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Thread: Overwelmed...looking at new machines...help from Bernina owners, please!

  1. #26
    Super Member Margie's Avatar
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    I love my 830 it quilts beautiful and the embroidery is beautiful.

  2. #27
    Kas
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    Quote Originally Posted by nursie76
    My first Bernina was a 440QE, I bought it gently used and returned 3 weeks later and added the embroidery module. I loved it! Later, I decided I would like to upgrade to a machine with 9 mm decorative stitches, so looked at a 640, but then was offered a wonderful deal and traded it in on a 730, an awesome machine. Then for my B-day DH worked a trade and got me the 830 LE...my dream machine. I also had a 330 as a travel machine, but only 5 mm stitches and no BSR. So, on Saturday DH worked a trade and I now have a 450. It uses the BSR and has a 9mm stitch. Each time I traded, I got in trade value what I paid for the machine I was trading. So, if you settle on a 440 for instance and then later want more bells and whistles, you can trade up. I would say take some quilt sandwiches and got to your dealer and spend the afternoon and play with the various machines. Decide how much you want to spend...lowest and highest and work your way up. Good luck, please let us know what you decide.
    Very true. Sort of like the BMW of the sewing world. You get full value on a trade in unless it is ridiculously old. So far, I can't justify the 820. I am able to quilt a big quilt in my 640. The trick is to go slow and use the "puddle" method. It can be a workout, though. But I need a new van and those suckers cost almost $40,000!

  3. #28
    RST
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    I have the 440 QE, and I do quilt full sized, Queen, and even one King quilt on it, free motion.

    The features I wish I had (but won't upgrade because I can't justify the cost) -- larger bobbin, low bobbin warning, thread snip, and larger throat.

    RST

  4. #29
    Super Member slk350's Avatar
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    Good luck with your puchase. This is very interesting to me, I may be getting another machine. I would like one that does FMQ. My Viking #1 died and not sure I want to have it fixed again.

  5. #30
    Super Member nursie76's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RST
    I have the 440 QE, and I do quilt full sized, Queen, and even one King quilt on it, free motion.

    The features I wish I had (but won't upgrade because I can't justify the cost) -- larger bobbin, low bobbin warning, thread snip, and larger throat.

    RST
    Oh yes!!! I forgot to mention the larger bobbin. After having to stop quite frequently to put in a new bobbin on my Juki when I used it on the frame and my 440 and 730 when I FMQ with out the frame, the larger bobbin is heaven!!! I also love that it will tell you the percentage of the bobbin left when it reaches 20% and then does a % countdown. I usually refill at 8%. Sweet!

  6. #31
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    Have you had any issues with the 820? It seems as though, when they first came out, there were some bad problems with them, hopefully they have all been resolved by now.

  7. #32
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    I'm not aware of issues with the 820, only with the 830 when it first came out. Mine has been fabulous.

  8. #33
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    First let met say....keep your 910. I am a Bernina Girl. I have a 1090, 440QE and an 830. I love them all for different reasons. My 1090 is a work horse. I have embroidery modules for the other 2. I love to embroider on the 440 and LOVE to quilt and piece quilts on my 830. The 830 does have the larger throat for quilting which is great and just sews like a dream. And really is better for embroidery because of all the features, but I just love sewing with it. BUT....with that said, I do have more issues with the 830 than the others. More computer stuff, sensors and seems like every time I take it for service and updates something new goes wrong. I get all my machines cleaned yearly and the other two don't have many issues. My 830 is back at the dealer for the second time this month. New issues from the first time. I just feel the more bells and whistles the more problems. I thinks if you don't think you will used all that an 830 has to offer than the 5 or 6 series or the 440 with embroidery capabilities is better. Just my thoughts......
    Quote Originally Posted by roselady View Post
    I really never thought this day would come....for my birthday, Oct. 22, my DH suggested that I look for a new machine. I now have a 25 year old Bernina 910, that I love, love, love, but if you have sewn for very long you will know that it does nothing like most of the newer machines do. For a couple of years now I have read all the posts here about all the different machines, I have gone to patternreview.com and I thought I knew what my "dream" machine was, until now, when I really might get one! I went to the Bernina dealer today and I am totally confused. These machines do so much that I am so totally unfamilar with, I don't know if some of the features are something I will want or not, and I don't think I will know until I take the classes(offered after purchase). I don't think I am interested in embroidery, but some advise that I get a machine that it could be added later in case I change my mind. I looked at the 440, 450, 600 series(3 models), 730, and 820 and the new 550 and 580. Some do one thing and not another but the next machine is the opposite, yikes! Since I do love my old Bernina, that is where I started, but I did think(because of the price) that I would look at all the good brands before deciding, but if each brand is this confusing, it will take me a year to decide on a machine!! I guess my first question for any of you that own a Bernina less than the 820-830 is- do you regret not getting a machine with a larger throat space? Since several of the models come with the BSR for machine quilting, I wonder if many people really do much quilting on the machines with the smaller throats. Any advise will be so appreciated!

  9. #34
    Super Member sewingsuz's Avatar
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    I have the 440 QE and it never quits and never gives me any problems. I have had it for 8 years. May of 2006. Before that I bought a Viking and It is still a very good machine.
    Suzanne
    Asking a seamstress to mend is like asking Picasso to paint your garage.

  10. #35
    Super Member feline fanatic's Avatar
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    As you have no intention of getting rid of your 910 and she is still going strong, maybe instead of another sewing machine that does fancy stitches you may want to consider looking at a longarm setup. The cost is comparable to the high end Berninas. I also have the 150QE and she is over 10 YO now and I dread the day she gives up. But I invested in a LA 3 years ago and love it.

  11. #36
    Super Member LynnVT's Avatar
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    I'm a Janome girl and love my 15 year old Memory Craft 9000. Among the reasons I chose it over others was that it is VERY quiet. I sew in the living room and hubby, who helped me choose and paid for it with money he inherited when his mom died, really preferred it so we can watch TV as I sew. I got the embroidery model and really don't use it all that much. Recently, at a guild workshop, I found myself listening to the various machines people had while we all sewed, and sure enough, the one that had a low, not unpleasant tone was another Janome. Their machines are solid, reliable, quiet, and have that easy to handle drop-in bobbin. Mine has a clear cover so you can see how the bobbin is doing, and it also has a low bobbin sensor. It also was half price because they were discontinuing the model, so we got a really good deal. Do consider whether there is a good dealer who services your brand close enough to get to. Lots to consider.

  12. #37
    Power Poster ManiacQuilter2's Avatar
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    I LOVE my old Bernina 1530. I would be in your shoes if I ever need to upgrade. My backup is from the same series so they share feet. Yes, I would like that automatic thread cutter but I quilted my avatar quilt on my Bernina and never needed a wider throat. What makes machine quilting easier is support for a quilt. Good Luck. I HOPE that I never have to make this type of decision.
    A Good Friend, like an old quilt, is both a Treasure and a Comfort

  13. #38
    Super Member running1's Avatar
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    Definitely keep your old machine! My DH gave me the 750QE last year for my birthday. I, too, am not particularly interested in the embroidery add-on... but that could change if my children decide to give me grandchildren!! I love my 750QE... large throat space, the BSR really works, too!!! And the dealer in OKC gives as many mastery classes as you need! very helpful. I kept my old 850 Record (the mechanical 830) and love it, but this new machine is pretty nifty!!!
    "... let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us."

  14. #39
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    I bought my new Bernina 750QE last October, prior to that I owned a Elna SU for 38 years, and a Pfaff serger for 20 years. When my Elna needed an overhaul, I was just thinking about looking into quilting as a new hobby. I LOVE LOVE LOVE my new Bernina 750QE the larger throat, BSR, walking foot, and larger bobbin are absolutely wonderful. The seam binding attachment and foot does a great job and is easy to use! I compare having the larger throat to a good location when buying a house, it's a fundamental decision that makes a big difference. I have not regretted my decision to spend extra money to get it.
    Mother yourself just as you would your own children, you will be surprised how much better you feel...Debbie Marie

  15. #40
    Super Member SewExtremeSeams's Avatar
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    Definitely keep your 930. I still sew with my '70s Bernina 830. I added a Bernina Artista 200E about 4 years ago which I bought used. I spent a lot of $$ taking embroidery classes and 4 years later the features I love the best are a. needle up/down choice b. automatic threader. It FMQs nicely but so does my old 830 model. What a nice birthday present your DH gave you. Do take your time though.

    Linda

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  16. #41
    Senior Member Terri D.'s Avatar
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    Those older Berninas are gems; I don't recommend getting rid of yours! I have heard that the feed dogs on the new, everything-but-the-kitchen-sink Berninas (830, I think) are too far apart to make piecing easy. My recommendation is to test drive whatever the dealer has, take notes, and then go home and think about how you want to approach quilting going forward. Ask yourself if a particular bell or whistle would be a nice-to-have or if you honestly in your heart of hearts ever see yourself using it. The worst thing in the world would be to plunk down a boatload of cash for a machine that does everything and then realize that you don't really need or want half the stuff it can do.

    A newer, but still used, Bernina, like the 440 may be just the thing for you. Newer is not always better. I love my vintage 1990s Bernina.

    Good luck with your decision!

  17. #42
    Super Member Margie's Avatar
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    I have the 830, love it. Big learning curve. Go to the following site, there are mastery classes(scroll down on left side of screen) this will give you some info on it.

    http://exnovodesign.com/830.html
    Margie....wannaBsewer
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    We drew a circle that took him in!

  18. #43
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    I have been following this thread for a couple days because it sparked my interest. Then I started thinking about what features I would want in a new machine. To be honest my priority would be to look for the machine that has the features I use the most and what is on my project bucket list. When I looked at what I have done over the last five years I can see what my trend has been. Looking at my bucket list I also see the trend my quilting is taking. For me the answer became very clear. I want a machine that has lots of built in stitches. As I get older I find that my projects are tending to get smaller with more machine applique done with different fancy stitches. I will be investing my money in what I invest my time in.

  19. #44
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    I just bought the 550 quilters edition and love it!

  20. #45
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    My Bernina is computerized Arista 135, not the best of Bernina I know , but I love it. It has worked great for me for about 12 years. Just had it overhauled, for a small fortune. My tune up guy used to work for Bernina when they were all mechanical, he is not very thrilled with the new computerized BIG, intimidating machines. According to him the huge very expensive new models are in for repairs on average about 3 x the first year. They are still under warranty so the eat up the dealers profit. He no doubt has a bias but I trust him, if I ever get a second machine I'll get an old mechanical Bernina, they are real work horses.
    groovey

  21. #46
    Moderator Jim's Gem's Avatar
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    I have a 630. I love the BSR foot and have quilted at least 100 quilts on this machine. I have even FMQ 'ed a very large King Size quilt on it recently. I have quilted at least a dozen twin size as well as done some easier quilting on about 5 queens. The thing that really helps with quilting is to have a nice sewing desk that your machine can sink into and that can open up to a good size table.
    I hope to someday buy either a long arm or get one of the sit down machines since I have a hard time standing for long. Until then, I will continue to quilt all my quilts on this machine

    I pretty much only use the embroidery module to make my quilt labels.

    If I was going to really "get into" the embroidery, I would get a separate machine so I can still sew while the embroidery unit was running.
    Last edited by Jim's Gem; 05-05-2014 at 09:26 PM.


    My newest Grandson, Caleb Austin, was born May 29th. I am now Grandma to 4 precious babies. I am so blessed!!!!

  22. #47
    Senior Member bigredharley's Avatar
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    If you go with the 820 or 830 be prepared to be frustrated. The bobbin is a pain. It holds more thread, but getting it threaded correctly so it works is challenging. I've had my 820 for 6 months and it's been back to the dealer 3 times. I am a member of a 8's board and the 830 has big problems too. Look at a Brother or Baby Lock. You won't be disappointed.
    Last edited by QuiltnNan; 12-01-2014 at 04:01 AM. Reason: language
    ​Nancy

  23. #48
    Senior Member Sallyjane's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by roselady View Post
    I really never thought this day would come....for my birthday, Oct. 22, my DH suggested that I look for a new machine. I now have a 25 year old Bernina 910, that I love, love, love, but if you have sewn for very long you will know that it does nothing like most of the newer machines do. For a couple of years now I have read all the posts here about all the different machines, I have gone to patternreview.com and I thought I knew what my "dream" machine was, until now, when I really might get one! I went to the Bernina dealer today and I am totally confused. These machines do so much that I am so totally unfamilar with, I don't know if some of the features are something I will want or not, and I don't think I will know until I take the classes(offered after purchase). I don't think I am interested in embroidery, but some advise that I get a machine that it could be added later in case I change my mind. I looked at the 440, 450, 600 series(3 models), 730, and 820 and the new 550 and 580. Some do one thing and not another but the next machine is the opposite, yikes! Since I do love my old Bernina, that is where I started, but I did think(because of the price) that I would look at all the good brands before deciding, but if each brand is this confusing, it will take me a year to decide on a machine!! I guess my first question for any of you that own a Bernina less than the 820-830 is- do you regret not getting a machine with a larger throat space? Since several of the models come with the BSR for machine quilting, I wonder if many people really do much quilting on the machines with the smaller throats. Any advise will be so appreciated!
    I see this is an old thread. I just curious what you ended up buying? I have the Bernina 820 and love it. But it is a bear to haul to classes and retreats. Now I am looking for something lighter, but I am spoiled! I still want my duel feed and BSR!
    Blessings!
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  24. #49
    Senior Member bigredharley's Avatar
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    run, don't walk away from the 820!
    ​Nancy

  25. #50
    Super Member Onebyone's Avatar
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    I have different machines for different jobs. None very expensive so you may want to buy several new machines instead of one very expensive one. The one machine that beats the top of the line fancy machines for fmq and machine quilting is the Brother 1500 or the Juki. The Brother is about $600. I would get one of these in addition to any other machine I decided on.
    I love my life!

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