If you’re in the market for a multi-head embroidery machine, you most likely already own a single-head machine and are looking to upgrade. Or, you already own a multi head and need additional models to expand capacity. Either way, before making a purchasing decision you need to do your research. A brand new multi-head machine can set you back at least £10,000 – so it’s a big investment, meaning it’s crucial to get the best value for your money.
And so, carrying on from our blog comparing single head machines – which can be found here – we’re going to analyse the best multi-head embroidery machines Happy Japan and Tajima have to offer. We’ll pick the best of the best from each multi-head range and compare and contrast their specifications.
We’ll compare their looks, the speeds they can achieve, what their embroidery areas measure at, their technological features and more. Without further ado, let’s dive in!
First of all, to ease the complexities of embroidery machine investment, let’s identify and define what a multi-head machine is and what it’s perfect for.
A multi-head machine is an investment and also an instant upgrade for your business if you’ve previously been using single-head machines. If you’re looking to increase volumes and want to gain those bigger production jobs, then you need to choose a machine that can match your customer demand.
Multi-head machines offer between 2-12 heads. With each head, you can have up to 15 needles. With each one being able to hold a different colour. That gives you the ability to embroider at a much larger scale with more complex designs in a much quicker lead time.
Little to no downtime in your production offers you a more streamlined process and a higher value in return on your output. This is key when dealing with larger wholesalers and retailers; as these types of businesses move at a rapid pace with little budging on deadlines for suppliers.
For example, imagine you have a large bulk load order for sports t-shirts that need designs embroidered for branding, with a short lead time to complete the order. With a multi-head machine you can increase production power and reduce time pressures to complete the order. Consequently, you’ll gain future orders of size with clients, as it’ll prove that you can achieve large volume work at a high quality. Thus increasing your revenue and decreasing the staff costs you’ll need to run the machine.
Let’s start looking at the two leading brands. For fairness, we’re going to compare Happy Japan’s 8 head machine to its brand counterpart. This doesn’t mean you can’t buy models with differing head counts. You can. We’re just trying to call it down the middle.
Happy Japan – The HCR3-1508
The HCR3 is a high-speed, 8 head embroidery machine designed for larger and more complex production jobs. It’s the natural upgrade machine for a business that’s been running on one or several single head machines, such as the HCU series, or HCH-701P – as the increase in heads and needles immediately gives you more capacity and ability to produce a larger variety of products.
It has a maximum speed of 1,200 SPM, and a maximum flat embroidery size of 450x500mm – making it the industry leader in speed and giving you the ability to embroider onto larger garments at a more efficient rate.
As with all Happy Japan machines, the HCR3 has a completely wireless connection. The wireless feature also makes the machine much easier to move around and simpler to accommodate into a variety of workplaces without needing to replace the cabling often. Wired machines can become a huge problem in bigger warehouses that require multiple multi-head machines.
Another great feature of the HCR3-1508 is its ability to produce reports of operation. Again, this becomes a much higher priority once you step into the fast paced, hectic and sometimes complex work environments of larger embroiderers.
These companies are supplying national and international wholesalers and retailers. The types of clients that won’t tolerate losses and downtime, so ensuring maximum operational efficiency is crucial.
The HCR3 has a machine memory of 40 million stitches and up to 250 designs can be saved – although this doesn’t take into account the huge variation that can be achieved using the Windows software the machine operates with. This allows designs to be uploaded on the fly using barcoding technology – making it really simple and easy to vary designs job to job.
Tajima – The TMAR-KC Series
Tajima’s TMAR-KC series is the multi head machine that rivals the HCR3 – it also comes with 2-8 heads, but of course we’re focusing on the 8 head version.
The Tajima model comes with a 360x450mm Sewing area and has a maximum speed of 1,100 SPM. Both are inferior to the Happy Japan model.
Again, this is a machine built for businesses that are scaling and expanding into higher production requirements and larger production projects. It can be used in conjunction with single head machines as part of a more complex production line, too.
This model also has a colour touch screen panel for easy live operations, which wasn’t a feature of the single head model below it in the range. This is a great touch to add accessibility and makes the machine much simpler to use than in the past.
Once again, this comes down to embroidery area and stitch speed, as the Happy Japan model is superior in both areas.
- 1200 SPM stitch speed.
- Embroidery Area of 450x500mm.
- 1100 SPM stitch speed.
- Embroidery Area of 360x450mm.
So, if you’re making a buying decision based solely on the speed, garment size range and efficiency of the machine, the Happy Japan model is best.
Both machines share the touch screen panel, meaning both create a great user experience for operators and take advantage of industry leading technology. However, if you’re looking for the all-round perfect machine, the HCR3-1508 is the ideal machine for you and is far superior to the Tajima model – as proved by trials.
Time to Choose!
Overall, both models offer a great standard of embroidery – something you should expect from the two leading brands in the industry. They both sit at the forefront of technological advancement – using live reporting tech and wireless connections from PC to machine. The Happy Japan model is better suited to larger supply and production chains perfectly.
It really comes down to speed and size of product vs complexity of projects. The Happy Japan model is faster and has a better capacity for larger garments. But don’t just take our word for it! try the machine out for yourself before you buy. We offer a free trial period on all machines so you can make smarter business decisions.
If you do need some more detailed specifications or want to investigate more into what level of embroidery machine your business needs depending on requirements – check out our ebook to the right side of this page. It analyses the size of your company and identifies what head counts you might need and size of machine you require!