Welcome, everyone. I’ve got some very exciting news today. I received a HUGE box from Husqvarna Viking. What’s in the box? Oh – I’m so excited – let’s check it out.
Oh my – it’s the brand new Husqvarna Viking Epic 980Q. Wow – that box is big! I wonder what the sewing machine looks like. Open it! Open it!
Oh my – this is really, really exciting. I don’t even know where to start with all the features.
The Epic 980Q is strictly a sewing and quilting machine, no embroidery which is great if someone simply wants an awesome sewing machine.
Here are the first things that came to mind when I turned it on. Oh yes – I turned it on right away.
- Huge space under the arm of the sewing machine. Awesome for quilting quilts.
- Bright lights – those lights are so bright, there’s no danger of not seeing what you’re working on.
- Space for two cones of thread on top.
- The thread holder as part of the thread path. I love that threading system.
- Large screen – what’s hidden within that interactive touchscreen?
- Similar control panel to other Husqvarna Viking sewing machine models, so no new learning curve.
- An automatic needle threader.
- It’s heavy – this is not the sewing machine that you’ll take to retreat or sewing classes.
- The flip-up lid is relatively small and out of the way.
I couldn’t hold myself back. I wanted to test it out right away! I got some bobbins and wound them. Look at the cool bobbin winder on the side of the Epic 980Q. It’s so cool and funky – it’s almost a shame that it’s hidden on the side of the sewing machine. There’s a separate motor so you can wind bobbins while you keep sewing. I know that sounds weird, but I was in such a deadline mode that I actually did that!
When you engage the bobbin winder, you get a pop-up message on the screen that allows you to change the speed. This is great because if you’re winding invisible thread, you don’t want to wind that at full speed. Winding invisible thread at full speed will either break the bobbin or compress the bobbin so much, that you won’t be able to get it off the bobbin winder.
After loading one bobbin into the bobbin case, I placed the other four bobbins in the accessory case at the front of the sewing machine. I’m determined to keep my sewing area tidy and stop losing things or having them drop on the floor. This is very handily located right at the front of the sewing machine. It’s also a storage area for the presser feet.
I can’t get over the amount of space there is on the bed of the sewing machine. It’s huge – I mean really, really big. I measured it. There are over 12″ of space to the right of the needle. Imagine when you need to quilt a big quilt? Or your applique is in the middle of a large piece of fabric? This is going to make things very easy.
Even when piecing, this space is very much appreciated. I put some of my pieces in that space which helped to keep them organized. I love having this much space and I must say that when I went to work on my smaller sewing machine, the difference in size was very noticeable.
I should mention that there were a few times that I actually found that light to be a bit too intense. Depends on how sensitive your eyes are to light. Some days, I’m good and some days, not so good. Guess what? You can dim those lights! That’s awesome. On the days when I’m having light sensitivity issues, I can reduce the brightness and on good days, I can leave them at full power.
This little detail means a lot to me and shows that someone was thinking of the end-user when they put this sewing machine together.
But what’s inside that interactive touchscreen? Oh – there’s so much, I don’t even know where to begin.
Below is a screenshot – just to give you an idea of some of the features. This sewing machine hooks up to the internet, and despite my technological incompetence, it was a snap to connect. That allows me to save files on the mySewnet Cloud and I can get updates without having to use a USB stick.
The entire User’s Guide is inside the sewing machine. You can view it like a hard copy in the form of chapters or you can use the search function to find what you’re looking for. I’m a big advocate of reading the User’s Guide. I’ve learned so much in the past from reading the guides. I haven’t had a chance to read this entire guide yet. There’s so much!
There’s a JoyOS advisor. You know the saying, knowledge is power. Well, if there’s some sewing technique that you’re not familiar with, you’ll find it in the sewing advisor.
Not only are there sewing techniques like inserting zippers (4 different ways), collars, dimensional stitches, etc, but there’s a section on quilting techniques. If you’re new to quilting, this is an amazing feature. The Knowledge Center provides information on stabilizers (very important to get the correct stabilizer to make the job simple) and there’s also a QuickStart guide.
Below is the list of quilting techniques that are included in the JoyOS advisor.
The interaction instructions for each of the topics may appear on more than one screen depending on how you have the JoyOS advisor screen configured.
In this screenshot, you can see that I have five choices: I can have the information on the bottom of the screen, on the top, on the left or the right or full screen. Very flexible depending on how much of the screen you need to see versus reading the instructions.
In addition, you can let the JoyOS advisor do all the work when setting up for different types of sewing. You simply choose the type and weight of fabric that you’re sewing with and what technique you’ll be doing and the sewing machine will select the stitch, stitch length and width for you. Of course, everything can be overridden if you prefer.
It all sounds complicated, but it’s not. I basically turned on the Epic 980Q, wound those bobbins, and started sewing. The only thing I changed was the stitch length. As a quilter, I like to use a 2.0 stitch length, not 2.5 which is a normal setting for sewing garments.
There’s so much to talk about with this machine, I thought I’d break it down and look at the features that are important to a quilter. I know there’s a lot of cross-over in the garment sewing world and the quilting world and if I have time, I’ll include a few other things as well.
Tomorrow, we’re going to look at some tips on piecing and why the Husqvarna Viking Epic 980Q makes a great machine for piecing.
I have to go sew something!
Have a great day!
This is part 1 of 5 in this series.
Go to part 2: 6 tips for successful piecing
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