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Merrow machine paid off today

Discussion in 'Embroidery' started by binki, Nov 27, 2012.

  1. binki

    binki Very Active Member

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    We added our Merrow machine in the April/May timeframe. We have been bumping along with several short runs of patches a week. It does give us practice as this little machine is very fiesty like a Redhead on a bad hair night.

    Anyway, we know our competition (many competitors in this space) do this stuff in Asia so the average lead time is 4 weeks for them. This is where we thought we could compete on both the short run aspect and timeframes.

    Well, one of our new customers comes in today and they went to their normal patch place and then came to us. They need a 10 day turn on about 400 patches. They supplied some pretty good vector art, picked the colors and we are off to the races. We even got a 50% premium on this because it is time sensitive.

    The short book on this customer is they do a ton of patches and this one order may bring us in as their preferred vendor for patches/emblems.

    The one thing I like about patches is I can set it up and let it run and do other things. Depending on the size of the patch we can do up to 48 or more at a time on the embroidery machine. Only when we have to put the edge on do we need a dedicated person. We can afford to have some amount of rejects so it isn't like we are wasting a ton of $$$ this stuff. The machine will handle up to 1000 emblems a day (we couldn't do that in my dreams at this point).

    We also offer a lot of extra services like producing extras if they need them at a later date (we do it in the initial run to fill the machine and for practice) and no art fees (seems to be common within this space in our area, at least with the 800lb gorilla we compete with, please don't kill me here).

    Anyway, it is nice to make an investment pay off. The work we are picking up for emblems (patches) is really turning out to be a nice profitable part of our business.
     
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  2. WildWestDesigns

    WildWestDesigns Major Contributor

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    I remembered when my Merrow machine was paid off. Man was that a great feeling. Ours doesn't have the same limit as yours, however, I have several other overlock machines in order to step everything up. With the newer overlocks, you can't tell the difference. Depending on the type of thread you use, I can even get some of the older overlocks to look like it came from a merrow machine. Just so long as they are at least 3 thread (although a merrow stitch can be 2) machine.
     
  3. James Burke

    James Burke Being a grandpa is more fun than working

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    There's nothing like a free-and-clear money pump (insert your favorite brand of machine here).

    Feed 'em well, boys (and girls)...feed 'em well.


    JB
     
  4. Mosh

    Mosh Major Contributor

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    I have never had a payment in my life, not even a car payment. No idea what that nuse would be like. IMO if I can't afford it I don't have it....if more were like this the USA would be in better shape.
     
  5. WildWestDesigns

    WildWestDesigns Major Contributor

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    My paying off was more of when I made enough to cover the investment of the initial machine (ROI), not really that I had payments. It's when the machine was just bringing in profit.

    Which is how I'm reading binki's post as well.
     
  6. binki

    binki Very Active Member

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    yeah, we pretty much pay cash for all of our stuff so it is just making bank on it to pay it off from the standpoint of making up the cash outlay.

    it is the most difficult piece of equipment we have to deal with, very rewarding but very unforgiving. on the bright side we delight our customers with it so it works for us. we never say never around here although some nights i am just too tired to go on so i go home no matter what type of music is playing ;)
     
  7. binki

    binki Very Active Member

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    and just as i pushed the post button mrs. binki puts Convoy on.... go figure.
     
  8. WildWestDesigns

    WildWestDesigns Major Contributor

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    That is typical of most overlock machines in general, I'm afraid. From the rhapsodies of just threading the blasted thing, to being able to handle the speed in which it wants to run compared the speed you have to have it run so you can turn the patches to get that edge on there.

    Overlock machines are fun machines to operate and the best thing about them, no bobbin. I would hate to be on a good patch run and run out of bobbin.
     
  9. binki

    binki Very Active Member

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    Yeah, all the thread is right there in front of your face. Except for the floss, our supplier is close by so I can always run down there and pick up more if I need it.
     
  10. WildWestDesigns

    WildWestDesigns Major Contributor

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    About 5 miles from mine, so not too bad either. Not quite down the road, but close enough.
     
  11. xDaemoNx

    xDaemoNx New Member

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    Nice :)

    i have 2 melco amayas and when i bought them i saw an add for an marrow machine, didnt think i needed it as i figured heck my amayas can do applique, same thing just as good... well
    sure it looks good but not as good as merrow... and it take ages to do 3 runs around the bend for the appliqué, and not to mention that it can run from 1-3 bobbin rolls just for the applique....
    will try to get an merrow machine soon, will be a great time saver and not to mention i do not need to trim every patch with a sissor in the same manner again!...

    (there aint to many around here in sweden, especially not for sale.. so when i get one i suppose i have to buy a brand new or used that i need to import...)


    cheers daemon
     
  12. WildWestDesigns

    WildWestDesigns Major Contributor

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    There is no need for a merrow machine when doing applique. Merrow machines do edges, same thing that other overlock machines (sergers do). These are good for patches etc. A coverstitch on an applique is not an edge. A satin stitch is perfectly fine.

    1-3 bobbin rolls for applique? I've never had that happen with applique. Even if you are talking about patch work, unless it's a huge patch (jacket back), I cannot see a whole bobbin being used for just the edging. Plus, a regular satin stitch isn't going to seal the edges unless you use something like a hot knife to melt the edges and this is if you are doing the patch on your embroidery machine and you don't have some type of serger to do the edges.

    In today's machine market, most overlock machines can do a merrow stitch that would look damn close to what the merrow machines do. Even the older overlocks can do it, but you have to use different types of thread to achieve the same look (wool thread underneath to give it some dimensionality, or spun cotton depending on the thread etc).
     
  13. xDaemoNx

    xDaemoNx New Member

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    I'm kind of unfamiliar with the whole overlock/serger machines,
    the melco amaya forum i am on, all searches regarding edges i made there refered to doing applique
    seems many amaya users use applique for edges...
    i've done it too, hardly any good edge , looks good but not on the outside, as i have to trim all patches as close as possible, and color missmatch because if the twilly sticking out on the sides of the applique.. black applique bordering i use a feltpen to cover red/white material...

    i have thought overlock but didn't think they would exchange a merrow edge machine.
    its kind of a new world to me the whole stiching/embroidery etc market.. i've been working with vinyl
    and vinylcutters for over 10 years.


    did a little goggling around on the subject,
    what type of serger/overlock machine should i look for?
    would a juki mo-6704s or brother 1034d work?
    any tips on what to look for and what to avoid in older machines?
    i mean i just dont want to have overlock/serger on mind and buy an old machine that cant do what i need it to do... like what is the type of seem called that i need it to do?

    regarding the bobbin threads use... i usually make a big frame with twilly in it and make 20-30 patches in the frame so thats probally why so much bobbin thread is used..

    cheers daemon
     
  14. WildWestDesigns

    WildWestDesigns Major Contributor

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    Ok, I think I was getting thrown off with the use of applique. There is one small similiarity that might make it technically applique (when you either heat press and/or stitch it on to the garment in the end), but I think of applique as a separate thing altogether and one you that you don't have to worry about sealing the edges of the fabric as much because it's being "sandwiched" in between the satin cover stitch and the garment itself from the outset. With patches you do not have that luxury.

    As far as overlock machines go. You want to make sure that you have at least a 2 thread machine. I prefer 3 thread, but a merrow stitch can be done with two. Now the older that you go with your machine, the more you have to get creative with densities and even type of thread used and where it's used to simulate a merrow stitch. The newer ones typically take into account that people want to do a merrow stitch and have those settings easier to get to. Also, I tend to like overlock machines that can run 2 or 3 needles (and have 5 different positions) to use those needles. That also helps with doing different types of edgings. That also helps in having a machine(s) that can do more seams then just one, but that will depend on if you need to do more then just one type of stitch.
     
  15. binki

    binki Very Active Member

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    We do a lot of applique. We just cut out the design and then sew it down with a satin stitch. A laser cutter will come in handy to do the cutouts though if you do a lot of them.
     
  16. WildWestDesigns

    WildWestDesigns Major Contributor

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    We use a cutter here. Use a heat fusible stabilizer to stiffen it up and use the cutter to cut the shapes out.

    I just can't tell if he is talking about applique in terms of patches (once you sew it on the garment, the patch is technically an applique piece) or in terms of the more traditional applique pieces. If it's traditional applique, there is no need for a merrow or any overlock machine unless you want it to be stand alone applique piece not to be sewn on directly (like you would with a patch).
     
  17. binki

    binki Very Active Member

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    Do you cut regular fabric with the cutter? We have a lot of customers come in with fabric and we fuse a mesh on the back of it and then add stabilizer when we sew it. I like the Epilog because it has an ethernet connector but our twill supplier uses Universal which is USB. I want to be able to print for any of our computers, not just one.

    I have not had real good luck cutting twill with the cutter though.
     
  18. WildWestDesigns

    WildWestDesigns Major Contributor

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    We've done both and haven't had any issues with both, but by far the majority is regular fabric. In fact, just got done with a couple of rompers with a design that I created that I cut out 3 different types of fabric (not just colors, but different weave and density of weave as well). Not a hiccup.

    The only time I'll really cut out twill is if I'm doing blank patches for a couple of people that don't want to deal with minimums from internet suppliers. The do have their own overlock machines (home version, but the amount of patchwork that they do, and the machines are high end enough to last through that and more use), so I just cut out the shapes.
     
  19. binki

    binki Very Active Member

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    I will try it again and see how it comes out.
     
  20. WildWestDesigns

    WildWestDesigns Major Contributor

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    Now with Rolands they do have a specific blade for Twill/Fabric and that's what I'm using. I don't know what brand of cutter you are using, but if you aren't already, I would look for their specific fabric blade. I know the multipurpose blade didn't work well when I had forgotten to change out the blades when I had just finished cutting vinyl and went to applique work one time.

    That may or may not be your issue, just thought I would mention that.
     
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