Need help choosing between two sewing machines!
Does anyone have an opinion on the quality of Brother vs. Janome sewing machines?
I am looking to purchase a second machine for free motion quilting. I have narrowed it down to either the Brother PQ1500S or Janome MC6300. The price difference between them is $300-$400. The Janome comes with more stitches but not sure if worth the extra money.
Would value your opinions!
Chris, I'll put this out here is hopes that some readers will respond. I'm a satisfied Viking gal and don't feel qualified to comment on the specific machines.
But in the meantime, I'll address the specific questions about more stitches.
If you are a 'crazy quilter' or into machine embroidery or have kids or grand-babies on the way where it'd be fun to 'play' with the extra stitches then I'd go for them. If you are an art quilter and embellish your work with extra stitching, then go for it.
But if this machine is strictly for free motion quilting then skip them.
The 'go-to' stitches for quilters are a good straight stitch, a zigzag and possibly a blindhem-like stitch if you do or may do machine applique. Everything else is pretty much gilding the lily as far as quilting goes.
When you test drive your choices, sew a regular quilter's seam allowance and then inspect the stitches. If they're nice and straight, EXCELLENT! But if they're wobbly, see you if you can 'fix' it with a simple tension adjustment or different needle. This is a simple check for stitch quality.
Then my best advice is to bring and quilt on things that you expect to work on. Take the time to put the machine...and the sewing machine dealer...through their paces. Sewing machines are a big invest, not something that in a year you want to have to replace.
If there's something you don't understand and can't make work, get the dealer to show you.
Good, knowledgeable dealers will be able to help you. And though it isn't a perfect predictor of how the dealer will be after the sale, if they're unwilling to help on the front side when there's money to be made, I wouldn't expect their service to get better after the sale is made.
I hope I don't sound too harsh on the dealer aspect, but I've had several emails lately about dealers that pretty much ignore the quilter after the sale is made. It's a poor way to conduct business both for the consumer and for those dealers who do do a good job supporting their customers. A good dealer is a big part of the 'which sewing machine to buy' decision.
Chris, I hope this has helped with your decision making a bit. Readers, let us know what you think about the two machines, both good and not-so-good! Thank you!