Well, I was thinking I should post a little update on the sewing machine status, just in case anyone out there actually cares.

My nifty, semi-industrial Janome Memory Craft has been sent off to the manufacturer for a closer look. I'm still without it for a few weeks yet. But, as my mother said, perhaps it will come home working better than ever. And in the meantime, my trusty Janome 525S is still humming along and get me through every project.