Sewing Machines

Best Heavy Duty Sewing Machine in 2020 Reviewed

The words heavy-duty and sewing machine aren’t something that a lot of people realize go hand in hand. The best on the market come with sturdy metal bodies that work to add weight to the machine and reduce the number of vibrations for a comfortable sewing experience.

Not only this but when you buy a heavy-duty sewing machine it means you are getting your hands on a product that is capable of being used for long periods and can stitch faster than most. The general build quality should mean it lasts a long time, but only when you find a quality product. This is why we have created our list of the best heavy duty sewing machines on the market. Each one has something different to offer but none will let you down and are ideal for a variety of sewing projects.

Summary of the Best Heavy Duty Sewing Machine
Reviews

Editor’s Choice: JUKI TL-2000Qi Sewing and Quilting Machine

When it comes to quality, it is hard to better Juki’s TL-2000Qi heavy-duty sewing machine. This is what a lot of people consider to be a premium product and it offers a lot more than the automatic needle threader and an LED light to make it easier to sew dark fabrics. With 1,500 stitches per minute, you’ll find it difficult to better its power for an at-home machine and despite its capacity for such a great output, it doesn’t vibrate as much as you might think. This is because of the aluminum die-cast arm.

The extension table opens up the space for quilting and larger projects and it has a wider throat than most even at the price. Both heavy-duty and high-quality, this is a sewing machine that can be used for your professional projects and it will make light work of personal designs and sewing needs. It’s easy to adjust the speed thanks to its microprocessor which gives you better needle control, even if you are an experienced sewer.

PROS:

  • Automatic needle threader
  • 1,500 stitches per minute capability
  • Low vibration even when using the top speed
  • Extension table
CONS:

(none)

Best Affordable: Singer Heavy Duty Sewing Machine, White

Singer is a name that you expect to see on this sort of this and this is their best heavy-duty sewing machine for beginners. Not only is it easy to use but the sturdy metal frame helps to keep the machine in place so you get fewer vibrations than a lot of the other machines out there. You get 23 built-in stitches that are easy to choose between thanks to the dial system and because of the buttonhole stitches you can use it for a multitude of projects that include crafts, fashion sewing, and plenty more.

They call it heavy duty because of the stitches per minute it is capable of. The 1,100 you get for this price is among the most going. This is because of the powerful motor but it doesn’t rely on this to make it a quality sewing machine. You get a selection of presser feet included, and bobbins, needles, spool pin felt, and many more useful additions. There is also a soft dust cover that makes it easier to keep this heavy-duty sewing machine clean even when you’re not using it.

PROS:

  • Capable of 1,100 stitches per minute
  • Heavy metal frame keeps it sturdy
  • Has 23 built-in stitches
  • Automatic needle threader
CONS:

  • Not as many options as the more expensive models

Best Free Motion: Brother Quilting and Sewing Machine, PQ1500SL

With enough built-in features to keep the advanced sewer satisfied, the PQ1500SL is one of the best heavy-duty sewing machines and can be put to professional use. Capable of 1,500 stitches per minute it is one of the most powerful machines on our list and it comes with loads of accessories including 7 presser feet, instruction manual, knee lifter, and a lot more.

With plenty of options for controlling the dog feed and an automatic needle threader, it does make life easier even though the wealth of options might be a little confusing for the beginner. The free arm opens up a lot of options and makes it possible to sew sleeves together and as you expect from a Brother sewing machine, this comes with a 25-year limited warranty. The LED light is bright and gives you enough illumination to sew dark fabrics with ease and when you start stitching you’ll notice the difference in quality straight away.

PROS:

  • Automatic needle threader
  • Capable of 1,500 stitches per minute
  • Includes 7 presser feet
  • Built-in knee lifter to adjust the presser foot hands-free
CONS:

(none)

Best For Thicker Materials: SINGER | Quantum Stylist 9960 Computerized Portable Sewing Machine

With a massive 600 built-in stitches, you would expect this to be a heavy-duty sewing machine based on its versatility. There all kinds included from the basic to the decorative as well as 5 alphanumeric options to choose from when personalizing your projects. You can also use the 13 1-step buttonholes and mirror imaging and it is backed by the 850 stitches per minute. This isn’t the most but for the price, you’ll find that it can really push through large projects with ease.

You can use this heavy-duty sewing machine to sew some of the thicker materials such as denim, leather, and canvas among others as it finished projects quickly. There are a range of presser feet included and an easy threading system so you can get started when you want to and not when a fiddly piece of thread permits. The rigid body is known for its heavy-duty build which is why it can provide reliable, skip-free sewing.

PROS:

  • 600 built-in stitches
  • Capable of 850 stitches per minute
  • Can sew thicker materials
  • Heavy-duty body is well built
CONS:

  • Can be a little loud at full speed

Best Value: Singer 4411 Heavy Duty Sewing Machine with 11 Built-in Stitches

Another heavy-duty Singer sewing machine here and although it looks similar to some of their other products in the range, this one is budget-friendly and gives the beginner plenty of options to play around with. The 4411 comes with 11 built-in stitches which might be a bit restricting for the advanced user but anyone starting out will feel confident without being overwhelmed.

You can adjust the needle position making it great for decorative stitching and it has a strong motor which is why it is capable of delivering 1,100 stitches per minute. You can adjust the pressure foot pressure which makes it capable of getting through some of the tougher materials and because of its heavy metal interior, and stainless steel bedplate, this is a tough machine that doesn’t shake as much as others in the niche.

PROS:

  • Good value
  • 1,100 stitches per minute
  • Heavy-duty interior
  • Adjustable needle position
CONS:

  • Not as many built-in stitches for some needs

Best Value (Also Consider): SINGER Confidence Quilter 7469Q Computerized Electronic Portable Sewing Machine

It’s hard to find a sewing machine that offers so many built-in stitches at the price range but Singer always manages to pull out a few surprises. You get 98 with the 7469Q and as you might be able to tell by the name, this is the ideal heavy duty sewing machine for anyone who wants to use one for quilting. This is because of the extension table and four bonus quilting feet that are specially included for larger projects.

You also get twin needle control and an adjustable stitch length which is better than most of the competition. The programmable needle means you can move it up and down to suit your needs and the automatic threader and top drop-in bobbin system makes it easy to get started. It has a heavy-duty metal frame which means it vibrates less and is sturdy enough to last a long time.

PROS:

  • 98 built-in stitches
  • Extension table and adjustable needle for quilting
  • Heavy-duty metal frame
  • Automatic threader
CONS:

  • Work area could be brighter

Best For Beginners: Brother ST150HDH Strong and Tough Computerized Sewing Machine, White

For a lot of people, strong and tough is just another word for heavy-duty but this is one of the best when considering which heavy-duty sewing machine to buy. However, this sturdy machine is capable of sewing the likes of denim which is no mean feat for most machines. The built-in stitches are all changeable on the LCD display on the side of the machine making it easy to decide which is best for your needs. There are 50 to choose from which is a decent amount for most people.

The extra-large extension table can accommodate fabrics making it ideal for quilting and there an automatic threading aid that makes it easy to get a new project off the ground. You get 9 presser feet included which opens up lots of possibilities and you get a variety of needles so you can up the ante depending on the weight of the fabric. The metal frame gives it a durability that only comes with heavy-duty sewing machines and comes with Brothers 25-year limited warranty included.

PROS:

  • 50 built-in stitches
  • Capable of sewing heavy materials such as denim and multiple layers
  • Includes 9 presser feet
  • Quiet operation
CONS:

  • Some people want more built-in stitches for the price
Heavy Duty Sewing Machine Guide

Although we all like to assume our sewing machine of choice is well built, this isn’t always the case, For it to call itself heavy-duty, a sewing machine needs to tick certain boxes. Yes, the frame needs to be heavy and made from quality materials but if it doesn’t stop it from vibrating so much you need to take a break every few minutes then your money won’t be well spent.

This is why we have created the following buyer’s guide. We detail the ins and outs of what a heavy-duty sewing machine should be capable of. Because of this, the product you settle on will be a winner.

What To Look For In A Heavy Duty Sewing Machine

Metal Frame

This might seem obvious but you’ll be surprised at home many brands use cheap materials to build their products. The better sewing machines will have a heavy metal frame that ensures it reduces vibrations. This will mean it is going to weigh more than some of the other types of the sewing machine but the benefit will be in how long you can use it without needing a break.

Stitches Per Minute

Although this is important, it shouldn’t put you off certain models completely. A lot of people find a machine that can push out 850 stitches per minute gives them enough power. Although there are more significant features for a heavy-duty sewing machine to offer, a professional will need a faster machine to get their projects finished on time.

Adjustable Speed

For a lot of people, this is more important than the stitch output. Being able to control the speed can help you to sew tougher materials will reliable stitches. Also, a beginner will want to be able to take things a little slower as they build up their confidence.

Built-In Stitches

There is a tendency to have to spend more to get more with heavy-duty sewing machines which is something you will find in the number of built-in stitches they offer. Some of the budget options might only have around 50 or below whilst the more advanced models have hundreds. 

A technical sewing machine will give you plenty of options including alphanumeric fonts so you can personalize your pieces.

LED Light

A lot of people assume their heavy-duty sewing machine will come with an LED light as standard but this isn’t always the case. Check to make sure the model you like the look of comes with an LED light because it will make sewing dark fabric a lot easier. 

Also, check on the quality as some products come with one but it isn’t bright enough to truly help.

Additional Presser Feet

The more presser feet you have included with your machine, the greater the number of projects you can take on. Most of the machines we recommend come with more than a few which means you can use your machine for sewing zippers and buttonholes.

Up/Down Needle

This is important if you are sewing different fabrics together or if you are working with tougher, thicker materials. Being able to move the needle means you can take on a variety of projects and work including quilting. 

Warranty

Not every heavy-duty sewing machine is going to come with a long warranty although you should expect any reputable brand to include one as standard. The length can vary between 2 – 25 years and the more you get the better. This is because there are so many moving parts to a sewing machine that they could break without it being your fault.

To protect your purchase (especially if you are spending a lot of money), always look for a product with a lengthy warranty.

Portability

Although you want your heavy-duty sewing machine to be heavy enough to withstand the high speeds without vibrating too much, you will still want the freedom to be able to take it anywhere. A lot of people carry their sewing machines to groups and classes or just take it to friends to help them stitch something.

Extension Table

This isn’t specific to a heavy-duty sewing machine but it is a trait that the better products should offer. Because of the thicker materials, these machines can sew, you never know the size and shape of the fabrics you are going to be working with. An extension table makes it easy for you to use your machine for quilting and makes the process more comfortable.

What Is The Difference Between A Regular Sewing Machine and Heavy Duty?

Although a lot of the features remain the same, one of the major differences between the two involves its ability to sew tougher materials.

A regular sewing machine might not be so well suited to the likes of denim or leather which is why a lot of people look for a heavy-duty sewing machine. The parts tend to be stronger and they are capable of holding larger needles that can pierce stronger materials with ease.

The stitches per minute will say a lot about how well it can perform and a professional will need as many as possible so it can keep pace with their ability.

Do I Need A Heavy Duty Sewing Machine?

This is a question that many people ask when looking for the right model for their needs. A lot will depend on the type of work you will be putting it through as a heavy-duty sewing machine might not be necessary.

The majority of people who look for a heavy-duty sewing machine are professionals. This is because they need a reliable machine that is fine for constant use. The heavy-duty sewing machines also tend to have more features than basic models, so a professional can switch between settings to take on different types of work.

How Much Should I Spend On A Heavy-Duty Sewing Machine?

This depends on your needs.

A professional will find that a basic heavy-duty sewing machine can be too limited in what it is capable of and will need to look for something with more features, stitches per minute, and built-in stitches to name a few. This can cost around $500 for a premium model but the amount of options you get is impressive for this kind of budget.

Anyone who needs a sewing machine that does more than the basics can usually find something for around $250 – 300 to fit their needs. Finally, a beginner can find a quality heavy-duty sewing machine for under $200 that will last a long time. You might have to settle for only a handful of built-in stitches but should end up with a reliable product if you get it right.

How To Maintain A Heavy Duty Sewing Machine

Proper maintenance for a heavy-duty sewing machine is no different from what you should expect to have to do with a regular machine. It is best to make sure you keep it in the soft or hard case when in storage so it does not collect in the small spaces. Over time, dust can really impact the permanence.

Also, give it a proper clean every now and then and remember to oil it regularly. Although a lot of people tend to forget, take it for a service with a professional once a year to prolong its lifespan.

Will A Heavy Duty Sewing Machine Vibrate A Lot?

Even a heavy-duty sewing machine cannot eliminate vibrations. However, they are known for having a sturdy metal interior that reduced vibrations compared to standard models.

You can always put a felt mat underneath to stop it from moving on the table so much or reduce the speed if necessary.

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