Have you been taking up large sewing projects lately? Is your current sewing machine not able to take the load anymore?
A home/ domestic sewing machine can be versatile and useful. But it has its limitations. The motor power, the stitching speed, and the build of the machine are going to be different. Also, you cannot use the domestic machine for more than 5 hours at a time.
But with an increasing workload, you cannot afford to have such restrictions bind you. What you need is a bigger, better, and commercial sewing machine that is capable of being a workhorse throughout the day.
Whether you work from home, have a small office/ boutique, or run a small to medium enterprise, and industrial heavy-duty sewing machine is what you need.
But which one should you buy? Which brand and which model is the best for your requirements? Which factors should you consider before making a decision?
We have provided answers to all the above questions and more. This blog has a list of the top 5 best commercial sewing machines in the market, their features, and benefits. You will also find a detailed buying guide with factors you need to keep in mind while selecting a commercial/ industrial sewing machine.
Shall we get started without further delay?
Table of Contents
The Best Commercial Sewing Machines For The Money
#1 Brother PQ1500SL Sewing and Quilting Machine - EDITOR'S CHOICE
The first commercial sewing machine on the list is from none other than Brother. It is a commercial, heavy-duty sewing and quilting machine that is great for working on heavy projects and thicker fabrics. It has been promoted as a dream machine for quilters, and we have to agree with it. One look at the unit will assure you that it is reliable and trustworthy. No wonder the brand offers a 25-year limited warranty. It is a powerful sewing machine and comes with a lot of interesting features and accessories. Let’s check them in detail.
Features & Benefits
Weighing almost 30 pounds, this isn’t a sewing machine you want to move around often (at least not without help from others). The extra-long table is perfect for working on large quilting projects. The unit is made of metal and is very sturdy. You can run it at the top speed for long hours. It doesn’t vibrate or shake.
The top speed of the machine is 1500 SPM. Imagine running at that speed and still delivering perfect stitches every time. That’s how efficient this model is. There will be no jamming, puckering, or jerks to annoy you. You can work and work without worry.
Users have hardly complained about the performance of PQ1500SL. That’s because it doesn’t give us a chance to point out issues. Of course, the machine is not perfect. But the advantages outweigh the troubles by a great margin.
You can adjust the stitch length from 1mm to 7mm. The dial is right on the side. You can also Mae changes to the position of the needle by turning a hand-wheel a little. The knee lifter helps you control the thread tension as you work. There is no need to take your hands off the material. The model doesn’t have an automatic needle threader, but it does have an automated thread cutter/ trimmer.
Ease of Use
Commercial models usually aren’t for beginners, and this model is no exception. The operations are hard. If you don’t have prior experience of using a sewing machine, it’ll be hard to learn. The settings aren’t tough or complex. But they are not easy. You have to read the manual thoroughly and also go by trial and error in matching the settings with the fabrics.
That said, if you are a professional, you’ll be using the machine in no time at all. Be it the free arm quilting or stitching through thick materials like denim, you will love how good this machine is in delivering the results. Just take time to understand the settings, and you are good to go.
#2 JUKI DDL-8700-Servo Industrial Straight Stitch Sewing Machine - Best Noise-free Model
How can we not have a Juki model when talking about commercial sewing machines? This is a lockstitch machine that works great for fabrics with light to medium thickness. It is durable and not as expensive as the high-end industrial models in the market. But if you are used to getting bulk orders, this model will be perfect for you. Since the model has a servo motor, it is relatively noiseless. In fact, we can call this a noise-free model as it hardly generates any sound. That’s a huge relief when you want to work for long hours at a stretch, right?
Features & Benefits
The machine is made of aluminum. Though it weighs 28 pounds, the unit comes fully assembled. We mean to say that it comes fitted to the table. That makes the whole thing weigh about 125 pounds (if not more). Now, that’s quite heavy, isn’t it? We suggest you have someone ready to help you in carrying it to the desired location.
Of course, getting a fully assembled model means that you can start using it immediately. Moreover, this model has a self-lubricating system. Yep. This is a maintenance-free model. Wonderful, right?
From apparel to interior fabrics (curtains, etc.), this machine can sew most fabrics. Well, it can’t stitch upholstery, but it can handle leather once in a while. The biggest plus point of this model is the stitching speed. Can you take a guess? The machine runs at 5500 stitches per minute. Why do you think we’ve been calling it a bulk producer?
You can still adjust the stitch length and width and also the stitching speed. You don’t have to touch the highest always, right? You can adjust it to a more convenient speed. Do you know that DDL-8700 is also preferred by fashion schools? The machines are durable enough to last as batches of students learn and practice on them.
Ease of Use
From tailors to fashion designers to dressmakers, many people love using this model. It gives them the required speed and stitching quality to complete the projects on time. Be it a shirt, jacket, skirts, jeans, or trousers, the machine can handle them all. It does have only the straight stitch, though. You can use different stitch designs.
A professional is going to be more comfortable using this machine. That said, beginners can learn the craft on this one and gain confidence. The machine comes with a set of 10 needles of varying thickness so that you can use them based on the type of fabric. It also comes with an array of useful accessories.
#3 JUKI TL-2000Qi Sewing and Quilting Machine - Best for Quilting
We have another model from Juki on our list. This one is a sewing and quilting machine that is great to work on home décor projects. It is one of the best computerized commercial heavy-duty sewing machines in the market. Though it is not as versatile as some of the other models, this machine is perfect for people who stitch and sell apparel and quilts every day. The brand offers a 5-year limited warranty. But you can be assured that the machine is sturdy and durable to last for a long time.
Features & Benefits
Made of aluminum, the unit weighs around 37 pounds. It is a heavy machine, and it is easier to place it in a fixed location. There are absolutely no plastic parts. The extension table is one of the highlights of this model. You can get a total work area of up to 23 inches. Quilters know how important it is to have a large work area, isn’t it?
It also has an LCD display screen and LED lights. Apart from the standard presser foot, the machine comes with a 1/5-inch quilting foot and an even feed foot. This is a true quilting machine for professionals.
Since it is a computerized model, the machine has an automatic needle threader and trimmer (cutter). But trying to figure these out can be a bit tough. That’s because the needle threader works a bit differently compared to other models. Also, to use the trimmer, you’ll have to move your foot back on the foot pedal. The trimmer will do its job even if you accidentally rock your foot. It’ll take a while to get used to this.
The knee lever allows you to control the presser foot without using your hands. There is also a lever to control the up and down movements of the needle. And with a stitching speed of 1500 SPM, this is a wise investment choice.
Ease of Use
Since the model is aimed at professionals, you shouldn’t have much issue with using this one. The stitch quality is wonderful, even if there is only one built-in stitch design. The machine has low vibrations even when running at the highest speed. It’s suitable for continuous usage. However, this one needs regular maintenance. You’ll have to oil it with every use so that it runs smoothly.
#4 Janome HD3000 Heavy Duty Sewing Machine - Best for Beginners
Janome is a famous brand in the market. HD3000 is promoted as a heavy-duty model that can be used by both beginners and professionals. This is one of those few commercial sewing machines that newbies can learn and use with confidence. It has 21 built-in stitches for those who like to experiment with stitch designs. Another attractive feature of this model is the number of accessories that accompany the unit.
Features & Benefits
The machine is made of aluminum and is sturdy when running at the highest speed. It weighs about 23 pounds and looks compact. The machine has a slot to store the accessories. You won’t lose or misplace them, especially the bobbins and presser feet. The free arm is useful to work on cuffs and sleeves.
There is a dial on the side to change the stitch designs. However, it is not easy to change stitch designs. You’ll need some practice and check the designs printed on the unit to ensure that you picked the right one. There is no LCD screen, so you’ll have to be alert.
This model has a stitching speed of 860 SPM, which is neither too less nor too high. It works for both beginners and professionals, as we’ve mentioned above. There are a built-in needle threader and a thread cutter. It also has an easy bobbin winding system. Moreover, the bobbin is jam-resistant. It has a transparent bobbin case so that you can track how much thread is left on the bobbin.
The model has a 1.0 amp motor that makes it easy to stitch through thick fabrics like canvas. You can stitch through layers of denim without any effort. That said, this machine is not suitable for leather. It doesn’t give the kind of results you want.
Ease of Use
It is relatively easy to use this machine. The reverse stitch lever helps to reinforce the stitches. Also, the instruction manual is clear. This is a good investment for a mid-range budget. Though HD3000 is expensive than some other brands, it is worth the money.
The machine comes with 7 presser feet, bobbins, extra needles, and a sturdy hard case that makes it easy to transport the machine. Though not a lightweight model, this machine is still portable.
#5 SINGER Quantum Stylist 9985 Computerized Sewing Machine - Best Versatile Machine Within Budget
Quantum Stylist 9985 is a versatile computerized model that is useful for beginners and professionals. It has a lot of accessories and features. At times, beginners might feel a bit overwhelmed due to the number of options they can choose from. The 960 built-in stitches (and monogramming letters) are both an advantage and a disadvantage. The brand offers a 25-year limited warranty on the unit.
Features & Benefits
Made of metal, this is quite a sturdy and durable sewing machine. It weighs about 20 pounds is a serious commercial sewing machine that can also be used for monogramming and quilting. However, the quilting quality is not as good as the sewing quality. But it does stitch through certain thick fabrics.
The needle plate is made of stainless steel. The stitching speed is 850 SPM. Even when you hit the highest speed, the machine is smooth and silent. It will not vibrate or produce noise. You can pick any stitch design or lettering you want through the LCD touchscreen.
The 960 built-in stitches are classified as follows- 919 decorative stitches, 21 stretches, 13 buttonholes, and 10 basic stitches.
The machine has an automatic needle threader and a drop-in bobbin. The bobbin compartment is under the needle plate. The instruction manual is detailed and clearly explains how to operate the machine.
While there are no plastic components that will easily break, some users did complain about malfunctions. You’ll have to send the machine to the authorized service center to get it repaired. It’s better if you check for nearby service centers so that you don’t have to spend extra money on shipping the machine.
Ease of Use
Beginners can easily use the machine if they follow the instruction manual. The only confusion that might arise would be with the built-in stitches. The sewing machine is suitable for monogramming and delivers good quality projects. However, we cannot say the same about quilting. It could have been better.
The model comes with an automatic thread trimmer (cutter). All you need to do is press a button. There’s no need to pick up the scissors every time. The machine comes with 13 presser feet and a bunch of other useful accessories. There is also a foot control in case you want to operate it manually. The hard case is not as strong, so be careful with it.
Best Commercial Sewing Machine Buying Guide
That was quite a range of commercial sewing machines, isn’t it? Let us go through the factors that play an important role in deciding whether a sewing machine is suitable for your needs or not.
We usually see two types of motors for sewing machines. One is the clutch motor, and another is the servo motor. The clutch model has more power, is noisy, and perfect for stitching through heavy materials such as leather, canvas, rexine, etc. The servo motor is meant for fabrics that are not too thick. The motor is obviously less powerful. It doesn’t make as much noise either. Also, with a servo motor, you can adjust the stitching speed as per your convenience.
The biggest advantage of using a commercial sewing machine is the stitching speed. While 600 SPM might be enough for home use, it is not going to help get the work done on time in a boutique. Some commercial machines have a speed of 850 SPM, which is decent. But if you want the best, you will need a model with 1500 SPM. It works like a superfast horse intent on winning the race.
There isn’t much we can do about noisy sewing machines. As mentioned in the previous point, clutch motors generate a lot of noise. That said, some models have been designed to reduce the noise or have noise-cancellation features that minimize the disturbance and allow you to work for long hours.
We hardly see mechanical sewing machines anymore. Electrical models are famous because they are easy to use. But what about your power bill? Sewing machines consume a lot of power, and using one daily for long hours can seriously affect your electricity bill. Here’s what you can do. Check models that are listed as eco-friendly or power savers. These sewing machines consume less power than the regular ones and will help in keeping the electricity bill under control.
Type of Sewing Bed
A bed is the work surface of the sewing machine. There are three types of sewing beds: post-bed, cylinder-bed, and flat-bed.
A post-bed has a raised surface that is higher than the actual work area. This allows you to concentrate on the minute details. Sewing machines used for projects with curves (shoes, bags, etc.) have post-beds. The cylinder-beds are rounded so that the fabric moves easily when working on areas like the cuffs. A flat-bed is just the regular domestic sewing machine with an extra work area for industrial use.
Feeding here refers to how the fabric is fed to the sewing machine for stitching. The industrial/ commercial models have different feeding systems, unlike the domestic models that have drop feed. There are manual feeds, free-motion feeds (used for quilting and embroidery), drop feeds with feed dogs under the plate, differential feed (has dual feed dogs under the plate), and top feed.
Commercial sewing machines need more maintenance. They have to be cared for regularly so that they deliver consistent results day in and day out. Make sure to oil the machine and keep the parts lubricated. If it feels like too much work, you can choose a machine that self-lubricates. However, it is better if you care for the sewing machine and its components rather than simply use it and leave it aside.
Size of the Machine
Some commercial machines are big and heavy. Some come with extra-large tables and legs. If you wish to buy one of those, you will need to make sure that you have enough space wherever you want to place it. Not all commercial sewing machines are easily portable. It would be better if you decided on the location first and then picked a machine.
Extra Features and Accessories
While some features are common for all models, others have additional ones that can be useful or just serve as customer attraction tools. It’s the same with accessories. When talking about these two aspects, the best thing would be to see whether the model you shortlisted has all the features you want or not.
Warranty is essential for every product. A sewing machine is meant to last for a few years, if not for a lifetime. Most brands offer a limited warranty on the long term and a full warranty on the short term. You can compare the durations and also check which components are covered and which are not. In case of any queries or questions, it would be wise to contact the customer care of the brand and get authentic information from them.
Wrap Up: Our Choice
Which model do you think you should buy? Are you still not sure? In that case, we would recommend investing in Brother PQ1500SL Sewing and Quilting Machine. It is a wonderful commercial sewing machine with lots of benefits and hardly any disadvantages.
We already saw the features of the model in detail, isn’t it? We know it is trustworthy, steady, durable, and reliable for commercial use.
Brother PQ1500SL Sewing and Quilting Machine is the best commercial sewing machine and is totally worth the price.