Author Topic: What Sewing Machine should I Want?  (Read 9690 times)

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Offline PatE

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What Sewing Machine should I Want?
« on: March 23, 2006, 08:28:04 PM »
Hi All - this is my first post although I have been a long time lurker on Sewing World - never could get it to work when I tried to login.  I have a question on a possible new machine purchase.  I have a Brother 8200 that was upgraded (mother board) to an 8500.  I only do garmet sewing (no quilting) but a lot of it using everything from coating wool and a little fleece to chiffon.  I am not happy at all with the Brother anymore. Some of my complaints are:

Does not handle twin needle work at all
Zig Zag or stretch stiching overlapped elastic looks terrible on bobbin side
The machine is not fond of knits at all
Had the needle bar replaced last year and it sounds like it will need to be replaced again
Touch screen will not stay in alignment
Inconsistent buttonholes

I guess you get the picture.  Anyway, I do a lot of sewing and do not use the embroidery function much at all - although the Brother does embroider beautifully.  I have been thinking about trading it (and many many embroidery cards - no software though) for the Janome 6500.

Just looking for opinions from garment sewers that have had some experience with this machine.  The things I do like about the Brother and would like to continue to have are - needle threader, thread cutter - those are two things I really don't want to do without.

Any opinions are welcome - I don't think I am interested in the 6600 - might be overkill for me and will add to the price.

I have a dealer that I am not really excited about doing business with - he is the only one in the area though.

Thanks for any help you can give.
Pat
« Last Edit: March 23, 2006, 08:56:17 PM by Lisa »

Bethany

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Re: What Sewing Machine should I Want?
« Reply #1 on: March 24, 2006, 03:55:22 AM »
I'm a quilter, but have used the Janome 6500.  It's a nice machine and very smooth.  The cutters work very nice and I think it's a 7mm wide feed dog, but I could be wrong.  The decorative stitches are nice.  It holds 2 spools of thread and is easy to use.  I know it does a double needle, but I haven't tried it.

Another nice machine is the Elna 7200 which is very similar to the 6500.  It's a little more, but I think is has some more options and has a smoother ride than the 6500.  I think the only major complaint for the 6500 is the paint chipping problem.  The 6500 and the Elna 7200 are ones I am considering as I enjoyed them alot.  I would take some of your fabric and test them on the machine and try out the features. 

Kalena

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Re: What Sewing Machine should I Want?
« Reply #2 on: March 24, 2006, 02:19:45 PM »
If you don't do a lot of embroidery, perhaps you should consider an older, reconditioned machine. Most of the pre-1970 Singers are great machines. I have a Singer Rocketeer 503 and it does everything I need. I have, over time, acquired nearly all of the top-hat embroidery cams, extra feet, ruffler, buttonholer, etc. The machine is easy to maintain and repair. Many parts are still available brand new. Best thing is I didn't pay any money for it. The church ladies decided to throw it out! Luckily my mother rescued and gave it to me.

A reputable dealer usually has older machines in their showroom for $100 or less. I have tried out new, basic Bernina's and liked them.

Sewwolf

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Re: What Sewing Machine should I Want?
« Reply #3 on: August 19, 2006, 06:09:22 PM »
The Janome's 6500, 6600 were designed for quilters in mind but are great machines. However since I used to do mostly garments (now more quilting) I would surely miss that  free arm in doing clothing what neither of those Janome's have.  If you are interested in a Janome I would look at the 4900 which I do beleive has a free arm.

Offline Diane in Boston

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Re: What Sewing Machine should I Want?
« Reply #4 on: August 20, 2006, 03:27:02 AM »
I have the Janome 6500 and sew mostly clothing.  In the almost 3 years that I've had it, I've probably made 100 garments.  I don't miss the free arm at all, though I thought I would and kept my Bernina in case I needed the free arm.  If you sew a sleeve or small opening from the inside, it's feels as though you have a free arm machine.  The Janome works really well with any kind of thread, makes nice stitches and is a joy to use.  I have machine quilted a couple of queen-sized quilts and was happy for the large harp space.  And this machine is about a third of the price of many other TOL machines.

That said, machines are very individual, and I think it's worth trying out a bunch before deciding.  I had my heart set on a Bernina and was surprised--but very pleased--that I bought this one.  I was convinced when I tried it out using a variety of fabrics I brought to the store and found that it worked well on all of them.  I have no regrets.

Diane
Diane

Offline Kathy in NE Ohio

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Re: What Sewing Machine should I Want?
« Reply #5 on: August 20, 2006, 05:03:51 PM »
I'll second what Diane has said about the 6600.  I have had mine for several months now and am loving it more and more all the time.  I also kept my Bernina 1090 in case I needed the free arm and I haven't needed it either.  For the most part I have only sewn summer season clothes and once I learned to insert a sleeve with my serger I haven't used my 6600 for a sleeve in a long time.  So far I haven't missed the free arm.  My decision was between the Bernina 440 and the 6600.  I've been a Bernina fan for a long time.  They are both nice machines but once I sat at the 440 and discovered it doesn't have a thread cutting button, that was it!  considering the 6600 was at least $1000 less it made up my mind and I have not ever been dissapointed.  But I also agree that sewing machines are a personal thing.  You just have to try and try them before you decide.  When you narrow in down go try them again and take all the time you need.  Good luck.

stitchntime9

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Re: What Sewing Machine should I Want?
« Reply #6 on: August 22, 2006, 01:02:26 PM »
Buttonholes are a gripe with everyone it seems.  I finally figured the one out on my Kenmore 19365 and have a love affair going with it.

I would raise a stink directly with Brother because you shouldn't be having the needle bar and screen problems you are having and make a point to Brother that you are looking for another brand machine that is going to stay togetherand operate like it should with minimal problems.  Then sit back and see what they do.

Knits usually resolve with a stretch or ball point needle and lengthening the stitch a bit.  I found my overedge foot improves zigzag stitching greatly.

I found the best way to look for a new machine is visit the company sites, pick a few of their machines from each site and print them out...then go and try them out for the machine that feels best to work with.

Offline DeniseM

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Re: What Sewing Machine should I Want?
« Reply #7 on: August 22, 2006, 06:55:14 PM »
Maybe I'm opening the proverbial can of worms here  ;) but the machine you should want is the one you test drive that feels most comfortable for you and has the best, easiest interface. I have a Bernina 165E which I've hardly used yet because my Viking Designer 1 is so easy and does such a great job. I also have a Pfaff mechanical 1540 which I've dubbed my Blue Betty because it's so darned cute with all those buttons, and it does a fantastic job. It was also less expensive than the other machines so I take it on travel. One of my sewing buddies has two Janomes (don't know the model numbers) and loves them. I've used Bernina 1100 and 1200 series machines and think they're fabulous (but I didn't like the 1500 because of the interface. I couldn't see the screen and that ball was a hassel to use). Whatever you do buy - and I can't emphasize this enough - go to a reputable dealer who will give you a warranty and lessons, which are so important because otherwise you won't know 1/10th of what your machine can do. I've only sewn on a Brother a couple of times in classes but they just didn't feel comfortable to me, though they did fine.

It's important to not let yourself be influenced by what someone else has and likes/dislikes. Try them all and pick what's best for you.

You should also have your Brother checked out for maintenance. Have fun getting out there and searching.
« Last Edit: August 23, 2006, 01:37:15 PM by DeniseM »

Offline LyndaC

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Re: What Sewing Machine should I Want?
« Reply #8 on: August 28, 2006, 07:47:04 PM »
I am afraid I am quite prartial to the Singer XL6000.  Even the last Threads comparisson showed that:
*of the top 7, the Singer XL6000 was the cheapest.  It is now even cheaper.
*No more bobbin filling!  Why would you not want this feature?
*thread exchanger:  no babysitting your machine.
*automatic through-the-tension-and-the-needle threading
*SD card or computer hookup
*regular sewing is superb
*All the top sewing feet included
*converts from sewing to embroidery in one easy step.

I haven't found a feature yet tht another machine had that I need, but I have found many much more epensive machines that do not equal my Singer.

Good luck, and happy hunting!

Sewwolf

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Re: What Sewing Machine should I Want?
« Reply #9 on: August 29, 2006, 06:03:19 PM »
I've heard great things about the Singer XL6000. I would have looked at it but the only Singer dealer well she and I had words about a repair they screwed up, very long story won't bore you.  It was quite a bit cheaper then my Janome 10001 although I love that machine. Could have brought a lot of fabric and thread with the difference.

Offline judith

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Re: What Sewing Machine should I Want?
« Reply #10 on: August 29, 2006, 06:31:45 PM »
I want to chime in and second the recommendation for the singer xl6000. I"ve been through several machines in my sewing hobby, and a couple of years ago started to upgrade everything in anticipation of retirement and less disposable income.

My singer xl6000 is my 3rd embroidery machine, and probably my last. The previous 2 were stand alones - a simplicity se3 (clone of the brother stand alone) and a janome 300e - which I hated.

I've also owned other sewing-only machines, including a husqavarna viking and a kenmore, I haven't used the singer xl6000 much for sewing, only because I really like my brother pc6000. But I did make a project when it was new, and I was really impressed. If my brother ever gives up the ghost, I will be quite happy to use the singer as my main sewing machine.

As to the embroidery, it's the best I've come across, bar none.

I bought it online. Singer has bee great replying to my questions, also online.

This is a top notch machine.
Most people are as happy as they allow themselves to be. (Abraham Lincoln)

Offline DottieMae

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Re: What Sewing Machine should I Want?
« Reply #11 on: September 07, 2006, 02:12:06 AM »
Hi all,

I thought I'd never buy another machine. However, as I age, I'm almost 70!, my Bernina 1530 gets harder and harder for me to use.  I recently looked at a Bernina Activa 230 PE.  Now it is not the same as the 1530.  Far from it.  It is lighter in weight though and I can pick it up.  Also, it seems a lot easier to use.  If anyone has this machine, tell us about it.  O.K.? 

One problem I see it that I have all these extra feet for the 1530 and they are not interchangeable.  I guess the new owner would love to have them too.  lol

Dottie

Offline PatE

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Re: What Sewing Machine should I Want?
« Reply #12 on: September 07, 2006, 12:54:15 PM »
Thanks to everyone for their replies.  I did purchase the Janome 6500 and I love it - makes sewing a pleasure once again.  I kept the Brother as the trade-in was very low (same dealer it was purchased from and that serviced the machine- go figure).  I will use it for the very occasional embroidery I may want to do.

I also have a Bernina 830 that I bought four years ago because the Brother was in service so often.  It does a great straight stitch but was not versatile enough for the wide range of materials I use.

All in all, I think I am now set.  Two years ago I bought my first serger - a Babylock Imagine.  I hade been sewing for 20 plus years and thought I didn't need one (only garment sewing and mostly lined items) - but now I can't imagine being without this machine either.

I am looking forward to doing a terrific fall wardrobe and cut out items from fabrics I would worry over before - like chiffon and silk and knits - but I now feel the Janome will handle with ease.

To those that recommended a Singer - I had a 1030 Touch and Sew that I drove to the grave over 18 years.  It stopped and was not repairable in the middle of my daughter's prom dress.  It was a gift and not what I would have picked out but did serve me well for a long time - just didn't want to go in that direction again.

Thanks again and I hope I will only be posting in the other folders for a long time - no new machines for me (I feel guilty have three as it is  :-*

Happy Sewing - Pat

Offline Diane in Boston

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Re: What Sewing Machine should I Want?
« Reply #13 on: September 08, 2006, 01:21:04 AM »
Good luck Pat.  I have the same two machines you have--the Janome 6500 and the Babylock Imagine and have been happy with both of them.  I'm still lusting after a coverstitch only machine but that will have to wait awhile.  It's amazing what you can do with good machines and what a joy it is to have them. 

Diane
Diane

gram

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Re: What Sewing Machine should I Want?
« Reply #14 on: October 04, 2006, 03:59:58 AM »
I have the Brother 8500 which sews and embroiders extremely well! Perhaps the 8200 upgrade was a lemon! I also had a used Bernina 1130 whice I let my daughter have, and from that machine alone, I am in love with the 1100 and 1200 model (such as 1130, 1230 and 1260) Bernina machines, too!!

Offline PatE

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Re: What Sewing Machine should I Want?
« Reply #15 on: October 04, 2006, 02:19:39 PM »
I have had the Janome 6500 for a few months now and it has been a dream machine.  Through summer weight fabrics and now into fall and winter.  I have a faux leather jacket cut out that I will work on more this weekend and even that is not a problem.

I also like the Bernina 830 that I bought as a back up.  It has a terrific straight stitch.  I use it occasionally just to keep the parts moving - and once I remember to stop hitting the front of the machine for the reserve lock stitch, we get along just fine. :D

I have had 3 Brother machines 7500, 8200 and the 8500.  They have all worked well at the begining and then after about a year the stitch quality seemed to fall off.  They had to be serviced more than any other machine I have ever owned.  I know each machine has it own "personality" but I do so much garment sewing I just was not happy with the time and attention these machines required or with the end result from all the futzing with them.  I do agree though that the embroidery on the Brother is amazing - that is why I kept mine.  Since I make mostly tailored clothes, I don't use the embroidery very much but it is nice to have when I want some.  I also have some embroidery cards, thread and stabilizer so I am set for that when needed.

I don't think the output quality of the Brother had anything to do with the upgrade though.  I went through three of these machines as that is what the dealer kept pushing and I was comfortable using the machine.  I finally just went with suggestions of other sewers and tried the Janome this time - I think I have a machine that will last at least as long as the Singer did.  I guess we all have different needs and what we feel services those the best.  I probably never should have purchased an embroidery machine - but was caught up in the glamour of it - just should have realized to would not fit with what I do.  I would never talk down about the Brother machines as a whole as I know some that love their "Brothers"! - Just not a good fit for me.

Offline MN_SwimMom

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Re: What Sewing Machine should I Want?
« Reply #16 on: October 04, 2006, 05:09:05 PM »
Pat -

I'm trying to decide between a Janome 6500 or 6600 and a Viking 770.  Do you find that you miss having a free arm on the Janome 6500?  I have an older machine with a free arm, but it seems like it would be a pain to keep two machines threaded and going for each project.  I also do only garment sewing (and a little home dec, when necessary) - no quilting.

TIA!

Janet in MN

"Dress to please yourself...Forget 'you are what you wear'...wear what you are."
--Elizabeth Hawkes

Offline Kathy in NE Ohio

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Re: What Sewing Machine should I Want?
« Reply #17 on: October 04, 2006, 06:31:15 PM »
Janet, I have the Janome 6600 and love it.  I admit I have a machine that has a free arm, but I have found that I don't have all that much trouble sewing without it anyway.  Any chance I get I sew sleeves in flat and I am not all that hung up about the free arm.  I love the machine.  It feels solid, tracks well. makes a nice buttonhole, does the decorative stitches very well.  I tried a 770 and it did a good job too but I liked the feel of the 6600 better.  I also have a Designer SE that I just got and as much as I love that machine, I will probably use it mostly for embroidery.  I keep saying it will be my last up grade, but usually falls in the list of "famous last words."

Kathy

Offline PatE

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Re: What Sewing Machine should I Want?
« Reply #18 on: October 04, 2006, 07:27:50 PM »
Dear SwimMom - I don't miss the free arm at all.  I had the Brother (it has a free-arm) in the sewing cabinet that was purchased for the old Singer I had.  It "fit" ok but was recessed and had to be lifted out to use the free arm.  So I didn't use it that much at all and learned to set sleeves either flat or with the sleeve portion of the garment against the feed dogs so it would ease better.

I didnt' even fully realize that the 6500 did not have a free arm until I set it up at home since that was not a top option on my list of necessary items.  The 6500 is also in that same cabinet but it is even a closer fit that the Brother!  The important things that I had on the Brother that I did not want to loose was the needle threader, reverse button, and the automatic button hole foot.  The Brother had the "start" button - you have to use that if the machine is set up to do embroidery - but I also don't miss that on the Janome.  The 6500 does not have a start button but I guess the 6600 does.

I didn't buy the 6600 as I don't quilt and didn't see where the acufeed system would be necessary for what I do.  I have read though on the Janome 65../6600 Yahoo list (mostly quilters it seems) that those that do quilt love that feature.  For the few times I need a top feed system, I just use the walking foot.  All-in-all there is not much that this machine is lacking or that I don't seem to be able to do well.  So it is a good fit for me and I hope it last a very long time.

Westernwilson

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Re: What Sewing Machine should I Want?
« Reply #19 on: October 05, 2006, 08:54:19 PM »
Pat, everybody is right, you should test drive as many machines as you can. Take in several demo pieces you can quickly do a seam on etc. of fabrics you typically use. If there is something your machine doesn't do, but you want it to, take that in and see how the machines handle it.

That said, I HATE going in to dealerships. I find the staff is often cranky and even crankier if you are not ready to buy a TOL machine. That is one reason why attending a sewing expo, where lots of machines are there to demo, is a nice way to go.

I dealt with my dealer anxiety by doing exhaustive online market research. One great site for that is http://sewing.patternreview.com/SewingMachine/Reviews

It has lots of sewing machine reviews. After I had narrowed down the brand, I contacted most of the dealers in my area, and chose the one I found friendly and professional.

Let us know what you decide!

Regards,
Janet

Offline Jennifer S.

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Re: What Sewing Machine should I Want?
« Reply #20 on: November 02, 2006, 05:50:50 AM »
I am happy to say that I am in the market for a new machine! It looks like my Chanukkah/ Xmas gift this year is going to be a new machine- either a Bernina 230 PE or a 240.
Having my 1005 Bernina is great, but I would love to have a newer model- especially one with programmable & repeatable  buttonholes.. and some new fun stitches.  I sew primarily clothing for myself and do a little bit of occasional home dec items.

Hoping to do some test driving soon, perhaps as soon as this weekend. ;)

I am curious to know if anyone has either model- what do you love about your machine? Are either models quirky? Thanks!!
« Last Edit: November 03, 2006, 12:54:54 AM by Jennifer S. »

Offline Aquacasa

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Re: What Sewing Machine should I Want?
« Reply #21 on: November 21, 2006, 08:10:13 PM »
Hi Jennifer

I have the Bernina 135PE that I bought a couple of years ago to take to an embroidery & textile class. It is almost identical to the 230PE expect the 230PE is the never model has red buttons instead of my blue ones and has more stitches than I have got.  I love that little machine, it sews great and I have found it very easy to use and was up and running straight out of the box.  I love the little cupboard for all your feet etc that clips on the back and it packs away so neatly and performed great at classes where we did free motion embroidery etc. I did at the time look at the 140 which would now be the equivalent of the 240 and was almost swayed by the extra stitches  but chose the one I've got for its portabilty.

before buying the Bernina I did buy and Elna and hated it and believe me that Elna hated me too. (sorry Elna users!) I could not get on with it at all and it was useless for the free machine embroidery. I returned it and bought the Bernina basically on the recommendation of all the other ladies in the class. They all had Berninas apart from 1 lady who had a Brother. I have not been disappointed at all.

Unfortunately after a few months of classes I had to give them up due to work commitments and being pregnant with sciatica and ended up with a walking stick, after physio. (now thankfully A1 fit again).  After the birth of our DD Emily she highjacked my sewing room  as her nursery and I packed away my Janome 6500P and have been managing for the last year and a half quite happily on the dining room table with my Bernina.  I have made a baby quilt, fleece buggy (Stroller) liner etc on it.

This week DH is off work on holiday and has moved stuff round in the house so I have a space where he can build me a permanent desk so I can use my Janome again.
Almost feel a bit sad for my "Nina" as I call her and I feel I will have to relearn how to use the Janome all over again after a long absence.

As to which machine, it depends on if you need the extra stitches on the 240 or want to cart a machine around then the 230PE might be better.
I have to say I fancy some of the extra stitches on the new models especially as I have no alphabet on mine, but can't justify another new machine with my Janome still packed away! 

Good Luck choosing.


Carrie-Jane
Carrie - Hampshire UK

If you can do something with your eyes closed, it is time to find something new.

Offline Jennifer S.

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Re: What Sewing Machine should I Want?
« Reply #22 on: November 23, 2006, 01:33:51 AM »
Thanks Carrie- Jane!  Two days ago I got the official Bernina flyer in the mail about the holiday goodies that come with the machines. Dh says that I can have what ever machine I want. (what a guy! ;) ) Thanks for your suggestions.  I need to make the time to go to my favorite dealer over in the East Bay,  but not this weekend.  There is way too much to do!! :laugh:

Happy sewing to you and Emily!  Every sewing machine needs a good home!

Offline Aquacasa

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Re: What Sewing Machine should I Want?
« Reply #23 on: November 27, 2006, 12:28:49 PM »
What a great DH!!  ;D

Mine is also like that. When I went to get a machine for class I had a small budget in mind and it was him that was looking at the more expensive models!

Have great fun at your dealer trying out the machines!
I am almost jealous, I love trying out new machines.

Carrie - Hampshire UK

If you can do something with your eyes closed, it is time to find something new.

marciamarsha

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Re: What Sewing Machine should I Want?
« Reply #24 on: December 05, 2006, 04:27:07 PM »
Hi All,  Ihave just finished reading about the machines you have and love.
I have had a Singer 337     for more than fifty years. I have recently had it cleaned,
repaired and unfortunately it is acting just like me. ( I am 77 and all my
parts could use replacing. Today it stopped and just sat  and stared.
I spent 100 for the repair and more money for taxis.
OKay, the second machine is a Janome   4618le    . I bought it on recommenation
of my friend and it was purchased by her daughter who  works for the
company, Needless to say I got it for about $150.
BUT, iT IS SO IRRITATINGLY DESIGNED. It has a clear plastic bobbin cover, right in front of the needle
which totally interferes with seeing the seam allowance.
It is annoying to thread, and you need the instruction manual for everything.
I should " I " need the manual. I don't like the way it is designed, built, it feels
shabby.
And today it too jammed. So I am bringing this to you all for guidance.
I live in New York City, not many sewing machine places. But there is a
quilting shop and I think they sell  machines. So I am going to go to all the stores
and try out your numbers.

I totally love the simplicity of my old singer, but I think it's resurrecting days are
over. So I'd, appreciate ideas for a basic,  beginner machine. I really hate machines that are smarter than I am.
Thanks.
« Last Edit: December 05, 2006, 05:12:10 PM by marciamarsha »

Offline Aquacasa

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Re: What Sewing Machine should I Want?
« Reply #25 on: December 05, 2006, 05:30:51 PM »
Hi Marcia,

Sorry to hear about the trouble you are having with your Janome and the fact that your trusted out Singer has given up on you.

From what you have said my advice would be to steer clear of anything to "computerised". Take a look at the Bernina's. They have a basic mechanical 1008 model that might suit you. I have the bernina 135PE (Patchwork Edition) which has been replaced with the 230PE. I find it easy to use and has a good manual and not too many buttons on the front.  Also look at any used Berninas, over here the old ones are very popular, only come with simple stitches but people seem to love them for their simpleness and robustness.

Also Bernina do a more Budget range called "Bernette" they look like they have simpler features and might be worth a look.

I have a Brother that was temprimental and the main circuit board died on it. I bought a cheap Toyota as I was in the middle of a set of curtains at the time and desperate but that machine was a real pile of rubbish, so I sold it on straight away before it drove me completely mad.

What I have learnt is don't impulse buy because you are desperate for a new machine and trust your instincts when trying them out.

Happy machine buying

Carrie
Carrie - Hampshire UK

If you can do something with your eyes closed, it is time to find something new.

Offline judith

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Re: What Sewing Machine should I Want?
« Reply #26 on: December 05, 2006, 06:54:44 PM »
Marcia, I'm sorry too about your machine packing it in.

Maybe my experience with my machines will help.

I wouldn't buy a Janome anything on a bet. Bad experience.

I have a singer xl6000 sewing/embroidery machine that I love, but it's not a simple machine to operate, and that's one of your criteria. I usually have to dig out the manual when using it.

I have a brother pc6000 that I bought several years ago, and it's my favourite machine. I haven't looked at the manual since the first week after I bought it. It's just a nice general sewing machine. It has some built in fancy stitches, but I've never used them so can't comment. It's very user friendly, makes lovely button holes, and behaves more like a drone than a prince. I would recommend this machine, or something similar made by brother.

good luck.

Most people are as happy as they allow themselves to be. (Abraham Lincoln)

Offline MN_SwimMom

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Re: What Sewing Machine should I Want?
« Reply #27 on: December 06, 2006, 01:43:20 AM »
You might look at trying a used mechanical Elna.  I have an Elna SU Jubilee from 1984, when they were still made in Switzerland.  And I LOVE this machine.  It sews through anything, is easy to operate, and has been very dependable.  On top of that it's very quiet!  I got mine locally, but I bought an identical  backup machine on eBay for about $260.  I would highly recommend this model, if you can find one that's been well maintained.
Janet in MN

"Dress to please yourself...Forget 'you are what you wear'...wear what you are."
--Elizabeth Hawkes

marciamarsha

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Re: What Sewing Machine should I Want?
« Reply #28 on: December 06, 2006, 08:39:48 PM »
Hi Carrie, Judith And Swim Mom,
Thank you all, for such detailed suggestions. I will take all your lists with me when I go shopping
 I will look at mechanical machines and I will not ,!!! WILL NOT!!! impulse buy.
Marcia.

Offline Aquacasa

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Re: What Sewing Machine should I Want?
« Reply #29 on: December 06, 2006, 08:45:10 PM »
Good luck with your machine shopping.

Over this week I have been to 5 sewing machine shops looking at Overlockers (Sergers).  Luckily here in the UK, places are close together. 
So far I have not bought anything but I have found 2 stores that I liked the feeling of and the staff were helpful. 

I will probably go back to them for a second look.

 ;D
Carrie - Hampshire UK

If you can do something with your eyes closed, it is time to find something new.

Offline marciae

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Re: What Sewing Machine should I Want?
« Reply #30 on: December 06, 2006, 09:34:11 PM »
I have 3 Vikings and one Janome Gold.  I understand that Viking makes a simple plain machine for about $400 - I do not remember the name, I saw it at the dealers a couple of months ago when I went to ASG meeting.  It looked like a very good machine with a lot on it for the $$.
I refuse to tip toe cautiously thru life only to arrive safely at deaths door.
Live your life in such a way that when your feet hit the floor in the morning, Satan shudders & says...  'Oh darn ........ she's awake!!'
Age may wrinkle the face, but lack of enthusiasm wrinkles the soul

Offline DeniseM

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Re: What Sewing Machine should I Want?
« Reply #31 on: December 10, 2006, 08:08:53 PM »
I also have a Pfaff 1540 mechanical. I love it. I use it for travel, no problems.
FYI my ASG leader has a couple of Janomes and never had trouble with them. Sometimes, you just get a lemon no matter the brand.

Offline Aquacasa

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Re: What Sewing Machine should I Want?
« Reply #32 on: December 11, 2006, 09:04:49 AM »
From what I have found from speaking to various people the Mechanical machines seem to last longer and stand the test of time.  Not being computerised with circuit boards there is less to go wrong.
My old Brother still sewed OK but the brain (circuit board) was playing up and it kept forgetting what stitch you were doing and messed it up as you sewed.

My Mum has an old Frister and Rossman from the early 80's.  She has just dig it out the cupboard and got all my old dolls out of the loft for my daughter. Some of them were a bit naked and had no knickers, so she sewed them up some new ones. Her machine worked great for her and owes her nothing.  She made a whole lot of curtains on it a couple of years ago too.

I am considering getting an old mechanical machine to keep as backup and to take to classes. I do worry about the delicateness of electronics when in the back of your car!
Carrie - Hampshire UK

If you can do something with your eyes closed, it is time to find something new.

Offline LyndaC

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Re: What Sewing Machine should I Want?
« Reply #33 on: June 15, 2007, 06:35:31 PM »
I have the Singer XL6000 and have taught High School sewing using the mechanical machines.  Yes, they are great, but they will eventually break and you may not can find parts for them.  Enjoy them while you have them.

Having said that, I have never used a machine as great at the XL6000.  Threads itself, through the tensions and eye of the needle, FILLS ITS OWN BOBBIN (why would you not love a machine that would do that?), and is user friendly.  I use it constantly.  And the price is better than any of the other "dream machines."

Offline judith

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Re: What Sewing Machine should I Want?
« Reply #34 on: June 15, 2007, 08:41:47 PM »
I posted about my singer xl6000 in December, and mentioned that was not that simple to use. Well, at the time, I'd used it only for embroidery except that I went through the manual once upon purchase and then made another small project.

Since December, I've had to put away my brother pc6000 (it needs a tune up) and have used my singer xl6000 exclusively. This is a wonderful machine! And now that I've used it more actively, it doesn't have such a steep learning curve after all.

The price is usually in the $2500US range, although you may be able to find it cheaper.

I highly recommend this machine.
Most people are as happy as they allow themselves to be. (Abraham Lincoln)

 

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