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Old 11-16-2006, 02:15 PM   #3
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It's hard to say because everybody has their personal preference, and a lot of people vary the type of needle they use with the type of yarn they are using. I think usually metal is the slickest of them all, which makes for fast knitting but also can increase your chances for dropped stitches or stitches sliding off when you set down your project. Even among metal there are variations of slickness, like aluminum versus plated brass like the Knitpicks Options or Addi Turbos.

Bamboo is less slick that metal, so if you are working with a tricky, slick yarn, that can help. A lot of people prefer bamboo DPNs for socks for this reason, the needle won't go flying out of the stitches like metal ones have the potential to do. Even among brands of needles of the same material there can be a difference, such as Clover bamboo versus Crystal Palace bamboo.

Birch or other wood ones are another possibility. Or the resin like the Denise set. Not quite plastic, I think smoother, but I haven't used them personally, so I can't vouch for them.

The pointiness of the tips is another factor too, some yarns work better with tips that are a bit more blunt, some work better with sharper points. The Options are especially known for their pointy tips.

If stores were smart, they would let you "try before you buy," so you can determine which needle feels the best for the yarn you will use. You're not expected to purchase a car without taking it for a spin first! LOL
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