Sewing machine woes: Bernina demos

Boring for most people I’m sure. I need to journal my thoughts somewhere though and a few might like to follow along.

I’ve been reading sewing machine spec lists all weekend. Somewhat informative but doesn’t tell one everthing. Today it was time to go look at a few actual machines. I started with what I know- Bernina.

I had hoped to have a sew, but they only offered to demonstrate. I’d insist on a sew if I get closer to meaning to buy. These are not proper full reviews. Just me capturing observations and thoughts in my search for a solution to my sewing machine woes.

Bernina 350 (AU$2000-2200) 350 link
This is the cheapest model that has the knee lifter for the presser foot. Incidentally, the suite of features is a pretty close match for my sick 1230. So it’s fairly familiar, but I’d have to relearn how to select the functions. Mine has just buttons, this has a screen also. It didn’t sound as smooth as mine but did have a similar and tolerable working sound with familiar low pitch. I’d say this is a possibility. Doesn’t give me very much extra but I wouldn’t lose much either.

Bernina 720 (~AU$4800) 720 link
To spend this much I’d have to be so very convinced. For this it turns out I am not. I wanted to see it because it has a new bobbin hook mechanism, supposedly quiet. I didn’t find it quiet. The working noise has a high pitch that would drive me crazy. That alone says I’m really unlikely to get this one. It is a considerably larger machine than I’m used to, with a larger space to the right of the needle. That part would be great. It also has many, many features. Some of these I would be pleased to have, but learning how to select what I wanted would take considerable time to learn.

There is a 5 series range in between these, but the price feels prohibitive for machines that seem to be increasing in complexity rather than quality? They are a little larger than the 3 series though.

The lady struggled with the auto threader on both machines, only made it work about 1 go in 4. That by itself doesn’t bother me. I have no issue with threading. I did ask about the circuit boards, to be told that the modern ones are small and easy to swap out. So that sounds like an improvement, as long as new boards are available.

Next I mean to go see some Jukis, and maybe an industrial Bernina. After that we will see.



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