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Thoughts about Berninas

Thoughts about Berninas

Old 03-20-2023, 10:27 AM
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I have owned 6 Bernina machines. The first was a 440 with the bsr....I traded it in for the 630 which I used for a long, long, time. Then I got a Bernina 570 which had decent reviews, but I seriously think mine was a lemon, it kept giving me bird's nest in the bobbin area and they happened just out of now where. So I traded it in for a 590 and was a bit worried about it but after a fairly steep learning curve, I am loving the 590. I also picked up a Bernina 215 red machine which is a very simple Bernina but I was going to use that for classes as it weighs less just before covid, well, I got used to the easy of doing a quarter inch seam on the 215 which has a narrow feed dog and I was still fiddling with getting a nice 1/4 inch seam on the 590 so I bought a Bernina 475 with the 5.5 mm feed dogs (had more of the bells and whistle which I had grown accustomed too with the 630 and 590). Love that machine too. OH, I recently think I have finely mastered my 1/4 inch seam on the 590 by using my regular foot and moving the needle position over 4 clicks. Ha, so now I have 3 Bernina's that I love and all are fairly new. Was it the Covid lockdown????? Anyway, I should be set for now. Oh, and somehow I also got a Viking Topaz 40 that came during the frustration with the 570. I like that machine too! Hopefully all four will never be in the shop at the same time and I really haven't had any problems with them this past year. I really am loving the Bernina's but have to admit, they are Diva's and there is a learning curve to them, once mastered, they purr like kittens. The learning curve goes up with the fancier the machine. The little 215 was pretty simple. I don't think they are making the 2 series anymore, but they have 3 series that is also nice.

Last edited by sewingpup; 03-20-2023 at 10:33 AM.
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Old 03-20-2023, 10:50 AM
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Originally Posted by cashs_mom View Post
I'm a Bernina girl. I've had 5 Bernina sewing machines (I have 3 currently) and a Bernina serger. I love Berninas especially for making bags and clothing. Nothing like a Bernina for doing the hard stuff. I have used the sit down machine, but it's probably awesome. Most Berninas are.
Oops. That should have said "I haven't used the sit down machine". I really need to proof read better.
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Old 03-23-2023, 04:55 PM
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Sorry to respond late, but I agree with the recommendation to look at HandiQuilter. They have both 16” and 20” sit downs at a better price than Bernina. I dearly, dearly love my Bernina sewing machines, but their newer products are too picky. for use in long arms. You want a machine with online support, not just a dealer, and you want to use strong, professional round needles not the domestic flat back needles. Tension on a pro-style long arm isn’t automatic, but once you figure out how to do it you open up an entire world of threads. I have used everything from 80 weight invisible to 50 wt poly to 40 wt embroidery to 30 wt specialty threads to Metallica. You just can’t do that with automatic tension.
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Old 03-23-2023, 06:14 PM
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I use a Bernina 1260 and love this machine. It cannot be repaired if the motherboard goes out but it's decades old and still sewing great. I don't baby it at all and never have. I won't buy a new Bernina, I have sewed on all the new ones and they aren't like they use to be after using the 1260. Bernette is made by Brother but at different standard then Brother and Babylock. Each brand has their own standards the manufacturer follows from the company. The Bernina dealer here has the Bernina long arms and sit down machine. I have tried out the sit down version and it was nice. Picky about thread is what a customer told me that had one and the sensors can be finicky over the smallest thing.

Last edited by Onebyone; 03-23-2023 at 06:17 PM.
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Old 03-24-2023, 05:55 AM
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: columbia , MO
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I have a q20 sit down and love it!! I tried all the sit down machines and the Bernina was the best !! I do have a bernette 79 and am having troubles with it. The automatic thread cutter keeps going off My foot has to be in an exact place when sewing. I took it back to be serviced and worked great for awhile, it is back to its old tricks. I would not buy another one again!!
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Old 03-24-2023, 06:01 AM
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I would always go Bernina if i could. But their long arm is up there$! After a class, i went with a HandiQuilter Amara and absolutely love it! I do have two Bernina sew machines!!! And yes you will always find better deals through a quilt show or class at a shop!
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Old 03-25-2023, 03:15 AM
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Ok. The Bernina 16Q is on sale for $6400. How much should discount be for shop's demo, which is still brand new? I haven't bought a new machine in 40 years!
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Old 03-25-2023, 05:04 AM
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Originally Posted by aashley333 View Post
Ok. The Bernina 16Q is on sale for $6400. How much should discount be for shop's demo, which is still brand new? I haven't bought a new machine in 40 years!
I think the discount for the demo really varies among shop owners. Shop owners look at a number of factors like how long has the demo been a demo and how many stitches are on it? Is it a demo for a model that is being discontinued and replaced by a newer version? Some shop owners like to rotate the demo periodically, so the demo doesn't end up with a ton of stitches on it. The last Bernina demo I bought. still had some of the packaging on it as they had just put it out and I think I was the second person to look at it and give it a stitch out. They didn't give me anything off on it. If I hadn't taken it and waited for the "still in the box" one, I would have had to wait a bit longer as that one was in another shop 120 miles away. If I don't get a discount, I usually try for at least an accessory. I did get one with my new demo! Ha, the best "accessory" I got with a new machine was a serger! I went in to look at machines and bought me first top of the line one at the time. A Viking D1! I just got home and shop called and said "you forgot your serger". I said "what serger?" The shop owner said the one that was part of the promotion deal with the Viking D1" Oh my! The D1's screen or motherboard went out 2 years ago after many, many years of usage. It paid for itself several times over in my opinion. RIP! The serger is still here, serging was never my passion but I have used the machine and it is a basic serger with not many bells and whistles and probably will last for years yet. I did replace the knifes on it one time.
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Old 03-25-2023, 06:18 AM
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Based on the price, it looks like you are shopping for a Q16 on the Adjustable Table. By the way, I think it is a good price as the Black Friday deal last year was about $100 more.

One of the reasons that Bernina can offer such an attractive price is that an upgraded model, the Q16 Plus, was introduced about a year ago. It is the same size as the Q16, but can be mounted on the Bernina Studio frame, where it then has additional capabilities. So my first advice is to make sure that you will never want a frame, because you will have to replace both the sewhead and purchase the frame.

Next, make sure that the “adjustable” table adjusts to the right height for you. I think there are only 2 or 3 options.

Also, be aware that it doesn’t seem like most owners fold down their adjustable tables to the 9” width for storage very often. The machine and table are just too bulky to stow away quickly after every use.

If you haven’t owned a Bernina before, be aware that every accessory you may need or want is also expensive.

I’m sharing all this not to talk you out of it, but to make sure you go in with your eyes open. I spent several months looking into the machine before I bought. I am very happy with my Q20 on a lift table.

Finally, if you buy, try to take advantage of a dealer education class. Bernina is doing a series of StitchWise events right now with hands on use of the sit down machines. You can find some of the dates here: https://www.bernina.com/en-US/Learn-...lever-Quilting
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Old 03-25-2023, 07:44 AM
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Can I just say that as in every line, there are good models and...not so good models.

The older Berninas were well built, solid precision machines, dependable. I have an Artista 170 I bought second hand years ago and it is my piecing workhorse. I just had to add supplementary lighting.

Demo, demo, demo, and get onto Facebook user pages to ask questions!
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