Throat space or stitch regulator?

That is the question.

So my hunt for a new machine is on. The three contenders have throat space of 9″, 10″ and 12″.

The 12″ would be awesome, but that machine is too wide for my Horn Quilter’s Dream cabinet. The next model down that’s in my price range features a throat space of 8.3″. Have to really think about that one. Or try to figure out what it would cost to modify the existing cabinet (or buy a new one).

The 9″ straight stitch only machine might work, if I can find one that uses regular sewing machine needles and has a speed control slider.

What I’m really intrigued by is the Bernina stitch regulator. If any of my readers has a Bernina with the stitch regulator, I’d love some feedback. I do like to FMQ anything large lap size and smaller. Larger projects are either done with straight line quilting or sent to the long armer. I can see myself making it work with 10″ of throat space that the 700 series has. I’m not so sure about the 8.5″ of throat space that the 500 series has. A local Baby Lock/Bernina dealer has a used 770QE in inventory. Would it be worth a test drive? A new one is more than I wanted to spend, but a used one is in the ball park.

3 Comments on “Throat space or stitch regulator?

  1. I don’t own a Bernina and I’m not sure if that’s the brand you have your heart set on but thought I’d share that I have a Pfaff Ambition 1.0. I’ve been using it to piece and quilt for the last 5 years. It has an 8″ throat with a speed regulator but no stitch regulator. I quilt all my own quilts usually with FMQ. For what it’s worth, having a bigger throat is more important to me than a stitch regulator would be 😀 Good luck on your search!!

  2. Not sold on any particular brand at this point! Merely curious as to how the Bernina stitch regulator works. My current machine has 11″ to the right of the needle. I don’t use it for anything besides machine quilting anymore. I piece on my Featherweights and use a small Elna for everything else. Might be a better option to sell the Horn table/cabinet and big machine as a set and buy a “sit down” longarm instead of another sewing machine.

  3. I’ve definitely been intrigued by sit down longarms but haven’t done any serious research. I’ll be curious to see if you go that way and what you decide on.

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