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What’s the best machine under $200?

Trichia | Posted in General Discussion on

What is the best machine under $200? Please, I need help. I don’t want to waste my money. I will be doing just basic sewing nothing fancy.


  1. User avater
    wghmch | | #1

    Find a good rebuilt machine from a reputable shop, and you should be able to get a model that will last twice as long for half as much.

    Bill Holman

    1. Trichia | | #3

      Thank you so much. I was really worried about getting a rebuilt one I guess just for quality reasons, but I think I will look into getting a rebuilt one and see how that goes. Thanks again for the info.

      1. starzoe | | #4

        Think "reconditioned", not rebuilt. Sewers are much like car buffs, a new model is a tremendous temptation so lots of very good (and not necessarily old) sewing machines are traded in for the tempting new models.

  2. Ckbklady | | #2

    I agree with Bill. I know him from other sewing machine sites and can attest to his knowledge and experience.

    At your price point, you'll be limited in your choices of new and modern machines. If you get a refurbished older machine, you should be able to get a lot more for your money. My local Singer sewing machine repair guy has, for example, three older (1970-1995) machines for under $100 each. They're solid and reliable, have lots of stitch features and are "certified" in the same way as a great used car that's been cleaned, serviced and inspected by a trustworthy mechanic.

    I have to admit that I go there just to say hi, to shoot the breeze and to agonize over spending any grocery money on his "front room" machines. I've done so once too many! :)

    Of course, your local sewing machine seller will also have machines gotten as trade-ins that have been inspected and serviced as thoroughly as my Singer guy's offerings. They can be a great deal.

    Good luck, and let us know what you end up getting!

    :) Ckbklady

  3. Ckbklady | | #5

    Hiya again,

    You may also want to check out this link at Instructables - lots of good, step-by-step advice about buying an older machine:


    :) Ckbklady

  4. Teaf5 | | #6

    I agree with the others--used is definitely better than cheap new!

  5. gailete | | #7

    I'm with the others. Find a good serviced older traded in model. Don't be afraid to try on line (just be sure they offer a refund if their packaging stinks and the machine arrives in pieces). I got a used Janome 9000 for $400 this year which included 4 memory cards and a scanner unit (those were at least $100 add on value). Don't think so basic that you overlook some speciality items that a machine may have. For my money I got a machine with about 150 decorative and utility stitches and the ability to do machine embroidery. You don't want to spend more than $200 so check out the what is available on line and at the different sewing machine shops in your area. Call them and ask what they have used in your ball park. Most of the machine companies have Website that you might still be able to find info on the machines you are interested in.

    First off make a list of what IS important to you. Do you need a free arm? Do you need a knee control to raise or lower the presser foot? An up down needle button? What utility stitches are important, buttonholes, decorative stitches? If you don't have a list ahead of time, you could end up buying a machine that doesn't have the specifics that are really important to you and whoever sells it to you can't read your mind.

    Good luck. Buying a sewing machine I have found to be a very personal decision. No one can tell you what to get. You have to study it enough to figure that out yourself what you want.

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