Are you one of those who don’t fall for all the bells and whistles of a computerised sewing machine? Are you often bothered by the overwhelming features a sewing machine offers? Well, then you must go for something that can limit your distractions.
A mechanical sewing machine is extremely useful for stitching and tailoring various projects. Even if you are not an expert, you can still adapt to these machines in no time. The learning curve is quite easy to get used to.
True home sewers know that a mechanical sewing machine is the best way to make quick repairs and your clothes great. Since there are a lot of options available in the market, you need to make an informed choice that turns out to be the best investment in the long run. Read about these best mechanical sewing machines present in the market and make your final choice.
What is a Mechanical Sewing Machine?
The mechanical sewing machines are one of the first sewing machines introduced. They are still used to sew many kinds of fabrics and are considered the go-to option for many sewers. Comparative to computerised sewing machines, their functionality is quite limited. Still, mechanical sewing machines are extremely efficient.
Operation and Design
A mechanical sewing machine is operated manually. It typically knobs or dials to adjust the settings. More or less, it is a basic sewing machine unable to perform embroidery stitches. It consists of a fabric unit and a threading unit.
- The fabric unit feeds the fabric past the threading unit. This is where a stitch is made. This also prevents creasing and folding.
- The threading unit comprises a needle-thread assembly. It is responsible for creating patterns and stitch formations. It also contains the main functional part of the machine.
Most of the mechanical sewing machines have a single feed mechanism. While some pricey ones feature at least 2 feed mechanisms.
Advantages of Mechanical Sewing Machines
- These machines have a simple yet reliable design that makes them beginner-friendly. So if you’re an old school person, you will prefer using these machines over computerised sewing machines.
- Lack of unnecessary features and circuit boards make it a lot more accessible for every kind of sewer. It contains fewer compartments and fewer complexities.
- A mechanical sewing machine can do wonders at an affordable price. Although limited, it does bring you flexibility in sewing. You can achieve exceptional results using it.
- Mechanical sewing machines are best known for their longevity and durability. It does not stop working mid-job.
Top 8 High End Mechanical Sewing Machines to Buy in 2022
1. Brother GX37 Sewing Machine
Brother GX37 Sewing Machine is a potential favourite of beginners. It is a mechanical machine that comes with 37 unique built-in stitches. This range allows you to find the exact stitch, hence the stitches are more than enough for most projects. It also includes an auto-size buttonhole.
Because of the stitch dial and printed stitches on the machine, the Brother GX37 makes everyday sewing a breeze. The sewing area is brightly lit with an LED light to help you see the needle. This model is small to mid-sized and easy to transport.
Moreover, this mechanical sewing machine becomes hassle-free with its automatic needle threader. The threader easily pulls a thread through the needle. Its jam-resistant drop-in top bobbin is an ideal feature for beginners.
The GX37 has the ability to stitch up to 6mm thick fabric. On top of the machine, three dials are located including stitch width dial, stitch length dial and stitch tension dial. The convenient free-arm helps you accomplish hard tasks. The machine also features straightforward reverse stitching.
It comes with a storage container for bits
It includes 6 presser feet
It is portable and lightweight
It is very affordable and gives quality stitching
The manual is quite difficult to understand
All in all, the Brother GX37 Sewing Machine is reliable, bringing you exactly what you need. It gives exceptional stitches that elevate the sewing skills of beginners. So as long as you’re not working on an advanced level, this machine is perfect for you.
2. SINGER 9960 Sewing and Quilting Machine
The Quantum Stylist 9960 is one of the most popular sewing machines known for personalising projects efficiently. Designed with ease of use in mind, the SINGER 9960 is an all-rounder. It also acts as a perfect companion for the budding designer.
SINGER Quantum Stylist 9960 is designed with 600 custom stitches including 4 calligraphic styles. The stitch range also includes 13 automatic one-step buttonholes. A printed chart on the upper lid helps you to go through all the stitches at once. Its quality build gives a skip-free sewing experience.
In order to give the best free motion quilting experience, SINGER 9960 comes with the fastest stitching speed of 850 stitches per minute. The automatic needle threader brings you the entire machine threaded in a few seconds. To add to this efficiency, the machine is equipped with an automatic thread cutter.
In addition, there is a speed sliding function allowing you to control the maximum stitching speed. It also features an Electronic Autopilot function that cues you in case of an error. You can also sew without needing a foot pedal.
The work area is brightly lit with LED lights. The LCD screen along with the so-called digital information adviser helps you customise your stitches effectively. Its top drop-in bobbin makes it user-friendly. Some other features are the extended table, a wide range of included feet and accessories.
It is an ideal mechanical, quilting machine for experts
It offers excellent quality with a lot of creativity
The stitch patterns are great
The stitch options and speed are quite overwhelming for beginners
The SINGER 9960 Quantum Stylist runs quietly while offering exceptional results. It is extremely competitive and gives you complete enjoyment while in use. Bottom line, you will not be disappointed with this great multi-purpose sewing machine.
3. SINGER 4411 Heavy Duty Sewing Machine
The SINGER 4411 Heavy Duty Sewing Machine is packed with great features making it perfect for long term sewing investment. While asking for minimal maintenance, it lasts much longer than other less sturdy sewing machines.
The SINGER 4411 is a heavy-duty sewing machine with 60% more powerful motors than the standard ones. Hence you can sew heavy fabrics without fearing to burn out your machine. The heavy-duty internal metal frame makes it sturdy enough to handle multiple layers.
Moreover, it comes with 11 built-in stitches which are all displayed on the LCD screen. These stitches include 6 basic stitches, 4 decorative stitches and one automatic four-step buttonhole. There is nothing complicated about this buttonhole maker.
Making things easier, it features 4 presser feet i.e. all-purpose foot, buttonhole foot, button foot, and zipper foot. The stitch length and width is adjustable. It is a high-quality mechanical sewing machine with multiple control dials. These allow you to make stitch adjustments.
You can either increase or decrease the presser foot pressure depending on the type of fabric. The bobbin area is covered with a clear plastic cover where the bobbins just drop in place. The automatic thread cutter is present right on the sewing head.
Besides, its blazing fast speed of 1,100 stitches per minute along with the reverse lever lets you finish off any project and start another one right away. Screwdriver, bobbins, spool pins, lint brush combinations and an instruction manual are some of its accessories.
It is a heavy-duty machine with 60% more power
The top drop-in bobbin has a quick setup
There is a built-in thread cutter
There is a stainless steel bedplate
It is a bit louder and the speed is quite difficult to handle for beginners
The SINGER 4411 Heavy Duty Sewing Machine offers features that make you capable of handling any sewing project. This workhorse has a mechanical design that brings huge control over the stitches. It can be considered a strong contender against the best computerised sewing machines.
4. SINGER MX60 Sewing Machine
SINGER MX60 is the most suitable upgrade to your current sewing machine. This cute little tool is a perfect entry-level sewing machine and lightweight also. Although it is originally designed for mending work, its unusual heavy frame locks it in its place.
The SINGER MX60 is a top-notch mechanical sewing machine with 6 built-in stitches and 57 stitch applications. Just like SINGER 4411, it also includes a 4-step buttonhole. You can access its front-loading bobbin by removing the accessory compartment. You can also access the free arm by doing so.
This lightweight and portable sewing machine have a stitch selector dial right in front of you. Its reverse stitch lever will allow you to secure a seam and avoid unravelling. Depending on the fabric, you can fine-tune the tension with its thread tension dial.
Then, an LED work light is fitted above the work area to help you see in dim light. It is highly easy to use and set up as there is nothing complicated about this machine. The manual includes simple and easy to follow threading guides.
Its heavy frame avoid stitch skipping
It has a compact size
It features a manual knob to handle common stitches
The machine cannot handle heavy or layered fabrics
Although the SINGER MX60 Sewing Machine is not so diverse, it gets the jobs done for beginners. So it is so easy to maintain and a good starter. Even without any bells and whistles, it is top quality and the best budget mechanical sewing machine.
5. SINGER M2100 Sewing Machine
The SINGER M2100 is an impeccable model that opens a new world of artistry. It is every beginner’s dream come true. Its fancy features facilitate the usage and do not intimidate the beginners. Also, the machine is designed with refreshing and sophisticated aesthetics.
It features 63 stitch applications and 8 built-in stitches that will allow you to perform key sewing techniques. With its pre-set stitch width and length, the M2100 eliminates any work hassle. The stitch selection dial right on the front of the machine will let you choose your favourite stitch quickly.
SINGER M2100 also comes with a reverse stitch feature that ensures the stitches don’t come out loose. It is a lightweight and portable sewing machine built with a heavy-duty metal frame. The darning plate will prevent the fabric from coming in contact with the feed teeth.
In addition, the extra high-pressure foot lifter will help you accommodate heavy fabrics. It also features a snap-on presser that can be removed or attached. The free arm and LED light make things more convenient. The included accessories are a bobbin, pack of needles, a screwdriver, all-purpose foot, buttonhole foot, lint brush and seam ripper.
It features a storage compartment for accessories
It comes with an extensive warranty
The bobbin case is transparent
Some complaints have been reported about constant thread breakage
The SINGER M2100 Sewing Machine is a user-friendly tool with straightforward features. It is a low maintenance sewing machine that helps you elevate your creativity. Its stitch application will allow you to use different techniques as well.
6. Brother PQ1500SL Sewing and Quilting Machine
Offered for a mid-range price, Brother PQ1500SL is a high-speed sewing and quilting machine. This straight stitched machine is marketed as a “dream quilting machine”. It offers the necessary strength and support for thicker fabrics.
The Brother PQ1500SL lacks fancy built-in stitches, however, it mesmerises sewers with its blazing fast speed i.e. 1,500 stitches per minute. This lightning-fast speed allows you to finish your tasks quickly.
One of the noticeable features is the pin feed mechanism. This mechanism is adjustable and allows you to make changes with a wide variety of fabrics. The stitch length is also adjustable from 1mm to 7mm. It can be regulated using a dial located on the front.
Brother PQ1500SL comes with 7 presser feet. These are walking foot, ¼” piercing foot, adjustable zipper foot, invisible zipper foot, quilting foot, straight stitch foot and rolled hem foot.
Although you may need the patience to use this feature, the built-in needle threader is a real lifesaver. You can also push a button to use the automatic thread cutter whenever you want. The 11” x 21.5” extended workspace will help you work on long and bulky quilting projects.
The knee lifter gives high-level control and can be placed under the extension table once your work is done. You can also adjust the presser foot pressure for thin or thick fabrics. The foot pedal is made for you to adjust the stitching speed and thread tension.
Moreover, the built-in handle wheel lets you adjust the needle position.
It comes with a super bright LED light
It is made for free-motion quilting
It comes at an affordable price yet it is durable
The machine is not portable
The Brother PQ1500SL Sewing and Quilting Machine is the best mechanical for quilters. It will let the beginner enhance their sewing as well as quilting skills. It is also perfect to handle even very delicate fabrics.
7. Janome 2212 Sewing Machine
Janome is a leader in the market and hence why Janome 2212 lies on this list. This reliable machine includes solid features making it stand out.
This mechanical sewing machine features 12 built-in stitches including a buttonhole stitch, a straight stitch, a reverse stitch, decorative stitches, and zigzag stitches. The design is very simple with a turn dialer located on the front for pattern selection. On top of the machine, there is a stitch guide to let you select the correct stitch. The stitch length is also adjustable from 0mm to 4mm. Its dialer is present right beside the stitch options.
Although there is no automatic threader, the front-loading bobbin is quite easy to thread. The machine can handle a wide range of fabrics from sheers to denim, even stretchy knit fabrics. There is also a free arm which is great to sew cuffs and sleeves.
Moreover, the feed dogs in Janome 2212 sewing machines can be lowered. This means that the machine allows you to move the fabric freely and does not pull it back. Hence you are also able to do free motion quilting with it. The sewing speed is 860 stitches per minute.
Another one of its features is the dual needle positions. The needles can be adjusted in two different positions. This feature is quite helpful in preventing jamming and skipped stitches. Its built-in thread cutter won’t let you use scissors anymore. Some other features are manual tension control, snap-on presser feet and pull-push bobbin winder.
It has solid and sturdy construction
Its manual functions are quite easy to use
The feed dogs are retractable
The top drop-in bobbin is difficult to understand for beginners
In the end, the Janome 2212 sewing machine is most suitable for normal daily life sewing. This incredible sewing machine offers features with the best stitch quality. Although there is a bit of a learning curve to it, it is still a great option for beginners.
8. Janome HD3000 Heavy-Duty Sewing Machine
Janome HD3000 Sewing Machine is made for those who like to work with lots of heavy fabrics. This heavy-duty machine is engineered intelligently with a simple layout. It is a hands-on unit with an easy to use interface.
Janome HD3000 is built with a heavy-duty aluminium body making it sturdy and long-lasting. The machine comes with 18 built-in stitches including a one-step buttonhole. The stitch length and width is adjustable. The flip-up stitch panel located on the machine is quite useful to consult.
Furthermore, the bobbin winding has a push-pull mechanism. It is also automatic and jam-proof. An automatic needle threader is built-in in the Janome HD3000. So within a matter of seconds and without any eye-straining, you can thread a needle.
Making the whole experience more convenient, the Janome HD3000 comes with a sewing speed of 860 stitches per minute. To hold the fabric with the right amount of pressure, this heavy-duty machine offers a dial to adjust the presser foot pressure.
Also, the Janome HD3000 mechanical sewing machine comes with a 7-piece feed dog that lets you have full control over the fabric feeding. This is a crucial factor in embroidery. The free arm will let you navigate the fabric around and sew circular finishes. Some other features are a reverse stitch lever, built-in needle threader and thread cutter.
It is a true workhorse
It operates smoothly and quietly
It does not offer any fabric limitations
It is not lightweight and hard to transport
The Janome HD3000 machine is a heavy-duty sewing machine offering excellent stitch quality. This beast offers smooth performance and is ideal for complex projects. In conclusion, it is a true winner
Does a mechanical sewing machine use electricity?
Nowadays, almost all kinds of sewing machines work on electricity. The machines that do not need electricity are only those operated by a knee treadle or a foot. These are mechanical sewing machines. For instance, the Janome 712T Treadle sewing machine operates without any electrical power.
How do mechanical sewing machines work?
Following factors are important in the working of a mechanical sewing machine:
- The powerhouse of a mechanical sewing machine is a motor. Since they are not as advanced as their counterparts, mechanical sewing machines need threading.
- After powerhouse, threading is the second important step in the operation. It results in stitch production.
- Next, stitch creation starts where needles pierce the fabric for stitching. The threads interlock in synchronisation and create perfectly looking seams.
- As soon as stitching starts, fabric feeding starts as well. Make sure there is no slipping and fabric feeding goes on smoothly. In the end, some adjustments depending on the type of fabric and stitch are made.
Sewing is a timeless and invaluable skill that needs the respect it deserves. To feel its worth, you need to have the right companion in this experience. The mechanical sewing machines are versatile and efficient, superior to others most of the time. If you get the taste of a mechanical sewing machine, you will never go back to the computerised ones.
The aforementioned models are quite comparable and surely fit the bill. These are the best encouragement you need in your skills. So are you ready to take a step further to vouch for versatility and durability in your sewing.