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 Knitting Machine Talk
 Bulky or Chunky Machines
 KH230
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HopkinGreen
Chatty Knitter

182 Posts

Posted - 11/10/2006 :  12:00:59 AM  Show Profile Send HopkinGreen a Private Message
My husband and I are experimenting with a KH230 that we got off of ebay. We feel really lucky for getting this machine, as it obviously has never been used and seems to be in great condition!

The only thing is that we seem to be having trouble in using it for bulky weight yarn, which is why we got the machine. Does anyone have any tips or tricks for this? We're using every other needle. Would yarn spray help? (We heard it would, but don't even know what yarn spray is or where to get it.)

Right now, we're practicing with chunky wool-ease which says it is good for size 13 needles and is 9mm - which seems to be what the bulky weight machine is geared for. We have it on the highest tension setting - 10. It seems to drop stitches very easily and seems very difficult to knit for this yarn.

Anyway - any suggestions for knitting with bulky weight yarn would be great.

Thanks,

Elise

Bernie
Chatty Knitter

Canada
115 Posts

Posted - 11/10/2006 :  03:12:11 AM  Show Profile Send Bernie a Private Message
Hi: Even though it may look like a new machine if it has been sitting around for any length of time, the sponge bar, (also called the needle retainer bar) could be part of your problem. Bulky yarn, as in Mary Maxim Titan cannot be knit on this machine even at every other needle. Chunky yarn, as in Patons Shetland Chunky can be knit on this machine with no problems. Worsted weight yarn will work beautifully on this machine. My advice is first check the retainer bar and replace that. Also make sure you have enough weights on the knitted piece. Good Luck.
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HopkinGreen
Chatty Knitter

182 Posts

Posted - 11/10/2006 :  07:30:49 AM  Show Profile Send HopkinGreen a Private Message
hmm...

Well, worsted weight seems to work great on this machine... so I'm wondering if the sponge bar is okay?

I was trying out yarn that was 9mm, but claims it knits on size 13 needles. Considering that Mary Maxim Titan knits on 10.5 needles, I can see how I might be stretching the limits of what this machine can comfortably do.

Yet the specs on the KH230 says it can do 9mm... so perhaps not all 9mm or maybe not all 9mm yarns are created equal in machine knitting. Whatever the case, our KH230 seems to do great for smaller gauges.

I managed to order some yarn spray nevertheless, in case that helps in the future. There is a place about an hourís drive away that sells knitting machines and does maintenance work. We bought our first knitting machine there - the Singer LK150. It works beautifully. I know I'll end up taking all my knitting machines there for maintenance eventually. But for now, I'll probably run with the KH230 since it seems to be working okay. The one that REALLY needs help is our Passap Monomatic 20. That thing NEEDS repair! My KH560 needs maintenance work as well... So they're higher on the queue for getting professional help. The brand new LK150 and my old, but sparkly clean and pristine KH230 will have to wait a while before seeing the knitting machine doctor. I suspect any difficulties Iím having with them at all are just the result of my inexperience. Iíve only made a couple things so far on any of the machines and I look forward to taking classes in order to learn more.
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Bernie
Chatty Knitter

Canada
115 Posts

Posted - 11/11/2006 :  03:51:08 AM  Show Profile Send Bernie a Private Message
Hi: I'm not sure what you mean when you say- the machine can do 9mm yarn. The needles are 9mm apart. The LK150 is a 6.5 mm machine.
In the front of your manual for the machine it should show different yarn weights and a tension that should be used. (or at least put you in the ballpark as every machine can be a little off in the tension.)
I'm not sure if yarn spray will work or not. People I know who have used yarn spray, usually put the yarn in a plastic bag, spray some of the yarn spray in there, and then seal it up, I'm not sure how long they waited before using it. Other people have just put the yarn in the freezer overnight and had good results.
Bernie
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Shay
New Pal

6 Posts

Posted - 12/01/2006 :  1:47:47 PM  Show Profile  Visit Shay's Homepage Send Shay a Private Message
The Brother bulky does handle worsted-weight yarn very well, and, sometimes, a weight just a bit above depending on the elasticity and smoothness of the yarn.

As Leslie Salomon points out in "The Uncomplicated Knitting Machine," these machines were created to work at mid-tension, and they respond well there.

Mid-tension means worsted or thinner.

If you've ever seen the extremely fine yarns used on standard knitting machines, you'll understand why worsted would seem "bulky" to the engineers who created the bulky machines.

To use larger yarns, you could try the weaving method: works well for me.

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