ArahPaint meets Gimp in knit design


Questions regularly turn up asking what software we use as individuals to design repeats for our knitting. I work exclusively on a Mac unless downloading to my Passap with Wincrea, an ancient laptop, and as old a version of windows.
I have been using Gimp for eons, it is my go-to along with Numbers to create the charts in my blog and graph my designs to ready them for download.
ArahPaint is a free paint program, part of a far larger weaving one. I have used it intermittently for features not achievable in Gimp at all, especially prior to its latest Mac updates. Working notes may be found in my many past blog posts on using Gimp including the latest 2021/07/18/gimp-update-for-mac-2/.
The scope of AhrahPaint is smaller, but its functions are well worth exploring from simple designs with any application including hand knitting, to scaling, drawing in repeat, configuring those repeats in many arrangements easily, color reductions, and much more for end-use in machine knitting.
There is a very good downloadable manual, but not generous in providing small details applicable when working in a low res bitmap such as that found in knit design.
My goal here is to provide some starting ideas on using the program for new users and a few comparisons to Gimp features for those who have worked with that program in the past.
Links for anyone wishing to try Arahpaint on a Mac (or Windows), including video tutorials
Sept 20, 2021: a new version of the software is now available for download, it is larger in file size
A “fast pattern” supplement, black and white images are used on pages 20-24,
The user manual appears unchanged
The drawing in repeat window now offers new Preview, and Browse options. If Paint is part of the complete weaving program, there is a library of patterns for the user to browse through. If it is used as a stand-alone, the choice provides the opportunity for the user to browse through their personal library of images before continuing.  The information available to me as I began this post
the download button is at the top left of the webpage…/softwar…/arahpaint-for-mac-os-x/…/user…/detailed-users-manuals/  with more info and videos on version 6 for anyone inspired by weaving drafts as a source of knitting pattern repeat
Arah menu options provide a quick view of menu differences between it and Gimp Tools as listed in the shortcuts pdf, the order is slightly different than in the program view When exploring design potential in any paint program, it is best, to begin with, to use a small repeat that can be clearly identified when tiled in various configurations, resized, and pixel edited. If drawing is with the goal to produce a BW bitmapped image for download, drawings can happen in those colors to start with. If color separations are planned in the development of the design, then 2 color images including black may be preferable.
The Arah default dot size for pixel drawing is 1X1. The 8-bit palette mode both for colors and greyscale uses up to 256 shades, greyscale values may also be measured in percentages of black ink coverage. Images may be converted from one color mode to another as in Gimp.
Begin with a small image size To work on the image, magnification will be required. This may be achieved in two ways on the Mac, one is to click repeatedly on the magnifying lens icon in the toolbox, the other is to press any number from 0 to 9 on the keyboard, the zoom will instantly change for 1 at 100%, to 6 for 600%, to 0 for 1000. The latter is minimal for building repeats on a viewable grid. The zoom level for both increases and decreases may be changed during drawing operations as well.
The image may be also be magnified to fill the window, and the program may be used in full-screen mode on your device by making the very last selection in the View menu. At zoom levels higher than 300%, the program shows a grid between pixels, if the grid view is enabled.
To show or hide the grid, choose View, Show Grid
To change the grid properties, choose View, Grid properties
The grid color can be black, gray, or white.
The second level grid determines every how many thin lines a thicker one will be drawn
Setting the grid: the default grid is subdivided, grid color and spacing may be custom set through selections in the View menu Altering the thicker line placement to suit personal preferences or to match electronic or punchcard published repeats more easily, simply type in new values and close The default cell shape appears to be square, without the option to create rectangular cells. Changing the grid option to lose subdivisions: deselect show grid 2. Draw a basic shape whose changes may be easily recognized. Color palette tools are in the palette areas. The starting palette may be altered to include black. Double click on the foreground color at the top, the #1 block over the #0, not in the space below the palette icon. A color selection window will appear, choose, click OK. This change is lost if one quits the program. If satisfied with the drawn repeat, use the selection tool to isolate the final motif.  The new working image after cropping to selection:

Drawing in repeat instructions reproduced from the manual Starting with the single triangle: block alignment Standard brick alignment using offset in pixelsPillar repeat also using offset in pixels Other offset options through the use of fractionsPlaying with mirroring positions, producing a minimum 2 by 2 repeat,  the result looks akin to the pillar repeat drawing above, but tiling again to check for alignment may yield surprises that can be viewed as design features or errors,  Changes to mirroring arrows may be made when drawing in repeat on the top left of the window as well  Once an image is drawn in the repeat of your choice, if only the Random option is used, with new picture left unchecked, the pencil may be used to draw on pixel cells, and changes will be made across all repeat segments. Each step may be undone individually. Many of these functions are paralleled in Gimp symmetry drawing.
The possibilities are endless. As always, good note-taking helps in being able to reproduce your chosen process with new images.
If you begin drawing a repeat using a single color on a white ground, then decide you would rather work in only black and white, simply double click on the foreground color, the palette window will appear, choose the new color, and all pixels in your repeat will then change to the selected one Repeats may be built in a more controlled manner using the image duplicate menu, its symbols immediately reminded me of the Passap Alter Direction options: choose a simple repeat to start with. Here a diagonal line was drawn along the center of a square, the bottom half bucket filled a half drop was added and the repeat was tiled to test alignment

Many find inspiration for knit designs in weaving drafts. The Arah Youtube video on developing drawing such repeats shows an option for preview in the draw in repeat window not available in my present version of only the ArahPaint. The resulting working repeats are likely to be large. Reset allows for changing repeat mirroring arrangements. Using find the repeat may help develop a sequential series of repeat segments in different sizes, producing different tiling effects, and the option of hand selection of even smaller areas followed by cropping and processing is always possible.
A sample effort producing a tenfold repeat of the original: Finding the repeat first on the complete resulting new image on left and testing its tiling, followed by finding the repeat again, cropping to the selection and tiling that as well on the right If the goal is to knit a scarf, 72 stitches wide, crop either repeat to a chosen 72 stitches in width, tile in length in either program to visually check alignment. If knitting in DBJ for approximately 1200 rows is the goal, one may obtain a visualization of the results ie for 1296 consecutive rows. A black pixel border could be added to the 72 stitches by copying and pasting the image on a larger canvas that will accommodate that border, or the border may be added by filling in pixels vertically to the edges of the original. Some repeats to play with: the 120 X 96 png  Its shorter, top half  The bottom half, 120 X 48, isolated in Gimp, tiled in length X4 to get a sense of some of the possible differences I cI can see the process becoming addictive once a single personally pleasing starting repeat is developed, and its, in turn, becoming a possible source for collections of designs

When scaling small repeats in Gimp in height only I found the results to have errors, seen in these images, while ArahPaint will multiply the motif cleanly only in height when needed, seen here with the original multiplied both X 2 and X4The Arah scaling appears to be quicker and far more accurate also when used on some published images that would require a lot of clean-up after resizing in Gimp.

Drawing lines: use the straight-line icon button to activate the tool, select the line thickness by selecting a number of pixels to be used then move the mouse pointer to a line starting point on the canvas and press the left side of the mouse, dragging it until the line is of the desired length and angle. When the line is at that desired length release the mouse.
A=1 pixel, B=2, C=4 with line dragged and released randomly, D= the line was moved and the mouse was not released until the steps were all the same size. The thick lines option works only at line width 1, which will keep the single pixels connected If you double click on the line icon, the Straight-line icon is activated. Now you can draw horizontal, vertical, or diagonal lines. If you move a mouse horizontally—it doesn’t need to be perfectly straight, the drawn line is horizontal. If the angle between a line and the horizontal axis exceeds the angle of 23 degrees, the drawn line will be diagonal at 45 degrees. If you move the mouse toward the vertical axis, the line will be drawn as a vertical line. The straight-line tool may be used to draw clean diagonals. If the paint tool is then used to fill spaces between some of the drawn lines, the line tool reverts back to the original and will have to be reactivated if you wish to continue using it.

Working with both programs: developing a pretend repeat to later be used for chevron 24 stitch tuck stitch :
A: using straight lines, draw after determining the spacing to be left blank between them, here they are not all intended to match. Bucket fill the stripes intended to be knit stitches, reactivating the straight line tool after each fill
B: when satisfied with stripes and shaping, crop the original to 12 stitches in width
C: using drawing in repeat, mirror to create a 24 stitch shape. Save images along the way in case any “wrong” selections are made, draw in repeat (not shown) at least X 2 in both width and height, looking for errors in alignments D: correction is needed a the top of the repeat E: after your best shot, draw in repeat once more, leaving the setting at random, edit any wrong pixels using a white pencil, the edits will happen across the repeat
F: the new repeat
G: drawing F in repeat makes it appear correct
H: making the repeat as small as possible for use on electronic machines; the find repeat tool does not work on every repeat, particularly very small ones, and it works seamlessly at other times or will require only small adjustments. It is worth testing on images and keeping its use in mind. Here it makes a selection, the image is cropped to the selection, saved, and drawn in a larger series of repeats to check the alignment. Planning a repeat suitable for a punchcard, the uncropped repeat F is opened in Gimp, and pattern fill is used in white areas to ready the file for tuck knitting. The image is then map tiled to check alignment once more, and if satisfactory, it can be saved, ready to be knit The process can be so quick that it can be easily repeated to make new adjustments to meet our needs.
Making things work to get a “cleaner repeat”: the pattern fill is 2 rows wide by 2 rows high, so having both black and white areas of the design a multiple of 4 is a place to start. In the above, the shape outlines are in single row steps, so it is inevitable that the 4-row fill is episodically cropped by single pixels. Doubling the height of the initial single step repeat in Arah begins to solve the problem. In keeping the 24 stitch width restraint, the result, a now 56-row repeat,  will now have variations in the width of the black pixel areas which will produce knit stitches on a tuck ground  With experience, one can quickly imagine ways to clear errors and alter images. Electronic machines free us from repeat width constraints. Widening the zag repeat to 48 stitches, working in Arah, check vertical alignments first, edit intersections whether in a tiled image or the original, ultimately the 48-stitch by 80-row repeat is opened in Gimp, filled with the tuck pattern, and saved for knitting Color separations: the critical difference in the use of the Arah rectangle tool from that in Gimp is that it cannot be used for sequential selections of pairs of rows in color separations such as those for DBJ or mosaics. In those instances, the Arah image, scaled to the appropriate height may be saved, then opened, and processed in Gimp. For DBJ with each color in each design row knitting twice, design the shape and scale in length in Arah, save and open in Gimp for the separation, see post on working with Gimp update for Mac  Mosaics: draw the desired repeat in Arah, double it in height, save the image, open in Gimp and proceed with mosaic color separation 


Geometric shapes on ribber fabrics with tuck stitches 3

Previous related posts:
2 color ribbed brioche stitch on Brother knitting machine 1
Geometric shapes on ribber fabrics with tuck stitches 1
Geometric shapes on ribber fabrics with tuck stitches 2; knitting with 4 carriages
The last post on using Gimp:  2021/07/18/gimp-update-for-mac-2/
The method for color separation used for mosaics

The sources of inspiration from hand knitting or industrial knitting machine designs are endless. There are many features that simply cannot be duplicated, sometimes compromises can be reached that can achieve only imitations of the original. To my mind when knitting garments or long pieces the greater the degree of automation, the less likely one is to have patterning errors occur, in ribber fabrics, they are also more complicated to correct than single bed knitting.
I recently came across a pin of a Ravelry hand knit pattern which led to my return to this topic once more, including perhaps the addition of more colors. The plan is to create a repeat which may be knit using color changes every 2 rows. Each design row knits each color twice, so the standard built-in KRC separation is not a consideration, though the same cam settings may be used in those fabrics as well.
The required color separation has been discussed in several posts on the various forms of DBJ, a review:
The initial test repeat is 18 stitches by 44 rows, designed using 2 X 2 blocks, to begin with. How it might appear knit in fair isle:  Transitions in charting visualizations:
A: FI repeat with pattern progression in two-row increments
B: every even-numbered row beginning with row 2 is color reversed
C: B repeat is doubled in length to 18X88 for initial samples
D: repeat adjustment for a first try at introducing 2 additional colors End needle selection is canceled, the first and last needles are in work on each side on the ribber knitting every row, the first preselection row is from right to left, cam buttons are set after the left side is reached. Knitting in these samples began with the blue yarn in the number 2 position in the color changer. The ribber remains set for knitting in both directions throughout, the images on the right do not reflect the amount of surface 3D textures.
with the main bed set to tuck in both directionsLock settings are easier to achieve on the Passap than switching out cam buttons in Brother machines. This was knit using 4 carriages. Color one knits with the main bed set to tuck both ways, color two knits with the main bed set to slip both ways. The slip stitch reduces the width of the fabric considerably Here each color alternately tucks and slips. The choice of cam buttons matters, tucking first from left to right, slipping from right to left, with cam buttons set COL after the first preselection row This last cam setting appears to my eye to produce a texture “close enough” to the inspiration fabric. Attempting to add more colors: the repeat, D, is still 18 X 88 but is now shifted slightly.  Somehow the slip cam button was not set, so the knit carriage tucked in one direction while knitting in the other. I am vaguely reminded of illusion knits. Considering altering both the color choices and placements again. A way to imagine exact color change placements beginning with solid colors repeats once more, which can be followed by new color separations. The existing repeat may be reduced further to 18 X 64, eliminating some of those extra rows in the center of the chevron shape  The new BW image, tiled: Whether or not the design is intended to retain chevron shapes in alternating textures, actions may be plotted pre knitting in any way that visually makes sense to the person designing the pattern and tools available to them. Reversing the png so that the more textured stitches will begin with the color in yarn position 1Using either repeat, color changes now occur after every 32 rows knit. Another color change location clue is in the needle selection change above and immediately following the red border in the chart on the left.  Adding colors can be planned cautiously or allowed to happen randomly depending on the preferences of the designer and end-use. Ribber fabric designs are not visible until several inches have been knit, too late to catch color sequence errors. Some machines allow for memo placements or sounds to help track color changes, but only within the initially programmed repeats. A quick spreadsheet can provide customizable checkboxes or added information. For an attempt to retain chevron shapes in different textures: When using 3 colors, rather than 4, the texture of the zigzags on any specific color, will vary in placement. It is easy to change colors in any chart to approximate those that will actually be used in the knitting.  Proof of concept: each of my yarns is slightly different in both thickness or fiber content from the others, which can be a drawback in resulting textures. As in any 2 color dbj, if 4 consequent rows are knit in one of two colors the positive and negative portions of the image reverse, as seen at the top of the swatch. The green was not intended to be used originally, the white yarn simply ran out. Such accidents at times may provide pleasant improvements. There is bleed-through of each color behind the other in the tighter knit areas as well which contributes to visual color blending, noticeable even in the areas with fewer tucked stitches. Splitting zig-zags into triangles, working color 1 with color 2, followed by color 3 with color 4 pairings A PDF including row numbers and space for notations zig zag
An editable Excel spreadsheet created as an export from numbers zig zag
For Mac owners a Numbers doc. zig zag
A simpler repeat suitable punchcard owners as well using only 2 colors The test swatch and observations: patterning was begun with color 2, yellow.
The yellow yarn is 12/16, the maroon is 2/15 in thickness.
The triangle, because slip and tuck stitch settings are used, is compressed in height, while there is enough tuck happening to still make the knit wider.
The pattern is 24 stitches wide, the swatch was knit on 40 needles. Smaller swatches are fine for testing tension and colors. If committing to larger pieces, tests on at least 100 stitches by 100 rows are needed for gauge calculations in any double bed work or very textured patterns on the single bed.  On some occasions when a far larger number of needles are in use, problems may turn up that require going back to the drawing board in terms of items ie tension settings, weight used, etc.
A: patterning was begun with thicker yarn, the yellow, in color changer position 2, both yarns are 100% wool
B: KCI, end needle selection on, a 2 color “beaded” edge is created
C: KCII, end needle selection canceled, patterning occurs on end needles
D: transferring to the top bed and using the standard latch tool bind off for these fabrics is far too tight  The tiled repeat, 24X48, does keep the stitch quality constant for both colors, Assumptions based on optics of tiling are not always accurate clues to potential patterning errors, here those darker lines are part of the actual design Continuing on a 24 stitch repeat, the original design may be rendered at double height and separated once more, doubling the separation height to 96 rows There are days when either or both machine and knitter need a break. At the start of the first swatch, the cam buttons were not set, resulting in plain knit stripes. At its top, the purple did not get picked up properly from the color changer, and the knitting of course fell off the machine. On a second try, the same issue happened again with the purple yarn. Multiple incidences of such events were fondly nicknamed “dropitis” by my students. The test is on 24 stitches, the width of a single repeat, the triangles are much more balanced in size, this knitter is putting this pattern to rest.  Another try at the diamond shapes that began this topic. The first .png when tiled appeared to not have enough space between the shapes, was amended to this the differences when tiled the color separation can happen completely within Gimp using color invert the white yarn is an acrylic, slightly thicker than the purple toned one. Sometimes simply exchanging yarn positions can change the qualities of the overall fabric. The repeat begins with 2 blank rows. To achieve the tighter white shape as opposed to the honeycomb purple one, at the start of the repeat that color needs to be in use on rows where knit stitches happen as the KC, set on slip to the right, knits needles brought forward to D position. Red in this chart segment marks pertinent rowsBoth with hand knits and commercial knits because of the hand actions possible on both sides in the first, and as many as 4 beds selecting and knitting on the other may be in use at the same time with more complex needles as well, there are fabrics that are difficult or even impossible to duplicate. There often are obvious differences in the results, but the journey may still yield results that are pleasing and worth pursuing. Another even more complex inspiration from a sweater attributed to Falke, Spring 20 collection, using similar stitch structures, but in addition, also transferring stitches between beds exposing a purl striped ground.

Tuck lace trims and fabrics 3

The term lace is often used in publications to refer to fabrics created with techniques other than the familiar hand or machine stitch transfers. In turn, the ribber may be added to working most of the fabrics with varying degrees of complexity. Some variations are possible only on specific machine brands, at times possible in others with adaptation and addition of other techniques. Many combination fabrics may be achieved, mixing carriage settings or adding hand techniques. A list of common terms applied to “lace” that include tuck patterning:
Hand transfers: used to create eyelets, possibly in combination with pattern stitches out of work, and moving stitches singly or in groups
Tuck and lace: transfers combined with tuck stitch patterning
“Lace like patterns”: possible in machines such as Brother and Passap, which allow for the same stitches tucking in one direction, slipping on the return of the knit carriage to its starting side. It matters which function leads in the pattern
Tuck lace: tuck setting in both directions with specific needles out of work
Ladder Lace: worked with columns created by needles left out of work, tuck being an option in the knit portions
Punch tuck rib: every needle rib combined with tucking pattern on the knit bed Drive/ drop stitch lace: stitches start on either of the 2 beds, loops are picked up and dropped on the opposite bed
A list of the headings for most of the tuck stitch variants covered in my posts is now added to the start of my blog index

Once a stitch has been tested,  unusual yarns, including wire may be used Getting back to basics: a punchcard sometimes supplied in factory packs provided with machine purchases, is shown here in 1/3 of the minimum 36-row card repeat, while the minimum electronic repeat is outlined in red, measures 4 stitches by 4 rows Adding needles out of work by simply choosing to cast on and working on every other needle it does not matter whether even or odd needles are in use, the pattern will be identical but simply shifted over by one needle. For frequent color changes, make the first preselection row toward the color changer to start with, keep notes as to where the repeat color selections happen as experiments are expanded, evaluate color choice as a third or even fourth color are introduced Though casting on and binding off both need to be considered for extra width, having sections of the repeat knitting in plain knit will help sort the needle arrangement and loop structures when tucked knits appear similar-looking    The repeat on any tuck row can help test the number of rows a particular yarn will allow before the number of loops in the needle hooks become too many to knit off well. The added texture, or elimination of any, could be used in borders or occasional horizontal portions of the knit Some of the concepts in the visualization of more deliberate color placement through charting was discussed in the post: Single bed tuck and slip stitch fabrics 2: adding color
A starting repeat from a Pinterest image inspiration: the blue yarn will knit on every needle the third tuck row on the machine the fourth tuck row with needle preselection for the first all knit blue row one blue row knit Accommodating those blocks of knit stitches in the pin also changes the repeat to six stitches by 6 rows, making it usable on punchcard machines as well Two from one: the same tuck repeat was altered by changing the needle out of work arrangements. Slub yarn may be used but changes the value of the lines formed by the floats created in the needles out of work gaps. In my classes, I encouraged students to create long swatches testing out their patterns in a variety of stitch types with color changes as well. Thet can serve as a visual reference to duplicate effects when time has passed. Here the tuck pattern, not suitable for FI at all, is tested as DBJ, followed by needle transfers between beds and adding the tuck setting. There is a dramatic difference in width, the wool yarn has a lot of “spring”, wanting to narrow when at rest The self-designed stitch structures may be further changed visually and complicated in terms of execution by adding changes to the ribber setting so that it does not knit every rowPublications for electronic machines do not always include pertinent instructions, but they will include out of work needle diagrams below each appropriate repeat. The gray cells represent white squares, which correspond to non-selected needles but also in this case to out-of-work needle position areas where open spaces are created. The 4, 6, 8 stitch repeats are also usable in punchcard machines. These are from the Stitchworld pattern book, all with the exception of 282 are to be used with needles out of work

“Crochet” meets machine knitting techniques: working with short rows

Some previous posts exploring hand techniques that might be considered to fall in this family of stitches:
“Crochet” meets machine knitting techniques: tuck lace trims (and fabrics) 1
“Crochet” meets machine knitting techniques: tuck lace trims or fabrics 2
“Crochet” meets machine knitting techniques: working with “chains”
Search for “wisteria”
“Crochet” meets machine knitting techniques: working with short rows 1, June 2017 began to explore some of the fabrics presented in this category in a Portuguese language publication I do not speak or read the language, so my swatches are best guess efforts at producing similar knits. Attempting literal translation is not always helpful, for example, guidelines at the beginning of the pub:
A: in crochet stitches, the scheme is repeated across the entire width of the machine
B: in the “crochet ends”, braids and flowers, thread only the needles. Islands as indicated by the symbols in the scheme. Alternative: in crochet stitches of gallons and flowers thread the thread only on the needles as indicated in the diagram symbols
C: when starting to weave the car must always be on the right side unless the symbols in the scheme indicate otherwise, for example, crochet stitch #9
D: in crochet stitches count a career whenever the tip of the wire stay at the other end of the machine
E: the tension must be adjusted according to the stitch and thickness of the thread to be used, in general voltages 1-3 are used.”
Some familiarity with larger-scale patterns in this family can help visually with duplicating them independent of the written original language directions.
These fabrics share common hand technique movements across rows, singly, or in pairs. Similar structures are not presented in numerical order in the pub but will be here.
The yarn choice makes a critical difference both in managing the knitting and in how blocking, or not, affects the finished fabric. The knit carriage travels many times across each stitch as the technique is worked, with possibly pilling, so softly spun yarns should be avoided.
Clean the machine of any leftover fibers, while avoiding over-oiling which may leave dark streaks in the finished product.
Cast-ons and bind-offs need to be very loose to compensate for the fact that the completed knit will have considerable sideways stretch. Chain cast on 2 in work, 2 out of work, end with 2 needles in work
bring all stitches out to hold except for the first 2 stitches on the right
COR knit 8 rows
push adjacent pair of needles away from the carriage into work position, knit a row to left
COL bring previously knit pair of needles out to hold
knit 7 rows, end COR
bring adjacent pair of needles opposite carriage into work, knit a row to left, end COL
COL when the last pair of needles is returned to work knit 8 rows
reverse shaping: bring the second pair of needles on left into work, knit a row, push the first pair of needles out to hold, continue the process for the desired length
The yarn used is a 6X18 rayon, a “no memory” yarn that changes considerably with pressing. The arrows mark an operator error in tracking the sequence, top and bottom edges are obviously narrower than the resulting mesh.  Number 11 is a close relative but worked on every other needle The rayon used in the previous sample, and a 2/8 wool, were less successful than a 2/11 acrylic in knitting the swatch. The stitches need to be as tight as possible while also needing to be able to knit off properly
make a very loose chain cast-on on an even number of needles, then drop every other chain, taking every other needle completely out of work, and ending with a needle in work
bring all stitches out to hold except for the first stitch on the right
I believe the directions are given for knitting only 2 passes, I preferred the look with the count doubled to 4, so, COR knit 4 rows
push adjacent needle away from the carriage into work position, knit a row to left
COL bring previously knit pair of needles out to hold
knit 3 rows, end COR
bring adjacent pair of needles opposite carriage into work, knit a row to left, end COL, knit 3 rows
COL when the last pair of needles is returned to work knit 4 rows, continue with
reverse shaping: bring the second pair of needles on left into work, knit a row, push the first needles out to hold, continue the process for the desired length
In the top part of the swatch I knit 8 rows at starting and ending sequences, feeling the sides were tight, 6 may be the best answer
bing off very loosely after the last stitch is worked for 4 rows
The same directions apply in this instance, the first sample worked with no needles out of work I added 3 chains between cast-on and bound-off stitches, making for a better top and bottom edge. The difference in width is highlighted on the bottom right, where I missed doing so between two stitches. At the end of each row, prior to reversing direction, I knit 6 rows rather than 4, end with 4 rows only on the last needle prior to binding off. The swatch was not steamed or pressed.
This knit begins on every needle I cast on chaining over 2 needles, followed by two extra chains where the ladder is expected, cast-off also with two extra chains in ladder spaces. The knit sequence is similar to the previous swatch, but needles are now moved in pairs
COR work first 2 stitches for 2 rows
push two needles on left into work, knit one row to left
COL *push first 2 stitches to hold, knit one row to the right
COR bring next two stitches on the left into work, knit one row to left
COL push previous 2 stitches to hold, knit one row to the right**
bring 2 stitches on left into work knit one row to left,
repeat across the row
when the last pair of stitches are left, COL knit two rows on them, and reverse shaping. Ending each sequence with two knit rows will produce fairly straight sides, knitting four rows on end stitches, except prior to binding off,  may echo the movement of the in-between spaces and make the ladders at the sides more visible Eliminating those ladders or floats, here eyelets are created where stitches are held for two rows. Care needs to be taken if stitches are dropped or other patterning errors are made in order to retain the correct pattern. Cast on and bind in this instance were executed with single chains added in between those on needles in work.
Version 1:
COR with the first 2 needles in work, knit 2 rows
COR bring one needle on left into work, knit 1 row
COL bring one needle out to hold opposite carriage, knit one row
COR bring one needle on left into work, knit 1 row
COL bring one needle out to hold opposite carriage, knit one row
repeat until there are 2 needles left in work, knit 2 rows
reverse shaping
end with 2 rows knit on the last pair of stitches before binding off
Version 2 adds 2 rows knit on every needle between holding pattern reversals, the fabric grows in length far more quickly
Cast on from left to right on every needle
COR knit 2 rows, bring all needles except for the first 2 on the carriage side out to hold
COR with the first 2 needles in work, knit 2 rows
COR bring one needle on left into work, knit 1 row
COL bring one needle out to hold opposite carriage, knit one row
COR bring one needle on left into work, knit 1 row
COL bring one needle out to hold opposite carriage, knit one row
repeat until there are 2 needles left in work, knit 2 rows, end COL
COL push remaining needles into work, knit 2 rows on all needles
COL bring all needles except the first 2 on the left into work, knit 2 rows
reverse shaping, ending with 2 knit rows on the far right
COR push all needles into work, knit 2 rows on all needles
COR bring all needles out to hold except for the first 2 on the right
repeat all
end with 2 rows knit on the last pair of stitches before binding off

chain cast on 2 in work, 2 out of work, end with 2 needles in work
worked in 2 pairs, 4 needles at a time
COR knit 6 rows on the first two pairs of stitches on the right push pair of needles on the left into work knit one row push first 2 of needles out to hold knit 5 rows CORpush next pair on left into work, knit one row  push the third group  on  its right into hold position, knit 5 rows across remaining  4stitches bring a new group on left into work, knit one row
bring the pair to the far right out of work
repeat  process across row
when  the last pair of needles on the left is pushed back into work, knit one row
COL knit 10 rows, bring the third pair of needles into work, knit one rowPush the first pair of needles out to work, knit 5 rows, continue with reverse shaping.
If the pattern is to end on the right (or left), knit 6 rows on the last 4 stitches and stop, otherwise when the opposite side position is reached, knit 10 more rows before reversing and continuing in the pattern.
Tracking rows worked: 7 ladders are created in each space, 12 on each end. Depending on yarn and stitch size watch to see that even tension is maintained particularly on the first 2 stitches worked on each side.
The swatch is shown before and after some light pressing, the arrow marks some looser stitches on the side edge.

Latch tool cast on from left to right, chaining 4  in no needle, future ladder spaces
COR with the first 2 needles in work, knit 2 rows
COR bring the first needle on left into work, knit 1 row to the left on three stitches
COL bring the first needle of the previous pair on the right out to hold, knit one row to the right on two stitches
COR bring the closest needle on the left into work, knit 1 row on three stitches
COL bring the second needle of the previous pair on the right out to hold, knit one row on two stitches
repeat working on 3, then 2 stitch sequences until there are only 2 needles left in work, end COL
COL knit two rows, begin  reverse shaping by putting one needle into work on the right, knit one row on three needles
COR bring the first stitch on the far left out to work, knit one row on 2 needles
continue reverse shaping, ending with 2 needles in work on the far right
COR knit two rows on 2 stitches, repeat and continue the process until 2 stitches are left in work on the left, and reverse again
end fabric with 2 rows knit on last 2 stitches in work
latch tool bind off with chaining X 4 in ladder spaces
keep an eye on sequences, the floats are created in series of three, with experience knitting similar patterns, errors become easy to spot during is knitting Shell shapes: #4 and # 20 directions are given in the 2017 blog post Some of the trims in this pub may be far more easily and quickly executed using tuck stitches.

Numbers and GIMP: online punchcard patterns to electronics 2

There is a Russian online site offering a huge range of punchcard designs. The question on how to convert the site files for use in electronic machines surfaces periodically and did so again recently in FB groups.
My posts with information related to this topic:
Brother KMs: punchcards and their use 
Numbers and GIMP: online punchcard patterns to electronics
color exchange Gimp update for Mac 2

A Russian language tutorial on converting the punchcard images using DAK
A recent offering on navigating the site in English, begin viewing on minute 5
The site link
The translated site link 
The options in English for working with published cardsThe help menu is available after the card is chosen Designs are presented in pages that list them from longest to shortest row counts for the complete repeats. Punchcard users can reproduce holes as given. There is also an option for entering a new design and it appears, in turn, one may be able to generate a separation for its use in DBJ.
Beginning with a smaller design intended for machines with 12 stitch repeat restrictions simplifies the view and processing of it for newbies. The published patterns are offered Silver Reed ready. The option for converting the cards for use on Brother 260 renumbers it with the appropriate location for the number 1 row marks required by the operation of the different brand’s card reader. Toyota versions are also available. Making the holes larger is a boon to reproducing the drawing correctly regardless of end-use. Splitting the card into segments is helpful when using factory blanks with a 60-row maximum repeat, and often also when processing the image for use on electronic machines, which is affected by screen size views available to the software user. For some reason, I found the commands erratic when working on the translated version of the site, fared much better in the original language publication.
The chosen card image may be dragged onto one’s desktop. I use Numbers to create my tables. The 2 all-punched rows, marked with blue arrows, and any standard vertical rows of holes on each side of the provided designs need to be isolated and eliminated. This is a 12 stitch repeat required for use on some machine models or useful when using a thicker yarn on every other needle to achieve the same design, every other vertical row is blank. A: the table with cells 20X20 sized to match the number of rows and stitches in the original. The card image is arranged in the back of the table with the constrain properties option unchecked in its image-arrange menu. B: cells corresponding to marked holes are filled in with black since the final goal is to create an indexed BMP. Using and holding down the command key during cell selection helps perform the coloring cells in action on groups, clicking on any cell again while still holding the key down will deselect the fill. Release the key, choose the fill-in color, repeat, and continue until the holes in the full design are filled in. C: click and hold command key, select every other blank vertical column marked with letters at the top of the table, the blank vertical rows are selected, release the command key, right-click on any of the same letter selections again, and choose to delete selected columns from the pull-down menu or after marking the rows directly from the table menu at the top of the screen. Eliminate all cell borders. C: the result showing how the pattern will appear when used to program fair isle.  Screengrab the final image surrounded by extra white cells, open it in GIMP. Change the mode to indexed BW, crop the file to content thus excluding any extra white cells, scale to the original design’s 24 by 74 dimensions. Punched holes are now pixels; export the knit-ready BMP.
Using the filter, map, tile option allows one to check on horizontal and vertical repeat alignments for any errors, and begin to imagine how the repeat might appear on a finished piece. Color exchange used on the BW BMPs converted to RGB mode helps visualize the knit using specific colors. On the far left below the final BMP is shown magnified X 800 with a superimposed grid, then filter-map-tiled to 48X148 size. It is followed by a color reversed version of the same. The remaining images illustrate the result of using the color exchange option, beginning with the BW BMP repeat converted to RGB mode.  Getting a preview of how a finished garment might appear, here the tiled version is 192 pixels in width and one may glean some idea as to whether that repeat should ever really be used in a sweater or even a blanket. Further image scaling or cropping can happen based on the knit gauge. A very quick rendering imagining pattern and color placements using a simple sweater outline Collections of every other needle repeats for processing with a similar approach may be found in these volumes, available for free download
Chunky punchcard patterns  12 stitch Patterns of Knitting With Creative Punch Cards Juki 12 StitchBoth volumes include accompanying swatch illustrations.

In machine knitting, the word lace is used in categorizing a large variety of knit fabrics. The terms include:
simple lace, executed with carriages that transfer and knit in a single pass
multiple transfer/ fashion/ fancy/ lace: executed wit carriages that transfer only
lace and fine lace combinations
fine lace
tuck stitch combined with transfer lace
tuck/ pull up lace
transfer lace combined with weaving
punch/thread lace
ladder lace
punch tuck rib
drive/drop stitch lace
If one explores the openwork patterns on the site, the second selection for 24 stitch cards, the 20 pages of repeats do not differentiate between the lace categories, so the onus is on the visitor to determine proper card use. In addition, the option for switching machine brands does not readjust for changes required for the pattern to read correctly in the alternate card reader. As an example, transfer lace cards are shown with blank starting rows, ending with punched holes, a Studio brand feature, and in some cases with a punched row ending with blank rows, a Brother feature. If changes are made in machine brand selection, the only adjustments in the new image appear to be made to the numbering sequence, but not to the punched or unpunched starting and ending rows.

For punchcard users or enlarged views: printing the PDF breaks the repeat into segments required if one is using individual 60-row maximum length factory cards and not a punchcard roll. On the far right, the difference in relative size between a factory punchcard and the PDF image printed without any adjustments.  Filling in the dots with a black marker renders the to be punched holes more visible through the card, making marking prior to punching easier and faster.  For a better, printed match size, after capturing the image from the PDF for a single page outside image edges, opening it in Gimp, cropping it to content, it is then possible to scale the results to measurements of a factory punchcard equal in width and adjusted for the number of rows in the image. My card required print measurements were 14.1cm by 26.1. Scaling executed with aspect ratio is too long.  breaking the chain-link, removing size constraints The result with printing to match the card stock measurements was extremely close to the desired size, useful, but hard to photograph  Entering patterns: the translation Working with the Russian menu The saved pattern will be assigned a number, in this case, 9831In the 24 stitch repeat FI area of the site, enter the assigned number into the search field on the upper right changing the view to larger holes if preferred, the option also becomes available to separate for 2 colors DBJ  translated to “recalculating for 2 fountains”  Screen grab or save pdf, depending on needs.

Gimp update for Mac 2

The previous post on this topic: 2019/10/07/gimp-update-for-mac/
I have been spending more time exploring version 10.22 and am becoming more familiar with new features and design options. There are slight variations in behaviors depending on the Mac OS version. Windows updates happen more frequently. According to the software download site for Mac “the currently available package provides GIMP 2.10.22 and has not yet updated to the latest version, GIMP 2.10.24. We’re working on that, please check back later.”

Gimp has a wide range of paint tools The most commonly used in creating repeats for knit design are Pencil, Paintbrush, and Bucket Fill.
The Pencil tool is used to draw freehand lines with a hard edge. The main difference between it and the Paintbrush is that although both use the same type of brush, the pencil tool will not produce fuzzy edges.

Present experiments are placed in alphabetical order. Topics:
Brushes and patterns 

Colors exchange
Colors threshold see grid options
Grid options, Guides, Color separations
Symmetry Painting

There are many very good videos on using multiple versions of GIMP on Youtube. Most focus on working with very large images in huge numbers of colors, and brushes or patterns in the tutorials are often larger than the maximum stitch count on our home knitting machines capable of electronic download and with needle counts of 180-200. In addition, punchcard machines have a 24-pixel width repeat constraint. The content of such published material and tutorials can be overwhelming, but isolated techniques for the required binary bit mapped knit scale are easy to sort out.

Many knitters designing small repeats use very simple programs and enter pixels singly or copy and paste in small groups. Some simple, quick functions in Gimp can simplify and speed up the progress considerably. Punchcard knitters may use the same techniques to set up their 24 x X custom length repeats and tile the results to visualize how they line up when knitted in multiples.
Some content paraphrased from the online Gimp manual: in GIMP, a pattern is a small image used to fill areas by placing copies of side by side. You can use them with the bucket fill tool. They vary in size, are used for filling regions by tiling, that is, by placing copies of the pattern side by side like ceramic tiles. A pattern is said to be tileable if copies of it can be adjoined left-edge-to-right-edge and top-edge-to-bottom-edge without creating obvious seams, such patterns are used in standard knitting repeats. The same effect may be obtained by using the Filter, Map, Tile option on the drawn image.
With the bucket fill tool, you can choose to fill a region with a pattern instead of a solid color. To make a pattern available, place it in one of the folders in GIMP’s pattern search path which includes two folders, the system patterns folder, which you should not use or alter, and the patterns folder inside your personal GIMP directory. The .gbr (“gimp brush”) format is used for ordinary and color brushes. 
Photoshop ABR brushes are also easily imported for use.
Pressing the refresh button causes GIMP to rescan the folders in your pattern search path, adding any newly discovered patterns to the list. This button is useful if you add new patterns to a folder, and want to make them available without having to restart GIMP.
GIMP includes a set of 10 “paint tools”, which, except for the ink tool, use the same set of brushes. The brush pixmaps represent the marks that are made by single “touches” of the brush, which is desirable in working with knit scale bitmaps. Brushes can be selected by clicking on an icon in the brushes dialogue, the current brush is then shown in the Brush/Pattern/Gradient area of the Toolbox. Clicking on the brush symbol there is another way of activating the Brushes dialog.

When you use the Copy or Cut command on an image or a selection of it, a copy appears as a new brush in the upper left corner of the “Brushes” dialog. This brush will persist until you use the Copy command again. It disappears when you close GIMP.
Building a personal brush pattern library on Mac: open software preferences locate folders on the bottom left, click on plus sign aside folders icon at the bottom left, it will change to a minus sign, and folders become visible select brushes, two options will appear. If a proper choice is made for the addition of pattern files, a green button will appear single click on the filing cabinet icon on the right,  a familiar Mac finder window will appear double click on the patterns folder, its own window will appear,  right-click in the window below the last entry, a smaller window appears, choose the add new folder option. It will appear as “untitled”  and will be added to the existing folders, rename it “my brushes” or any other choice, and the new folder will be added within the brushes one Its place in the brushes list will be determined by its initial letter, the contents are in alphabetical order. For future use, any saved brush may be dragged and dropped into the named personal pattern folder icon, or into the folder after it has been expanded or opened in its own window. My opened brush folder After brushes are added, the refresh button below the brush dockable dialogue may bring them up without having to restart the program. After saving these 3 images as .gbr files and placing them in the appropriate folder they appear as available for use  To install .abr files on Mac:

create a new photoshop folder within the Gimp brushes one
Download the chosen files, drag and drop the images or folder from the downloads folder into the chosen Gimp one, they will be available after a Gimp restart
The free files I tested were very large in size, did not scale down to use for knitting cleanly, and even though they appeared to be BW they opened as RGBs making the conversion to BW indexed quite dithered. They are composed of assorted leaves and snowflakesWhen exporting self-drawn brushes, the option is offered for adding spacing surrounding the shape, here a 10% addition was chosen Patterns may be saved in a similar way. Since GIMP 2.2 you can use .png, .jpg, .bmp, .gif, or .tiff files as patterns.
Saving patterns from large to tiny may be achieved using the same method as in saving brushes. To save personal patterns, instead of choosing the file cabinet icon in preferences, one may choose the folder icon, following a similar series of steps to those above, including verifying contents of the newly created folder Use Windows, Dockable Dialogues, choose Pattern. The patterns will show on the right of the Gimp window and are viewable once you click on the fill window below the tools on the left as well.

Open the image to be filled
Click on the paint bucket tool, select the Pattern fill type. Click on the paint bucket, then on the pattern you wish to use on right, hover over the canvas with the paint tool, click on it and the image will fill in the chosen pattern.
Or click on the pattern icon, scroll through to the desired pattern, click on it, then on the paint bucket tool, hover over the canvas with the paint tool, and click on it to fill.  The + or _ option scales the size of the pattern view, it is handy when tiny or very large repeats are chosen. The canvas for the pattern fill needs to be large enough to accommodate the pattern in repeat.
If the fill fails, check to see that the bucket fill mode was not somehow changed from normal to one of the many other options Here the skull is used to fill a 400X400 canvas, an even multiple of its size If the canvas is not in a full multiple of the whole pattern, part of the repeat is cropped  Using the same rose image tiled using the Filter, Map, Tile menu produces similar results when full multiples of the image pixels are not chosen, ie. here the tiling is on an 80-pixel wide canvas as opposed to a full multiple of 25 ie 100  Designing tiny repeats:
Begin with the image in black and white indexed mode. 
To draw my repeats, I used 1800X magnification, with grid view, exported the files as png, and dragged them into my own Gimp patterns folder.
If the goal is full punchcard repeat illustrations, then by default the width of the image to be filled needs to be 24 pixels wide, and a minimum of 36 rows high. If working with tuck stitch, punched squares are black pixels, unpunched ones the white, creating the tucked loops. Using the bucket tool to fill the image is accomplished with a simple, very quick stroke  The rectangle tool may be used to isolate a segment of the first repeat and the area may then be filled with a different pattern. Brushes may be resized as needed, pasted on the previously filled image, guides are helpful in their placement.  Grids and Guides: my view was magnified X 2800, the canvas measured 24 X 36 pixels.
Magnification may be set using the pull-down below the image window, where any number listed may be chosen or typed in and set by hitting the return key, or by choosing the zoom tool. Click only on the image, the zoom is applied to the whole image. If the pointer is used, click-and-drag the mouse pointer to create a zoom rectangle. The biggest dimension of the rectangle will correspond to the size of the image window. You can get to the Zoom Tool from the Image menu through Tools, Zoom, or by clicking the magnifying glass in the toolbox Anyone needing an adjustable grid superimposed on an existing image may use the Configure Grid command to set the properties of the grid and display it over the image while working on it.
One can choose the color of the gridlines, and the spacing and offsets from the origin of the image, independently for the horizontal and vertical grid lines. The configure grid dialogue:  The five different grid styles: Intersections, dots: the least visible, a simple dot at each intersection of the grid linesIntersections, crosshairs: a plus-shaped crosshair at each intersection of the grid lines  Dashed: dashed lines in the foreground color of the gridDouble dashed: dashed lines, where the foreground and background colors of the grid alternate, looks the same as above when the image is in BW indexed mode. It is also hard to discern the separate colors in RGB mode because the dashes are so small and so close together,  Solid: shows solid grid lines in the foreground color of the grid Foreground and Background colors: in RGB Mode, click on the foreground color to select a new color for the grid, click OK Spacing: for use illustrations see GRIDS: OPTIONS
Width and height: select the cell size of the grid and the unit of measurement
Offset: moves the origin of the first cell, by the fault the grid begins at the coordinate origin, 0,0
The Snap to Grid command enables and disables snap to grid. When snap to grid is enabled, and a selection is moved or placed, the grid points pull on it when it approaches making accurate placement easier. If the magnification is high enough, the placement of your pencil or brush will be outlined in a dotted line. Here the snap to the area for a 3-pixel pencil is shown highlighting its possible placement location.  This command is found in the image menubar through View, Snap to Grid.

GUIDESto configure guides, simply click on one of the rulers in the image window and pull out a guide, while holding down the mouse Left Button or side. The guide is then displayed as a blue, dashed line, which follows the pointer. Releasing the mouse will place it.  As soon a guide is created, the “Move” tool is activated and the mouse pointer changes to the Move icon.
You can create as many guides as you like, positioned wherever you like. If the grid is set to a 1X1 square pixel default with a line border, at any point the Image, Configure, Grid option may be used to change the ground view  To move a guide, activate the Move tool in the Toolbox, then click on the guide (it will turn red), and drag it to a new location. Click-and-drag the intersection of two guides to move them together. Create as many guides as needed, positioned appropriately for the design. To delete a guide, simply drag it outside the image. 
Holding down the Shift key moves everything but a guide, using the guides as an effective alignment aid. You can remove all the guides with the Image, Guides, Remove all Guides command.
Working on punchcard repeats whether in designing for cards or to create a BMP for electronic download using a published repeat, guides may be set to outline 6X6 blocks as seen in factory issued Brother punchcards, or to create custom templates.  For example, lace designs have few pixels. Horizontal guides may be added or moved at intervals between repeat segments, making certain the two knit rows are left blank as one continues in entering the proper pixels. The vertical guides help in orienting and locating the pixels in design blocks to match the source.  With guides in place, pattern fill may be used, adding shapes using the tools, or brushes to place motifs. A sample of a knit repeat using the rectangle tool and the paint bucket tool combination to create filled rectangles placed in relationship to guides, creating a tuck pattern with interspersed plain knit rectangular shapes Built-in or custom brushes may be superimposed on a bucket-filled ground. Create an image in the desired width and height, here 24 X 24, magnify at least X 800 for a grid view.
Fill with a pattern.
Place the chosen brush on the patterned ground, adjust the size and placement of the brush until satisfied, save the image.
Consider the end-use for the pattern. For example, the designs below left would be suitable for tuck stitch, the same designs would need to be color reversed if the plan is to use them to knit thread lace. Both the original and the new image should be set to BW indexed mode. Developing a brick version of the repeat is easy and quick. With the original image open, create a new image with the same width but twice its height, 24X48.
Set the magnification for both images to the same number, adjusting the number of both if needed so the longer canvas is in full view.
Configure the grid as preferred on the new image, make it visible. Snap to grid is useful, may not be necessary when working in such a scale.
Copy the full starting image and paste it on the bottom of the new.
Guides may be put in place to adjust for the pattern shift in the top half of the new image. A single, center guide, in this case, was sufficient.
The full image copy is still available, align and paste it again, its left side to the right of the center guide, anchor it.
Paste its right side to the left of the center guide and anchor that in placealso. Undo and repeat steps if needed.
Check the alignment of the full repeat by map tiling, if satisfied, export it as PNG or BMP for future download.COLORS EXCHANGE
Color exchanges to test designs in different colorways may be made easily and quickly using the program. To test the concept begin with a simple repeat already tested for tiling originally saved in indexed black and white colors This icon shows the default foreground and background colors  The black is the foreground color, the white is the background.

Using such small images I often work in 800X magnification. Open the image, choose sizing, scaling, or magnification if necessary, convert to RGB mode then from the colors menu choose map, color exchange. The color exchange window will appear. Here the white “from color” is left undisturbed. Select the dropper next to the “to color”, then click on the image on the color you wish to change, a palette window will appear. Make your choice, the color exchange window will now have substituted the chosen color for the black, click OK, and white design areas are now changed to the chosen blue globally. The process may then be repeated with the second color if desired.  The color exchange window will show white as the default “from color”. Click on the white bar, choose black from the palette window or use the dropper to select black from the image. The from color will then appear as black. Repeat selection with the dropper from the right of the “to color” bar on any black pixels in the image, choose the color from the palette window to replace it, the color exchange window will display the new “to color”. Click OK, job done. The process may be repeated multiple times on the same design or used on large-scale ones, giving one some idea as to whether or not to really commit to the estimated colors. I recently had reason to review old PC files from my Passap knitting days and came across several cut files that when converted to png format appeared in colors rather than black and white, leading me to experiment with color exchange again.  The image for the first experiment is part of a crib blanket by Cheryl GilesThe process: do not alter the original image ie. by resizing, which seems to change the color mapping responses
load the image in RGB mode
working with the foreground color, click once on the white, use the color picker to choose a color, in this case, orange, a palette window will appear, click OK, the background color will change accordingly,  double click on the now orange background to call up its palette window, keep that window open, go to colors filter, map, color exchange
double click on the from color, the white, in the exchange window
match its values to the saved palette window working from the top down, you may find some of the remaining numbers self-correct
in the original image orange, is now exchanged for black continue, repeating the process with the alternate color, in this case, yellow. At that point, the in-process image will appear as solid black. Click on the black in the exchange window to color twice, choose white from the palette selection, click OK, and the conversion is complete.



Punchcard users may use this method to visualize which holes to punch, though this particular repeat would need to be reduced in stitch count in order to be usable. Similar charts may be adapted and used for other textile techniques such as cross-stitch or even filet crochet.

Grids help with the precise placement of pixels when designing using pixels to represent stitches and rows. The grid is not visible until it is activated via the View, Show Grid option in the Image menu. To create a custom grid, the Image, Configure Grid from the Image menu brings up a dialogue that allows you to do so. Snap to Grid causes the pointer to “warp” perfectly to any grid line located within a certain distance. In most instances, when drawing repeats a 1X1 pixel grid works well on a canvas magnified enough for it to be visible when filling in cells, I recommend a starting magnification of X800.
Anyone needing an adjustable grid superimposed on an existing colored image may now adjust the grid size to suit while viewing the resulting changes. The beginning image and grid size both need to be large enough for the grid to be visible. Use the show grid, configure grid commands  The intact chain-link fixes the width and height aspect ratio of grid cells Considering the possible smallest repeat, breaking the chain link, changing values progressively while viewing the results brings one closer to matching units  The image itself may be scaled concurrently to tweak grid border alignments. The final grid size below is 18X18,  the image size is shown after scaling from a width of 277 pixels (with a broken link at that time) to a final 270 pixels in width The screengrab of the above center, with a superimposed new grid; note the image, in this case, was also offset for better placement, a 3-pixel pencil was used to isolate the border of the possible smallest repeat Using Filter, Map, Tile to check alignments  The repeat reduced to 12 stitches, suitable for punchcard, and tiled to check alignments. Translating the colored image to BW indexed may take several steps and some clean-up if only Gimp is used to process it. With the colored large-scale isolated repeat, the image is opened in Gimp. The Threshold tool transforms the current layer or the selection into a black and white image, where white pixels represent the pixels of the image whose Value is in the threshold range, and black pixels represent pixels with Value out of the threshold range. It may be activated from the pull-down colors menu or from the toolbox.   The color image will temporarily disappear, adjust levels. Scaling to repeat size: check the image size, making certain the present dimensions match a multiple of the final repeat count for stitches and rows. If adjustments are required, breaking the chain-link allows for each count to be adjusted independently from the other. In the final scaling, use the closed chain link, adjust numbers, magnify the repeat, checking it with a superimposed grid for any missing or out-of-place cells. Check the alignment, then save the single repeat, which in this case is 14X14, ready for download Color separations: there are occasions where very small repeats need to be scaled in height only for color separations. I have found such scaling to be inaccurate using the option, such as here, both of the small, single repeat, and in scaling its tiled version. The triangle motif was used in many of my early posts on color separations for DBJ and its backing options.  On a long enough canvas, the grid may be adjusted to 1 pixel by four in height. With that number of cells filled in with black in this case, if the 1X4 unit is captured with the rectangle tool, it will appear in the brush menu and will be available for use with the pencil tool for drawing with single strokes until one quits the program unless the unit is saved for future use as described via preferences  Using RGB mode, the two-color redrawn image is redrawn, A. The grid may be adjusted to 1X 1 again, B. Using magnification, I often use X1800, pairs of rows may be selected for either color invert or value invert color options. The first will add a third color, seen in the chart bottom, the second will yield a 2 color image, seen in the chart top, B.  I have had no success with using keyboard commands for the action using my OS, find it easier visually to deal with the three colors than with the 2, especially in longer repeats. C: the extra color pixels in the rows with black pixels are filled with white. D: the third color pixel rows are filled with black. D the final repeat may be color indexed to BW and saved for download.  The appearance of the final repeat when color reversed Another comparison of the 2 options for altering every other pair of rows in the specific color separation for a mosaic repeat. There is less filling in of cells with a different color, but in large files especially, I feel the result would become far more visually confusing to track. For more details on the specific mosaic, see  2021/01/27/mosaics-and-mazes-charting-meet-numbers-gimp-3/

Information summary from the online manual on working with symmetry:
you can access this dialog from the image Menu bar through Windows-Dockable- Dialogs-Symmetry Painting, its icon appears below at the top right A drop-down list offers four options. As soon as you check a type of symmetry, axes appear as dotted green lines in the image window and you can start painting with the brush you have chosen.
The default position for the symmetry axis is the middle of the image window. You can place the axis where you want using the Horizontal axis position and Vertical axis position.
Disable brush transform: when you transform the drawing, the brush itself will end up transformed as well. For instance, in a mirror transform, not only will your drawing on the right of the canvas be mirrored on the left, but the brush itself is obviously “flipped” on the left. If for some reason, you want the drawn lines to be mirrored (or other transformation) but not the brush outline itself, you can check this box.
“Tiling” is a translational symmetry, which can be finite (with a maximum of strokes) or infinite. In the latter case, it is the perfect tool to create patterns or seamless tiles, at painting time. This mode covers the image with strokes.
Interval X Interval Y: these are the intervals on the X and Y axis, in pixels, between stroke centers.
Shift: this is the shift between lines on the X-axis, in pixels.
Max strokes X, Max strokes Y: these are the maximal number of brush strokes on the X and Y-axis. Default is 0, which means no limit, according to the image size.
Using a large image, testing few iterations, helps one understand the process. The pepper brush is provided in the program and is used in the tutorial on the Gimp site. Most such tutorials are intended for working on far larger and higher resolution images, while knitting is binary and at the opposite end of the spectrum in scale and required image size. The original brush is 220 pixels in size, the maximum number of needles per pixels on standard machines programmable at one time is 200. For exploration, any of the built-in brushes may be used, I began by scaling the pepper to 50 pixels, then moved on to a self-drawn, equal size flower motif. When choosing canvas file size, consider a multiple of the brush size. Drawing repeats uses the pencil tool.   Working with potential knit repeats the scale is reduced further. Magnification is useful for the evaluation of repeats. The smallest repeat segments for use on electronic machines may be isolated. The filter map, tile option easily verify how the repeats line up overall. Cropping a 24 stitch width and tiling that also visualizes the suitability of the repeat for use on punchcards with the 24 stitch limitation.  Grid view helps identify any need for “clean up”.
This rose is 24 stitches wide by 25 rows in height Open the chosen file in Gimp. Create a new file in a canvas size considering a multiple of the original.
When the Copy or Cut command is used on an image or a selection of it, a copy appears as a new brush in the upper left corner of the “Brushes” dialog. This brush will persist until you use the Copy command again. It disappears when GIMP is closed.
With the single repeat opened in Gimp, magnified several times, click on the image and use the copy command. The image will appear in the symmetry dialogue. The position may vary depending on whether the program has been closed and relaunched between episodes of testing the process. Create a new file, large enough to accommodate a multiple of the original number of pixels, adding pixels for spacing between or above and below designs, set the magnification to the same number as that of the clipboard image, left-click on the brush icon, choose the image saved in the clipboard and a type of symmetry and accompanying settings, click on pencil tool, the motif will appear as on the above right, paste the image on the new canvas, undo and repeat setting adjustments until satisfied with the distribution of motifs.
Some ways of varying repeat positions working with motifs in networks were illustrated in the post To develop a brick repeat I began with a canvas twice that of the original rose, 48X50 pixels, isolated the smallest repeat, used the filter map tile option to test its all over alignment The 24X50 repeat: To decrease crowding, using the original image, the new canvas is now 40X60, with the shift decreased from 12 to 8 pixels. The result did not tile properly when mapped, using magnification 800X with a viewed grid the final repeat, 29X60 was isolated Being more deliberate with the math leads to a full, successful repeat 

Working on the gridded image, drawing straight lines to isolate color change areas in chosen colors followed by flood filling, one may begin to visualize changing the ground color behind the motif repeats Using that small triangular 8X8 repeat open in Gimp, or draw any small shape if designed by hand, remove the grid. Before using it as a brush, reduce mode to 2 colors, magnify X800. Open a new file. I found the latter needed to be increasingly small as well for the repeats to be placed accurately. After tiling using symmetry, filter, map, tile from the filter menu to check for multiple repeat alignment.   Again, preemptive math will yield images that avoid further processing. It is up to the user to recognize any problems,  the repeat here needs to and can be isolated correctly from the file on the left, it is actually only 16 rows high. Here the adjusted repeat is created on a 24X16 canvas with the same symmetry settings, and filter/mapped/tiled There may be multiple ways to achieve the same result with each motif. Here the same repeat is executed two different ways  The above repeat was cropped and adjusted to 16 stitch width and 8 row height, the file saved, and the process repeated  Using symmetry once more, remember to adjust the pencil size.  For the pinwheel shape I was unable to use color exchange successfully on the above images, but with the saved 2 colors indexed red and white repeat both img2track and ayab appeared to load the repeat successfully. The map color exchange was successful using the steps described at the top of the post when beginning with the repeat drawn in a black and white version.  

A different approach, experimenting with built-in brushes: symmetry preferences remain constant, the brush size is reduced. The results are best if the canvas is created in black and white indexed mode to start with, and shapes reduce with varying degrees of success. The numbers reflect brush sizes in each dot pattern. Different types of symmetry may be applied to the same image

For afghans or wall art, if one is attracted to large shapes, drawing in mandala symmetry on large canvas size is as gratifying and immediate as when using a spirograph, the results happen in seconds, these were drawn using 32 points. Steps may easily be undone along the way as one attempts to make the images more complex.

My first non repetitive DBJ explorations on 930


I created large-scale nonrepetitive image garments very early in my knitting career using Cochenille Bitknitter and Commodore computers linked to a Passap E6000. Over time my focus changed considerably, with any production knitting moving onto accessories as I began to make items for sale in galleries and in shows, most often single bed on a Brother 910. If knitting is a primary source of income, one needs to consider production time management, material costs, and what the local market will bear in terms of pricing.
A post, written in 2018, began to explore two-color-dbj-non-repetitive-images-electronic-kms/. At that time I did not have a machine model capable of using img2track.
An orphaned 930 entered my life, and with rare exceptions, over the past few years, my blog sample swatches have been knit using img2track, which I have found easy, reliable, with any programming errors due to the operator issues including learning the differences from 910 programming and remembering to actually use them.
No matter how long any of us have been knitting, there can be many aaargh moments both in everyday knitting and when exploring new techniques.
I have a supply of lovely 2/48 cash-wool in royal blue, black, and grey. Three strands worked predictably on my punchcard machine in a series of my spiky scarves, shown in progress on the machine. Nearly all my previous dbj pieces have been knit on a Passap E6000. The 930 experience for such repeats is new to me. With some help from Tanya Cunnigham in reviewing steps required when using img2track, I returned to cellular automata repeat saved years ago.
I encountered problems with the triple strands of blue not feeding evenly, here both colors were picked up by the changer accidentally, I realized the issue, trying to unravel the row of knitting produced this That provided an opportunity to decide I preferred the reverse color placement as well as wanting a thicker ply for the white, resulting in twice the fun with 2 colors, and another scrapped sample Switching the white to a single-ply thicker yarn made its stitch formation far more manageable. The blue however seemed to have a single strand of the three with a propensity for catching on gate pegs. I tried tension adjustments, the usual tips in managing static. At about row 1,000 out of 1288 rows, I realized I had an issue with both yarns being caught on gate pegs. In trying to lift the stitches off, the yarn broke but gave with no immediate visible clues, the dropped stitches and a lovely hole, as a result, appeared when knitting had progressed far enough below the current knit rows. On the left, the work is shown still on the machine, while on the right, it is off the machine, and in the process of a patch job with a temporary accessory and stitch holder in place. I was able to achieve a reasonable repair on the knit side, but the birdseye pattern on the reverse is a bit scrambled. For folks that are not familiar with electronics and are curious, the 930 has the smallest memory of the later Brother electronic models. My pattern repeat is 74 stitches wide by 644 rows in height. The user manual explains: the KH-930 takes just a few seconds to load the track because the memory holds only 2 KB of data (about 13000 stitches). Later models have a much larger memory (32 KB). The KH-940 and KH-950i require 42 seconds to load a track. The KH-965i and KH-970 load only the requested pattern, so the loading time depends on the size of the pattern. img2track indicates progress as the data is sent to the KM. When the pattern has finished loading, the KM should beep, and show the green READY light and a 1 in the display (for row 1). The program automatically chooses Selector 2 for a single image and centers it. You may change this by using the normal pattern selecting process on the knitting machine, choose Selector 1 for all-over patterning, or use Selector 2 and choose a different location on the needle bed to center the pattern. If your pattern was divided into more than one track, you will have to load successive tracks when completing the previous track, specific instructions are given for programming subsequent tracks. My pattern was broken down into 4 tracks.
The cable used for downloads to the machine is used externally, no alterations to the machine’s hardware are required as when using Ayab on the 910. The pattern is stored in the machine, so the computer needs to be awake only during downloads, not constantly as in programs that use knit-from-screen.
Each track for 2 color DBJ using the KRC built-in separation is entered in numerical order as a new pattern with first-row preselection from the left to the right and first row knit from right to left toward the color changer. If the repeat is not planned for the number of needles in use, any position or change to all-over design needs to be re-entered, and the KRC button must also be set again.
Cam button settings are set according to the chosen dbj variations for either or both beds. End needle selection is usually canceled. In some patterns using it can create an interesting beaded edge on either side, which is worth testing on small samples to determine one’s preference.
I like to plan my pieces beginning with the dark color, plan my repeats with the deliberate placement of both colors, and any scaling in the pattern BMP prior to download, using Gimp. I also prefer to have color 1 as the dark, color 2 as the light. The default in the Japanese DBJ separation uses the light color, white squares, as color 1. Out of habit I color reverse my images so my first preselected row from right to left can just knit my black squares rather than the white, and I can continue my motifs as I intended while having machine prompts for each color also match.
Pausing knitting is easy as long as the needle selection is not disturbed. Ending with COR avoids any confusion about which color should be used next. Starting outside the set mark, turn the machine back on, and simply continue in pattern with appropriate color changes.
Tanya Cunningham manages and moderates the membership, settings, and posts for the Img2track – For Machine Knitters group on Facebook.
These were her tips and reminders to me for handling pauses in knitting immediately after the following track in the sequence is first downloaded: let’s say that either some needles got pushed in or repositioned, or for whatever reason, you don’t have certainty that the last row of needle selection is reliable, and you want to “re-select” the last row before you knit it, the last track you knitted should still be in the memory, even though you’ve completed that part of the pattern. 
1. Push all needles back to Pos B. 
2. remove the yarn from the feeder, disconnect the K carriage from the R carriage. 
3. Turn Change/Selector knob from KCII to N (NOTE, this will cause your PART buttons to de-select) 
4. press BOTH PART buttons. 
5. Move K carriage to right. No needles will knit, since all are in POS B, and both PART buttons are depressed, AND no needles will select, since you’ve moved the change/selector knob to N, and the memo will not record any advancement of row. (However, if you’re using your mechanical row counter, it WILL record a row, and one on the way back so plan to either disable the ribber arm or plan to turn the counter back 2 rows)
6. Now you will have to re-select the last row of needles for the track you’ve most recently knitted. First, verify that KRC is activated. Now, you will have to push the up/down arrow buttons to select the very last row of the pattern which will be an even number, and color 1. Depending on whether the carriage was moved in such a way as to activate the sensor enough to cause the memo to advance, you may be able to simply use the row that’s showing, but even beginning the movement of the carriage may advance it. To be sure, what I do is to advance (in this case to Row 1 Color 1), and then back up one row, using the arrow buttons. 
7. Move your Change/Selector knob to KCII, be sure to move outside the turn mark. Verify KRC; memo says last row, color 1; both PART buttons in. Now, move your carriage right-to-left, to select the last row of the previous track. 
8. Load color 1 in the carriage, load next track into the machine, KRC selected.
9. Now, as you knit to the right, you will be knitting the last row of the previous track, and selecting needles for the first row of the next track. Carry on.

In terms of generating cellular automata math-based patterns, the Wolfram website is a great place to explore repeats. A player, temporarily unavailable to Mac users is presently available, allows for the download of interactive demos in .cdf format. In terms of knitting any of the repeats, the most suitable appear to be ones that are generated in black and white to start with. Not all are, and at times changing the mode to bitmapped in programs such as Gimp can produce a glitched effect. Though the latter may be interesting and desirable to some, I prefer clean lines and diagonals along with identifiable shifts in the scale of any triangular components.

I am often amazed at the speed with which time passes, previous related posts: 2015/12/09/cellular-automata-charts-for-knitting-etc/
Previously knit repeats 2017/09/11/my-new-knitting-projects/

Weaving drafts may also serve as inspiration for knitting repeats. Posts with related content: 2015/11/28/weaving-drafts-as-inspiration-for-other-textile-techniques/, and 2018/07/02/numbers-to-gimp-to-create-images-for-electronic-download/. These images are extracted from a draft for an advancing twill. One may explore segment placement and color reversals easily using programs such as Gimp. There is also potential for exchanging colors to get a sense of how the pattern might appear in different colorways My planned test repeat is 76 stitches wide by 556 rows high.

Tuck trims 4 and other edgings


In the FB machine knitting groups questions about tuck-lace trims have once again surfaced with regards to their design and use as edge finishes or decorative details. Some automated potential details have been covered in previous posts
“Crochet” meets machine knitting techniques: tuck lace trims (and fabrics 1)
Tuck lace trims (and fabrics 2)
Ribber trims 3: one trim, four variations
Ribber trims 2
Ribber trims/edgings 1
The trims, however, may easily be created on any machine using hand needle selection and holding techniques. Over the years a number of names have been assigned to such trims, from idiot’s delight to shell, cockle shell, double shell, and scallop shell.
Trims are generally knit vertically, are often quite “lacey”, applied upon completion, generally with their knit side out. Some people think of them as mock crochet. They can go from tiny to heavier double-edge versions.
Generally, they benefit from being knit slowly with some weight to help hold the stitches in place and have the groups of tuck loops knit off properly. Start with a few rows of waste yarn and ravel cord to anchor to hold the weight, follow with a permanent cast on-on needles represented by grey squares in each group. Knit 2 rows on all needles and begin in the pattern. The method for creating tucked loops manually is to bring needles out to hold after setting the knit carriage accordingly. Until those same needles are pushed back into work loops will build on their shanks and will be knit off when the involved needles are pushed back into work. The limit with automated patterning for tuck in 4.5 mm machines, unless very thin yarn is used, is often 4 rows. There is greater tolerance in tucks created by hand techniques, but as with any fabric, it is best to test on swatches prior to committing to significant lengths of fabric. 
When knitting trims and ruffles, end with several rows of waste yarn in a contrasting color, allowing for unraveling and binding off after application if the trim is too long, or for unraveling to a knit row and knitting more if the initial length is too short. Seam-as-you-knit might not be the best method to use if the intent is to retain the shell-shaped forms trim sides.
It is possible to visualize repeats both singly and in groups using tools from simple graph paper to spreadsheets. Japanese machines may not tolerate more than 4 rows of held or tucked loops unless the yarn is on the thin side, machines like Passap or Superba have a far greater tolerance.
Pivoting around a center stitch and adding width in vertical trims makes them foldable around a finished edge. When using electronic machines the garment’s finished edge may be picked up and the repeat for some of the trims can be programmed on the width of the piece for a predetermined height and bound off. If one is using a punchcard with single repeat vertical patterning or for more than one vertical trim with blank spaces in between them, the card would not be suitable for a finish on a horizontal knit edge.

To knit: bring needles in positions represented by yellow squares out to hold,  push back to knit by the number of rows indicated in the chart.
A good source for pattern ideas can be found in punchcard volumes in the sections marked for thread lace. To add to the mix, once the repeat is worked out, transferring needles intended to be left out of work on the main bed may be transferred to the ribber when knitting trims as well.
Segments marked with green cells may be grouped in a variety of ways to create repeats in different widths, asymmetrical ones are also a possible consideration
Two repeats on a single cardThe process for knitting a sample as a hand technique: Cast on the 7 stitches marked in work, bring needles2, 6, and 10 to holding position set the knit carriage to hold
knit 4 or chosen number of rows
push needles back into work position and knit one or chosen number of rows
return needles 2, 6, and 10 to hold
repeat the process for the desired length
bind off or remove onto waste yarn
An electronic or punchcard repeat for 4 tuck row: I like to start my repeats with an all knit row when possible. The design may be knit as a single motif, and though it is symmetrical whether the machine model used flips the image horizontally or not can have an effect on whether the uneven number of needles will be to the left or to the right of 0. If there is any question a few air knit rows will clarify pattern needle placement.
The automated repeat: The samples below were knit using a 2/8 wool, at T4, are shown folded along their center on the right of the photos, with the open edge on the left as they came off the machine. The usual single bed tension for this yarn might be 7 or 8, depending on stitch type. The greater the number of knit stitches on either bed, the closer the tension will have to be adjusted to that used in stocking stitch for the same yarn. Wool also has memory, will want to roll to knit side at the top and bottom, to the purl side along vertical edges, steps often need to be taken to reduce the rolls. Using this repeat as a stand-alone, the roll is severe, with the cast-off edge picked up, continue from there, a rolled edge with no stitching required is formed, no further finishing required, is shown after light steaming Even if a repeat for automating the trim or edging is designed and may have been used before, it is best to test the repeat as a hand technique in any new or untested yarn first to see how many loops can build up before the stitches on each side may not knit, or the loops themselves might not knit off properly as a group on the next all knit row. Five rows were the limit for this yarn A bound off edge was picked up, purl side facing, a side edge could be as well. Test to see which side facing may suit your piece best. Ten plain knit rows were followed by holding for 5 rows on every sixth needle, followed by a central single all knit row, 5 more rows held on the same needles locations, ending with 9 rows knit on all needles, and the trim was bound off. It may be folded to the purl or the knit side before being stitched into place and is likely to require some blocking. A variety of edgings may be produced by simply hooking up ladder floats created by leaving needles out of work after X number of rows. In this instance chain cast on over 11 needles, dropping the center 5 chains and taking the corresponding needles out of work.
Knit 12 rows.
Pick up six floats and the chain from the start of the piece, bring them to the front of the knit, and place them on the needle marked with red cells at the right.
Knit 6 rows, pick up 6 floats again, place them on needle marked with red cells to the left,
repeat This variation uses the thicker blue yarn, knit at tension 4; 12 rows are knit before hooking up the lower groups of six ladders, which makes the floats easier to pick up or count using a single eye tool. Repeating selection on the same side allows the trim to be easily bent around corners  Trims using holding alone border on the possibility of automation using slip stitch programming. A simple one to start: cast on 7 stitches, with the center needle out of work. Knit a few rows, set knit carriage to hold.
COR: push needles at left out to hold position
knit 8 or chosen even number of  rows on needles 5, 6, and 7 on the right
COR: push needles 1, 2, and 3 on left to D position, knit 3 or a preferred odd number of rows, ending with the carriage on the left
COL: reverse the holding sequence  The single out-of-work needle produces a ladder that nearly disappears after the trim relaxes, any our of work needle arrangement may be tried between the two groups of 3 needles in work.
Adding holding: cast on needle arrangement shown. The 3 stitches will roll to the purl side creating an edge that looks very similar on both sides of the trim. knit 3 or more rows, end COL
bring the 3 needles on the right out to hold, knit a row
COR wrap the inside needle of the 3 in holding, knit back to left 5 times
COR knit 5 rows (or DIY odd number), ending on the opposite side
COL reverse shaping

Interlock explorations 2; adding needles out of work

Most variations using tuck settings will loosen the fabric structure, slip stitches will narrow it. The behavior is consistent in working on both single and double beds. Color changes may be added.
There are only very short descriptions and schematics for the more complex tuck interlocks online, making attempting them a puzzle, where efforts at piecing it may not necessarily lead to correct answers, but still produce interesting knits. The ISO (the International Organization for Standardization) is a worldwide federation of national standards bodies that draft international standards for subjects including knitting. My charts for the tuck interlocks were personal interpretations based on a few of their illustrations, among which is this for cross tuck 1, which appears to be the most straightforward, with every needle knitting on one bed, while the other works the basic 2X2 stitch alternating repeat on either one of the 2 beds translated for knitting, patterning may be used on either bed, with the opposite bed set to knit every stitch. If patterning is on the ribber, have the first and last needles in work on the main bed. The top bed is set to tuck in both directions, the fabric is shown lightly stretched and could conceivably be used to create a ruffled edge when followed by narrower stitch types ie. every needle rib or Milano variants Changing settings: with the knit carriage set to slip in one direction, knit in the other, the ribber knitting every row
Needles may be taken out of work to create pleats in every needle ribs, alternating their placement between the 2 beds. Knit stitches stabilize tuck ones. Here every other needle is taken out of work on only one bed. The tuck loops are more visible in any open spaces between the vertical rows of ribbed stitches. The ribber will knit every row on the same needles aligning directly above each other, thus ruling out full pitch.
The needles are set up so that the first and last are in use on the ribber, ensuring that a knit stitch will be on the side of any tuck stitch selected on the top bed, on the top bed the every other needle tuck selection reverses as the direction of the knit carriage does, needles brought forward knit, the ones skipped hold tuck loops in their needle hooks,  the resulting fabric Other explorations with needle out of work:
Milano waffle: single color, 4 passes with every needle knitting, 4 passes tubular, more passes of each may be added to distribute color changes. The number of needles in work on the main bed remains fixed. Choosing spacing between needles in work on the main bed A working repeat with 4 circular rows, 6 full rows knit  My first swatch in the technique was in response to a Ravelry member share describing the stitch pattern used in a finished garment  The main bed is programmed, set to slip both ways after the first preselection row. After 2 rows knit on both beds, the ribber is then switched to slip in one direction, knit in the other in response to needle selection on the top bed. Main bed needles out ribber slips, main bed needles in B, ribber knits. After 4 circular passes, the ribber is again set to knit for 2 rows. The appearance during knit rows followed by float formation when only the top bed knits The resulting grid may be used as a guide for hand techniques off the machine in isolated areas or all over Repeating the experiment with  2 stitches on each edge, this time disengaging the ribber and knitting 2 rows only on the top bed only rather than knitting circular rows and changing ribber settings. The floats are brought closer together, the fabric is far quicker to knit. Needle arrangements may be varied to accommodate thicker yarns, or alter the texture by varying both the number of knit rows and circular ones  Windowpane bourrelet: beds are supposedly at full pitch, I had better success at half-pitch. The same bed is used for single bed rows as for basic bourrelet, a color change to try: every 6 rows Because the top bed needles are in pairs, the EON selection remains evident, each of the first 2 passes completes one row of knitting.
When only the top bed knits, floats are formed between the needles in work Knitting went more smoothly when 3 needles on the top bed were used on each end The ribber carriage was disengaged to allow the pattern to knit only on the top bed. When there are needles out of work, floats will be created between the needles in work. The length of the swatch was determined when I noticed the yarn was not properly placed in the feeder, and I had already begun to drop stitches on the left side. It is one of the things to watch for, and which may merit a small preventive hack to keep the yarn from accidentally slipping out of its proper place. Half Milano with tucked long stitch: the main bed needles will tuck one row, then slip one row. The ribber needles will first knit a row, then slip a row while the second bed knits both rows. Then the ribber needles knit one row then slip a row while the second bed knits two rows. I have had no success with trying to execute my interpretation of the directions without getting floats on the top bed, and the photo in Machine Knitter’s Guide to Creating Fabrics is not clear enough to distinguish if there indeed are floats on the surface of the fabric. The experimental repeat Having the ribber knit every row produces many more rows on the purl side than on the knit, so the vertical all knit columns do ripple a bit. In this stitch version, with pattern knitting beginning from the left, the main bed is set to alternately tuck and slip using the half-pitch setting row one preselected for knitting the first row has been knit, the second knit row preselected the second row knit, no preselection for tuck or slip the tuck row is formed with the knit pass to the right, no preselection the row of stitches is skipped on the way to the left, preselecting for the next first knit row, tuck loops visible on top of the hooks of the selected needles the process is repeated. The resulting fabric:  Tucked pique: knit the same as for pique, but with cams set for tuck on the top bed, set beds at half-pitch.In DIY the potential for exploration is endless. As always, if needles are out of work on the main bed, end needle selection is canceled. Here slip setting in both directions is used, along with needles out of work on both beds, the 1X1 needle repeat is programmed. Set up is with ribber needles in work between needles preselected for knit stitches on the top bed. Beginning patterning on the left after the initial preselection from the right, the ribber setting:
the result has floats on the purl side, a slightly pleated look on the knit side. Playing with color and texture: use 2 or 3, change colors every 2 rows, every 4, or at the end of each full pattern repeat.
Change one or both cams from slip to tuck.
Try adding racking when using tucking on the main bed
Vary working needle arrangements with interlock settings.

The ISO illustrations gave clues as to whether the same number of needles are at work in any pass on each bed. The intent with the second pass in each pair of passes is to create a slipped,  tucked, or knit stitch in between the alternate needles on the opposite bed.
Cross miss interlock: in this instance, tuck loops alone with no in-between knit stitches are created on the top bed, in the same spots where stitches were slipped on the previous pass. Starting side does not matter, but being consistent makes experimentation easier to understand and follow. The lili buttons, set to slip in both directions remain unchanged on the ribber carriage throughout. The knit carriage is set to slip in both directions as well as to hold. My swatch began with a knit stitch selection on the top bed, marked with a red line the length of the repeat below, and needles were arranged accordingly. The tuck loops are created using a hand technique and holding combined with patterning
This shows the elongated stitches between ones that will be knit on the next pass. On rows 3 and 6 of the pattern, there will be no needle pre-selection, but the elongated slipped stitches will still be identifiable. After both no preselection row bring alternate needles out to hold using any EON needle tool. In my case, COL, I began with needle 1 on the left on row 3, alternating beginning with needle 2 on the left on row 6. The number of rows in between hand techs is an odd one, so sides for the hand tech will alter as well. This shows the tuck loops formed EON as the carriages travel to the right.
Prior to resuming pattern knitting, needles with loops on them need to be returned to the B position, maintaining the EON needle preselection for the next pass  
Repeat the process when design row 6 is reached, beginning with needle 2 on the left. The texture appears on the purl side of the piece, shown on the left
This repeat uses 6 passes as well. The tuck loops on the top bed occur above slipped stitches in the previous pass, which may be replicated, but the real problem is that every third row on the ribber is also having to tuck on specific needles with no knit stitches between them. The tuck loops happen directly above knit stitches formed in the previous row if the tucking lever is changed manually from R to P on those rows. That is a lot to juggle, a noHere the eon tuck would fall on slipped stitches in the previous pass, so that is doable. It is possible to fool the lili selection into believing there are extra needles in work on each side of the ribber, which can “make” the first stitch on either side knit rather than slip or tuck. The method is used in creating a striper backing in Brother DBJ  and would require fiddling with needles on the ribber in an irregular selection repeat as well as the hand technique on the top bed. Another definite noThis pattern repeat is a short one, the changes are more regular on the ribber. The hand tech tuck stitches could be formed for 2 rows with all stitches getting worked back to B position in between those preselected for the next pattern row. The lili buttons need to get fooled after alternating pairs of rows, the start of several nos for me.

Intarsia without an intarsia carriage on Brother machines

I recently have been browsing through some of my machine manuals and found these references on methods for executing simple intarsia patterns, the type I usually associate with holding hand techniques. The knit carriage is used, the yarn is placed on the floor in front of the machine rather than fed through the yarn mast. I have not tried either method, am sharing the information for anyone who has not come across the information and may want to give the techniques a try. 

This is from a Japanese language manual for the 891(1987-89) punchcard machine, appears to introduce the idea of replacing the use of the knit carriage and plaiting feeder with one specifically designed for intarsia