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Thread: Quilting frames for long or mid arm machines....need advice

  1. #1
    Super Member justflyingin's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Jozefow, Poland

    Quilting frames for long or mid arm machines....need advice

    What is the brand you have?

    Did it come with your long arm and what are some pros and cons of what you've used or seen. I'm a newbie when it comes to frames as I just have a DSM (domestic sewing machine) but my husband is starting to look into them for me...but I think he wants to do some research and we have no idea what brands are the best.

  2. #2
    Super Member alleyoop1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    I have a Bernina frame made by Grace Company and I use my Bernina 440 on it. I have approx. 5" of quilting space. My frame is large enough to do a king size quilt but I can take it apart and set it up to be 6' wide instead if I want to do that. I would recommend that you go to a shop or quilt show and see what is available, try out different machines on frames. If you just want a frame, shop around and check out used frames. If you want new, look at Grace Company. They are the Cadillac of frames.

  3. #3
    Power Poster Prism99's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Western Wisconsin
    Blog Entries
    What brand/model of DSM are you planning to use on the frame? The carriages for a short arm vs longarm would be different.

    I have a midarm machine (Voyager 17) on a Hinterberg stretch frame. This is a great beginner frame if you have a shortarm because you can use a shortarm on it and then, if you upgrade to a midarm such as the Voyager, you don't have to change the frame. This frame is wood.

    Ideally you want to buy a longarm together with its frame at the same time, as many high-end machines are made to work with a specific frame.

    If you or your husband is handy with tools and wood, you might want to make your own frame to save money. There are directions and parts on eBay for a freestanding frame (and carriages available for both shortarm and longarm). Also, there is a relatively inexpensive table frame kit available (about $250 for the kit, I think).

    I can post links for the frame kits if you are interested.

  4. #4
    Super Member quilts4charity's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Albany, Georgia
    I have the super quilter frame. It's made of wood and you use metal conduit for the bars. I used a Juki with a 9" throat then upgraded to an Innovis 18" throat on the same frame. Works great for me, I did install myself a dead bar so I could quit adjusting as I quilted, I have arthritis in my hands and it was a pain!!!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    I have a Gracie King frame which can be set up as crib, queen or king. The craftsmanship is wonderful and the instructions were excellent. I use a Brother PQ1500S on the frame and quilted a queen size one it with no problem other than as you roll the quilt the rows get narrower. Going to try loading the quilt side to side rather than top to bottom next time. I am considering upgrading to an 18" machine and want to keep my frame because I like it so much.

  6. #6
    Power Poster ckcowl's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Northern Michigan
    Blog Entries
    long arms have specific frames for them---the machine is on a carriage which is on tracks- they are seldom interchangeable- a gammil machine uses a gammil frame, an HQ machine uses HQ frames- the tracks, carriages, wheels are designed to run on a specific set up- domestic/some mid-arm frames can be used by different machines- if you visit dealers, shows, workshops you can generally try out different brands/types and see what works out for you- I have a 'home made' table but a frame from the dealer for my long-arm- the tracks/bars/frame came with clamps and very good diagrams/instructions for setting up on my own table. I've been using it for 10 years and am now looking to purchase a 'real' studio frame/table for my set up.
    hiding away in my stash where i'm warm, safe and happy

  7. #7
    Super Member newbee3's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Central Iowa
    Blog Entries
    I have a nustyle 18" long arm and 12 foot nustyle frame

  8. #8
    Senior Member Tashana's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Long Island
    I have a Gracie Majestic frame and I love it!!! It is steel construction and it glides beautifully!

  9. #9
    Super Member Farm Quilter's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Odessa, Washington
    I have an 18" Innova made by ABM International in Houston, Texas. It came with a fabulous frame that I was able to put together by myself. It it strong enough that I can sit on the table on the back of it when I am frogging a quilt (like to remove stitches from the back side unless it is just a few inches, less chance of messing up the front of a quilt). I really like that it has a dead bar so my quilting area is always flat and I don't have to constantly move my take-up bar as my quilt grows on there as I quilt. Love the Pro-Frame (and my Innova)!!!

  10. #10
    Power Poster mighty's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Upland CA
    I have a Babylock Crown Jewel on a Pearl Frame, Love Love Love it!!!!

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