Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Silver Reed LK140

The LK140 arrived today :) I am going to have fun with this one. I didn't realize that it had carriage levers to facilitate fair isle and other patterned knit stitches. I thought it was a basic machine like the Singer LK and HK100's, just a different pitch. The LK100 is a 9mm, the HK100 is an 8mm and this LK140 is a 6.5mm. I believe the only difference between this machine and the LK150 is the number of needles and it's a newer model. The newer 150 has 150 needles and the older 140 has 140 needles, hence the names? I'm looking forward to using the more available Bernat and Caron softee baby type yarns on this one. Even though the bulky machines can knit it, I've never really liked the gauge of the fabric when I used those yarns for baby outfits. I'll put a picture of a swatch up when I do one tonight. I have to finish the baby overalls I'm knitting on the Toyota first. Yes, I have self discipline, right! LOL!!! Actually I made a new sponge strip for it and I have to wait for the glue to cure overnight on the ribbon before I try it out.

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Brother Profile 588

The Brother Profile 588 is an 8 button pattern machine. You push the patterns, yank the crank to set the needles and run the carriage, the lace carriage miraculously transfers the stitches to different needles if you're making lace. I have a huge book of stitch patterns for it, the picture is my first lace attempt. I made a mistake, see the extra large hole? so I frogged it. I want to play with it some more, those patterns in the book are great and I think I will be able to adapt alot of them to the Toyota. It's really old, so old that some of the plastic knob things crumbled. They will be replaced, with polymer clay I think, but the mechanism that the knob slid still slides if you just move it with your hand so it's no big deal.

I bought this machine because I have all the tutorials, several books and patterns that my wonderful Mother in Law salvaged for me. I'll experiment more with it soon, but the punch cards are alot easier to use than the buttons.


Monday, September 11, 2006

White 1602

This is my White 1602. It's the same as the Superba machines and I have so much to learn from this baby. Because I didn't know anything about how to use this particular machine, I left all the goodies that came with it in storage in California. What a fool I was! It's an electronic patterning system and I can't wait to learn how to use it ( I bought this for a very cheap price on ebay about 4 years ago so I can only hope the electronics work). I've been experimenting with the racking feature and there are some very lovely stitch patterns that can be accomplished. Apparently there is a cassette taped instruction set, I believe I got everything for this machine except the cassette tapes so I have been depending on the gracious folks online and a basic manual to help me learn the machine.

My first racking pattern success, 2x2 rib to a Double Fisherman Rib.

Here are a couple more. I'm not sure what you would call this one, but I like it and the one below was a boo-boo. It was supposed to have the straight line between the wavey lines, oh well, I was still really pleased that I could do it at all.


Toyota KS 858

Yes, my knitting room is a mess... I've been re-organizing.. that's my story and I'm sticking to it. Anyway, I've ordered a couple of punch card design books for fairisle that contain designs for both 12 stitch and 24 stitch machines. (2 of my Brother machines take 24 stitch cards). I'm on the hunt for the lace carriage to go with this machine (I'm hoping to do business with Gladys Goody when she "migrates south" for the winter).

I love this machine, to date it is my favorite. There is just something about the way the carriage glides across the needle bed. I can't really describe it other than it just feels good and solid and oh so right. The push buttons are fun for small pieces, I get slipped up when I try to do more than a couple of feet of patterned fabric. You have to reset the buttons on every row, yank the needle set lever, then run the carriage and I seem to loose my place on the pattern. With the punch cards it's the same process but the cards take the place of pushing the buttons and since the holes are already in order as the card feeds, all I have to remember to do is yank the set lever before I run the carriage :)
This is the first punch card fabric I made on the Toyota. There is one spot where I forgot to knit two straight rows between the cars, other than that it turned out really great.