Tuesday, August 8, 2017

My New Longarm Quilting Machine

Our fast turn-around trip to Tehachapi, CA. Monday and Tuesday has resulted in the transportation of my almost new Prodigy quilting machine to it's new home in Phoenix.
The trip involved two days of nine hours each on the road, very tiring in itself. Add in dismantling of the set up and careful packing and loading onto the rented trailer. It took about two hours to tear down the machine and table Monday evening and another hour and a half to load it up for transit next morning, not bad overall!
The friendly couple from whom I purchased this machine were hospitable and helpful, the previous owner a brilliant quilter, Molly Hamilton McNally and her husband could not have been kinder.
Her we are in the process of dismantling the machine in Molly's beautiful studio in the hills about an hour north of Los Angeles. More about this talented lady in another post.
They have two small dogs and as Molly said "I am a dog person" we were very thankful since we had our little Aussie Terrier with us and she was allowed to wander a bit on their spacious property after being in the truck all day. We spent the night at the pet friendly La Quinta in Tehachapi and then loaded up next morning for the trip home.
The machine head was strapped into the back seat of the Avalanche
but table and components went on the trailer.
It was an uneventful drive if you discount the horrible CA. Traffic. I could not live there, truly, it is crazy and we went nowhere near Los Angeles or any other major city. Nine hours each way for what would be less than seven with reasonable traffic.
Introducing the Prodigy to its new environment was relatively easy compared to the relocation of the A-1 with its one piece 14 ft. table weighing over 300 lbs!
Prodigy breaks down into manageable pieces, the rear rail is the heaviest, housing all the mechanics for the table processes and was too heavy for me to help up the stairs. We called on a friend for assistance meanwhile it sat overnight in the garage.
 We took some pics that helped in rebuilding the set up, and all went pretty smoothly. DH did a stellar job all kudos to him and my friend Gale a long time Prodigy owner and heirloom quilter was also helpful Via iPhone.
Almost there, only a few more pieces to attach including the third pole and batting access and I will be able to test Prodigy. 
 We discovered in the process that I appear to have a faulty encoder for the stitch regulator which should be simply replaced. We have spoken with the design engineer of this machine, we can have no better guide and he has the encoder and will mail it to me. I also discovered that I had equipment belonging to Molly's Innova and in turn the hopping feet for Prodigy had been left behind in her studio so we exchanged these by mail!
Otherwise I made a few minor adjustments and Prodigy is running nicely in manual mode, and with a new encoder will run just as well in auto! I hope we are happy together in the new space, and there are no adjustment issues from sunny California to the Valley of The Sun!
There will be a few adjustments for me with this new machine after ten years with A-1,  and much like adjusting to a new automobile I will soon embrace the benefits. I will miss the extra two feet of the 14 ft. table which allowed plenty of room for "parking" the machine head for maintenance and to keep a small practice piece on the side for testing tension etc. But there are other conveniences that I will enjoy and adjust to the shorter 12 ft. table quickly I expect.


Quilty Constance said...

WOW! That setup looks great! I'm jealous.

Lynette said...

oooo - a new machine! I am still in the honeymoon phase with my new longarm, getting more and more acquainted and comfortable with it each week. That looks like a really wonderful room to be working in!

giraffe said...

Hi, I know you will LOVE your Prodigy. In my mind, it is the best machine on the market. The Stitch Regulator is fabulous. Charlie made the best professional machine and I know you wlll agree, once you start to use it. There is a Yahoo Prodigy Group that you can join and the quilters there will answer any questions you might have. Good luck!!! Happy Quilting!!! Carol