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Bernina dilemma
A new Janome or an used Bernina?
ginaT

ginaT
Intermediate
Member since 4/3/06
Posts: 186
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Date: 5/7/06 9:55 PM

My DH has given me the money to buy a new machine.
Would love a Bernina but i find the new models quite expensive.

I like the Janome 66000P and 4900QC and was busy deciding as there is a difference in price when i spotted a Bernina Activa 140 on eBay and TWO Virtuosa 150QE's.

Very rare to get these models running at the same time (Uk site) and i am very tempted to bid.

What do you all think?
A new machine for 600 pounds plus or a used Bernina for about 400 plus pounds?

AND then theres a Pfaff Creative 7570 starting bid 300 pounds ----------- heeelp!!!

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ginaT

Have three beautiful grandaughters and a baby grandson

Lilibet
Lilibet
AUSTRALIA
Member since 8/7/04
Posts: 689
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Date: 5/7/06 11:12 PM

When I got back into sewing a couple of years ago I thought it time to update from my 30 year old Elna SP. I'd always had a yen for a Bernina and when I spotted a used Bernina 1630 on ebay I bought it for a good price. It is a good machine and makes fabulous buttonholes. It has embroidery capabilities which I thought might be fun to play with.
I never have used the embroidery function because I just don't wear that sort of clothing and I need a goal to encourage me to learn something new. The 1630 has wide feed dogs to accomadate the embroidery and because of that, it's not as easy to sew accurately on narrow seams, especially areas like the point of a collar.
I subsequently found a used Pfaff 7570 which I absolutely love and use all the time. The 7570 has narrow feed dogs and narrow feet which make it much, much easier to use for normal sewing. The IDT is brilliant for matching stripes or for very long seams in curtains and I rarely sew without it on. The buttonholes are fiddlier than the Berninas automatic ones but still pretty good and heaps better than my old Elnas. It also has embroidery capabilities which I'm told give great results, perhaps one day I'll feel inspired to try them out.
Anyway the point of this long post is, don't get hung up on brand names like I did. Look at each machine from the point of view of, how well it will perform for the sewing you do most of. I'm still thinking about whether to keep the Bernina just for easy buttonholes or whether to sell it.
Good luck with whatever you choose.

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A room of my own, at last.

Terri Smith
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Terri Smith  Friend of PR
Intermediate
CA USA
Member since 9/16/04
Posts: 96
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Date: 5/7/06 11:39 PM

I was machine shopping just last week, and ended up buying two machines on line! Both of them Bernina's. I alrady have a Activa 145S, and picked up a used 009 DCC coverstitch only machine for half of retail from a post here in the classifieds. Hope it gets deliveredwhen promised. But, the point of all of this is, I also bid on a Bernina 1200DA serger. I had been to my local dealer, and was overwhelmed and undersold. They did not seem to care what I bought. So I stopped bidding on ebay and felt I should just let it go. If I really wanted a new machine I would buy it when I had all the money for a new one from my dealer. Well, I was out bid on ebay. Okay, I could handle that. But the next morning I had an email from the seller who said he had TWO machines, and wanted to know if I would take the completely unopened, brand new 1200DA machine for my previous highest bid. I said: Absolutely! I felt like it was the right thing to do because I got a second chance and it was way below what my dealer could offer. A brand new machine, with the warranty, still in the box, and with shipping even less than what the high bidder paid for the first one.

Personally, I think you should weigh what you really want, and what you can really have. If you can have the machine of your dreams because it is on Ebay, go for it. If it is NOT what you really want, wait and buy your dream, regardless of price, when you are ready. Life is too short to give up what we want for what is available today. If we really want it, it will come to us, in second chances maybe, when we are ready.

sabrinatf

sabrinatf
Intermediate
Member since 5/21/05
Posts: 279
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Date: 5/8/06 10:18 AM

I think you really have to know what you want to sew and buy the machine based on those features. If you get sucked into a specific brand rep. you might be missing out on a fabulous machine at a great price from a brand you might never have considered. When I bought my computerized machine a few years ago, I researched for months. I test drove every brand. I read tons of reviews and consumer reports. I went into thinking the only machine to own was a bernina or a viking. What I learned is evey manufacturer has machines in their lines that are very good and some that are not so good. I also learned that often time one manufacturer make the same machine for another brand for less. Like Janome makes machines for kenmore that are exactly the same feature wise (and apparently quality) as the machine they sell under the janome name for considerably less. I know that brothers makes some of the babylock machines...and so on. Anyways after I sewed on them all and compared what I wanted to do, where I might want to go with my sewing and features I valued now and for the future. I made my decision and I feel like it was a good one and the machine has served me well.
-- Edited on 5/8/06 10:19 AM --

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Umm...I was told there would be no math on this exam.
http://mylilsliceofpie.blogspot.com/

casken
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casken
Intermediate
AB CANADA
Member since 12/6/04
Posts: 700
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Date: 5/8/06 11:49 AM

Personally, I would only purchase a machine from a dealer whether it's new or used. If something goes wrong, you can easily take it back to the dealer and they can fix the problem. I bought my Pfaff 797 serger used and my dealer offered me a one-year warranty. You really do not know what you are getting off Ebay. I have purchased many things off Ebay but when it comes to something that costs so much money I don't feel comfortable with buying online. I know there are many members who have purchased online and they have been happy but you just never know.

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My Blog: www.iocchelli.com/just-sew-it/

mamacita
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mamacita  Friend of PR
Intermediate
NM USA
Member since 8/31/05
Posts: 129
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Date: 5/8/06 12:25 PM

I agree with Casken...go to a dealer. Sometimes you can find a great machine that has been turned in for an upgrade to a fancier model and you can get a real deal, with a dealer to stand behind the machine. This happened to me last year....my Pfaff had maybe been used once, everything was still in plastic in the accessory box! the lady traded it in for a fancy embroidery machine. My two cents worth about machine brands....I have several Berninas...I think they make the best buttonholes! But nothing beats the Pfaff with IDT for garment sewing. If you sew alot of slippery fabrics or stretchy knits, that even feed keeps everything together so beautifully. If you don't need all the fancy computerized stuff, check out the Pfaff 1525...bottom of the line mechanical machine that does have IDT. It is a honey for the money!

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mamacita

twistedangel
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twistedangel
Advanced
CA USA
Member since 7/18/05
Posts: 544
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In reply to ginaT


Date: 5/8/06 4:16 PM

About ebay... be careful! Please!

There are so many SM scams (esp Bernina)... PLUS you don't get a warantee or lessons.

I had this dilemma also, but I was lucky to find a 180 trade in at the Janome dealer. Not because of price, but because I'm cheap... :D

I say, test drive if you can! You may find your "personality" better suited for one or the other.

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My website: http://www.twistedangel.us.com

ginaT

ginaT
Intermediate
Member since 4/3/06
Posts: 186
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In reply to Terri Smith


Date: 5/8/06 8:29 PM

"Life is too short to give up what we want for what is available today"

Oh how true Terri.I think that will be my mantra from now on as i always seem to 'make do' with just that when it comes to me.

Thank you all for your wonderfull replies,i really appreciate it.
Its so long since i upgraded that my head is buzzing with all the research i had to do because of the many models now available.

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ginaT

Have three beautiful grandaughters and a baby grandson

MareeAlison
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MareeAlison
Intermediate
AUSTRALIA
Member since 6/6/05
Posts: 2618
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In reply to ginaT


Date: 5/8/06 8:35 PM

Gina - why don't you visit your Bernina dealier. A lot of 153QEs and other recent models have been traded in on the 440. If it's anything like my store, the trade-ins are in very good condition.

I bought a new 153 QE last year for about $1000 less that the original price because it was superseded. I wouldn't have bought it at the full price. I was looking at the 140 but Bernina did say that the 140 was solely made in Asia while the 153's inners were from Switzerland and it was cased in Asia. Not sure how much difference that makes. I also liked the really big wrap round light on the 153 model and it "sounded better" when you sewed on it.

Enjoy the quandry and don't rush in. It's a lovely choice to have but you have to live with the choice. Do what others have suggested and try out the Janome and Berninas and choose what features you want and which one fits you best.

What a fantastic "chore" to have.

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Maree - Sydney, Australia

Kanjelab
Kanjelab
Intermediate
PA
Member since 4/20/06
Posts: 143
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In reply to ginaT


Date: 5/9/06 1:57 PM

After reading a lot of reviews (in this web site), it seemed like Bernina's got the best reviews. Janomes had a lot of issues with tension and pesky bobbin cases.

The only negative thing I read about the Bernina (145S) was that if you plan to do a lot of machine quilting, the size of the machine doesn't give you a lot of space to quilt on, but you can work around that--just roll tight. I have a friend who has a Bernina and she LOVES it.

I have a couple of friends with Pfaff's and they're really happy with them also,

So I'd say #1 Bernina #2 Pfaff and Last choice Janome.

I have a Viking 750 (it was on sale).

Good luck and happy sewing

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