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Message Board > Quilters' Corner > Walking foot quality question ( Moderated by Sharon1952)

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Walking foot quality question
mistyknits
mistyknits
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Date: 7/5/13 0:06 AM

I recently purchased a used Bernina Activa 140. I am trying to get used to the machine, but boy is it fussy! I am considering buying a walking foot and wonder if there are major quality differences between name brand and generic.

I am posting in this forum, as I thought quilters may use this foot more. I mostly sew garments. This Bernina doesn't like slippery fabric at all (or sewing over seams ...). I thought a walking foot may help. I am resisting the urge to pack it up and get my basic mechanical Husqvarna Viking out. I think if I can figure out it's quirks, that it will be a better machine. I bought from a private party and have discovered both nearby Bernina stores will not allow me to sit in on the new owners classes (I did offer to pay), since I didn't buy from them (I do understand their reasoning).

I searched both here and google about the walking foot, but cannot find the differences. Any help appreciated.

Sharon1952
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Sharon1952  Friend of PR
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In reply to mistyknits <<


Date: 7/5/13 8:34 AM

I would suggest you also post this in the Sewing Machines section. More people are liable to see it there. Have you searched the Sewing Machine section of reviews for this model? Perhaps you could PM a member who has reviewed the machine.

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Sewing: A creative mess is better than tidy idleness. ~Author Unknown

Kwaaked
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Date: 7/5/13 9:27 AM

Not sure about Bernia machines specifically, but I own a generic walking foot made and one from Brother for low shank machines, and the generic works better then the brand name one does.

I didn't purchase either foot at a local dealer, one I got from a gal that dealt with vintage machines specifically and the other I got from a retired dealer that was liquidating their inventory online. The only difference I actually see is the red "Brother" on the feet.

Since the generic was made to fit on the vintage feed dogs, it works better on the machines, but it also works better on the 70s Kenmore and my mothers Brother PE 700 series then the modern one.

My local dealer sells the generics with the name brand ones and they are known to be persnickety about quality, and my Elna dealer (a few hours away) has all generics in the store where you have to special order the name brand ones.

Learn To Sew
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In reply to mistyknits <<


Date: 7/5/13 9:40 AM

What kinds of fabric are you sewing with? It might not be the walking foot you need, but another foot instead. If you have a Bernina, only buy Bernina feet. They are made for the machines and worth every penny they cost. Sure, they are more expensive, but really make the job much easier.

------
I am a Quilter at heart. I love to play with fabrics, patterns and colors. Recently I have discovered I enjoy doing applique. I love making pictures. Using a sewing machine is much easier than counted cross stitch or oil painting for me. I enjoy landscape quilting as well. I am working on my first applique project in the spring of 2014.
Bernina 630, my main machine
Pfaff 2036, my class machine
Babylock Molly
Bernina 1200DA serger
Unique Sewing Cabinet 450L

mistyknits
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Date: 7/5/13 10:50 AM

So far, I've made 2 tops from quilting cotton and a pair of pajama pants from a vintage percale sheet. It really didn't like the sheet. It was a bit slippery (smooth from repeated washings). I am using the #1 foot. I have adjusted the foot pressure with no improvement. I fear that if it doesn't like calico, I don't have much hope for denim. I want to like this machine, but it is being so fussy. I am determined though.

mistyknits
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In reply to Kwaaked <<


Date: 7/5/13 10:52 AM

You have experienced what I was wondering about. Thanks for your advice!

SandiMacD
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Date: 7/6/13 6:40 AM

I had a Bernina 430. I also do mainly garments. I gave it to my daughter and now have a BL and Pfaff. I struggled to find the perfect B foot - got nearly every foot and accessary all B brand. The walking foot was nice for quilting fabric for vests.

As soon as I used the BL J foot I was hooked. I have visibility and ability to bring the thread through the foot and can use the foot to gauge 1/2, 1/4, and 1/8 or just see through to place where needed. I would never go back to B machines/feet for garments.

The I got a Paff. Same thing. Feet are perfect. They make an uneven foot for hemming jeans. The standard foot is ideal for garment seams. Plus the IDT is SO much better than a walking foot or pressure adjustment. You have visibility and control. It doesn't eat fabrics either.

Good luck on your decision.

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sewing brings joy and meaning to my life...

nancy2001
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Date: 7/6/13 7:19 AM

I have used both the brand name walking foot on my modern Viking and a good quality, generic walking foot on my vintage Singer. Both feet work equally well.

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No sewing project is ever a complete success nor a total failure.

mistyknits
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In reply to SandiMacD <<


Date: 7/6/13 4:26 PM

I do have a funny feeling that this bernina and I aren't going to mesh. My Viking worked so well until I took it in for service. It's never been the same. So in a fit of frustration about my viking not being the same after service (it had a perfect stitch-top and bobbin were indistinguishable...sigh), I thought a bernina was a good choice. I wanted a machine that did a gorgeous straight stitch and a good buttonhole. The buttonhole on the bernina is great, but the straight stitch isn't that great. I hate to spend more money on another machine...

RMJ
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Date: 7/6/13 6:06 PM

I have a Bernina Activa 240, with walking foot. What do you mean, it doesn't like slippery fabrics? What happens?

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