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Old 03-28-2013, 09:49 PM   #1
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Buying a workhorse/industrial sewing machine.

I'm looking to start a cloth pad business and hubby is all systems go. He wants to buy me a good sewing machine that will last a long time. I need something able to sew turn and top stitched and up to 8 layers of flannel or a few layers of zorb. Amy suggestions on a good machine? I would also love something with various stitch options. My pads will be t&t so I'm not needing a serger.

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Old 03-29-2013, 07:43 AM   #2
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I really love my Janome 6600 memory craft professional. Janome machines in general are supposed to be high quality machines using mostly metal parts, along with an amazing warranty. The 6600 mcp comes with a built in walking foot which is super handy for sewing through all those layers! I am super impressed with my machine!

Take this review for what it's worth though, I am not a Wahm so I probably only sew 3-4 hours a week. Dh wanted me to get the bigger machine so I can eventually redo his car upholstery.

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Old 03-29-2013, 03:30 PM   #3
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Re: Buying a workhorse/industrial sewing machine.

Industrial machines are designed to do one thing, SS, ZZ, flatlock, you get the point. They can be good bargains, used but they take a lot of room and you need to choose what stitch you want. There is also the issue of speed, I can't recall for sure but I think you have not been sewing long? Industrial machines are about 5 times faster then most home machines, that could be dangerous until you get used to them.

I have the Janome 6600 and I wish I could recommend it but the thing balks at going over seams, even fairly light ones(2 to 4 layers of quilting cotton). For a machine that has a MSRP of $2,500 it really should be engineered better. I do like it for other things but it's a bit of a prima-donna with thread and needles, that annoys me.

I also have a new Juki 600(300 and 400 are lesser versions) and I can't say enough good things about that, it will go through anything without balking, Juki started and still is mostly Industrial so I think that is why. I would recommend one of that line, you should be able to get the 600 for about $800 and less for the 3/400.

Keep in mind that the second you use a non industrial machine for a business you void the warranties. Make sure when you are shopping that you don't mention a home business.

I would still keep an eye out for an old Kenmore(or other vintage), if nothing else you will need a back up for when your main machine is in the shop for servicing.
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Old 03-31-2013, 09:24 AM   #4
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Re: Buying a workhorse/industrial sewing machine.

Thanks for the tips!! Do you think there's other machines that aren't considered industrial that would be a good fit too? I would like someone with stitch options or maybe a foot pedal with speed control if I'm doing something new and detailed.
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Old 03-31-2013, 09:37 AM   #5
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Re: Buying a workhorse/industrial sewing machine.

When I had my cloth pad biz, I used a Husqvarna Viking Emerald 116 - it sewed through crazy layers of OBF and flannel like they weren't even there. As long as you have it serviced frequently, it should be fine. They also have a model 118 that has the speed control. I've had mine for 4 years now, love it! I bought mine at the sewing gallery in a Joann Fabrics, they still sell them.
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Old 03-31-2013, 09:49 AM   #6
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Ooo I might look into those for sure! They sound great, although nervous about finding a service place where we'll be moving.
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Old 03-31-2013, 11:38 AM   #7
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I take mine right to Joann's. Honestly no matter what machine you buy, it will need to be serviced if you are working on it as a wahm, so search around for a sewing shop or craft store, they usually either offer servicing once a month or they will be able to direct you where to go!
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Old 03-31-2013, 11:48 AM   #8
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I did find a shop about 30 mins away from our area called The Bent Pin. From online it looks promising. They should be able to at least point me in a good direction like you said.
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Old 03-31-2013, 11:58 AM   #9
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Re: Buying a workhorse/industrial sewing machine.

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Thanks for the tips!! Do you think there's other machines that aren't considered industrial that would be a good fit too? I would like someone with stitch options or maybe a foot pedal with speed control if I'm doing something new and detailed.
The Juki has over 200 stitches, speed control, thread cutter, needle up/down, knee lift, it really comes with high end features.
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Old 04-01-2013, 08:05 AM   #10
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Re: Buying a workhorse/industrial sewing machine.

If you are going to purchase a machine I would recommend an industrial. If you plan on tnting your pads a straight sewer would be best if you plan on making a combo of both then buy the industrial serger and have a cheapo home machine to topstitch anything.

I have both an industrial straight sewer and serger (both jukis) and honestly I prefer them over my home machines (biggest problem with being a crafter is that you end up "collecting" machines ). The reason I recommend industrials is because no matter HOW OLD an industrial is it will ALWAYS have a lower maintenance rate as well as a high resell value unlike home machines. Yes, they cost more but you can find a used one for a more reasonable price than some of the fancy computerized home machines. And they're easy to care for because you can see the parts (also unlike home machines where you have to take them somewhere to get serviced)
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