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Recommendations for Brother (or Babylock?) machine for classes

Recommendations for Brother (or Babylock?) machine for classes

Old 09-09-2019, 04:21 AM
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Default Recommendations for Brother (or Babylock?) machine for classes

I have the Brother VQ3000 and love it, but it’s soooo big and heavy that I hesitate to drag it to a class or retreat. Now that we’ve moved to WI there actually ARE classes/retreats I might want to go to!

Since I have a fair amount invested in feet for my VQ3000, if I get a portable machine I’d like to be able to use them on it. Thus my question—anyone have and love their reasonably portable smaller Brother/Babylock machine? If so, which one and why?

Thanks in advance.
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Old 09-09-2019, 04:47 AM
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I have a small brothers SE-350 that I bought at Walmart years ago that I use to go out to quilty things with. Once a month I go to our Sit & Sew and if I need to bring it to a Guild meeting or to teach my DGD a sewing lesson it goes with me. It fits easily into my travel bag and did not cost a great deal either. I know the models have changed over the years but I figured I did not want to invest to much in a machine that little hands would be using. I don't take the embroidery attachment with me when I go out unless I have a specific plan for it. It travels lightly too.
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Old 09-09-2019, 08:54 AM
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I am a big fan of the lower end Brother machines. I have several of them and they are not fussy with thread and have a nice stitch. Mine have worked for me straight out of the box.
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Old 09-09-2019, 09:01 AM
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I'm another fan of the cheap Brothers for classes. One of the nice thing about (most) Brothers is the feet are interchangeable. They are basic and easy to use, even low end ones have threading assists.

My first one lasted for around 7 years of pretty heavy use and hard treatment. Started having issues with the bobbin casing. It was the Costco machine from that time, here's the current offer from them:
https://www.costco.com/Brother-XR334...100421876.html

My current portable Brother is super low end, got it at the thrift store for something like $20. It is a Brother 2230 and it is just fine for classes, does everything I want. Happens this machine (maybe why it was in the thrift store) had issues with the bobbin winder, so I bought a portable one and everything is just fine.

The downside of the 2230 is it does not have an integrated case, I carry it in the box. The previous one had an integrated case that fit over the machine with a hand opening, that was better than nothing but if I was going to go to a lot of classes, I'd be looking for a case with some sort of locking/shutting function.
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Old 09-09-2019, 09:01 AM
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I agree with this. I have had lower end and something in the higher end and the lower end machines are work hogs! I have worn out 2 of them and even traded a quilt one time for a new machine! Perfect for travel as I said before.
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Old 09-09-2019, 09:21 AM
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I have one of the Walmart brothers with all the feet for quilting and I love it. I bought it as a back up machine but now use it for almost everything.
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Old 09-09-2019, 09:42 AM
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I have a Brother SQ9285, from Wal Mart, that I pack up and use,and I think it is a very good machine. It came with all the feet, plus fmq and walking foot.
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Old 09-09-2019, 07:09 PM
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I have a Brother CS6000i at our winter home. Nice little machine. Available on Amazon for $150. It has done all I need, although I can’t master the autothreader.
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Old 09-09-2019, 09:47 PM
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I bought a Brother Project Runway (forget which model number, but computerized) for $75 for my DIL a few years ago--brand new in box, yard sale deal. She loves it and has made a few baby quilts.

I also bought a $20 Brother (mechanical) at a thrift store and it's dandy. I ended up with too many machines at home, so I took this one to my sister's house in KY. When I'm there, I have pulled it out to work on quilts and I made curtains for her. I'd say for classes get one that's light enough to carry and easy on your wallet.
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Old 09-10-2019, 03:09 AM
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I have a Babylock Anna for traveling. It's able to do anything I need within reason & any of the Babylock or Brother feet fit it. I used to drive an 18-wheeler & took my machine on the road with me & sewed at the local quilt shop on my regular route, so it traveled well.
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