Category Archives: Sewing Machines

Getting Acquainted with the New Machine

Before we get going, I just wanted to thank everyone for the discussion in my previous article, Three Tailoring Classes at Craftsy. The comments were hugely beneficial for me and touched on some deep issues such as how and when to turn an avocation into a vocation. Thank you for reading and contributing to the blog.

I haven’t had enough time to really get acquainted with my new Juki machine – that’s likely to take months. But a few things I’ve noticed: Continue reading

Sewing Machine Pr0n: The Juki F600

After a busy work week, and a work emergency on the weekend, I finally managed to unbox my new Juki and get acquainted with its features.

I also finally finished my yellow shirt, which seemingly had every imaginable obstacle trying to keep me from completing it – including the lack of a button sewing foot as a standard accessory with the F600.  It has an elaborate, electronic buttonhole foot (see the video below) but no way to attach a button out of the box.  So I used my Brother to do the button attachment – one of the things it’s still capable of doing.

The shirt will feature in a future article.  For now, I’ve shot some videos of my favorite features of  the F600, starting with an unboxing video. Enjoy.

All of the videos were shot with the GoPro HERO4 action camera, and the GoPro 3-Way mount, and were (lightly) edited in GoPro Studio software.  It turns out an extreme sports action camera works well for shooting sewing videos. Continue reading

Sewing Machine Shopping

Having already made my decision to upgrade to a fancier sewing machine, what was a fun pastime has now turned into an imperative.  It’s a real downer having projects midway through the pipeline without having a way to finish them.

I’ve mentioned before that another of my hobbies is amateur astronomy.  Like sewing machines, telescopes are very specialized and technical pieces of equipment. Also like sewing machines, each type of telescope is suited for particular types of astronomical observing.

When I first got into astronomy, I went through several telescopes as I learned more about the hobby.  At a certain point, I knew enough about astronomy and the type of observing I like to do that I could invest in the best telescope choice for me.

Now I think I’m at the same point in my sewing “career”.  My Brother PC-210 has taken me from complete beginner to a moderate skill level and the ability to produce some nice garments.  And I also know the kinds of projects I like to do.

So I made two lists.  One was a review of sorts about my current machine, what I liked and didn’t like about it.  And the other was a list of what I wanted out of the next machine. Continue reading

Sewing Machine Repair – a Drama in One Act

I brought my machine back to the shop today, to get its buttonhole malfunction addressed.

After the tech greeted me and I explained the problem, he immediately shifted to a confrontational tone and claimed that all he did to the machine was oil it.

I said he must have done something, because the stitch length had changed and that I thought he had recalibrated something.  He told me that on this machine, there’s nothing to recalibrate, and reiterated that all he did was oil it.

I explained that buttonholes worked just fine before I took the machine in for service, and showed him the shirt I was wearing as evidence.

He responded, “I asked you if there was anything else wrong with the machine when you brought it in. Did you tell me there was anything wrong with buttonholes?”

“But there wasn’t anything wrong with the buttonholes”, I replied. Continue reading