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Business Tips Wednesday: Purchasing an Embroidery Machine

28th May 2008

Business Tips Wednesday: Purchasing an Embroidery Machine

The decision about which type of embroidery machine to purchase can be one of the most important decisions you make for your business.  If you choose one that’s too small, you may not be able to keep up the volume you need to produce to make a profit.  If you choose one that’s too big or expensive, you may not be able to generate enough business to afford the machine.  You also need to consider things like reliability,  production capability and ease of use.  No one wants a machine that breaks down constantly or is very hard to make work properly.

Most embroiderers who are planning to go into business will probably want to purchase a commercial embroidery machine.   Commercial machines are made by manufacturers like Tajima, Toyota and Barudan.  These types of machines are generally larger and can handle the demands of high production more easily than smaller machines can.  Many of them can also run multiple garments at the same time, depending of course, on the number of heads the machine has. 

Embroidery machines also come with a variety of features which can make your jobs run faster and more easily.  Computerized machines can store designs and offer a wide array of features.  There are a wide variety of hoop sizes and styles which can be used to hoop various garments.  Some machines can be hooked to scanner or your home computer so you can create and upload your own designs. 

The main thing you need to know before purchasing a machine is what it is you want to do with that machine.  Simply answering “embroidery” is too vague.  Do you want to embroider caps or capes?  Do you think you’ll do a lot of very small items like patches, or do you imagine most of your embroidery will be on golf shirts?  How you think most of your jobs will be a few dozen pieces or do you expect to be doing jobs that require embroidery on thousands of garments?  The answers to these sorts of questions will help you determine which machine is right for your business.

Once you’ve figured out what sort of machine you want, it might be wise to investigate used machines.  Buying a quality used machine is a great way to save money when you are just starting out.  There are a variety of places where used machines can be found.  The sites listed below are just a few of the possibilities.

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