I’m late writing this but there you go. I love my Sweet Sixteen and here’s what I’ve learned:
The key is learning how to adjust the tension. You just have to accept the fact that every time you change the top thread or bobbin, you have to sew on a test quilt and adjust the tension on top and/or bottom. Pay attention when you get your training because the bobbin adjustments are tiny. Once you get over being nervous about it, it’s kind of empowering.
Brush the lint out of the bobbin area often. I do it every time I change the bobbin. And I add oil pretty often as well.
I got the table that comes with it and I’m not a fan. I used paste wax on the top of the table to help the fabric move on it better and that helped. But the edges of the table are sharp and when your quilt falls over the edge it stays there. Why can’t they make these table with rounded edges? And, if you stick with this table you will definitely want the ‘wings’ the make it bigger.
I’m lucky in that Steve is going to build me a table to match the rest of the furniture in my studio. The top will be smooth and slick and the edges will be rounded. When it’s done I’ll post photos.
Steve installed my quilt-holding clamp system above the sweet sixteen. I’m working on my iPad and it’s hard to go back and find my original posts about this system. Basically I’ve got an inexpensive quick-release clamp on nylon cord that runs through an eye-bolt in the ceiling. The cord runs through a toggle so that it’s easy to raise and lower the clamp. I only need two here.
The controls are simple. Really simple. It takes a little getting used to but I like it. I’m running at 50% speed. The needle can be set to stop up or down. It takes a little bit to get used to the speed (or lack thereof) at the beginning and ending of your stitching. I’m used to it now and like it.
There is no knee lift. In fact, the presser foot does not raise in the traditional way.
The foot control is very sensitive. And the slope seems high. I put a paperback book at the base of the foot control. I rest my heel on it and it has helped me control the stitching speed and my ankle is less stressed.
I like a lighter weight quilting thread and I have had the best luck sewing with Aurifill’s 50 weight thread. I haven’t used much else so can’t report on that.
Pay attention when you change needles. If you don’t put it in just right you will have problems. There is a trick to getting the needle straight and the person who trains you should show you how to do it well.
I hope this helps any of you who are considering this machine. As I said, I’m a fan.
I’m off to Canada in an hour. I go to the Royal City Quilt Guild in Guelph first and then on to the York Heritage Quilt Guild in Toronto. I’m teaching every day until I go on to Paris but I’ll do my best to blog on the road. Happy stitching!
Sent from my iPad