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    Big box vs. dealers

    Is there any hard cold facts (written documentation) that any brand of sewing machine from a big box store is actually made differently than the same machine from a dealer store? Of course dealers would say there is a difference and of course big box stores would say there is no difference. But is there written proof anywhere or is it all hearsay? I am omitting the service factor you get from a dealer. I just mean in how they are manufactured and the quality of the parts.
    Hugs,
    Joanne

    There are no mistakes, only happy accidents. - Bob Ross

    A girl needs to surround herself with TONS of happiness.
    Happiness = fabric!:icon_woohoo:

    #2
    Re: Big box vs. dealers

    I was told that you can tell by the model numbers. The standard models carried by dealers will be the same as available to every dealer and their repair manuals are the same so any dealer can repair any standard model. Big boxer's may have different model number.

    Told by a dealer - but I've checked model numbers carried by both - the models carried by big boxers actually may have different parts because the big box buyers can "design" the features they want included and the quality of the parts (metal vs plastic I assume) and they are given their own model numbers. I've had 3 different dealers in 3 different states tell me that people have brought in big box machines that they couldn't repair because their regular dealer parts wouldn't work ... and I believe they were all Singer's.

    So both statements can be true ... I guess it would all depend on who was involved in the design of the machine. You have to evaluate each model individually. But I expect that BY MODEL NUMBER they would all be standardized. You would need to see the repair manuals to see the quality of the replacement parts and I don't know if they make big box manuals available to dealers.

    Just my personal observation. Hope someone can confirm!
    Last edited by Judy, USMC; February 6, 2014, 06:06 PM.

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      #3
      Re: Big box vs. dealers

      I don't have any knowledge of sewing machines. However my brother owned a trampoline manufacturing company. When walmart contracted for units they specified certain things - type of springs, thickness of pads, number of rows of stitching to get the price down. Most consumers could not see the differences but they were there. It would seem that the same holds true for sewing machines.
      Ann

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        #4
        Re: Big box vs. dealers

        This is an intereting subject. My question is why would any manufacturer change the quality of their product just because the seller wants different things used in production which than changes the quality of you product. Why would they just say to that seller they cannot have my product to sell

        As someone who makes something, I would not compromise the quality of my product for anybody

        Its terrible how the retail process works. And it is kind of sad that the producer of the product has to sacrifice the quality and their reputation to sell something

        Or am i totally off base and reading/thinking wrong on this subject
        Karen
        Life is short - Live everyday to the fullest

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          #5
          Re: Big box vs. dealers

          Walmart has huge buying power for one thing as does some of the other big box stores. When they approach a small to medium producer and want to double or triple their sales that may be how they can stay in business. And I am sure they are a big customer of Singer, etc.also. Not agreeing with it. I support my small local stores as much as possible but in some areas they have been run out of business by the big box stores. Very sad I think.
          Ann

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            #6
            Re: Big box vs. dealers

            Originally posted by Kgrammiecaz View Post
            This is an intereting subject. My question is why would any manufacturer change the quality of their product just because the seller wants different things used in production which than changes the quality of you product. Why would they just say to that seller they cannot have my product to sell

            As someone who makes something, I would not compromise the quality of my product for anybody

            Its terrible how the retail process works. And it is kind of sad that the producer of the product has to sacrifice the quality and their reputation to sell something

            Or am i totally off base and reading/thinking wrong on this subject
            I used to contract for a company (well known for helicopters) and I did the manuals. Seems they had quite a few lines of helicopters from little cheap dragonfly touring copters to military and search and rescue copters. Seems they don't put much effort into the smaller touring copters and I would come across many, many mistakes in their maintenance manuals, everything from spelling, to writing, to wrong parts and multiple (and very different) parts with the same part numbers.This was brought to their attention and they didn't care. I guess it all comes down to the all-mighty buck. There is no such thing as ethics anymore. Sad.

            Before I buy, I want to know if there is a difference. I am looking at a Brother that could be bought in either place. I won't need lessons and as far as maintenance, I have always done my own (comes from growing up poor. You do for yourself). The one I am looking at is the PC420 for all the bells and whistles at a price of $350. I am also considering the Janome DC3050 with less bells and whistles. Both machines have very good reviews and I don't take "names" into account. The Janome has less and is $100 more.
            Hugs,
            Joanne

            There are no mistakes, only happy accidents. - Bob Ross

            A girl needs to surround herself with TONS of happiness.
            Happiness = fabric!:icon_woohoo:

            Comment


              #7
              Re: Big box vs. dealers

              Originally posted by Kgrammiecaz View Post
              My question is why would any manufacturer change the quality of their product just because the seller wants different things used in production which than changes the quality of you product. Why would they just say to that seller they cannot have my product to sell.
              ....
              And it is kind of sad that the producer of the product has to sacrifice the quality and their reputation to sell something
              Personal opinion ~ This may have been how one sewing machine manufacturer's reputation went downhill. It appeared to me that the complaints started shortly after their machines started being sold at both big box and fabric chain stores. But corporations operate differently than private entities. The board of directors make decisions on how it will affect their profit margin. Private entities seem to operate on personal pride - that is if they can afford to stay in business without that money.

              Comment


                #8
                Re: Big box vs. dealers

                Originally posted by Ahamblin View Post
                Walmart has huge buying power for one thing as does some of the other big box stores. When they approach a small to medium producer and want to double or triple their sales that may be how they can stay in business. And I am sure they are a big customer of Singer, etc.also. Not agreeing with it. I support my small local stores as much as possible but in some areas they have been run out of business by the big box stores. Very sad I think.
                There are very few places in my little state to buy from. My LQS only sells Pfaff. Out of my league and on top of that, I have watched businesses come and go in my town and I have no faith that it will be around for another 5 years. Not the best customer service. There really is only one other place about 25 miles from here and I know how overpriced they can be. Walmart is here and did run out small business but you go where you have to go. Sometimes you don't have much of a choice.
                Hugs,
                Joanne

                There are no mistakes, only happy accidents. - Bob Ross

                A girl needs to surround herself with TONS of happiness.
                Happiness = fabric!:icon_woohoo:

                Comment


                  #9
                  Re: Big box vs. dealers

                  This video is a few years old but had great info to watch for when buying a sewing machine. Hope it helps.

                  How to Buy a Sewing Machine - CONSUMER ALERT - YouTube
                  "I'm putting together a list of 100 reasons why I am NOT relentless!" - Sue Heck, The Middle

                  Leonard: For God's sake, Sheldon, do I have to hold up a sarcasm sign every time I open my mouth?
                  Sheldon (intrigued): You have a sarcasm sign?

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Re: Big box vs. dealers

                    Makes me want to open up my machine, and see what is inside.
                    Originally posted by pcbatiks View Post
                    This video is a few years old but had great info to watch for when buying a sewing machine. Hope it helps.

                    How to Buy a Sewing Machine - CONSUMER ALERT - YouTube
                    Blankets wrap you in warmth, quilts wrap you in love

                    Marilyn......
                    sigpic

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                      #11
                      Re: Big box vs. dealers

                      Wow.. I had never heard this before! I always went with a dealer or smaller store for the repair issues (thinking they'd be better to deal with for repairs than a place like Walmart) Plus, the people at a dealer or smaller store would not only have sale people but those people woud have some kind of knowledge about the machines...while Walmart not only has no sales people, but if they did..they probably wouldn't know much about what they are selling. But what parts come with the machine sold where...boy, hadn't thought about that. Interesting discussion.
                      Cheri

                      www.fabricandmemories.blogspot.com

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Re: Big box vs. dealers

                        Originally posted by pcbatiks View Post
                        This video is a few years old but had great info to watch for when buying a sewing machine. Hope it helps.

                        How to Buy a Sewing Machine - CONSUMER ALERT - YouTube
                        Seems like a commercial for Janome. He made no mention of the brand the one he kept showing was. If it is so bad why not say so we would be aware if this video truly is a consumer alert. There are many great machines out there. The man on the video saus he repairs all types of machines and he states only janome as good to buy. Iknow, he said they are the best. This could have been a better video if he had talked about a couple different brands. Sort of like a consumer reports, which are unbiased. He was biasedi think. This is just my opinion. I certainly could be way off the mark
                        Karen
                        Life is short - Live everyday to the fullest

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Re: Big box vs. dealers

                          I had a Viking Huskystar C10 and that so explains someof the issues. I had bought a long folding table to sew on and none of the stitches would work. It had worked fine on my dining room table. The new table would bend just slightly with the weight of the machine and it would appear that the machine would flex also. I am guessing that there was no support frame inside. I did see a machine like my new one at the dealer taken apart for cleaning and it has a solid frame. Very informative video even if it was a little biased.
                          Ann

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                            #14
                            Re: Big box vs. dealers

                            It is just a guess but I would think that Walmart and the other big names stores would do the same thing to sewing machines as they have to all the other small appliances, have them specifically made for them and have them made with cheaper parts than the manufacturer usually makes the item. This makes me mad so I try to avoid buying appliances there but do to very limited places to buy, sometimes there is no choice.

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Re: Big box vs. dealers

                              the best thing to do would be contact the manufacturer directly and ask
                              “What we do for ourselves dies with us. What we do for others and the world, is and remains immortal.”

                              ― Albert Pine

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