First, Welcome to About Knitting Machines,
a source of information for you about knitting machines
And you ARE at the right place it just looks different. GoaDaddy is migrating to a new platform so I had to completely redo this website from scratch. Not "migrate" but actually REWRITE the ENTIRE site, pictures files, downloads, links and all, so since I had a do-over, I decided to streamline. ALL the information about yarn and knitting machines is still here, but I have left out sections that did not get much traffic like the Magic Formula and Pattern Drafting. All files, manuals, magazines etc... for download are still her and still FREE and will always be FREE, and the site is restructured for easier access to the information you need. I will no longer answer any email as everything I know is on this site. The only email I will review is if it offers me information, brings my attention to a correction, or offers something for free such as a manual or magazine to post. Spam is filtered out and I do not accept solicitations of any kind, your email is then automatically blocked.
If for some reason you are having a hard time viewing this website in a browser, it seems to work best with Google Chrome
Now let's begin...
When I first started knitting it was by hand, and while I liked the hobby, I decided to try knitting with a machine. To my amazement, it was very difficult to find information and when I did it was piecemeal, all over the web and sometimes contradictory. So, after looking around the net for a few years and after selling and buying knitting machines I decided to put together a website with as much information about knitting machines, in ONE PLACE, that I could find online. This site is a repository of information that is found on the internet about knitting machines and yarn in one place and a few snippets of that I have learnt. I do not copy write anything as this is a informational and educational site only.
I do pepper this website with a few opinions, my experience, personal recommendations on vendors, what to look out for, who might be difficult (vendors) and a few warnings. I want to bring to your attention that no vender can pay me to list them or promote them, anyone in the Preferred Vendors list or anywhere on this site is mentioned because I have heard really great things about them consistently. Anyone that is mentioned and does not have a stellar review is because the opposite has happened.
You can use this information as you wish, which includes sending it to others or even on your own site as long as you DO NOT charge for it. My goal is to keep machine knitting alive and this site has all the information that I know about knitting machines, so I do not answer questions. I also have tons of Kitting Machines Magazines FOR FREE and Manuals in with each type of knitting machine made and addition to FREE Punch Card Pattern Machines and Pattern Books for any machine.
TO BE CLEAR: I am not profiting in any way having this site, I DO NOT state that I am an expert or a dealer, they are much more knowledgeable that I am. I pay for everything and charge nothing. I keep this site up with MY time, MY money (hundreds of dollars). If you send an email to amend inaccurate information, add info or add magazines or manuals to the sites library, I will correct misinformation and add items when I have time, at my discretion. Hate mail is deleted by my spam software. Please do not email me and ask me to take down any links to all the free stuff because I won't. I am not breaking any copy-write laws by posting these items for free and I have checked with an attorney. I know that some of you sell these items, but let's face it, you probably got most of them for free.
If you have questions about knitting machines and any issues that you are having with your knitting machine and the answer is not on this site, please contact a dealer from the Vendors Page. Tammi, who owns Knit & Sew, is probably the most generous with her time and very honest. If you have a questions about knitting, I suggest contacting a vendor or join a knitting group that is open to questions and not just a sales group or a guild.
This site contains information about yarn, knitting machines, types of models and makes of knitting machines, descriptions on machines I am most familiar with or could find information on in the internet. To see a list of items, links, vendors, websites and other items that I think are the best of the best I list them on the page: "BEST of the BEST"
I have listed excellent yarn stores to buy yarns from, a list of knitting machine shops that you can trust for sales and the repair of knitting machines, a list of other vendors that offer support items, dvd tutorials and books that you would be interested in, to include DAK tutorials and other items. A couple to mention up front is Needle-Tek, the best place for repairs and they have knitting machine items. The best place for great prices on used equipment from someone you can trust is Custom Knits and Manufacturing (they also have new stuff). For PASSAP Knitting Machines ask for Tammi Noble at Knit & Sew, but she also carries Brother and Silver Reed/Studio knitting machines. Cathie's DAK Tutorials are the best in the market bar none to learn DAK and vendors who carry excellent knitting machine tutorials on DVD, so that you can learn in your living room as if someone was there with you. There are not too many places in the US where you can get lessons, which usually cost you at least $50 an hour. DVD tutorials should be around $35 to at MOST $50, but you usually can find them all for $35 and under.
EXCITING NEWS!!! Through new technology, 3-D Printing has arrived to the knitting machine. New and Affordable Garter Bars for all gauges are available now. Check them out on the Knitting Machine Business Page. Just enter "garter bar" in the search button on their website. They are actually printed in a special 3 dimensional printer and are made out of a plastic of some kind. I had seen this and knew about it in the fashion world, but never thought of it for garter bars, but someone did. You can actually get them in different colours!
TIDBIT: USED VHS AND DVD TUTORIALS FOR KNITTING MACHINES. New ones are out in the market, but are limited. There are a few really good ones, from Diana Sullivan. Used VHS tapes are still viable if you have a player and I think fine to buy but can be really worn out from playing and also re-taping and selling. Used DVD's are also ok, just make sure you are NOT pirating, but there is no law that says you cannot resell what you bought, you just cannot copy and then charge as if it was new. ALL the old Brother and Silver Reed tutorials, usually found on VHS are perfectly ok to buy and sell at will, you will know because the hair styles and clothes are really outdated from the 1970's and 1980's and you can charge what you want. Some may disagree but you can also re tape them and sell them, but be careful that there are no copy write issues, as in the person is still alive. I am talking about the really, really OLD tutorials and never ones made by any fiber artist such as Susan Guagliumi, Diana Sullivan, Cathie Sanders or others. They are almost always named "by" Brother, KnitKing, KnitMaster, Studio, Studio by White and sometimes Silver Reed. If in doubt, just do not do it, for instance Donna Seitzer is still copy written.
Another tutorial, or should I say text, about creating patterns is worth mentioning up front is "CHARTING by the MAGIC FORMULA" by ALLES and published by Country Knitting of Maine. This is an invaluable workbook and explanation, written for anyone to understand and a must have if you want to make your own knitting patterns. Another text by Shirley Paden called "Knitwear Design Workshop", which you can buy anywhere including Amazon, is a must have to understand how to make a knitting pattern. There is a lesson on the Magic Formula in the Download Section.
One area that I think is a must read is the Knitting Machines Patterning Systems & Software page in the "About Knitting Machines" section. It explains how knitting machines with built in stitch and garment design patterning systems work and also explains what other options are out in the market to include knitting machine software that can actually interact with your knitting machine called DAK (DesignAKnit) and you can read about DAK on it's own page with COCHENILLE Knitting Software. COCHENILLE is a very robust software suite that you should consider, you just cannot knit from screen with it like you can with DAK. The pattern systems section also discuses what options you have for knitting machines with no or limited stitch and garment pattern systems. It is very important for you to understand how these systems work so that you do not waste hundreds if not thousands of dollars on software and systems that you either will not use, cannot use or do not need. It is a lot of information but well worth the read for that reason alone, then when you understand how patterning systems work you can then decide if the $30 software is best over software that costs $1,500. And by the way, the $30 software is very robust, so do not let the price tag fool you into thinking that just because it is "inexpensive" it is "cheap", it actually is great and you may not need anything else.
A word about buying; I would encourage you to join YAHOO groups that are dedicated to knitting machine enthusiasts, there you will get the best deals. BUT, these groups also have their issues and I would encourage you to read what I think about YAHOO Groups on the this page: "About YAHOO Groups". Also, you should read the page on Internet Buying & Selling and how to protect yourself. As far as Buying off of auction sites, while eBay does offer a wide selection, their prices are over inflated because the seller has a lot of fees to pay eBay, hence sellers inflate the price of the machine or shipping charge in order to cover the cost of eBay fees. With that being said, you should NOT use eBay as means to measure what a machine cost or what it is worth, as I said the prices are very inflated for the most part. Buying from eBay also does not guarantee that you will get what you paid for. I also would encourage you to read about the different models first, understand what you are purchasing and then read the tutorial on what questions to ask. In each knitting machine manufacturer section, Silver Reed, Brother, PASSAP etc... I have included a price guide for you to be able to make an informed offer. I personally recommend the following YAHOO Group when in search of a knitting machine or looking to sell something as it is dedicated to just the buying and selling of knitting machines, knitting machine accessories and yarn for the machine knitter:
For Sale Knitting Machines Yahoo Group
HOW TO USE THE SITE to BUY a KNITTING MACHINE:
My aim with this site is for you to have as much information about knitting machines as possible, the different models, manufacturers, gauges, styles and information on how they work, if they use software etc...
1. Usually, you will first decide what type of yarn you mostly use like fine yarn or thick yarn most of the time, or something in the middle or maybe you use a variety of yarn types, this will dictate knitting machine gauge, which you will read about in the "About Yarn" section. Also, there is a lot of yarn information, off course, in the "About Yarn" section.
2. Then read about how knitting machines work in the About Knitting Machines section, so you get a good understanding of what you may want or need, a punch card, a manual starter machine or electronic/computerized knitting machine, then....
3. You can decide which manufacturer you like best such as Silver Reed/Studio, Brother,PASSAP, Artisan etc... given price point and/or variety of machines and then...
4. Finally, you can decide on which knitting machine model to buy, such as a Brother 965i or Studio SK860 knitting machine, with or without a ribber.
That is not only the most logical but also the most cost effective way when making a decision on which knitting machine to buy as you can spend thousands of dollars or as little as $300. Also, knitting machine prices really do not fluctuate that much, so my price guides are what I would and have paid AT THE MOST for the knitting machine, you can always offer less or more. Also, in 2015 there has been a spike in the cost of a knitting machine, i am not sure why, I know that the Silver Reed Mid Gauge was discontinued so the price is a premium one, but for the other I really do not know. If used, as in ALL Brother, Toyota, Elna, and the Studio line from Silver Reed, the condition of the machine is what matters most and I have spent more on two occasions but it was for something in excellent condition or like new condition and have also been patient and found great deals on well maintained machines for a lot less. Even a lot of the "Silver Reed" machines out there are used.
Also, visit the page titled "FOR YOUR INSPIRATION", which are knitted designs to inspire your knitting once you get your knitting machine, really some amazing designs.
A Place for Knitting Machine Enthusiasts
Industrial Flat Bed Knitting Machine