Monday 20 April 2020

The Handiquilter Capri

Finally arrived and set up in her spot (actually had to clean up before we even could set's been so long that the whole area was incredibly messy)
Look at this space! I did order both extensions this time, as last time I only had one for a while, however purchased the second one for the Sweet 16 last year. It is so much easier with two extensions. The machine is longer by 2in, hence, the table is bigger and they also added additional width to the extensions, making this very comfortable indeed. The table is 36in x 32in and the extensions are another 18in wide each. It's huge! The new table is very slick, so you do not need an overlay. Bit worried about scratches though, particularly with the rulers if you were to lay them down with the Handigrip side on the table. So I stuck my Supreme Slider to the table on the left because that is where my rulers usually end up. While I am used to always flipping them around when I put them down, I thought, better safe than sorry.

Apart from being bigger, these are the exciting new features
- stitch regulation (optical sensors inside the table insert); both Cruise and Precision are available
- light in the bobbin area, very handy indeed (you can also access the bobbin area from the top by sliding the insert out slightly)
- improved lighting on the top, in fact, it is super bright
- stitching speed increased to 2200 stitches per minute (not so relevant for me as I still stitch very slowly)
- new table set can lift the machine up to standing height
- USB port for updates and additional USB port on the other side that could be used to connect the new laser light for example.
- more basting options (very excited about this...I love the basting function in general)

Before I got into stitching I covered my stitch plate...maybe a bit funny, but I was really used to the overlay of the Sweet 16 and the solid feel around the needle plate area. All of a sudden with this machine I could feel the cutout of the insert table. So, I had an old and crusty Supreme Slider and cut out some holes for the sensors and placed this over the needle plate area. Not as solid as the overlay but visually it does the trick for me and the quilt does not rub against the sides of the cut out of the table.
The first thing I noticed with this machine was that it is much quieter in Manual mode than my Sweet 16 was.  As I am used to the machine by now, Manual was just like it was before...just lovely, particularly as I had not had a machine for a while. I then switched over to Regulated...what a hoot! Definitely louder! At first I thought there was something wrong. I switched it onto Cruise first, where the needle walks at a pre-determined speed when you depress the foot pedal. Somehow my brain took a minute to realise that I actually have to move the fabric. It was the weirdest feeling. It was predictably very jerky and uncomfortable, as if I was working against the machine. Precision mode was even press the foot control down and nothing happens until you move the fabric. Again I felt that there was a fair bit of resistance for the machine to get going. The machine has a start/stop button, so I used that which helped a lot as I could just concentrate for a moment on moving the fabric with my hands and get a feel for the speed. This is going to take a moment to get used to.
The next day then I sat down and did some concentrated exploration of the Regulated mode.
I used Cruise for some of the ruler work and must say...I love this! My stitching looks so much better with that. Tried all sorts of rulers and found that I was beginning to get very comfortable with that mode. Precision will take a bit longer, I reckon, but has its place in ruler work as you would not have the 'jogging' stitches in between, but for now I could only use that for straight lines from point to point. I also did some feathers in Cruise...not perfect, but heaps better than the day before. Tried other smaller designs in Cruise, but found this difficult at this stage, as I don't seem to have found my rhythm with that as yet. Not bothered though, as it will come with more practice. Definitely a lot of fun and the stitch regulation certainly delivers.

One happy quilter over here !


1 comment:

  1. Yay -- so glad that you finally got your new machine and that she's living up to all of your expectations!


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