Saturday, February 25, 2012

PS 150

I've uploaded Series 1, the instruction folder and the punchcards, for the PS 150 needle selector. Even though the PS 150 was created to be used with the Studio/Singer/Silver Reed SK150 and the other rebadged matching machines such as the Toyota KS610, it has been my experience that it works with any 9mm pitched machine. I.E. LK100, Brother 230 etc. Basically it's a manual device that allows for faster stitch patterning and generally used with non punchcard bulky machines. Because the cards don't advance the same way a punchcard machine advances, the cards are punched differently, but I'm thinking it's still possible to use it to read regular 12 stitch bulky punchcards if you remember to manually advance the card after each pass of the carriage. The card in the photo is the regular punch card no. 1, it fits and the needle selector tool reads the holes so it should work fine. This would also mean that you can use the standard blank punchcards (both 12 stitch and 24 stitch if you skip every other column) that are still available to punch out your own cards from the pictures.

I have it sitting on the back of my Toyota 650 bulky punchcard machine right now because I found some cards I had for it and wanted to play a little bit :)

Oh, when I use it with my LK100 machines, I have a board that I attach it to with screws so it's easier to use.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Knitting Motivation

On my bulky machine I've cast on to knit what is called by some an Idiot's Delight Trim, or Machine Knit Scalloped Trim. With some help from a knitting machine email group, I believe I've figured out the punchcard, the pattern was originally written for a hidden stitch pattern in the Brother electronic machines, and now I just need to set the punchcard and start knitting. The cast on has been hanging there for several days now. I think I might be afraid it won't work right or that I've made a mistake on the card and subconsciously I'm afraid of failing. Brother, nothing ventured nothing gained right? So, hopefully, I'll have something to post here soon, I'd love to get productive again, it's been a couple of years now since I've done anything significant with my machines. It's time to get MOTIVATED!!

Saturday, May 07, 2011

Back to the Knitter

Well, things have finally settled down enough around here to allow my creative juices to flow out into actual production instead of fermenting in my brain LOL!! I'm actually going to stop just talking about ideas and actually start knitting with my machines again.

I've been doing little bits here and there, Kris's Felted Clog slippers on the bulky for example.Kris Basta

Those were great fun and have added lots of ideas to the stew slushing around in my head. That and the fact that our weather has finally started turning warmer and sunshiny which always puts me in a better mood all together.

I'm also quite happy to see that the softer more feminine style of shrugs and lacy little bolero type sweaters and tops are still in style and I've been wanting to knit some up for my grand daughters too. Last year I obsessed on finding the right lace punchcard, I think I have it, the trouble was every thing lacy I swatched ended up having a "Hoochy Momma" look to it. Not appropriate for 10 year old girls, and I don't give a rats ass what Walmart or Hannah Montana thinks little girls should be wearing. It's too grown up and just plain "Hoochy Momma" for my precious babies, they grow up much too fast as it is!!

So, maybe this Spring I will be able to focus and get some things done! Oh, but wait a minute. It's Spring, that's my sewing time of year and I did get a new sewing machine and I really do want to get into quilting a cover for it........ oh dear!

Blanket Apology

OMG!! I am such a dummy when it comes to this computer stuff anymore! And to think I used to be a software consultant back in the day LOL!!

I have to apologize, I hadn't realized that there were all these comments on my posts. The settings in my email had them junked as spam, can you believe that? I'd have never known about all of these if I hadn't stumbled across these comments and questions while I was trying to find a post I thought I had saved as a draft. I'm so sorry.

I still don't know how to respond to comments, when I click on what I think will be the commenter's email address so I can write them, it says it's anonymous, and if I don't have the email, I can't respond. So, I'm very sorry. I didn't mean to ignore any of you and I'll try to watch it more closely now.

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Punch/Thread Lace

I recently acquired a Singer 500 electronic knitting machine. The reason I "needed" to have it was so I could knit punch/thread lace. Of all the amazing machines I own and use, none of them were able to perform this particular form of knitting, so of course, I had to have it. Talk about any excuse to buy another old machine. The irony is that if I had a few thousand dollars I could buy a newer SilverReed electronic machine that would have the ability to do all the things I want from my knitting, but until then, I have my collection of machines that individually do what I want. When I want DBJ and tubular knitting like socks, I use the doublebed, transfer lace from a Brother card is accomplished on my Toyota KS901, All In One transfer lace cards for the S/S/S/K machines are knit on my Toyota KS950 etc. I know, it sounds like a lot of hassle, but really, it keeps me interested in my knitting machines and designing different fabrics :)

My first test to see if this older Singer machine was knitting properly and that the electronics were ok was a huge success, there are a couple of miss patterned stitches, but that's a-ok, I've been advised that it's a sticky latch on the needle issue and I have lots of extra needles that came with it to replace them.

My next step was to design my pattern and color in the squares on the card. After I got my design transfered I decided to test it in fair isle. I love it! So, next came the punchlace test swatch.

After this mess, a good friend pointed out that my design didn't allow for any actual lacy spots. It was a great DBJ design, but "where's the lace part?" Back to the drawing board and a new and improved, punchlace design. Of course, all my self teaching is surrounded by lots of drama and this was no exception. I had spent so much time finding the right ink for my White 1602 mylars, I made the assumption that the Singer would use the same thing. Come to find out, the Singer scanners read reflections from soft lead, not light blocking ink. Oops! Wasted a very expensive blank card, but learned alot, and after figuring out what I had marked incorrectly on the card, another online knitting buddy helped me figure that little mistake out, I have SUCCESS!!

I still need to change out the bad needles, see the columns of stockinette? Those are the bad boys. I also need to fine tune my design, there are some places on the card that I need to shorten the number of unknit cotton thread stitches and change where some of the solid squares are, but all in all I consider this a huge success for my prototype. I'm going to space my roses out a little differently too, so there is a better balance on the panel, but this is where it stands right now. I also need to thank another knitting list pal for the gift she sent to me of the clear nylon thread so I could try this technique.

Since I'm moving soon, I had to give it up and pack up my knitting machines so I could concentrate on packing and organizing for the move. A list group friend gave me a really good laugh by ssaying she figured I would have at least one machine set up in the back of the moving van so I could knit during the long drive LOL!! Does she have me pegged or what!! Unfortunately, I have to drive my car with my kitty cats in it so it will be hand knitting at stop lights, traffic jams and waiting in drive thru food lines :)

Friday, March 20, 2009

White 1602 Doublebed Jacquard Experiment

WOW!! This is so cool! The top scan is the public side of a fair-isle design knit on my 1602 with the light scanning needle selection box. The picture is on the mylar, the machine knits it. Very cool. There are a few pattern mistakes, but they are in the same section so I'm thinking it might be that my mylar isn't clean enough, or maybe I need to check my needles in that section, or maybe I just need more practice. Either way, I am very very pleased and this piece will be a little purse/pouch bag. Not bad for my second try at this kind of knitting on this machine :) The first try was a bit of a disaster, it miss patterned everywhere accept in one column of the design, but I discovered that I hadn't centered the mylar correctly.

This is the back (non-public) side. I tried 2 different methods. The bottom one almost looks a little woven, the top one is nearly reversible and according to a book I have on creating machine knit fabrics, there is a setting I can use to create true reversible fabrics. Right now I'm going to bask in my success on this and figure out a project to use it on. I used to have a dream of knitting holiday afghans using this kind of knitting. I have a ton of holiday punchcards, I now wish I had holiday mylars. Looks like I'll be surfing around for clipart soon and trying out the picture knitting option of these machines :) Oh Boy!

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Bernat Softee Baby Sport DK

Well, this little experiment didn't work. I had swatched this yarn and it had trouble, but I thought I'd give it another try and just treat it like cotton, more weight, run the carriage slower and give it a good tug down after each row is knit, hoping that would do it. Well, I don't know if you can see it, but down by my hand it's quite obvious that it just isn't going to knit on my Toyota KS950 standard gauge. There were so many split stitches mucking it up, had they been more evenly placed, they could have been a design element. I was even careful to check each row for splits and re-formed them by hand. Guess I didn't catch enough of them LOL!!

This was to be another All In One Baby Caridigan, and I so wanted to knit it with this super soft cottony feeling Bernat yarn. I use Mary Lou's Solo all the time on this machine and I even knit a tuck stitched queen sized bed cover for a wedding present with Lion Brands new Baby Soft Sport on this machine. I should have saved myself the time and set up the LK140 mid-gauge :( The one good thing from it is that I believe I know why it won't knit when the other inexpensive readily available baby sport weights will knit on this machine.

Because it's just like cotton, it also has the same amount of stretch and give as cotton. None. No elasticity at all, so I'm thinking that this is how this particular machine gets away with knitting the tiny bit thicker yarns. The strand thins down and seats itself into the needle latch with the little bit of added weight pulling it down.

Now, this bootie was knit with the Knittery Bootie punchcard, using Bernat Baby Coordinates on the same machine, Toyota KS950 standard gauge and I also knit a pair using the Red Heart Baby Soft yarn that is about the same yarn. So you see? I had every reason to believe I would be able to bend the Softee Baby to my will, guess who one, yet again. I've pulled my LK140 mid-gauge out and am currently looking for a safe place to set it up LOL!!!

As soon as I quite screwing around and having all these "learning" experiences, I should have a few things to send off to my new grand daughter :)

Sunday, September 07, 2008

S.I.T. Cursor Stops/Carriage Release

This subject comes up quite frequently with new users. Especially when the knitter is used to Japanese machines that don't use cursors or the stops. It can be very confusing, so here is a couple little video's that I hope will help folks out. My camera only takes a few seconds at a time so I had to break it up.

Cursor Stops Part 1

Cursor Stops Part 2

Removing the Back Carriage

Please keep in mind that these machines were built in the 1980's and have probably been packed away gathering dirt and grime until it found it's way into your loving hands. The parts can be very stiff and require cleaning and oiling to work properly. When you are cleaning up your machine, be very careful to keep oil away from the copper strips on your cursor. They need to have a clean contact for the electric current to cause the needles to select.

The first time I played around with the cursor and the stops, I just knew I was going to break it. It was very very stiff and it took several passes back and forth, releasing and catching the cursor both directions before it finally loosened up and didn't jar my arms when the carriage hit the stops. I hope this helps newbies out, these little things can be so frustrating when we are learning something totally new :)