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Why is it I can purchase a long arm set up for less than a mid arm

Tips, Suggestions, and General Discussions about quilting by machine.
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Why is it I can purchase a long arm set up for less than a mid arm

Post by QuiltingMama53 » Thu May 19, 2016 10:54 pm

I have been looking for a mid arm. I like the sweet 16. It is approx. $6000.00 or
More. I see long arms for much less. A lady is selling a Little Gracie with a Juki machine, never out of the box for $1200. I looked online and new it is selling for $2000.00. I wouldn't mind a long arm. I do have the room, but I don't have a lot of time to quilt at this time in my life. So, I thought a mid arm would be a great interim set up for me. In a few years, we will be down to one child home. So, I will have a LOT of room. Should I just buy the long arm since they seem to be less expensive? I quilt now on a Pfaff. A regular domestic sewing machine. I love quilting. I won't ever use anything computerized. I was told by a long arm dealer, I won't need a stitch regulator, he said my stitching is nice and even. I try to keep my quilting as "handmade" as possible. So no graphs, computers etc. I will be basically free motion quilting on a long arm. So, what would you recommend as a set up for me. The pro I see buying a long arm vs a mid arm is a long arm seems less expensive and I love the idea of not having to baste. Thanks for any guidance.

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Re: Why is it I can purchase a long arm set up for less than a mid arm

Post by billizzy » Wed May 25, 2016 1:37 am

Quilting mama I would say go longarm. You say you wont need it now but truly you will be amazed at what you can do compared to a midarm. The throat size is the biggest issue. What size of quilt are you quilting normally that is what you need to think about:) Check out sewingmachines plus online. I ordered mine from them and they are wonderful to deal with. Pricing is also awesome:) You will have to set it up but trust me its not that hard I did mine in just a day:)
the machine is heavy but the rest is a breeze. go to quilt shows and play on them. The midarms and the longarms and see what you like. I played for several years before diving in on the purchase. and one more thing:

DONT PAY FOR THE NAME:) I bought my machine which is a Tinlizzie model right off their factory line without the name imprinted on it and saved several thousand:) So look around. A lot of machines out there come off the same factory line and just do not have the company name logo stuck to it which costs you more:)

Good luck in your search:)
:D izzy

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Re: Why is it I can purchase a long arm set up for less than a mid arm

Post by purrfect-lady » Thu Jun 02, 2016 2:58 am

I would go for the long arm. You will shortly learn that you will want the biggest throat you can afford. And remember, a 16" throat doesn't mean that you have 16" of stitching space. You will have only about 8" by the time you're nearing the end of a project and the rolled up quilt is taking up much of that throat space. We have a 17" Fun Quilter by Nolting and now wish we'd bitten the bullet when we bought it and gotten the 24".

I would visit user-groups on-line to see what others say about models you are considering. And if you can, test drive all you can before making your decision. I thought I wanted a specific brand, but when I test-drove one at a show, it was so heavy that my back couldn't take it. the next one I checked out shook and rattled so much I didn't even finish a test pass. I ended up with the Nolting, a brand I hadn't ever thought I'd want.

Check out service available?, are there lessons? Will they deliver and set up (and if so, how much??). You do need to be able to get in back of your frame. Will your space allow you to do that?

Happy shopping!


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