knitting machine knitters...Brother?

Gladwin, MI(Zone 5a)

Hi,
I was wondering if there are any machine knitters out there. I was big into knitting machines years ago and then got out for a while. I have recently picked up a good used machine, but no one sells them any more and it is hard to find yarn and tools. I have picked up a few things on ebay, most are quite pricey. I am looking for a set of adjustable 7 prong tools, and an inexpensive yarn supplier. I have just been making some sweaters and hats for presents. I chart my own patterns so I don't need patterns, but it would be nice to have sources if I need needles or parts for my machine.
Thanks

Victoria Harbour, ON

I have 3 brothers, a 360 chunky, fine needle bed and an electronic...from what I understand brother no longer sells knitting parts...think they are going out of business...I've been watching and purchasing 2nd hand machines s that I have additional parts...

Gladwin, MI(Zone 5a)

I used to have 3 machines, after a divorce, moving, etc. I had to sell them all. I picked up a good used punchcard with a lot of extras I wanted. I did get a nice pack of needles in good condition on ebay. I steered clear of my beloved electronic, fearing problems and no repair or parts availible. The punch card does quite a bit.
Does not look like there are too many of us left. With yarn prices at an all time high, and not bad looking cheap walmart sweaters, there is not much demand for good custom made items.
Are you able to get yarn easily? I am getting it mostly mail order. I got some Tamm yarn, that used to be good, but now I find many knots in it and different thicknesses towards the end of the yarn, also color changes. I do not like this problem with an expensive yarn.

Victoria Harbour, ON

Funny, have an electronic that knits on it's own and still can't find time to set it up..the old punch card chunky though as paid for itself mega times over...

No problems with getting wool...about 40 minutes from my home is "Knitters Bazaar" and they carry every type of wool, even cones for machines...

I've been into decorative painting, woodworking and stained glass..shortly it will be gardening but I should get them oiled and into shape...

Sorry you had to sell some of your machines...

Gladwin, MI(Zone 5a)

I was ok with selling them at the time. I had lived in a big city and did custom knitting for people. It was getting over my head and could not keep up with the orders. It was getting not fun anymore. After moving to a very rural area, I kept only the electronic (and the goodies, garter carriage, etc) and after that I had no time or space anymore.
I like the punch card just fine. I did miss being able to whip up a pair of baby booties in a pinch, or a simple sweater in a day for a gift. My daughter had no intrest in it and now that she is an adult, came up to visit and made a neat version (her own) of a ribbed scarf for everyone she works with for Christmas. It took two visits and she learned to curse (ha) but she did well. She attached tags and everyone thought she had bought them.
I find myself only knitting in the winter now. It is much more fun.

Victoria Harbour, ON

It's been quite a few years the electronic has been put away, don't know if I'd know how to program it to knit/purl..should really take it out...I do not have any daughters and my DIL isn't interested in the least, so no one to hand it over to or teach...I had quite a few patterns that a friend of mine designed for baby outfits..when I moved I lost them all so not sure if I have the energy to redo...maybe you've given me a push to take it out from under the bed...

Gladwin, MI(Zone 5a)

I hope so. I hadn't knitted on one for 10 years and I was surprized at how everything came back to me. I have a needle transfer carriage that puts the loops back up from the ribber bed in one "swoosh" across. I found myself stumped as how to do it. I waited a second and I automaticly pulled extra needles out before my knitting. I had forgotten that you had to do that, but it seems I had done it so many times before my brain must have remembered.
It is fun after so many years to be able to make a special stocking cap, or match a sweater found in the store for a gift. Hope you find time to have some fun again!

Victoria Harbour, ON

Yes, I have same unit, always found it just as easy to do by hand..but that' s me..the electronic hasn't been used I'd say in 15 years..once my DH passed away (47) I got away from it, but I should look for a tiny corner of the world and set it up..have my brother chunky in this room covered and do use it from time to time so just maybe I'd get back to it...makes wonderful blankets..has over 2,000 patterns in it's memory and you just key in # and voila it knits back and forth on it's own..how much easier can you get..it's more the space than the time to set up I guess..but should do/will do...thanks for you posts...vry interesting...

Gladwin, MI(Zone 5a)

mmm, never saw that chunky. Got out of knitting before that came around I guess. That is really neat. I bet it makes beautiful blankets. The only thing I had to work by itself was a garter carriage, and you had to kind of babysit that. My bulky machine had no pattern stitches, but I did have a ribber for it. I did not use it very much. The most unusual thing I made on the bulky was a sweater for a guy who brought me loads of shed hair from his dog that someone spun up into yarn for him. It was a big white long haired dog of some kind. I made him a jacket sweater, shawl collar, etc, It smelled like wet dog when I steamed it. It was pretty, very heavy and I had white hair in my room for a year after.

Mississauga, Canada

Hi Every one I just bought a knitting machine Model 740 singer and a ribber SRP60N I also have an Intarsia carriage as well.. very excited about learning so any tips will help from my new friends.
I am also wanting to locate a wool winder, seems hard? also coned wool.. noted the knitters bazaar.. I use to live in Victoria BC

Gladwin, MI(Zone 5a)

Hope you have a great time with your new machine. They work very simular to the brother machine, but there are some differences. I used to teach knitting back in the 80's, so I will help you all I can. Like I said before, there are some things to be had on ebay, but some go quite pricey. When buying a yarn winder, try to get the larger one. I had the small version and updated quickly. The larger version winds quicker and larger amounts. Try simple things of course at first and get to know how the machine works, how the latches work, this will help you understand better how to fix an error instead of starting over, or sometimes eliminate an error. For example, if the yarn is not in correctly, your knitting falls off. Some settings will make needles in forward position not knit, or will make them look for a second color, if the second color is not there, knitting on the floor. It is normal to get frustrated. Everyone goes through that. Have fun and prepare to "wow" all your friends.

Mississauga, Canada

Hey: cpartschick
thanks so much for your word of kindness... I am looking so forward.. been calling around for a wool winder seems the best place is in Toronto... they range from 40.00 up to 200.00 so will see which one. Thanks for the tip on size that makes sense...
I think I will start with a baby blanket and work from there. I will be back with more questions I am sure, nice to know there are friends who can help...

Mississauga, Canada

I like the punch cards.. are they hard to work with?

Gladwin, MI(Zone 5a)

Machine's do the knitting, the computers, electronics and punch cards are for the pattern knitting (like 2 color, lace, tuck st). On old machines you needed to hand select needles for a pattern, then came push button that controled, I think 8 sts, punch card controls 24 sts, electronic 60st and so on. (this may differ on different brands) Punch cards are easy to use, a special punch is used to get the hole directly into the middle of the square. Each hole makes the machine select that needle in the pattern on your knitting bed. This pattern repeats or can be isolated. This gives you, lets say a name, or snow flake pattern on a hat or sweater. There is no end to what you can make. Straight knitting is by far easier than shaping of course, so a scarf or blanket is a good first project.
If you punch a hole where you shouldn't, a piece of tape can cover the hole and fix the card. I like the punch card machine for its ease, affordability and less to go wrong. If I want a pattern that is over 24sts I hand select it. It is harder, but can be done. You should have alot of fun with your machine.

Erie, MI

I have a Brother Electroknit kh-940 and a G carraige and haven't used it for a few years. Undortunately it isn't working properly and I can't find anyone to re-furbish it. Any help to get this fixed would be appreciated

Gladwin, MI(Zone 5a)

There are people that can fix these. You have to pack it up and send it, but I don't know where. I will see if I can find out.
If machines sit for a while, they usually just need a good oiling. I had a G carriage that would not work at all, after some oil, it ran fine. Also the machine I bought, the carriage worked very hard, after oiling the gizmos, it was ok again.

Mississauga, Canada

I now know how to cast on and use the punch card.. I just have to learn how to cast off...
It's funny you read the manuals but its info from others that help.

Thanks cpartschick

next will be setting up the ribber, maybe next week....lol...

Can you do the edges on a baby blanket after you have knit it to the size you want or do you have to finish it by hand?
anyone got some baby patterns out there you are willing to share?

Gladwin, MI(Zone 5a)

Sounds like you are learning alot already.
How do you cast on? I like to use the "e-wrap" method. This is done by starting on the left, yarn between the last two needles, and wrap back, then come up between the next two needles and so on across to the end. This wrap looks like the incursive "e". After knitting one row, carefully pull out the needles, holding on to first row, to make sure they knit on the next row, hang weights and go. This makes a really nice edge.
Yes, I like to crochet edges on blankets and things, sometimes also around a boxy jacket or edge of a skirt. Most sweaters and things have ribbing edge, or you can hang a hem. Should be directions on hems in your book. I like EON (every other needle) for 10 rows, then every needle (just put the needles into work) for 10 rows then hang hem. This gives a picot edge that is nice and really easy. Also by using EON at first the underside is thinner making the hem not so thick.
Make sure after removing your item from the machine to let it roll and stretch it lenghwise to set the stitches. The machine makes everything short and fat and you need to put it back into shape. A good steamer is very important.
I almost always cast off with the latch hook.
Starting at the right, hook latch hook over last latch on needle. Grab the stub sticking up through the needle bed and pull back dragging your latch hook with the needle backward. This slides the latch through the stitch and unhooks from the needle on the bed. Now just grab the yarn and pull through for one stitch bind off, you are ready to hook the next latch as it slides by (when you push the next one). This makes the nicest bind off.
If you are using crochet edge, you can use scrap yarn of contrast color and knit a few rows. Break yarn and run across letting the knitting drop. Then fold over at edge and crochet in the little loops, after just unravel the contrast scrap yarn. That is an easy way for a blanket.
I used to have all kinds of patterns, but let them go with my machines. I see there are baby patterns on the internet, some free, like little hats and sweaters to get you started.
I hope I could help a little, it is too hard to try to write directions, when this machine is so visual, but maybe some of it may sound familiar and might help.
good luck.
My easy stocking cap
Using medium wieght yarn (fingering weight) T-10 (kinda loose)
E wrap EON 65-0-64 (from needle 65 thru 64 on other side)
Knit 50 rows.
Bring ribber up and put EON on ribber in place T-8 and knit one row, hang ribber weight and knit 80 rows.
Move all stitches to main bed.
Knit 70 rows starting a pattern if desired at row 20. (stripes or fairisle)
Transfer every other stitch to the next door needle to make EON in work. Hang hem from EON at first row (this is the lining of the hat)
Knit 8 more rows at a tighter tension.
Break off yarn leaving about 2 to 3 feet for sewing and binding off. Using double eye needle remove stitches and gather for top of hat. Continue sewing up seam of cap, inside and out.
here is a picture of the caps.

Thumbnail by cpartschick
Mississauga, Canada

Wow what wonderful information... and I am going to print this off my friend and save.. it still seems like double dutch to me yet but I am sure it will sink in my head...
As you can see I am not at the machine tonight, I am fed up but will get back at it soon. I think I need a video or some lessons, I need to see someone in action. I am driving myself crazy fliping back and forth in the darn manuals and pattern book.
cpartschick, your really nice to give me all this info. I think I need to find someone in my area who has a knitting machine. I did make friends with a lady but she lives far away from me.
again thank you so much.

Mississauga, Canada

I looked for the sponge, and found it lol... I think I need to oil the machine. I am a bit down but I will keep trying.

Gladwin, MI(Zone 5a)

I use a spray oil and spray the underside of carriage well. Then take an old rag and wipe off the excess. All the little flippers on the underside of the carriage need to be able to work. If one is sticky, it can cause you problems. Also the plastic gears, brushes that turn, need to turn freeley. Sometimes you have to take a screwdriver and remove them, clean away build-up and then replace them. It is really simple maintaince. Makes a world of difference. I oil my machine really well before each project. Sometimes the extra oil will get on the bed while knitting and just wipe that with a cloth too, to take off excess.

Mississauga, Canada

Thanks cpartschick
your such a wealth of info for me...
I have an action plan this weekend.. I will do what you said and see if it makes a difference, I am sure it will.
soon pictures of my projects... well maybe in a few months..lol

Gladwin, MI(Zone 5a)

good luck!

Mississauga, Canada

I am totally fed up now. I oiled it all and I seem to be back at the beginning again with learning how to cast on. I need a simple pattern. I thought I could knitt a blanket, can't get much simple than, that... I even know how to work the punch card. I seem to get so far and then either the thread has caught on a hook and bunched it up or some stitches have been dropped or not knit? what may be casueing this?

Gladwin, MI(Zone 5a)

A couple things. Improper tension for yarn weight. Try going a higher tension, or a lower tension. Knitting bunches, with too high, drops stitches with too low.
Or not weighted properly. Usually only the ends of knitting need weight, but sometimes you need to maybe pull down on the middle after you get a little bit knitted, this helps. It may be hanging up, and getting in the way of the new row knitted. I usually pull the center of the knitting as I go, keep a steady weight on it, esp fairisle, this helps alot. The end weights also need to be moved up as you knit every 30-40 rows.

mmmm, also check all the latches, make sure they flop back and forth easy, you may have a bad needle or two. You can usually save a needle by bending the latch back (right or left) until it flops freely again. Bunching, not knitting and dropping stitches are alot of time due to a bad needle.

Some hairy type yarns give this problem, some yarns with a wrap of a different color yarn, yarn that is too heavy for the machine.
Some machines have brushes on the cam that you flip down when you cast on and for a row or two after, be sure to flip them back up after the first couple rows, they sometimes cause problems.
Also check to make sure your yarn is flowing freely into the cam. Sometimes it loops around and pulls hard, making these symtoms. Yarn needs a steady, soft tension on it to work properly.

When casting on those first few rows are the biggest problem, after that it usually works better. After the cast on, needles are all the way out, knit, pull needles out again, holding back towards the bed the knitted row, this MAKES the needles knit. If you do this the first couple rows it should help.
A blanket is easy, but....it is using alot of needles at one time which can be a challenge. How about a scarf as a first project?
A 28-0-27 ribbed scarf by 500 rows is easy and nice, once you get the ribber going, but before then, how about going 45-0-45 knitting lenght and sewing up a side seam and adding fringe on ends. This would be good for fairisle, or plain knitting, stripes, with the wrong side to the inside, both sides would be pretty.
Hope you can find the problem. I think you are headed in the right direction.
Years ago. I took my first lesson. Everything worked great, then I went home. I could not get the blasted thing to do anything but knot yarn and loop all over. I cried. So do not feel bad. We all have been there, even with someone to show us. You are doing well for doing on your own!

Mississauga, Canada

A couple things. Improper tension for yarn weight. Try going a higher tension, or a lower tension. Knitting bunches, with too high, drops stitches with too low.
Or not weighted properly.

Ann writes: Yep I was checking the tension - thanks all this makes me think I am not so stuiped as I think I am... lol

Usually only the ends of knitting need weight, but sometimes you need to maybe pull down on the middle after you get a little bit knitted, this helps. It may be hanging up, and getting in the way of the new row knitted.

Anns writes: Yep I did that and ialso in the middle of the project as well.... and yes I was doing that as well pulling it down and it seemed to work..

I usually pull the center of the knitting as I go, keep a steady weight on it, esp fairisle, this helps alot. The end weights also need to be moved up as you knit every 30-40 rows.


mmmm, also check all the latches, make sure they flop back and forth easy, you may have a bad needle or two. You can usually save a needle by bending the latch back (right or left) until it flops freely again. Bunching, not knitting and dropping stitches are alot of time due to a bad needle.

Ann writes:
Hairy types, that me.... yep has a fleck in it.... and yes I flipped the brushes

Some hairy type yarns give this problem, some yarns with a wrap of a different color yarn, yarn that is too heavy for the machine.
Some machines have brushes on the cam that you flip down when you cast on and for a row or two after, be sure to flip them back up after the first couple rows, they sometimes cause problems.
Also check to make sure your yarn is flowing freely into the cam. Sometimes it loops around and pulls hard, making these symtoms. Yarn needs a steady, soft tension on it to work properly.

Ann writes: yarn seems to be fine.. and learnt not to catch it on the white wheel

When casting on those first few rows are the biggest problem, after that it usually works better. After the cast on, needles are all the way out, knit, pull needles out again, holding back towards the bed the knitted row, this MAKES the needles knit. If you do this the first couple rows it should help.

Ann writes: explain again.... I pull all the needles forward run them over the the cam and then every other one comes forward to do the cast on right. Pull the needles out again where as if your casting on again? "people don't laugh at me"
A blanket is easy, but....it is using alot of needles at one time which can be a challenge. How about a scarf as a first project?

Ann writes - Yes a lot of needles.... and there do seem to be two trouble makers together.....
A 28-0-27 ribbed scarf by 500 rows is easy and nice, once you get the ribber going, but before then, how about going 45-0-45 knitting lenght and sewing up a side seam and adding fringe on ends. This would be good for fairisle, or plain knitting, stripes, with the wrong side to the inside, both sides would be pretty.
Hope you can find the problem. I think you are headed in the right direction.
Years ago. I took my first lesson. Everything worked great, then I went home. I could not get the blasted thing to do anything but knot yarn and loop all over. I cried. So do not feel bad. We all have been there, even with someone to show us. You are doing well for doing on your own!

Ann writes;;; I did have a laugh at your lesson and then home time.... sorry
Do you MSN then again you may not want me to bug you....lol


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Gladwin, MI(Zone 5a)

Ok, now I am confused. Looks like you checked a lot of things, one question was about the pulling out of the needles during the first rows. I do not use the cast on that you are doing. So that is probably why you were confused on that. I was trying to make sure all the needles knit. It is easy to see if they don't, after you knit a bit and can see the needles that look different. If you see one or two that didn't knit, you can just use the needle to knit it manually and fix as you go. This may be in your manual too.
I think you are learning much more than you think, and you are on your way quite well.
I don't MSN, I am on the computer a couple times a day at most to check emails and see what is up here, ck weather etc.
There is so much to the machines, the brushes, buttons, needles, tensioners, dials, you know, that having someone right there to help and see would make a huge difference. It is so hard to try to help without seeing.
It is ok to laugh about my frustrations years ago. I tell you even now, there are some days that machine is better left alone, and some days I can knit a whole sweater in three hours. I don't know if it is the mood of the knitter or the mood of the machine. LOL.
I will keep trying to help if I can and mention things to ck. I wish you luck.

Mississauga, Canada

Thanks so much you don't know how much help you have been... I am still reading and and learning.. I found out a co-worker has been knitting on a machine for years and lives in the next town over... I hope that she will give me a few lessons if and when she has time. You are right it is better to have a live person beside you but you have been great and a big help. Let me see what you have made I'd love to learn from the best.....
Have a great day.. by the way I knitt almost half a blanket last night, no problems except that a few stitches did get caught and I looked in the book on how to pull a few rows I was ok going from my right hand across to my left side but did not know how to pull the other row back.. as it turned out they had just caugt on the bigger hooks and I could have released them as I did and continued knitting. Instead I pull the thing off and now don't know how to cast it back on? Oh well I will start again.. but must learn these things and of course the hard way... lol...

Gladwin, MI(Zone 5a)

Yes, that is the first thing you learn is how to fix stuff. Knitting is so fast sometimes it is easier to start over.
I used to be pretty good at it years ago. I can't say that I am an expert. I was pretty close to one about 20 some years ago but
I am afraid that I have forgotten most of it, but can still do some fun stuff.I used to have pictures of all my items. I made some really nice stuff in the past, from fancy dresses, pleated skirts, doilys, lace tops, suits, costumes, to 101 small smurfs.
Sounds like you have a good attitude about it, and not letting it get you down. I think someone to help would be great, although sounds like you are really getting it. Keep me posted and I will try to find some stuff to take pictures of.

Las Vegas, NV

Help. Is there a way to make yarn overs (yo) on knitting machine. I want to duplicate the Ridged Feather Stitch? Making a Christening dress for granddaughter and they moved up the date.

Gladwin, MI(Zone 5a)

Yes, I believe so, just by transfering a stitch onto a neighboring needle (2 sts on that needle) and leaving the empty needle in work, knit 2 rows. That is what a lace carriage does automaticly. If your YO is increasing a stitch, you would have to move your work all over one stitch and leave the empty needle in work.

Gladwin, MI(Zone 5a)

Ok, I said I would try to send some knitting pictures. I have not taken any pictures this time around, and gave the best stuff away. I dug around the house and found this old tablecloth (from the old days) and a triple silly ski hat that was my daughters.

Thumbnail by cpartschick
Gladwin, MI(Zone 5a)

This is a simple suit jacket and shell with crochet trim.

Thumbnail by cpartschick
Gladwin, MI(Zone 5a)

Here is the skirt, with slash pockets.
(hanging on top of the jacket, if you are wondering about the arms) :)

Thumbnail by cpartschick
Gladwin, MI(Zone 5a)

Here is a super simple sweater, what I call the 3 hour sweater. If everything goes right, that is about how long it takes to make.

Thumbnail by cpartschick
Marquette, MI(Zone 5a)

Your tablecloth is lovely. And so are the other items, but the tablecloth really caught my eye.

Gladwin, MI(Zone 5a)

Thank you. The table cloth has a few moth holes in it after all these years that I need to repair. I made it in 3 strips and then crocheted it together with chain links. There is no end to what you can make with a knitting machine, time, and imagination.

Mississauga, Canada

Does anyone out there have any simple baby sweater outfits with hat and booties they would be willing to share with me. I have not been able to get any patterns and not made anything on my machine yet. Please anyone?

Gladwin, MI(Zone 5a)

No, I don't have any baby patterns. (wish I did)
I find mostly that making baby or childrens things are just as difficult as making an adult item.
There are the same decreases, shaping etc, and it is tiny and even sometimes harder to do.
I once had a pattern for a little sleeper. It was just an eyelet at the bottom with a cord through to gather, straight knit up and raglan sleeves. A real popeye sweetpea type thing. Cute.

Wish you lived closer. Sure could help you out in making your own patterns, and showing you how to make that machine work.
Would be glad to spend the day with you if you ever got down this way.

Mississauga, Canada

I found a webpage of a person in BC so going to see what they have if anyone is interested I could post the website?

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