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Thread: Where do you place your sewing machine on the table?

  1. #1
    Super Member SueSew's Avatar
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    Do you have something it sits in under the table height so that you have a flat surface?

    If so, does your machine sit right at the front edge of the table or set back? Does it bump your knees? How far back should it sit from the edge of the table?

    I am going to ask DH to cut into the large oak desk I use for my sewing table and make a cutout and shelf for the machine to sit in, but I am not sure how far back it should set from the edge of the table.

    Thanks for the ideas!

  2. #2
    Super Member Grama Lehr's Avatar
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    What ever you do, make sure that you have a place on the left hand side of your machine to hold up your fabric as you sew. Leave some room on the right for notions and such!

  3. #3
    Moderator kathy's Avatar
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    i think generaly there is about 4" from the front edge of the table to the machine but i would sew at different spaces and see what feels best for you and yes it should be mostly to the right so you have the most space on the left, the tray should give you plenty room to sit comfortably without banging your knees

  4. #4
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    Power Poster np3's Avatar
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    I'm not fussy. I can use any table. And I can adjust my chair.

  5. #5
    Super Member crafty pat's Avatar
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    I have my singer in a cabinet my brother is on a table I can Raise or lower. I have a roller chair that fits so my legs are just under both. I can pull the one on the table closer to me which I like better as I am short and see better. I have to bend forward more with the singer which is hard on my back.

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    Power Poster Lacelady's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Grama Lehr
    What ever you do, make sure that you have a place on the left hand side of your machine to hold up your fabric as you sew. Leave some room on the right for notions and such!
    The leading edge of my machine is about 3in back from the leading edge of the table. This give me somewhere to rest my forearms when FMQing (which will be a LOT easier when you have the machine level with the table). Place your machine almost all the way to the right of your table/desk to allow for having the quilt on the left.

    You can buy surrounds for almost any machine from SewEzi who make a folding table, which might be easier than making your own.

  7. #7
    Senior Member jean1941's Avatar
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    Just set it different place and see what is best for you and then mark the spot

  8. #8
    Power Poster amma's Avatar
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    If you are worried about it bumping your knees, you could make a cardboard box the same size as the box your machine will sit it. Tape it to the bottom of the table and see if it will be in the way of your knees :D:D:D

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    I;ll be following this as I am going to do the same thing

  10. #10
    Senior Member SharBear's Avatar
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    also, if you have a knee lift for your pressor foot you need to take that into account as well. I know that my Bernina has to be about 3 or 4 inches MAX from the table edge when I'm using the knee lift.

  11. #11
    Super Member frarose's Avatar
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    Probably the 4" is a good guide as that is about how far from the edge my knee lift is.

  12. #12
    Super Member amyjo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by crafty pat
    I have my singer in a cabinet my brother is on a table I can Raise or lower. I have a roller chair that fits so my legs are just under both. I can pull the one on the table closer to me which I like better as I am short and see better. I have to bend forward more with the singer which is hard on my back.
    tip your machine forward so you don't have to lean forward so much. Much better to see also. You might have to experiment on how high you lift it in the back. Really like mine that way. less stress.

  13. #13
    Power Poster blueangel's Avatar
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    I use mine on a table that works fine for me.

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    Does your machine also embroider? Does it convert to a free arm for other uses?

  15. #15
    Super Member mom-6's Avatar
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    The vintage sewing machine cabinets that I have leave about 3 - 4 inches from the front edge before the opening for the machine. And 4 - 6 inches from the right hand side. The cover that becomes the left hand extension varies but I would guess averages around 24 inches.

  16. #16
    Super Member mom-6's Avatar
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    The vintage sewing machine cabinets that I have leave about 3 - 4 inches from the front edge before the opening for the machine. And 4 - 6 inches from the right hand side. The cover that becomes the left hand extension varies but I would guess averages around 24 inches.

  17. #17
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    You need to place it where it is most comfortable FOR YOU. People w/short forearms probably need their machine in a different position than a person w/long forearms might need it.

    Place it in different positions to sew awhile & see which you feel most comfortable with. :lol:

  18. #18
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    My first response was "on top of" -
    especially when I want to use one of them.

    (That's because I had three of them under a table/desk for a while waiting to get repaired)

    I've found that it's more comfortable for me to set a portable machine on what used to be known as a "typewriter table"

    It's two to three inches lower/shorter than desk height and it's easier for me to control the fabric when the work surface is
    "lower."

  19. #19
    Senior Member fatquarters's Avatar
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    I noticed that when sitting at mine, and I have a desk, that the needle has to be right in front of me or I am kinda twisting. When you are at a desk your chair can't go left and right, so make sure that the needle isn't too much to your left that you need to twist your body or crank your neck

  20. #20
    Super Member SueSew's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TanyaL
    Does your machine also embroider? Does it convert to a free arm for other uses?
    I don't embroider yet but the machine has those clever little pattern stitches. It's a Janome 3160? portable so it is stationary.

    Mainly I've been quilting with it and just started FMQ which is why I want to level the machine on the table.

    If I use the machine for embroidery is there
    a restriction of space because of the hoop?

    I'm worried that if I cut into that desk and it is wrong I will never hear the end of it!

  21. #21
    Super Member miss_ticky2's Avatar
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    Hi

    Here's a link to the one my hubby did. The knee lift isn't fitted in these pics, but he's since fitted it and it's fine.
    The needle is 11" back from the edge of the table for me. I sat so the machine was a comfortable distance and this seems to be ok. Wouldn't want it any further away...and even could be an inch closer maybe, but it's not a problem.
    And no, I don't bump my knees at all.

    http://www.quiltingboard.com/t-76568-1.htm

  22. #22
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    I have a Brother that embroiders. The embroidering unit has its own computer and attaches onto the machine, also holds the hoops. If I cut a hole in my sewing table so that my machine sewing surface were level with the top of the table I would not be able to attach the embroider unit. Likewise, I would not be able to disengage the part that lets me have a free arm for that type of sewing. Basically I would drastically limit what my machine could do if I cut a hole in the table and sank the machine down a few inches, and I paid a few thousand dollars to have this machine and all it could do.

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    Quote Originally Posted by amyjo
    Quote Originally Posted by crafty pat
    I have my singer in a cabinet my brother is on a table I can Raise or lower. I have a roller chair that fits so my legs are just under both. I can pull the one on the table closer to me which I like better as I am short and see better. I have to bend forward more with the singer which is hard on my back.
    tip your machine forward so you don't have to lean forward so much. Much better to see also. You might have to experiment on how high you lift it in the back. Really like mine that way. less stress.

    I have 2 rubber door stops that I sometimes use on the back of my machines to tip them forward. It is so much easier to see your work and much easier on the back, also. Marge L.

  24. #24
    Super Member SueSew's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by miss_ticky2
    Hi

    Here's a link to the one my hubby did. The knee lift isn't fitted in these pics, but he's since fitted it and it's fine.
    The needle is 11" back from the edge of the table for me. I sat so the machine was a comfortable distance and this seems to be ok. Wouldn't want it any further away...and even could be an inch closer maybe, but it's not a problem.
    And no, I don't bump my knees at all.

    http://www.quiltingboard.com/t-76568-1.htm
    That is a beautiful table! Wow. But how do you turn it on and off and plug it in?
    Onmy Janome the plug-ins and the switch are on the lower right side of the machine. That may be a big nono.

  25. #25
    Super Member patchsamkim's Avatar
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    I am another Bernina owner...and as someone else mentioned, with the knee lift, your machine can only be a few inches from the edge of the table if you are sewing without your machine in a cabinet. When I am sewing in my cabinet, my machine is more like 5" from the edge of the table, and I like that better. Also best to make sure your sewing chair is centered in front of the needle of the machine, not the machine itself. I used to teach classes, and it was may times that I suggested that students moved their chairs to the left so they were centered in front of the needle...and they were amazed at the difference.

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