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Forum > Sewing Machines > Upgrade machine or get a coverstitch? ( Moderated by Sharon1952, EleanorSews)

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Upgrade machine or get a coverstitch?
Deciding between a Babylock Elizabeth and Janome 1000CPX
newmama
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newmama  Friend of PR
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Date: 5/13/12 2:47 PM

I currently am a Janome girl and use a Jem Gold 660 for sewing. I have a Janome serger and the 350e embroidery machine as well.

I am in the fortunate position where I can buy a new machine.

I thought I was going to get a coverstitch machine (the Janome 1000CPX), but started dreaming big and thought about getting a nicer sewing machine as well. While I love my little Jem, she is VERY basic--12 stitch choices and buttonholes. I have had my machine for about 7 or 8 years and have been sewing as much as I can for the past 3 years. I've sewn denim, knits, 1/2" foam (though that was tough because it didn't feed) and bunch of other kinds of fabric on my little Jem and she's handled them all beautifully. The only limitations I have encountered are that I'd like to be able to do a satin & blanket stitch for machine applique, and I'd like to be able to reposition the needle for easier edgestitching (though I recently got my hands on a nice edgestitching foot, so this isn't so important). Oh, and I can't bartack because the stitch length/width isn't adjustable.

I started researching computerized machines with more features than what my Jem has, and test-drove a Babylock recently. I am interested in getting the Babylock Elizabeth (previously the Decorator's Choice 2) if I get a new sewing machine.

I don't sew a ton of knits (for a variety of reasons), but feel like I would sew them a lot more if I got a coverstitch machine. I have spent a lot of time trying to get a nice finish on the knits I have sewn, partly because it takes practice and partly because twin stitching on my Jem can be a bit rough. My Jem can do twin-needle stitching, but I have to fuss with the settings to get them right, and have ended up having to adjust the bobbin tension to get enough stretch in the seam.

Despite big dreams, I can only get one machine I am looking for opinions to make sure I've thought everything out. Do you think I should upgrade my sewing machine or should I purchase a coverstitch machine instead?

Misc. info:
I believe I would get a lot of use out of either machine.
I like to sew for my children.
The cost isn't an issue in deciding between the two machines.

TIA!
angie

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angie
http://danikate-designs.blogspot.com/

LynnRowe
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In reply to newmama <<


Date: 5/13/12 2:55 PM

Coverstitch machine! They are fabulous for wovens, too, not just knits. The finish just cannot be beat, making hemming a FUN thing to do. I know...hard to believe. But true.

Also, with the chain stitch function, your CS can do wonderful basting that's super easy to pull out when done. Just another excuse...I mean reason...for adding a CS to your herd.

THEN go get a new SM.

Ohhh more excuses...I mean reasons...for a CS machine; you sew for your kids...Who want RTW styles, I bet. Which usually have CS hems, and hems that can easily be let down as kids grow, such as with CS hems... Give me time, I'll think of more excuses. I mean reasons.
-- Edited on 5/13/12 2:58 PM --

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

newmama
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Date: 5/13/12 10:30 PM

Thanks, Lynn, for your opinion. I do think the basting sounds like a wonderful feature...

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angie
http://danikate-designs.blogspot.com/

sewsally
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sewsally  Friend of PR
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Date: 5/13/12 11:12 PM

I think you should upgrade your sewing machine from what you said. The twin needle may work better on your new sewing machine too. Maybe you can test drive it with a twin needle on some of your own knit fabric. You may need a stabilizer.

newmama
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In reply to sewsally <<


Date: 5/14/12 8:26 AM

I've been thinking that an upgrade will provide better stitching for knits, as well as all the other great features. I did test drive some of the knit stitches (though not a twin needle) and was really excited about them.

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angie
http://danikate-designs.blogspot.com/

Jodi B.
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Jodi B.  Friend of PR
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Date: 5/14/12 8:55 AM

My vote would be for the coverhem machine as well -- simply because I love mine so much. Also, the coverstitch machine opens up new things you can do, while the new sewing machine mostly upgrades things you're already able to do.

deesews
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deesews
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Date: 5/14/12 9:53 AM

My serger has coverstitch, and I STILL have a coverhem machine because this way I don't have to change all the setup every time I need to hem something. I got it when I had a basic sewing machine like yours and never looked back. Four years later, I upgraded my sewing machine, and would do it in that order again.

The plus side to a new SM is possibly more power to get over humps and handle thick stuff. But the coverhem finish is superior to the twin needle.

To save money and space, you can use an old cone thread or Gutermann spool as a base and hand wrap thread from a single cone or spool to accommodate all the positions on the coverhemmer.

Just be aware that every machine you have means a separate maintenance expense. But it also gives you backup when one is in the shop.

You can put deco thread in the looper and do surface embellishment with the chainstitch, too.

LynnRowe
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In reply to newmama <<


Date: 5/14/12 10:48 AM

if I sew a knit without a serger, I use a straight stitch (do not "stretch while sewing"). Then I would use the CS for hemming.

A CS does a better hem than twin needles. I've sewn a ton of knits, haven't owned a RTW top in years, have sewn for decades, and have never used twin needles (or zig zag stitches).

If you're deciding between a new SM for better twin needle hemming, versus a CS, the CS is the clear winner here. You're more than welcome to come to my place and try mine...you'd be an easy convert.

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

newmama
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Date: 5/14/12 7:53 PM

Thanks ladies--that's a lot of support for the coverstitch machine!

I have thought about this a ton, and definitely appreciate the opinions.

I am going to go ahead and upgrade my machine for now. I hope to be going back to work in the next few months, maybe I can get a nice paying job and get a coverstitch machine in the next year or so. I think I will get more use out of a regular sewing machine until then.

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angie
http://danikate-designs.blogspot.com/

newmama
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In reply to deesews <<


Date: 5/14/12 7:54 PM

I really appreciated your opinion as you seem to have been in a similar situation, especially because you said you'd do it all again. When I get a coverstitch machine in the future, I will be sure to look up your tips again :)

------
angie
http://danikate-designs.blogspot.com/

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