Bernina Fan Club Archives

February 95

Date: Wed, 1 Feb 1995 06:15:17 -0500
Subject: Re: Teeny Bernina?

The smallest true Bernina I know of was the 801.   Any machine marked  or
called Bernette is probably an import from the far East.  Bernina did that to
get in on the numbers of sales in the low cost machine areas. About 1988, I
think.  We sold a lot of them, they were better than many, but  a true
BERNINA  will be so named.
There was a little  machine in the 70's called Alta.  I never saw one, but
they were probably imports also.
Only true Berninas are made in the factory in Steckborn, Switzerland.  
Probably you haven't read my bio. in the Introd. folder--I was a Bernina
dealer for about 8 yrs, ending in  Mar. 1991, when we closed our shop.  I
sold enough 1230s when they were new to earn a Bernina-sponsored trip to
Switzerland and a tour through their factory.
I still sew on the 1230--it seems to be a wonderful, if not perfect, model
for quilters.  I particularly like the one-touch control, rather than
scrolling through the screen for choices.
Enjoy, but the only tiny Berninas I know of are toys or antiques.
Date: Wed, 1 Feb 1995 06:15:17 -0500
Subject: Re: Teeny Bernina?

The smallest true Bernina I know of was the 801.   Any machine marked  or
called Bernette is probably an import from the far East.  Bernina did that to
get in on the numbers of sales in the low cost machine areas. About 1988, I
think.  We sold a lot of them, they were better than many, but  a true
BERNINA  will be so named.
There was a little  machine in the 70's called Alta.  I never saw one, but
they were probably imports also.
Only true Berninas are made in the factory in Steckborn, Switzerland.  
Probably you haven't read my bio. in the Introd. folder--I was a Bernina
dealer for about 8 yrs, ending in  Mar. 1991, when we closed our shop.  I
sold enough 1230s when they were new to earn a Bernina-sponsored trip to
Switzerland and a tour through their factory.
I still sew on the 1230--it seems to be a wonderful, if not perfect, model
for quilters.  I particularly like the one-touch control, rather than
scrolling through the screen for choices.
Enjoy, but the only tiny Berninas I know of are toys or antiques.
Date: Wed, 1 Feb 1995 10:49:52 -0500
Subject: Re: Bernina Digest 1/31/95


You must have the wrong Barb.  My sewing machine is on top of an old cabinet.
I do have an expensive computer chair , which can be raised , arms can be
raised or lowered.  About 200.  The chair might be able to help you get  your
neck and arm in better postion.  My son is a computer guru, and he said chair
postion , really makes a difference, so why not on the sewing machine.

I have a 1530 and sure wish they would come out with a book to help me figure
out some of these works of arts.  Still trying to get the buttonholes.  I
think I would go back to a Pfaff.  I have been hearing so many negative
things about the sewing.  Why don't they make a machine that just works on
  Why does  everyone else have to make up the difference?  Time to fix the
Date: Wed, 1 Feb 1995 15:46:35 -0500
Subject: Re: Machine Quilting Problem


You were asking about the correct height for the chair/table etc while
machine quilting;  I've found that experimenting with heights was the ONLY
thing that finally helped find the correct height for me.  I am very tall
but, I found that a conference table, with 6 inch blocks under it, that my DH
made for me, works the best in relieving neck and shoulder strain.  I'm not
saying that it is perfect, but it helped.  My neck and shoulders still get
very tired.  I also use a secretary's chair (from Office Max, was NOT cheap!)
that can be raised and lowered.  It is worth its weight in gold.  We put one
at the computer table too.  Stephanie, you could use something else that
works wonders for me;  put on your best puppy dog eyes and Dh will massage
your shoulders and neck!!  ;D          -Debby  
Date:    Wed, 01 Feb 95 16:12 EST
SUBJECT:     (FWD) Zig zag not by choice

Hi B fans!  I have had a #1030 for five years and love it.  I yearn to
upgrade of course but someday...
I wanted to share a problem friends w/ #1260 and #1530 have had...When
these machines are set to sew straight, they have gone into zig zag
stitch all by themselves.  The local dealer did replace an internal cable
last week but into the weekend the #1260 did it again...
I would appreciate it if anyone who has faced a problem like this would
advise me what was done to correct the situation.  My friend with the 1530
has faced this problem the past year and a half involving three different
machines...I appreciate your help.
                                        Joyce W
Date: Thu, 02 Feb 1995 00:12:00 -0500 (EST)
Subject: Optimum Sewing table height

This is in reply to the person asking about the above...I understand that it
should be just like for computer work.  Your sitting position should be so
that when your feet are flat on the floor, your thighs are parallel to the
floor, your back is straight, and your table (working surface) should then be
at a height that allows your forearms to be parallel with your thighs. (I
picture right angles, right over each other)  
Sorry, this is a rudimentary sketch of the position your body should be
sitting in at work.  There should be good lighting as well, from the back over 
your shoulder and also on the area of the machine where the action is.  Mary
Date: Thu, 02 Feb 1995 00:36:58 -0500 (EST)
Subject: Bernina Digest 2/1/95


The other things this "teeny" Benina could be - the Serger! this man might not 
know a serger from a sewing machine and the serger is called a Bernette or
something similar? and it is about the size of a Featherweight sewing machine

Date: Thu, 2 Feb 1995 08:39:11 -0500 (EST)
Subject: Re: ZigZag not by Choice

    I work with Bernina machines and have seen this problem twice; 
however, the owner of the machines DID NOT have their machines on surge 
protectors and one actually left her machine plugged in ALL THE TIME.  I 
think sometimes people do not understand that these machines are 
computers and must be protected from the serges we have in electricity 
especially in the summer when there are so many storms and fluctuations 
in the current.  We tell all our customers to get a serge protector and 
always unplug (not turn off) UNPLUG their machines.  One of my friend has 
just experienced this problem with her 930 after many years of sewing.  
She moved however into a more urban setting where there is a greater 
demand on the electricity.  She has to have the computer board fixed so 
it will not trip into zigzag.
    I have been through 2 serge protectors in three years.  It is 
important to check them also to make sure they are still protecting.  A 
dim light means the board has been hit and the protection lessened. It is 
important to read the directions with the protector.
    Just a note about my experiences......Hope you have a good day.....
                   Jacque F
Date:         Thu, 02 Feb 95 09:10:22 EST
Subject:      Re: Bernina Digest 1/31/95

Barb mentioned trying to figure out the buttonholes on the 1530 -- I have
an 1130 and the button holes drive me crazy.  Am I being too picky or does
anyone else want to have more than 1, maybe 2 threads wide of a gap to cut
open??  I recently finished a jacket that I had started I don't remember
how many years ago: all it needed was the buttonholes (9 of them I think).
I finally sat down with an interfaced scrap and did a whole bunch
(documenting my settings to boot!) and got a reasonable buttonhole, but
what a pain!  Am I expecting too much?
Date: Thu,  2 Feb 95 23:15:00 UTC
Subject: Bernina Digest 2/1/95
My 830 came the other day.  I love it.  I had forgotten what a great workhorse
this is.  I will use it for machine quilting and sewing, when the 1630 is out
for repairs.  No word yet on my 1630, it has been 2 weeks today.  They told me
it should be back any time now.
Date: Fri,  3 Feb 95 11:23:00 UTC
Subject: Re: Bernina Digest 1/31/95

BArb, good idea about the computer chair.
What is wrong with your Bernina buttonholes??? I LOVE mine, one of the
things I bought the Bernina for was the quality of the buttonholes! Maybe
someone here can help you figure out the problem.
Date: Fri, 3 Feb 1995 11:24:55 -0500
Subject: Re: ZigZag not by Choice

Dear Joyce,

I have the 1530 and have not experienced the zig zag problem you wrote about.
 I have been a Bernina owner (830 then the 1530) since about 1977 and have
never had a problem any my machines.  I've ALWAYS found my Bernina dealer to
be excellent, in the various states we have lived in.  I've also always
expected excellent service and have gotton nothing but outstanding service
from Bernina. I am disappointed and surprised to hear that there is a
problem.  My 1530 is 3 years old.  

Date: Fri, 3 Feb 1995 11:32:57 -0500
Subject: Re: Buttonholes

I am puzzled at why Barb is having a problem with buttonholes. I have a 1530
and think it makes the most wonderful buttonholes I have ever had on any
machine, certainly better than my Pfaff 1473. Barb is talking about "going
back" to a Pfaff. Well, I use both machines, and the only thing the Pfaff is
better at is something requiring the walking foot, namely straight line
quilting, because of its even feed ability.  So I keep it for that and also
take it to my daughter's when I am baby sitting there because it is lighter
than the 1530. Barb, did you have the lessons with your dealer and ask
her/him about the buttonholes? If not, you should, and even if you have
already had the lessons, I'm sure the dealer will be happy to sit down with
you and go over the automatic buttonholes. I never use the non-automatic one.

Date: Fri, 3 Feb 1995 11:40:13 -0500
Subject: squealing

My lovely new Bernina has taken to squealing.  It's a soft, faint sound that
fades after it's been running a few stitches.  Oiling doesn't make any
difference.  Any suggestions?

Btw, I bought my machine from Anne's fabrics and we went through this thing
about my payments through AVCO.  They were scheduled to be $70 a month.  The
first bill arrived... $112 a month.  I called AVCO and I'm basically stuck.
 Gggrrrr.  I want honesty.  Sigh....

Date: Fri, 3 Feb 1995 15:34:47 -0500
Subject: Re: Bernina Buttonholes

To the gal who is having trouble with her buttonholes:

My 1530 makes gorgeous buttonholes.  If you are having trouble, I'd go into
the dealership and have them teach you.  You must be doing something wrong if
you are unsatisfied.  :)           

Date: Fri, 3 Feb 1995 21:10:15 -0500 (EST)
Subject: Too tight thread problem 

I sent this message earlier this week but never saw it show up. Apologies 
if it's a duplicate.

Sometimes when I am doing free motion quilting, the tension on the bobbin
thread gets so tight it pulls the top thread completely through the quilt
and it is possible to rip out the quilting stitches just by pulling the
bobbin thread. It does not happen consistently, even in one quilting
session, although it seems to happen most often while doing a sharp curve
(such as in a feathered wreath). I know this happens to other people also
(because I always check out the backs of machine quilted quilts); I want
to know what causes it and how to avoid it. My working theory is that it
is related the the speed at which I am moving the piece and also the
tightness of the curve and has nothing to do with the tension on the
bobbin. Anybody got any ideas? 

Date: Sat, 4 Feb 1995 09:44:20 -0500
Subject: Re: Bernina Digest 2/3/95

Hi back again,

I bought my machine, they give me instant instructions for  afew minutes.
 Try to go back for more instructions, they said read your manual.  I did,
but felt it was not very clear.  Now the store is out of business.  Would
like to learn more about my 1530.  There is no book written on how to do
things?   My friend Brenda sent me directions on how to do monogramming and
it was a big help.  My machine seems to be in great order.  I am in back of a
tv station and have no interference.  Maybe everyone having trouble has
defective parts.  Bernina in my eyes is getting a bad reputation, too many
complaints.  I sure would love email instructions for different kinds of
buttonholes, if someone is feeling charitable.  Still love that Pfaff.
Barb---Thank you for listening.
Date: Sat, 4 Feb 1995 17:35:17 -0500
Subject: Re: Too tight thread problem

To Cathy,

Yes, I agree that the tight stitches on the bobbin are from the speed that
you curve on free motion quilting.  I've tried going slower, that helps some.
 Do you thread the bobbin thread thru the eye of the bobbin when you free
motion quilt?  

Date: Sun,  5 Feb 95 18:00:00 UTC
Subject: Bernina DIgest 2/4/95

Hi everyone!  I bought myself a new book called Easy Machine Quilting.  It
looks very nice.  Lots of great tips.  It is kind of set up like a workbook,
where you go through lessons.  If I find any new info I will post it here.
Date: Sun, 5 Feb 1995 19:27:26 -0500
Subject: Re: Too tight thread problem

I've had this problem a lot.  
Finally seemed to solve it by changing to a black-latch bobbin case.  But we
never did figure out WHY it happens.  We've had everything checked and double
And I finally found somerthing the B refused to do:
free-form quilt with mono/nylon on both top and bottom. !!!
But my Pfaff 1475 did great with that.
I'm going to try next  Addy's recommended  "soft" thread.  Gotta go back
and find the exact name.  
Still prefer Bernina.
Good Luck.   Ida
Date: Mon, 06 Feb 1995 10:06:43 EST
Subject: Walking foot

I have a dream........

I use my walking foot for machine quilting in straight lines that are
not in the ditch. I realized that I have two dreams/ ideas that would
make it even better. I like to use the #10 foot for stitch-in-the-
ditch because the toungue in the ditch puts my stitches right where
I want them. So basically I want a walking foot with replacable feet.
The other dream is a 1/4" walking foot. 

Does anyone else have this idea? Does anyone know how to tell bernina
what we want? 

Date: Mon, 06 Feb 1995 10:14:44 EST
Subject: RE: Too tight thread problem

Are you using a straight stitch throat plate? This will help the pulling
on the back.

Date: Mon, 6 Feb 1995 10:50:04 -0500
Subject: Re:  Walking Foot

Tell them we want a built in walking foot.  Then we could attach any other
foot and engage or not the walking foot.  Kind of like the built in walking
foot on Pfaff.

Ida T
Date: Mon, 6 Feb 1995 13:29:33 -0500 (EST)
Subject: Re: Too tight thread problem

I am threading the bobbin thread through the little hole; I don't have 
the black bobbin (I recall a discussion on this bobbin several weeks ago, 
but don't remember all that was said except that it costs _a lot_ more 
than the regular bobbin); I don't have the straight stitch throat plate - 
maybe I will pick this up at the next quilt show I go to. 

These are all good suggestions. Thanks,
Date: Mon, 6 Feb 95 18:12 PST
Subject: new machine

>I am a new quilter and have found my old sewing machine just doesn't cut
it.  The store where I take my various classes sells Bernina machines.  I am
wondering if any of you experienced quilters out there can tell me the
advantages of Bernina over Pfaff? My next stop is the Pfaff dealership to
check them out but any input before I make this purchase would be greatly
appreciated.  My current machine is 18 years old and since I anticipate
keeping a new one for a long time I don't want to make a major mistake.
Subject: Re: New Machine
Date: Mon, 6 Feb 95 21:10:36 PST

Hi Cheryl;

The needle up/down choice and the knee lift are just two of the reasons that I
have stuck with Bernina, not to mention that in the 12 years that I owned my
Bernina 930 I never had to have anything but the annual cleaning.  I recently
bought the 1530 after drooling over it for about 6 years.  My DH bought me a
lightweight Pfaff to carry around to classes, but I gave it to my daughter and 
got a featherweight instead for that purpose.  Good luck.  :0}

Jean P
Date: Tue, 7 Feb 1995 07:55:58 -0500
Subject: Re: Bernina Digest 2/7/95

Cathy, re:  Bernina vs. Pfaff, I don't know.  BUT my 25-year-old Singer would
piece accurately, I spring for the Bernina 1080 a bit over a year ago, and
I've not regretted it for a second.  The machine is incredibly accurate,sews
smoothly, does 1/4" seams (with the marked foot) perfectly accurately, and is
simply a dream to use.  -Addy

Ida ... it is 15 below zero in coastal Maine (here) this morning!  BRRR.
 Yesterday got up to a tropical zero!  Becca, who was in West Lafayette for 4
years is now in Chicago, where she says it's cold and windy, too.  She kind
of misses Purdue, I think.  --Addy
Date: Tue, 7 Feb 1995 08:14:00 -0500 (EST)
Subject: Re: Bernina Digest 2/3/95

Dear Barb,

      This isn't meant to be critical but I sell Berninas and the only 
people I ever hear complain are the ones that don't take the lessons or 
buy at a quilt show when everyone else has been "using and abusing" the 
machines.  The 1530 is a high tech machine that is capable of about 900 
functions.  Individuals need instructions on how to use them.  Bernina 
dealers must offer lessons when they sell the machines, that is part of 
the contract.  Other Bernina dealer DO NOT have to give lessons on 
machines they do not sell.  It is costly to the dealer to have personnel 
teach especially if they made no profit from the sale.  At G-St we charge 
$25/hr for instruction.  Six hours of lessons come with the 1530 at 2 
hour intervals.  You may want to check with your nearest Bernina dealer 
to see how they break up the lessons.  You may only need a few hours to 
go over the functions you don't know.

     I am sorry you are having trouble but to give Berninas a bad rap 
isn't fair either because they are wonderful machines.  If it is any help 
to anyone else, I would like to caution you all not to buy machine where 
you do not get lessons (at shows) or from stores that have not been in 
busy a long time.  When I was young I got stung on my first (non Bernina) 
machine.  I got a "GOOD DEAL"!  When I went back ...same 
management and nothing applied.  Never again.  The store you buy from is 
as important as the machine you buy.
Date: Tue, 7 Feb 1995 08:33:40 -0500
Subject: Re:  New Machine

This is in response to Cheryl R who is looking for a new machine to
replace her 18yr. old one.


I have a Pfaff Tiptronic 1171 (I think that's the #, it's the lowest end model
with the dual feed feature) and I own a Bernina 1530.  I had the Pfaff first,
became frustrated with what it would not do, and bought the Bernina about
8 yrs. after buying the Pfaff.  I am a quilter.  I wanted a machine that 
would do free form machine quilting with invisible nylon thread.  That Pfaff
just ate nylon thread - knots, loops, ugh!!  When it came time to buy a new
machine, I took a sample quilt "sandwich" and nylon thread to both the Pfaff
dealer and the Bernina dealer.  With the Pfaff dealer sitting next to me, we
could *not* (and this bears repeating) *not* get the high end (at that time
it was the 1475CD, I believe) Pfaff machine to cooperate cheerfully and do
free form machine quilting with invisible nylon thread.  I found too, that with
my tiptronic, I was going back to my dealer on a regular to get it unjammed
and fine tuned.  I though I had a lemon, but when I couldn't get the higher
model to cooperate, I went to the Bernina dealer.

Again, and I highly recommend this, I took a sample of the quilt sandwich and
tried to do free form machine quilting with the nylon thread (regular thread in
the bobbin.)  First time through, perfect results.  I figured, this must be
beginner's luck.  A friend let me come over to her house and test drive her
Bernina 1230 (which is no longer made.)  Again, perfect results.  I bought the
1530 and I have not looked back.  I've had it over a year now and it performs
absolutely everything I ask it to do, with no arguing.  Perfect buttonholes
effortlessly - with the automatic do-dad.

Now, when you go to your dealer, please take the time to use the machine you
are interested in.  Take your own fabric or quilt sandwich samples.  Dealers
use that stiff stuff they call fabric to demonstrate all the bells and whistles
but you should take some real fabric that you would normally use.  And try
not to be influenced by the bells and whistles that come with some of the
computerized machines.  Machines that will hook up to computers, for crying
out loud.  You are interested in quilting.  That is your primary interest.
Get a machine that does a really great straight stitch and will easily lower
feed dogs for free form machine quilting.  The Bernina's feed dog switch is on
the side of the machine, near the fly wheel.  The Pfaff's is down under the 
machine, inside the guts that hold the bobbin case.  If you have a sewing table
with a plastic insert that surrounds your machine, like I do, you will be
fighting with this one nasty feature each and every time you want to lower or
raise the feed dogs.

And now one final comment.  I would not recommend the new Bernina with the
rotary hook system.  This is my personal experience and so I am biased.  I know
there are some owners who are absolutely with their new machines, but I
subscribe to some sewing machine newsletters, and there is usually at least
a couple of letters in each issue, complaining not only about this new machine,
but Bernina's lack of admission that something may be wrong.  The Pfaff that
I fought with for years has a rotary hook system.  That machine would not hold
a tension and I would get this mess on the back side of my quilt all too

Addendum to the final comment above.  Since you mention you are interested in
in quilting, I recommend the single stitch throat plate (for any machine you
might buy), and the walking foot.  I love my Bernina.  So much, that I have
not been able to part with it long enough to take it back to the dealer for
its well baby check-up.

Ida T
Date: Tue, 7 Feb 1995 13:21:49 -0500
Subject: Re: New Machine



Date: Wed, 8 Feb 1995 10:06:46 -0500
Subject: Stitch Length

This may sound like a stupid question but on the 1260 what stitch length
would some one recommend for doing paper piecing?  My dealer does not have
the guide class scheduled until April and I want to try some paper piecing.

The book that I have said to use about 18 stitches to an inch but I have not
figured what that corresponds to on the Bernina.

Thank you!!

Mia V.
Subject: new machine
Date: Wed, 8 Feb 1995 19:36:10 -0500 (EST)

Ida mentioned that she's having trouble parting with her machine long
enough for its well baby check .  I just had my 1000 done last week and
can tell a difference.  Even though I make every effort to oil etc on
schedule, I could still tell this checkup made a difference.  Now, if my
GYN dr. can't make me sound so much better after my check up next week,
maybe I'll go to my Bernina dealer next time!

Corky L
Date:         Thu, 09 Feb 95 07:42:31 EST
Subject:      Satin stitch

Does anyone have any advice on using satin stitch for machine applique?
Specifically, which stitch-length and width, which foot, etc. I took a
class years ago before I got my 1260 and my machine at the time had so
few options that I didn't pay much attention to the fine details. I did
a test run a few weeks ago on the Bernina and it seemed that it was having
trouble advancing--it would get stuck on the high stack of stitches it was
zig-zagging. Does the trick with putting folded fabric under the presser
foot to even-out the surface work with applique? How do you keep enough
fabric under the foot without sewing into your project? Any advice would
be much appreciated. Thanks in advance.

Date:         Thu, 09 Feb 95 07:49:30 EST
Subject:      Well baby check

How often should my "baby" get a check-up? I bought my 1260 from a store
that was going out of business and they didn't mention any need for
anything other than regular cleaning and oiling. The thought of being
without my link to sanity while it's in the shop is truly horrifying!

Date: Thu,  9 Feb 95 10:36:00 UTC
Subject: Bernina Digest 2/7/95
My 1630 is home!! Early in fact.  It was supposed to be gone for 3 weeks, but
it came home in 2 1/2.  Didn't cost me a cent, and it is like a brand new
machine.  I played with it last night, stitch quality is much better, it seems
great so far!  Guess they gave it a good overhaul!
Date: Thu, 9 Feb 1995 17:11:01 -0500
Subject: Re: Stitch Length


Regarding paper piecing stitch length on the Bernina;

The type of paper makes a difference, the needle size makes a difference so
it's hard to say exactly what stitch length to use.

I don't get too picky on the stitch length, I usually practice on a scrap of
the paper with the fabric I'm going to use.  When the paper tears away easily
and isn't shredded and falling off the fabric - then I've got about the
correct stitches per inch.  On typing paper I need a shorter stitch (more
holes to the inch) and on Lynn Graves (the little foot lady) paper piecing, I
can get away with a longer stitch (less holes).

I hope this helps!  Happy stitching!  

It is in the teens here today and windy.  Where's that
groundhog?  And where is the sun?

Date: Fri, 10 Feb 1995 21:19:32 -0500
Subject: machine applique


What stitch do you set your machine on (1630) for machine applique?  I don't
want to see the stitch so I'll be using the mono. on top.

Thanks in advance!  Jennifer
Date: Fri, 10 Feb 1995 23:33:03 -0500
Subject: Re: Satin Stitch

Make sure you thread your bobbin thread thru that additional eye.  This will
help you greatly.  Are you using a stitch and tear for support or even just
classy tissue paper?
Subject: Re: Machine
Date: Sat, 11 Feb 1995 13:34:04 +0800 (WST)
Re Machine applique
I use the Blind Hem stitch A3 and reverse it with a stitch length and width of
1.  I took Harriet Hargreaves class about a week after I got my 1630 and
learned an incredible amount from her not just about applique but a lot about
needles and threads etc.  She recommends wonder thread on top and a 60 wieght
on the bottom (heirloom sewing thread).  It required a bit of fiddleing with
tension as the threads aren't the same, but its worth it.
Kay L
Date: Sat, 11 Feb 95 11:36:00 UTC
Subject: Bernina Digest 2/10/95
Hi Jennifer, I set my 1630 at Stitch width of in between 1 and 3 depending on
the piece, and stitch length, just a little bit above the picture of satin
stitching on the screen.  Play with it and see how it goes.  It does do a great
I can't get over how much better this machine is since it's upgrade.  I am
going to write to Bernina and thank them,  it is so much better.
Subject: 1260
Date: Sat, 11 Feb 1995 05:44:13 -0500

Does anyone know of any books on the Bernina model 1260? My dealer say
there are none and the only way to learn about it's features is to take

Sallie L
Date: Sat, 11 Feb 1995 07:35:11 -0500
Subject: Re: Bernina Digest 2/9/95

Re:  Paper piecing.  We have found that any sharp sewing machine needle (not
a ballpoint, in other words) does a good job; the thinner ones seem to be a
bit better than the thicker ones.  HOWEVER, I agree that stitch length is the
issue, and that almost any needle will work if you adjust your stitch length
accordingly.  Make a test as described by Debby. I often photocopy my own
designs and paper piece using photocopier paper.  Doesn't seem to harm my
Bernina, it tears away just fine (when stitch length is appropriate).  In
short, I go with whatever needle happens to be in the machine.  One tip:  I
sometimes find it easier to tear paper away if I dampen it just before I'm
ready to remove it and then let the piece sit for a moment or two.  Addy
Date: Sat, 11 Feb 1995 11:07:17 -0500
Subject: Re: New Machine

Cheryl,   and  Hi to all.  I tried to send this just to Cheryl because it is
so long, but it came back undeliverable,  Maybe you will find some new kernal
that makes it worth you time.  Thanks.
I consider the Bernina 1260 the best mch on the market for qltrs.  For
several reasons:; This model has the one touch control for the stitch
choices, with automatic memory for the last TWO altered stitches.--That means
you can set a stitch for just the right l/w/+++ for what you want, pick a
second stitch( I frequently set one for a tie-off stitch) set as you want it,
then sew  either or some other, but the mch. remembers the two altered
choices and they are available at the touch of a button!  The newer computer
mchs. with the displays that you have to scroll through do not do this--you
have to work thru the stuff to reset.  
2nd , equally desirable feature is the knee lever to raise and lower the
presser foot--that gives you the = of a third hand, since you do not have to
shift handling of either hand to be ready to sew.  AND...every time you use
the knee lever the feed dogs drop to give you smooth clearance under the
presser foot; if you press the lever a little more to the right the foot
rises up apx 1/8" more to give you almost 1/2" SMOOTH clearance that will not
snag on any batting or any other rough texture.  This knee lift lever is
exclusive to Bernina and put on  only the upper model choices-- you can tell
in photos of the mchs. by the little black hole that shows up on the lower
right on the base of the mch.
The Bernina bobbin  is bigger than most others, holding 80 yds. of thread;
and their bbn winder is easier to use that most.
Berninas are made in Switzerland, meeting the fine, proud reputation there of
making quality precision mechanical products.  They are usually a little
behind in offering the new features that other machines introduce, because
they do very thorough recearch and development to bring the customer the
finest product available, and to be sure it will meet B's high standards.
If I sound a little biased, I am, but it comes from much experience:  Back in
the fiftys my dad brought home an old German Adler mch.  My first experience
with a modern mch with zz and fancy stitches.  My mother never had a chance
to use it--I was always on it, and she encouraged me; I became a HEAVY sewer,
at 14 sewing everything in many categories.  I took that mch. with me when I
married, and wore it out!  Finally bought a Viking in 1975, which I loved and
used well.  In 1978 I opened a fabric store, a Stretch &Sew, where my
education in sewing and machines continued rapidly.  First we became Elna
dealers.  They are also made in Swtz. , but are not as easy to use as
Berninas, I learned later: I just knew they were hard to sell, and tricky to
sew with in class demos without hitches and kinks.  Then we took a sub-dlrshp
with the Viking local dealer; that was better-they were easier to sell and
use in front of people.  10 yrs later we became Viking dealers and discovered
that although they are made well in Sweden to high standards, they do not
hold up well over a long time--the needle bar especially begins to vary with
wear and we saw lots of mchs. with needle -pock marks all around the hole in
the needle plate where that wobble caused the neede to hit.  Its hard to
sell something you know is lesser thananother product you also have (the
Berninas).So we sighed relief when we finally sold out the Vikings.
In about 1986 we became Bernina dealers and learned a lot more, and enjoyed
selling these fine machines.  In 1990 we earned a trip to Switzerland with
our sales numbers; that was a wonderful trip--will be a highlight of my life.
But in 1991 we decided to retire, could not find a buyer for our store, which
by then was not a S&S, but just a fine fabric store.  We faced a critical
lease decision and burnout; so we closed it at end of March.  No
regrets--we're doing fine, but I do miss working with and selling Berninas.
Still no new dealer here in Odessa, TX(I didn't say where we are).But I do
the fun stuff, like teach maching quiltmaking at a couple of local shops.
I purchased a Pfaff 1475 in 1992 with the computer interface programs, etc.
I enjoy it also. especially the built-in walking foot ant the always handy
needle threader.
It quilts very well, too, with stable tensions.  My Bernina is the 1230,
which is just like the new 1260, but with only one alphabet.  I enjoy having
both--and frequently use both mchs. on a project.  But if I had to have only
one, I would choose the Bernina, for the reasons above.
If you could find a 1230 new or used, it would be a better buy, probably for
your quilting and other sewing projects.  If you want all the stitches and
possibilities, then be sure to consider the newest top-of-line B.  I'll
probably have one someday, but for now the 1230-1260 is best choice.
Wow!  This turned itno a dissertation.  Hope it helps.
Sincerely, Ida T
Date: Mon, 13 Feb 1995 16:24:00 
Subject: bernina factory

Within the last two weeks or so someone posted news regarding a Bernina
factory tour she made when she was a Bernina dealer. Well, I unexpectedly
have the opportunity to go to Switzerland next month and am curious as to
whether or not there is a standard tour or was this just arranged for
dealers? I called the Swiss Tourist Office in NY and they couldn't find
Steckborn or the Bernina factory on their data sheets (this doesn't auger
well) but did give me Bernina's phone number. Thought I'd try the net
first. Thanks for any information and I sure wish I hadn't deleted the
posting so I could address this to you, o mystery woman of unknown name,
Julia S
Subject: hints: satin stitch
Date: Mon, 13 Feb 95 16:40:29 EST

Here is some suggestions, and some have already been suggested on satin

1.	practice, practice, practice!
2.	use #20 foot (open toe, the stitches flow underneath it much easier!)
3.	use a tear-away stabilizer. This stuff is easily obtained, and
	best news is that it runs about 1.50/yd; comes in 30" wide.
4.	use embroidery thread in the bobbin case
5.	thread the "eye" of the bobbin case
6.	don't lock your stitches when you first begin by sewing in place:
	in order to lock the stitches, pull the bobbin thread up to the top,
	 then hang on to both of the "tails" and holding them toward you, 
	sew your satin stitches over the two strands of thread for 5-6 stitches.
	This locks the thread, and you can then cut off any remaining tails.
7.	to end, again, do not lock stitch by stitching in place. Leave a
	long tail, and weave those tails in with a hand needle. This extra
	effort is well worth it for the finished project!
8.	practice is also going to give you less aggravation.....cut out
	some letters, like a "V" and "T" about 3" in length, and practice
	 doing points, curves, etc.
9.	Good luck and take your time!
10.	Threads that work best are sulky and rayon. Metallic thread takes
	larger eye needle, and sometimes the machine speed needs to be
	slowed down just to adjust for the thickness of the metallics.
11.	use the Schmetz needles that are new to the market just for
embroidery. They work very well, in most cases!

Have fun, and hope this has been helpful.
Theresa G
Date: Wed, 15 Feb 95 21:40:18 -0800
Subject: My new toy

I can finally stop lurking and participate, because my Bernina 1230
arrived in the mail today.  It's not new (in fact, they're not making
1230's any more) but it's new to me, and at $1200, it was what I could
afford. Now I have a zillion questions.

First, feet.  Of course I have 0-9, but what other feet should I get?
What are your favorite feet?  I sew T-shirts and pants for my son
(he's four), shirts and pants for myself (I wear a dress maybe once a
year, no sense sewing them), polarfleece stuff for the whole family,
bicycle clothes and swimsuits for me and my son, quilts (but nothing
fancy), and I'm just starting to sew a futon cover for the living room
couch, pillows, and some new curtains.  I'm definitely planning on
getting #37 for piecing, a walking foot for machine quilting, and a 4
mm roll hemmer for dress shirt hems.  Are there any other obvious feet
that I should have?

Did I pay too much for my machine?  It's in very good condition, but I
think it's probably pretty old.  How long have they been making 1230's
anyway?  How long do they last?

What's the recipe for the hand-quilting-looking stitch?  I promised my
mil (who just got a 1530 used) that I'd find out for her.

Bye, back to sewing!

-- Anne P
Date:         Thu, 16 Feb 95 07:57:00 EST
Subject:      Satin stitch thanks

I want to thank everyone who gave me tips on using satin stitch for
applique. I had a successful session last night, mostly thanks to using
the typing paper on the bottom. (I haven't had a chance to invest in
special presser feet, threads, or stabilizers, but I'll probably give
that a try soon.) Your hints made the sewing fun and rewarding, instead
of the frustrating chore it had been when I posted my question. And I
even have a completed block that I won't be embarrassed to claim as one
I made! Thanks for sharing your wisdom.

Marty in A
Date: Fri, 17 Feb 95 02:46:00 UTC
Subject: My New Toy

Anne, you are certain to get lots of replies to this question!
One of my favorite feet is the #10. Forget the name of it! It enables you
follow along an edge and sew very close to it. Also to butt two pieces of
lace together and zig-zag them together ( I do a lot of heirloom sewing)
 If you are doing any sewing with cording (pillows for the living room? the
futon cover?) you will want a foot for that.
Subject: Re: Bernina DIgest 2/11/95
Date: Wed, 15 Feb 1995 09:25:47 -0500

> Does anyone know of any books on the Bernina model 1260? My dealer say
> there are none and the only way to learn about it's features is to take
> classes...
> --
> Sallie L

Dear Sallie,

I think the classes if you can do them are very helpful. But if not there 
is an instruction book for Bernina's, I'm not sure of the title, so I'll 
ask at the expo this weekend. Anyway it comes in a typewriter binder cover 
and costs approximately 25.00??? I'm real uncertain about that cost, I'll 
ask that too. I have seen this book and my understanding is that it comes 
out with a new set of brochures you can get every year, for ideas to use 
your machine. I'll let you know early next week.

Date: Thu, 16 Feb 95 20:29:35 -0800
Subject: #5 vs. #10 foot

Two people so far have mentioned the #10 (edgestitching) foot.  I went
to the store today, and the #10 looks almost identical to the #5
(blind hem) foot that has been recommended for edgestitching (and
which I already have, of course).  Is the #10 really better?  

-- Anne
Date: Thu, 16 Feb 95 20:33:28 -0800
Subject: Tension

Alas, the tension on my new (used) 1230 seems a little off.  I'm using
the standard tension setting (5), a small (70/10) needle, and
quilting fabric, and I frequently can see the upper thread on the
bottom.  This is really annoying-  I didn't expect a Bernina, of all
things, to have trouble with tension, and I want the top and bottom
threads to meet right in the middle where they are supposed to.  Is
this the kind of thing that a tuneup can fix?  I visited my dealer
(who did not sell me the machine) and he recommended a tuneup on
general principles, and said I should have the machine tuned up every

-- Anne
Date: Fri, 17 Feb 1995 06:30:36 MST
Subject: Tension/#10 foot

I don't know about the 1230 but on my machine (1031) normal tension is
set at 0 not 5.  Regarding the #10 foot, I used my #5 for awhile but the
#10 allows your needle to sew in the centre position...if you do this
with the number 5, you'll break needles because of the little 'tongue'.
It also allows you to sew farther away from your seam if you are top
stitching.  The #10 allows greater flexibility.  

Sandra M

Date: Fri, 17 Feb 1995 07:12:03 MST
Subject: Tension

Boy do I feel stupid......just went downstairs and had alook at my 
machine....I leave my tension mostly on the red mark which I assumed
was 0.....guess what, it is 5 just doesn't have a number there  but
there is a 4 on one side of the mark and a 6 on the other so my
brilliant mind deduces that this must be sorry Anne...what
can I say....just one of those days.  

Sandra M
Date: Fri, 17 Feb 1995 14:19:17 -0500
Subject: Re: Bernina feet, etc.

In answer to the questions about the 1230 and what feet to get:

I would skip the 4 mm hemming foot. It does not make a rolled hem, merely a
narrow hem.  I have never been able to make one of these work on ANY machine,
including a Bernina. The beginning is very awkward and usually has to be
re-done some other way, and it's often hard to keep the fabric going through
the foot in the proper manner. If you really think you need this, take the
type of fabric you intend to use to the fabric store and ask them to let you
use the foot on a machine in the store. It does not have to be a 1230; all
the Berninas will react the same with the foot.  From the type of thing you
make, you sound like you also need a serger. If you already have one, use the
rolled hem on that. Most sergers make wonderful rolled hems, and I use them
for lots of things. 

Now back to Berninas:  I had an 830, then a Pfaff 1473, and now a Bernina
1530. I will still keep the Pfaff because of the even-feed foot for
straight-line quilting, but prefer sewing on the Bernina(s). They will last a
lifetime if properly cared for; I am saving the 830 for my granddaughter (who
is 7 months old). I do not think you paid too much for it. A friend of mine
sold an 1130 recently for that amount when she got a 1530. My favorite feet
are the #37 which you are getting anyway; the #16 gathering foot, but if you
don't make a lot of girl-type clothes with ruffles, you might not need it;
the #32 pintuck foot (wonderful for embellishment);and  the #20 open
embroidery foot, to me essential for machine applique because I can't SEE
what I'm doing with the closed embroidery foot. The other thing I think is
essential is the straight stitch throat plate, which will keep your machine
(or any other) from sucking those little pieces down inside. Just be sure to
change back to the regular one when you do anything but straight stitch, or
you will break needles. The feet now on my wish list are: #24 freehand
embroidery foot, like the darning foot, only cut open in front. I think I
will like this better than the big darning foot #29 which Bernina calls the
quilting foot. I have the #29 and it's OK but think I would like the #24
better. I also want the #12, bulky overlock foot. Hope this helps you decide.

Mary M
Date: Fri, 17 Feb 95 11:56:32 -0800
Subject: Bernina feet, etc.

Mary M suggests that the 4 mm hemming foot is not worthwhile,
and says she's not been able to make a hemmer work on any machine.  I
must admit I've had mixed luck with hemmers;  I guess I hoped I'd have
better luck with my 'Nina.  I will take Mary's suggestion and try a
hemmer in the store first.  Mary also suggests substituting a serger
rolled hem.  I have a serger, and I use it all the time (and I think
that anyone who sews children's clothes or activewear should buy the
serger BEFORE buying the expensive sewing machine), but I don't think
it would be appropriate for garments.  I just can't see putting a
serger rolled hem on a man's dress shirt;  I think it would look
cheesy.  In fact, so far the only uses I've found for a serger rolled
hem are for napkins and for kid's dress-up.

Has anyone else tried the 4 mm hemmer or any other size hemmer?  The
fabrics I have in mind are crisp cottons, for example a nice pima
broadcloth.  David Page Coffin, the shirtmaker, swears by hemmers in
his book, but I took a shirtmaking class from another shirtmaker and
she recommended just pressing the hem up twice and topstitching.  

-- Anne
Date: Fri, 17 Feb 1995 17:06:55 -0500
Subject: Re: My New Toy

The # 10 foot looks like the #5 but if you look underneath you will see that
the blind hem black bar moves and the #10 bar does not . If you use the blind
hem foot to edge with alot, it will brake down. The # 10 was developed to
ride firmly along the edge.Pat
Date: Fri, 17 Feb 1995 17:07:29 -0500
Subject: Re:Walking foot

I am the happy owner of an old 801. It is a real workhorse and I will never
give it up but I would like to upgrade in the fall. I have always assumed
that I would get a 1230 but now it is a 1260 and while I hear good things
about it I'm not sure I want to spend that much.
This will be the telling test. My only complaint about my Bernina is the
walking foot. It is a bear to get it on and off and to frustrate me even more
it has a tendency to hang up at seams in my quilts. I like to put my borders
on with it and it hangs up at almost every pieced seam. It also gets stuck
when quilting and going through points. I followed Harriet Hargraves advice
about trimming it but the problem persists.
My question: will I get the same results with a new Bernina and attached
walking foot or should I consider the Pfaff (gasp!) for its built-in walking
stitch? I know that some of you have both so I would love your feed back.
Email me privately unless you think all would benefit - they probably will
Thanks, Kathy
Date: Fri, 17 Feb 1995 17:17:52 MST
Subject: RE: Bernina Feet, Etc.

Re hemmer feet.  I have one for a rolled hem and agree with Mary that
it is sometimes difficult to get started but if I hold my mouth the
right way, I can make it work and it does do a good job. For anyone
who doesn't have the #12, if you love piping get it.  I probably use
this foot more than any other not only or making piping but for
couching braids, yarns etc.  Also saw on Shirley Adams that you can
use your blind hemmer foot for fagotting...i tried it and it really
Date: Fri, 17 Feb 1995 17:32:15 -0800
Subject: Re: Bernina Feet, Etc.

I have had very good results from my 003 rolled hem foot (don't know if that
is the 4mm or not). I bought it when I was mass-producing cotton nightshirts
to sell--woven cotton slightly heavier than most shirtings.  I think the
secret to "starting" the hem is to finger-press several inches of the hem,
both turns, before you start to feed it through the foot, then sew slowly
enough that you carefully control the amount of fabric being folded into the
foot--I get into trouble when I begin to veer off to one side or the other!
Makes beautiful shirt hems.

My newest, "wonder-how-I-ever-got-along-without-it" foot is the #37, quarter
inch or "patchwork" foot.  I'm a quilter and had learned to eyeball a good
quarter inch seam, but this foot is really slick--not only gives you a
perfect quarter inch edge to sew by, but has  marks that show you where to
stop or turn a quarter inch from the seam or edge you are sewing toward.  It
also has an eighth inch marking notch for miniatures or top-stitching.  It
has definitely improved my piecing accuracy.
And sew it goes...
(apologies to Linda Ellerbee)
Date: Fri, 17 Feb 1995 16:44:35 -0800
Subject: Re: My New Toy , Rolled Hem and other favorites

My 1090 and I used to make ballgowns for competitive ballroom dancing 
(now we do sensible things like quilting and golf clothes). These 
dresses used about 40 yards of organza and chiffon in the skirts..all 
the hems were done with the 61 foot incorporating 40 pound fishing line 
into the roll and using monofilament nylon top and bottom. I am 
convinced -ONLY on a Bernina.  It takes a little practice to learn how 
to start the fabric into the foot but it works beautifully.  This makes 
a very narrow hem.  Love the walking foot but wish I had the new one 
with the guide.  The #10 Edge Stitch foot is great (why didn't I get it 
sooner??) and I also use the Bulky Overlock #12 a lot.  It's great for 
attaching ribbing, etc.  If you want to make wider rolled hems, you 
might want to look at the 64 or 66.  I've found that the zig-zag ones 
are a little more versatile (61,63,66).  Happy sewing.
Date: Fri, 17 Feb 95 18:50:19 -0800
Subject: Walking Foot

Kathy mentions that she was planning to get a 1230, but now must get a
1260.  Not necessarily.  They are no longer making 1230's, but there
are some still left in stores;  I know the Quilting Bee in Mountain
View has two.  Also, they are sometimes available used;  the Quilting
Bee is also selling off some demo machines soon, and I'm sure demos
are available elsewhere as well.

I don't know anything about the walking foot and the 1230, but those
who do, please post;  I'm thinking about buying one too.

-- Anne
Subject: Re: Bernina Digest 2/16/95
Date: Fri, 17 Feb 1995 20:19:00 -0500

Dear Anne and other Bernina owners,

Congratulations Anne! It's so exciting to get something new! One of my 
favorite feet is the # 20. You can do a lot of different things with it, 
but for the life of me I can't think of a one this moment! Have fun and 

Date: Sat, 18 Feb 1995 07:44:22 -0500
Subject: Bernina  Add-ons

Lucky you to get the 1230.  Price was good.  They have only been made since
1989,  Couldn't be older than 5, and they came with 20 yr warranty on
mechanical parts. 5 rs. on computer bd, 2 yr on electrical system.-- for
original owner who sent in regis. cd, and had a local dealer to uphold the
warranty.  All Bs wear well and last a long time--main thing is to keep it
FEET  --  No 10 is my first choice for adding.  It is different from the
#5--the center guide only goes back to the opening in the foot, so it guides
you to stay in a crease or up to an edge better than any other way I've ever
seen.  The clear opening allows you to move the needle position and/or use
any stitch choice.
The #5 blind stitch foot's center guide is longer and higher and extends back
past the needle position, so that you will make the jump stitch with extra
"slack" in the thread and your hem will not pull or "dimple" the right side
of the hem.  The guide is bent around the center needle position, but you
must still be careful or you may break a needle by hitting it.  The #5  foot
and Bernina's variable control give you wonderful blind hems-- I use them on
almost all hems, even pants and t-shirts.  
Use the #10 with clear nylon thread and blind stitch #7 set to your choice to
get truly invisible "hand look"  applique.
Use the #20 -open toe embroidery- for applique with satin or other stitches
Use tne open-toe darning foot, or the new big open quilters foot for
free-form quilting.
You mentioned #37, the patchwork foot.  Wonderful.
Use #12 for piping and cords and beads.

Those are the ones I use most.  I'll talk more about  them or others next
time.  Enjoy!

PS--Ask your dealer about the "Footnotes" leaflets that explain each foot.
 Minimal cost--big help.
Date: Sat, 18 Feb 95 13:16:00 UTC
Subject: Bernina Feet, Etc.

 I must say that I have never had any luck with the
rolled hem foot (I think mine is 6 mm, but not sure without
looking in the drawer downstairs). I just put it down to
my inept fingers and lack of glad to hear
it's maybe not entirely my fault. 
Have never liked the binding foot, either.
My experience with the walking foot (which i use a _lot_ since I
am a quilter and do it all by machine) is a bit different -- Hargraves
suggests filing out the front of the foot chiefly for visibility, I
thought, rather than getting over bumps. I have observed that my
walking foot catches behind on the seams -- the clearance underneath
the machinery box behind the foot itself is too low. Don't know it
that can be changed by Bernina's design or not. I try to watch for
the seams coming up and give a little extra guiding pressure to get
the foot past without hanging up.
Date: Sat, 18 Feb 1995 14:20:22 -0500
Subject: #12 foot

I have the NEW #12 foot, not to be confused with the old foot, because it is
wider for the 1630. It also has a hole you can feed cord into, so if you have
the NEW #12 you can skip the #21. I understand this foot will also work on
the machines that aren't the 1630.

About rolled hems... Betty Nall has a book on heirloom sewing on the 1630 and
a few other good Bernina books. I was paging through her book and noticed
that the #3 buttonhole foot can be used to do a roll hem. You have to play a
little, but you feet the fabric just to the left of center, and zig zag.
There is a slot under the foot that lets the fabric roll. I did this last
night when I had to make my daughter Samantha an outfit for her Samantha
doll. I roll hemmed the sleeves, I didn't feel like threading the serger just
for two feet of hem.

Also, I used the blind hem foot for edgeing, when making Samantha a vest to
match Samantha the dolls outfit. The regular foot would have been nice. I am
adding it to my list of preferred feet, in fact this may be the one I add
next. I plan on buying one foot a month.

Also, I would like to recommend Jackie Dodson's book, Know Your Bernina. I
have Know Your Pfaff, and I looked through the Bernina one, she discusses
feet. BUt be warned, the book came out with the 1130 so some feet info are
out of date.

Date: Sat, 18 Feb 95 15:20:56 
Subject: #5 VS #10 FOOT

I have both feet.  The difference is only visable from the bottom.  On #5 the
metal bar is longer.  I have used either for topstitching, but only #5 for

Diane H
Date: Sat, 18 Feb 1995 17:39:59 -0500 (EST)
Subject: Re: Bernina Add Ons

I have a 37, the patchwork foot, and I use it all the time.  However, I 
went to a quilting retreat in the fall without my machine (I know, I 
know, but I was depressed) and ended up borrowing one from a friend who 
has the same model.  I asked her if she had the 37, and when she said no, 
I wanted to know how she managed to get her seams 1/4 in wide.  Come to 
find out, her throat plate has a 1/4 in mark on it.  I swore mine didn't 
have it, but when I went home there it was.  All those months sewing with 
my 1530, and I'd never noticed the mark.  Oh, well, life is full of 

Subject: Inspiration
Date: Sat, 18 Feb 1995 18:53:03 -0500 (EST)

I just returned from our State
Guild's annual meeting held in Charleston, SC.  The guest speaker was
Libby Lehman from Houston.  She had several quilts and display and gave
an excellent talk/slide show.  Her quilts are what I would consider
contemporary art quilts (which I happen to love) and they were heavyly
embellished with fancy machine stiching.  Libby mentioned that she uses
a Bernina 1630 and she said that she wouldn't be at the level she is
without her machine.  I can't begine to describe her work but I was
really impressed.  One of the quilts she had there today has been
submitted for consideration for Paducah but she doesn't know yet if its
been accepted.

I wonder if my humble 1000 will ever make a quilt like one of hers!

Corky L
Date: Sat, 18 Feb 95 20:10:33 -0500
Subject: Archives now available

Just a quick note to let everyone know that the archives are ow available for 
the Bernina Fan Club for the months of December and January.  Please e-mail me 
if you'd like a copy.
Sue T
Date: Sat, 18 Feb 1995 23:13:05 -0500
Subject: Re: Bernina Feet

I love the #10 foot. Use it almost as much as the #5(we are a short family
and everything must be hemmed). I used the #5 instead of the #10 for awhile
but boy it was great to edge stitch with a #10. There is no comparison IMHO.
I have both the Hemmers that David Page Coffin recommends. I tried the hem
slowly and methodically starting just as he describes and it worked
beautifully on both my 930 and my 1530.
    Barbara A
Date: Thu, 16 Feb 1995 14:18:37 -0500
Subject: Thanks

I just want to say thank you to everyone for their help and suggestions for
paper piecing.  I will be doing some this week or over the weekend.

I must say I do not know I how sewed before my Bernina.  When I was class
this past weekend at the dealer's shop, her husband (he is the repair person)
took a look at my machine just to make sure that I am keeping it clean and
was surprised to learn that I am cleaning and oiling it about every 3 days.
  But then I told him that I am averaging 3 to 4 hours of sewing a night.  I
know that I never spend that much time at the machine before.  I spent my
time doing needlepoint and other forms of needlework rather than fuss with my
old Singer.

Maria V.
Date: Sun, 19 Feb 95 21:43:50 PST

Hi Barbara;

You wrote;
      "I have both the Hemmers that David Page Coffin recommends."

Are these Bernina hemmers?  Who is he?  

I had so many messages after my server was down for a week I had 
to delete a lot of them to catch up and missed this conversation.

I had a 930 and now have a 1530, but have never used hemmer feet
since '82 when I got my 930, after having a problem with these  
feet on former machines.

Thanks for any input.  :0}

Jean P
Subject: Dvid Page Coffin??
Date: Mon, 20 Feb 1995 22:36:51 +0800 (WST)    

I must confess my ignorance, but who is David Page Coffin?  I gather from the
context of the message that he writes about sewing?  Are his books/articles

Also, what is the Betty Nall book on heirloom sewing for the 1630 called?  I
haven't seen it here in Perth, Western Australia.

Date: Tue, 21 Feb 1995 08:15:37 -0500 (EST)
Subject: Re: Tension


   You should not have the upper tension set on "5".  The two red lines
should be lined up and rarely do you change it except for thick quilting.
Good luck!
        Jacque F
Date: Tue, 21 Feb 1995 08:47:55 -0500
Subject: Re: Bernina Digest 2/20/95

About Hemmers:

>      "I have both the Hemmers that David Page Coffin recommends."
>Are these Bernina hemmers?  Who is he?  
Bernina has a series of hemmers:

Straight stitch (centered) only:  2mm and 4mm
Wide stitch (zzag or embroidery):  3mm, 6mm
Scalloped edge hemmer: 4mm (has clearance for a scalloped edge)

Noet: the 3mm is designed to facilitate hemming around curves (don't try
hemming curves on heavier fabrics with a wide hemmer, it will just bunch up)

I have the 6mm zzag (for med-heavyweight fabrics) and 3mm (for fine-med
weight fabrics). I find that they work well if I slow slowly (difficult for
me at times ...) and if I keep guiding the fabric to teh feet evenly.

>I must confess my ignorance, but who is David Page Coffin?  I gather from the
>context of the message that he writes about sewing?  Are his books/articles

David Coffin is an editor at Threads magazine.  He is self taught sewer and
has polished his shirt making skills over the years.  I ordered his book
about shirt making and while I found a fair amount of valuable information,
I would take exception with a few 'yuppy' trends:  expanses of color/glossy
pictures of fabric, his proselytizing about what is a true  'dress shirt'
(not my style: I don't "live" on Wall Street, I don't dress for Wall
street), and while I agree with him that all you actually NEED for shirt
making is a good straight-stitch/zzag machine, I'm not about to walk out on
my 1090 :)

(BTW, I have a personal gripe about the sewing/publishing industry where too
much energy is spent on 'gloss' rather than substance.  I believe sewing
books should not be as expensive as they are.  I'd rather have them printed
on plain paper and be more affordable.  My focus is on the information
first, marketing second.  A good content will sell a book)

Date: 21 Feb 1995 09:16:35 U
Subject: Which Foot To Use?


I plan on sewing curtains and making bedspreads with my Bernina 1000.  I would
like to make my bedspread out of tapestry fabric, with maybe a lightweight
lining, and sew decorative braiding around the perimeter.  Since I am an
unexperienced sewer, can anyone recommend which foot to use on my machine to
sew the bedspread?  I currently own the feet supplied with the machine; I'm
pretty sure the standard foot will do, although I can't remember the number.

Thank you.
Mary Ann
Date: Tue, 21 Feb 1995 09:36:51 -0500
Subject: David Page Coffin

I have had a number of e-mail queries re:who this man is and what does he do.
He makes wonderful shirts. I am sure he makes other garments but his book and
video on "Shirtmaking" is what I am most familiar with.
Coffin is an associate editor for "Threads" which produced both the book and
Relative to the Bernina- Coffin shows how to use both the rolled hemmer feet
(I have # 61 and 64) and the flat fell feet (mine are #70 and 71). I have
been to many Bernina clubs and have never had an explanation that allowed me
to properly use these feet. Following Coffin's methods I can now use them.
If anyone is interested in trying his video Nancy's Notions Video Club rents
it. (1-800-833-0690 it is #VC-240).
By the way the man is not quite a perfect sewer-he uses a Pfaff not a
Bernina. This post is long but I hope it is helpful.
                                 Barbara A
Date: Tue, 21 Feb 1995 10:07:36 -0500
Subject: An introduction

Greetings all!

Boy, was I glad to 'stumble' across this Bernina Fan Club (on W3)!!!

My name is Sylvain Bergeron.  I started sewing on my own about 10 years ago
(after having seen my mother sew throughout my growing up years, and I've
been going at it more steadily in the last 6 years.  I guess I've reached
the 'intermediate' level (a very stretchy concept).  My main focus is men's
shirts (for me) and pants, dresses and shirts for my wife Linda, and sewing
utilitarian projects like heavy canvas totes, wood carriers and anything
else Linda comes to me for, saying "You can make that, can you? (usually
with a grin on her face).  I am now branching out to baby clothes as we are
now the happy parents of a little chipmunk (Daniel) who is just 3 1/2 months

I sew on Bernina machines: Nina (my 1090) and Nette (my 334DS).  I've
'stolen' a corner of the living room , bought a computer desk and I now have
my little corner in sewing heaven!

While I enjoy sewing (and yes... fabric too), I want to develop
instructional material in the long run, like a comprehensive review of
presser feet and how they work, not just how to use them.

My main job is as computer course instructor at Cornell Information
Technologies (Cornell U.).  So training is my first calling (then sewing
must be my 'screaming' :)

BTW:  I have a question:   can anyone tell me whether the 1530 is worth the
price tag?  I really like my 1090 (it has all the utility features I need
for garment construction and 'roughneck' sewing) but it has only ONE style
of buttonhole.  I plan on sticking with an oscillating hook (better stitch
quality).  Seems to me that the 1260 is 'stranded' in the middle: not that
much more than the 1090 for the price, and 'outfeatured' by the 1530.  The
question is (for 1530 owners): do you use all the stitches (especially

Happy sewing all!

Date: Tue, 21 Feb 1995 20:19:54 -0500
Subject: Re: Tension

I am sorry but that information is completely wrong. Tension depends on the
type and thickness of the thread you are using. The information you gave is
old news........
Date: Tue, 21 Feb 95 21:47:27 -0800
Subject:  Top ten feet

I asked about favorite feet for your Bernina.  The most commonly
recommended by you guys were also the ones recommended by my shop this
weekend when I went in for the 25% off sale.

#10 edgestitching foot was the favorite-  almost everyone recommended
it, and the consensus is that it's better than the #5 for
edgestitching.  I bought it, and I agree.

#20 open toe applique.  I bought this one too, haven't used it yet

#12-  it has some strange name, I think tricot foot, but in fact is
used for piping.  Very enthusiastic recommendation from several.

#37 patchwork foot-  a terrific foot for sewing exactly 1/4 seams.  I
bought this one too, and it's gotten lots of use.

#63 (?) 3 mm zigzag hemmer-  recommended as better for shirttail hems;
the other hemmers are harder to use on curves.  Several people
reported that they've not been able to get any hemmer to work.

#17 gathering foot-  I tried this foot out, and was amazed.  It's
really great.  You set the stitch length long and the tension high,
and voila!  the machine gathers.  Also the gathers are somewhat
adjustable after you sew.  I didn't buy this one, because the #16 does
the same thing, but for heavier fabric, and I thought it likely that
I'd want to gather home-dec fabric, and unlikely that I'd want to
gather (or even sew) batiste.  The store was out of #16s, and had
plenty of #17s, so I guess others share my preference

#?? the big darning foot-  this is for free-motion machine quilting.
If you machine quilt, you need this foot.  In fact, I heard that there
are two, one for high-loft and one for low-loft battings.

walking foot-  there were some complaints, but some people (probably
quilters again) said that it was a requirement.  I quilt, so I ordered

pintucking foot- someone recommended getting one of the pintucking
feet.  If you get one, my store says the 7-tuck one is the most

-- Anne
Date: Wed, 22 Feb 1995 14:16:06 -0500
Subject: Re: Top Ten Feet

The # 29 ft.(big darning ) was designed with a higher clearance , to be used
with batting. If you use this foot and get skiped stitches then you need to
change to the #9 or #24 foot. The # 29 foot is also great for beading by
machine. Pat
Date: 20 Feb 1995 14:46:17 -0500
Subject: RE: Walking Foot

Kathy, I tried sending you a reply message one time but evidently you didn't
get it.  I hope this comes to you.
I have a 1031 and a walking foot.  I have had no problems with the walking
foot and it is easy to attach and detach.  You are welcome to come over to my
house with a wad of quilt sandwiches and give it a try sometime after a Quilt
Guild meeting.  I live in Ann Arbor.  See you in March.

Date: Wed, 22 Feb 1995 18:25:41 MST
Subject: Walking Foot

One suggestion made by my dealer when I purchased the walking foot
for my 1031 was to take it upstairs to the scissor sharpening guy and
he would file down the back of the foot a bit.  I didn't but have not
been having any problems with the thing.  The first few times I tried
to put it on my machine resulted in some unseemly language but once
I got the hang of it everything was fine and it slips on and off now
as easily as my other feet.   Glad to see someone else has the 1031
I absolutely love it and around here at least, it is the used machine
most in demand. My dealer has alist of people who want it should I
ever decide to trade it in.
Date: Thu, 23 Feb 1995 08:11:43 -0500 (EST)
Subject: Re: Walking Foot

  You may be doing this already, but drop the feed dogs when you put on 
the walking foot.  It is much easier that way.
Date: Thu, 23 Feb 1995 11:44:28 -0500
Subject: Re: Bernina 1530 Worthiness

Thank you  so much for the 1530 info


I've been calling around (Bernina of America in IL, dealers around central
NY) and  here's my notes on upgrading my 1090: (to either a 1260 or 1530)

1. the 1530 has the edge if you do embroidery.  More stitches of course, and
more memories for more versatile combinations

2. the 1530 has more buttonholes/eyelets.  That's a big plus

Otherwise, the 'pratical' stitch selection is about even on both.  Also, the
'electronic' controls (needle up/down, double needle, etc) are about the same

3. the 1260 inherits its beauty-in-simplicity "direct" interface:  one
button-one stitch or function.  I like that a lot on my 1090, I'd have a
hard time giving it up (I'm not a big fan of the track ball).  This makes it
easier to engage any needed function in mid-seam if necessary (no need to
fumble with the ball)

The famed 1230 (and 1130 before it) are maybe the most beloved Berninas: you
can't find them used!  The 1260 is just a 1230 in slightly fancier shoes...

BTW:  A TIP for 1260 OWNERS:
One dealer told me right out that the new Script alphabet on the 1260 is a
bit too cramped.  The letters are too narrow and don't come out too nice.
He recommends elongating the letters slightly and then they come out better.

Since I personally don't do much 'machine embroidery' (i may try my hand at
cutwork on linens this year; you only need a good satin stitch for that), my
heart is leaning on the 1260 right now.

I'll keep  you posted if I take the plunge...

Date: Fri, 24 Feb 1995 10:58:41 -0500
Subject: Re: Bernina feet, etc.

With regard to doing rolled hems - I was never able to use the feet designed
for this, but in one of my Bernina club lessons on heirloom sewing, I learned
a great technique for making a rolled hem on fairly fine material. Use your
buttonhole foot, stitch width 3 to 4,stitch length 3/4 to 1 1/2,needle
position left or half left. What you do is line up the center toe on the foot
on the right edge of the fabric and with the above settings, the fabric rolls
over and a rolled edge is created. Hope this helps others who have had
trouble with these feet. Sue M.
Date: Fri, 24 Feb 1995 11:05:24 -0500
Subject: Upgrading is not cheap  :(

Greetings all!

Well, I called many a dealer to find out what an upgrade of my 1090 would
cost me.   And apparently it would cost...

First, I got everything from very friendly advice to the 'car dealer'
treatment. So, FYI...

Fashion Fabrics, Charleston, SC:  The guy was very friendly/helpfull.  He
even read me teh blue book value of my machine. Told me I should be able to
get 2X that if I sold it on my own.  Also told me that a dealer will never
give me what it's worth on the open market, because they have to make a
profit when reselling it. He told me that the best strategy is to sell the
machine on my own and buy the upgrade when I can get a good sale price on
it.  I think he's right!  (doesn't this sound just like car buying???)
Upgrading to a 1260 would cost aroung 1300$

Grandma's Thimble, Binghamton, NY:  The owner was very  straightforward.
She is a quilter (not a seamstress), so her take on machine features is a
bit different.  Her approach to trade-ins is to deduct what she gives you
for it from the suggested retail price.  so upgrading to 1260 means 1700$.
That machine can go down ot 2200$ on sale, so with an open market selling
price of around 1100$ for my 1090, her 'deal' is pricey.  Won't do.

Upstate Vacuum, Syracuse, NY:  the car dealer!  I could picture the plaid
suit on the phone!  I did't like his 'talk' at all.  Said he would call me
back in a few minutes and didn't.  He told me 'we discount our machines a
lot already, so we don't cut deal on trade-ins'.  I got a genuine YUCK
feeling about that place.  Too bad, it' s the closest to my home :(

Well, I can't afford the upgrade for the time being.  As it turns out, most
dealers I talked to had VERY good words for the 1090.   I do like it (I just
would like a few of the other machines features) a lot, so I guess I'll just
keep it (I did get that one on sale, for a rock bottom price).  Better save
my pesos and wait a few years until the embroidery capable machines have
reached maturity  (right now, you read forums and hear what I consider
horror stories -considering the price tag on the top machines- of embroidery
not quite coming out on complex designs and users having to monkey around to
get it to work).

So here ends my upgrade lust for now.  Anyone, please let me know if you
find a used 1230 in good condition for sale. Maybe...


Date: Fri, 24 Feb 1995 17:31:19 -0500
Subject: Re: walking foot

Someone showed me that it was far easier to put the walking foot on if you
slid it on sideways.  Turn the foot so that it faces the main part of the
machine (the motor) and then tip it toward you so you can see the hole in the
top.  Slide it under the presser foot, rotate it 90 degrees, adjust the lever
that goes on the screw and snap it in place.  Made a world of difference for
me.  I just hope this makes sense!

Date: Sat, 25 Feb 1995 10:58:56 -0500
Subject: Hello Bernina club!

Glad I found this!  I'm a new 1260 owner and am loving it so far.  I do
mainly quilting with the occasional clothes sewing episode.  It is such a
pleasure to have my quilt blocks come out to exactly the right size, no
problem going over seams etc etc.

The other thing I really notice over my old machine (a White 1099 gift which
after I got the 1260, my mother told me was one of those special sale,
school/industrial machines) is how *quiet* it is.  Such a pleasure during
those late night deadline sessions.

Just wanted to introduce myself and say hi.  I'm receiving this in digest
because my two other on-line groups [Interquilt and a Morris Dance Discussion
group] are generating A LOT of mail and I was afraid I couldn't keep up with
all the mail handling.

bye for now
Mary Beth G
Date: Sun, 26 Feb 95 17:21:00 UTC
Subject: walking foot
Sylvain, go for it.  what ever machine you get, you will love it.
I never heard of dropping the feed dogs with the walking foot?  Has anyone
Date: Mon, 27 Feb 1995 07:24:16 EST
Subject: RE: Upgrading is not cheap  : (

Greetings all!

Well, I called many a dealer to find out what an upgrade of my 1090 would
cost me.   And apparently it would cost...

So here ends my upgrade lust for now.  Anyone, please let me know if you
find a used 1230 in good condition for sale. Maybe...



So, How much do YOU want for your 1090? I want to upgrade my 1010 but
it looks like I've got to wait to win the lottery first. I'd like a 1230/60
but..............  My DH says you've got a machine that works, you don't 
need a new one.........

Date: Mon, 27 Feb 95 07:02:24 -0500
Subject: Big Foot for the 1630

Is there a Big Foot sold for the 1630?

Date: Mon, 27 Feb 1995 11:04:12 -0500
Subject: Re:  Bernina Digest 2/25/95

Hi Mary Beth!  We've lived in NC for almost 20 years, but hubby &I both
grew up, went to college, and spent all our lives in NYstate.  Can't wait
to see when where who about the NYQuilts! show.  Please let me know!
Thanks. :^)

Elaine J
Date: Tue, 28 Feb 1995 08:25:09 -0500
Subject: Re: walking foot


You're right about the feeddogs -- in order for the walking foot to work
effectively the feed dogs have to be raised.....

I'm wondering why you'd want to have them down.  I do machine quilting with
my darning foot or open toe embroidery foot with the feed dogs lowered......
Is that what someone's trying to do?

bye for now
Mary Beth G
Date: Tue, 28 Feb 1995 09:13:12 -0500
Subject: feet

On the question of bernina feet. I love the #10 edgestitch. Just got a #20
open toe satin stitch and am surprised by how much the extra visibility
helps. The walking foot for my 1530 goes on with no trouble, but the
walking foot on my 830 was a pain to jockey into position. I also bought
(don't know #) a braiding foot, which holds yarn, etc. down so you can
stitch over it, but I haven't had much opportunity to play with it.  My
next purchase will be a bulky overlock foot #12? so I can put in piping in
one pass instead of two.   I asked a question last week and didn't get any
answer so I'll try again.
I am interested in the "Creative Feet" foot that holds 1/4" ribbon/tubing
down so you can stitch over it (kind of like the Bernina braiding foot ,
but for thicker cords). Has anyone tried the Creative Feet? You have to get
a special shank adaptor for Berninas. 
Julia S
Date: Tue, 28 Feb 1995 14:14:04 -0500
Subject: I'll be upgrading after all!

 Well, folks, I found my dream machine (I think).  I found a used 1230 that
a (very respected) dealer will sell me for 200$.  Isn't that a deal?

Well... I do have to leave my 1090 behind.  I'll miss it. Isn't that funny?  

The 1230 was traded in because it had a 'noise' problem.  Is everyone
shuddering yet?  The dealer diagnosed and fixed the problem (a gear had
lossened up when its retaining pin turned loose), replacing the faulty gear
and replace the circuit board.  Apparently, any 1230 that goes in for
repairs gets a new board, as the company has updated the board recently.  

So, I'm taking the plunge.  The dealer assures me that the machine is 'as
good as new', carries it's original warranty (the 17 years left).  He is
highly recommended to me as very honest, so I'll take his word.  He WAS
indeed very straightforward with me on the phone, when asked why he had this
1230 sitting there, waiting to be sold: people are shy of buying repaired

I'm known ot be a very careful (and thorough) shopper for big ticket items
like that.  This is 'risk taking' for me.  But I figure the dealer comes
recommended and if anything can be repaired and resold 'as good as new',
it's gotta be a Bernina :)

Only problem now is that I have this vacation in New Orleans for the next 10
days so I won't be able to go and pick it up until 3/18.  That's going to be
some long vacation! (just kidding: I've been wanting to go to NO for 7 years

Finally, when I pick up the 1230, I can test drive it (I guess I could teach
sewing machine driver ed...) to my content.  And I have 30 days "no
questions asked"  to back out if I'm not satisfied with it.

So I'll keep you posted  and yes, I'm afraid I'll gross you out with
drooling over the 1230. Please accept my apology in advance :)
(i've been taking lessons in drooling from my 4 month old son...)


Date: Tue, 28 Feb 1995 14:16:10 -0500
Subject: Fabric Stores in New Orleans???


Does anyone know of good fabric stores in New Orleans?  I'll be arriving
there Thursday PM.

shush... Don't let my wife know I plan to 'visit' fabric establishments
while on vacation: she'll put me on the first plane back!


Date: Tue, 28 Feb 95 17:44:59 -0500
Subject: Re: Walking Foot

>You're right about the feeddogs -- in order for the walking foot to work
>effectively the feed dogs have to be raised.....

I think that the feed dogs are dropped just as you put the walking foot on.  
That would give you more clearance to manipulate the foot.  After the foot is 
attached, you would have to raise the feed dogs again to use the foot.  

Sue T 
Date: Tue, 28 Feb 95 16:34:59 -0700
Subject: Re: feet

     I'm new to this thread (and this group), so I hope I don't repeat 
     anything that's already been said.  I have the bulky overlock foot and 
     it was a life-saver when I was re-upholstering my dining room chairs 
     with all of the welting I put in.
     I am also interested in the Creative Feet.  I have the shank adapter, 
     and I've used it with a great bias-binder foot that my Bernina dealer 
     recommended to me (much cheaper than Bernina's foot).  This foot 
     worked great for all of the bias binding I put on my daughter's bibs.  
     So anyway, I haven't used the Creative Feet, but I have used 
     non-Bernina feet, and they seem to work fine.
     It's really nice to join this group.  I look forward to "chatting" 
     with all of you.  Oh, BTW, I used to own the 1230, then I upgraded to 
     the 1630 and gave my Mom the 1230 (she was one happy camper!).  Do you 
     guys also talk about Bernina sergers here too?  I have the 334DS and 
     just love it!
     Kari A
Date: Tue, 28 Feb 1995 15:38:46 -0800
Subject: Re: I'll Be Upgrading After all!

Sylvain, you have piqued my curiosity.  Am really anxious to hear the 
results of your "test drive" on the 1230.  I have a 1090 as well, and 
have been so happy with it that I haven't looked at another machine.
Maybe I should??

Date: Tue, 28 Feb 95 16:39:12 -0700
Subject: Re: I'll Be Upgrading After all!

     How did you manage to get such a great deal!?  $200 for a 1230 is 
     incredible.  I'm envious.  I wish I had done that well on my 1230 (or 
     better yet, my 1630)!
     If you're new machine works anything like mine did, you'll LOVE it!  I 
     really miss my 1230 sometimes - the stitch quality on the 1630 isn't 
     quite as good as on the 1230.  However, like I said before, my Mom has 
     my 1230, so I only have to drive for an hour if I want to use it. :-)
     It sounds like the dealer is going to back up his workmanship and 
     being able to test-drive it for a month is great!  Have fun in New 
     Orleans, and then have fun playing with that new machine!!
     See ya,
     Kari A
Date: Tue, 28 Feb 1995 17:54:46 MST
Subject: Creative Feet

I haven't used them but have bought a couple of cheapies for isolated
jobs...leather roller foot and an open toe embroidery.  They both work
fine with the adaptor (a necessity).  I ma interested in the bias binding
foot Kari mentioned...can anyone tell me what it is called and where one
might get one....Thanks a lot,

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