The value on this machine can’t be beat and I HIGHLY recommend it. You get 4 alphabet fonts, both upper and lower, plus tons and tons of decorative and useful utility stitches, mirror imaging, not to mention the needle cutter which is next to impossible to find on a machine at this price point. The 9960 comes with just about every foot you’ll need and also an extension table. Plus there are two LED lights that shine down pretty well on your work and the bed of the machine.
The stitch quality on this machine is really quite good and I have no complaints there. In my opinion, it was just as good as higher end machines I have sewn on. Nicely balanced, even and no skipped stitches or loops. I have sewn/tested just about every pattern on here and they all turn out great.
The machine has auto-tension which I think works some of the time. But then again, I’m someone that likes to adjust my tension manually and found myself having to do that for every stitch more often than not. Keep in mind, though, that fabric, thread and needle always play a part and it’s always a good idea to play around with different combinations before judging stitch quality.
The alphabet fonts stitched out quite nicely. They’re not large, but perfect for cuffs or pockets. Plus, I was pretty impressed that both upper and lower case letters were available for the price on this machine. Usually don’t see that until higher end machines.
The motor is EXTREMELY quiet and very, very smooth. I don’t think anyone would complain about this part. It didn’t make any jamming noises and certainly didn’t slow down over heavy seems. One PRETTY IMPRESSIVE feature I found out about and it certainly wasn’t touted that much is the box feed system and 7-point feed dogs. The box feed is something I believe is found on Juki’s and really helps with the machine’s even feeding performance. Plus, having a 7-point feed dog system also helps.
The LCD screen is EXTREMELY user friendly and I had no problem getting accustomed to it at all. Very large readout and you don’t have to squint to see the settings.
Ultimately, I chose to return the machine ONLY because I decided to get a combination sewing/embroidery machine. But I sewed on this solidly for 2 months and was very, very pleased. I would definitely recommend this for the new sewer or the advanced one. It really is a great machine!
I knew the Singer wasn’t going to come close to the Viking in many areas BUT for the price of $330 this machine has pleasantly surprised me. It sews very smoothly and straight. It has a nice sound when sewing, not whiny or clunky at all. It stops on a dime, exactly where you want it to. I’ve stitched out all the stitches and buttonholes, all are great. Most of the decorative stitches can be altered in length/width but there are a few that cannot be changed.
I test sewed a variety of fabrics such as fleece, lightweight wool, cotton knit, stretch velvet and even silk, the Stylist sewed them all well. I did change to the proper size needle and threads for the different fabrics before testing though. I think this is where a lot of people get into trouble with their machines – not using the proper needles/thread to match the fabric being sewn on. You generally will not get good results by using a cotton thread on thick poly fleece with a size 10 needle and 2.0 stitch length! Many will blame the machine for the poor stitches when it is just the thread/needle/stitch combo that is all that is wrong. Sorry for the preaching here! =0)
I like that you can move the needle left or right in tiny increments to get the seam just where it needs to be. Threading and bobbin winding are easy, the threader is just OK as it isn’t as precise as some I’ve used, it does work but you have to work at it to make it work! The thread cutter was a very important feature for me, I have gotten so use to the one on my Viking that I cannot do without now. I thought a machine at this price to have a cutter was incredible! I’m finding the cutter can be a bit off and not cut well every time it’s used. I’ve noticed this happens only if the needle is to the farthest right of center such as when I have it 1/4 inch from the side of the foot for piecing quilt blocks. It will cut the top thread but not the bottom. When the needle is moved back to center or more to the left positions the cutter cuts both threads. I think maybe all it needs is a slight adjustment. However, when you purchase a sewing machine online versus at an ‘in person’ dealer, there is no one to service these kinds of issues, unless of course you have a Singer authorized service center nearby, the closest to me is a 2 1/2 hr drive.
I have tried free motion quilting and the machine performed well, even with nylon thread. I did not use the ‘darning’ foot that came with the machine as I felt it inferior (it is the only one of the feet that I felt this way about, all the others are fine). I used the open eye free motion foot from my Viking instead, since they are both low shank machines it fit. The needle down feature is wonderful for FMQing!
I love the slide on table that came with the machine, nice to have if I take the machine to classes. I will use the machine in a table with an insert when at home.
The Quantum has wonderful features such as the red/green light that lets you know the whether the presser foot is up/down. The machine will not sew when the foot is up, a great safety feature if you’re like me and doesn’t turn the machine off when changing needles! I also like the programmable ‘tie off’ stitch, no need to remember, the machine remembers for you.
The machine came with a hard case cover, a package of extra types of feet and the slide on table. Last, this is a big machine with a nice substantial feel, not dinky and lightweight like some similar priced machines I’ve tried, and it is nice looking too. The only thing lacking with the Stylist is a knee lever presser foot lifter, I would have gladly paid more money for that one feature! Overall I am very happy with this machine and would recommend it to anyone.
Singer Quantum Stylist 9960 Sewing Machine