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Information on Bernina Embroidery Machin

lovemybostons | Posted in General Discussion on


 I would like some feed-back on the Bernina Embroidery machines, I have decided to trade my SE in for a Bernina, but I’m not sure which one? Would some-one help me? How is Bernina’s customer service? Are the Bernina’s user friendly? Any help would be greatly appreciated! Thank-You!



  1. momgon | | #1

    I would also like information on the Bernina machines.  I am looking to buy a new machine and looked at them yesterday.  Please tell me what you think.

    1. lovemybostons | | #4


      I'm going Friday, if it ever quits snowing to look at them. The only thing I know about Bernina is that quilters really like them. I don't know any-one with a Bernina embroidery, the closest dealer is 65 miles away.  If I go Fri, I will let you know what they have to say. Bernina has a great web site, I have been on it several times. They will send you a free CD on their embroidery machines.

        What kind of machine do you have now?

  2. Crazy K | | #2

    Sorry, I can't help you on the Bernina but I have to ask...........why don't you like your SE?   I'm just curious.


    1. lovemybostons | | #3

      I have had 4 Viking embroidery machines, my last one is the SE, the machines are wonderful but the Viking Customer service is terrible, I found out in a hurry that they do not stand behind their products! It doesn't matter how loyal a customer you are, I also have a new plain computer sewing machine and serger also. I had a problem with the dongle for the customizer, they would not stand behind it. When I bought the customizer the dealer told me if something happened to the dongle just bring a piece of it back and they would replace it free of cost, she gave an example, her words if your dog eats it wait for the dog to poo and retrieve it and they will replace it! Well I had a problem, took it back to my dealer and all of a sudden she said it would cost me 50.00 to replace it, Viking changed their policy, she said. So I Emailed Customer Service several times and they wanted 50.00 to replace it. That made me furious! So mad I haven't even used the machine for over 1 year. I felt like I was lied to! I will never buy another Viking or reccomend Viking to anyone! I know it it is silly,it was just a 50.00 dongle! But it is the principle of it! So I'm planning on trading the SE in I hope this week, it really depends what Bernia will give me on a trade-in.

  3. Pattiann42 | | #5

    It has been a long time since I owned anything Bernina.  When looking for a new home embroidery machine and after talking with the dealers of Husqvarna and Bernina, I called my favorite dealer of over 20 years (I bought my first and only Bernina SM from him) and got this reply - "Bernina is too expensive".  He now sells and services Babylock and Pfaff.  I bought the TOL Babylock combo and it has been a dream.  No dongles or locks, no expensive feet to buy, no additional software needed. 

    The only Bernina feature that I would like to have on the BL is the BSR for free motion quilting.............but I can live without it.

    Edited 2/6/2008 6:33 pm ET by spicegirl1

  4. Stitchwitch | | #6

    I can highly recommend the Artista 630. It's a great machine and your stitch quality is excellent. I WOULD NOT try the 730 or 640. I had the previous Artista 200 and I just hate the 9mm stitch width. It "swollows" everything. I also find my 630 to be more refined and yes like you say get a good dealer. The Bernina's are also very strong & sturdy machines compared to the Husqvarna Vikings.  I've have a Husqvarna Sapphire and as much as I like some of the features I still have to use my Bernina for certain things due to the shortcomings of the Sapphire.

    1. lovemybostons | | #8


       Can you tell me why not to try the Bernina 730 and the other one listed? The one thing I have noticed about the SE is the hoop, sometimes not always will jump while embroidering. Some-one told me Bernina does not do that. So in your personel opionion I have the better machine? I talked to a dealer  tonight and she told me that Bernina does not take trade-in's, is that true? I just thought that was kind of unusual.  I want to Thank-You for your any in put you could give me.

      1. Stitchwitch | | #10

        I would not go for the 730 & 640 for the following reasons. The 630 has a oscilating hook system which provides a far better stitch quality than the 730 & 640 which have a different hook system. The 630 also has a USB port like the 730 & 640 which is a must for an embroidery machine these days. Having said this if you do mostly creative sewing and not really fashion sewing then you could test the 730 as it does have more features than your 630 but if you do mainly fashion sewing and some embroidery, like myslef, then the 630 is perfect. I've never had issues with hoops.  Yes, Bernina does not do trade-ins which is a bit of an issue to me as well but where I'm from, South Africa, Husqvarna Viking only does a trade-in once they manage to sell your machine. Dealers seems to only want to sell new machines. I'm sure there is a big marker for used machines as well considering what you pay these days. You should also look at the software. Compare prices and ease of use AND THE DEALER! With software the dealer DOES matter. You will need lessons to see what all it can do. I cannot stress how important a good dealer is. When you purchase an embroidery machine you purchase more than the machine. You will also need software and also look at what the design libraries of Husqvarna / Bernina have to offer. Lastly you will never have the perfect machine. I'm still looking for it! You have to buy the machine which suits your needs best.


        1. lovemybostons | | #11

          Thank-You for your reply, I have more things to think over. I realize now, I need a new dealer for sure if I keep my machine. I have trusted her her for many years, I'm realizing that maybe she is also part of the problem along with the Viking Customer {NO} Service. I think my dealer just seen a sale come in the door. I read some where she is a 4 million dollar seller, I don't know for sure.  I also need to check out other machines.

          1. Crazy K | | #12

            I've been following your posts and I think maybe.........just maybe, it's your dealer that's the problem more than the company.  If the dealer stands behind you, the company will do more to correct problems.  I have learned that from personal experience.  You don't say what part of the country you're in.  If you're near a metro area, you should be able to find a different  Husqvarna/Viking dealer.

            I just read your last post and you said you needed to find a different dealer and I think now you're on to something................go for it!


          2. lovemybostons | | #16

            Thanks for all the input! I really feel much of my problem is my dealer, I look back over the years I have bought from her. I even brought my friends in  to buy machines! I remember not even getting a Thank-You from her. I really just didn't think anything of it at the time, until one of her employees told me to pick out a design for selling a machine, not the dealer!

            I thought about other embroidery machines out there and seen a clip from Martha Stewart about the Pfaff Creative Vision. So I called the dealer today. We talked along time today about Viking and Pfaff, he seems knowlegable, friendly.He has been in business for 40 years. He also sells Baby Lock, Singer, no longer sells Viking. He is willing to take in a trade-in, Pfaff also has 36 month no interest financing, which I like. The one thing I don't care for is that he is in Rockford,Il which is 70 miles away and a much bigger town that I'm not used to. I'm not a brave 20 year old anymore, I don't care for large towns. The gentlemen said he works on all machines, has good inventory, his wife gives the classes. He also told me if I get lost just to call him on my cell and he will direct me, which I thought was very nice!

            Any feedback would be great.

          3. Crazy K | | #17

            O.K........sounds like you're on the right track.  I must tell  you that Viking, Pfaff and Singer are now all part of Husqvarna........just recently they all merged.  I had a 1950's era Pfaff and it was a wonderful machine but of course, it was the old style......no utility or stretch stitches.  It did do zig-zag which was still fairly new back then.  I don't know anything about the newer ones and nothing of the embroidery machines.  I have two Designer SEs and love them.  I had one that had a high pitched squeal.  I sent it in to the dealers repair shop three times and they said there was nothing wrong.  I finally took it in and had the girls in the dealership listen to it........they called their boss and said that machine HAD to be sent to corporate headquarters for repair or replacement.  The machine went in, had a motor replaced  and it's humming along beautifully now.  Maybe it was one of the batch that was bad.....???  I got it at a survey that I was invited to attend.  Corporate people were there demonstrating and selling the machines............ got a good deal on it so and the repair was done under warranty at no charge to me so I was happy.........once it got fixed!! :-)

            I wish you luck on your venture.  Too bad you have to go so far.  I found the classes so very helpful for me.  I live a mere two miles from the JoAnn Store that houses the Husq. dealership.  That's how it works here in the midwest.  I have a Janome 9000 that I got before my first Husq. Designer 1 but the embroidery feature just isn't what I was looking for..........too cumbersome, too restrictive and the amazing box that I had to get to get designs from the 'net drove me batty..........that's when the D1 and the 3d software came into being.  Much better......at least for me!

            Good luck and Happy Stitching!


          4. lovemybostons | | #18

              I will let you know how it goes, I really hope it does go well. Maybe tomorrow I will go. The guy told me to bring my machine with me, which sounded promising. The Bernina dealer is also on the same street, so I will have different places to go. The  Bernina Dealer called me and he said something about donating my machine to some organization and he would make me a great deal on a new machine. Sounds alittle funny to me. But I may stop in and see what he says.

          5. MaryinColorado | | #19

            I have family in northern Ill, I can't even find a fabric store closer than Rockford!  If you have any suggestions, I would love to hear from you!  (After you click on post, you can click on email to the person this is from, it will come to me.)

            If you go to the machine websites, some have a "dealer locater" you type in your zip code and it lists the closest ones.

            Good luck in your quest!  I love my Husq/Vikings.  Since my Designer 1 takes floppy disks, I still keep my ears open regarding what's new.  I did just buy the new software so will stick with Viking or Pfaff if I have to trade up some day.  Mary


          6. lovemybostons | | #20

            HI MARY,



          7. MaryinColorado | | #21

            Well, hello!  I went to your "rival" high school, on the other side of the bridge!  I cannot believe you are there!  It truly is a small small world!  I was out there last May, looking at houses to buy, but my husband changed his mind about moving.  I have family all around that area.  My best friend works in Sterling. 

            So, where on earth do you buy fabric and sewing related items?  My niece took me shopping quite a ways out, but no luck finding anything except Wallmart.    

            Viking and Bernina are big competitors, so your software won't be compatible.  The Pfaff 4D Vision is the same software as the Viking except for the packaging.  I sure hope that you get this worked out to your satisfaction.  It is a shame to spend all that money and not get what you paid for.  I would definitely call the Better Business Bureau there and anyone else who might be of help.  Maybe I should write her a letter telling I was warned about her way out here in Colorado!!!   People like that get what they deserve eventually.  She may be making money, but her Kharma will catch up to her! 

            I'd write her off, but maybe spending $50.00 on the dongle and having the machine serviced for the hoop problem would be worth it for you in the long run?  I feel so bad for you. 

            Edited 2/12/2008 12:00 am by MaryinColorado

      2. MaryinColorado | | #15

        I would continue to discuss your multiple problems with Viking.  I really think you got a "lemon", which rarely happens with Vikings. Your dealer should have stood behind thier product, especially if it was within the first year.  I'd consider small claims court, the better business bureau, etc. as this is a huge investment not to be satisfied.  Also, maybe write a letter to Martha Stewart, who is thier spokesperson, ya never know.....There is one dealer in Colorado who was so upset about the "rush to market" on the SE's. He made good on all the issues for the sake of his customers.   He added Brother and Pfaff machines in his store recently.  There were many problems with the SE's for awhile, it may have been one batch, but a good dealer will care about thier reputation and do whatever it takes to satisfy the customer. 

        I own the Designer1 and the Rose which do not have any problems, the Rose is over 10 years old and still embroiders like a dream.   I also have the 936 Huskylock, which is also a dream machine.

        I am so sorry this happened to you.  I understand how you feel about it leaving a bad taste in your mouthl.  I had a similar experience with GM and bought a Volkswagon last year! 

        Something else to consider, I bought the Pfaff 4D Suite Professional Software, it is the exact same thing as the Husq/Viking software except for the box and the name.  VSM ownes both companies.  Wonder where it will go from here? 

        Edited 2/8/2008 7:09 pm by MaryinColorado

  5. marthamom | | #7


    If you decide to go with Bernina software be very, very careful with the dongle.  Bernina will charge you much more to replace a damaged dongle - I believe around    $ 250!!!

    Many people have had problems with the bobbin sensor on the Artista 200s and 730s.  The sensor will go off constantly even when there is no problem.  I have a 200E and finally was able to convince my dealer's tech that the sensor was defective and my problems were not operator error - always the first response of any tech!  The bobbin sensor on my 200 was eventually replaced and so far all is well.  But the three trips to the shop were very annoying during the busy Christmas embroidery season. 

    I also own a Viking Designer SE and have been very happy with it.  The sensor foot system is particularly nice as is the quality of the embroidery.    The latter was especially appreciated during my problems with the Bernina 200E.

    Be sure the dealer you choose is both knowledgeable and supportive.   Good luck in your quest and maybe take another look at your SE - it has a lot of great features!!

  6. SouthernBling | | #9

    Bernina's are wonderful machines and I have one, but over the years I have come to love the Pfaff machines also. The real emphasis should be on the company and the local dealer, in my opinion. That is why I bought my Pfaff 7560 instead of another Bernina. Then I got a 2144 and now I have traded that for the new Pfaff Creative Vision sewing and embroidery machine (and still have the 7560). I like that when you trade or sell an used machine the guarantee goes with it. I really love the IDT on the Pfaff machines. Even velvet can be sewn without basting or pinning. Not all companies do that.Before you buy, go to ALL the local dealers and try their machines. Take some of the fabrics that you usually sew on. Also take some fabric and do an embroidery. You would not buy a car without 'test-driving'

  7. Betakin | | #13

    Several have posted that Bernina does not take trade in's. There is a Bernina dealer in my local Hancock's and I am unsure if they take trade ins  being this is not a privately owned dealership but run by Bernina. I have a local privately run Bernina dealer that does take in trades but only trade ins of other Bernina machines no other brands.

  8. Ringo4 | | #14

    I can totally understand your frustrations.  I had a Pfaff 2144.  I had sewn for many years, but it was my first embroidery machine.  My dealer sold Bernina for many years and had just started to sell Pfaff also.  Pfaff customers suffered due to this.  I finally gave up trying to learn the machine and went to a Janome 11000.  This has been wonderful.  It was hard enough to learn all of the basics about embroidery without the headache of a machine and dealer that were hard to deal with.  The one thing that you mentioned was the hoop.  The hoops on this machine are more sturdy than on my Pfaff.  If you have a Janome dealer in your area, check it out also.  But please just be sure of that dealer before you buy anything and make sure that you have a list of all of the things that you cannot live without on a machine.  It is just too expensive to make a mistake!!



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