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Looking at Long Arm Machines

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    Looking at Long Arm Machines

    So I have been sewing since I was 8. My first quilt, my best friend and I made for an art project in 1976. It was a churn and dash that we hand pieced and tied. Since then I have made a few quilts here and there. In the past 15 years I have been getting more into quilting to the point that I have many many projects started, several quilts that need quilted and many more planned. I have tried machine quilting on my sewing machine but it is not meant for very big quilts despite being a "quilting" sewing machine. I am in the market for a long arm machine but everytime I think I know what I want someone tells me they hear bad things about them.

    So I would like to hear from the people who own them. I am looking at an APQS, a Handi-Quilter and a Gammil.If you own one of these please let me know what you like and dislike about them. If you own another brand and think I should look into it Let me know. Thanks

    #2
    Re: Looking at Long Arm Machines

    I own an Innova, love it, and think you should definitely add it to your list to consider. It is the only quilting machine that has a 24/365 phone service that can help you at any time! It comes in a variety of sizes and is able to quilt from front only with a pantovision or from front and back, with lasers to do pantographs either way, and of course ruler work and custom freehand. It has been engineered like professional production equipment and you can learn to do all maintenance and repairs. The frame can withstand standing on it, if you choose, even the rails and bars.....built like bridges. All of the technology that comes out after you buy your machine can be added on, without having to switch in machines or buy a newer model. I am sold on it! Now if only I could perfect my quilting!!

    Comment


      #3
      Re: Looking at Long Arm Machines

      You may want to search for other longarm threads on this site. There have been many recently. What part of the country are you in? Can you visit a show that has many machines for you to try out? You definitely want to try out multiple machines and decide which you like best. I found a dealer only 8 miles away from me that sells multiple brands. If you are buying new, ask about any free classes to learn how to use them. I have a Tin Lizzie ESP, because it was what I could afford. Took me a bit to get used to it, but I love it. Have taken a class on a brand new Gammil Vision 2, and it was super smooth. Loved it a lot, but it's not in my budget.

      Good luck with your decision.

      Comment


        #4
        Re: Looking at Long Arm Machines

        It depends on if you want to stand to quilt or sit down. Last year, I purchased the Baby Lock Tiara II LA machine, which is mounted on the table, which also has an extension table on the left side. It takes up a space approx. 30" x 54". I'm very pleased with it. I did not have space for a larger machine. I prefer to sit down to quilt. There are pics of it in my Sewing Room pic album.

        Comment


          #5
          Re: Looking at Long Arm Machines

          Welcome to the forum! I would invest in a little trip to a quilt show like they have in Paducah and Houston. There, every long arm machine available will be on display where you can try each machine out and talk to the sales people with your questions.

          Even if you are thinking of buying a second hand machine, go check out the show and try out the machines there. Many of them are upgradeable.

          Comment


            #6
            Re: Looking at Long Arm Machines

            I'm not an owner yet, but I will be purchasing a HandiQuilter Simply Sixteen. I like the more reasonable price point of this machine. It's a stand up machine. I rented time on one to finish two kid's quilts recently and had a blast.

            Make a list of features you must have and then go and test drive the machines. Welcome to the forum.

            Comment


              #7
              Re: Looking at Long Arm Machines

              I thought I had made up my mind with a handiquilter and then fell in love with a nolting. Nolting machines do not have to be sent away for maintenance so keep this in mind as shipping can be costly. The only linty place on this machine is the top of the machine which will swiffer off, or the bobbin case which can be blown out by compress air. This machine is made in america and is completely sealed to the environment. Have you played with any machines? I would play with some to figure out what you like best because if you are going to drop a large purse of money you want to use it because YOU like it, and you don't want to figure out the things you don't like about it after it is too late.
              Blogging ahead.....research in quilting and sewing with a dab of cooking/recipes too.

              https://myquiltprojects.wordpress.com/

              https://thecookbookproject.wordpress.com/

              Comment


                #8
                Re: Looking at Long Arm Machines

                Gammil was always considered the Cadillac of the longarm machines. It is what M* uses. The one thing I will say about them is that they are no longer American made machines, now being made in China, I believe for the last year or so.
                K is for Karen 😊​..................
                Cremation - My last hope for a smokin' hot body.


                Before you speak,
                T - is it TRUE?
                H - is it HELPFUL?
                I - is it INSPIRING?
                N - is it NECESSARY?
                K - is it KIND?

                Comment


                  #9
                  Re: Looking at Long Arm Machines

                  I've just bought a HQ Infiniti 26" prostitcher and 12 foot frame. It has a footprint of 5' x 12'. I've only had it 2 weeks and it's gorgeous. I'm still learning to use it. The more I'm learning about it the more in love with it I am! Although the users manual is online I would have liked a hard copy and for the price of it I think one should be included.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Re: Looking at Long Arm Machines

                    Originally posted by Deegles View Post
                    I thought I had made up my mind with a handiquilter and then fell in love with a nolting. Nolting machines do not have to be sent away for maintenance so keep this in mind as shipping can be costly. The only linty place on this machine is the top of the machine which will swiffer off, or the bobbin case which can be blown out by compress air. This machine is made in america and is completely sealed to the environment. Have you played with any machines? I would play with some to figure out what you like best because if you are going to drop a large purse of money you want to use it because YOU like it, and you don't want to figure out the things you don't like about it after it is too late.
                    Please don't use canned/compressed air on any quilting or sewing machine! Canned air will blow the lint further into the machine. Use a brush, pipe cleaner, or vacuum to get the lint out.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Re: Looking at Long Arm Machines

                      Originally posted by hh677 View Post
                      Please don't use canned/compressed air on any quilting or sewing machine! Canned air will blow the lint further into the machine. Use a brush, pipe cleaner, or vacuum to get the lint out.
                      Actually how this jewel is made, these are factory instructions for cleaning as it is completely sealed and so no dust can travel into the machine. I don't have a picture of it but the bobbin area is completely open to the "elements" and why it gathers dust.
                      Blogging ahead.....research in quilting and sewing with a dab of cooking/recipes too.

                      https://myquiltprojects.wordpress.com/

                      https://thecookbookproject.wordpress.com/

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Re: Looking at Long Arm Machines

                        Originally posted by hh677 View Post
                        Please don't use canned/compressed air on any quilting or sewing machine! Canned air will blow the lint further into the machine. Use a brush, pipe cleaner, or vacuum to get the lint out.
                        It can also blow condensation into the machine which will lead to rust.

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Re: Looking at Long Arm Machines

                          Originally posted by Deegles View Post
                          I thought I had made up my mind with a handiquilter and then fell in love with a nolting. Nolting machines do not have to be sent away for maintenance so keep this in mind as shipping can be costly.
                          My HandiQuilter daaler does repairs on site, so I won't need to be sending in the machine for repair/maintenance.

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Re: Looking at Long Arm Machines

                            I have a Babylock Tiara III, like JCY has. It's a sit down long arm. I have been using it and getting the hang of it pretty good. It takes up very little room and so far I love it. I don't have room for a long arm on a frame so this works out really well for me. I've quilted several quilts on it, a couple of them large lap sized quilts and when I get better at it, I know I can do bed sized quilts. It doesn't have computerized designs on it, so everything I do is free motion. My dealer can do any needed repairs right in my home.
                            A day patched with quilting Seldom unravels Sharon

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Re: Looking at Long Arm Machines

                              Canned air should not be used for computers, laptops, or printers either. Use the small vacuum attachments or even the brush tool from your reg. vacuum.

                              Comment

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