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Thread: Question on advantage of sewing cabinet that recesses the machine

  1. #1
    Junior Member grandma nurse's Avatar
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    Question on advantage of sewing cabinet that recesses the machine

    I am looking at a new sewing cabinet so my sewing machine will recess down and be flush with the top of the cabinet. As I sew now my machine sits 4 inches higher on the cabinet top. What I want to know is: will I be less tired at the end of the sewing day and will my seams be more consistent with an even surface. I guess I want to know if anyone has noticed a difference in the ease of their sewing with the change.

  2. #2
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    I have enough room on my extension table to sew well. What a recessed machine wold give me is more ease with my FMQ. When FMQ a quilt, it gets hung up on the extension table or has too much drag. My son is going to recess my machine for me in the fall and I am looking forward to it.

  3. #3
    Junior Member grandma nurse's Avatar
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    When I was piecing my king size quilt I had problems with it getting hung up on the extension table as well. That was one of the reasons I have decided that a new cabinet with a recess feature would be nice.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Scraplady's Avatar
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    I finally took the plunge and cut a hole in my table that I've been using as a sewing table for years. Got DH to help me cut it and build a shelf to go under it and hold the machine. I wish I had done it eons ago. For me the difference is not just that the quilt doesn't drag on the corners of the table, but even with my adjustable chair as high as it would go I was reaching UP to the level of the machine and my shoulders would ache by the end of an afternoon doing FMQ. And having my chair that high was putting pressure on my legs and causing my feet and ankles to swell.

    I did some research and supposedly the most ergonomic position for sitting and sewing is for your both your feet and knees to make a nearly perfect 90 degree angle. Your SM should be at a height where your elbows also make a 90 degree angle when your hands are lying flat on the bed of the machine. The change has made a world of difference to me.
    www.makeminepatchwork.etsy.com
    "Piecin' a quilt's like livin' a life...The Lord sends us the pieces, but we can cut 'em out and put 'em together pretty much to suit ourselves, and there's a heap more in the cuttin' and the sewin' than there is in the caliker...I've had a heap of comfort all my life making quilts, and now in my old age I wouldn't take a fortune for them." (Eliza Calvert Hall, Aunt Jane of Kentucky)

  5. #5
    Power Poster earthwalker's Avatar
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    I managed to find a Horn sewing cabinet second hand....it has the very cool adjustable bit for the machine. It has made a really big difference for me to have the machine flush with the work surface....far less of a struggle, and more room for quilts to spread out, plus a nice slippery surface so nothing gets caught up.

  6. #6
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    I have done a lot of sewing both ways and would definitely recommend the recessed way if at all possible. Also the heavier table the better to prevent vibration.

  7. #7
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    My husband built my sewing table. 8 foot by 4 foot, he cut a well for my sewing machine, and I love it!! Especially for FMQing and sewing on bindings. No drag at all, and much easier on my back and shoulders. I really appreciate it after taking my machine to classes where it just sits on a table and is so much higher. Always so happy to get back home and put it back in the well!!

  8. #8
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    I like having my machine even with the table - makes sewing much easier, more accurate and I'm not as tired after sewing all day.

  9. #9
    Senior Member Sally J's Avatar
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    I also have a Horn. It's wonderful, you can order a plexiglass insert for you machine on the internet. You just measure you opening(older Horn's have a different size) and you machine model. It does make a different when piecing the blocks together and quilting. I would be lost without it

  10. #10
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    Ask the salesperson where you are purchasing your cabinet and see if they make an insert for your machine. I purchased my cabinet from my Bernina dealer, and they had the insert for my machine, which was included in the price of the cabinet.

  11. #11
    Power Poster dunster's Avatar
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    To answer your question, yes, it makes a huge difference, whether you're piecing or quilting.

  12. #12
    Super Member SueSew's Avatar
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    I find the height difference makes it more comfortable for me. And I think that sewing on a smooth surface makes it easier to get the material under the needle just where you want it, not having to shuffle so much.
    SueSew
    "If it's messy, eat it over the sink!" Mom

  13. #13
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    I also have a Horn cabinet and love that the machine is level with the top--however--I had to remove the casters from the cabinet because it is too high to sew comfortably even with an adjustable chair. You might want to sit in front of the cabinet to check for that also.

  14. #14
    Super Member newbee3's Avatar
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    you will have less stress on your shoulders and neck and yes even your back you will probably be less tired

  15. #15
    Super Member Lori S's Avatar
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    I have an old singer that is cabinet mounted.....and a newer machine is that is not . I love that old singer as the cabinet mounted ( machine flush with table) has so much more working surface. The machine that sits above the table does have a bit more height and my back does not ach so much after hours of sewing... so I finally smartened up and raised up the cabinet using wood. Each of us has a different height that is ergonomically better so play around to figure out the right height for you.

  16. #16
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    Love having my machine and table top the same. I also was lucky to find a Horn cabinet on Craigslist, then have ordered the insert on line. It is just a lot more comfortable!

  17. #17
    Super Member running1's Avatar
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    It has made sewing/piecing/quilting a LOT easier for me... It is important to measure for you and your height...
    "... let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us."

  18. #18
    Moderator Jim's Gem's Avatar
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    I have a desk where the machine recesses into it. It will be so much easier to use as well as easier on your back and shoulders to have it at a correct height.


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

  19. #19
    Super Member AliKat's Avatar
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    As long as the height of the machine, the height of your chair, and the height of your body are such that it is ergonomic you will enjoy quilting. I do have a cabinet with a hydraulic lift. When I sew the machine is flush with the cabinet so I don't need an extension table.

    Also I can put the machine away very easily and it serves as an bedside table for any guest, as my daybed has been shortened and fits under my quilting machine. It also looks neater when I have a party. I definitely do not want anyone 'playing' with my machine.
    Have fun quilting! If it isn't fun, you will miss a lot.
    ali

  20. #20
    Junior Member grandma nurse's Avatar
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    Thank you for all of your reply's. I think I will make a phone call tomorrow and buy me a new sewing cabinet.

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