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Message Board > Sewing Machines > Ebay sewing machines ( Moderated by Sharon1952, EleanorSews)

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Ebay sewing machines
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Char in KS
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Char in KS
Advanced Beginner
KS USA
Member since 7/9/10
Posts: 75
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Date: 8/21/13 11:10 AM

I have started to look around for a new sewing machine. I want to take my time and really get something I will enjoy for a long time. But I have noticed in the mean time, I am disappointed with the machine I currently have and haven't been sewing much.

I came across a couple listing on ebay for some older Viking machines. I am only going to put a couple hundred for my max bid. I doubt I will get any at that amount but I feel aprehensive about putting more on a machine without a warranty. Both machines had good reviews on here. Anyone see anything that seems suspious?

platinum 750

lily 545 a

platinum 750 b

quiltingwolf
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quiltingwolf  Friend of PR
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MD
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In reply to Char in KS <<
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Date: 8/21/13 11:47 AM

The first one is probably you best bet judging from seller feedback. The one with 97% I wouldn't touch with a 10 foot pole. However you are taking a chance with any computerized machine you buy on ebay. You might be better off looking for a used mechanical if buying off ebay.
-- Edited on 8/21/13 11:49 AM --

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suesewserge
suesewserge
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Date: 8/21/13 12:10 PM

I don't think you can figure out what you will "really enjoy" without trying hands on. Many dealers have good deals on trade ins when people upgrade, even offering warranty and classes. A computerized machine in these price ranges could be good candidates to find used at dealers as people move up the line for added features, embroidery, etc.

As for feedback, may I suggest if someone doesn't have 100% check to see why. I had a couple negatives when something came up and I was unable to tend to some auctions and ship quickly. I refunded both, one item I refunded and still sent the item as it was low $ and I was trying to prevent negativity. But then life prevented me from selling much and because of eBay's 12 month rolling cycle of feedback my seller feedback rating dropped and dropped... i.e. when 2 items out of hundreds of positives were the #s it wasn't a huge deal and there'd been no more, but when my # items sold dropped to 10 in 12 months well then the % plummeted. Ebay kept lowering my selling limit telling me what a bad seller I was (yet out of hundreds of transactions I still had just these two issues, it was the 12 mos. deal that made it look bigger). If someone read the feedback they'd see positives following and the additional comment that I refunded and shipped anyway - but just looking at the % doesn't tell that story. I'm not defending this seller, but looking at one of the two negatives out of a couple hundred transactions I see on one the buyer wanted to cancel their purchase before shipping and seller didn't. Well user agreement clearly states you're entering into a contact, the seller doesn't have to cancel because the buyer changed their mind, etc. etc. Maybe it would have been accommodating but there are still fees involved. All I'm trying to say is it does not appear seller did anything wrong. So always check feedback and look for trends rather than isolated incident/s.

My general philosophy on buying there, i.e. sm's, is to estimate in my mind how much I'm willing to spend to service/fix it if need be and how much I'm willing to risk if the whole thing goes south.

sewme47
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sewme47
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IL USA
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Date: 8/21/13 1:07 PM

One of my biggest issues with eBay machines is packaging. Many sellers who are selling their own machine (vs those who buy and resell numerous machines) do not know how to safely package a sewing machine for shipping via UPS, FedEx, or USPS. I have received machines with nothing more than the carrying case plopped in a carton. My Featherweight was shipped with a few pieces of crumpled newspapers.

Ask the seller specifically about packaging. Best method is double-boxed with the original styrofoam surrounding the machine, and foam peanuts between the boxes.

------
A balanced diet is a cupcake in each hand.

PattiAnnJ
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PattiAnnJ
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OH USA
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Date: 8/21/13 1:15 PM

If these were the only three machines on Earth, then number 1 would be my choice. Number 2 is just that; they did not even test it with thread and there aren't any bobbins. Number 3 is too vague.

Best best is always to go with a dealer where you can walk in and give the machine a test drive.

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ThePadre
ThePadre
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PA USA
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In reply to Char in KS <<
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Date: 8/21/13 2:14 PM

The seller of the third machine (the platinum 750 b) has feedback that's too low to consider. Yes, 97.6% is too low. You want 99% or higher; some insist on 99.5% or better.

If you are confident these machines are what you like (or likewise confident you can sell them locally if you don't *really* like it after using it for a bit), then eBay can be great.

My requirements:
1. Buy from a seller with high feedback and a return policy. They need at least a total feedback of 40 or 50, with at least 20 or so from *selling*. More is better.

2. Packaging must be excellent. As noted above, the original foam and box double-boxed in peanuts is best. A good second is to encase each part of the machine (machine itself, foot controller, accessory box, etc.) in 3-4 layers of bubble wrap, and then placed in a box with plenty of peanuts. These items should NOT be in contact with each other in the box, or you'll find scratches and worse on the finish. There should be no protrusion (spool pins, etc.) that doesn't have cardboard protection to prevent it poking through the box or breaking off. Ideally, these things are removed and packed separately. Under no circumstances should the machine or its parts be left to move around inside the box.

3. The package needs to be insured, fully. Remind the seller that this is your expectation. Make sure the seller ships the box "signature required." Put a sign on your door that no packages should be left by the carrier, so that the driver is reminded you need to be there to sign for it. Refuse the package if the box shows anything other than minor handling damage.

4. Before purchase, closely look at every picture the seller provides. You should also save the photos onto your hard drive (right-click, save image as... usually). This way, if there's unexpected damage, you can compare to the photos. You want to save them locally in case the seller takes them down after shipping the unit.

If you're uncomfortable with this, then buy from a local seller.

Personally, most of my ebay experiences have been pretty good, so I'm more than willing to take a good deal there.

sewknitcrochet
sewknitcrochet
Advanced Beginner
USA
Member since 6/29/13
Posts: 143
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Date: 8/21/13 9:56 PM

Reputable seller that answers questions.
Packaged securely so the machine can't shift when in transit.
Honest about the sm - any problems.

-- Edited on 8/24/13 7:48 PM --

ajoseph
ajoseph  Friend of PR
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Date: 8/21/13 10:43 PM

feedback numbers do not tell the entire story. one needs to read the feedback. i have gotten negative feedback over the years on ebay......only one complained about the item purchased. which was exactly as described. i told her to return the item. she didn't want to. she wanted the item for half price. she put in a dispute with ebay. eBay read my description, took a look at the photos and denied the buyers claim. the other negative feed backs were left by folks that were less then honest and seeking something for nothing. reading the feedback is more important than the numbers.

ajoseph
ajoseph  Friend of PR
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In reply to Char in KS <<
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Date: 8/21/13 11:02 PM

armynewmexico: states that the machine was serviced, yet she also mentions a visual inspection, as if she is really unfamiliar with the machine and its history.
katiesew: gave the machine a basic test WITHOUT THREADUNG IT!!!!
onyxreserve: "serviced for resale by an authorized Husqvarna/Viking service technician and found to be in excellent condition" ask for a copy of the receipt from the service tech.

jilly cooper
jilly cooper
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AUSTRALIA
Member since 2/15/08
Posts: 500
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Date: 8/21/13 11:28 PM

I agree with the advice, packing is the number one thing for me,ask questions and if people say it has been serviced ask by whom.

I paid extra to have a bubble wrap and tight wads of paper packed around the machine in the case, but the seller didn't do it, I then had other people pack it and send on to me, thankfully it went well but I do wonder why people don't take more care in packing.

ETA. Feedback is my way of determing people's responses to things, a kind, considerate person who cares about resolving issues is more important to me than the percentage of feedback, like people have said, things can happen to reduce your feedback score. I also see whether people are edgy, irritable, nasty people who are best avoided IMHO.
-- Edited on 8/21/13 11:35 PM --

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