flown with it and put it in an overhead compartment of an aircraft (several times). It took some upper body strength to wrestle it up and down, but I managed to do it without harming myself or any small children. (ha!) It's a straight stitch only-there is no zig zag. That's the one drawback, but definitely not a deal breaker. The auto cut feature is something that I turned up my nose at when I bought it, but now it's one of my favorite features. I MAY be a little spoiled by it. :) The first time I sat down to my machine I did some free motion quilting and it held the tension on both sides right out of the gate...no adjusting needed. Seriously impressive! I've free motion quilted MANY a quilt, and I rarely have tension issues. I can quilt FAST without the machine feeling like it's going to rattle off the table or rattle apart. It's not picky about the kind of thread I use, which is a huge plus, and it's got adapters for cone holders. All around, it's a simple, dependable machine.
In the past few years I have found it to be less dependable at straight line quilting. Layers shift more than they used to when doing straight line quilting. I haven't been able to get down to the bottom of WHY this happens...nor has my repair man. It's subtle at times and more pronounced at others. It bugs me! I have replaced my walking foot and it hasn't helped the problem. Maybe the machine is just tired? I don't blame it one bit. :) All that being said, I still use this machine with my walking foot to attach all my bindings to my quilts and it works well then. ????? I don't know what to think of all of that.
The TL-98Q model has been discontinued but has been replaced by a similar machine, which is the TL-2000QI.
One instance aside.) I have used it to do a lot of honeycomb quilting, too, which is a nice alternative to straight line quilting or stippling. I'm planning to sew more clothes for my daughter (and hopefully me, too) so the zig zag and over lock stitches will come in handy for finishing seams when that time comes.
A few weekends ago I tried to free motion quilt on this machine and it didn't hold the tension on the back very well at all (think ladder stitches) so rather than mess with the settings, I just jumped on over to my Juki. Someday I plan to devote some time to figure out that piece.
I've found that I am using both machines for different purposes, but both with enough regularity that I "need" them both set up at the same time. And I think that's a good thing! Also, my husband was in full support of me buying my Janome, but he did reserve the right to give me a hard time about it. Typical!