Tuck Stitch on the Knitmaster 580 Electronic
Today I am trying out a complicated tuck stitch pattern that was illustrated in Machine Knitting News in May 1998 – the heyday of Knitting Machine News. This was a beautiful two-piece knitted with a silk ribbon Yarn and a single strand of silk in the same colour – it was an ivory or natural colour. Years ago I copied the pattern onto a Knitmaster Mylar Sheet and left it there, The problem with this pattern to my mind was the yarn – probably way too expensive for me at that time, and the fact that you had to change the yarn from thick to thin every 2 rows and my patience did not extend to even trying it, however, time flies and I have plenty at the moment and this caught my eye whilst looking for inspiration.
Tuck Stitch Problems on standard gauges
Now all my yarns are industrial – none of that beautiful alpaca or in fact any of that ilk graces this old knitting shed – what I do have is a ton of various industrials that I have either collected or alternatively been given with the machines I have bought – plenty of viscose, linen, Shetland (unfortunately large cones of this are scarce here) and many yarns that I bought in a job ex factory lot – lots of unknown variations. So after a bit I thought of some slippery viscose yarn – very fine stuff but when tripled it did the sample photographed – a single end provided the fine yarn to go with the thick.
Mylar Sheets or download to PE1 via DK8
First thing I did was copy the stitch pattern into DesignaKnit and after the usual hassle, re downloading into my Brother 940 – I proceeded to knit – well what a disaster. With a tuck stitch pattern you have to press the button that reverses the colours – if you are using a punchcard then unfortunately you have to punch the white areas of the punchcard and that isn’t no fun, but this is a seriously beautiful tuck pattern and well worth the effort. This type of tuck on a Passap would be no problem – however the yarn I am using plays up. Eventually, I decided there was no way it was going to knit on my Brother probably because the needles are selected and it either frayed, did not knit the plain stitches in between the tucks – have to admit my Brother 940 is getting old (like myself I suppose) so I took out my oldest and tattiest Knitmaster 580 Electronic (the original design was knitted on a Knitmaster) found the various bits and pieces and decided to set it up.
This is an older version of the above
This machine cost me very little money, it was rescued from a damp shed and came with a huge selection of mylar sheets and books worth so much more than the few euros I paid for it and even better it came with every extra known to man including an SR60 Ribber and a PE! I do have a newer version of this fantastic electronic but it is stored away at present.
I have a DesignaKnit cable for the PEI but as the pattern was already drafted out onto a mylar, well its just as easy – must confess this machine is well under rated for its electronic capabilities – everything is inbuilt – and it knits beautifully like all Knitmaster, ok so they aint pretty now, but they do a great job. Just do a quick comparison to the Silver Reed version of this machine and you will begin to see what a bargain it is.
Tuck Stitch in Viscose
After setting up the machine and the mylar - I did a few hundred rows of just switching the carriage back and forth to ease it off, when you store knitting machines for a a year or more it does no harm to do this – I then set of the mylar sheet ensuring the reverse button was pressed ie button 1 and the cams were set in the correct position – did a quick weaving brush cast on then proceeded with the pattern, Oh how much easier it was to knit this time. Its never going to be a quick pattern because of the change of yarns from thick to thin, and in the case of the difficult yarn I was using, a colour changer would not have worked I am almost sure.
Pattern consul and mylar sheets
The pattern has a number of plain rows in between the tucks and the Mylar sheet had a mark to warn you when you had to do these plain rows with the main yarn. Must be something in my blood, as soon as I see a complex pattern, it’s almost like a challenge – now for someone with the recommended yarns, this would produce a gorgeous suit for a wedding or special occasion. Now then challenge two - now I am off to try and draft in the pattern into DesignaKnit – it’s a knit contour pattern so it should be fun and games.
This is a picture of the tuck stitch on the purl side ie side facing you, and was the side chosen for the jacket pictured above
Tuck Stitch Mylar
If you are drafting out this 24 stitch pattern bear in mind that if its a punchcard you will need to punch the rest of the card and leave the black squares blank.