The only thing I would really worry about is that so many reviews, on this site and others, talk about how light weight it is, so light that it moves when you sew some things.
That may mean plastic gears, lots of plastic parts.
If you are not planning on lots and lots of sewing, that can work. However, plastic gears never work for me, or even in my Middle school classroom where they get light use but by people learning to sew.
That said, I do have one Brother and the kids prefer it because they can set the speed slower than on any other machine we have. But I bought it from a dealership that also services it, and they recommended it for a classroom and knew what it might be subject to in there - very light use, but by kids who 1) don't know what they are doing; and 2) get impatient.
I personally have 2 1980s Singers that I use a lot - the "teacher's version" of the last ones that the true Singer company made for schools. They have everything metal, and lasted through a couple of decades of classroom use, and now my using them through everything from clothes to awnings to SCA pavilions.
The other one I own is about 10 years old, a Kenmore-made-by-Janome that is a fancy-do-about everything machine. I love it, when I need specific, detailed, very careful sewing, as it ALWAYS sews well. Does embroidery too, but I never seem to have time for that.
So my answer to you is that it depends on what you want to do with it. If you are just sewing your own SCA or re-enactment clothes, and also regular everyday, life items like clothes and curtains, and you don't mean to put it through hours of use day after day, it would probably work well.
If you are going to do SCA clothes for a bunch of people, and probably also banners, etc., and know you ARE going to put in a lot of time for a lot of people, I would worry about that persistent term "lightweight", and the construction that it implies. If I was going to gamble on an unseen sewing machine, I would go for something that says heavy duty and metal gears, like (JUST as an example) http://www.overstock.com/Crafts-Sewing/Janome-11590-Heavy-duty-Electronic-Sewing-Machine-Refurbished/3644302/product.html?rcmndsrc=2
Rowena, Aethelmearc - who use to do not only SCA clothes and tents, but Renfairs, for about 15 years.
---- barb <dragon.rose55@...
> This thing seems to have a lot of bells and whistles, and I am in the market for a machine that has automatic buttonholes and maybe some decorative stitches...
> Does any one have one of these, or any recommendations pro or con?
> ♥ barb ♥
> my little ol` web page
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