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the PC Quilter


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I have downloaded a demo version of it and I like it a lot. I was thinking about purchasing it, but I think I am gonna go with EQ5, seems like it is the leader and they have no chance of fading out. I am afraid if I go with another program it will fade out. The only thing I have learned about EQ is that it is complicated to learn.

I can try to find the link of where you can download the demo version of PC Quilt if you want. I tripped over it the other day. You can play with it but you can't save anything.

Hope this helps

Blessings and hugs,


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Thanks Tracey.

the pcq is a free motion carriage that would replace the existing carriage on my grace frame. the information that I read on their site sounds great. I have been quilting for along time...started when I was a little girl with my grandma. In the last year or so I have started it again and I can't get enough. Doesn't seem like I have enough hours in the day. I work full time and would love to quilt as a business instead of working in the office all day. I recently purchased a Janome 1600 quilting machine and a grace quilting frame. I am in the process of making this a business. Making quilts for others and quilting their quilts. I want to make the most of my purchases now and then eventually can purchase more as I go along.

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Hi Tracey,

I know what you mean about so many similar names. A lot of this is new to me...just started getting back into the quilting scene in 2004. I am welcome to any advice. What is the EQ? I have passed by the websites, but haven't ventured into it.

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A very cold Colorado good morning Barbie,

Before I got my Millie:P in November, I spent the previous year using the Janome 6500 ,first a Pennywinkle and then a Hinterberg frame. [the Janome is now my dedicated sewing machine for piecing, GREAT MACHINE.

I tried the PC Quilter at the Innovations Quilt show in Tacoma this last September. Having ordered my Millie months before, I only made general observations. What I noticed is combined with the many sites I have read, conversations with the PCQ programmers and users of computerized quilting in general.

At the time I was interested in the PCQ, they were still working on a connection for the New Janome.

The PCQ's real claim to fame is that for less than $800~ $1500 it will sew isolated repeated motifs or pantos by controlling the machine's stitch speed and the roller carriages the sewing machine sits on [PCQ provides the motorized carriages with the software and wiring to connect to your sewing machine]. Positioning the starting point and really straight seams or experienced mounting of the quilt is the key to it saving time rather than taking more time.

Third party patterns are already digitized for PC quilter and unless you have experience with digitizing I would purchase them. A quilter who is already comfortable with both free motion quilting and computer graphic applications would best utilize PC quilter. It might also be best for those who can dedicate a machine and a frame, or at the vary least have a frame long enough to give you plenty of room to keep the motorized carriages in park while you use the free moving carriages that come with your frame for free motion work.

One more thought is that this and all computerized quilting, such as Sattler Stitcher, require substantial time to be proficient & productive in a business setting. :o One, very busy Long Arm quilter near me just purchased a full Gammill set up with Sattler Stitcher Nearly a $30 thousand investment:mad:, to augment the work she can do with her primary Gammil Classic. Mostly she wants to put less stress on her already warn out hand and arm joints by using the automated quilter for orders needing simple, all-over-pantos, but she doesn't expect it to do it all! And she noted it wouldn?t free her from monitoring the quilting as it sews, nor will it be as fast as she is, because of the time it takes to prep the quilt & set a pattern up. When she is doing the pantos she can make adjustments as the quilt seams dictate but once started, automated systems sew in a pre-programmed trajectory.

This industry is just exploding with innovations for the home quilter not using long arm machines!:D I highly recommend PCQ as it is the most affordable computerized quilting system out there for short and mid arm quilting. The Ladies at Bayside Quilting in Washington State, are the most experienced and honest users of this and other home quilting systems. Give them a Call! As best as I can tell from the demos and testimonies it works well at what it was designed for.

I wish you well Barbie, free motion work is SO fun! I am only 6 weeks with my new APQS Millennium and I am so happy with it! I might add that it is much easier to set up & use than either of my home frame set ups with the Janome, and the stitch quality is beautiful. Currently I am working on my 5th project/ 2nd full size quilt and gaining confidence each day! After a few years I might be ready to give up the fun of doing this myself and automating with a computer. Before getting the free motion bug, I spent many years using computers for weaving on an AVL loom and before that, computerized knitting machines, but I also love to hand knit or sit at my wheel and just spin wool or crank out a sock on a simple 100-year-old sock machine. For me it is all about FIBER!!!

What better time to live than when we can be blessed with tools, some old some new, that ALL make the process fun!


QUILTS: from Start to Finish

Serving the Colorado Front Range

PS: I have a front cover plate for the Janome 6500, with a quilter's Handi Handle already attached, it worked very well for directing free motion, start/stop and speed from the front. If you could use this, e-mail me off list. saundraterry@comcast.net

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  • 4 weeks later...

I have observed the PC Quilter at a few shows during the past 12 months and watched it for a long period of time on two occasions. I think its a great idea for someone that wants to have computer designed and computer automated quilting. Its certainly much cheaper than a longarm. I actually considered it, but I did not feel that any of the small portable tables ie: SuperQuilter, EZ Quilter, etc. were strong and rigid enough for longterm permanent use. It really depends on what you intend to do with it.

I do have a few friends that are quite happy with such frames and in such case, Pc Quilter would make lovely easy effortless work. I really enjoy doing the quilting myself though. I would not feel comfortable with having a computer complete my designs for me. Somehow that seems like cheating. I think I am probably just silly though.

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  • 2 years later...

Osconda -- I sent you a U2U.

We purchased a PC Quilter about 18 months ago. OUR EXPERIENCE, Underline OUR, was so bad that we, basically, forced the mfg. to take it back and refund our money - both on the PC Quilter and Max-Throat II. The program / carriage would not stitch out a correct or complete design (circles that were out of round by 1 to 2 inches, patterns that did not complete or mis-matched, etc) We worked with the mfg to make sure we were correctly set up and adjusted and upgraded software and chips as requested without a resolution to the problems.

As I said, this was our experience, "your mileage may vary"

John and Shere Machado

The Sewing Room

Salinas, CA

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I\'ve used the pcq for the last few years, I have 2 pro models, I also use the eq5 for making the patterns that I digitize. I use the bmp after I have made a pattern with the eq5 and transfer it into the pcq digitizing program. I think that it is a great system with the UII and use it as a top mount and side mount, depending on what I need to quilt. I like the side mount for doing small areas and I made a quick release to detach the machines, so it\'s fast to do the rest of the quilt freehand. It\'s not wired in to the APQS, just pushes it around with the sidemount that I devised, and the stitch regulator on the UII makes the patterns perfect stitch length. I don\'t like all the upgrades that PCQ kept doing, so I use the old program that I got with the PCQ, I didn\'t upgrade everytime they came up with a new upgrade, the program I got with the PCQ works just fine.:)

Many people call and e-mail me about the combination of the PCQ and my UII, I am not a representive for the PCQ and personally don\'t like dealing with the owner of PCQ, however I do like the product and think that it\'s a less expensive way to get computerized quilting. The only drawback about the PCQ is that there isn\'t a memory protion of the program where you can freehand a pattern and have the PCQ record the pattern to repeat what you just freehanded like the other more expensive setups, but then I don\'t need to duplicate freehand patterns, just digitize them and quilt them out.:)It\'s a great combo for the panto Kings and Queens out there, makes fast quilting and headache free finishing of the quilts. Here are some patterns I digitized a few years ago, I have loads of them, I use to trade them for other digitizers patterns.:cool:


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I had a PCQ and Max Throat 2 (b-line frame), Janome machine, for a year and had nothing but problems. I sold mine at a great loss. I thought the customer service was very snooty. They only have one or two technicians and they get very overworked. You must be good with computers and willing to make update after update (for software and micro-chip problems). In fact, they make you take a written computer test prior to "letting you buy their machine". When I bought mine it didn\'t include the "cruise control (stitch regulator)," carriage "puck" which I had to buy from another manfacturer (you must have a puck if you don\'t want to use a foot peddle) and weights. Don\'t forget you\'ll need a computer and they recommend a Windows 2000 system (it didn\'t like XP and I don\'t know if it will works with VISTA. If your really interested in the system, joint their chat and read all the entries. Their group is on yahoo. Remember using it at the shows is not like using it on your own. They only give classes in two or three places (CA and Texas I think) and they\'re expensive. I guess I\'ve said enough but please be careful buying this item. If you want to start a business I recommend an APQS machine and circle lord (or Hartley Fense, EZ Quilter). The Lenni wouldn\'t cost to much more then the PCQ.

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I know others that have been burned by the PCQ. I didn\'t do any upgrades as I said before. You don\'t need any other accessories if you have the apqs attached, the puck isn\'t needed for the apqs. I use an old laptop with windows 95 to run the pcqs. The PCQ program was written with 95 and doesn\'t work well with the other windows programs. Thank goodness I didn\'t have to do any classes for the PCQ, I know that they trapped many people and charged an arm and a leg. The problem with the later upgrades continues and support is very minimal. I didn\'t have to take any written test, however I did have to prove to the owner that I could run a computer before I purchaced my first pcq. I bought the second pcq for a song from a dealer here in California who swore that she would never deal with the pcq people again. Apparentally the support was horriable and the local person was mean and didn\'t get along with anyone she delt with. I\'ve heard story after story about the problems with the support and the expense of all the extras that people needed to purchaced after they bought their PCQ. The original program works just fine without the upgrades if you do have an interest in the PCQ. The local LA shop bought one for her HQ16 and she ran the newer program with the PCQ. You guessed it, she still isn\'t able to run her PCQ and has asked me for assistance. I regret that I don\'t want to get involved with her business because of the newer program. She still doesn\'t have the thing up and running, last time I went by and looked in her window the PCQ was sitting in her shop and takig up space, but as I said before I don\'t have any problems with my 2 PCQs.

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I entered the machine quilting world with a Janome, b-line frame, pcq program amd max throat. Paid around 4500 for the setup. When it worked it did OK. Getting it to work with my computer was iffy. A friend and I bought our set ups at the exact time. I was able to get mine up and running after much learning curve involvement. She was never able to get hers to work right. The support people were not knowledgeable and being able to work out a problem was very, very frustrating over the phone. At times she was blamed for the malfunctioning of the machine. It turned out to be a bad chip/ motherboard issue. After a year of toubleshooting, she finally packed it up and sent it back and they sent her an upgraded unit for her trouble. The new unit has been used a few times with success.

Bottom line....if you have a .....LOT ......of patience, are willing to learn ( the hard way) and a computer you can TOTALLY dedicate to this set up it could be worth your while. Me...after 1 1/2 yr. I bought a Mille and haven\'t used the other since. :P

I will put in a plug for PCQ designer software program. I thought it was user friendly and easy to learn .

I think the new version is called PRO-Q-designer.

good luck

Pat K

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  • 7 years later...


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