Monday, July 25, 2016

Sewing Machine Review - Janome HD3000


If you've followed along with my sewing machine woes, you know that I had to put my Juki in time out until I am willing to spend (a lot of) money to get him fixed.  For slightly more than I'd spend on the repairs, I got a brand new machine.  This is my first Janome, so I'm getting used to the differences.

Janome HD3000 all opened up
Top section, some of the stitches.  Love how it shows the foot to use, not just the letter!



Pros:

  • FAST.  Like sew your finger without realizing it, fast.
  • Cheaper than my Juki
  • Heavy duty - no grinding of the gears and a time out message when I try to force it through all the layers (so far I've only done 3 layers of fabric, 3 layers of interfacing, 2 layers of vinyl and 1 layer of peltex with the needle it came with, not a leather or microtex one)
  • The needle plate has markings for both English and Metric measurements, and the lines are before the foot, so I can line up a little better.

  • Drop in bobbin, with a clear cover means you can see how low it's getting.
  • Extra feet are stored on top, in their own little slot.  It came with several feet standard, plus the package I got had an extra glide foot, which I love for vinyl!  You can't see clearly in the picture, but it also has the letter by the foot slot

  • Opening up the side with the bulb is much easier than on any of my other machines.  If I get a thread tangle in there, it won't involve a screwdriver and worry about losing screws.

Cons:

  • Has a normal sewing machine light bulb.  I'm used to the LED that most new ones have and this doesn't give as 'white' of a light, or as bright.  It also gets hot!

  • No fancy extras - I miss my thread cutter, auto lock stitch, needle up/down button, and speed control that limits how fast I can go even when I push the pedal to the metal!
  • The stitch selected indicator isn't very bright, so I have to look closely to make sure I haven't bumped it.

You can almost tell it's on 13, which is the 'normal' stitch
  •  You really have to push in the button to make it go backwards, but it is a big button.
  • Not sure it is actually a con - the needle only adjusts position to the left, not left and right like the Juki.  It does however move continuously, so you can really nudge it to get an exact seam allowance if you wanted.
Top does the width of the zig-zag and also adjusts needle position.  Bottom is how long the stitches are

Tricky bits:


  • I'm still getting used to not having the needle automatically stop in the down position.  Hand turning the wheel is also a little bit of a learning curve because there is no mark or groove to line up so you know the needle is actually at the highest position.
  • The foot pedal is very sensitive.  Like I might start using only one toe to push down until I get used to it - sensitive.
  • The needle threader is different from the Brother and Juki machines, so I'm still slow at threading and have consulted the manual a few times to make sure I was doing it right.
  • Changing the stitches is done with a knob on the side of the machine, which can get confusing if you are staring intently at your project and trying to raise/lower the needle but grab too low...
    I've accidentally grabbed and turned the bottom one a few times.  That's the stitch type adjuster.
  • When I'm using the zipper foot I can't start at the edge of my fabric or it will try to eat it.  If I start in about an inch, back up a little (but not too close to the edge still) and then go forward, it is fine.  I may have to start using a leader of my embroidery stabilizer scraps if I really want to start at the edge.  I think it has to do with the fact that the fabric is barely on the feed dogs, so it doesn't move it forward.  With the normal foot, it doesn't seem to be a problem.
All in all, I do like this machine.  I've only done a little sewing with it, but I'm looking forward to doing MUCH more!  It did great on my quilt binding, the vinyl sewing, and making a Wisteria wallet so far.  Since I'm trying to put it through the paces, I'm actually working on my UFO's to see how it does with the ones that got put in time out from my other machines.  I have high hopes that this one will be my workhorse and hold me over until I finally break down and buy an industrial machine.

3 comments:

  1. Good luck with your new Janome. I have two Janomes and like them, but I struggle with thick materials.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks! Are your Janome the HD ones or the regular? I'm hoping to put mine through the paces this week and sew some vinyl straps and lots of layers on a purse.

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  2. totally interesting and useful for me thankyou

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