Is this machine worth fixing?

Old 11-25-2011, 06:53 PM
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Unhappy Is this machine worth fixing?

This is the best place I've ever been to get the answers I need for a problem I have.. hope you can all help me with this one.

My DH was given a Bernina 810 mini-matic machine after she lost her home and belongings in the Joplin tornado. She sent the machine over to me because I'm pretty good at fixing sewing machines. The machine needs a new gear in the top of the machine, (it's plastic and split, but the part is available) that I think I can replace myself without a lot of trouble.

The problem is this. The machine came with only one of the feet, and it's not suitable for straight stitch/zig-zag sewing. I've been looking on the net and I can find the old style feet for sale, but they are about $20 +/- each. Does anyone have extra old style feet, or know where they can be bought without spending a lot? Just to get the basic feet would be a good deal of money for her at this time. Is it worth the trouble to fix this old Bernina, or should we just pass it on and wait until she can find something else?

She needs a good machine but doesn't have money right now to invest. Why do people donate something that has to be fixed to people who have lost everything? good grief.

Thanks, Judie
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Old 11-25-2011, 09:14 PM
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Oops.. I said my DH.. I hope you figured out that what I meant was my DD!! We call that sort of goofy slip "tornado brain" around here.. all of us who lost our homes have also lost a lot of our brain power it seems. I even proof read my post and missed that.

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Old 11-25-2011, 09:31 PM
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I'd forget about fixing it, and put the money you would spend buying parts and feet for it, towards a machine that works - even if it is a reconditioned one from a dealer. To me, you are just throwing money away trying to fix it, and who knows what else you will find is wrong when you start pulling it apart.

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Old 11-25-2011, 10:14 PM
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I'd let it go. If Goodwill is still in town, they will repair it and resale it. You also might be able to find a good machine that
works at Goodwill for about $50 or less.
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Old 11-26-2011, 12:20 AM
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I don't know whether you should try to fix it, but I wanted to let you know that I have not seen the old style feet for less than $20.00 anywhere. That's the cheapest. I have a Bernina 1530 that uses the old style feet and my local dealer charges almost double that for feet I buy there.
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Old 11-26-2011, 06:14 AM
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If you can fix the broken gear, that would be great. Berninas are really incredible machines, and the older models like yours are known for their excellent stitches.

Have you considered buying an adapter so that it can use generic feet? They are available at lots of places, eBay being one of them, and then you could see how the machine works before investing in specific Bernina feet. I would bet that after you try out the machine, you will want to invest in feet for her.

By the way, you can go to the Bernina website, and look up the number of the foot that came with the machine, to see what the purpose was.

Good luck--I love my Bernina.
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Old 11-26-2011, 06:57 AM
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I wouldn't throw it away. Keep it, things may show up later along the way.
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Old 11-26-2011, 07:09 AM
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Berninas are great machines. That said, I do repair vintage sewing machines, and if someone gave it to me, I would replace the gear, give it a good general service, and buy the feet as they became available. Yes, feet are around $20 each used, but that's normal. Once repaired, this will give many years of service long past what you would get from a cheap plastic $150 machine from a department store. Put the money you'd spend on that cheap machine into the repair & rehab of this machine; it will be money well spent.
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Old 11-26-2011, 07:10 AM
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Would try other brands of feet. They may work for you. My grandmother White treadle machine feet work on my Kenmore machine. I would go that route if possible. Old machine stitches are just great.
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Old 11-26-2011, 07:20 AM
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An Adaptor!! That's a great idea! I knew that someone here would have a good idea. Thank you.

I'm one of those that just hates to throw away something that can be fixed. I've had the machine apart and everything else is good... even the belts seem to be in find shape. I'm thinking this one gear that's split may just have gotten dried out, everything was dry as a desert, and dirty. I tried turning the wheel by hand when I first got it home, everything was stiff as could be.. Once it was cleaned and the moving parts oiled it moves smoothly and runs fine, just needs that one gear fixed.

I'm thinking I'll fix that gear, get an adaptor for it and a few generic feet, after all, it's a Bernina.. has it's pretty cherry red case and my DH was able to print off the book for it... Sounds like it may be worth the trouble after all.

(our Good Will was blown into a million pieces.. very sad)
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