Reviewed, with added information 12/2022
The most recent Gimp Update
There is a Russian online site offering a huge range of punch card designs. The question of 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 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 offers larger previews
The options in English for working with published cardsThe help menu is available after the card is chosen Designs are presented on 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, and fared much better in the original language publication.
In the 2022 adaptation, the small previews were chosen for conversion to pngs rather than the full card templates used below.
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 the 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 shows how the pattern will appear when used to program fair isle. Screengrab the final image surrounded by extra white cells, and open it in GIMP. Change the mode to indexed BW, crop the file to content thus excluding any extra white cells, and scale to the original design’s 24 by 74 dimensions. Punched holes are now pixels; export the knit-ready BMP.
Using the filter, map, and tile option allow 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 with carriages that transfer only
lace and fine lace combinations
tuck stitch combined with transfer lace
tuck/ pull up lace
transfer lace combined with weaving
punch tuck rib
drive/drop stitch lace
If one explores the second selection for 24 stitch cards looking for openwork patterns for 24 stitch cards, the resulting 20 pages of repeats do not differentiate between the lace categories, so the onus is on the visitor to determine proper repeat 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, and 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 an aspect ratio that 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” Screengrab or save pdf, depending on needs.
2022: This process appears complicated, but with some familiarity with both Numbers and Gimp, can be fairly quick. Revisiting the site, I made the accidental discovery that working with images as shown below, by superimposing a Numbers grid to these point measurements, the process became quicker and easier to manage Two instances: from any black and white chart and a seasonal 24X120 repeat from this website. A very quick first view of pattern 8099, ready to be processed The technique steps reviewed as applied to pattern # 403 as seen in this scan Open the image in Gimp, and crop to the outer edges of the selected punchcard. Eliminate unnecessary information by using the select tool and bucket filling each area including non-repeat information with white. Adding a visible pixel line along one of the edges of this image will help locate handles for adjusting its size on the white spreadsheet ground. Save the result. In Numbers, at 100% magnification, create a new table, 24 cells in width by 48 rows in height. Using a thicker cell border in a contrasting color is useful, here the border style is set to 3 points. Drag and drop the image onto the spreadsheet, dragging any one of its handles, viewed as white squares along its edges to a larger size than the table, then use Image Arrange and uncheck constrain proportions. Select the whole table, and drag and position it in front of the image. Using the image handles adjust its size and place it for easy tracing.
Using size and position in the Arrange menu will help with fine-tuning. Fill in the cells above the white squares visible beneath with any color that will facilitate keeping track of the marks. Move the table away from the image at the end of the process. Visually check for any obvious errors in the overall repeat.
Scaling while retaining the odd number value resulted in patterning errors. The problem was solved by resizing the table cells to even numbers, 14X14 points. Remove all cell borders, and set the zoom at 50%. Screengrab the result with a white border around it.
Open the grab in Gimp.
Use the Image and Crop to content option. Set Fuzzy select to select by color click on the contrast color, and pixels will be surrounded by broken lines select bucket fill to black, click on rectangle select, and then anywhere in the window to fix the result, the dotted lines will disappear Follow with these steps
Image Mode menu, convert from RGB to BW Indexed Colors Menu, and choose Invert. Image Scale to 24X48 Magnify X800, Show Grid, and check for any errors.
Save the file.
Filter, Map Tile for the repeat alignment check. The resulting, proofed repeat, 24X48 The top row of images summarizes the steps using Numbers, and the bottom row the results using Gimp
See punchcard templates for more information on associated settings, including downloadable spreadsheets.
Using the setting for centimeter rulers, a partial segment of the above table’s repeat was printed. The result is shown ready for tracing over an improvised light box The pertinent settings: The squares on the card with black cells beneath them may be marked with any tool. For the result to be knit in the tuck stitch setting, users would need to punch all unmarked squares. If only the marked squares are punched, the pattern card could instead be used for thread lace in machine models with that capability.