My first Bernina was a college graduation gift in 1976. The 817 was a battle ax of a machine made completely of metal – no plastic parts or body. It performed all the simple stitches I needed in life. Simplicity was it’s name. It moved all over the desert southwest with me from Texas to New Mexico to Colorado and back. Each move took a toll on the old girl. The plastic carrying case did not anchor the machine within it’s base and movers tipped it over a few times resulting in a few nicks and scratches. Then came along Buster, a giant Labrador retriever, who was petrified of thunderstorms. One day while at work, a storm rushed through the San Luis valley of Colorado and Buster panicked. He toppeled over the 817 and it landed right on its head. The damage unrepairable. Low and behold, a service shop in Alamosa, Colorado had the exact same model, but the motor was shot. I agreed to put my motor in it’s body to reincarnate my 817 to ever lasting life. The yellow paint square on the front, covers up the facts that the machine had been used in public schools to teach sewing. The old girl still works after 42 years. Some things are just irreplaceable.