Monday, September 21, 2015

Consew 289RB-1

Picked up a post-bed machine from Nick-O Sew a while back and been setting it up to my liking. Pretty excited about the different kinds of construction methods I can use now.
I believe the 289 is the post-bed version of the 255, which is Consew's fancier flat-bed upholstery machine (the 206 being their standard machine).
This is a used machine (from the Seiko era), but it's still in production.

Needle-feed, walking-foot, of course. Size U bobbin, methinks. It's slightly bigger that the M bobbin that many of my other machines use.

Instead of a stitch-length dial, you press a button on the bed and turn the handwheel. 

I love this thread guide.

Nice hinged door to the needle-bar stuff. I wish more machines had this feature.

Been practicing making tiny half-totes.


Unknown said...

an unrelated wife wants a machine that will do a good job with leather upholstery but also can handle dresses for our daughters and other light sewing well. Right now she has no machine. Can you please recommend a machine? I want to surprise her. Budget is $1000-$1500 or so.

Thank you!

cory said...

Hi Steven,
Industrial sewing machines are happiest sewing in a particular range. A walking-foot, needle-feed upholstery machine is not going to sew lightweight materials very well w/o bunching ... unless we are talking about velvet dresses. I've noticed that the Juki 1541 sews lighter materials (4oz Oxford nylon) better than my Tacsew 111, probably because of its semi-rectangular feed ... so maybe the fancier Jukis (like the 1510) with full rectangular feed will sew even lighter fabrics fine ... but you're entering mega-$ territory once you move past the 1541S.
The Juki 8700 is worth looking at. It sews lighter materials well and can handle softer upholstery leathers fine (up to N69/T70 thread). There is a bagmaker in Chicago who uses an 8700. It's probably not good for the machine, but it can be pushed to do heavier stuff.
So, you could start with a lighter industrial machine and move up to an upholstery machine later, or go with an upholstery machine like the Juki 1541S or Consew/Seiko 206RB and get an old Singer for dressmaking?
It happens that I got an email from Atlas Levy today about a used Juki 8700 sale:

Lemme know if you have any more questions at coryleif at gmail.

Unknown said...

I just got the exact same machine and currently I can’t seem to find much online about the RB-1 model. I have a few questions about it if anyone can help me that would be great.
What size needle does this model take? 35/16? Or 17?

Is it a reverse feed model?

Did you ever find out if it does take the U size bobbin?

Have you found any issues or have any other information about this model that would be good to know? I would appreciate any thoughts or comments possible that could help me starting off with this beautiful machine!

Thanks a bunch!

cory said...

Hi Unknown,

Needle: 135 x 17. 135 x 16 for leather points.
Bobbin: U. Though, it might also take an S (the RB-2 does) ... and an M does work in a pinch:

In Consew's naming convention, R stands for Reverse. B stands for Large Bobbin.
I have an issue with the thread popping up and making loops occasionally. I think it's from using old thread. If yours has the felt-pad thread guide, put some thread lube in there. Make sure the opening level next to the hook is adjusted correctly (often overlooked).

If you have more questions, is the place to go. Throwing questions out to just anyone on Blogger is like shouting into the void these days.

Happy sewing!

— cory