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Sewing machine life expectancy

Sewing machine life expectancy

Postby Violet » Wed Jun 30, 2010 6:49 pm

Bought a Pfaff 7570 a few years ago and just recently found out if the circuit board breaks it is non-fixable. HUH?? After spending that kind of money I am not very happy to learn it is now considered a throw-away machine. Talking with a dealer she says the average life is apx 5 years for a new machine line vs 3 years from just a few years ago. She says some people just keep using it as a straight stitch machine only and even heard women keep using them even though the screen is blank. I was looking for an attachment for my machine and she says don't wait long as the attachments are being phased out. Don't get me wrong, I love my machine and will be one of those that keep using it with or without the screen. I will go for a much lower end machine in the future. Sad thing is I have yet to use the embroidery attachment. Guess I better use it before it dies. Ladies, something to think about when looking for a new machine.
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Re: Sewing machine life expectancy

Postby Margo » Wed Jun 30, 2010 7:27 pm

Holey Moley! I never heard of such a thing!! :shock:

I'm upset because my computers have advanced to the point where they don't communicate with my Bernina embroidery machine without some upgrades, but the machine still works just fine and it's 10 years old.
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Re: Sewing machine life expectancy

Postby Lorna1021 » Wed Jun 30, 2010 8:31 pm

I suppose it is the computer parts that will date these machines. I hadn't thought of that. I have a new Bernina, but my previous Elna Super still works and I bought it back in 75!
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Re: Sewing machine life expectancy

Postby Violet » Wed Jun 30, 2010 10:20 pm

No problems yet with my machine except for regular maintenance. Did accidently drop a couple pins down the bobbin winder and took it in to have it checked and it's regular checkup. Seems there were a couple more pins that had slipped in and they just dropped to the bottom of the case. The repair guy mentioned that the board wasn't available but since he wasn't a Pfaff dealer didn't think much of it. Now I know it's true. All my previous machines ran for years and years so not too concerned, just extremely disppointed that Pfaff wouldn't continue to support such a great model. About a year after I bought it my local dealer said it was a great model and don't use as a trade in - keep it. Says the ones they do get sold almost immediately since it was so popular. Know I will be more educated on my next pick but don't see that coming any time soon. Husband almost ready to retire and neither one of us would spend that kind of money again.
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Re: Sewing machine life expectancy

Postby HAPPYCAMPBELL » Thu Jul 01, 2010 5:49 am

Violet I have a phaff 7570 and my sister dose too we have not had any problem with it I think that is not right my sister has had her 15 years and mine over 5 years
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Re: Sewing machine life expectancy

Postby kmouse » Thu Jul 01, 2010 5:50 am

If you think about it, sewing machines really have become computers that sew. I would first ask a Pfaff dealer about a computer board for your machine. He may have the ability to get the part/boards that a repair guy would not.

But I am afraid that mechanicals are going to be the only ones that last 30+ years. Bernina still makes a top notch mechanical (1008).
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Re: Sewing machine life expectancy

Postby alibeoley » Thu Jul 01, 2010 8:59 am

I doubt that Pfaff (or any other sewing machine company) would make their own circuit boards, so they are reliant on their suppliers, and I can't see them making old boards for long as the computer world changes so quickly. I expect they order a certain number of extras when that model finishes its production line and when they're gone, they're gone :? . Sadly we live in a throw-away world, even if we don't want to :roll:
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Re: Sewing machine life expectancy

Postby SueinNH » Thu Jul 01, 2010 5:42 pm

This is why I have a Bernina 830-----the original one :)

I love having a machine that is all mechanical !

That being said, I am on a Yahoo list for those with older Berninas and this comes up quite often. If I'm recalling correctly, one of the techs on the list has said that someone with electronics and/or computer hardware knowledge could repair these circuit boards pretty easily.

Sue
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Re: Sewing machine life expectancy

Postby Sewdreamy » Thu Jul 01, 2010 9:35 pm

Yikes! Something to think about (and research more) indeed. I love the computerized aspects of my Bernina 200E (upgraded with BSR). I would hate to have to go back to mechanical only machines. Computerized machines need to be supported indefinitely by the manufacturers.
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Re: Sewing machine life expectancy

Postby kmouse » Thu Jul 01, 2010 10:04 pm

Betty Jo,

Don't get me wrong. I LOVE the features of computerized machines. Pattern begin, auto buttonholes, BSR, embroidery...love it all. But computerized features will have a definite shelf life....don't know what it is...I hope it is a loooong time. But that is why I bought an Aurora 450 as a backup machine for my 200/730...and I still think about a mechanical. My mom has had a Bernina 100? mechanical for almost 30 years and it still sews like a champ. I know, because her Janome 9000 has bitten the dust and she still can sew with the Bernina.

But sewing still has the expectancy that 1) Machines will last forever 2) that all projects should be economical 3) any luxury machine should "pay for itself"

I find myself falling into catagories 1 & 2 but I drew the line at catagory 3. I was asked by a friend (a man) if I would consider digitizing and embroidering polo shirts or caps for hire. I said no. He was bewildered at this because, "with all this equipment, I should be wanting to put it to good use so it will pay for itself". This friend has a boat....so I asked ...considering the cost of the boat, insurance, fuel and marina fees... how many fish does he have to catch, clean, and sell in order to make his boat "pay for itself". He got the point.

I want my machines to last as long as they can. But I am realistic about computerized machines even thought I won't be ready if one bites the dust. I bought my machines for the features that I use (everything) and I sew every day. So I don't consider it a waste at all. A good machine (whatever brand) allows a person to enjoy their sewing...not fight with the machine.
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Re: Sewing machine life expectancy

Postby Sewdreamy » Fri Jul 02, 2010 10:30 am

kmouse, Yes, you are right. A backup mechanic is a really good idea. I just feel that computerized machines need to be supported longer than "they" support computers. I think the computer industry feels like you have a dinosaur if your computer is more than a couple of years old and often new software doesn't support very far backwards (work out ways older software can talk to newer software) in their new designs. I hope the computerized sewing industry doesn't move this direction, especially as the price of them has moved so high. I understand why that is given the major advances in machines of late. For instance, it occurred to me the other day that my embroidery module was actually a robot. Robotics are a fascinating part of the newest sewing machines. I love them, but can't replace them every couple of years, especially now that I am close to retirement. My plea to the industry is continue to support backwards. It would probably help encourage people to invest in the higher end machines.

Cheers, BJ
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Re: Sewing machine life expectancy

Postby Violet » Sun Feb 13, 2011 7:33 pm

Well, ladies. The worst finally happened. Last week in the middle of sewing a project the machine stopped dead. I mean DEAD DEAD DEAD!!! The only things working was the light bulb and back lighting to the screen. I have learned allot more since my last comment. First, the dealer who is fixing it said that a comglomerate bought Singer, Viking and Pfaff and since then the quality has gone down. Not only that, when they bought the companies they instructed them to throw away all parts to older machines. What an absolute stupid move!!!! I have further learned that any metalic material (needles, metal threads, etc) that drop into the machine slides down to the circuit board area and shorts the board and you now have a useless machine. Surely there was a way to prevent this. Sounds like a design flaw. It is now costing me $800 to fix since the board has to be sent to the Europe factory to be refurbished and then sent back. Will take a minimum of 2 weeks. Thankful my technician is giving me a loaner even if it is a very basic mechanical model. Please be careful about accidently dropping anything through the bobbin winding area or get the machine cleaned immediately after using metalic thread.
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Re: Sewing machine life expectancy

Postby EditorAnne » Mon Feb 14, 2011 4:06 pm

Omigod! That's terrible! I had no idea there was a danger in metallic threads getting caught in the machine. :(

I have an old Bernina 730 (mechanical, purchased by my mother in 1968), and it runs like a dream, but I do want a super-duper new Bernina.

Does anyone know whether Bernina has adopted similar policies? I know the company is still family owned, and they used to stockpile huge quantities of spare parts, but I don't know whether they still do. Anyone have any wisdom about the life expectancy of a new Bernina?
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Re: Sewing machine life expectancy

Postby grannyagnes » Mon Feb 14, 2011 7:05 pm

alibeoley wrote:I doubt that Pfaff (or any other sewing machine company) would make their own circuit boards, so they are reliant on their suppliers, and I can't see them making old boards for long as the computer world changes so quickly. I expect they order a certain number of extras when that model finishes its production line and when they're gone, they're gone :? . Sadly we live in a throw-away world, even if we don't want to :roll:

Very, very true. I have purposely gone back to and will stay with my mechanical work horse machines after I had a machine, newer model with plastic gears that I plain wore out. I also really didn't like the light weight of it.
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Re: Sewing machine life expectancy

Postby Violet » Mon Feb 14, 2011 9:20 pm

Bernina is an awesome brand of machine but also comes with an huge price point. I checked out the lowest end mechanical - model 1008 - at my local dealer and it came in at $1000. Way to much for the average sewer. The Babylock BL9 came in at $249. The Husqvarna/Viking came in at $199 but not inclined to seriously consider them after what I learned. Will be checking on a Janome and Brother to see about them, compare all models/features/price point and seriously think about getting one as a backup.
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