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Forum > Sewing Machines > Fab-U-Motion for Pfaff vs Bernina B550 w/ BSR ( Moderated by Sharon1952, EleanorSews)

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Fab-U-Motion for Pfaff vs Bernina B550 w/ BSR
Need some opinions!
lelliebunny
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lelliebunny  Friend of PR
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Date: 6/18/13 0:51 AM

As I was doing some FMQ on a baby quilt today, I was thinking about stitch regulators. I know I don't have a lot of options, but I am debating buying the Fab-U-Motion with Stitch Regulator for my Pfaff Creative Performance or potentially buying a B550 to get the BSR. The price difference is significant (obviously).

I know I will lose harp space if I get the B550, but people seem pretty back and forth on the value/quality of the stitch regulator that will work on the Pfaff. I have played with the BSR before and liked it. I could potentially trade in my B350SE towards the 550.

Thoughts either way?
-- Edited on 6/18/13 11:35 AM --

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it doesn't matter what type of sewing you do. you are sewing, and sewing is good.

tericloth
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tericloth
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In reply to lelliebunny <<
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Date: 6/18/13 2:04 AM

I have a FabUMotion that I have used with my Pfaff 2056. I really like how easy it is to move the quilt around on it. Much less stress on my hands (and neck muscles)

I work with a group that makes lap size quilts for charity; and have had so much practice with free motion that I don't feel I need to use it anymore. In fact I am thinking I ought to sell it instead of letting it gather dust.

Investing in the FabUMotion would be far less costly than getting a new Bernina; as far as I know, they work about the same.

Teri

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Sewing with a view of the swaying palms....

lelliebunny
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lelliebunny  Friend of PR
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Date: 6/18/13 11:41 AM

Anybody else have any thoughts/recommendations?

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it doesn't matter what type of sewing you do. you are sewing, and sewing is good.

Cat n Bull
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Cat n Bull  Friend of PR
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Date: 6/18/13 12:08 PM

The very first project I did with my new PCP was free motion quilting, and I found it to free motion so beautifully and easily I can't imagine using something else!

I have never seen the fabu-motion things, and I can't figure out how a stitch regulator actually works. HOW can the machine set stitch length if YOU are the one feeding the fabric????

I use the dynamic spring foot when I FMQ and for embroidery, I LOVE that foot!

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Cathryn

Cat n Bull
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Cat n Bull  Friend of PR
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In reply to tericloth <<


Date: 6/18/13 12:17 PM

Quote: tericloth
I work with a group that makes lap size quilts for charity; and have had so much practice with free motion that I don't feel I need to use it anymore.

This makes me thinks of it as training wheels for FMQ. ;-)

I still don't get HOW they work! Are the feed dogs still dropped like regular free motion quilting? If the user is the one moving the fabric and controlling the speed, HOW can the machine tell it's time for the next stitch? What about when you switch directions and make curvy shapes, how does it know? Does it slow the machine down?

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Cathryn

SouthernStitch
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In reply to Cat n Bull <<


Date: 6/18/13 1:09 PM

Yes, the dogs are down. The Bernina has a sensor of some sort. It has two modes. One where you move the fabric around, and that activates it, and it continues stitching as long as you are moving the fabric. It beeps if you go way too fast. The other mode, you use the presser foot. I prefer the first mode, where you move the fabric and don't use the presser foot.
Currently, it's the only way I can FMQ. I tried manually and it was a disaster. Just a learning curve I'm sure, but not one I have time for currently.
I would test them both before buying a new machine. The Pfaff regulator may be just perfect for you.

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Bernina 780, and 530
Juki TL2010
Babylock Evolution
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When life gives you green velvet curtains, make a green velvet dress.

tericloth
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In reply to Cat n Bull <<


Date: 6/18/13 1:23 PM

Yeah I guess you could call it "training wheels"

How it works is this: you do drop the feed dogs; and you are controlling how fast you move the fabric, and where. The stitch regulator adjusts the speed of the needle to how fast you are moving the fabric. In other words, the faster you move the fabric, the faster the needle goes up and down. If you slow down your movement, the needle speed slows down too.

These stitch regulators take some getting used to. Even the Bernina one. Some people like them. Others, like myself, find it just as easy to work without it.

The thing that is nice about the FabUMotion is that it is so easy to move the quilt around because the table is on ball bearings. That feature is very nice. However the available area to work on without shifting the quilt is fairly small.

If I had a long arm machine on a frame, I would want a stitch regulator. Absolutely. Why? I'm not sure. Maybe the difference is between moving the machine itself to free-motion, vs. moving the fabric.

To each his own.

Teri

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Sewing with a view of the swaying palms....

clotheshorse
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In reply to lelliebunny <<


Date: 6/18/13 1:34 PM

The Fab-U-Motion sounds interesting. I've recently been checking out stitch regulators online and hadn't come across this one. I have chronic neck/back pain, so the idea of easily being able to move a quilt through my machine, in addition to the stitch regulation, sounded great! I found a discussion about this on the Quilters Board, and a few people mentioned being very disappointed in it's ability to move fabric. Apparently it doesn't work well with anything more than a practice sandwich or very small quilt due to the weight of a larger quilt creating drag. Have you tried one yet?

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Viking D1, 1+, Pfaff 7570, Singer 503 Rocketeer, 66, 15-91, 301, Featherweight 6 Flock, Babylock Enlighten & CS and Pfaff Creative Performance

Cat n Bull
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In reply to SouthernStitch <<


Date: 6/18/13 1:43 PM

Thanks for the explanation SS! I did a little searching and Leah Day explains it pretty well. (She also called it training wheels! LOL)

Good stitch regulator explanation

It is definitely NOT something I'd be interested in, because either with it or without it the PROCESS of learning to FMQ is the same:

In order to get even stitches you MUST learn to coordinate your hands with the speed of the machine.

With a stitch regulator, IT controls the speed of the machine, and you still have to coordinate your hands to it. You will STILL get uneven stitches if your hands move too fast for the setting. The computer that runs it is never going to be able to adjust as fast as your hands are able to move.

Without a stitch regulator, YOU control the speed of the machine with the foot controller. You will get uneven stitches if your hands and the speed are too out of sync.

You can also set your machine's speed and use the start/stop button instead of the foot controller to get a steady constant speed, but for machines that will not allow you to use the foot controller AND the start stop button, that may be challenging when it comes time to stop! I HAVE to slow my machine down when I FMQ, but still need to option to have my speed variable.

The Babylock version is pretty interesting, I have no idea how much it is but it looks pretty easy to set up and is not cumbersome. I LOVE the remote control, that is pretty cool. But it seems like just a speed regulator, which you can set yourself without the need for it. To me it looks a remote version of the start/stop button. I also don't know what machines it is compatible with.

I don't work well with such strictly limited confines, I NEED to be able to slow down/speed up when I FMQ, especially since I am still new to freehand designs. I need to be able to slow down and think about my next direction then go faster when I got it.

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Cathryn

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In reply to lelliebunny <<
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Date: 6/18/13 4:20 PM

I have the bernina 550 and am unimpressed with the BSR. I find it much easier to free motion quilt without it. So, it doesn't seem worth the price of the 550 for that, but if you are looking for a 5.5 stitch width machine to partner with your PCP it is a nice machine. I'm doing the opposite order: bought the 550 last year, but recently ordered a PCP, partly for more harp space. I still like pfaff's IDT better than using the bernina walking foot (although it's an excellent walking foot compared to others I've used).

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