Best Overlock Machines

Review & Comparison, Last Update October 15, 2017
If you've got a sewing machine and want to bring your projects up to a pro level, then a serger is a must! Fraying edges look unsightly on clothes and can easily ruin them eventually. Don't let this happen, buy an overlock machine and fix these issues before they become a problem. ...Read more ...Read less
BEST 2017
PROS
CONS
OUR VERDICT
Number of threads
Sewing speed
Differential feed
Adjustable presser foot pressure
Stitch length / width
Built-in stitch patterns
INCLUDED PRESSER FEET
Dimensions
Accessories
Warranty
 
PROS
A semi-professional machine with 5-thread capability. Features automatic thread tension.
CONS
Some plastic components are rather fragile, so treat machine with care.
OUR VERDICT
The serger can be used with literally any fabric type you want. Perfect for both home and commercial use.
detailed parameters
Number of threads
2, 3, 4, 5
Sewing speed
Up to 1300 stitches per minute
Differential feed
Yes
Adjustable presser foot pressure
Yes
Stitch length / width
Length: 4 mm Width: 7.5 mm
Built-in stitch patterns
20
INCLUDED PRESSER FEET
Beading foot, Blind hem foot, Cording foot, Elastic foot, Shirring foot, Taping foot, All-purpose foot
Dimensions
13.5'' x 10.5'' x 11.5'' Weight: 23.6 lbs
Accessories
Needle set, Tweezers, Spreader, Screwdrivers, Clean pocket, Serging knife, Spool caps, Anti-Spill net, Oiler, Brush, Cone adapters, Soft-Sided dust cover, CD workbook included, Instruction manual with included stitch guide, Foot control
Warranty
25-years - manufacturer’s defects, 2 years - electric and electronic components, 90 days - parts and labor
PROS
The only model in our review that creates a cover stitch on a fabric.
CONS
Quite a slow sewing speed.
OUR VERDICT
An ideal machine for sewers who constantly stitch on elastic fabrics. The serger rolls fabric edge instead of trimming it.
detailed parameters
Number of threads
2, 3, 4
Sewing speed
Up to 1100 stitches per minute
Differential feed
Yes
Adjustable presser foot pressure
Yes
Stitch length / width
Length: 2-4 mm Width: 3-6 mm
Built-in stitch patterns
5
INCLUDED PRESSER FEET
Blindstitch foot, Gathering foot
Dimensions
11'' x 13.4'' x 11.8'' Weight: 15 lbs
Accessories
Accessory bag with needle set, Thread nets, Tweezers, Spool caps, Spool mat, Cleaning brush, Hexagonal wrench, Soft cover, Operation manual
Warranty
25-years - manufacturer’s defects, 5 years - electric and electronic components, 1 year - parts and labor
PROS
Can be used with ordinary needles from your home sewing machine. Comes with DVD disc with sewing tutorial.
CONS
A small number of the included accessories. You may need to opt for additional ones to complete the set.
OUR VERDICT
A reliable machine under the renowned brand with a comprehensive manual for those who just learn how to sew.
detailed parameters
Number of threads
2, 3, 4
Sewing speed
Up to 1300 stitches per minute
Differential feed
Yes
Adjustable presser foot pressure
Yes
Stitch length / width
Length: 2-4 mm Width: 3 -6.7 mm
Built-in stitch patterns
6
INCLUDED PRESSER FEET
All-purpose foot
Dimensions
14'' x 11'' x 11.5'' Weight: 16.8 lbs
Accessories
Tweezers, Needle set, Spreader, Small screwdriver, Machine Intro DVD, Instruction manual with stitch guide, Foot control, Power cord
Warranty
25-years - manufacturer’s defects, 2 years - electric and electronic components, 90 days - parts and labor
PROS
The serger features the highest sewing speed and whisper-quiet operation if compared to the other models. The included sewing foot responds to a light touch.
CONS
Quite short warranty time as for sewing equipment.
OUR VERDICT
This straightforward but still efficient serger is capable of stitching on the thickest fabrics. Perfect for sewers who work with heavy textiles.
detailed parameters
Number of threads
2, 3, 4
Sewing speed
Up to 1500 stitches per minute
Differential feed
Yes
Adjustable presser foot pressure
Yes
Stitch length / width
Length: 1-4 mm, Width: 3-5 mm (3 threads) Width: 5-7 mm (4 threads)
Built-in stitch patterns
7
INCLUDED PRESSER FEET
All-purpose foot
Dimensions
10.6'' x 13.6'' x 11.6'' Weight: 15.4 pounds
Accessories
Foot control, Nets, Spool caps, Tweezers, Cleaning brush, Needles, Needle box, Small screwdriver, Oiler, Accessory bag, Dust cover, Looper threader
Warranty
1 year
PROS
Compact size and lightweight serger won't take much space on a table top. Designed with intuitive controls.
CONS
Threading the machine is a bit tricky for novice sewers.
OUR VERDICT
The very model is just what a fashion enthusiast needs to complete his/her projects. Features only basic options but still copes with all fabric types successfully.
detailed parameters
Number of threads
3, 4
Sewing speed
Up to 1300 stitches per minute
Differential feed
Yes
Adjustable presser foot pressure
Yes
Stitch length / width
Length: 1-4 mm, Width: 3.1-7.3 mm
Built-in stitch patterns
Overlock stitch only
INCLUDED PRESSER FEET
All-purpose foot
Dimensions
11'' x 12'' x 10.7'' Weight: 14.3 lbs
Accessories
Screwdrivers, Tweezers, Set of needles
Warranty
25-years limited

What is an Overlock Machine

Overlock machines were originally used for industrial sewing. Nowadays, thanks to modern technologies, every sewer can have one at home. So, what for do we need a serger? This device is used to overlock stitches and enclose raw edges in order to prevent fraying. Moreover, an overlock machine trims off excess seam allowance, so you don't have to do it manually. The sergers do a good job in edging, hemming, and seaming and also add a professional look to your garments. You may say that an ordinary sewing machine is capable of it by creating a lockstitch. But it is not completely true since a serger uses loopers to feed several thread cones and adds elastics to the stitches. So, an overlocking machine is an irreplaceable device, for sure.

But it is still not a stand-alone machine and some garments cannot be sewn properly without using an ordinary sewing machine. Thus, we recommend you to look through our review on sewing machines.

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What Features to Compare

Sewing Capabilities

Before you decide on any particular model of overlock machine, you should firstly determine what for you are going to use it. If you need a device for home use, we recommend you to opt for a serger that can be used with 2, 3, and 4 threads. Such models show great results in stitching light and medium weight fabrics and accept almost all tread types. But you should look for a 5-thread machine if you need it for commercial use. They create strong seams required for lacing heavyweight fabrics and also eliminate the need to reinforce the seams with a sewing machine. 

Sewing speed and Usability

If compared to sewing machines, overlockers operate at higher speeds, reaching 1300-1500 stitches per minute. And obviously the faster a serger is the quicker it can complete its tasks. Although, it shouldn't be out of blue that such high-performing machines are usually more expensive too. We'd recommend you to opt for a serger equipped with lower looper threaders and needle threaders and surrender the process of  feeding threads to the machine.

Technical peculiarities

An adjustable differential feed function is what differs overlock machines from other sewing equipment and allows users a total control over the speed of feeding fabric through the needle area for the best results. This feature is of the prime necessity when stitching stretch fabrics and is a guarantee of no wave-like effect on the edges. An overlock machine with an adjustable presser foot would help deal with different types of fabric, ensuring that a cloth of any thickness can slip in between smoothly, so if you plan to work with different fabrics, consider this option too. 

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SINGER 14T968DC Professional 5-4-3-2 Thread

Keeping With the Best Traditions of Singer

If you want to get an overedging machine and a reliable helper in pursuing sewing goals, SINGER will definitely meet your demands. The combination of technical performance along with the company's time-proved reliability makes this device a real workhorse. SINGER serger combines the features of an overlock and a cover stitch machine in one device. SINGER 14T968DC is the only model on our shortlist that features 5-thread stitch capability, ensuring a perfect seam with rolled hems, cover hems, chain stitching, and other built-in stitch patterns on different fabric types, making all your garments look professionally done. Such high-efficiency machines are mainly used for a commercial apparel manufacturing, yet it is not the reason not to buy it for home use. Wondering how the 5-thread stitch looks like? Look at how the pockets on your jeans have been edged and you'll be able to recognize it right away the next time.

Review of SINGER 14T968DC Professional 5-4-3-2 Thread Overlock with Auto Tension

Designed for Comfortable Work

SINGER serger features a wide variety of options to make sewing an easy job. First of all, we'd like to draw your attention to a fully automatic self-adjusting tension system that ensures perfect seams on all types of textile. Secondly, threading the serger is as easy as a pie owing to the automatic looper threader and a color-coded lay-in threading system. With no shade of a doubt, you'll give justice to an attachable clean pocket on the machine that will capture all trimmed bits in it, leaving your working place clean and neat. What's more, SINGER overlock machine offers 20 built-in stitch patterns to choose from and 7 different presser feet that can be snapped on in accordance with your sewing needs. While working with different types of fabric, you'll have an option to adjust the width and the length of a stitch, fitting all clothes you've got to edge.

SINGER 14T968DC Professional 5-4-3-2 Thread Overlock with Auto Tension in the use

More Products to Consider

If you are going to sew a comforter you'd need a quilting machine that is capable of stitching through several layers of fabric easily.

Additional Info

User Manual     Manufacturer


VIDEO
Singer 14T968DC-How I Demystified -5 thread Safety Stitch(1/3)
SINGER 14T968DC Professional 5-4-3-2 Thread
SINGER 14T968DC Professional 5-4-3-2 Thread
 

Brother 2340CV

Entirely Different Serger

A cover hem stitch machine or cover lock is another device of sewing equipment. The machine is used for binding cut edges, stitching them at the same time while edging knitted fabrics. Unlike overlock machines, it's never used for trimming fabric. Still, the popularity of cover hem stitch machines is really immense and everyone is familiar with what it does. All our T-shirts and sports clothes are sewed by a cover lock. The cover stitch can also provide incredible elasticity you wouldn't achieve with any other device, and that's another reason why this machine is so favored by people. Brother cover hem stitch machine works at 1100 stitches per minute, which isn't the fastest speed but absolutely sufficient for most sewing jobs including circular stitching of collars, cuffs, sleeves, pants, skirts, dresses, etc. So, if you're mainly working with stretch fabrics, Brother 2340CV cover hem stitch machine is what you need. 

Review of Brother 2340CV Cover Stitch

Technical Peculiarities

When using a cover stitch machine, all seams are done with either 1, 2 or 3 needles and a looper that make 2-3 parallel rows on a cloth face and a solid seam on a backside. It is the looper stitch that gives sewing durability and strength, locking the seams properly and preventing them from getting loose. That’s also the reason why looper stitches are used for basting either. Now, let’s take a closer look at what else Brother 2340CV has got to offer. Along with the variety of stitches, the machine features a differential feet option, allowing working with different elastic textile, edging them neatly. There’s also an option to adjust the feeding speed and produce a wave-like effect on clothes when needed. A variable presser foot pressure allows comfortable work with the fabrics of a different thickness, making it easier for you to change clothes and lose no evenness of the seams.

Brother 2340CV Cover Stitch in the use

More Products to Consider

Love wearing knit garments? Try to make them with your own hands! With one of the knitting machines you will have a chance to get some practice and make beautiful handmade clothes for your family. 

Additional Info

User Manual     Manufacturer


VIDEO
Brother 2340CV Coverstitch Machine First Impression
Brother 2340CV
Brother 2340CV
 

SINGER 14CG754 ProFinish

The Best Model For Beginners

Right out-of-the-box, this machine comes already threaded and ready-to-use and that’s what you’ll definitely like about it right away. That’s what also makes this SINGER serger a great model for beginners who’re not up to going through a long learning curve but would like to get to work immediately. With that said, we can easily say that SINGER 14CG754 is the most technologically advanced model with all the range of built-in features and fine 2-3-4 thread capacity you would expect from a quality overlock machine. What’s best about it is that suits literally all and one regardless of their skills. All sewing components are adjustable and can give you vast flexibility during work, making it possible to sew on different types of fabrics of different thickness and structure. The distinguishing feature of this machine is a high presser foot lifter that besides giving a spacious working area allows placing in several layers of fabrics. That’s handy for quite a number of sewing jobs and you’ll see it for yourself right after you start using it. The machine comes with easy-to-understand manuals: a DVD disc plus a printed version. They both give users very detailed and comprehensive instructions on how to thread and adjust the machine. All in all, Singer serger is a perfect machine for beginners who want to unleash their imagination and creativity in sewing projects.

Review of SINGER 14CG754 ProFinish Overloeckmaschine

Inventor of Genius

Isaac Merritt Singer is famous for inventing SINGER sewing machine which is  so popular around the world today. The reason for such immense popularity of SINGER sewing equipment is much explained by the introduction of new sewing methods no one has used or seen before. At the time SINGER sewing machine cost a fortune and of course, weren’t widely bought, but in the course of time when the price dropped down and all sewing components have become much more affordable, people got really interested in SINGER product line. Isaac Merritt Singer is famous for being not only an inventor but also a marketing specialist who was the first to make deals with other sewing companies, successfully promoting his stuff.

SINGER 14CG754 ProFinish Overloeckmaschine in the use

More Products to Consider

The manufacturers tend to design much more elaborate equipment with useful features to make the job for a sewer easier. If your machine needs upgrade, why not consider buying a new one from our selection of the recent and popular brands from here

Additional Info

    Manufacturer


VIDEO
SINGER 14CG754 ProFinish 2 3 4 Thread Serger With Machine Intro DVD
SINGER 14CG754 ProFinish
SINGER 14CG754 ProFinish
 

JUKI MO644D Portable

Fundamentally Fast

JUKI MO644D serger is one of the most reliable overlock machines for both novice and pro sewers. It features a variety of built-in stitch patterns and accessories to maximally simplify you sewing process. But the most outstanding thing about this model is it unrivaled sewing speed. Just imagine how fast your projects can be completed at the speed of 1500 stitches per minute! By following the color-coded threading guide printed on a looper door and on the machine's housing you wouldn't even need to refer to the manual all the time. When the machine is threaded you can easily adjust thread tension, stitch width, and differential speed on the right side of the machine's housing in order to create perfect seams on a fabric you work with. As regards the stitch length adjustment, you would need to open a side door and there adjust a special knob. That's probably the only tricky piece of work you'd face to do. We should also mention an automated rolled hem capability that would be highly appreciated by new sewers. The roll hemmer is built-in to the machine; it rolls and oversews the edge automatically, ensuring fine and narrow finishing. With the included all-purpose presser foot, you will be able to sew on most types of fabric and even install elastics, tape, and sequins into your garments. To sum up, JUKI overlock machine successfully combines durability and the variety of features in a single device. So, this high-efficient but still affordable model will be highly appreciated by both beginners and experienced sewers.

Review of JUKI MO644D Portable Serger

How to Choose the Right Threads

Choosing threads for a sewing project and a serger itself is vital, for if unsuitable threads have been used, even the most efficient machines won't be able to produce good seams. They may be either too loose or too coarse and eventually ruin the clothes. Do not use lavsan (mylar) or metallic threads, these are known for their detrimental effect on the machine's operation. Look for a thread which is finer than the one of a regular sewing machine and avoid bulky stitches. The thread should be smooth to easily run through the guides in a serger. It also shouldn't leave lint behind in order to not clog the machine. All best threads are made of cotton, nylon, wool nylon and polyester.

JUKI MO644D Portable Serger in the use

More Products to Consider

ThreadNanny Black and White Spools is a perfect match for JUKI serger. These threads will not tear even on high-speed machines.

With Juki Serger Deluxe 8 Pack of Serger Feet you will have a presser foot for any sewing need that may arise while completing your project.

Additional Info

User Manual     Manufacturer


VIDEO
How to thread the Juki MO644D Serger
JUKI MO644D Portable
JUKI MO644D Portable
 

Janome 3-4 Thread

Small But Sound

Janome Mod-8933 is a pretty lightweight and compact overlock machine if compared to other models on the market. Regardless its compact size, the machine stands stable on a working area when running so, there's no chance whatsoever it may turn over or fall. The right combination of sewing capabilities and features along with intuitive controls makes this model desirable for many fashion enthusiasts and utility users. All the knobs and dials responsible for stitch length/width, thread tension, and differential feed adjustment are located on the machines housing and you wouldn't need to dismantle the whole unit to get to the required knob. Janome overlock machine features quite an impressive sewing speed of 1300 stitches per minute and offers users 3 and 4 thread operation. You will also like a quick change rolled hem system that can be set up in seconds to automatically roll and sew fabric edges. Adjustable differential feed offers users an ability to adjust the speed of fabric feed and thus, create perfect seams on any fabric type, eliminating the wave-like effect on stretch textile. 

Review of Janome 3-4 Thread MOD-Serger with Lay-In Threading

Interesting Facts About Sewing

Sewing has an ancient history estimated to originate 20,000 years ago. There were neither different fabrics nor sophisticated sewing technics back then but only animal skin that people stitched manually. More than that, the whole job had been done with the bones until the 14th century when the first metallic needles were produced. The first scissor-like tool appeared even later than that and was designed by famous Leonardo da Vinci. It was only in 1755 when the first mechanical sewing machine emerged on the market which by the way, didn't have much of success. Its operation wasn't flawless and people found it easier to keep stitching by hands. 

Janome 3-4 Thread MOD-Serger with Lay-In Threading in the use

More Products to Consider

The set of Janome Assorted Serger Needles in 2 sizes (11 and 14) will perfectly suit Janome MOD-serger.

Cutting mat will become an ideal purchase for those who want to secure their tabletops from scratches while using the serger or any other sewing equipment.

Detailed review of Janome 3-4 Thread MOD-Serger with Lay-In Threading

Additional Info

User Manual     Manufacturer


Janome 3-4 Thread
Janome 3-4 Thread
 

Sources:

1. OverlockWikipedia. August 27, 2016.

2. Debbie Colgrove Understanding a Serger or Overlocking Sewing Machine, About. September 2, 2016.

3. Irene Valle How to Use an Overlocker Machine, Craftsy. March 29, 2015.

4. Maris Olsen Sewing With a SergerCraftsy. October 10, 2013.

5. Tiesha Whatley How to Choose a Serger, Overstock.

6. How to Hem, wikiHow.

7. Serger Thread – Types and Benefits of Using Sergers, Create For Less.

8. Millie Schwandt Choose the Right Serger Stitch for Your Project, Threads.

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