One of Janome’s most popular sewing machines over the last few years has been the 2160DC.

Recently, the powers that be at Janome decided to retire this workhorse and replace with the 3160QDC, which is capable of doing all that the 2160 can do and more.

Although it has been retired, I like the 2160 so much that I believe it deserves a close look.

At A Glance

The Janome 2160DC is a basic lightweight portable sewing machine that is capable of delivering 60 utility and decorative stitches and six one step buttonholes.

Janome 2160DC

Janome 2160DC


The most significant features available on the Janome 2160DC remain totally intact on the newer 3160QDC.

These features include:

  • 60 decorative and utility stitches
  • 6 automatic one step buttonholes
  • Adjustable stitch length and width
  • Extended free arm
  • Simplified navigation keys
  • Foot pressure adjustment
  • Superior Feed System™ (SFS)
  • Drop feed
  • Extended needle plate
  • Start/stop button
  • Built-in, one hand™ needle threader
  • Speed adjustment slider
  • Needle up/down
  • Auto lockstitch button
  • Easy to follow numbered threading path
  • Adjustable presser foot pressure

Working on the Janome 2160DC

The easy to follow numerical threading guide is so simple, a child as young as 10 years of age can thread the Janome 2160DC with ease.

The automatic needle threader is a great add on for those older eyes that have been sewing for many decades and now experience a bit of difficulty negotiating this tiny detail. The bobbin winding mechanism is just as uncomplicated.

Bobbin winding mechanism

Bobbin winding mechanism

The horizontal drop in feature coupled with the see through bobbin cover is designed with the user in mind, allowing for easy checking to determine if the bobbin thread is getting low.

Every stitch is clearly defined by its numerical assignment

Every stitch is clearly defined by its numerical assignment

Each stitch is clearly defined by its numerical assignment.

Once the machine is threaded and the bobbin is in place, selecting a stitch pattern is as simple as using the left, right, up and down arrows to toggle through the numerical stitch selection process.

A simple straight stitch is designated 00, which is the default setting when the machine is turned on.

Selecting other stitches is negotiated by moving the left or right buttons to determine whether the unit of tens digit is changed.

For example, to select an eyelet stitch, which is designated number 59, the user must first use the left arrow to activate selection of the number in the tens position, then the up or down button until the number five is displayed on the backlit LCD screen.

In order to get the change the number in the units position, touch the right arrow an then the up or down button until the nine appears.

The automatic needle threader, on board accessories case, convertible free arm, oversized needle plate with multiple seam guides, up/down and start/stop buttons give the user maximum flexibility when it comes to positioning fabric and actual sewing.

On board accessories case

On board accessories case

As with most other reviews, I opted to try several different stitch options, including the on board darning stitch.

I was pleased to report that all of the stitches I sampled were well formed, sturdy and evenly spaced.

Well formed, sturdy and evenly spaced stitches

Well formed, sturdy and evenly spaced stitches


  • Natural fibers/cotton-linen-wool
  • Fine fabrics/silk-satin-taffeta/velvet
  • Knits
  • Synthetic fabrics/blends-rayon-polyester
  • Upholstery
  • Leather/suede
  • Fur
  • Reptile skin
  • Canvas/Twill
  • Plastic/Rubber
  • Extra thick fabrics or multiple layers


The list of standard and optional accessories available for use with the Janome 2160DC is quite extensive.

Standard accessories that come with the machine are:

  • 5 Presser feet
  • Satin stitch foot
  • Zipper foot
  • Automatic buttonhole foot
  • Overedge foot
  • Blind hem foot
  • 3 Bobbins
  • Spool pin felt
  • Extra needles
  • Additional spool pin
  • Seam ripper
  • Screwdriver key
  • Lint brush
  • 2 Spool caps (1 large and 1 small)
  • Spool stand
  • Plastic dust cover/carrying case
  • Detachable extension table/accessories case

The seeming inexhaustible list of optional accessories available to fit either the Janome 2160DC or the 3160QDC includes specialty scissors; buttonhole a stabilizer plate; various sets of instructional DVDs an a broad range of additional presser feet, including:

  • Appliqué foot
  • Beading foot
  • Invisible zipper foot
  • Cording foot
  • Custom crafting zigzag foot
  • Ditch quilting foot
  • Even feed (walking) foot
  • Free motion quilting foot
  • Gathering foot
  • Pintuck foot
  • Piping foot
  • Ribbon/sequin foot
  • Roller foot
  • Rotary walking foot
  • Ruffler foot
  • Open toe walking foot
  • Darning feet (2 – 1 open toe/one free motion)


After each useMonthly*Once Each Year**As Needed
Clean race hook and feed dogs
Wipe head with soft dry cloth
Wipe head with soft damp cloth
Service by sewing machine repair professional

* more often if the machine is used for extended periods of time or if used frequently

**more often if the machine is used heavily or if it is not operating properly

Tying Off The Loose Ends

Despite the fact that it has been officially retired, the Janome 2160DC is still available at authorized Janome dealers as long as supplies last.

The manufacturer’s suggested retail price is $799. However, since this particular model is not longer being made, it is entirely possible to purchase one of these great machines at a discounted or sales price.

Accessories are also available at local Janome dealers as well as on line through amazon.

I believe the Janome 2160DC is a great machine for sewers at all skill levels.

Because the maximum speed is only 820 stitches per minute, it is an ideal choice for the beginner… even children who are just starting to learn how to sew.

Although the Janome 2160DC is not as fast as most other machines of its type, I believe it is also a good machine for anyone who likes to sew clothing, accessories and home décor accents, regardless of how long they may have been sewing.

The intermediate sewer would be happy with the Janome 2160DC because of the many stitch options and the ease in stitch selection.

The advanced sewer would also be pleased with this machine for the very same reason.

This machine is not only easy to use; it is easy to set up, lightweight and easy to care for.

All in all, the Janome 2160DC is a great lightweight, full size portable sewing machine that certainly deserves a closer look.

No doubt, this is why the 3160QDC is so similar to the 2160DC in its features, and functions.

Janome 2160DC Review
Link To Official Website
Skill Level:
Needs lots of help – able to sew a straight seam but unfamiliar with most sewing techniques; needs assistance and instruction on basic sewing techniques.
Competent – can make different clothing items without assistance or guidance, but not good enough to sew intricate projects or to sew without a pattern.
Expert – can sew anything without instruction or assistance; possesses an expansive knowledge of sewing techniques and terminology.
Stitch quality
Ease of use
  • Ideal for beginners
  • Lightweight
  • Universal voltage
  • Slower than most other machines
  • Recently retired
5.0Overall Score
Reader Rating: (1 Vote)

2 Responses

  1. E. Jane Relke

    I have a 2160 QDC, however I have misplaced my manual. Is is possible to reeceive another manual at little or no cost? I am retired and live on limited income.


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