Husqvarna Viking Designer SE Limited EditionAverage Rating: 2.6 out of 5
Number of Reviews: 83
• Positve: 36
• Negative: 47
Review this product
I bought my traded-in Designer SE and many of it’s accessories from my local quilt shop in Sept. 2010 based on it being a Husqvarna/Viking machine made in Sweden. Spent $3700 and loved it at first. I barely used it and within a couple years the mother board went out and it is expensive to replace. Found out the machine was made in China, I was duped. After asking around to several pros for advice they said this machine is plagued with problems so do not invest anymore. After I “got over it” and much research, I have now moved on to another brand.
So, 3 stars might be too much but I have a love/hate relationship with my DSE. I had a D1 first and loved it, had no problems, but wanted USB so I sold it (it’s still going strong with the new owner of 10 years now). I’ve had the SE rebuilt at least 3 times, luckily at no cost to me, and I still can not walk away from it while it embroiders. I have to sit and tend it every second or it will catch in the feed dogs and pull the throat plate right off, break a needle or some other evil thing. When it works right I love it but I’ve had the belt come off more than once and I have had to take it apart to put the belt back on. ( I live 2 hours from the nearest Viking repair person so they told me how to fix some things myself) The mother board has been replaced, the screen has been replaced, not sure what else they have done but I’ve been told that the problems are unusual. After reading these reviews I’m pretty sure that’s not true. I just bought a Diamond Deluxe, luckily with a one year warranty. I have had it one year and have used it about 1 hour. I am in the process of sending it back for the 4th time. They have extended my warranty for another year since I’ve had so many problems. 2 of the issues were HV design flaws that happened on all the machines, apparently. So, I’m glad I still have the SE to use as my Diamond travels repeatedly across the country. I own 6 Viking machines and have loved Viking for 40 years but the new machines are NOT made in Sweden-Viking machines and I will probably go with Baby Lock if I ever feel inclined to drop thousands of dollars on a machine again. My 30 year old machines are the bomb!!
I own two Husqvarna Designer SE’s of which one I bought new and the second came when a close friend died and her family gave it to me. One’s made in China and the other in Sweden. The China made machine has nothing but problems beginning with a failing tension module when the machine had a total time of only 120 hours which cost me $300, and then the display screen went out for another $300 and each time I have to take it for service I’m forced to pay a minimum of another $115. Due to secrete codes that are only available to certified Husq. technicians I’m not able to adjust the internal settings but am forced to use Husqvarna Technicians. The gentleman who said you must find a good technician is right.
I will say I love sewing on the SE when it works properly because it’s very easy to use. The problem is it’s not made well and they don’t last very long without breaking nor are they reasonable in price to repair. The warranty is garbage even though it sounds good in the beginning. At the rate I’m going I could have bought a commercial machine for $20,000 or $30,000 and been a lot better off had I known then what I know now! Now I’m trapped in this expensive world of sewing and embroidery with inferior machines I can’t resell for more than a few cents on the dollar to what I originally paid. The nearest dealer is 30 miles from my home. They have all sorts of high end inventory but technical support they lack! I carried the SE in when the tension module failed and my quote to repair began at $115 then grew to $300 and finally it was going to be $1250 yet not one screw had been touched, the machine wasn’t cleaned or even inspected but merely sat on a shelf and several calls made to me trying to coax me into authorizing more and more money. I demanded it be returned to me in the condition I delivered it in then located a nice lady in Bradenton Florida who owns a Husqvarna dealership who repaired it for $300. She’s continued to work on my machines and I’m certainly glad to have her. Problem is they keep breaking. This China made SE has only 450 hours total time and I’ve spent more than $1500 in service and repairs thus far. Needless to say the so called warranty DID NOT PAY and Husqvarna refused to talk to me. The Sweden made machine is better by far but it too has had it’s share of problems. Sadly I had invested in several Husqvarna machines before I learned of all the problems. I own in total a Platinum, two SE’s, and a Designer Ruby. THe only machine that’s withstood use and seems to run as it should is the Platinum. It is a terrific and reliable machine but it doesn’t have all the latest features such as auto thread cutter and stitch placement and such. However, it’s really easy to use. Every time I take it somewhere I have people trying to buy it from me and I’ve realized the dealers want you to trade your old machines because it causes you to be trapped in their very expensive cycle of repairs on the new models. STAY AWAY FROM CHINA MADE HUSQVARNA MACHINES!
One more note: I just had to buy another display screen again for the China made SE…. I was told that Husqvarna no longer makes them for the SE or the Designer I and there’s only 8 left at the factory. Instead of costing $300 as it was before eight months ago, Husqvarna is now charging $1000.00 EACH! All you SE owners I highly encourage you to keep your eyes out for a parts machine to have on hand. Since Husqvarna is not going to support us with needed replacement parts for the thousands of machines out here, we must do what we can to store extra parts away for the future! I’m looking to buy all the electronic parts I can find that’ll fit my machines. Needless to say I’ll not put any more money in buying Husqvarna, they’re not what they used to be and the new ones are certainly not worth what you pay! I too am leaning toward Babylock / Brother for my future investments! Happy Sewing! Make sure you warn your friends!
After reading all the reviews on the designer se, I which I could have read these before I would never bought this machine. All the complaints are the same as mine.Thread breaks and bunches up and is a mess to get the thread out. Now my feed dogs are down and material will not feed into the machine. I have to pull material through and this breaks needles. I have had my machine in several times, I always am made to feel I do not know what I am doing. Very disgusted.This machine costs to much money not to work the way it should.
The problem with ANY Viking sewing machine is with a bad shop or incompetent technicians.The SE is a wonderful machine if you have a good tech and support.
I repair these machines every day, HV and Pfaff are crap machines made in China with the intent of selling on the name. The machines are engineered to fail, Singer is cheap crap not even worth taking to the shop and manufactured to get the young sewer hooked into the sewing deception that leads one to purchase a 15k machine. After attending several manufactures training and becoming certified to work on different makes of machines I have to say that Babylock (Brother) provides the most sewing time for the buck, and is the best engineering.
I have had my Designer SE for 7 years now I didn’t get to embroider much the first 3 years as I was working but now that I am retired I love to sew but embroidery is a nightmare all I do is break needles and the machine bunches up in the bobbin and knife area have had the machine in the shop 3 times already and we have to either drive 100 miles to Las Vegas or 200 miles to Flagstaff, Az which is a much better shop I don’t sew for money it is just a hobby and we have already spent way too much money on this dog I wish I would have bought a different machine but anymore I don’t trust any of them anyone have a suggestion on a better embroidery machine without breaking the bank?
I received the HV Designer SE as a gift new in the box, but didn’t open until this past year when I retired. I loved it and even upgraded the software.
Now, less than 20 hours on the machine, there are times when I turn it on and only the 3 push buttons (stop, fix and cut) will flicker and the machine will not power up. Ironically, it is not all the time and once I removed the bobbin and it fired right up.
I took in for service and was told it needed a new motherboard for $900 and only rebuilt were available. I’m not sure this is the issue and the technician didn’t seem confident that it was really the problem.
Any suggestions before I fix or replace? What are the symptoms of a motherboard failure on this machine?
Thanks . . .I want to get sewing again!!
I have designer SE limited the embroidery unit doesn’t work right hasn’t since I purchased it. Tension is off. Just took in to be repaired because it’s not picking up stitches in the hoop or free motion repair is going to cost 250. Because the Hooper hook is broke this unit is one problem after another wish I had not purchase it. For something you pay over 3 grand shouldn’t break down so much
My ruby from hell has been in the shop going on 8weeks. No pc board to be found anywhere. Given the runaround by place of purchase and Laverne , tn don’t bother calling them unless you don’t mind being on hold 54mins. Claims my call is really important to them. REALLY! Will never buy another Viking again.
I bought the Designer SE from my deceased aunt’s estate. I know she could not sew and I am certain the machine got little use. I was excited to get the machine for $1000.00 but it wasn’t on for an hour when it started smoking and screen cut out. Found that there were recalls on the power transformers and called customer support. I have been told twice that a supervisor would call me back. Hasn’t happened yet. Reading all the negative comments here, I disappointed and never sewed with it.
I’ve owned my Designer SE for 8 years now. When it works….it’s fantastic fun…..but when it doesn’t….I want to toss this $6,000 unit OUT THE WINDOW. Straight sewing is fine (although I normally use my Singer Confidence Quilter as my “work-horse”. However, right in the middle of a embroidery design, my SE freezes up, window goes gray, or, the needle sews “in place” creating a mess. I’ve taken this machine in 3 times….still have the problem today. Don’t buy this unit.
My comment has to do with all the Husqvarna sewing machines…never ever ever leave them plugged in even on a surge protector…esp if you are not sewing everyday!
this will blow the boards out quicker then you can turn on a light switch. I have the DS1 and its over 10 years old, never had a issue with this machine, keep them cleaned and serviced and if anything is made in China or Japan…Dont buy it~
I have the designer SE and I am still learning ,its a good machine, however the instruction CD that came with the machine will not load for me so I am struggling to get any further with regards to what exactly this machine is capable of doing any help would be greatly appreciated
Embroidery board does not embroidery designs I choose.Instead embroideries the entire menu on the screen one on top of the other.Repairman seems only interested in selling the newest and most expensive machines rather than assisting me with Designer 1 problems.Needs to be upgraded which I have no idea how to do.Software was stolen thus have to spend $160.00 to replace and hopefully be able to figure out how to install.The boards slide onto the machine with great difficulty as though entire machine is warped or something.No one really interested in providing instructions on how to repair the darn machine no one else wants to work on any ways.Maybe timing;calibration;balance or something simple.I can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org if anyone out there can offer suggestions.
Ok the machine works if you are just sweing straight stichs. But anything el the machine will get his or hers atitud. You take your machine for services and it always takes for ever to get it back. The same old excuse the main store or factory is moving and they are back up. For the money you should have a much better product. The clases are mediocre and the hassle of not having your machine with you because it is having work done.. I call the district manager and she was rude, Mrs knowing everything and she did not even took the time to try to fix my problem… the embroidery arm is never calibrated right… supposedly the machine can go and sew on top of the stich and every time it does the calibration just goes off… sad part the machine is pack sitting in the closet. Since I can’t even sew on the machine without having a problem…
I own Designer one I traded my SE for and paid an additional $4000.00 used in 2007.Embroidery worked well at first but now does not allow me to select a single designed and embroidery it.Instead it takes me through every single built in design placing one on top of the other and skips the selected design.If anyone has a suggestion on how to resolve this issue I would forever be Grateful.
I just had the mother board replaced on my designer SE limited edition replaced, had 220 hours on machine. Would never buy another one, had to pay $832.00 for the replacement. Now I have some questions about whether it is compatible with Windows 7, because first one was windows XP and they want to charge for answering questions, DON’T BUY ONE!
j’ai cette brodeuse elle est formidable quand je lis les critiques je pense que ces personnes ne savent pas s’en servir il y a un apprentissage a faire pour moi je l’ai depuis 2008 et je ne connais encore pas toutes ses possibilités il faut persévérer et vous en serez je suis sur tres satisfaite bon courage
I too purchased a designer1. At the time had to return the machine to the dealer very same day. Embroidery arm issues. The dealer kept it and repaired..one week! This was an 8,000$ purchase in 2003. I immediately wrote to HV stating I wanted a replacement since this was a brand new out of the box machine. Actually, never received an answer. My dealer although agreeing with me never replaced he just kept completing repairs. This story is too long for a post, I too feel these sewing machine companies should be sued. These are alot like buying a computer, motherboards and lcd screens have a limited life….yet we can upgrade or still use our pc when there are software and other issues, cannot do this with these sewing machines. Personally feel the LCD screens should be separate, all electronic parts should be easily changeable as a computer, five years ago last event the screen died, wanted 1500$ to replace. Come on….we have screens on our pcs and tablets we should be able to use these, if not separate the units! I want another sewing embroidery machine and as much as I hear about other makes and am often tempted cannot get around to spending another 10K$ plus accessories and encounter the same situation….cannot believe machine manufacturers are not aware of this, think they have seriously and knowingly behaved knowing they talk about user errors….well maybe the people they hire to make our sewing machines have no idea what sewing involves….very nice gadgets that do not work….think how many IT products are manufactured however there are alot of users and they cannot get away with it…..sewing machine manufacturers can due to a small market who normally need their equipment and want to get to work….we really have no other options but to pay up and wait, pay up and wait….a little like extortion. Sewing is my favorite activity, I am tech savy…..I want to purchase another, unfortunately cannot justify the price from any standpoint….sad situation.
My SE motherboard has died…it was working one day then just quit. Mega $ invested.
Upgraded from my Designer I (which I LOVED), only because i wanted to change from floppy disk to USB. Took it in pretty quickly, as the tension was terrible. No improvement from the Viking Gallery. Took it in again later (remember - it takes at least 2 weeks turn around).
This went on for awhile, same bad tension. It’s really embarrassing to own a business sewing for small children when your machines stitches so terribly. A small plastic piece broke off and it wouldn’t embroider - at all. It wouldn’t interact with the hoops. Took it to a sew and vac - he figured out what was broken and sent me after the part. Worked on tension - no improvement.
Finally took it to a local independent dealership with a great repairman. He finally straightened out the tension. But now the usb port for embroidery isn’t working, and actually turns the machine off when I try to put in a stick. It won’t recognize the usb, either. And, when I turn on the machine, sometimes the buttons blink, but the machine doesn’t come on.
Lovely. I can’t afford to buy a new one. I need a new or gently used one. What do I buy?
My sister bought a used SE LE before I did; she was able to take classes & works with a dealer to get upgrades & advise. I got mine 2000 model used, but not from a dealer. I wasn’t able to get to classes, so I’m sort of at a disadvantage. I have read the manual & tried taking things slowly. Have had the machine for at least 5 years, got the 4D Professional package with the idea of doing a lot of embroidering……haven’t opened the package yet.
I took the machine to my local sewing center to get it checked out before using it - came back w/ a clean bill of health. I used it for regular sewing with really no problem for about a year. NOW I am having problems with the thread jumping out of the tension arm (I NEVER HAD THAT PROBLEM W/ MY VIKING 6460!) and the thread from the spool constantly breaking after I’ve slowed down to make sure I’m sewing where I want to. And then the thread cutter isn’t working - sometimes it cuts both threads, other times just the bobbin thread. The needle threader is out of alignment. I’m taking more time to re-thread the machine, rip out stitches than what I would have initially sewn. It is a more ‘delicate’ machine and won’t sew through several thicknesses of denim when I do repairs.
I regret getting this unit - it’s probably better for someone who has time to take the classes and doesn’t do a much repair work as I do.
I did love my 6460 and will keep looking for another - now that was a workhorse of a machine!!
I have had this machine for almost 10 years now. Most of the first 7 have been in the shop, both local and at the factory. When it sews it is nice, unfortunately that is rare. It is in the shop again, and I was just told that Viking knows that there is a problem with the “hook mechanism” which causes poor stitching tension, etc. They are replacing the hook now free of charge, but you need to pay for labor. The shop where I purchased the machine from (now closed) tried servicing it and “fixed” it, but it never worked properly. I would say in the first 7 years I logged less than 100 hours on the machine. I found a wonderful serviceman (about 200 miles away) in Crofton, MD at Tomorrow’s Treasures. He got my machine working! Unfortunately, it is back in for repairs due to thread breaking and tension problems. This is due to the “hook” creating static electricity when embroidering and essentially shorting itself out. Now know that when embroidering, one has to reduce the speed for it to work properly. Many great features on the machine, but no company service…was in to Viking 3 times and each time came back in worse shape. If money wasn’t an issue, would toss the machine out. Search out a great repair person, as the company does not service these older machines. The company technician I spoke with told me they only stay up on one to two generation back of machines and software. Also be aware that the timing is set differently for all of the various Designer models, so if when it is serviced they use a generic manual, the timing would be off. It is different for the Designer SE, Designer I, Designer SE LE, etc. That was the original problem, the shop where I purchased it from, did not feel the need to invest in each individual service manual, so they arbitrarily set the timing. It was off, causing major issues. Machine works very nicely when it runs, but has too many issues. Agree with other posts, the company does not stand behind the machine or its customers. All of my problems started in the first 3 months of ownership. I am glad I have found someone to work on it, who is honest and reliable. Just wish they were not so far away. Overall I would say stay away from Viking machines.
I have had my HusqvarnaI had a Viking Designer SE for about 8 years, had a minor problem with the upper tension but once that was fixed I have not had any problem since. I just take it in for its yearly checkup and keep the bobbin case cleaned. I have sold Vikings for several years and I always help people even if that have the older machines. It gets me mad that others have not gotten the good service that I try to give. I have found that most of the problems stem from user errors, I know because I have done the same thing.
I have had 2 SE machines since 2006.I use one for embroidery and one for straight sewing. I have absolutely no complaints about either machine. I have found that I have to be sure to use Husquvarna bobbins and other accessories and top quality threads and stabilizers, etc. I used a generic walking foot for quilting and had a problem. My machines have many hours on both. I question the quality now that the company has merged and the machines are being manufactured in China. I will never buy another now.
OWNED DESIGNER 1–UPGRADED TO SE–WORKED OK FOR A WHILE-BUT FINALLY WENT DOWN AFTER ABOUT 2 YEARS–NO HELP WHATSOEVER FROM HUSQVARNA–SUPPORT AND SERVICE IS ABSOLUTELY AWFUL–MADE MISTAKE OF BUYING ANOTHER HV MACHINE FOR THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS–HAVE OVER $45,000 INVESTED IN HV MACHINES AND SOFTWARE–WILL NEVER DEAL WITH THEM AGAIN–THEY SHOULD BE SUED AND RUN OUT OF BUSINESS–SELL A TERRIBLE PRODUCT FOR A VERY HIGH PRICE–UNFORTUNATELY, I WAS GULLIBLE ENOUGH TO BELIEVE IN THEM!!
I purchased the SE after having a great experience with the Designer II. I am not very pleased with the machine - embroidery stalls mid stitchout, the thread cover broker and doesn’t seem to be repairable, doesn’t handle sewing nearly as well as the Designer II. I’ve tried several times to get assistance from HV to no avail. Let’s just say that they’re customer services is less than lacking…it’s non-existent. Responses are rude - we longer support this machine. They may as well say “too bad so sad” Needless to say, I think I’ll check out other brands for my next machine. For what these machines cost, support should be excellent and it is less than poor.
My previous entry was back in 2009. After many repair visits, my machine was sent to HV in Tennessee. After 3 months my machine was returned to me, and the following day was taken back for repairs. I was then told that the machine needed to go back to Tennessee. At that point (4/2010) I wrote to the director of quality for HV, Greg Atwater. Within 2 weeks, I had a new machine. It wasn’t really a new new machine, since HV no longer manufactured the Designer SE LE, but it was a machine that had only been used by HV for demonstrations. So, I was happy… I had a new machine sanctioned by the quality director of HV himself. NOW, fast forward, 3 years and this camper is not so happy AGAIN! The machine started having belt and motor issues a year after I got it. It has been in for repair 7 times with pulley issues. From what I have been told by my tech, the pulley made by HV is plastic and poor in design. Since it is plastic, it continues to break. My service tech has been gracious enough to not charge me all these visits but at this rate, a visit every month for a new pulley, once I have to start paying, will put me in the poor house for sure. So, I am off to the computer, to write ANOTHER letter to HV. Once my $8,000 machine starts costing me more money due to faulty design on the part of HV, I take offense to that! I’ll let you know how I fare this go around. Feel free to follow up with me personally. email@example.com
Basic sewing is all right. Embroidery is finicky. I get best results when I operate slowly with manual footfeed. It tends to birdnest under the feeddogs. It doesnt perform well on intricate designs. Some of the embroidery features just don’t work any more, such as being able to edit a design. I think maybe the motherboard is dying. When it works as it should, I really like it. When not, it is more than frustrating. I experiment with different stabilizers, thread, etc. It is just finicky.
Zenqi, I am just like you. I’ve been a sewing machine dealer and repairman since the mid 60’s. The new Husqvarna Viking embroidery machines are nothing but a headache; always in for service, very difficult to get running properly, complicated to work on, terrible level of help from the company.
I have no doubt that ALL these manufacturers bang out these high end machines at the factory level for under $500.00 each.
Why doesn’t someone come out with a solid, high quality, Hirose type end loading rotary hook machine with a simple mechanical counter balance to offset the left/right vibration of the lower shaft, sintered bearings on shafts, and steel rather than aluminum needle bar cradles that wear out quickly. It would be easy to service and last forever. When was the last time you had a worn or seized needle bar or needle bar cradle on a machine from the 60’s? Probably never…
But in fairness, I can’t say the other brands are any different… They need to build a really good “work-horse” of a machine first, after that they can begin adding features.
I’ve had a problem with the hinges on top. On the whole it is a great machine. Love it.
I paid $4000.00 for my embroidery machine and the software that is required to get designs to the machine. Now that windows 7 is out Husqvarna won’t support the software that I already bought for around 1300.00. I have to buy new software if I want that option. They said they only write software for the operations systems that are out at that time.. Well you know how fast operating system change!!! Buy your software today and tomorrow it may be obsolete and their answer is give us more of your money and we’ll give you a different software that will run on the new operating system. Their machine are wonderful… Their support SUCKS!!
Numerous problems and in the shop a dozen or more times , 4 times more oftn then the phaff I have had for 30 years. Now the screen is out and we are waiting for a part and the man who works on my machine is a certified Viking repair man and he says getting the part is a very big headache. If you have the chance to get this machine for free do yourself a favor and run away as fast as you can. I am so tied up in additons to the machine I can not move on to a new machine but if I could I would do so today.
Great sewing and have fun.
I bought a Rose in 1998 and then the Designer SE in 2005. I must be very lucky because I haven’t had many problems. I replaced the board last year. I have over 4,000 hours of sewing/embroidery on this machine. The biggest help was switching repair shops. I go through a lot of motors because of the amount of sewing I do but my technician always has one in stock. I’m getting ready to buy another one! I can’t justify the expense of a Diamond or a commercial brand embroidery machine. I think Huszvarna makes a good home embroidery machine
I brought my DSE Machine and loved it until now. For some reason when I use my wizard to scan a picture, it locks up and won’t scan at all. I ran the software again and it still does not work. Everything else is perfect, but I need to scan. I hate flaws in anything I own. For the money I paid, I felt it should last a life time. Help
Follow up. It is now March and I am still waiting for my machine to be evaluated by Viking. It was sent to Lavergne, TN Headquarters and my local dealer was just told they are “backed up” and are in the process of “moving the warehouse”. I’ve been calling every week and am sure I am a pest. This company has the worst service I’ve ever encountered. Since Singer, Phaff, Viking are all one. I suggest buying Babylock or Bernina. STAY AWAY FROM THIS COMPANY.
Hate this machine.
This is the second time in three weeks I’ve had this lemon in the shop.
It just quits half way or less into an embroidery piece.
Who knows how long it will take to get the machine back or if it will work then. I’ve not even used this machine but about a month. Someone needs to investigate this company.Never will I buy another Husqvarna viking machine. I don’t see how these people even stay in business.
My SE started to make some strange noises in November. I was told it needed to be cleaned. Set up for service but it never made it before it stopped working. It needs a part and was sent to the “main service office” early December. Local Viking dealer did not know if it was still covered. It is now mid February and “they are backed up and didn’t get to my machine yet”. Cannot recommend Viking machines for service seems to be non-existent.
I bought my designer SE 5/06. I LOVE my machine when it works properly. I do have to sit and watch as it applique’s even if I use one color thread. Sometimes the thread breaks during emboridery. It will sew nice stiches no complaints there (in sewing machine mode). The BIG complaint is the PC board has gone bad twice. First time it was under warrenty but when I got it back from repair it was doing the same thing. This happened 3 times after I would get it home. The screen would go blank and when I first turned it on the screen would stay blank and take 20min to light up. It’s two years later and in the shop for another PC board. The dealer that I purchased my machine from is the only place local that repairs :( The dealer said the PC board will cost $389.00 but they would give me 20% off. Not sure if I should be charged for ANOTHER PC board that was just replaced. I am in the market for a new embroidery machine BUT I will purchase a stand alone machine and keep the sewing machine for sewing. I believe the combo sewing/embroidery is too much function going on in one machine which causes hiccup’s IMO. OH, and I will not be buying a HV!!!
I bought my Designer SE Limited Edition in 2008 a couple of months before the Diamond was introduced. At first, because this was the first machine I had purchased in decades, I experienced problems. These were dealt with by the outstanding support provided at the Husqvarna shop where I got my SE.
Since correcting my user error mistakes and giving the machine a chance, I have decided that it is really a great sewing machine and would never be without it. However, the machine is made of plastic and plastic breaks. It seems that the design engineers did not take this into account so I had to replace the front bobbin storage case due to broken hinges. Aside from these exterior annoyances, I have had little problem and I am not sorry I bought it.
I am also sorry that so many people have had such serious problems with their Designer SE sewing machines, but I still love mine so far.
Like many who have commented, I started with the Designer 1 and loved my machine but was frustrated that I had to convert everything to a floppy disk so I bought the Designer SE LE (luckily I kept my old machine because the trade in was ridiculously low). The new machine didn’t sew correctly from the beginning. One big disappointment in the design was that it didn’t have the extra extension to bring the sewing area out about 3-4 inches farther like the D1 had. I still miss that feature when I’m sewing on projects. I kept getting the message that the presser foot was too high but it was in the lowered position or in the correct position. I took the machine to the dealer but it came back doing the same things. Finally, it was so bad they found the problem and said I needed a new head. Luckily it was still under warranty. I had hardly used the machine because it was so frustrating. Now it seems to be working better but am getting warnings to check the upper thread when there is nothing wrong. Now that I’m using the machine again, I want to put the software that came with the machine on my new laptop with Windows 7. I can’t find any specific information on their website as to how to upgrade to a Windows 7 machine for this software. I’d be interested if anyone has solved this problem.
I don’t think my next machine will be a Viking.
I am VERY disappointed in this machine. After trading in my D1 just after the SE came out I am still kicking myself. The first motherboard was replace when the maching was in use only about a year. That repair took over 6 weeks to get the part. Now it’s in again–another board and birdnesting issues. I am a retired home ec. teacher and used and owned Vikings for over 30 years. Now looking for a new embroidery machine rather than spend over $600 for repairs on a disappointing machine that will probably go down again with no warrenty. BTW–I love my Viking Fresia!!!
I love my SE. I also purchased a Diamond, but the only thing better about it is the larger hoop. In every other way I prefer my SE. I am sorry to see so many disgruntled reviews about the SE. Now, mine is not the LE; don’t know what difference that makes. I have had no problems with my SE in 5 years.
I purchased the Designer SE about 6 years ago, and was never 100% satisfied with the sewing. Took it in multiple times and it was always “something” I was doing to cause the problem. Finally, I angrily took in for servicing (1 month out of the warranty), still doing same that I took it in for. Guess what, now I have a blown control panel….caused by not using the Viking USB???? Well, paid $$$ to have it repaired, sewed only with Viking USB and within 2 hours of sewing control panel blew again, repaired at no charge. Now the tension can’t be adjusted and the embroidery still does not work properly….machine freezes when it is time to change hoop positions. Dealer does not want to take machine in tradein…suggested selling it on E-Bay to get more. How can I ethically do that? Some may, but it is not in me to do that. I feel Viking should take these machines in at a reasonable trade-in. Do not buy one used as it is probably someone else’s headache.
Since you have been a repairman for so many years and agree with the flaws of the Viking SE that so many have posted here, what machine(s) do you recommend for embroidery?
Oh, I HATE this machine!!!! I spent $7000 on it when I upgraded from the Designer 1. I love the Designer 1! The SE sews what it wants to when it wants to. Seldom does it sew or embroider perfectly. It must be babysat and coddled. If I hadn’t spend so much money on it I’d throw it out the window. I’ve had it in for repairs over and over. Somehow the repairman cannot get this stupid machine to act up like it always does for me. It breaks tons of needles, unthreads itself, makes huge birds nests under the presser foot, stops sewing a decorative design all by itself and zooms off at high speed in a straight stitch, the check upper thread window constantly comes on when there is no problem with either the upper nor lower thread, it doesn’t tell me when the bobbin is empty…and on and on and on!!!! DO NOT BUY THIS MACHINE!!!
After waiting six weeks, the motor for my SE came into my dealer and was installed the same day. The machine is working perfectly now, although it sounds a bit different. Happy sewing.
This is in response to “Sew and Sew” just below. I had lots of problems with “check upper thread” for a long time. But my serviceman found that the bobbin tension was way too loose. (I had fiddled with it trying to get rid of the “check upper thread message” and had loosened it when it should have been tightened, so the problem had gotten worse. So try tightening your bobbin tension–quite a bit I should think. That really took care of my problem.
I agree that the automatic thread cutter doesn’t work well, and the little thing that is supposed to help you thread the needle only works with larger needles.
After getting my bobbin tension figured out the machine worked beautifully for hundreds of hours. I am extremely happy with the machine but not with the company’s response in getting the new motor to my dealer. I had embroidered 600 hours in six years on my SE when the motor went out. I guess I wore the motor out, huh?
Well, it is now February 25, 2011, and my Designer SE has been in the shop since January 21 waiting for a new motor. See my first comments above. The dealer is having a terrible time getting the part from the company. The company is giving my dealer a real run-around. My dealer, The Electric Hospital in Coos Bay, OR, tells me the company has merged with Singer/Pfaff and ever since they are having trouble. The company sends the wrong parts, or not all items ordered, all the time. My dealer is losing lots of business (and money, of course) because of this. My dealer feels something is really wrong at the company, that maybe they have gotten rid of all the older, more experienced people in their parts department, and the new people in charge don’t know their jobs or how to read part numbers. What a joke. The reason I bought a HV machine was because it is the only machine I can get repaired locally. I love my dealership. All the people are very good and are really sympathetic with the problem. They are really hurting because they can’t get parts and do the repairs and get paid. I am going to write a letter to the company today to see if I can help my dealer get some action. Why don’t you all write to the company? The address is: SVP Worldwide, C/O Husqvarna Viking, PO Box 7017, LaVergne, TN 37086-7017. I don’t know what the name of the president is. I’ll let you know what happens.
Lets see where to start. The machine does say check upper theard quite often. When it works, it works well, but when it doesn’t it is a nightmare. The thread cut works sometimes but the thread hangs up and the needle has to be rethreaded part of the time. You can not clean the thing but have to take it into the shop for cleaning. I can replace the belt when it jumps off the gears but of course it is not recommended. If you start with a brand new needle and use the thread sleave, (that stupid little piece of net) it works better. I bought mine used but the 2600 was still a stretch. The bobbin jumps off the bobbin spindle when winding. You aren’t always told when the bobbin thread runs out. It makes bird nests very often. It is not a user friendly machine. The 3 D software can be used with microsoft 7 if you get the patch update which is sometimes called a “dongle”. Not a word for a farmgirl. When you go to shop for machines they show you how it sews on very startched white material. Anything can sew on cardboard. So all in all it is a computerized machine and sometimes things don’t compute. I have found that running a piece of dental super floss through the tesion guide will remove the threads lost in it. My thread tends to jump off the tension lever (that little thing that goes up and down at the top of the machine) If I slow the speed now it helps. Sometimes I just walk away for a while and give up. i won’t buy another by this company and I won’t buy another without taking my own material in to try.
I bought a Designer SE six years ago. I got it serviced at my dealership after 400 hours of emroidery. I have really been satisfied with the machine. At 600 hours on the machine it started having problems. During embroidery it would hesitate and stop. When I turned the handwheel one or several times it would start again and sew really fast for several stitches.
I took the machine to the dealer who I bought it from in my area. It has been in the shop for three weeks. They think the motor is bad and have ordered a new motor (cost: $60). I am anxiously awaiting the outcome.
I have owned my Designer I since 2003. As many of you have stated, it is a decent machine. Alot of money to spend on sewing…….I have had minimal problems, but upgrading is next to impossible since it is a hard disk and we live in such a changing world. I had not used it for over a year and made several Roller Derby outfits for my daughter. That project went off without a hitch. Now, I am trying to make a Christmas outfit for my grand daughter and only get straight stitches. I have no other utility stitches available on the screen. I hate the thought of being without my sewing machine as I do alot of projects now that I am retired. I do have a huskeylock, and that machine is never working right. Two HV machines and neither one are working correctly at the moment. I have a feeling I am going to be spending alot in repairs over the next few months. Anyone else have this problem? My sewing supplies are all in storage along with my guide for the machine which is my bible when doing a project. So, I am depending on the help of others to try and figure out what I am doing wrong. (or the machine is defective).
HELP!!! I could not find any trouble shooting on the HV website, nor could I find an online guide.
I have had nothing but problems with my SE. I was just about ready to put it away and never use it again. Breaking thread, needles and terrible looking stitches. My dealer was wonderful but I would get it home after they had it working and it would mess up again. Today I finnaly sat down with my book to see what I could be doing wrong. I have embroidery a lot of stuff so I am not inexpeienced. I had the Plus 1 and the Designer before upgrading to the SE so I did not read the manual like I should. I finally solved the problem myself. I was not threading it properly.
1. I was not holding down the bobbin with my figure and making sure it clicked when I inserted it.
2. I was using the thread holder that goes behind the machine and holds 8 spools. I do not think that lets it feed properly
3 You can not use large spools of thread. They just do not fit the holders properly. Sulky size works the best.
I can not believe the difference and it was my fault for at least a year and half.
I was a Husqvarna Viking dealer for many years. For the last ten years of my dealership the number of defective Viking sewing machines was staggering. I have been a high-volume dealer for Janome, Pfaff, Elna, Bernina, BabyLock, and Riccar.
Never in my thirty years did any sewing machine company put out anything a terrible as the Designer, Quilt Designer and SE. About thirty percent of the machines would not work well enough out of the box to sell. The company charged me, the dealer, the shipping back and forth plus a repair fee to fix brand new machines, leaving the customer in the lurch while their new sewing machine was being made to work. Often, the machines continued to have major problems.
I am, and have been for thirty years, a sewing machine repair technician in very busy stores. I have trained many technicians in all brands of sewing machines.
I am of the opinion that the only reason that this company continues to operate is that they make a ton of money on these machines. Compared to countless other brands of machines, I think that Viking machines are manufactured at a very low standard of quality for a low cost to the manufacturer and are marketed as a top of the line machine to make lots of money. If there are failures, it is just factored in to the cost. If there are problems, they have your money and will make the process of rectifying the situation drag on because it costs them money. I have not seen any attempts to redesign obvious defects.
When they work, they have superb features and do exquisite embroidery. But I think that the circuit boards and other parts are of very poor quality and will not last the test of time.
From what I have seen, I wouldn’t buy a Husqvarna Viking Sewing machine even at half the price.
I purchased this machine to replace an expensive brother, but would trade back anyday. This machine is terrible for the embroidery unit. Never seems to embroider a design correctly. hooping is a nightmare and non hooping is even worse. Very picky machine,my brother was so easy and you could use many materials and kinds of thread. Not so with this machine, has to have only their products or doesn’t work and even then I have only got few embroidery items done well and without headaches. I hate it so much that I don’t even try to use it. I would never suggest anyone purchase such an expensive piece of junk.
I have had problems with not one but 2 of these machines. In 3 years, my machine has been out of service. I have a total of 30 hours of embrodiery on this machine. They are all disasters! I have tried numerous needles, threads, and stabilizers. All I wanted to do was to add emb to my quilts. I have had 2 lemons, and would never buy from this company again.
I waited many years before trading in my Pfaff. The cost of the Designer SE Limited was a BIG decision financially for my husband and me. When it works , I love it. On the other side of the coin, it is a year old and has been in the shop three times and is waiting to go back for the forth time once the correct part arrives. It has been over 8 weeks waiting on this part. It has been a nightmare dealing with the shop where it was bought. The company hotline said they would research and get back with me. As of today, that has not happened. I was put on hold 22 minutes. Problems are needle position will not change and on the embroidery phase, the bobbin thread loops up. The only good thing I can say about this machine is, that at least I got through my granddaughters wedding dress befor it decided to break down again. For that I’m thankful.
We have owned a Husqvarna Designer SE for several years.
During these years the customer service at St. Johns Town Center needs MUCH improvement. They are limited in a schedule in assisting in resolving issues and holding training classes in using your machine. All they want to do is sell you an upgraded machine with a very low trade-in discount. You can comment all you want with your needs and it goes over their heads like a supersonic jet…. “Hint, Hint”
Please note: the center is not next to an airport.
Tech support is only through emails and there is no way to contact Husqvarna about needs or issues.
If you want answer you’ll get more assistance through Goggling.
Problems all the time. The dealer was absolutely no help. They tout that this machine does so many different things. How about just doing a few things well. I started on a Viking when I was a kid and it was a quality machine. This is not. I will never buy Viking again.
I have had my Designer SE for just over 4 years. It is awesome. I feel bad for the people who apparently got defective machines because they will never experience what I have so enjoyed about this machine–nothing ever goes wrong.
This is only my second sewing machine (except for my mother’s treadle that I learned on). When I got married in 1978 I bought the best I could afford at the time: a Kenmore that had both a button-holer and zig-zag! (Woo Hoo–very high tech after the treadle) I used that machine for almost 30 years and it was a great work horse and a good friend, but stuff happened and I regularly had thread bunching up, etc., that had me spending time with the seam ripper, adjusting tension, etc. These things are all in the past for me now. It is a very rare thing for me to have any problems that require a re-do with the Designer SE and when I do it is always because I did something wrong (like the wrong presser foot) and not an issue that requires an adjustment to the machine.
I love experimenting with the decorative stitches, the lighting is excellent, and I know this shouldn’t be important but just the sound of this machine running is pleasing to me–like driving a precision automobile.
I have had the machine serviced as suggested but otherwise have not had to have anything done to it, and it gets quite a bit of use. I’ve sewn everything from multi-layered denim to very sheer fabrics and as long as I have the right needle and presser foot I’ve been thrilled with the results.
I wish I had more time to fully enjoy the embroidery functions but I have barely tapped into them. The few embroideries I have done have been quite lovely and with no technical problems but if money were no object I would probably get a multi-thread embroidery machine and just use this one for sewing.
The only negative I have to add here is that I do not find the automatic needle threader to be very helpful. It is hard to get it lined up right and even once you get the hang of that, you still seem to have to adjust the thread placement by hand. By the time I have done all that I could have threaded the needle by hand and been on my way sewing. My eyesight is not great but the white shank and great lighting make it pretty easy for me to just thread the needle by hand. I’ve heard that Baby Lock has an automatic needle threader that is really excellent–however, I tested a Baby Lock machine as a second machine and it just didn’t have the solid powerful feel that the Husqvarna has so even with the needle threader disappointment I would choose the exact machine that I have if I were doing this over again.
I purchase my DSE in 2006. I like the machine very much. Only in the shop for annual checkups. I had a problem with needles breaking, however, when I put it in the shop the problem was the machine needed alinement. Since then no problem. The embroidery is very good. And when it wasn’t it was me not following the instructions giving by the machine. It has taken me these four year to learn to use the machine and the embroidery and I still don’t know it all. I am alway online seaching for user info. I took a class earier this year…the best money spent.
This machine is a great one. I have the Designer #1, and I was sad to know that it is discontinued, I need some cards. The designer SE, is a good machine, I haven’t had any problems, so far… I do a lot of embroiders, and I am very happy with every results. You need to know how to operate this machine. Take some classes. The dealers will be happy to assist you.
I love the Designer SE…however, I have to agree with the fact that there is no tech support and no way to contact Husqvarana about needs or issues. I have had the gear replaced in the embroidery arm (mostly covered by warrenty-I had to pay a hefty price for the labor) I am now having a time with the tension …will not adjust and have “loops” on both sides… Any suggestions? I can hardly bear the thought of another 6 wks in the shop….
I’ve had my Designer SE for 3 years. Only once had a problem with upper thread breaking. I re-threaded and it took care ofthe problem. Otherwise, sensational! Does an amazing job embroidering and sewing! My embroideries look totally professional. Love the selection of feet. It makes it so easy to do so many things! I get so many compliments on my sewing but it’s not me, it’sthe machine.
My first Husqvarna Viking bought 2008 was real lemon in the shop 14 months finally Sept. 9, 2009 got new SE and worked great for 3 and 1/2 months, went in for repairs Dec. 28, 2009, pick up bobbin thread, check bobbin, check upper thread, break thread, break needles. I got it back in Feb. 2010 embroidery 1 towel realized it wasn’t fixed, picked up bobbin thread and repeated check upper thread, breaking needles. Went back again got it back in March went back after another towel still same problem, with new problem the left stich is really bad. Got it back to store with same problem the Viking manager sent it to AZ for repairs April 4th and still not fixed. Call the manager today requested to either get this machine fixed by May 1, 2010 or return the amount that I have paid for all of the items to make this the most remarkably machine ever. I am disgusted, frustrated, mad and angry, I have about $10,000 tied up in this machine and have not used it enough to pay for the tread that I have purchased. The Viking store manager is excellent to deal with, she has beenoutstanding and wonderful, she is the only reason I haven’t sued them.
I’ve just spent $5000 on a new Designer SE last wk. I managed to get thru 2 sewing projects and then just today I started having trouble with the needle taking up the bobbin thread. I took the plates off an cleaned out the bobbin area, switched out the needle, rethreaded both the upper and lower threads, unplugged and restarted the machine several times too…but cant get the bobbin thread to catch to even form any stitch just sewing. I am very disappointed, if this machine is this touchy to perform simple tasks I dont want the headaches of tryin to troubleshoot it. My dealer shop is closed today, and I called the Viking hotline, my rep told me I’ve done all the troubleshooting that she would of told me to do and suggested I take it back to the dealer, I’m still within the 10 days to return it. So tomorrow mornin, I’m headed straight to the shop to return this. I plan to just keep on using my Viking 425 I’ve had for over 10yrs without any problems at all….Simple is just best.
have sewn with it as a regular sewing machine. Works great. Is there anyone out there that owns this machine and lives in suffolk county long island. I need a friend to talk to so that I can learn how to use the embroidery. Help. Thanks Rita email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Love my Designer SE LE, and new to me. I’ve embroidered some beautiful designs, but I had not used the bobbin winder. Recently, I purchased this used Designer SE LE, after having the Designer 1 which was really a great machine. Since I am new to this new upgrade, I’m having problems just trying to fill a bobbin. I don’t know what I’m doing wrong! I read and re-read the instructions to no avail. The instructions say that once I push the bobbin winder lever towards the bobbin to wind, I should get a pop-up to adjust winding speed drag, then I should adjust the winding speed. I do not get a pop-up. So consequently, I can not wind a bobbin to save my life.
Any help will be appreciated…. sincerely Evita
I have an Designer SE, I took it in to be repaired in November and now it is lost by the company I have called and e-mailed and they say they will get back bt e-mail and havn’t. The machine had problems from the beginning , it kept switching stitches in the middle of my sewing and then breaking needles. The sewing machine store closed soon after I bought the machine so I just worked with the problem until the board went out . Now I have no machine and a foreign company who doesn’t care about the consumer who paid $6,000 for a sewing machine . I am ready to seek legal action. How can I get this company to respond to me
My Designer SE seems really temperamental. The main problems I notice with it are possibly programming ones - tonight I have just spent an hour trying to complete an embroidery and got about 1000 stitches into to the 21000 before I gave up. My chief problem is that it brings up the “check upper thread” error box when there is nothing at all wrong with the upper thread and frequently I find that it actually means “check the bobbin” which is really confusing. (Most of the problems I’ve had with it aren’t actually covered in the troubleshooting guide in the owner’s book so I end up going back to the shop I bought it from and they tell me what’s wrong straight away.)
It has been backwards and forwards to the shop around 8 times since I bought it (for just under £4000 in 2008 - so for that price I expected it to work flawlessly) and most of the time this has been because the embroidery unit has had problems. The sewing side of it is fine but the embroidery unit and the bobbin thread are my main annoyances - the embroidery unit works perfectly when it wants to but at other times it can be hard to get 100 stitches embroidered in one go.
I love my Designer SE LE. I sold my Scandinavia 400 (formally The Rose) and I’m very happy with this one. We do have problems with the internet connection but not sure whose problem that is with. Husband seems to think Husqvarna is the culprit. Technical help is non-existent. I received a special VIP card with my first machine, meaning that I could call Viking for free technical help. Well guess what? I couldn’t find a phone number to call for this wonderful free service! Now that’s funny…Wish the company would get its act together and provide better support. That is really my only complaint. Otherwise, the machine sews beautifully.
I bought HV Designer SE 18 months ago and have regretted it daily …It is a LEMON, constantly in for repairs but never actually “repaired”. Do not waste your money on this piece of junk.
I previously owned a Husqvarna Viking Designer 1 and the Rose before upgrading to the Designer SE. I’ve had it back to the dealer 3 times and it still doesn’t work right I believe this is the most expensive LEMON I’ve ever purchased I would never recommend a Husqvarna to anyone I spent 7900.00 The service from the dealer has been okay not great but the mfg has been a nightmare. Wish I didn’t trade in my Designer 1 thought upgrade would be great NOT a good thing. I’ll also NEVER buy another HV anything. I’ve spent way to much money.
Love my S L, have never had a problem. Stitch quality is excellent. The embroidery quality is wonderful. This machine is a better machine than the D1 by leaps and bounds, but when you upgrade your machine there is a learning curve and you the operator must also upgrade with the machine.
Have a D1 that is amazing. “Upgraded” to the SE LE and it has been in for repairs 5 times in 13 months. On it’s 3rd motherboard. Repairs take weeks or months. HV customer service is non-existent. The dealer has offered me the option of trading in toward another make and model. Trade in? Wha??? Spend MORE money? Now that this lemon has been discontinued the resale value must be lousy. Hate this machine.
A long-time Husqvarna owner I bought the SE after the D1 which was fabulous. The SE has had problem after problem and the replacement machine I was given is the same. The embroidery quality and general performance is inconsistent and extremely frustrating. I can’t see myself buying another Husqvarna, if and when I can afford to get rid of this one!
My husband just got this machine for me and it too was a lemon from the start. The woman that sold us the machine was just as terrible and she treated my husband horribly during the whole process. Fortunately we did get our money back and I do not plan to ever consider buying Husqvarna again.
I would like to support Hartzf8 - I also many years ago owned a Husqvarna sewing machine - and it was my dream to upgrade to a new embroidery machine - well my dreams are shattered - my machine has never worked correctly from day one - it has been in for “repairs” at least 6 times - and has just broken down AGAIN I have requested a new machine to no avail. It has turned into a very unproductive - expensive lemon.
Excellent. Really Amazing. I have used this over year and never get tired of making beautiful designs.
I previously owned a Husqvarna Viking Designer 1 and upgraded to the Designer SE LE. Apparently the machine I got was a LEMON as it has been in the shop for repairs 4 times in 9 months. I regret ever spending $7,000 for it and prefer to use my Designer 1. The service and support from Husqvarna has been reprehensible. I have been a Husqvarna sewing machine owner for over 50 years and I will NEVER buy another HV.
I’ve always been a loyal Pfaff user, but I wanted to see what else was out there. I went to all the local dealers in and around my city trying out the many wonderful machines until I fell in love with the Viking Designer LE. This machine does everything but clean the kitchen!
Stitch quality is exquisite, however the machine operator has a lot to do with that. The noise when embroidering is not loud. Auto trimming jump stitches is awesome. The ability to go to the stitch number when doing corrections is also awesome. In short, this machine is awesome all around :)