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Dream machine on a budget
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JillRN1995

JillRN1995
Intermediate
LA USA
Member since 7/10/05
Posts: 75
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Date: 6/2/13 10:01 AM

I love to sew, but I have never treated myself to an extra special sewing machine until now. My budget is $3000.

I will primarily use the machine for garment sewing, but I've recently started quilting and embroidery too.

I have been using a Brother HE-120 which I purchased for under $500 from HSN several years ago. I'm quite impressed with this little machine. It is powerful and it's loaded with features that I have come to enjoy. I was surprised to discover that some of those features are only found on the top of line models by other manufacturers.

This machine is very small though, and it makes an annoying high pitched sound when I sew. Otherwise, it sews beautifully.

The features that I want on my next machine include:

Automatic thread cutter. (I love it!)
Dual feed (my HE-120 didn't claim to have it, but it evenly fed every fabric without a walking foot.)
Thread sensor
Needle up/down
Variable needle positions
Self threading needle
Extra pressure foot lift

I want my new machine to have at least 7 inches of work space to the right of the needle, but I would prefer more.

My HE-120 has a 4x4 embroidery size, and I would like for my new machine to have a 5x7 hoop size. I don't do that much embroidery though, so I'm willing to sacrifice the embroidery feature.

I just started researching for my new machine. Right now the Janome 9900 is the front runner. Hopefully I can find one locally to try out.

Please suggest some brands and models that are within my budget that have the features that I want.

Also, is there a country that makes higher or lower quality machines? I know that German, Swiss, and Swedish machines used to be known for their high quality, but what about now?

I read somewhere that Elnas are now made by Janome, and Baby Locks are made by Brother. Is that true? Are there other brands that are made by other manufacturers?

Please give me your advice. I need to make sure that I get a good quality machine.

Thanks everyone!

Jill

lgrande
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lgrande  Friend of PR
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In reply to JillRN1995 <<


Date: 6/2/13 10:05 AM

There's a thread here about the brand-new Pfaff Performance 5.0. It looks like a truly wonderful machine. Go to the video that's linked in that thread and watch the demo, you'll be impressed.
This is not a combo sewing/embroidery machine, but you already have the Brother for that.

------
Linda

Bernina 830LE - Brother Dreamweaver VQ3000 - Bernina B530 - Janome 6600P - Pfaff 1209 - Babylock Evolution - Janome 644 - Babylock Sashiko2 - Babylock BLCS-2

Sewinglady1947
Sewinglady1947
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Date: 6/2/13 10:28 AM

Recently I purchased a used Viking topaz 30. I bought from a dealer and have 2 years warrentry. I really don't think it was used very much. It has a 9 inch space to the right of the needle. New they cost around 3500. You might want to check reviews. I am satisfied with this machine.

------
sewing grammy

LynnRowe
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LynnRowe  Friend of PR
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BC CANADA
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In reply to JillRN1995 <<


Date: 6/2/13 10:40 AM

Sounds like you and a Pfaff Performance 5.0 are a match made in heaven. 10" harp space and everything on your list, plus a lot more...tapering, sideways motion, huge maxi stitches, auto hover/pivot....

No embroidery; this machine's a garment and quilting specialist. Definitely check out the video...and the machine in person if possible.

------
I heart Panzy, Pfaff Creative Performance, the sewing machine love of my life!
And Baby (Enlighten serger), Victor (BLCS), Rupert (Pfaff 2023-knits expert) Ash (B350SE-Artwork), Kee (B750QEE-Panzy's BFF), Georgie (B560-Kee's baby sister) and the Feather-Flock!

Most of all, I heart Woo (HimmyCat). Until we meet again, my beautiful little boy. I love you.

JillRN1995

JillRN1995
Intermediate
LA USA
Member since 7/10/05
Posts: 75
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Date: 6/2/13 11:18 AM

There is a Pfaff dealer in New Orleans, which is about 60 miles from me. I will call tomorrow to see if they have the Performance 5.0 in stock.

I might be able to see the Viking today at JoAnn Fabrics, and Allbrands is local for me, so they might have the Janome 9900.

Thanks guys! Please keep posting recommendations.

Does anyone know the dimensions of the Pfaff? I couldn't find it on their website. I have a very nice cabinet, which I hope to be able to use with my new machine. The Janome 9900 is a little too big for it. I might be able to get someone to cut the opening a little larger to make it fit, and then buy a Sew Steady insert to fit.

Jill

PattiAnnJ
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PattiAnnJ
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OH USA
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Date: 6/2/13 11:39 AM

I would add "quiet running" to the wish list, then visit and test drive as many brands and models as possible.

However, in my case, I bought TOL Babylock combo and it suits me just fine.

Doesn't matter who makes what or where. What does matter is that you are happy with the machine and the dealer.

------
I dont give them Hell, I just tell the truth about them and they think its Hell. Harry Truman

"Improvise, adapt and overcome." - Clint Eastwood/Heartbreak Ridge

2mulie
2mulie  Friend of PR
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MO USA
Member since 10/17/07
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Date: 6/2/13 12:47 PM

There is no way I would give up the true automatic threader on my Brother 1250D machine. If you have a Brother dealer you deserve to check them out. At your price level you could have a lot more features. (my Pfaff 7470 from delivers the IDT when needed for lingerie construction, but until Pfaff delivers on a true auto threader, they are out...(they are still using the same technology from 50 years ago for needle threading)

karen149
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karen149  Friend of PR
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Date: 6/2/13 2:35 PM

When you visit the Joann dealer, check out the Sapphire 875Q. It's the highest non-embroidery model that has all the features you are looking for minus the dual feed but you can get a wonderful Viking walking foot (extra,though you may get 30% off on the day you purchase a machine) that has interchangeable feet. It will work on your little Brother, too.

That new Pfaff 5.0 looks like a fantastic choice, too! Sometimes I miss having a Pfaff but I really like the ergonomic setup of my 875Q and no pecking at a screen with a stylus.

As far as Vikings, you may want to wait a bit if you are considering a combo machine. Viking is going to come out with a new machine soon and it looks like either an upgraded Topaz or a twin to the Pfaff Creative Performance.
-- Edited on 6/2/13 2:37 PM --

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