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Which sewing machine?
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Wayne Teipen
(wamyteipen) - F

Locale: midwest
Which sewing machine? on 07/09/2007 21:22:17 MDT Print View

I'm looking to start making my own lightweight gear. Does anyone have any suggestions/advice on a good, inexpensive sewing machine?

Joseph Williams
(deadogdancing) - F

Locale: SW England
Janome, 99 pounds on 07/10/2007 04:26:05 MDT Print View

I use a janome machine, bottom of the range, which, at 99 pounds (double it for dolars), was the cheapest new one that wasn't obviously crap. All good so far, although I wish the reverse lever would lock in place so I could have both hands free when sewing backwards...

I'm sure the experts on the board will be able to share more detailed desiderata with you...

second hand can be cheaper if you're patient enough, and take along someone who knows what to look for

Sarah Kirkconnell
(sarbar) - F

Locale: In the shadow of Mt. Rainier
Re: Which sewing machine? on 07/10/2007 10:58:05 MDT Print View

You can pick up a decent entry level Singer at many Walmarts and similar for around $100. Another cheap way is to visit Sewing machine shops (the kind that sell good machines, and vacumns...not fabric shops!) and see if they have any refurbished trade ins!

All you really need is a machine that goes forward and back for gear with maybe a zig zag stitch thrown in.

Btw, learn your fabrics-some need regular needles, other ball point needles :-)

Joe Federici
(need2boat) - F

Locale: North East
Re: Re: Which sewing machine? on 07/11/2007 10:19:43 MDT Print View

I love my Bernina but your not going to find a good used one for what a k-mart singer will cost.

I would buy a chep unit and upgrade if your get into it. I really like a adjustable presser foot if you can find one with it. It helps when dealing with thin fabrics and if you start to deal with insulation.


Michael Davis
(mad777) - F

Locale: South Florida
Re:Which sewing machine? on 07/11/2007 10:47:33 MDT Print View

I bought a Brother for $80 from Walmart and it has served me well. I doesn't do too many "fancy" stitches but I don't either. As long as I remember to put the foot down before sewing (whoops), it performs without a hitch.

The only thing I have noticed that bothers me for making outdoor gear is that it doesn't seem to like multiple layers of really thick fabric. This hasn't been a real problem for me yet but it does have the advantage of making me stay with my lightweight objectives!

Joe Federici
(need2boat) - F

Locale: North East
take a look at Juki on 07/11/2007 20:26:10 MDT Print View

I'd also take a look at a Juki. They have some machines starting around 199.00 that are very nice.

Juki isn't a really big name in the US but they make machines for many of the bigger names like Bernina, Singer and others.