The Brother FS40 is a popular computerised sewing machine with great affordability, you would struggle to find a cheaper model that retains the same high quality. Due to the low price you would normally expect to be buying an average computerised sewing machine with limited features, however, that is not the case with this model.
The FS40 comes with an impressive 40 stitches, start/stop buttons (good for beginners), 15 needle positions, a very easy to use LCD screen and there is even the option of an extension table. Furthermore if you are in to doing a lot of free-motion sewing and embroidery the feed dogs can be dropped.
If you are thinking of investing in a computerised model the FS40 is a great option for both beginners and experienced users. The relatively cheap price of this model and ease of use makes it ideal for newbies. Furthermore the good range of sewing features make it an affordable choice for more experienced sewing enthusiasts that don’t want to spend too much. For more info on the brother brand read: Brother Sewing Machines.
In this review we will be taking a closer look at each of the individual features and assessing just how good this sewing machine really is.
Brother FS40 Review
The Brother FS40 sewing machine main features can be found below.
- 40 Stitches
- Five 1-Step Buttonholes
- Drop-in Bobbin
- 40 W Motor
- Stop/Start Buttons
The amount of stitches the Brother FS40 has is one of its main attractions. In total there are 40 stitches these include 5 buttonhole stitches, 16 decorative stitches and a good number of stretch/elastic stitches. All in all there is a good selection and more than enough for both beginners and the large majority of experienced sewers.
Below you can see all of the 40 stitches that you can do with this machine. If you are interested in this model but would like more stitches to choose from, I would recommend checking out the Brother FS100WT, which is an even more impressive sewing machine.
In terms of stitch length and width, the Brother FS40 has a maximum stitch length of 7mm and width of 4mm. This should be more than adequate for the majority of sewers needs.
What’s missing in terms of stitches on the FS40 is the ability to do letter embroidery. The machine only does straight and zigzag stitches of various styles, buttonholes and embroidered effects for topstitching.
Key Features To Consider Before Buying The Brother FS40
Before investing in any sewing machine I would recommend taking a serious look at the key features. It is only when you understand what a particular model can do that you know if it is suitable for your sewing needs.
Out of all the features the Brother FS40 has there are only two areas that it under performs, the first is with the motor. With a 40 W motor this isn’t the most powerful of sewing machines. Consequently, if your sewing consists of a lot of upholstery work it is worth mentioning that you will struggle with heavy materials. That been said, with the correct needle you will have no problem tackling several layers of material.
With regards to speed control the Brother FS40 is a versatile machine. This is due to this machine featuring both a standard foot pedal and stop/start buttons for controlling speed. The addition of stop/start buttons adds more benefits to this model than you may at first realise. Stop start/buttons are perfect for kids that can’t reach the foot pedal. Furthermore those with mobility issues may also benefit from a sewing machine with this additional feature.
By far the biggest advantage of this feature is the ability of having full control over your sewing speed. There are many times when this could come in handy, especially for the less experienced sewer working on a particular tricky part of a project. Being able to slow the speed down, still maintain correct pressure and full control will make it far less likely that you make a costly mistake.
The FS40 bobbing system has 3 features that I personally would recommend as being the best. First of all the fact it utilises the more preferable drop-in top loading bobbin is a bonus. Another positive is the clear bobbin cover allowing you to see how much thread is left. Finally the automatic bobbin winder makes things a little bit easier.
The most noticeable thing to say about the LCD screen of the FS40 is that it is a bit on the small side. It does have a few positives though such as how easy it is to use and navigate between the various stitches. In addition it will even show you which presser foot you should be using for the stitch you have selected. This is another reason I recommend this sewing machine as a good entry model, it is very easy to use.
Presser Foot System
I always find it a bonus when you get a few presser feet with your new sewing machine. The Brother FS40 comes with 7 in total all of which can be found below.
- All Purpose Foot
- Blind Stitch Foot
- Button Fitting Foot
- Buttonhole Foot
- Overcasting Foot
- Monogramming Foot
- Zipper Foot
Earlier on I mentioned that there were two areas where the Brother FS40 lags behind other similar priced sewing machines. In addition to having a not so powerful motor, there is also no needle threader with this machine. However certain versions of the FS40 DOES have a needle threader, so check your specific machine before buying.
The Brother FS40 is a compact sewing machine designed to be easy to use and provide good stitch quality. In terms of durability it is a bit of a mixed bunch, with the inner components been made from both plastic and metal. This may lead some to question its durability and longevity, the 3 year warranty should alleviate any doubts.The relatively lightweight and built-in handle make it very portable and a good choice for those that take part in regular sewing classes.
Compared to some sewing machines the FS40 is quite limited with regards to the accessories you get with it. It does come with a very helpful instructional DVD that explains in an easy to understand way, how to use the machine in the most effective manner. Watching the DVD will help to ensure that you get as much as you can out of this sewing machine. The Manual for the Brother FS40 can be found on Brothers website here.
The Brother FS40 is a good choice if you are looking for an affordable computerised sewing machine. With 40 stitches, stop/start buttons and a wide range of presser feet it offers very good value for money. There are a few drawbacks, such as the 40 W motor and lack of a needle threader. If you can live without a needle threader it is well worth considering.
If you already own or are thinking of investing in a Brother FS40, then please let me know what you think about this model in the comments below. Any useful information or input may help the next person to read this review come to a decision as to whether it is the right sewing machine for them.