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Recommend New Machine

3cats4me | Posted in Equipment and Supplies on

I’m looking for a new sewing machine.  I think I would like a computerized one.  I have a 30 yo Elna SU with cams.  I enjoy sewing precision items.  I want to sew garments, home decor stuff, and both heavy and light weight items.  I want the machine to work very well.  Good stitches, even tension, very reliable, accessories available or many that come with the machine.  Any input is much appreciated.  I don’t want to spend 3000.00 or more for the machine.



  1. sewfar | | #1

    I have the same 1970 era Elna Su  and upgraded with a computer Elna.. the now outdated Elna 8000 but I did not think to check if my most favorite commonly used built in stitches would be included in the new expensive model.  They weren't so I occasionally dig out the old girl.  Really check out the details as our old Super is super in many ways to include the truly variable needle positions that the new ones don't have.

  2. EBrophy | | #2

    I would just like to make a suggestion to anyone looking to buy a new sewing machine...  I work for my mother in law in a very small store in the NE.  We are a Pfaff authorized dealer and I would like to tell you what we tell everyone who walks into our store trying to compare sewing machines:

    #1-  There are many machines on the market today, and many of them have the same features and benefits.  I of course know the particulars of the Pfaff line, but I do keep fairly up to date on many of the other sewing machine lines and while they all have their perks, their own quirks and so on, you can find a machine that can work for you in all the brands.  It's NOT the brand of machine that you want to be looking for.  You NEED to talk to the dealers.  A good dealer will know their machines, be able to narrow down with you what you want out of your machine, many times will give you free lessons* to learn the machine so you can get the most out of it.  And most importantly has a good reputation of backing up their machines with support and service that you can trust.

    *Many, not all, dealers in my area (not just Pfaff, but Bernina, Viking,etc., as well) give group lessons.  For someone who is upgrading to their first computerized sewing machine, I personally do not reccomend group lessons.  If you can find a dealer who is willing to give you one-on-one lessons, that would be FANTASTIC!

    #2- NEVER go with another machine just because it's cheaper.  You will never be satisfied and there is not an attentive enough dealer in the world who can change that.  If you go with a lower end machine, you will end up frustrated and dissapointed.  This is also a big 'no-no' for people who are looking to buy a sewing machine for children.  They almost always say, "I didn't want to spend that much on a machine, since I didn't know if they were gonna stay with it or not."  I can guarantee you if you go with a lower end machine that gives them nothing but problems they will not keep sewing.  They will never learn that sewing can be a relaxing and enjoyable experience.  All that they will take from it is a feeling of frustration.

    Of course these are just my opinions...  I would personally love to see you sewing with a Pfaff (wink, wink), but it's more important to many of us in the industry that you're happy with whatever machine you get. 

    ~E. Brophy


    1. Deb123 | | #3

      I have been shopping for a new machine and am really drawn to the Pfaff models.  I just have one concern-a couple dealers of other brands have told me that Singer has bought Pfaff and Viking and I am concerned the quality may suffer.  I did not have a good experience with the Singer I owned and don't want any part of owning another product made by that company.  One of the dealers was a former Pfaff dealer who now carries Janome and Bernina.  I would appreciate your feedback on this.  I would also like to hear from anyone else who has an opinion.  Thanks 

      1. EBrophy | | #4

        Don't ever listen to another dealer about what company owns what anymore!!  ALL the machine brands buy machines off of one another and I'm really starting to believe that there are only like 3 major companies who own all of them anymore!!!  Who has bought who and who bought what design off of who, the list goes on and on.  I can assure you that Singer does not own Pfaff and it is of no surprise to me that you had such a problem with your Singer.  As I've stated before, you need to primarily focus on the dealer that you will be working with over the brand name on the machine.  You need to go with one that will service your machine and heaven forbid you do have any problems with your machine will either service it and be able to hold up your warranty or give you a refund, or exchange your machine.  PLEASE never listen to a dealer who feels the need to bash the other brands in order to buy theirs!!! 

        1. Deb123 | | #6

          Thanks for your input.  I have purchased a new Pfaff and am excited to take it on a test drive!

          1. Elizava | | #8

            I too am searching for a new embroidery machine and am torn between the Viking Designer SE and the Pfaff 2170.  I am interested in the reasons you decided on the Pfaff and what you think about it now that you have had a chance to use it.  Elizabeth

          2. Deb123 | | #10

            I went with the Pfaff because I liked the IDT.  I use a walking foot frequently for quilting and liked the fact that the Pfaff has it built in and you can use a 1/4 inch foot at the same time.  I haven't had enough time to play with my new machine yet to really give you a good review and I haven't even tried the embroidery yet.  I will be taking the class next week.  I have also heard very good things about the Viking model you are considering.  Good luck with your decision.  I'd like to hear back from you on what you decide and how you like your machine.

          3. Elizava | | #12

            I finally decided to get the upgraded Pfaff 2144,  and like you have not had a chance to try the embroidery unit, but am pleased with the machine so far.  The MAXI stitches are fabulous as are the built-in cross stitches.  I was using a Bernina 165E which has a wonderful embroidery module but stitching together 2 pieces of fabric without slippage was a serious problem that even the use of a walking foot did not solve.  I took a pile of different fabrics to the dealer to 'test drive' the machine, and it easily handled all but two pieces of rubber-backed heavy decorator fabric. Thus the Pfaff IDF was the selling point for me.  A bonus was the fact that the dealer offers individual instruction.  Elizabeth

      2. Kiley | | #5

        Actually it is said that Viking bought Pfaff some time back and yes,  recently the Singer Co. parent group, (I believe it is called Kohlberg) did buy Viking/Pfaff. You can check it out on the internet. I guess VSM sent out a letter that they signed the deal. They say not many changes will take place. I suggest as it is already posted to just go with the model machine that you test and love. Janome New Home makes many machines for other companies such as the Sears Kenmores, Huskystar for Viking and the Viking Mega Quilter and also the Pfaff Grand Quilter. Pfaff recently lost their patent on the IDT dual feed feature and the Janome 6600 has the Acu-Feed dual feed foot now but people say it is not quite the same as Pfaff's. So ..if a machine meets your needs and desires..go with it..no matter who makes it..just go with a model you like and a dealer you trust.  I do suggest checking out reviews on line by owners and users and also do some test drives on different models.  

        1. Deb123 | | #7

          Thanks for your response.  I think I found a reputable dealer I can trust.

          1. Kiley | | #9

            Congratulations on your new machine. I hope you love it as much as I love my Pfaff.

    2. nineee | | #13

      Your recommendations for buying a new machine are the best advice I've read.  I've been considering upgrading to a computerized machine and have agonized over which brand to buy.  Your advice is sound and I thank you. 


  3. Mia | | #11

    I just registered yesterday with the same questions you have and was reading the responses. What a great way to get the information we need. I was looking for a serger/overlock machine and wanted a viking, as a friend's recomendation, but their dealer in Albuquerque, NM told me that they had too many complains about their machines and they never took care of it, so they stop selling Vikings. They suggested a Consew, which I've never heard of, but they said it's because they used to make industrial machines only until now. I bought one and searched on the internet about it and it's true, but I couldn't get info on quality. Although I think that if they make industrial machines, the quality should be very good. They also told me that Elna is a great machine, but that nothing is better than a Baby Lock, which are really expensive. The only problem I have is that I found the same machine that I bought for $300 less on the internet, and that's including shipping. Is that possible?


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