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I have had several babylock sergers. The one thing I would say is whatever one you get make sure is has the port to connect directly into the computer. that means don't buy an older one. The newer ones I think all do hook up with the computer but my Ellageo doesn't and I can't tell you how many times I wish it did. It's like quilting with one hand behind your back.

Carreen

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Thanks for the suggestions Carmen. I've been researching and looking at the different machines and probably should just start with something simple. I would like to use it in my business but am still working full time in a 'non-quilting' job so not sure if I can justify a multi-needle model expense right now or not. I thought there would be ladies who had their own machines and could advise me. I have a sewing machine at home that I love - granted it is just a simple Singer dating from the 50's but it sews great. I don't want to finance so I'm saving my money and so the large dollar ones have made me back off quite a bit. I don't think I need a combination sewing/embroidery machine since I have my Singer and my Millie. So any advice, suggestions - education - would be truly appreciated. I would like to offer some services like making labels, some customization of my own stuff, etc. Hope I've given you more to go on.

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I have a HV Designer I purchased in 2004, like above, it is a work horse and does beautiful embroidery. Are you going to embroider as a business...then you might want to look at a multineedle machine, changing thread color is a pain!

Just for a hobby and the occassional embroidery, then a combo will be fine, try them out at different dealers, see what you like best. The price for a Combo can go into the thousands, so if doing this "for sale" items, a stand alone embroidery machine would be better.

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I'm not in business so my machines are for me as I choose to use them.

I have Pfaffs. My embroidery machine is the Pfaff 2170 with a separating embroidery unit. I know you said that you like your Singer, but given the age and the yearly idea of maintenance you might like to have the combo option. When one of my machines is in for treatment, I have the other one available to work with. That could be very valuable. I can set my embroidery to work on it's own while I work on something else in the area. With the newer Pfaffs the embroidery module doesn't even need to be moved for you to work with general sewing and it has a great large support table in place.

Be sure to get one that is able to be connected to computer for transfer of designs. Mine does and it is great, the one I had previously wasn't and it sure is a problem for my daughter to have any new designs because they no longer sell what she needs unless she takes out a "bank loan" for a single purchase.

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I agree with Monika, if you are going to use it in your business than go with a multiple thread machine. I use to have a Bernina 180E that I used to make quilt labels for my customers, I used it so much that it ruined my machine was told that the combos (sewing/embroidery machines) were meant for personal use only and not for a business and the amount of use/abuse that it would get.

Domestic embroidery/sewing machines are very expensive and in my opinion not worth the wear and tear that a home business can put on them after all you will not be able to make enough $ per label to add up to all of the repair bills that will eventually be needed. Speaking from experience ;)

I now have the Bernina 730E and only use it for my own personal use.

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I have a Bernina Artista 640 and I love it! It is a real work horse also. I use it everyday from piecing to fixing my DH's old blue jeans, to fine embroidery work! I bought it in 2005 and paid about $4500 for it, I think.

I would stay away from Singer. I hear the gears are plastic and wear unevenly and quickly. I think most are made in China now. My old Singer was made in the USA, and is another work horse. Dated 1936! If yours is from the 50's it has metal gears! I bought a new Singer Athena 2000 in 1976; paid over $1,000 for it and I love it to this day! I even did slipcovers and light upholstery on it! Talk about a work horse!!

I think Viking, Pfaff (bought out by Viking, btw), Elna (Babylock I think), are all good choices too. JMHO

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Thank you Monika, Madelyn, Joann and LinneaMarie. I appreciate the advice and will keep thinking and looking. Unfortunately there aren't any dealers close to where I live - except for Bernina. I have to save my money anyway - don't want to finance anything right now. The multi-needle sounds like the way to go but costs a lot more. So I'll just wait and keep looking. You've given me great advice though. Thanks!!

I know I learn so much from this forum and my DH thinks I'm crazy sometimes when I tell him about what's happening here and share the prayer requests. He's like - who is this person and where do they live? :D

You gals are the best!

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Your probably going to get as many answers on this question as with which Long Arm. I have 2 Brother multi-needles a 650 and 600II. I also have a Brother Quattro which is for sewing and embroidery. They all do beautiful embroidery and the Quattro sews beautifully. In addition, I have the Bernina 440 QE. Bernina sews great and the embroidery is nice also. I found the Bernina software a little bit of a challenge and their .art formats are not very interchangable with other machines. Brother's software program PE-Design is very easy to use as is Babylock who are very simular to Brother (their machines look exactly alike).

Shop around and find a machine and software program that you feel comfortable with. Most machines do a great job at embroidery but it's the software that's important. If you shop at Sears, Janome used to make the Kenmores (don't know if they still do). Have fun!!! I do both quilting and embroidery for a side business, I have a full time day job which makes it a challenge. :cool:

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