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ValerieJ last won the day on January 26

ValerieJ had the most liked content!

About ValerieJ

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    Sunny Phoenix, AZ
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    Quilting, cooking, baking, walking.

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  1. ValerieJ

    My Dilemma

    GailR, I purchased a 1997 APQS Ultimate II from the original owner five years ago. APQS has made no money off me except a few incidental purchases for maintenance and new leaders. Yet this past summer when I was at my wit's end trying to fix a problem I was having, Amy spent hours with me on the phone listening to my machine run, checking pictures to see how things were set up, etc, etc until we had my problem solved. She did not try to sell me anything or convince me I should upgrade, and in fact my problem was solved with nothing but a bit of expertise and a lot of patience. That is the kind of support and dedication to owners and users of their machines that is hard to find anywhere. So whatever machine you choose, just be sure, absolutely certain, that they want everyone who uses their machine to be happy -- that is the machine you should buy and the company you should support. Aside from that, if you can possibly try out the machines you are considering, do it. Yesterday at a quilt and craft show was the first time I had ever touched any LAQ besides my APQS, and it was eye-opening. Good luck to you and I hope you find your perfect quilting partner.
  2. Excellent question. I prefer this forum. I spend lots of time on FB, more than I should partly because you have to swim through so much stuff. As a couple have said, it is difficult to find what you want with a search. And with all but the last few comments hidden behind the "view previous comments" link you get all the repeated, duplicated answers and so much "hit and run rudeness." I almost always click however many times I must to get to the first comments, because so much information can be hidden there, and then it is easier for me to quickly scroll through/past the repeats. So my preference for this forum has several reasons, including that it seems a more relaxing "quieter" place, not so haphazard, more actual knowledge and thoughtful answers, more consideration for others in general. On the other hand, FB is fun for it's multitude of pictures and inspiration. BTW, I am not known to most people here because I rarely post, though I am here to read the discussions often. I have a 1997 APQS Ultimate II that I aquired from it's original owner 5 years ago -- it has no bells and whistles. It has a light, handles with on/off button on front and back, and a rheostat for speeds 1-10, no interchangeable foot, no computer, no needle up/down, but I love her and she has helped me finish several quilts I might never have done without her. I can vouch for APQS's commitment to their owners, even those who did not buy from them, and the staff's dedication to customer service and the happiness of APQS longarm owners and users. When I am able to upgrade, it will definitely be an APQS. And in 3 years, 86 days, 2 hours, 34 minutes, and 9 seconds I will be retired so I can quilt more than occasionally. Woo hoo!! Then I'll be posting here much more!
  3. Oh, my gosh! That is a lot of helpful information and some extra knowlege. LOL! Thank you, Cagey, for the explanation about flashpoint and flame extension -- very interesting things I had not considered. And, yes, the rare times I use nail polish and, then, polish remover, I leave the cotton balls on paper towel in the enamel sink to dry out before they go into the trash. I am not sure when or where I developed this caution about those things going into the trash, but it is something I think about. Thank you for weighing in, also, Jim and Mary. Knowing other knowledgeable people are comfortable with it makes me feel better. For the record, a good bit of liquid did evaporate, leaving the oil behind. I believe WD-40 to be a combination of, basically, kerosene and oil, hence its cleaning and lubricating functions, and I am sure there is also a propellant of some sort to help expel it from the can. That propellant probably disperses or evaporates right away, leaving behind the WD-40 formula of kerosene and oil. That is not scientific or specific, but my layman's understanding. Anyway, thanks for putting my mind at ease, everyone. I hope you're all having a relaxing holiday weekend.
  4. Thanks for taking time to answer, Sharon. I'm uneasy to do that since it is flammable, not that I'm using flames near my trash. LOL Actually, I bet your suggestion would be great for most people here on the forum. But I didn't mention I'm in Phoenix. It will be about 110 today, and I think the temperature of a closed trash can would be even higher than that, so that's why I hesitate to put it in the trash. For now it is still outside in the heat, hopefully evaporating quickly. I'm still hoping to learn if there is a better way or maybe a "correct" way to dispose of it.
  5. Hello fellow LAQ machine do-it-yourselfers. I am attempting to work on the Beast's timing this morning. That is my 1997 Ultimate II. The video is great, and I am to the point of putting the hook assembly back into place. Amy showed a trick of bracing your screwdrivers against the thingamajiggy behind it to help pry and scootch the assembly off the post in the first place. But now the video simply shows the assembly back in place without showing how to do it. This thing will not just push back into place. I bet I'm not supposed to put a lot of pressure on that center post that the bobbins snap onto, and I bet I'm not supposed to whack it with a mallet or probably even tap it. Anybody here have any hints on how to get that hook assembly back into place, all the way back on the post? Any help will be appreciated. ****** UPDATE ****** I just spoke with Angie and learned that I was a bit too careful on the step of running the machine, at slowest speed, with the file against the post to smooth it out and possibly shave off the minutest, tiniest bit of metal. It took 3-4 more seconds with the file at the most. And the hook assembly popped back into place. Thanks once again to the very knowledgeable, helpful, and patient APQS crew!
  6. I am following the video about checking/fixing timing. I removed my bobbin hook assembly. There were a few spots that needed buffing. After doing that, Amy says to give the assembly a good bath in WD40 and then oil. Okay. Working outside, I held the assembly over the plastic lid of an empty mayo jar and spritzed WD40 in and around the assembly. Now I have about a teaspoon of excess WD40 in that lid. How do I dispose of it? Just leave it out there to evaporate? Or is there a better way? Thanks. Now please send all positive energy that I will be able to reassemble all this and get my Beast stitching properly again. Thanks!
  7. ValerieJ

    Variegated Threads

    I just used King Tut variegated for the first time (I've only quilted a half dozen quilts so far, so I guess that is not saying much.) and had no problems at all. I'm on a 1997 Ultimate II, no bells, whistles or hopping foot if that information makes a difference. As far as I know, any problems I have had so far have not been thread related, other than some poorly would bobbins.
  8. ValerieJ

    I can't believe I did this

    Yes! We definitely will need to get together. I shall email you soon. And just so this is still all quilting related, The Beast and I wrangled a bit over the finishing of this quilt, but I love longarming though I don't spend near enough time doing that, so I was reasonably patient and the last 18 inches square The Beast gave in and let me finish without a break. I am getting pretty good at tying off and burying threads. And now the binding is nearly finished. Even though the quilt was so surprisingly square and even, I didn't feel comfortable attaching the binding with The Beast (a 1997 Ultimate Ii with no stitch length, needle up/down or any other bell or whistle), so I have stitched all that on my sweet Featherweight. I must say, I will never doubt Sharon Shamber again. I thought it was a bit too much to glue-baste the front of the binding down as she suggests instead of pinning, but I tried it this time and I am a believer! Quilt On!
  9. ValerieJ

    I can't believe I did this

    Hi, Sue. Thanks. Now if I could just get The Beast to cooperate and play nice. I unstitched almost as much as I stitched yesterday After having so much fun on the first 3/4s of the quilt. I'm at 19th Ave and Thunderbird. I thought you were in Scottsdale. We met a couple years ago, I think, when you were demo'ing Accuquilt Go! At 35th Ave Sew and Vac. Or did I mix up Sues?
  10. You guys! Most of you probably see this all the time, but it is the first time for me and The Beast. This is the bottom edge and corner of the quilt I am finishing today, I hope. I stole a few minutes before work to baste down the last edge so it is ready when I get another few minutes for the last pass. I float my tops. If I have been very, very good while piecing, the top edge of the quilt might look this good, but to be able to lock The Beast horizontally and stay between 1/4" and 1/8" all the way across only 10" from the last quilted pass without tugging or pulling has never happened before. All. The. Way. Across. The. Final. Edge! You are the only ones who will understand why I am grinning and patting myself on the back.
  11. Vickie, I trained myself to use my left hand for "mousing" so I could write and do other things with my right hand. I never thought to see if I could rotary cut with my left hand. But now I will ... very carefully though!
  12. ValerieJ

    Project Angel Quilt

    That quilt, that amazingly beautiful quilt says so much about so many in this group but even more about the love and power in the entire group. Congratulations to everyone who participated with stitches as well as to those, like me, who sent their love and well wishes to go with the fabric and thread. This is the best kind of healing hug.
  13. ValerieJ

    Wow!So honored!

    You certainly earned that win. That is gorgeous quilting on a beautiful quilt. Congratulations!
  14. ValerieJ

    I am too bored

    Mary Beth, I have arthritis in my shoulder, too. Diagnosed about seven years ago. Started on one naproxen a day, but within six months I needed two and was still experiencing pain. I panicked, wondering, if it is this bad in my mid-50's, hth was I going to live? I started putting 3-4 slices of fresh Ginger into my hot drinks -- coffee, tea -- every day, and within 2-3 weeks the pain was under control without any pills at all. Most days I forget I even have arthritis in that shoulder. Once you get it under control you can even miss a few days and still be all right. This tends to happen to me when I travel. I carry a hunk of ginger with me, but sometimes I just forget. I hope you find what works for you.
  15. Oh, my gosh, that is so beautiful. You have combined two of my favorite things with the wholecloth and the lace cloth. So creative and so well executed. Bravo!