Ok guys (I would say and gals, but I don't know if there are any other women on this forum...are there?)
Anyway, what am I looking for in a REALLY basic sewing machine to make some homemade gear? Special attachments, needles, thread, certain stiches, etc.
What machines do you all have?
I have a $100 singer from walley world. Straight, zig-zag & bar tack are the most common stitches for MYOG I think. They are the ones I use the most. Make sure it will reverse. Check this page-http://www.specialtyoutdoors.com/tips/tips.asp
It should answer most of your questions.
WOW! Thanks for that awesome link!
Originally Posted by Arkwater
I have a Europro Denium Sewlution that I got from Big Lots last year. I bought it for my wife as a cChristmas present and I have ended up using it more that she has. It was about $100.
It's a nice machine but it has taken quite a bit of adjustment to get thing setup right. It does a great job now.
Ask around. I use my Grandma's old Sear's Kenmore machine. I think it is older than I am and it is still going strong. It doesn't have all the bells and whistles, but will do all the basic stiches. Someone might have a machine collecting dust. Sewing machines are like excersise equipment, a lot of people buy them and only use them a little.
You could see if there are any sewing machine repair places close to where you live. They should have used machines there.
When you finally get a one, buy a bunch of $1 yd cotton fabric from WM and practice. I would have saved myself some head aches if I would have.
I have a White brand "Jeans Machine" that my wife's grandmother gave her a long time ago. It has several stitch types, some of them fancy-schmancy, but it's really not a fancy machine. I've only used straight, zigzag, and bar tack. I've tried the button-hole thing but never really did anything with it. As long as you have reverse and bar tack, you can make button holes anyway.
Be sure to check Goodwill and Salvation Army, too - might be able to find good deals there. All metal is supposed to be better than plastic too, but I haven't had any problems so far. Other than the movers breaking the case and one of the knobs...must have dropped it or thrown it or used it for shot-put or something.
A Viking floor model that I picked up from Joann Fabrics for 125. Not real fancy but has more stitches than I'll use. Does straight, zig-zag, bartack, Button-hole, double and triple stitch.
Check out the stores there in the Canton/Ypsi/A2 area Michele you should be able to find a used one for cheap. Many people bring old machines into fabric stores to be repaired and cleaned/oiled and never reclaim them. Stores sometimes are only too glad to get rid of them for a song.
Do be choosey about the type of bobbin though. I believe that some will tell you to avoid the top drop in type. Personal preferences and all. Oh and my personal no-no is to avoid the self-threaders. There are needle issues with these I prefer to avoid.
I have a Singer 348. It is old as dirt.
I need a link to a "HOW TO ADJUST" FAQ. I can't get the tension right and wind up with either broken thread ot a loose ball of thread on the bottom of the stitch. GRRRR!
I'm an engineering type and think I should be able to intuit these things!!
On mine you can adjust the bobbin thread tension by either tightening or loosening the screw on the thingy (technical term) that the bobbin goes into. Yours might be similar.
I think Michele is right, there are only men on this forum that sew.
I got a machine at a yard sale for 5$ . It works on some material but on the thin stuff It has caused me to cuse up a storm, as I remove bunched up bobbin or the top stiching will look good and then turn the project over and there is NO stiching on the bottom :mad:
I am sure a proffessional could bring the timing up to speed. (read I have tried but am not a PRO)
The thing is with projects like stuff sacks, snake skins, ect.. They look so easy and there should not be ANY reason that a I could not make my own, And I have done some projects. BUT I want more!!! To pay retail for something I could make just kinda goes against my nature.