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View Full Version : am i the only one who doesnt like wooden needles?


tarrentella
05-22-2008, 01:23 PM
I have only tried bamboo needles a couple of times, but just didn't like them. I found them difficult to use and that my knitting was overly tight on them. It also felt like the yarn was snagging or that there was friction between the yarn and needles.

Is it just me? I hear so many of you raving about them, or recomending wooden needles but, I just can't share your enthusiasm!

MerigoldinWA
05-22-2008, 01:39 PM
Well, I doubt that all bamboo needles are created equal. I know they aren't. I got a super cheat pair at Wal-Mart that were terrible (they were circulars and it was mostly where the bamboo joined the cord that the problem was). My DH even made me some out of bamboo chopstitcks. They were actually pretty good, have very sharp points, but he had issues with the bamboo wanting to get splitty at tips and catch on things. Some were better than others. I suppose the same would be true of wooden needles too.

But everybody has different tastes in needles and even different ones for different yarns and types of knitting. I think some people like the bamboo because of the friction between yarn and needle that you mentioned. I don't suppose that makes everyone knit too tightly. Snagging I don't think anyone would be enamored with.

I can take bamboo needles or leave them, the ones we have are a little blunt for my taste, but they are my husband's favorite needles. So, to each his own.

suzeeq
05-22-2008, 02:11 PM
Wood needles are fine for some yarns, not so good with others. I have a few and just use them as I would the metal ones. They're just another needle to me, neither better nor worse than the others.

Ronda
05-22-2008, 02:21 PM
I don't like wooden needles at all. I haven't tried the Harmony needles though, and they might be an exception. I also haven't tried Lantern Moon needles, but I would like to. I've used bamboo, and the yarn just doesn't slide easily enough for me. Plus, and I know this will sound weird, they make my teeth hurt. It's the same sensation you get when you bite on foil...I think of or feel the wooden needles and my teeth hurt. I know. That's strange.

tarrentella
05-22-2008, 02:29 PM
I don't like wooden needles at all. I haven't tried the Harmony needles though, and they might be an exception. I also haven't tried Lantern Moon needles, but I would like to. I've used bamboo, and the yarn just doesn't slide easily enough for me. Plus, and I know this will sound weird, they make my teeth hurt. It's the same sensation you get when you bite on foil...I think of or feel the wooden needles and my teeth hurt. I know. That's strange.

you know i get that feeling too. i just didnt know how to describe it!

Ronda
05-22-2008, 02:42 PM
you know i get that feeling too. i just didnt know how to describe it!

:roflhard: I'm not the only one!

MMario
05-22-2008, 02:47 PM
so far I haven't met a wooden needle I liked. This could change.

cristina61
05-22-2008, 03:18 PM
I have to agree that all wooden needles are not alike; some are certainly better quality than others. I've used the Takumi brand bamboo and was happy with them, but I can't compare because I haven't use anything else. And since I bought my KP Options I use those for almost everything.

I also have to agree that bamboo needles are better with some types of yarn than others. If you're knitting with a thick wool, I think bamboo could be problematic; but if you're using a yarn that's slippery and fine, bamboo might be a better choice than nickel-plated needles. I know that the bamboo needles tend to be more blunt than metal needles (especially Options), so that's another factor to consider.

I was thrilled to have my bamboo circs, though, when I flew from California to Dallas-Ft. Worth last December! I was able to take them in my carry-on (with the knitting in progress) and no one said a word or even seemed to notice. I'm pretty sure metal needles would have been a problem in going through airport security. So, there's a time and place for everything. :teehee:

However -- if you absolutely can't stand to use bamboo or wooden needles, that's fine! Don't worry about it, just use what you enjoy. After all, knitting's supposed to be fun! :happydance:

Indygirl
05-22-2008, 03:32 PM
Here's my take on this subject. I have tried a lot of different wood needles. I used dp wood needles when decreasing a hat. I tried circular wood needles. I felt the same way you all do. Now for the good news! The Harmony wood from Knit Picks is a very different story. I have the set of Harmony sock dp wood needles, I have the Harmony wood interchangeable set as well. I also have some of the harmony wood circular 24 in' for doing socks on two circular.I LOVE THEM! They feel just like the nickel plated. The yarn moves so smooth and nice on these needles. They are wonderful to work with.:thumbsup:

SBG
05-22-2008, 03:38 PM
Maybe someday I'll try the Harmony ones. So far I haven't liked wood needles at all. I love the Options though!

Plantgoddess+
05-22-2008, 03:44 PM
I've only tried one bamboo needle in a size 13 for an afghan and it was ok. I bought the Harmony circulars and I love them for wool. I don't think I would like them as well for cotton or any other yarn that doesn't slide well, but for wool and an acrylic boucle yarn I worked with I love them.
I can see using different needles with different yarns as I don't knit tightly and having an eclectic collection of circulars I have found the ones I really hate are plastic.

Karina
05-22-2008, 03:47 PM
I have never liked wooden needles or bamboo until I bought just one pair of Harmony interchangeable needles. I will definitely buy more of these. they are lovely and smooth and very pretty to look at.

GiddyKnitter
05-22-2008, 03:53 PM
Harmony Knitpicks are gorgeous so smooth and lovely to look at I use mine all the time now x

heatherg23
05-22-2008, 05:26 PM
I hear they don't move well with the yarn so I don't want to spend any money on them.

Cynamar
05-22-2008, 07:44 PM
I haven't tried wooden needles yet but I want some because they are so pretty. I know that I don't like aluminum for cotton or acrylic!!!

Knitting_Guy
05-22-2008, 08:02 PM
I've never tried wood needles but am quite fond of eating with chopsticks so would probably like them. :mrgreen:

ArtLady1981
05-22-2008, 09:14 PM
I do not like Clover bamboo needles, however, they are useful when teaching newbies to knit. And, you can loan them out without sleepless nights.

I like Crystal Palace bamboo needles. (they are bamboo, aren't they?:??)

I like Lantern Moon Rosewood needles better than Crystal Palace, for a non-metal alternative.

However, KnitPick's HARMONY needles beat them all, hands down.

I am using Harmony's for my Malabrigo mid-calf hooded coat right now. They perform much better with Malabrigo. Give a better gauge, more consistent. Easier to maintain the stitches just right.

Knit4Fun
05-22-2008, 09:48 PM
I've never tried wood needles but am quite fond of eating with chopsticks so would probably like them. :mrgreen:

Hee hee...good one, Mason.

I don't mind wooden needles - it makes me feel connected to the women (and men perhaps) of yesteryear who didn't have fancy metal, plastic or glass options to choose from. That being said, I agree that quality does matter and that it is harder to move them sometimes with the yarn, especially if said yarn is cotton or splitty.

Of course, I may recant this statement as I know DH ordered the Harmony set for my birthday - I am so excited that it is pathetic! :teehee:

GirlChris
05-22-2008, 10:49 PM
I do not like the feel of the wooden needles I have tried. Plus I have to say I get a sense of calm from the clickity clack of the metal ones.

geekgirl
05-23-2008, 02:28 AM
I am a neophyte-knitter, so I have only tried a few types. I really am liking the size 7 bamboo circular needles I got (runs off to check the brand). Ah they are Clover. I did get one splinter from them, and found I liked the tips better after I'd used them more than once right after putting lotion on my hands (I do a lot of handwashing at work, so much the dryness catches on fine yarns.) I also have a Skacel brand pair in 13 for my next scarf project, but haven't used them yet.

I was reading Zimmermann's Kitting w/Out Tears - she mentions oiling wooden needles, or that they seem to get conditioned from oily wools. I wonder if a little moisture helps the bamboo out?

WandaT
05-23-2008, 07:33 AM
I agree that all wooden needles are not created equally. When I first started knitting I loved the Clovers ... now I hate them. When I first started, I liked the "drag" b/c it helped me keep my stitches from slipping off. Now that I have more experience, it slows me down. I also don't like the blunt tips of the Clovers. I have a set of Lantern Moon straights that are much more luxurious and easy to knit with. HOWEVER, ... like many others, m absolute faves are my Harmonies!!!

rachejm
05-23-2008, 08:34 AM
I loved my wooden needles when I was learning because the stitches didn't slip off them but i can't use them now. After a while my guage got more even and tighter so I find the wooden ones hard to use, the knitting just flows easier with metal ones for me. One day I will be able to afford a set of harmonies and then I may change my mind, but for now I'll stick with the aluminium.

gailf
05-23-2008, 12:15 PM
right now I'm on love with the bryspun needles not they arent as pretty as some of the others

knitasha
05-23-2008, 02:30 PM
Wood and bamboo needles are not the same.
Wooden needles are usually from deciduous trees such as cherry, walnut, birch and rosewood. Bamboo is a kind of woody grass.

Wooden needles can be gorgeous and expensive, especially the handmade ones. In larger sizes, they can also be very heavy, which is why I generally dislike them for worsted and heavier yarns. And I don't buy them in smaller sizes either because at small diameters they can be fragile. (I have a bad habit of sitting on my needles. Snap!) To my hands they feel inflexible, but there are people who swear that they are smoothest, warmest, most comfortable needles to knit with.

The KnitPick Harmony needles are birch that has been laminated (they don't say with what, but I would suspect a resin or plastic) so they are stronger and smoother. I like them in the smaller sizes for socks, where the stitches can slide too easily off metal needles.

Bamboo seems more flexible to me -- easy on the hands. It can also be dirt cheap, which is great for people who lose and break needles. I find them annoyingly grippy for wool, though.

All said, I still prefer my slick, fast-as-lightning metal Addis for most knitting, and my resin/plastic Denises for slippery ribbon-type yarn.

Jan in CA
05-23-2008, 04:04 PM
I prefer metal (Options), but bamboo DPNs are okay.

dreamsherl
05-24-2008, 10:26 AM
I love my wooden needles. I use them as much as possible. I use Lantern Moons because they slide wonderfully. I also use metal Addi's and wooden Addi's. I know that these needles are higher in price but they are worth the money to me.

Crycket
05-24-2008, 11:53 AM
I am hit and miss with needles in general. I love my bamboo set of straights, and I love my nickleplated DPNS from KP. I love my Denise set (which is what? Nylon?)

I have always alway always had a problem with Boye needles. After a while the pretty colours on the tips wears away, and they start creating a horrible metal....I don't know...nails on a chalk board type sound a feel. I will not buy boye for any reason anymore!

redheadrachel
05-24-2008, 12:18 PM
I dislike wooden needles fairly intensely. I do understand that it has a certain aesthetic appeal, but I get irritated with them so it's not even enjoyable. I say knit with what you like, and I like KP nickel plated. For people who like wooden needles, I say good for them - it just means that more slick and pointy needles are left for me :woot:

chesagrey
05-24-2008, 06:55 PM
i adore bamboo needles and would prefer never to use metal ones if i didn't need to once in a while. my LYSO doesn't allow metal needles in her shop!!

WildMountainHoney
05-27-2008, 03:48 PM
my LYSO doesn't allow metal needles in her shop!! So nothing smaller than a size 2 or so ever enters her store? Does she not sell sock yarns (I'm a loose knitter, I need 0s for socks, and I don't see many in wood, most all are metal). :?? Unless there are some very small wood needles (which I would love to hear about, I don't like "cold" metal needles much) but it seems so odd to place such a limitation.

suecq
05-27-2008, 04:01 PM
Knit Picks Harmony needles (both DP and Circular) come in sizes down to 0 and are very strong. I have knit socks with the 0 DP needles and they did not even bend.

mathwizard
05-27-2008, 04:11 PM
I hate wooden needles. I don't like the way the yarn doesn't slide off easily as metal. I have grown especially fond of Addi's even though I have a complete set of Boyle's. Metal is best for me! Even all my crochet hooks are metal!:yay:

Cynamar
05-27-2008, 04:30 PM
I bought these bamboo circulars http://www.chiaogoo.com/8.html to donate with the Beach Party blanket and got a pair that I'm using for the chemo cap I'm making. Does anyone have an opinion on them? I like them real well so far. The cable isn't as great as Options but much better than Boyle.

Crycket
05-28-2008, 12:11 AM
So nothing smaller than a size 2 or so ever enters her store? Does she not sell sock yarns (I'm a loose knitter, I need 0s for socks, and I don't see many in wood, most all are metal). :?? Unless there are some very small wood needles (which I would love to hear about, I don't like "cold" metal needles much) but it seems so odd to place such a limitation.

Hee hee...yeah...you just have to sandpaper your own toothpicks....that would work....*sarcastic grins*

panchita
05-28-2008, 12:28 AM
I bought these bamboo circulars http://www.chiaogoo.com/8.html to donate with the Beach Party blanket and got a pair that I'm using for the chemo cap I'm making. Does anyone have an opinion on them? I like them real well so far. The cable isn't as great as Options but much better than Boyle.

I've used the ChiaGoo bamboo circs size 13 for several turkish stitch string bags. They're fine... the cord doesn't have "memory" like some other cheaper circs. I did get snagging at the join of cord to needle.

I do enjoy wood and bamboo needles because they're warmer. I have a plethora of needles--mostly straights--in metals, plastic, bamboo, nylon, and just two in wood (they're painted and very cute). All work fine for me. I prefer straights or dpns to circulars whenever I can because I HATE the snaggy, draggy, slow-me-down joins.

Cynamar
05-28-2008, 01:49 PM
The ChiaGoos do turn at the join, which I thought was cool.

Shandeh
05-31-2008, 12:54 AM
I'm a tight knitter, so wooden needles never work for me. The yarn just STICKS and will not move without much effort on my part. I have arthritis, so this makes my knitting experience unbearable. I use metal needles all the time.

I occasionally use plastic needles. Some plastic is better than others. I've found that vintage plastic needles are smoother than the newer ones. I really like the vintage white plastic needles called "Luxite" (Whisper Smooth) that were made by Susan Bates. I search for them on eBay all the time, because they are my absolute favorite.

suzeeq
05-31-2008, 09:07 AM
I never thought of looking on ebay for more of the Susan Bates nylon needles that were available in the 70s. I have a few that I really like, but they're in the really large sizes. My 10 got chewed by a cat long ago, and it's still in one piece, but has some splinters. I tried putting plumbing tape over the rough spots, but it wears off.

Shandeh
05-31-2008, 02:52 PM
I found a couple on eBay yesterday, but they are in a big lot of needles. As much as I want them, I don't need any more "lots" of straight needles. :teehee:
http://cgi.ebay.com/Huge-lot-of-vintage-KNITTING-NEEDLES-Many-Sizes-Colors_W0QQitemZ390000012413QQihZ026QQcategoryZ712 17QQssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem

http://cgi.ebay.com/8-Straight-Knitting-Needle-sets-Accessories_W0QQitemZ280230711769QQihZ018QQcategor yZ11799QQssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem

http://cgi.ebay.com/Knitting-Circular-KNITTING-NEEDLES-Bates-Boye-Lot_W0QQitemZ200227664208QQihZ010QQcategoryZ71216Q QssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem

suzeeq
05-31-2008, 06:31 PM
Thanks for the links, I only use circs though. I went looking for some earlier, but found them mostly in sizes I don't use much. I probably have enough needles anyway....

panchita
06-02-2008, 10:12 AM
[quote=Shandeh;1113930]I found a couple on eBay yesterday, but they are in a big lot of needles. As much as I want them, I don't need any more "lots" of straight needles. :teehee:


Why don't sellers on eBay just offer one size at a time of their needles (vintage or otherwise). It's very irritating and expensive to buy huge lots of needles when you really only need one size. Grr.

Arielluria
06-02-2008, 10:16 AM
I have only tried bamboo needles a couple of times, but just didn't like them. I found them difficult to use and that my knitting was overly tight on them. It also felt like the yarn was snagging or that there was friction between the yarn and needles.

Is it just me? I hear so many of you raving about them, or recomending wooden needles but, I just can't share your enthusiasm!I'd say I PREFER the metal ones. The only time I might appreciate the bamboo ones more is on very slippery yarn, and especially if DPNs, because the slicker yarn tends not to fall off the wooden needles so much.

miss_molly
06-02-2008, 10:35 AM
I'm another one who doesn't like bamboo needles. I have a baby blanket on bamboo circulars at the moment, and I've put it aside because it is so slow. The yarn doesn't glide along the needles, every stitch is laborious, and I'm just hating the whole tedious business of it.

Nor do I particularly like metal. Too unyielding and too easy to have them fall out of the stitches.

My very most favourite is tortoiseshell. I have several pairs handed down from my grandmother and some from an op shop. They feel perfect, and my knitting glides along them. I also like some plastic needles. I have a certain pair (they look to have something inside them - I can see the shadow through them) which perform almost as well as tortoiseshell.

Oh, and I absolutely hate circulars.

suzeeq
06-02-2008, 11:21 AM
It depends on your yarn, if it's cotton or another sticky yarn, that doesn't work so well with bamboo. Slick yarns need the grab of wooden needles. So you really can't use just one type of needle, you need a variety of them.

Shandeh
06-02-2008, 10:07 PM
Very true, suzeeq. :wink:
Why don't sellers on eBay just offer one size at a time of their needles (vintage or otherwise). It's very irritating and expensive to buy huge lots of needles when you really only need one size. Grr.
It's because they don't want to pay a seller fee on each needle. Their seller fee is cheaper if they list everything together in one auction.

knovice
06-02-2008, 10:36 PM
Another voice against bamboo needles. I also find them snaggy and slow. But other wooden needles can be quite nice. I'm a fan of Lantern Moon straights and a Harmony interchangeables.

Rorshach
06-03-2008, 01:51 AM
I dislike wood needles for a purely practical reason, and that is my hands sweat a lot while I'm knitting. it makes my wooden needles hard to work with regardless of the type of yarn I'm using.

Firey Vixxen
06-04-2008, 10:54 PM
I've always prefered metal needles, and when I first saw Bamboo needles I was very skeptical. My mom uses bamboo stakes for gardening and they are very splity, so I could just see long splinters coming off, and the needles disintergrating, and having to pick wood out of my project, and the yarn catching and tearing on the splinters. Yuck.
But then I needed a pair of circs for a loooong project, and the choice was spend more on a pair of plastic (I hate Plastic) circs or spend less and try bamboo. I bought the bamboo and was pleasantly surprised. they appear to have a very thin coating of a reisin to stop splinters and they move fine. And the cord is attached well! While I still prefer metal, these are a BIG improvment over plastic.
My very most favourite is tortoiseshell. I have several pairs handed down from my grandmother and some from an op shop. They feel perfect, and my knitting glides along them. I also like some plastic needles. I have a certain pair (they look to have something inside them - I can see the shadow through them) which perform almost as well as tortoiseshell.

Oh, and I absolutely hate circulars.

I thought I was the only one! While I don't "I will never knit a circular project" hate them, I much prefer my straights (Or even DPNs)
and lucky you for having Tortoiseshell. very pretty. I want a set of ebony needles, just because I like the look of ebony.
FV

kateycp2k
06-05-2008, 01:09 PM
I have only tried bamboo needles a couple of times, but just didn't like them. I found them difficult to use and that my knitting was overly tight on them. It also felt like the yarn was snagging or that there was friction between the yarn and needles.

Is it just me? I hear so many of you raving about them, or recomending wooden needles but, I just can't share your enthusiasm!
Although the how-to-knit books I checked out of the library recommended wood needles for beginners, I did not like them - the stitches would not move across the needle easily.
Right now I am using Boye needles, which I think are great for beginners. I also have some Susan Bates needles which are a little heavier, but a great improvement over the bamboo ones.