who packed it used little foam pellets and they got all over inside the machine. One other issue- the thread holder pin was broken, which I believe was done during shipping.

    So much for saving the repair cost- I had two broken machines at this point, but the one from ebay had not been used much so it was worth putting the money into it.

    I brought both machines to a repair shop and the guy put the thread holder from the old one on the new one and cleaned it up for me. He said the machine itself was in great shape, so the seller did not lie about that. Overall it was an ok experience for me, but I would hesitate to do it again, especially for a high dollar machine that you will use for 20+ years. The only reason I did buy from e-bay in the first situation was because I wanted to replace the exact machine and they are not sold anymore. I probably spent more replacing this machine than it was ever worth brand new, but it avoided any hard feelings so it was worth it.

    For my new machine, I am a firm believer in buy it where you will get it serviced. You are building a relationship with your serviceman because you are going to see him at least once a year for a looong time. They are going to treat you better if you buy from them.

  18. #18
    Senior Member hulahoop1's Avatar
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    I bought my Featherweight on eBay about 6 months ago without any problems whatsoever. Seller was quick to respond to emails and willing to ship to Hawaii. Item was everything it was advertised and was nicely packed. I fully agree with all that has been said here about watching sellers' feedback, etc. etc. That said, I purchased a BSR for my Bernina Aurora 430 last summer and received an empty box. I immediately contacted seller and they made it right. Probably helped that I wanted a replacement BSR and not my money back. Got the money back anyway, oh well.

  19. #19
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    I have purchased 3 machines from EBay, a $900. Pfaff 2056, a $1100 Husqvarna Rose, and an old $50 Singer. The Rose was from an individual about 100 miles from here, so I arranged to pick it up in person. Fantastic machine! Like new condition. I only use it for embroidery, but the field is only 4x4 so have since bought a Janome 350 E (embroidery only) which I use most of the time. Pfaff came from a dealer in NJ, no problem except dealer was a little slow in shipping. This is my main machine. It has obviouly been used, but was well taken care of and runs like a dream. The old Singer, size up from a featherweight, was a disaster. Portable case was almost demolished, is unusable. It was laid in the box on bubble wrap, and a layer of bubble wrap placed over it. I had asked for and was willing to pay extra insurance which wasn't taken out. With some help from DH, it runs, but there was no reason it had to be beat to death thru the mail. No recovery on that one! So I guess we just take our chances! Overall, I've been quite happy with ebay...

  20. #20

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    I bought my quilting machine on line but it was a local buy. There's so many scamers out there that I would be very careful. My opinion: Try to wait for someone in your vicinity before buying on line.

  21. #21
    Sara Street's Avatar
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    Hi nellebelles - ouch! But, you know what? My red flags went up that you got an email from a detective that "says" it was stolen??? I'd want some proof - which, of course you're going to have to show for the buyer protection refund anyway. I would suspect a partnership of selling and reclaiming that machine!

    Just my two cents worth!
    Sara

    PS I bought a Bernina Deco embroidery machine on Ebay in 1999, and had a great transaction. However, the warranty did NOT transfer and my local dealer wasn't very cooperative about talking about anything except trading up! Classes were only if you bought from them, too...

  22. #22
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    I bought the Brother Disney Sewing/Embroidery Machine on Ebay in 2005 and love it. It was considered refurbished, but you would never know. It was packaged just like from the factory in brand shiny new condition. All parts sealed in bags, etc. I have really enjoyed it, and the dealer answered my emails efficiently. I did the buy now.

  23. #23
    Junior Member marybs's Avatar
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    Thanks all!!! I put a payment down on the Bernina 440! Yeah! It has been a long time coming. I called a lot of local shops, found my best price and then went to the store I wanted to buy from. They honored the lowest price I found. I am so happy.
    I chickened out of buying on line. My husband convinced me when he said that he would never buy a used car with out first test driving it. That worked for me! Maybe a machine that wasn't soooo expensive, but for this one I am going new!!
    Thanks again for all of your terrific advice. What a great group!!!!

  24. #24
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    I have a sewing machine "on the truck" as we speak.

    I have owned a New Home Memory Craft 7000 for 20+ years. I found one for my daughter and was the only bidder because the electric/foot controls had been lost. I figured that someone who sewed so little she lost the foot control, would not have sewn much at all. The machine was Pristine/ I went to SewingWishList and found someone who sold me a used electric/foot control.

    I just found another one where no one was bidding and the seller has a high rating and also a return policy. Seems as though people will not bid on a machine unless they are less than $25. This machine originally sold for better than $1500. I have phoned Janome about machines listed on eBay and have always gotten helpful information.

    I found these machines, when bidding starts low, wind up selling for about $400. I have gotten both of mine for less than half that amount. I think it was because I played the "waiting game" and won.

    For this one, the seller agreed to delay shipping while I was out of town. I am expecting it on Tuesday next week. I anticipate another great machine. I have 2 daughters, and this one is for #2. But I will keep it and use it for a while to make sure it is OK.

    That's about all I purchase on eBay, with exception of books on half.com


  25. #25
    Power Poster sandpat's Avatar
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    I'm really happy that you are getting your new machine! And getting it from a dealer. I love ebay, use it all the time for lots of stuff, however, I did go to my dealer and bought...guess what...a clean used 200E from them. With that relationship, I got free lessons and they are super helpful, I would have missed all that if I had bought it on ebay.

    Congrats! Can't wait to see your new girl!

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