*We may receive a small commission on any products purchased through links on this page at no additional cost to you.

Last Updated: January 4, 2020

Best heavy duty sewing machine

BEST VALUE

A photo ofJuki TL2000Qi against white background
4.9/5

EDITOR'S PICK

S photo of Janome DC2013 against white background
4.8/5

BUDGET CHOICE

product shot Singer Heavy Duty 4423
4.6/5

Whether you’re a beginner or an advanced sewer, I will be covering in this article the best heavy duty sewing machine for both everyday projects and heavy fabric projects. While just about every household has a sewing machine of some kind, a heavy duty sewing machine allows for more advanced sewing and quilting projects that the average sewing machine is incapable of. The best heavy duty sewing machine, will be dependable, and versatile. Although the average person may think a heavy duty sewing machine is overkill for their needs, I believe it’s an essential machine for any household due to their extreme versatility and uses.

Product Quick Compare

product shot Singer Heavy Duty 4423

Singer 4423

4.6/5

4.6 / 5

A photo of Janome HD3000 against white background

Janome HD3000

4.2/5

4.2 / 5

S photo of Janome DC2013 against white background

Janome DC2013

4.8/5

4.8 / 5

A photo of Janome HD1000 against white background

Janome HD1000

4/5

4 / 5

Janome DC1050

4.2/5

4.2 / 5

A photo ofJuki TL2000Qi against white background

Juki TL-2000qi

4.9/5

4  / 5

A photo of Brother PQ1500SL against white wall

Brother PQ1500SL

4/5

4  / 5

A photo of Brother ST371HD against white wall

Brother ST371HD

4.5/5

4.5 / 5

product shot Singer Heavy Duty 4423

1. Singer 4423

Best machine on a budget
Our Rating: 4.6 / 5
Brand: Singer
SPM: 1100
Type: mechanical
Model: 4423

Like most of the heavy duty sewing machines I’ll be discussing, the Singer 4423 has an excellent brand reputation. Established in 1851, Singer is a well-known American company who has been providing quality sewing machines for over 150 years now. I’ve used Singer sewing machines in the past and they are usually a good experience, especially since they tend to be on the more affordable end while still being of high quality.

The Singer 4423 does not disappoint. It boasts high speed, 1100 stitches per minute, and has a variety of 23 built- in stitches for a small price of $125. The singer 4423 heavy duty sewing machine has a powerful motor which really sets it apart in my mind from some of its competitors. I had no issues with sewing a pair of denim jeans or while working on a quilt project I’ve been doing on the side. The stitch rate was incredible for my more demanding fabrics and projects. The 23 built-in stitches includes 6 Basic Stitches, 4 Stretch Stitches, 12 Decorative Stitches, 1 Buttonhole making this a nice kit for a lot of projects, especially fashion related. Some of you may be familiar with the Singer 4411 or coming across it in your research on the Singer 4423. The main difference between the Singer 4411 and the Singer 4423, is the available variety of built-in stitches. The Singer 4411 only has 11 built-in stitches which is, for me, too little so I find the Singer 4423 better to invest in personally. The 11 built-in stitches for the older 4411 model only includes 6 Basic Stitches, 4 Decorative Stitches and 1 auto 4-step buttonhole.

An interesting extra feature I really liked was the SINGER Sewing Assistance App that comes with the Singer 4423 heavy duty sewing machine. This app includes new sewing techniques, frequently asked questions about your machine, and helpful tutorials for beginners. Available to download from both Google Play Store and iTunes, you can have the sewing assistance you need any time, anywhere and improve your ability to sew. The Singer 4423 also comes with an assortment of accessories on Amazon that includes an all-purpose walking foot, zipper foot pedal, buttonhole foot, button sewing walking foot, seam ripper / lint brush, quilting guide, needles, bobbins, screwdriver, auxiliary spool pin, spool pin felt, and a soft-sided dust cover.

Another great aspect of this heavy-duty sewing machine is the durable metal frame. Although this heavy duty metal frame makes this sewing machine on the heavy side for weight, putting it at about 17 pounds in total, I didn’t find the sewing machine to be overly bulky or a pain to manage physically. The metal frame for this powerful sewing machine also helps maintain skip-free sewing and ensures years of use. Although the durability of the machine should keep you from having to use it, I also like that this sewing machine comes with a 25 year warranty which puts my mind at ease.

I did notice some bobbin jamming with this machine which was a bit annoying at times. However, it wasn’t significant enough of a problem to deter myself of others from using this heavy duty sewing machine due to its overall high functioning features and price point. For those still learning or lucky enough to not experience this yet, bobbin jamming is usually caused by the feed dog. Feed dogs are located underneath the foot of a sewing machine and their job is to pull the fabric through the needle when making stitches. A feed dog can get jammed by debris causing the mechanism not to move. A feature I felt was missing was a light of some kind. Not all sewing machines include them but I find it to be one of the best extra features for a sewing machine as it helps so much when needing to see and work on intricate stitching. Despite these two flaws, I really enjoyed using this machine and without a doubt, the Singer 4423 heavy duty sewing machine is my top pick for the best heavy duty sewing machine on a budget.

What I liked

  • High speed- 1100 stitches per minute
  • 23 built-in stitches
  • Included accessories and app
  • The price is excellent
  • Being lightweight and small makes the 1304 very portable

What I didn't like

  • No light is included
  • The machine tends to jam at the bobbin quite often

Editor's Rating: 4.6 / 5

4.6/5
A photo of Janome HD3000 against white background

2. Janome HD3000

Best machine for industrial use
Our Rating: 4.2 / 5
Brand: Janome
SPM: 860
Type: serger
Model: HD300

For the purposes of this article, I will be covering a few different models of sewing machine produced by Janome. Janome is another sewing machine brand that is raved about by most sewers. Janome is a Japanese company, with its subsidiary Janome America located in Mahwah, New Jersey. It was established in 1921, and is known for building “the world’s easiest quilting and sewing machines”. Janome offers a variety of types of sewing and quilting machines, with robust features for users, including a powerful motor, and durable builds.

The Janome HD3000 is perfect for large scale quilting and sewing projects. A jam-proof sewing experience is ensured by a top-loading bobbin system, which is really nice. Since jamming is an issue I experienced with the Singer 4423, I really wanted to make note of this feature with the Janome model for users consideration. Adjustable presser feet give the Janome HD3000 the ability to easily sew a lot of different types of fabrics because you can control the pressure being applied to the presser feet that corresponds to the thickness of the fabric. Mid-range price

Five additional presser feet covers blind hem, rolled hem, overedge, buttonhole,and zipper stitching to the precision.

The seven-piece feed dog system makes for ideal control during free-motion stitching or quilting.

Part of what makes the Janome HD3000 so easy for beginners, is that it has a lower Stitch per Minute. However, for more advanced users, this can be a bit underwhelming. Although, in my experience, as described above, I had great ease in using this for large scale projects which (despite its lower stitch rate) this sewing machine is capable of. I was also a little concerned about the lack of variety in types of built-in stitches available.

What I liked

  • Aluminum body
  • Jam-proof sewing
  • Comparably light compared to other heavy duty sewing machines
  • Easy to use/ great for beginners

What I didn't like

  • Users may find 860 stitches per minute underwhelming
  • Only has 18 built-in stitches

Editor's Rating: 4.2 / 5

4.2/5
S photo of Janome DC2013 against white background

3. Janome DC2013

Best machine for all-around use and professional level needs
Our Rating: 4.8 / 5
Brand: Janome
SPM: 1,000
Model: DC2013

What I liked

  • 50 built-in stitches
  • Computerized direct stitch selection buttons
  • Built-in free arm
  • Easy to set up so you can use it right away
  • Relatively quiet for a heavy duty sewing machine

What I didn't like

  • Only works in the US due to 110-V power supply
  • Some users may have a hard time adapting to computerized control panel

Editor's Rating: 4.8 / 5

4.8/5
A photo of Janome HD1000 against white background

4. Janome HD1000


Our Rating: 4 / 5
Brand: Janome
SPM: 840
Model: HD1000

What I liked

  • Aluminum body
  • Built-in free arm
  • 3-Piece Feed Dogs for free motion sewing
  • A lot of sewing accessories
  • 25-Year Limited Warranty

What I didn't like

  • Only has 14 built-in stitches
  • Not designed to stitch denim

Editor's Rating: 4 / 5

4/5
A photo ofJuki TL2000Qi against white background

5. Janome DC1050


Our Rating: 4.2 / 5
Brand: Janome
SPM: 820
Model: DC1050

What I liked

  • 50 built-in stitches
  • Memorized up/down needle stop position feature
  • Jam proof horizontal full rotary bobbin
  • Lightweight for easy travel

What I didn't like

  • Settings might be complicated for beginners to use
  • Zigzag stitch may not work well on thin fabrics

Editor's Rating: 4.2 / 5

4.2/5
A photo ofJuki TL2000Qi against white background

6. Juki TL-2000qi

Best machine for professional use
Our Rating: 4.9 / 5
Brand: Juki
SPM: 1,500
Model: TL-2000qi

What I liked

  • Automatic needle threader
  • Automatic thread cutter
  • LED lights
  • Extension table

What I didn't like

  • Very expensive
  • Not suitable for beginners

Editor's Rating: 4.9 / 5

4.9/5
A photo of Brother PQ1500SL against white wall

7. Brother PQ1500SL


Our Rating: 4 / 5
Brand: Brother
SPM: 1,500
Model: PQ1500SL

What I liked

  • Vertical bobbin and fast speeds
  • Time-saving auto features
  • Quiet compared to other heavy duty sewing machines What I didn't like:

What I didn't like

  • Beginners might find this machine complicated
  • Difficulties with setting the right thread tension

Editor's Rating: 4 / 5

4/5
A photo of Brother ST371HD against white wall

8. Brother ST371HD


Our Rating: 4 / 5
Brand: Brother
SPM: 800
Model: ST371HD

What I liked

  • Easy to store
  • Free arm stitching
  • Metal needle plate for thicker fabrics like denim

What I didn't like

  • A plastic casing
  • No automatic needle threader

Editor's Rating: 4.5 / 5

4.5/5

Buyer's Guide

A BRIEF HISTORY:

First, let’s discuss a little about the history of the heavy duty sewing machine. The sewing machine has been around since the 1700s and the invention itself has been attributed to more than one person, but Elias Howe is credited for inventing the first American sewing machine in 1846. Although our sewing machines have not changed much in overall appearance, the multitude of features and improvements have come a long way towards making things easier and more convenient for the average sewer. To put it simply, our current 2019 models are far more advanced than your grandmother’s sewing machine. Beyond this, the cost of a sewing machine during the 1800s was roughly $125, which is equivalent to $3,470 today, where the best heavy duty sewing machine costs anywhere from only $150-800 in 2019. This means, a once out of reach invention for the average person, can now be afforded and seen in just about every home.

WHAT ARE HEAVY DUTY SEWING MACHINES:

The best heavy duty sewing machine is made to work with more difficult fabrics such as upholstery fabrics, denim, canvas, leather and multiple layers of different materials with ease. They are especially excellent for quilting projects. The best heavy duty sewing machine will also be very durable, and long lasting- even when working at high speeds for quilts many hours per week.

WHO CAN BENEFIT FROM A HEAVY DUTY SEWING MACHINE:

As I said, I think a heavy duty sewing machine is useful for everyone. However, if you’re someone who works with thick, heavy duty materials, and does sewing daily or multiple times a week, then you are definitely in need of a heavy duty sewing machine which will last you significantly longer and perform better than the average sewing machine for your needs.

FEATURES TO CONSIDER WHEN PURCHASING HEAVY DUTY SEWING MACHINE:

Power/ Speed – The stitching power of a heavy duty sewing machine is one of the features that sets it apart from an average sewing machine. The additional power allows you to be able to sew thick fabrics like denim and multiple layers of fabric at once. The power of a heavy duty sewing machine also determines the stitching speed.

Durability – When choosing the best heavy duty sewing machine you want to make sure it has a durable construction. Plastic cases are less desirable for this reason because they are much easier to crack or damage than metal body. Since the best sewing machines should last you a bit of time, you want to make sure construction is sturdy.

Weight – Depending on your needs, you may want the ability to travel with you heavy duty sewing machine, especially if you have classes you need to take it to. For this reason, you want to pay close attention to the weight of your heavy duty sewing machine.

Stitches per Minute (SPM) or Stitch Rate – Associated with the speed of the machine, you want a sewing machine that has the highest stitch rate per minute. The stitch rate adds to the swiftness in which you can work on quilts and garments. Beginners are better off with a lower stitch rate, but intermediate to advanced users should look for the highest stitch per minute rate when comparing sewing machines.

Built-In Stitches – When picking a heavy duty sewing machine, pay attention to the number of and kind of stitches that are built-in. Different sewing machines offer a different stitch sets depending on the kind of designs you wish to create.

Extra Features – LED lights, extension tables, and digital interfaces are just a few of the extra features you may come across when comparing heavy duty sewing machines. It’s up to you what extra features are worth the second look for your sewing projects. These extra conveniences for your sewing machine should be weighted with the cost of the machine.

Cost – Cost can vary greatly for a heavy duty sewing machine and the price is usually the final deciding factor for most people. Personally, I look for quality meeting affordability. I’m big believer in finding quality sewing machines and accessories, all within a reasonable budget. That said, you may be looking to splurge on a top professional machine, in which case, you may compare sewing machines on a higher budget. The important thing, is finding the best heavy duty sewing machine that meets your needs, on your budget.