My first machine had a panto shelf so I was used to the front of the machine right from the start.
Usually if you are quilting following a pantograph (paper pattern) you have to be at the back of the machine, that's why longarms usually have another set of handles with controls at the back so when you are quilting a pantograph you watch the lazer and not the machine. I have always hated being at the back of my machine! In my room with low coombed ceilings it's awkward and claustrophobic, I have to pull my machine and frame out from the wall, having a slipped disk problem that is sometimes impossible, that frame is big and heavy and can't stay out in the room permanently!
Now that I am doing some quilting for customers I am doing a few pantographs rather than all custom work. I was not a happy quilter, I like to be up front where you can see what is happening with the fabric and thread.
So, with the encouragement of my friend Kath this is what I came up with, a Panto Cam/Tension Nanny.....in other words two mini surveillance cameras connected to a monitor so I can do a panto from the front and check on my tension right from the monitor....don't be fooled it's not a computer system but will be a great help until I win the lottery and can afford one...lol...!
There's a bit of a learning curve hand and eye co-ordination wise so I had a practice on some fleece before going for the real thing on a customer quilt.
I am not the first to do this there are a few different systems out there in longarm land but none designed for our power supply here in the UK so I just collected up one or two things and put it together!