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Long arm machines....

Tips, Suggestions, and General Discussions about quilting by machine.
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morngsky
Posts: 1
Joined: Fri Mar 01, 2013 2:01 am

Long arm machines....

Post by morngsky » Fri Mar 01, 2013 2:06 am

so...how do I get the nerve to buy a longarm machine...any two cents on what machines to buy...anyone know where all the used machines are stored? and how to do "small" quilts projects to get expirience quilting when all the huge quilts are so appealing....thank you for lettin me vent my insecurities about machine quilting....lol...toodles Dawn

12stepquilter
Posts: 2063
Joined: Sat Dec 08, 2007 1:34 pm

Re: Long arm machines....

Post by 12stepquilter » Sat Mar 02, 2013 3:42 am

Dawn, it took me three years of intense research, pages of reading material and going to shows to look at and test drive machines. I finally set my sights on an Innova by ABM International and have never looked back. I love love love my machine. Take your time and do your research. You will be glad you did.
Rhonda

sidesaddles
Posts: 247
Joined: Sun Apr 13, 2008 2:45 am

Re: Long arm machines....

Post by sidesaddles » Sat Mar 02, 2013 8:31 am

I agree,research and test drive several before deciding.
I grabbed the first thing I saw and regretted it. Now that I
learned the hard way, I am buying what I want and need.

Pat in NM
editing because I can't type today lol

User avatar
purrfect-lady
Posts: 19731
Joined: Mon Jul 07, 2008 4:01 am

Re: Long arm machines....

Post by purrfect-lady » Sat Mar 09, 2013 6:59 am

I bought my first one on impulse, too. and regretted it within a few months. It was a short-arm with a flimsy aluminum frame. It took me two years before I bought my Nolting. There were a lot of questions I didn't know to ask until after I had used the machine for a while.

1. Where are the used machines? check out e-bay, Craig's List, and users' groups. Almost every brand has a users' group chat forum like ours and they usually have a section with used machines for sale. Also ask at quilt shops (many have bulletin boards) and if they have guilds, ask their members.

2. Will I need to get behind the machine? Yes, sometimes you will. This is why, unless you have room to position the machine permanently out from a wall, you may want to consider castors on your frame to allow you to move it freely back and forth.

3. do I need room at the ends of the frame. Yes. You need as much room as it takes for you to scoot to the back. also, to stand at the business side of your machine for threading, cleaning, etc. Usually the right end of the frame. We have 2 feet on the right and the left is only a few inches from the wall.

4. How much sewing space is there really? We now have a 17" throat. We wish it was 24". As you quilt, you roll the finished part of the quilt up on the take-up roller which runs through the throat of the machine. This creates bulk and lessens your sewing space. by the end of a quilt, we are down to 10" of room to sew. This limits the. patterns we can use. (I say "we" because my husband quilts, too.) When I had my shortarm, my space got down to 3".

5. how big a quilt can I do on my LA? We've found that we can do a quilt about 1 foot less in width than the length of the frame. We have an 11-ft frame. We can do a quilt up to about 10-ft wide or 120".

6. What about my back? Ouch! I'm 5' tall. My husband is 5'7". We spent the extra and got hydraulic lifts on our frame to save our backs. It was worth it.

Others have said to try out every machine you can. Please do that. I found that the brand I thought I wanted was so heavy that it torqued my back to move it around and after the trial session I was in pain. My second choice was so light it felt, and sounded, cheap. For us, the Nolting was right. But I think most of them are great and it just depends on what fits you. Don't forget to check out how they run their customer service. You'll want that from time to time. Also, do they offer classes?

I wish you well as you get started. It's fun and addictive!

Mary z

rhill85053
Posts: 3
Joined: Sun Mar 10, 2013 10:30 am

Re: Long arm machines....

Post by rhill85053 » Sun Mar 10, 2013 10:39 am

I have a Gammill, older model/not computerized, and would like to know if anyone has had success retrofitting a VERY reliable non-computerized machine to computerized? Also, can an existing table be set up to be motorized to compliment the computer feed?

Nadine2007
Posts: 5085
Joined: Fri Jan 05, 2007 4:32 pm

Re: Long arm machines....

Post by Nadine2007 » Tue Mar 12, 2013 11:38 am

I have the Gammill Classic Plus I love my machine! Not interested in the computerized machine's they just cost tooooo much! Bev

somari
Posts: 28
Joined: Thu Jul 23, 2015 10:08 am

Re: Long arm machines....

Post by somari » Thu Jul 23, 2015 11:24 am

test drive at shows and conventions or guild members' I have hear only good about Nolting. Not so good about [mine] new Bernina is supposed to be user friendly But especially test drive and get a solid purchase contract including warranty and service. Whagt IS covered and what is NOT! Be up front about. Tell them you are not buying a house or car, and you are not (yet) a business. I got stuck when the hook broke and they claimed that it ws not covered! Because the User (me) had missed used the machine, *(adjustments) nullifying the warranty. It seemed pretty shady at 2 months and took 6 months to learn what the problem was another 6 monts to do the repair and get it back. They even denied a 2 year warranty claimed 1 year therefore it was out of pocket. I fought and am now satisfied that my machine is fixed properly.

somari
Posts: 28
Joined: Thu Jul 23, 2015 10:08 am

Re: Long arm machines....

Post by somari » Thu Jul 23, 2015 11:26 am

above all NO IMPULSE BUYING!!!!

annasterling
Posts: 3
Joined: Sun Nov 29, 2015 3:20 pm

Re: Long arm machines....

Post by annasterling » Sun Nov 29, 2015 3:25 pm

is anyone seeing me here having trouble getting here I think

annasterling
Posts: 3
Joined: Sun Nov 29, 2015 3:20 pm

Re: Long arm machines....

Post by annasterling » Sun Nov 29, 2015 3:26 pm

ok I see my message so anyone use a qbot on there longarm machine

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