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.