Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Sewing Machine Review Janome Memory Craft 6000

A  couple of weeks ago SewMamaSew requested sewing machine reviews from bloggers.   I've seen machine reviews posted on many websites, but this request was different.   The request was for sewing machine reviews for any make or model regardless of age.   So here goes, I'm reviewing my circa 1985 Janome Memory Craft 6000. 

It's an oldie but a goodie, and it's served me well over the years, I bought it new and I paid around $1500.00 . So, in terms of todays dollars it would be $3260.00 based on the Consumer Price Index Inflation Calculator.   In it's day, this model was the top of the line, and the first generation of the computerized home sewing machine models.   Today, it would hardly compare with the top of the line machine.

This machine has been a real workhorse for me.   It's sewn everything from the finest of silk to leather and jeans.  It's seen a miles of thread and many needles through the years.   Although I don't sew as much as I used to, during the first 15 years of it's life it was operating for at least an hour a day 6 to 7 days a week.   It has only seen the repair shop a few times for a tune up.  Now having said that I'm a stickler for quality needles, quality thread and regular cleaning of the machine.

It features basic and utility stitches, buttonholer and some "embroidery" stitching.   Novelty stitches include an airplane, alligator, penguin, parrot, butterfly, umbrella, numbers and 26 letters of the alphabet in script and block.  The numbers 0-9 are also included.   The size of these designs is quite limited when compared to today's machines, and programming is quite the exercise in a patience as each design is associated with a numeric value that needs to be entered followed by the M button, so to write SUE you would have to punch in 58M 60M 44M. 

There is a wide variety of utility stiches which I have used over the years.  The buttonhole quality is good and you can easily make a corded button hole using the button hole foot.  One unique feature of this machine is it's overclock stitch and foot.  Before I purchased a serger, I used this stitch a lot to finish seams.  It doesn't cut the seam like an serger, but it does a good job of simulating an over lock stitch (considering it only has two threads to work with).

The machine comes with lots of feet that are neatly stored in the top of the machine, each foot has it's own special slot.  I'm sure that saved me from losing them over the years, I still have all the original feet.  The zipper foot is a bit unusual, but does the trick.  The regular foot has a neat feature on it that allows you to sew over "fabric bumps" quite easily.   Hemming jeans is a breeze with this machine.  Over the years I've purchased a number of specialty feet from various suppliers and an ruffler attachment works well on this machine.

If someone is in the market for a machine and can find a well cared for Janome Memory Craft 6000, I'd recommend it.  Definitely take it for a test drive, as machines of this vintage can vary greatly in condition.

I'm considering an upgrade to a new machine in the next year or so. Mostly to take advantage of the computerized embroidery capabilities in today's machines.   Will I ditch the old work horse, absolutely not, I know it well and we've become good friends over the years.

Christiana


5 comments:

  1. I think Janomes are just a wonderful brand of sewing machines, so I'm not surprised that your machine has served you so well! But then again I could be biased since I am a Janome girl myself!

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  2. I bought my about 9 months ago, and use it all the time. I am probably the 3rd. owner of this machine and I really love it. Just found out that I will have to have the motor replaced and I will because this machine will do almost everything that the newer ones can do.

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  3. This sewing machine was recently given to me by my mother who received it from her cousin who got is from someone else so you can see it's been passed around quite freely and I love it. It's in prefect working condition and still has all it's original feet. This really is a quality machine that sews through just about anything. I'm so happy it landed in my hands and this is where it will stay.

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  4. I have the same machine and bought mine new too! I have purchased just about every optional foot for her and she still sews like a dream and has NEVER been serviced. I didn't find out until I started quilting recently that it has "infinite" needle positions. This is one great machine!

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  5. Just a PS- I was considering "upgrading" too (Horizon 8900) but decided not to bother. I did buy an upgraded needle plate for it which is nice as it has the little button for opening the bobbin case. Oh, and the needle thread still works great too!

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