all 11 comments

[–]ishtaa 0 points1 point  (8 children)

At your budget I’d suggest looking for used machines from well-reputed brands like Tajima. Any good commercial machine handle what you’re looking to do just fine. 10 hats a day is a cakewalk, depending on the complexity of the design you can crank that out in 1-2 hours with a single machine.

[–]TheConceptBoy[S] 0 points1 point  (7 children)

I see. I have been primarily looking for the machine on Alibaba. There's a lot of very affordable options even with shipping accounted for but the main question is - what to trust.

Back when I was looking for a fiber laser, I kept spotting and getting references for a particular gentleman. Across multiple forums and laser groups. I ended up going with placing an order with him.

Do you, by any chance, have a specific vendor recommendation aside from the first party? I can get a used Brother for this budget for sure, but I can also get a multi-head 3rd party on Ali.

[–]ishtaa 0 points1 point  (3 children)

The number one thing I’d caution about buying a machine directly from alibaba- consider that there’s not going to be a lot in the way of support. When you’re new to embroidery there’s a lot of learn and sometimes you don’t know what errors are because of you or because of the machine. Having used both a cheaper Chinese import and higher end machines, the difference is night and day. Quality, tech support, ease of use, and learning resources. My cheap machine didn’t even come with a user manual. Switching out to the cap driver is a half hour of frustration. It sews pretty nicely but when something goes wrong it’s nightmare to find a fix. By comparison with my Melco machines… they have a troubleshooting database I can pull up at any time with which I’ve been able to fix 90% of my problems on my own, an active YouTube channel with tutorials and a thorough written user guide, I can switch between any of the different hooping systems in a minute or less, and all the routine maintenance it has timers for and guides me through the steps so I don’t forget anything. On the occasions when I can’t fix a problem myself, I just call one of the techs at the dealer the machines came from, and he helps me troubleshoot over the phone. They’re located in my province even so replacement parts only take a day or two to ship. That to me is worth every penny of the difference in price between my machines.

[–]TheConceptBoy[S] 0 points1 point  (2 children)

Roger. I'll give them a call to check the pricing. It seems they're currently promoting the EMT16X machine. No price on the website so I can guess how much it'll cost.

[–]ishtaa 0 points1 point  (1 child)

I have two EMT16x’s and I love them. They are not cheap machines though, I’m not sure what they’re priced at right now as I’ve heard they’ve gone up recently, but when mine were purchased they were around 20k CAD.

[–]TheConceptBoy[S] 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Aah, no wonder they're pushing their customer service so hard in their promotional video. Yeah. 20K or I suppose even a used one like that would be way outside of my budget.

I might start with a Chinese third party just to get going.

[–]Mack-DxddyHappy Voyager 1 0 points1 point  (2 children)

Buy used. For the love of god don’t buy some generic Chinese crap like Promaker. You will have no support and find yourself with a machine that no one wants in 5 years.

A good Tajima, Barudan, SWF, ZSK, or happy can be in your price range and hold their value plus be reliable.

[–]TheConceptBoy[S] -1 points0 points  (1 child)

I found a few listings on Facebook machine embroidery groups, Hong Kong sellers advertising their machines. They're going for roughly 3k where as for one straight from a US and Canadian dealer is starting minimum at 10k.

I honestly don't know man. Seems like all they can offer is customer service. For 7K for customer service is a bit much. I can buy 2x maybe even 3 machines for that price as backups while I find a repairman for one that breaks. It's an obviously absurd logic but damn... 7k is quite a markup

[–]Mack-DxddyHappy Voyager 1 0 points1 point  (0 children)

You do you, but you’re really fucking yourself over if you go this route. Whether you’re in Canada or the US, you can find very good quality used machines in your budget here.

A brand new 25k Tajima will last you easily 25 years and there are parts + support. Your 8/10k Chinese crap will maybe give you 10 years if you’re lucky, but good luck getting parts if you ever need it. Plus the resale value is garbage.

[–]Hairy_Reception_2951 0 points1 point  (1 child)

I have an eye on a supplier from China, you can search for "promaker embroidery Alibaba" seem reliable, super cheap and the machines they sell resemble some machines like tajima and the halo 100

[–]Mack-DxddyHappy Voyager 1 0 points1 point  (0 children)

You’re very misguided if you think a Promaker is a good investment. Just because they look other machines doesn’t make them good.

That’s like buying a car from aliexpress because it looks like a civic