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Old 10-30-2015, 10:46 PM   #1
pslane
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circular needle sizes
Hello again,
Since I am about to embark on learning to knit with circulars, I need to know what length to use. My patterns tell me what size which is usually 8 but I see circulars in all different lengths, too. I have s 2 that are 26 in. but I may have some shorter if I need them and can find them.

Remember this is a hat, so that will give you an idea of the project size.

Thanks,
Pauline
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Old 10-30-2015, 11:16 PM   #2
Becky Morgan
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If you're going to work magic loop, the longer the better. However...

For a hat to work in the round, you can't beat a 16" circular. The stitches will crowd just slightly so it's easy to move them around, and you won't have extra cord to deal with. You can get theose in almost any needle size. I make a lot of worsted weight hats, and for me that's a size 8 most of the time, but other people need other sizes to get the same gauge.
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Old 10-30-2015, 11:25 PM   #3
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Thank you, that 16 sound s good to me. But what is meant by the magic loop?
Pauline
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Old 10-31-2015, 12:54 PM   #4
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The only problem with using 16" circular for a hat is you'll need another method to finish the top as out decreases. That's how I learned to use DPN. You could also use two circulars or do magic loop. Rather than fiddle around I just use magic loop for the whole thing.

If you go with magic loop length is kind of personal choice. They always need to be long enough to loop, but some people like them longer than others. For instance some people are happy with a 32" for hats. I much prefer a 40".
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Old 10-31-2015, 10:06 PM   #5
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Whoa, I'm just beginning my first project with circulars so DPN are far in my future. I once got some lessons for a pro who showed me how to use them, but even watching her in person, it just looks so complicated. Isn't there a circular with a very short cable? Would that work?

Well, I've got a cast on with my circulars so wish me luck. Got a good video to watch.
Thanks ~Pauline

BTW, here is the hat I'm trying.
http://knittingwithschnapps.blogspot...side-step.html
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Old 11-01-2015, 01:21 AM   #6
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Okay, I'll try to explain simply.

The shortest cable you can really have with full length needles is about 16". When the cables get shorter you must make the needle shorter. There are a few out there, but they are different to knit with and many people don't like them.

They still wouldn't solve the problem of the top of a hat though. As you decrease and get fewer stitches it starts stretching the fabric and you either need to change methods or knit flat. If you want a hat with the smooth rounded top you will need to use another method to work the top.

Options if you don't want to do that are to either decrease as far as you can and then stop and gather the stitches or just stop and gather the stitches without decreasing. This is actually one method some patterns use rather than decreasing. Knit as far as you want and we can help with the finish when you get there.

Does that help?
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Old 11-01-2015, 09:30 AM   #7
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Thank you, and yes, that helps. Every little piece of advice helps!
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Old 11-01-2015, 02:09 PM   #8
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Here is a screenshot of what I've done so far. Is it okay to have my stitches on the inside like that? Also, I get nervous every time I get to the marker. Exactly what is your procedure when you get there? I've been stitching in the tail and knitting on by. I get a feeling something is wrong and I feel like this is just a test so if it has to come out, I'm okay with that.

Also, I changed patterns to one using a bulky yarn, since I have big hands and always do better with a heavier yarn. It's for a kid but I also have a small head! lol I cast on 8 more stitches than the instructions said.

https://www.plymouthyarn.com/f659

Thank you for helping me.
Pauline
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Old 11-01-2015, 02:22 PM   #9
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For the top of a hat that has decreases, I use two circulars--knit half the row with the one I'm using, pick up another one (often it's a size bigger or smaller, whatever's handy, because at that point it doesn't matter a whole lot) and knit the other half with that. No matter what, the last few rounds are kind of fiddly.
Double points can be annoying at first, depending on your yarn. Aluminum double points are Not For Beginners. I still don't like to use them. Bamboo has been much nicer for me. It's possible, though you will get funny looks, to use one circular and one double point once the round is too short for the circ. It's one of those things that would be way quicker to show than explain.
Of course, you can just use all top-down hat patterns :D (No, that doesn't work. You still have to start with a few stitches and work up unless you do the drawstring bit.)
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Old 11-01-2015, 02:46 PM   #10
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Looks good. Are you knitting all the stitches instead of K1, P1 rib or am I just not seeing the purl sts?
Just slip the marker as if it were a slip stitch. You can weave in the tail as you go along or just leave it and weave it in at the end.
If you want to knit on the outside of the needles, you can just flip the hat and work along the outside. Some people prefer to work on the inside until they get to the crown shaping. There's nothing wrong with working that way.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IaMKWitcvU8

This hat nicely avoids the crown shaping and just ends with the 3-needle bind off across the top. Cute pattern.
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