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

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

Old 05-03-2014, 01:47 PM
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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!
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Old 05-03-2014, 03:37 PM
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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.

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Old 05-03-2014, 03:40 PM
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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.
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Old 05-05-2014, 04:56 AM
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I just bought the 550 quilters edition and love it!
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Old 05-05-2014, 08:43 PM
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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.
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Old 05-05-2014, 09:22 PM
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Camarillo, California
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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.

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

Last edited by Jim's Gem; 05-05-2014 at 09:26 PM.
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Old 05-07-2014, 03:30 AM
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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
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Old 10-07-2014, 11:44 AM
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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!
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Old 10-07-2014, 11:46 AM
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run, don't walk away from the 820!
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Old 10-07-2014, 01:47 PM
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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.
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