Cheap machine for sail/sunbrella work
First time sticking my nose in here, so be gentle.
I’m considering making my own asymmetrical spinnaker (big downwind sail, for the land lubbers), and need an inexpensive used machine that can do sail work, as well as sunbrella for the odd sun cover repair, and new winch/helm covers and such.
Poking around ebay, there is a dizzying array of used machines, many claiming to be professionally serviced and/or remanufactured, often going for less than $200. I don’t want to spend a pile of money for a machine I’ll only use once in a while for repairs once the sail is done. A new Sailrite zig-zag portable is around $850, which is way more than I want to spend for the little bit I’d use it overall.
About the only requirement is that it works, and can do zig-zag stitches (preferred over more passes of straight stitches for sail work). Portability would be nice, as I’ve had to get repairs made in away marinas in the past, and it would be nice to keep it on the boat.
Can anyone recommend ones to look for, or to stay away from? I know, it’s like the ‘which table saw should I buy’ threads in the woodworking forums I frequent, which come up about once a week, but I don’t see any such sail-specific threads for the non-pro (read: barely-capable) here, and short of just buying one and hoping for the best, I don’t know how to proceed.
Oh, and sewing skills are limited to making a few small things when I was a kid, on my mother’s 1940’s Singer, 40+ years ago, but I can still sew a straight line, more or less.
Thanks in advance for any suggestions.
Be seeing you…
Edited 9/29/2009 12:48 pm ET by TKanzler