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hello, newbie, looking for quilting machine purchase help

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    #16
    Re: hello, newbie, looking for quilting machine purchase help

    Originally posted by GuitarGramma View Post
    I was at a demo day at our local Sewing Super Store where we got to try out lots of different features on lots of different machines. A store employee would demo each feature/machine/foot and then would let you try it. At one Bernina station, they ended the demo by telling the price of the foot for the Bernina—which was well over $100. I had the Janome version of that foot, and it had only cost me $30. This was the day I promised myself I would never buy a Bernina! (P.S. I do love my two Janome machines!)
    Oh, I don't know if I can agree with this. I've sewn on Janomes and was not that impressed. This Bernina I recently got is pretty slick. Sure, I bought it used at a steal, but I love it.

    It all boils down to what you like, and that is the brand machine you should get. I still strongly suggest you try the Juki TL2010...I think you'd be impressed.
    pat.

    No rain....no rainbows!


    sigpic

    If you can't be nice.....BE QUIET!

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      #17
      Re: hello, newbie, looking for quilting machine purchase help

      Originally posted by bubba View Post
      Oh, I don't know if I can agree with this. I've sewn on Janomes and was not that impressed. This Bernina I recently got is pretty slick. Sure, I bought it used at a steal, but I love it.

      It all boils down to what you like, and that is the brand machine you should get. I still strongly suggest you try the Juki TL2010...I think you'd be impressed.
      Well, we definitely agree on the Juki!

      I was just trying to give Babsy a heads up that the cost of accessories is much higher in the Bernina world. I didn't mean to disparage Bernina machines, just the higher cost!
      Toni ... If I keep sewing long enough, will they make their own dinner?

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        #18
        Re: hello, newbie, looking for quilting machine purchase help

        Originally posted by Babsy View Post
        Thank you all for the replies! It is so helpful to be able to hear all your opinions/advice and experiences.

        Some clarification:
        Yes, I am thinking of getting a machine that will allow both piecing the tops as well as machine quilting. I am new to the correct terminology, I'm afraid. Please forgive me as I endeavour to learn the correct quilting lingo. I have looked at Angela Walters and would like a machine that will allow me to use those. My current Bernette has a very small 'throat' so it could be cumbersome to manage a larger quilt. (I'll be finding out in the next few days when I sandwich my quilt together for quilting - the top is almost all pieced and sewn together now.)

        I would also like something a bit wider in the area from the needle to the side. Finally, my machine doesn't have a walking foot or a 1/4 inch foot. So, there are a number of issues with my current machine that are giving me some headaches. I would rather purchase a more suitable machine than start buying a lot of extras for my current model. It was a gift, so I will keep it to use for other smaller sewing projects and as a 'travelling' machine to take to classes, etc.

        I am currently looking at a Janome Memory Craft 6700 or a Janome Horizon 8200. I can get either for under $2000 and they seem to be good machines suited to piecing/quilting. I have been to the local stores in my area and the brands available to me locally seem to be Brother, Bernina, Janome, Singer and Bernette.

        Thank you again for your helpful replies. Any further thoughts/advcie are greatly appreciated!
        I would choose the 6700 over the 8200. I know the 8200 has a longer harp, but the 6700 is a stronger machine. I think they both have walking foot type feet built in. I have had the 6600 and an 8900, so I am basing my recommendation on using both of those. Right now, I am using a clone of the Janome 1600. The newest version of that ( straight stitch only) is the HD9. This machine tackles ANYTHING. It doesn't need a walking foot. I love love love this straight stitch machine!
        ,

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          #19
          Re: hello, newbie, looking for quilting machine purchase help

          I too love my 6600 that I purchased in 2013 upon the recommendation of a Quilt Shop owner who said they were work horses. I love that the AccuFeed is built in and think it does a beautiful quilting stitch. For the money the quality can't be beat in my opinion.

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            #20
            Re: hello, newbie, looking for quilting machine purchase help

            Originally posted by Nesie View Post
            I too love my 6600 that I purchased in 2013 upon the recommendation of a Quilt Shop owner who said they were work horses. I love that the AccuFeed is built in and think it does a beautiful quilting stitch. For the money the quality can't be beat in my opinion.
            I have the 6600 also. When I was in Ill last year I saw my Janome in a quilt shop for almost the same price I paid for it new in 2009. So along withit being a work horse,maybe it holds it's value also. Sews everything from jeans to batiste. Kathy

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              #21
              Re: hello, newbie, looking for quilting machine purchase help

              I love my Singer s18, has all the features needed for me an super easy to use. Thread cutter and up or down needle is very helpful on this machine. Whichever you decide to buy, take your time and see if you can test drive or find demos on YouTube.

              Hope this helps you out.
              Gary
              Gary,

              "No regrets, only learning opportunities."

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                #22
                Re: hello, newbie, looking for quilting machine purchase help

                Babsy, I have 3 Janome machines, and I've been happy with all of them. The one I use every day is the 8900.

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                  #23
                  Re: hello, newbie, looking for quilting machine purchase help

                  Originally posted by GuitarGramma View Post
                  Well, we definitely agree on the Juki!

                  I was just trying to give Babsy a heads up that the cost of accessories is much higher in the Bernina world. I didn't mean to disparage Bernina machines, just the higher cost!
                  Yes, I agree with you on the expense of extra bits and pieces!! I got several with the machine, and I have bought a quarter inch foot which I paid for with a gift card I got for Christmas. At Sew Expo, I picked up another, which was a lot less, plus it was 20% off at the show. In the future if I think I need more feet, that is where I will buy them!
                  pat.

                  No rain....no rainbows!


                  sigpic

                  If you can't be nice.....BE QUIET!

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                    #24
                    Re: hello, newbie, looking for quilting machine purchase help

                    Take a look at SewingMachinesPlus.com. There are a number of machines on that site, and more importantly, there are many many reviews of those machines. I find it very helpful as I, too, am in the market for a quilting machine. That site also offers financing options, some with 0% interest.

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                      #25
                      Re: hello, newbie, looking for quilting machine purchase help

                      Originally posted by bubba View Post
                      I own a variety of machines, and my favorite for piecing is the Juki TL2010. It is a very solid, straight stitch only machine. It's also great for fmqing. You can find them for just under $1000.
                      This is the machine I have and I love it. Very easy to do fmqing on. I can only do meandering so it works for me.

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                        #26
                        Re: hello, newbie, looking for quilting machine purchase help

                        I would recommend that you deal with your local stores which should have a good reputation for maintenance, too. Personally, I have several machines, but I absolutely almost always use my Brother Innovis - it's a QC1000 which they don't make anymore, it is also an embroidery machine. Large throat, great for domestic machine quilting with an extension table which was included. Not sure what model of Brother would be comparable, but you might want to stop into the shop and check them out and do a test sew or two! PS I have never had any problems with this machine and have had it for at least 12 years. I sew almost every day on it. Quilts mostly these days.
                        “Of all the paths you take in life, make sure a few of them are dirt.” ― John Muir
                        “We can be many things in this life, choose to be kind!” ― author unknown

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                          #27
                          Re: hello, newbie, looking for quilting machine purchase help

                          I have purchased 2 machines online at Ken's Sewing Machine. One of them was my Janome Artistic 18 sit down. The other was my Brother embroidery machine. I've been very happy with them, and the prices were extremely competitive, matching another online site, plus free shipping.

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                            #28
                            Re: hello, newbie, looking for quilting machine purchase help

                            Originally posted by Babsy View Post
                            tension issues scare me, I confess. I would like a machine that is easy to use and adjusts tension automatically if possible.
                            You need to conquer your fears of tension issues. LOL Sometimes easier said than done, but somewhere along the line you'll have a stitch problem that you want to blame on tension, when it may not actually be. For the most part once tension is set you don't need to touch it. Changing threads, or fabric type and thickness will sometimes require a very slight adjustment to the top tension, but it's rare. This is something to learn, and simple, and you'll be better off knowing. There's a whole lot of other things that happen within a machine that one might think- TENSION first. It's most often a housekeeping issue with the machine.

                            So... Don't rely on "automatic" tensioning. Those manufacturers that push that as a feature don't tell you the whole story. Auto-tensioning happens only on the bobbin thread, and that's for top loading style bobbins only. Yes, it does a decent job of bobbin thread tension for a fairly wide range of threads, UNTIL- your bobbin area needs a good cleaning. There's lots of good info out there on setting tension, and once you pick up on it you'll wonder what all the hub-bub was about. Totally easy and simple.

                            My thoughts on [which machine?] for piecing is keep it simple. While my computerized Janome does a good job, I always piece on vintage mechanical machines. First I don't need all the stitches, or the bells and whistles, and for the most part they can be a hindrance when piecing. On all the "fancy" machines there's a whole lotta bulk hanging out over the left of the needle. I find this reduces visibility and accessibility, especially when easing in curves, threading, changing needles or feet. I got man hands, and now are less than limber, so I need all the room I can get. Another thing I find important is the "bulk" of the free arm. Top loaders have a bulkier arm (front to back especially) and aren't as easy to use for garment construction or piecing tight radius curves.

                            In a new machine that leaves the choice to a mechanical straight stitcher like the Juki mentioned in other posts. Once you get used to the bottom loading (side or front) bobbin, you'll find it no more difficult than a top loading drop in bobbin.
                            You gots to risk it to gets the biscuit-

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