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|Pfaff:Ambition Essential (Sewing Machine)|
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Review rated Helpful
by 3 people Very Helpful
by 10 people
|About wexford |
|Member since: 4/9/12 |
|Reviews written: 17|
|Sewing skills:Advanced Beginner|
|Favored by: 2 people|
|sewing machines reviewed: 1|
|Posted on:||8/30/13 7:03 PM|
|Had this machine for:||1 week|
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- Needle Threader
- Needle Up/Down Setting
- One step buttonhole
- Drop-In bobbin
- Free Arm
- Adjustable Stitch Length and Width
- Adjustable Needle Position
- Auto Threading
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|What wexford likes about this machine|
Although I wasn't in the market for a new sewing machine, I was pleasantly surprised to win this one at a drawing at recent sewing expo that was in town.
Before winning the Pfaff, my newest sewing machine was one of the first computerized Vikings when they were still made in Sweden (bought in the mid 90's) and it still sews like a champ, but has always been terrible with knits and very lightweight fabrics, so I was excited about using this model which has built-in IDT for these fabrics, as well as the very occasional small quilting project.
When I won the machine, the expo folks asked me if I could wait to pick it up until the end of the show so they could keep it displayed, so I went to test out a model of my new machine in the Pfaff booth as well as compare its features to other machines in the Pfaff line. The folks at the Pfaff booth were more than happy to give me a trade-in credit for the Ambition ($799 MSRP) to step up to a higher model Ambition or move into the Expression line.
Since I am primarily a garment sewer, the only features that seemed like nice extras to me were the automatic snips, bobbin sensor and button control presser foot lift, but these only came on the Quilt Expression 4.2 and was *triple the MSRP* of the Ambition. Given that I've lived without these features until now, I didn't feel like they were worth writing a big check for.
So I've been sewing on this for a week and it's been a good experience so far. Here's what I like:
1. IDT - this rocks with both matching seams perfectly and handling fine knits. I threw two projects at the machine - a patchwork denim sample to test matching seams and a tissue weight knit wrap sweater and the IDT performed as advertised on both. I have mostly used my serger for my knit seams, but that isn't always ideal, so I am *thrilled* with the Pfaff's performance on this. The IDT is super easy to engage and disengage compared to attaching a separate walking foot.
2. Variety of stitches - the machine has 110 stitches and they look pretty nice stitched out. I doubt I will use many of them, but who knows?
3. Lighting - it's not stadium lighting, but much brighter than my old Viking.
4. Made in Taiwan, not PRC. I think Taiwan builds better quality electronics in general than mainland China.
5. See through bobbin case. Since this doesn't have an electronic sensor, it's nice to easily see when the bobbin thread is running low.
What wexford does not like about this machine
There are just a couple of things that I don't like about the machine:
1. The Pfaff presser feet are harder to snap on and off than the Viking feet and many of them don't seem as nice, for example the invisible zipper foot (not included with machine) is plastic and the blind hem foot is too complicated. They are generally less expensive, but I'd rather pay more for better feet.
2. The automatic buttonholer works fine, but it feels flimsier than what I am used to and the stitch quality is fair to good, but not great. I may need to play around with settings to see if I can improve it.
3. No speed control. This is the only feature downgrade for me, and I wish it had it. I don't use it often, but it is nice to have.
4. Side lift for presser foot. All of my other machines are back lifts, so this is just something to get used to. I believe this is because of the IDT, so it is a worthy sacrifice.
In summary, this is a very nice machine for its retail price. Even if I had not won it, its hard to beat the price/performance and the IDT if you sew knits is a clear differentiator in my mind from other brands of machines.
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