I have been doing my best to get along with my sewing machine, but I think it is fair to say that tensions between us are pretty high. I purchased this machine specifically because of its large throat and free-motion quilting features. However, since the day she came out of the box, she has been fussy about quilting (at best) and down-right beastly about it (normally). I have spent the better part of the past year researching what could possibly be wrong with my machine. I took her in for servicing. I changed needles. I changed thread. I adjusted everything I could adjust (tension, stitch length, and on and on and on…). I visited other quilt shops that specialize in this brand of machines on vacation to talk to even more people about possible things I could try. After much frustration, I got back in touch with the woman who sold the machine to me. I was at a conference at the time, so it goes without saying that she is not really local. I really appreciate that she took the time to respond to my emails. After much back and forth, I decided to take my machine back to the local dealer / technician for more discussion and possibly servicing on Friday.
As it is an hour drive for me to get to the closest technician who can work on my machine, I took my husband with me, and we talked a lot about my sewing machine and my level of frustration on the drive there. We agreed that I have no reason to be personally upset with the people we were about to interact with, but my level of sadness and frustration with my machine is such that I did not trust that I could necessarily be calm and rational. So, he did a lot of the talking initially, and we spent a good amount of time with the shop owner and technician reviewing why we purchased the machine and everything that we had done to date to work around the problem. The shop owner and the technician agreed that, based on what they could tell from us, there is likely something pretty wrong with my machine. We did leave it with them for a day to allow them the opportunity to inspect and work with my machine.
Today, we stopped back by the shop to pick the Beast up and bring her home. She still quilts (or doesn’t quilt, in my opinion) like this:
While at the store today, I was able to use my quilting foot and exact same thread on a sister machine to show that it SHOULD be possible to have continuous, gorgeous quilting. My machine… well, she just does not want to quilt. So, after discussing options, a new hook mechanism is on order (and is thankfully under warranty). At this point, I am fairly pessimistic about my machine, but it would be nice if a mechanical problem and solution could be found.
- My husband is an invaluable resource. He can help defuse intensely emotional discussions in productive and constructive ways. I will take him with me when we bring the Beast back for her new parts.
- Talking to someone over the phone (which is how I have interacted with the technician/shop due to their lack of proximity) is not the most ideal way to transmit information. By being in the store in person, I was able to make connections with people, and I am much more confident that we all agree there is something wrong with my particular machine.
- Go with your gut! I have felt that something has been really wrong with my machine for a long time (and I know it is getting worse), but I kept chalking it up to my lack of knowledge / skill. It can be hard for me to be assertive, but I need to learn to speak up sooner when I know something is wrong. I can always count on the fact that my husband is on my team and take him with me to help!
Thankfully, I have lots of piecing work for the near future, and my sewing machine doesn’t complain about that work! Hopefully I will have a much more positive outlook in a few week after her new parts arrive and get installed. Heck, it would be good to finally get to know her real name. I’m sure that underneath that tough, Beastly exterior, she is a sweet and loving machine who just wants me to know her name.