Shopping for a longarm, narrowing our search


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Hello.  My husband and I are shopping for a longarm machine.  We think we've narrowed the search down to APQS and one other brand.  We would like to spend some serious time using the machine before purchase.  Therefore, we are looking for a dealer in southern california.  We would like to rent some time on an APQS machine and quilt a quilt before making our final decision.  We just spent four days at the Long Beach Quilt Show testing many machines.  The APQS representative did not have the computer on a machine, so we'd like to see that in person.  We sure would appreciate some guidance.  Thanks!

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The APQS dealer map shows reps in Cathedral City & Julian.  From the home page, you can "Find a Dealer", enter your zip code & find the one nearest you.  If he or she doesn't have the computer hooked up, they could refer you to someone who does.  Of course most of us here on the forum are biased...we love our APQS machines, the company support and the helpful folks here on the forum.   Nancy in Tucson

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Thank you so much for the info and quick replies.  And yes, I have spent quite a bit of time on the website already.  And this Forum is amazing.  APQS owners seem "passionate" about their machines.  I would like to hear why that is.  I will keep investigating the forum and find out all I can.  I will also try to contact those dealers who are closest to me.  Once again, I so appreciate all of your kind replies.  Della Spurgin

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Passion for APQS?  Well for me it has to be the support from the factory and our fellow owners.   I don't think I've ever waited more than a couple of hours for the factory to call me back when I've needed help.  Post on this forum and you will usually get a response from somewhere around the world within minutes offering suggestions for what ever your problem may be.  

The machines are extremely well built (anybody else offering lifetime warranty?) .  A lot of quilters with other brands would not even consider using different colour thread top and bottom (I'm lucky if I match 10% of the time).  You should see the instructions we receive when we do have to change a part, they are well written with colour pictures.

 

I could go on but I'll leave some for the rest.

 

Nigel

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The weight of the machine was a big selling factor for me. The APQS head is about 40 pounds lighter than most other brands. If im going to be pushing it around for 8 - 10 hours a day, i wanted it to be really, really easy. Its weight and the bliss rails made a big difference for me!

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I have had an APQS machine for over 15 years.  I started with an ultimate 1 and upgraded to a millennium.  Customer support, customer support, customer support.  But please let me say that over the 13 years I have had my millennium, I have had to call the factory maybe only 5 times and the problems were always resolved.  If you need new parts, ( and parts do wear out from normal use) the people at APQS are right there to advise on how to replace them.  I have even had them talk me through it on the phone. They also send very clear instructions with pictures via e-mail.  Not counting new wheels, my total expenses for parts has not topped $400.00. in 13 years.  I can use nearly any thread on my machine that I choose.  Though, I am partial to Superior Thread products and seldom find the need to look elsewhere for thread.

 

 I have literally taken my machine head off my frame, strapped it into the car in a seat belt and taken it to quilt camp when they needed an additional machine.  I brought it home, put it back on my frame and off we went quilting another customer quilt together.

 

This machine has served my well over the last 13 years and I plan on many more years of dancing with my machine over my customer quilts!  Good luck on your hunt.  I am sure you will find the right machine for you.  I know I have. :)

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