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Sailrite Leatherwork Machine

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Hi, I am new to leather sewing and am looking to buy a machine.  Does anyone have experience with the Sailrite Leatherwork machine?  It is in my price range but I am also open to suggestions.  I am planning on sewing bags and small items. Any input/advice would be appreciated.  Thank you,

Diane

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Sailrite are generally expensive but have a good service reputation. This looks like their LS-1 painted green portable walking foot sewing machine placed in a table with a decent servo motor. The maximum thread size it can handle is V92. If I'm not mistaken they were once sold through Tandy stores. These portable machines were designed for sewing sail material not leather. Most portable walking foot sewing machines have very aggressive teeth on their feed dog and pressor foot and have a tendency to leave marks. For about the same money if all you need is a walking foot (feed dog, pressor foot) you could get a Juki DU-1181N ( max thread of V138) for about the same price.

Personally I would look at a triple feed machine where material is feed through by the feed dog, the needle and the pressor foot. I would recommend you look at upholstery class machines like the Juki DNU-1541S ( max thread of V138) for about $1800 or a clone triple feed maybe like a Consew 206RB-5 for about $1500.

Also I would recommend you visit a vendor and test drive a couple of machines with a sample of the materials and the thread you are planning on using. Just like cars there is also the used machine market where you can buy a good used machine at a reduced price.

Buy Once, Cry Once.

kgg

 

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There are a lot of good triple feed machines on the used market. The Sailrite is less refined than the Singer 111 or 211, Consew, Juki, Mitsubishi, Seiko, and Brother machines. A 211W155 or 156 or the Japanese clones are all good options. The 155 is triple feed and the 156 is triple feed with reverse.  I have a 112W117 triple feed 2 needle (no reverse) that is about 100 years old. You should be able to find most of these machines in operating condition for $500 to $1000.

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KGG,  Thank you for your advice.  I will take a look at some of your suggestions.  My thought on the Sailrite also had to do with the service as I am not very technical :). There are so many choices but I am trying to keep in the lower price point.  It is great to have somewhere to ask questions.  Thanks again!

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LindanHotAir,  Thank you for the information. I obviously want to make a wise choice.   I am going to do some research on your suggestions.  Not sure if I am responding correctly :)

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I have a Sailrite Leatherwork, as well as a Juki LU-563 and Consew 226.  The Leatherwork has a servo and even has a little speed reducer!  The tiny table is so cute, and can fit virtually anywhere.  Does it sew leather?  Sure.  The main limitations I've found is the foot lift is only 3/8", and it can sew about 5/16" of compressed leather.  The foot steppage isn't very high compared to the full industrials.  

But it does have fairly smooth knurled feet so it won't mark leather.  I use it on upholstery leather, where it does just fine.  It wouldn't take many layers of veg tanned leather to be too thick to sew.  

It definitely beats a home sewing machine, and might fit the bill for someone making belts, wallets or luggage tags in a limited space.

Cheers 

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On 6/12/2021 at 6:31 PM, kgg said:

Sailrite are generally expensive but have a good service reputation. This looks like their LS-1 painted green portable walking foot sewing machine placed in a table with a decent servo motor. The maximum thread size it can handle is V92. If I'm not mistaken they were once sold through Tandy stores. These portable machines were designed for sewing sail material not leather. Most portable walking foot sewing machines have very aggressive teeth on their feed dog and pressor foot and have a tendency to leave marks. For about the same money if all you need is a walking foot (feed dog, pressor foot) you could get a Juki DU-1181N ( max thread of V138) for about the same price.

Personally I would look at a triple feed machine where material is feed through by the feed dog, the needle and the pressor foot. I would recommend you look at upholstery class machines like the Juki DNU-1541S ( max thread of V138) for about $1800 or a clone triple feed maybe like a Consew 206RB-5 for about $1500.

Also I would recommend you visit a vendor and test drive a couple of machines with a sample of the materials and the thread you are planning on using. Just like cars there is also the used machine market where you can buy a good used machine at a reduced price.

Buy Once, Cry Once.

kgg

 

I too am looking at Sailrite, but I'm looking at the Leatherworker. That's Sailrite's version of the Tandy Pro Master Stitch. I called Sailrite about the thread 92 max size. The tech said it could stitch well with 138. Also, the dogs and pressor foot are smooth. Their reputation for service and repair parts availability is selling me. That's good enough for me.

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1 hour ago, PlanoMike said:

That's Sailrite's version of the Tandy Pro Master Stitch.

If I am not mistaken the Tandy Pro Master is the Sailrite with a Tandy Label on it. I think you may find using a top thread of V138 and also V138 in the bobbin is going to be difficult. You may have better success using V138 top and V92 in the bottom but this all depends on what type of leather and how thick. The machine will max out on a # 22 needle which is the min. size needed to sew with V138 in soft material. For tough or thick material you need to go up at least a needle size to give a little space so the thread can form a loop properly or you get skipped stitches. It really comes down to what you would like to sew.

If you are liking the Sailrite line of machines I think their Fabricator would be a more overall robust machine. If availability of parts, accessories and build quality are the deciding factors by a Juki.

Buy Once, Cry Once.

kgg

 

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Thank you. Im taking in all suggestions.

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13 minutes ago, PlanoMike said:

Thank you. Im taking in all suggestions.

Take all suggestions with a grain of salt. The best thing when investing a nice chunk of change into a machine is to visit some dealers with your stuff and give a few machines a run. Remember no one machine will do everything and that is why some have more then one machine.

kgg

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I just got mine two weeks ago and couldn't be happier.  I have a Consew 255-RB2 that I could not keep consistent enough to finish a project.  It seemed like every time I would get one thing adjusted something else would go out of whack.  I was beyond frustrated with the Consew, so I bought the Sailrite and it is such a simple machine to make adjustments with.  I know people say there are so many better options out there, but I love mine.

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I have a Sailrite Ultrafeed LSZ-1 (Premium) machine and I love it.  I really didn't think I'd have much need of a zig-zag machine, but I'm surprised at how useful that feature actually is... Even if I'm not making zig-zag stitches, being able to move the needle position left, center or right within the presser foot is a great feature.  It makes it really easy to sew zippers (without changing the foot) and using the presser foot as a guide, just by the needle position I can get my 1/8", 1/4", 3/8" and 1/2" seam allowances without any other guide.  I did change from the rather aggressive sawtooth presser foot and feed dog to their "knurled" set and for leather that's much better.  I generally use v92 thread but Matt Grant (of Sailrite) assured me that the machine would have no problem with v138 thread (top and bottom) as well.  But I haven't yet tried that.  With the current motor, I have no problem sewing through three layers of 7-8 oz veg tan leather with the v92 thread.

With the addition of their new WorkerB servo motor system and speed control the machine will have even more punching power and be even easier to control at slow speed.  I'm in line for one of their earliest shipments of the WorkerB upgrade.

My only nit with the machine is the rather small domestic size bobbin.  I wish it had a bigger bobbin.

And Sailrite's service and support, both pre and post sale are outstanding!  And their tutorial videos are super helpful and very well done.

Oh, a couple of months after buying the LSZ-1, I added the portable folding table they sell for the machine.  I love the combination!

 

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I received my machine, Sailrite Leatherworker w/ Workhorse servo and speed reducer, last Monday. Got it together in three hours and started practicing. The first thing I did was get a stitch length forward and backward set. I set it for 6 SPI which fits the vast majority of my work. After practicing for a few hours and getting use to its operation, I started sewing a satchel bag. The slow speed is real slow, easy to move along the edges sewing the gussets. Flat sewing is a dream, but the gussets weren’t as tough as I thought.

This is my first machine, and is perfect for me. A Semi-pro hobbyist. Easy to set-up, easy to use and maintain. Glad I bought it.

Edited by PlanoMike
And the price was very reasonable at $1,299.

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13 hours ago, PlanoMike said:

I received my machine, Sailrite Leatherworker w/ Workhorse servo and speed reducer, last Monday. Got it together in three hours and started practicing. The first thing I did was get a stitch length forward and backward set. I set it for 6 SPI which fits the vast majority of my work. After practicing for a few hours and getting use to its operation, I started sewing a satchel bag. The slow speed is real slow, easy to move along the edges sewing the gussets. Flat sewing is a dream, but the gussets weren’t as tough as I thought.

This is my first machine, and is perfect for me. A Semi-pro hobbyist. Easy to set-up, easy to use and maintain. Glad I bought it.

Congratulations!  That seems like a terrific machine!  If you like it anywhere near as much as I like my Ultrafeed LSZ-1, you will love it!

We’d love to see a photo of your satchel when you finish it. 
 

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I have owned the Sailrite LS-1 and currently use the Sailrite Fabricator. I am a fan of both machines. I would say if you are going to stick with bags and smaller items you will be more than happy with this machine, but if you think you will stick with it, I would consider the Fabricator because of its larger working space for bigger items. The fabricator package is only $200 more than the leather machine and gives you much more workspace with all the power and slow control. 

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On 9/14/2021 at 3:39 PM, kgg said:

If I am not mistaken the Tandy Pro Master is the Sailrite with a Tandy Label on it. I think you may find using a top thread of V138 and also V138 in the bobbin is going to be difficult. You may have better success using V138 top and V92 in the bottom but this all depends on what type of leather and how thick. The machine will max out on a # 22 needle which is the min. size needed to sew with V138 in soft material. For tough or thick material you need to go up at least a needle size to give a little space so the thread can form a loop properly or you get skipped stitches. It really comes down to what you would like to sew.

If you are liking the Sailrite line of machines I think their Fabricator would be a more overall robust machine. If availability of parts, accessories and build quality are the deciding factors by a Juki.

Buy Once, Cry Once.

kgg

 

Correct, the Tandy Pro Master is made by Sailrite, a lot of folks confuse this thinking that one is a copy of another. They are sailrite machines that they made specifically for Tandy.

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I am several weeks into my new Sailrite Leatherwork machine. I am glad I got it. I’ve also received the left and right zipper feet which I immediately file the saw teeth on the bottoms low and round. Tested on some dark brown 6oz oil tan. Left very light marks that were easily rubbed out. Also, I have very little pressure set on the presser feet. 
I’m using the left only foot with gives me the 3mm space to the right edge of the leather.  This is the typical stitch spacing for wallers. I can put an edge guide tight up where I want it. 
I take off the left foot and use the right foot when I’m stitching guessets. Let’s me get get up very close. 
Additional good news…I have been successfully using #138 bonded nylon tread in both the top and bottom together. On western goods, I like the thicker thread. 
My only complaint is setting the stitch length. I like to use several different lengths depending on the project. I have some marks on the controller, but I still have to play around with it to get it where I want.  
I highly recommend this machine if you on a budget. If money is no object, get the Cobra Class 26.

Edited by PlanoMike
Wasn’t finished

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2 hours ago, PlanoMike said:

My only complaint is setting the stitch length. I like to use several different lengths depending on the project. I have some marks on the controller, but I still have to play around with it to get it where I want.  

I am glad you are enjoying your new machine. Something to keep in mind with the stitch length is it will change slightly (more stitches per inch) as the thickness of material increases.

kgg

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On 10/8/2021 at 7:14 PM, kgg said:

I am glad you are enjoying your new machine. Something to keep in mind with the stitch length is it will change slightly (more stitches per inch) as the thickness of material increases.

kgg

thanks for the tip. I would have never guessed that.

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On 10/8/2021 at 7:14 PM, kgg said:

Something to keep in mind with the stitch length is it will change slightly (more stitches per inch) as the thickness of material increases.

6 hours ago, PlanoMike said:

thanks for the tip. I would have never guessed that.

The reason the stitch length gets shorter as the thickness increases is because of the pendulum effect of the top pivoting needle bar. The swing is always longest at the bottom of a pendulum and decreases as you move up towards the pivot point. Think of the throat plate height as the bottom. As you reach the limit of thickness a machine can negotiate, the needle enters higher up, closer to the pivot point, causing shorter stitches.

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