Mid-level Sewing Machine Recommendation

AKShooter

Junior Member
Joined
Oct 8, 2017
Messages
24
Location
Anchorage
Hello, went back through the "what sewing machine" searches. Thought I'd follow-up with a question though. Been sewing my own gear for about 6-7 years. My main machine has been the Pfaff Passport. Great with the nylons, light webbing, even cordura. But struggles with webbing work. What I love though, you sit down and it just sews great, nylon, cordura. Doesn't seem to need dialing in to get a great seam.

Looking for a new, solid, all around machine for around $1,000. 5 years ago I was looking at the Sailrite machines, wondering if anyone here had some first hand experience with them. A little more, but what about the portable Juki's. I don't want a commercial machine, don't really have the space for it, want a portable machine.

I make packs, tarps, lots of dry bags. But have some webbing work I'd like to get more into. I have an old kenmore, but for me it's hard to get tuned up to sew correctly, willing to pay a bit more for reliability.
 

WoodBow

Senior Member
Joined
Jul 21, 2015
Messages
1,073
Sailrite sounds like the best fit for you but I don't know enough about them to recommend a specific model.

But I vote you make room for an industrial machine! They don't have to be on giant tables. Just buy a consew 206rb5 and be done. They are just over a grand. I paid $900 used. They can be found cheaper if you are patient.

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AKShooter

Junior Member
Joined
Oct 8, 2017
Messages
24
Location
Anchorage
LOL, I did just find my own thread from about 4 years ago asking generally the same basic question. Was looking hard at the Juki's but there are so many models.....but end of the day, shipping for me is about 1/4-1/3 the price of the machine. Maybe I'll target the couple shops, and local sales.
 

WoodBow

Senior Member
Joined
Jul 21, 2015
Messages
1,073
I keep a constant eye on marketplace. If you're ok with waiting, a good machine will pop up close to home.

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Kegan603

Newbie
Joined
Aug 15, 2020
Messages
5
Sailrite is the only machine I know of that could handle most of what you want but I don’t know enough about them. I avoided industrial machines as long as I could and that is the biggest mistake I made in sewing. I live in a studio and have machine setups I can’t just put away and I utilize that space well when not sewing. When you get to table and mounted motor machines the only thing that limits your projects is you and your imagination as cliche as that sounds and sometimes foot lift height. You can sew 99% of what you see. Technical outerwear to undies to Kifaru clones like Woodbow has done to any gear you want. But if you only sew on one table with your machine now I’d just get a industrial machine and make that new table your new workbench for anything inside. Best of luck in your search and understand you have a fantastic budget to get a lot of extremely capable and versatile machines if you can clear 6-8 sq.ft in your home.
 

nodakian

Senior Member
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Joined
Aug 24, 2017
Messages
366
Location
Dickinson, ND
I picked up a Sailrite Fabricator almost a year ago and have hardly touched my old Kenmores since. Should have done it sooner. I went with that model because it has a high foot lift which I need for sewing through padding; Jukis and similar machines with high lift were out of my price range. It will handle 1/2” XPE plus two layers of cordura and three layers of webbing. Triple feed prevents slippage, and knee lift and auto bobbin wind are really nice.

The only drawbacks are lack of zigzag capability and made in China.
 

Flydaho

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 23, 2015
Messages
112
Location
Alaska
@AKShooter , Check out Riehl Sew and Vac. They had a good variety of machines including the 206rb and a used Sailrite clone for sale last summer. You might get lucky and find a good machine in there for a good price, without the shipping cost.
 

William74080

Newbie
Joined
Nov 25, 2018
Messages
1
I picked up a consew 206rb 1 a few years ago and have had really good experience with it. Stitched everything I needed so far. Only gripe I have is the throat isn't big enough for some things. I'm looking into the fabricator myself.
 
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