There are a lot of sewing machines out there, but not all of them are great for quilting. Many sewing machines have small throats that make it difficult to work with larger projects like a quilt, and some even have very little space to work with under the presser foot, making it difficult to layer the fabric. In this article, we’ll be talking about the best large throat sewing machines for quilting, and we’ll give you our top recommendations for quilters who are looking to buy a quality machine that will last.
Best Large Throat Sewing Machines For Quilting
Below you’ll find out list of the top large throat sewing machines for quilting, ranked and rated. While this is by no means an extensive list, we believe it’s a great start! All of these machines are high-quality and will last you a long time if you take care of them. While choosing a sewing machine with large throat space is obviously our main goal here, don’t forget about other important quality of life features when making your choice!
The Juki TL-2010Q was made with quilters in mind. It’s a amazingly fast machine, capable of 1,500 stitches per minute. However, it also features a generous throat space and a cool extension table which makes crafting large pieces, like quilts, a breeze.
It comes with a number of feet, including a number of free motion quilting feet, hemming, zipper, etc. While it’s not as fancy as some other machines, if you primarily want to do quilting, this work horse will serve you right. It features stop and cut buttons for efficient work, but it will also allow you to cut using the foot pedal, which is cool. You’ll also get a convenient knee lever for the presser foot, which allows you to adjust it hands-free.
- 8.5″ throat space
- 1500 Stitches per minute
- Large bobbin (Can use cones)
- Lots of feet
- Extension table
- Needle Up/Down
- Foot pedal for auto cutting
- Knee lever for presser foot
- Only does straight stitches
- No on-board computer
- Need screwdriver to change feet
- Side load rather than drop-in bobbin
King Quilter II
If you’re looking for a dedicated quilting machine and you don’t mind spending a bit of money, then look no further than the King Quitler II long arm quilting machine. This beast of a machine has an enormous 18 inch throat space, and it’s a dream to work on it for quilts.
Of course, the negatives are that it’s pretty pricey, and that it isn’t good for much else besides quilting. So, if you are not interested in a professional quilting device, this could be overkill. However, if you make and sell things and you need a machine that is powerful and fast, this is it. It also features touchscreens up to 7 inches, handle bars with controls, and optional computerized pro stitcher system.
- 18″ throat space
- 2,200 Stitches per minute
- Needle Up/Down
- Stitching precision and Cruise Mode
- M Class Bobbin
- 4.3″ color touch screen
- Front handlebar controls
- Lighted needle area
- Optional computerized pro stitcher system
- Really only good for quilting projects
- Takes up a lot of space
Baby Lock Jazz II
Looking for a more affordable machine that still offers great throat space? Then the Baby Lock Jazz II could be for you. This excellent machine is the cheapest one on our list, but it still offers a very generous 12″ throat space. It’s a mechanical machine which offers just the right amount of features.
However, while the Baby Lock Jazz II is a great budget quilting and sewing machine, keep in mind that you will be losing features going with a cheaper model. This includes some valuable automatic features, speed, and other quality of life features which are present in more expensive machines.
- 12″ throat space
- LED needle lighting
- 1,000 stitches per minute
- hands-free presser foot lever
- Built-in needle threader
- Handles heavy fabric well
- Free motion capable
- built-in thread cutter
- No start/stop button
- Machine is heavy
- Only 28 built-in stitches
- Doesn’t hold large thread cones
- Thread cutter is not automatic
How To Choose A Sewing Machine For Quilting
Know what stitches are available
You don’t need every stitch under the sun, but there are a few which you must have. The most common are straight, zig-zag, and blanket stitch. Make sure the machine you pick has these, and everything else is just gravy. You might even save some money ditching features you might not use.
Needle up and needle down buttons
These buttons allows you to raise the presser foot and adjust the fabric without moving it out of position. It’s a very useful feature, and it works great when you’re working with large projects like a quilt. Make sure the machine you pick has this feature.
Get the largest throat width you can
Choose a machine with a larger throat width to make your job easier. Bigger is almost always better here, so whatever you can fit into your budget is the way to go. Though you can obviously still quilt with a machine that has a smaller throat if you have to.
Speed control is helpful
Speed control allows you to stitch slower for applique, or faster to finish off long borders.
In closing, it’s important to know what features you can live without. You can easily spend $10,000 on a sewing machine with all the bells and whistles if you want to, but that’s not realistic for most people, no matter how cool they are. Instead, we have to strike a balance between features and price. Make sure to read the description carefully and make sure that you’re not forgoing a valuable feature to save $100, but also make sure you are over spending on features which you’ll never use.