Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Hurray for my Janome Horizon! So here's the scoop. . . . .


Five years ago, I started wanting to update my sewing machine.  I asked a lot of my experienced quilter friends and I found that Janome was offering a lot of the features I wanted in my next machine. . . . but not enough of them to make me make the leap!  Sooooo I kept quilting with my Elna's Quilter's Dream.  You see, I bought that machine with the $$ from my first commissioned quilt, so its pretty dear to my heart.  Plus its never broke down on me and I even managed to get all the black sharpie marker off when my then naughty creative 3-year old thought it should be ALL colored black. (ahhhhhh goood timessssssss LOL!)

Finally last year Janome came out with the Horizon 7700.  It had almost all the features I've been wanting without an outrageous price tag (I guess that's a matter of opinion LOL!).  After a weekend of sewing here are my impressions:

Pros:
  • Large 11" work bed (harp) - you can fit a lot of quilt in that baby!
  • 5 LCD lights for aging eyes
  • quiet and smooth sewing
  • 15 feet  - including 3 Free Motion Feet 
  • Front Panel that clicks open so you can check your threading
  • Knee lift
  • Automatic Scissors (a gift from God!)
  • 250 stitches including 3 alphabets and a ton of applique stitches 
  • extension table included
  • Built in even feed foot that you can change feet on
Cons:
  • No bobbin alarm
  • Its a bit finicky  - so was my Elna
  • Heavy  and big - 40 lbs and hard to reach around
  • Some of the features are hard to get at if its in the sewing table (mine isn't)
  • Should come with an Accufeed 1/4" foot - bought one though for under $30
  • Not such a big fan of touch screens - would like buttons instead

But gosh - I do LOVE my new machine and can see where it has true potential.  After a weekend of a lot of sewing, I'm totally getting used to having a knee lift and love having a fairy that cuts my threads for me.  Love the lighting!  Love how smooth it runs.  I haven't had any problems going over thick seams which has been the complaint of some.   I can tell that this is just the beginning.   So all in all - VERY happy with the buy.

One thing though. . .wasn't too happy with the whole process of buying a machine.  I had three dealers that are within an hour drive of here.  I went to the first shop because they have such a good rep.  Once I was there, they were very knowledgable, friendly, and treated their customers right.  But when it came to giving me a price they quoted me one that was higher than retail - then with a little discount - trading in the Elna - it came to just below the actual MSRP.  You can imagine my surprise!    Didn't want to buy the machine for that much so I started saving and waiting and praying (note quite in that order LOL!)

Two weeks ago, my great husband took me for a ride to one of the other dealers.  They gave a really good impression too.  When it came to the bottom line, they quoted me a price $600 less than the first one without the trade-in.  Plus they included the carry case (which doesn't come with it), a big thread collection and the thread caddy.  They also have a 5 yr extended warrenty and service for 2 yr which is really nice.  Both shops had unlimited lessons.  So without much thought (and now that I had half of it saved!), I took the deal.

Anyways - I learned a big lesson.  DO YOUR PRICE RESEARCH!  Once I started looking, I found that I could easily find that I got a nice fair price - not rock bottom, but a fair one.  The price on these machines were all over the place and it was not unheard of dealers quoting prices higher than MSRP!  I'm not quite sure what I would have done if none of the dealers would deal - but I'm glad my new one did!

 Any comments - good or bad on the horizon are welcomed.  Any questions too !

3 comments:

Carol A. Babineau said...

Very interesting. I am happy for you and the new machine too! Nothing like a good stitch, etc., to make your day.
Good luck............when you are ready, show us some new work you did with it.

quilthexle said...

Congrats on your new machine! Mine is almost a year old now - and I'm still in love. I smile every time when I see it, waiting for me an the table ;-)) So, I think you're going to have a lot of fun with the HORIZON !!

quiltsbylois said...

I loved your review of the 7700. I love mine but like you would prefer a wheel instead of buttons and an empty bobbin reminder! But my goodness , what an amazing machine. I love her to bits!