Tuck stitch/ combination fabrics


Work in progress

I am presently attempting to knit my samples using a 910 with an EMS kit ayab interface. When possible I will provide punchcard and electronic repeats, and an Ayab repeat for each.

White squares in first chart represent tuck stitches, the dark blue row, the pass that knits every stitch, the lighter blue the pass that knits and in turn drops every stitch. The main knitting is happening on the top bed. Loops and dropped stitches are formed on the ribber. This pattern is not suitable for use with color changer, since patterning for each of the 2 repeat segments occurs over an odd number of rows (7 each, for a repeat total of 14). Punchcard knitters repeat X 3 in height, electronic knitters use only one of the 2 repeats, outlined in red.
Preselect first row of pattern from either side on a punchcard machine or an unaltered 910, from left if using ayab.
*With the KC set to tuck <– –>, the ribber set to slip <–  –> knit 6 rows. The last row will be all knit (darker blue).  Cancel slip on the ribber carriage, setting it to knit  <– –>
knit one row on both beds to the opposite side (lighter blue, preselection will happen for the first tuck row in the next sequence). Disengage the ribber carriage still set to knit from the KC, take it across the ribber bed to release the loops. Reset the ribber carriage to slip <—->
move carriage back to reconnect with the KC. ** Tuck sequence begins again. Repeat  * to ** ayab repeat for 30 stitch swatch, requires color invert same repeat, not requiring color invert after loading into softwaretuck fabrics are usually more interesting on their purl side

Machine knit bind offs, single and double bed

WORK IN PROGRESS

A DBJ discussion re Ayab use recently brought up the topic of ribber bind offs. My plan for this post is to gather information and illustration on a variety of methods, beginning with those illustrated by Brother, then moving on to others I have come across over the years in a variety of publications.  Once the ribber stitches are moved to the top bed, any single bed bind off may be used, whether through single or double loops. Some techniques produce more pleasing results than others. For folks that prefer to view videos, these are some offered by others on this topic:
latching off through looser stitches any KM, my least favorite,
wrapping around needles , familiar to Passap owners
several sinker plate bind offs. The very last method illustrated is my favorite go to, around gatepegs whether single, double or more, though I do it a different way. The version in this video seems slower and more clumsy to me

This edited illustration, also from a Brother manual, shows how the yarn is threaded through the stitches in numbered sequence according to stitch configuration for the ribbed fabric

Other approaches to binding off with needle and yarn: working single bed this is sometimes performed on the machine seen here working from left to right. It is referred to as back stitch or stem stitch sew off method, and is illustrated in many of the old machine knitting manuals. It is easier to achieve if after the knitting the last row one knits at least 2 or 3 more rows in waste yarn to make the stitches more accessible. The knit side shows single loops in view upon completion. Dropping small groups of stitches off as one makes progress across the row may make the technique easier, helping with placement of the other hand to hold the work. On the machine the fixed distances between needles and gate pegs help to keep the tension even. The back stitching may be done off the machine, but maintaining even tension there may be a bit harder.

and here from right to left

Some references advocate this method for binding off rib after transferring all stitches to the main bed. A row is knit across the transferred stitches prior to stitching through the now single thickness

The process, whether executed on the machine or off is, to my mind, easier with waste yarn knit after the transfers. Here is an illustration of single bed knitting removed from the machine. The top of the last row of the body of the knit may then be bound off using a crochet hook or latch tool chain using a continuous thread,or the needle and yarn sewing method may be used.  There is a limit as to the length of yarn used so as not to pose problems. Very wide pieces may prove to be a challenge, requiring more than a single yarn end to complete the bind off. My own yarn end max limit for sewing up or off is about 18 inches

Taking it double bed: EON needle is transferred to the top bed.  From right to  left: COR stitches that appear as knit ones  on the purl ground are brought out to hold,  the knit carriage is set to slip from left to right, purl stitches will slip.  Set carriage to knit both ways, continue with waste knitting, drop piece off the machine, continue as illustrated in circular fold over method

Here any waste yarn is folded over, exposing the tops of ribbed stitches. The threading and stitching sequence is numbered, illustrated for both one by one and two by two rib. Depending on the planned seaming  choice, an extra stitch may be added on either or both sides of the knit so that half a stitch or a whole one can be absorbed into the seam, resulting in a continuous rib configuration on the outside of the garment

Drat it aka “figlet” moments: knit leader mylar sheets +

Such moments may well have to be a new blog topic. In the hope of actually soon having enough time to return to knitting on a more regular basis, I have been reorganizing my supplies. This can be a good thing. I have “found” missing ribber comb wires, tools I had forgotten about, have drawer units that are helping with organization of all the “stuff”,  and that for a while will be contributing to my having to make regular searches for all sorts of things. Then there were all those mylar sheets for knit leaders with garment shapes on them for pieces I cannot even remember making with lovely multi colored lines all over them. One in particular had very fine lines, I guessed perhaps from ink other than that in my go to water soluble pens, so I thought to give removal a shot with some alcohol. Hence a warning: the lines did not disappear on the “outside”, so I flipped the darn sheet over to give erasing a shot on its reverse side and discovered quickly by the lovely blue on the cloth that the measurement grid was quickly and completely removed in any area touched by the alcohol. Another lesson learned. Perhaps an earlier one of great benefit might have been not to wait decades to erase knit leader mylar sheets, no matter what the marking tool as I now explore ” would I ever make this shape once again, ever?” and “what will take these lines off?” on other sheets.

Previously captured and “found” while exploring text issues in earlier posts, is now fondly remembered and shared

at 60 inch length of a lace shawl

More on Brother DBJ, including KR 260 bulky KM options

WORK IN PROGRESS

Any repeat suitable for a 2 color 24 stitch DBJ separation published or self drawn for a 4.5mm machine is suitable for DBJ on the bulky. At times yarns ie 2/8 to 3/8 wools that knit stocking stitch at tension 8-10 on the main bed and are too thick for every needle rib on the standard may produce a fabric that is not too dense, and still has some drape at lower settings for tension on both beds on the bulky. Electronic standard knitters can double the size of the repeat prior to separating the 2 colors, and then work on every other needle both beds, proceeding as usual for DBJ. Thicker yarns begin to make too thick a fabric for wearables, may work well for other uses. If some drape is required, the ladder back method becomes the preferred one in bulky KM DBJ. I no longer have available the bulky dbj samples from my teaching days, my 260 KM is not set up, so for now this post will not include swatch photos. As always swatching is a necessity to determine whether the resulting knit is one that meets our expectation, preferences, and often, patience.

To review: the 260 KH carriage will be familiar to Brother punchcard 4.5 mm machine users, and has the option for creating thread lace (“split” cam button in center position), which is not commonly available in Brother models.

The Brother 270 electronic knit carriage offerssimilarsettings

There is no automatic method for eliminating end needle selection ie KCII, rather, adjustments for it are made on the underside of the carriage, as in other punchcard machinesIn terms of DBJ, the electronics allow for the familiar KRC 2 color separationKR 260 parts as described in the ribber manual, followed by possible settings for cam levers are illustrated below. The absence of lili buttons is immediately noticeable. There is no automatic every other needle selection on the bulky ribber carriage shown, as opposed to that choice being available on the standard KM.

slip to rightslip to leftslip both directionstuck to righttuck to lefttuck both directions

hand selection tools for either bed, 4.5mm on top,  sometimes interchangeableevery needle selector for standard, operates similar to Jac 40, EON here for use bulky, adjustablea 17.5 inch workshop cut model in a plastic for 2X2 selection on bulky nowadays 3D printed custom options are also beginning to be available

The DBJ setting that requires the least intervention on either standard or bulky machines is the one produced with the separated motif being knit with the ribber set to slip all needles in one direction, and to knit every needle in the other. Reproducing the lili effect is done on the KR 260 is achieved with hand needle selection. For birds eye, where every needle is in use on an even number of needles in work on the ribber, select every other needle on the ribber beginning  with the second needle on the right for preselection row, push up to holding position. The ribber carriage is set to slip both ways, will knit hand selected needles as it makes its way to opposite side. Now select every other needle on the ribber beginning with first needle on right, bringing those needles up to hold. Stitches on those needles will knit on the ribber as the carriage makes its way back to the left and to the color changer. Colors continue to be changed every 2 rows as in any standard 2 color birds eye fabric. 

Ladderback or modified Jacquard is at times used on standard machines specifically for the effect created on the fabric reverse side, and most often used with bulkier yarns in order to be able to make a garment with more drape than it may have in regular jacquard, or to knit large designs with no long floats. This technique on the KR 260 ribber involves hand manipulation of the ribber stitches to reduce the number of stitches created on the ribber as well. Ribbing is often set up in order to produce a band that is not hugely different in stretch and width than the body of a garment, with further transfers for the ladder back configuration when it is completed. No more than one needle is usually in work on the main bed beyond needles in work on the ribber bed. If an additional needle on the main bed is required, it should be on the left hand side. The rib is knit as tightly as possible, tension is loosened as one progresses into the jacquard portion of the piece. Common arrangements are 1X1, 1X3, 2X2, etc.  When needles are arranged in “even groups” ie 2X2, 2X4, 4X2, etc, the lili setting or manual needle selection to emulate it on the 260 may be used. Tuck settings may be experimented with as well, but tend to create a more noticeable vertical line between ribbed repeats on the knit face. The larger the number of needles in work on the main bed between ribber needles in work, the more the main bed tension needs to approach that used for the yarn when it is knit single bed. 

In EON ladder back an increase on the ribber is usually necessary after 4 increases on the main bed. On the bulky this may be needed as often as in every 2 rows. The hand needle selection must remain constant throughout the piece to maintain the birds eye backing or any of its variants, which are based on pairs of needles alternating functions every 2 rows. Striper backing is achieved by selection of the same needle for each of the 2 colors used, slipping the opposite color needle locations. First needle selection on right is easier to track by marking the location of the first needle used on that side on the needle tape or needle bed as a guide for subsequent rows. 

The row counter will show double the number of rows than if the fabric were produced in Fair isle. Four passes of the carriages complete one design row. The motif will appear elongated to a degree depending on yarn and techniques used. Ladder back and vertical stripe backings may produce vertical separation lines in the fabric that may be quite noticeable depending on color, tension, and yarn used. Watch closely for dropped stitches or split ones. Splices and knots in yarn may tend to brake due to use of added weights and tension. Plan on adding new yarn at sides and use ends to seam up, or use Russian join before point where a new yarn end is required, and continue knitting. The latter has become my favorite even in lace knitting on the standard machine. A recent tutorial on the technique may be found here <https://www.mybluprint.com/article/this-method-of-joining-yarn-ends-is-pure-magic>

Check alignment and oiling requirement of machine frequently. 

Other backings: one color backing. Main bed is set as normal for DBJ, but the ribber is set to knit for 2 rows of one color, and to slip for 2 rows with the other color. This means on any machine (unless using 2 electronic carriages as described in other post) the operator has to change ribber settings every 2 rows. It will now take 4 carriage passes to complete 2 rows of knitting. Floats will be formed in the non backing color, may be caught on the ribber on slip rows, so check frequently, begin with small repeats, always test new yarns or even a different color or dye lot in same yarn on swatches prior to committing to larger pieces. 

Patterned backing: selection of ribber needles in blocks of alternate colors, or selecting ribber needles in between those selected on the main bed applies here as well. Yarn thickness and end product serve as guides as to whether the fabric serves one’s purpose or preference.

In large areas of solid color on garment face if bleed through is noticeable, a pattern of 2 black rows alternating 2 white ones may need to be programmed, with color changes continuing as in pattern areas. If the goal is simply to match density or drape, then continue in settings used for design area without color changing. Most punchcard double jacquard separations and “rules” apply to both standard and bulky machines.

A separate post will address ribber bind offs at first, and perhaps cast ons at a later date. I was never quite content with ribbed edgings on my bulky knits. There are always several options for achieving a look that pleases us more, or a technique that will alter the unwanted results. In this instance, one is to knit a row on the main bed after several rows of waste yarn, continue with the body of the garment piece, rehang that first knit row, knit the rib upside down, and bind off. The latter can happen on the machine, by hand off on waste yarn with a “sewing” needle, or removing the work onto hand knitting needles and going that route. The 260 ribber manual recommends the following method. 

Having the waste yarn U style with opening on right with bind off beginning on that side, or finding a way to mark the first needle on the ribber in the sequence may make finding that needle position easier when the knit is off the machine.

This illustration, also from a Brother manual, slightly edited, shows the sequence for how the yarn is threaded through the stitches in numbered sequence according to stitch configuration for the ribbed fabric

Ribber fabrics with main bed tuck patterning

WORK IN PROGRESS


Tuck stitches on either bed will force apart the space between vertical rows of stitches in every needle rib, whether the tucking is executed on either or both beds, in one or 2 color knitting. The fabric lies flat, and depending on fiber and thickness of yarn used, the effect can be lacey and have lovely drape. In published repeats, often tucking does not happen for more than 2 rows, making knitting fairly “safe”. In thinner yarns elongation may be used to force the fabric even further apart for a more “open” look. Patterning in suggestions below occurs automatically, and on the main bed only. Needles out of work on the ribber may be planned within repeats to produce a fabric with knit textures on what appear as both knit and purl surfaces. There are designs in pattern books that are promoted as being specific for this purpose, but nearly any tuck pattern may be used once limitations are recognized.

The advice from the Brother Ribber Techniques Book and the KR850 ribber manual respectively is shown below. If a knitting with a very fine yarn, the close knit bar is recommendedAn often forgotten accessory: (I admit I have never used them)

Fine knit bar for using thin yarns

Typical patterns for the fabric from punchcard volumes

In electronic patterning a single isolated repeat will suffice. Punchcards illustrated above show the minimum required length for each. In matching needles out of work on electronics, it matters whether the default setting produces what is seen on the card on the purl or the knit side. Flipping the repeat horizontally may be required.  “Air knitting” with needle selection can help plan exact location on needle bed, as well as repeat width and in choosing of location and type of side edges. Again, having ribbed vertical stripes on each side will help the latter lie flat.

 

Brother/Passap: traveling between brands

WORK IN PROGRESS

This is the start of a new spreadsheet with between brands vocabulary. I will edit and replace information throughout the post as time allows 

A previous post on yarns info included these guidelines provided for knitting using Jaggerspun yarns. I have no affiliation with the company. I do still continue to use some of their “lines”, and have a great appreciation for all their yarns. I obtained permission from the company to share content. The bottom 2 yarns, superfine merino and zephyr wool silk are both 2/18.

Joella Knitworks was a publication in the 90s on Passap knitting. A ravelry question back in 2014 led me to dig up a copy of an article I wrote for the newsletter in 1998 on using tech 129 for adapting Japanese patterns for use on Passap, shared as a pdf, offered here as images

Brother dbj ribber settings

Two of my former  handouts on Passap lock settings and techniques

Punch cards to electronics: book symbols and samples

A number of variables need to be considered when adapting punchcard patterns for use on electronic knitting machines. These images pertain to Brother use, but the principles are shared between KM brands. I will add more information as time goes on. Online free downloads for magazines, manuals, etc. may be found at
http://knittsings.com/knitting-machine-manuals/
http://toyotaknitting.blogspot.com/
http://www.aboutknittingmachines.com/
http://s216.photobucket.com/user/Britlady52/library/?sort=3&page=1
machineknittingetc.com
https://www.knititnow.com/ManualAndDocuments/
some additions of late include designs in 12, 18, and 30 stitch repeats in addition to the familiar 24 and 40 ones, and to help with interpretations of symbols:  Japanese symbols for machine knitters 

For a later post including information on scanning and editing published designs electronically see http://alessandrina.com/2018/07/02/numbers-to-gimp-to-create-images-for-electronic-download/
As the transition was made from manual machines to push button, and then to punchcard selection systems, the early collections included diagrams of symbols familiar to hand knitters, and interestingly worded text that disappeared or was reduced in later punchcard books. I am presenting information in the order in which it appeared in this particular collection’s paper version, I have not found this volume in the above-mentioned sources for free download. Images are gathered from more than the one source, so there is some repetition of information


LACE KNITTING

Punchcards may be used to guide one for hand techniques, here a version of e wrap is used on selected needles for weaving effect, the diagram on upper left is for a different fabric. Punchcard may also be used to help track twisted stitches , cables , and racking This is a 2 carriages patterning operation, so lace extension rails must be used, with each carriage disengaged from the belt while the other is moving across the knitting and back to its resting place. 

SYMBOLS IN PATTERN KNITTING

Below each punchcard, the repeat the is identified in numbers for stitches and rows. The cards presented are the minimum length required for the card to roll smoothly within the reader when joined for continuous knitting (at least 36 rows). Electronic knitters may isolate the individual, smallest repeat, draw only the squares that appear as white in the cards, enter them via mylar or download, and use color reverse.

Skip is aka slip or part. These cards would work for tuck stitch as well, may even tolerate elongation, depending on yarn thickness.

Opposite cam buttons are in use, the fabric changes appearance depending on which of the 2 stitch types is forward, so if instructions with cards are to be followed, then the starting side for pthe attern in this instance should be COR. Both tuck buttons (or slip) may be used as well, for a different fabric. If the tuck or slip texture is created over an even number of rows (2, 4), changing colors for each paired row sequences can create some interesting color patterns with very short floats akin to planned mosaics and mazes. 

The fair isle patters below are actually poor choices in terms of float control, pushing its limits. It is usually recommended that floats be no wider than 5 stitches, and even then, they may have to be controlled to make the finished garment easier to wear. 

Brother only produces a transfer lace (as opposed to studio simple lace, where the carriage transfers and knits with each pass of the carriage). The lace carriage is the one advancing the punchcard. The knit carriage does not select needles, but rather, knits 2 (or more) plain knit rows

Lace card markings, including for fine lace. In the latter, stitches are transferred and shared between pairs of needles, best knit in a light color, with smooth yarn so surface texture becomes more noticeable.

Lace point cams may be used on the punchcard machine to create vertical bands of lace. This is also achievable on the electronic by programming for knit stitches between vertical (or horizontal bands).

Tuck (left) and weaving (right) may be combined with lace. In these fabrics both carriages are selecting needles, so extension rails must be used. The two column on the left of the cards indicate movements for the lace carriage on left, and the knit carriage on right. Straight arrows indicate single carriage passes, curved ones 2.

Yet another fabric using 2 carriages selecting needles for patterning

Here the “openness” is created by having the appropriate needles out of work, creating ladders in those spaces. Some interesting results can be obtained by transferring the recommended out of work needles’ stitches to the ribber. “air knitting” can help with verifying proper needle placement is in use

to match location of out of work needles to markings for punchcards, which are often given with lines delineating 0 needle position, the image will need to be mirrored horizontally

THREAD OR PUNCH LACE is possible only on machine models that have 2 buttons in mc position The thicker yarn knits along with the thinner one where there are unpunched areas or white squares, the thinner yarn knits alone where the punched holes or black squares occur, with the thicker yarn floating behind it more information on this fabric 

Suitable for tuck and possibly tolerant of elongation as well:

Punchcard machines mirror motifs when knit. This may not be noticed when copying small repeats, but it becomes more evident in larger ones. For knitting on the 910, the supplied motif would need to be mirrored when programmed to retain the intended direction.

Here are 2 FI samples: the one on the left is fairly evenly distributed, so little if any difference is noticed, the one on the right sends the biker to a different forest

reversal of lettering


and when you think that that is all sorted out in your head, there are these in slip stitch, the direction of stitches matches, because the purl side is used, images reverse on the knit side 

the mirrored punchcards the punchcard change knob has selections for single motif and pattern knitting (KC)

the 910 has settings KC I and II, KC II cancels end needle selection, while in punchcard machines this has to be done manually if the pattern stitch requires it. One such example  is when any patterns are made with needles out of work. End needle selection would make the needles on each side of the empty space select forward and create a knit stitch. In tuck or slip, that would be an out of pattern knit stitch, in FI, a vertical line of the color in the B feeder would appear along on each side of the OOW needles.

Ribber settings and symbols for Brother machines 

Lots of swatches

I have unearthed some of the hundreds of swatches that managed to  move with me when I downsized. They were produced when I used when teaching, often during class experiments and demonstrations. The yarn colors were chosen so I could spot them a mile away as my own (there were shared/public use yarn shelves in studio), and “different” enough so as not to tempt their being taken at any workshops ;-). I am adding them to my photostream as and when I can, and in turn shifting them into albums. In case anyone is interested the link is https://www.flickr.com/photos/drina2/ I am not certain I will have any opportunity to teach again, am hoping if people see them they may be inspired to try some of the techniques in materials and colors of their choosing. I would gladly explain more on any of them if any questions come up when viewing them.

Life changes; Flickr album links

There seem to be times when “life interferes with art” (or at least with one’s wished for schedule) is acutely true. I am in the throes of downsizing, moving and selling my home of 43 years, so there is not a whole lot of knitting or blogging going on.

I will be demonstrating at a Machine Knitting Guild on the West Coast next Saturday, and this had led me to re organizing my Flickr photo stream. For anyone interested, images of my samples albums links:  holding and ruching