Thursday, August 14, 2014

Introducing Hope

A couple of months ago I purchased a used HandiQuilter HQ16 set up to replace Patience, my Voyager 17 longarm machine. Why the change? I couldn't get my stitch length regulator to work properly and was getting frustrated with my machine. After doing some research, it seemed that this was an issue from the start. I could upgrade my electronics and stitch length regulator but that would cost me several thousand dollars. An investment I wasn't willing to make.

On a whim, I started searching on craigslist for a "new" machine. That is when I found Hope. Yep, I named her Hope because I hope to improve my longarm skills on her.  I figure the cost of buying this set up less what I will sell my Voyager for is about the same as what the upgraded electronics would have cost.

"Hope"
I was able to transfer over my Red Snapper system, light bar and batting cradle that I made. I float my batting and like to keep pet hair off of it. The clear vinyl cradle does the trick for me. That is what you see wrapped around the front poles.

The system I bought had the upgrade rails & poles along with the base cabinet system. While it is a bit taller overall that I am used to, I am liking seeing the stitching without bending over as much. I know, an adjustable studio table would have solved this but the storage underneath is just awesome!

I did end up replacing the front handles so I could have the tilt screen on it. The original set had a screen but it faced up and I couldn't see it without getting a stool to stand on. I also upgraded the carriage tracks and wheels. It had the original plastic tracks with a few wear spots on them. Changing the plastic out to a metal track just made sense, especially since the table rails were already done.

I am enjoying this new system. So far, so good. I think I'll be sticking with this set up for a long time to come. Plus, the folks at HandiQuilter have been terrific to deal with - from the sales to the support people. I am super pleased with my dealings and would recommend them to anyone looking to buy a HandiQuilter machine.

First Quilt Loaded Onto New System