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Old 09-25-2008, 09:53 AM   #1
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Beginner with Question about needles
I'm just starting out learning to knit and was wondering which type of needles are the best to learn on. The circular or straight? Also are bamboo the best to start with? Thanks in advance for the help in deciding which to buy.
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Old 09-25-2008, 10:42 AM   #2
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I started with metal straights, but that was back when that was about all that was available.

Which ones feel better in your hands? I tend to gravitate toward my bamboo straights for a lot of my smaller projects, and Addi Turbo or bamboo circulars (depends on the yarn - some yarns slide better on different materials) for larger projects. I like my addi turbos with woolyarns , and my bamboos with cotton yarns. Laceweight yarns are slippery suckers, and I go with bamboo in most cases with laceweight yarns (exception was with some merino wool fuzzy laceweight which would not slide nicely on the bamboos).

Also, feel free to switch your needles if the ones you're using aren't working.
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Old 09-25-2008, 11:01 AM   #3
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Start out with KNITPICKS Harmony circular needles. You can purchase the whole set for under $70...or just a needle at a time.

All very reasonably priced IMO. Don't waste a dime on straight needles. Invest in circulars from the get-go. More versatile, easier on your wrists. I wish they had been available when I started knitting!




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Old 09-25-2008, 11:38 AM   #4
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Howdy and welcome,
I also prefer to work with circular needles for their adaptability (flat or round/circular knitting); although, I prefer metal tips to wood. For me the wooden ones tend to grip my stitches to well. I work with wools and or man made fibers (for some charities). I prefer to use sizes from 24" (60 cm) to 32" (80 cm) long.
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vhall (09-25-2008)
Old 09-25-2008, 12:41 PM   #5
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I also prefer circulars but that's because I don't poke people in the eye while knitting in a crowded subway. Also, it depends on what yarn you are knitting with. I prefer the smoothness of metal but once in a while when I use a slippery yarn I prefer bamboo or wood.

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Old 09-25-2008, 12:47 PM   #6
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Best is subjective.

what is best for me, might not be best for you!

there are straight needle, both long and short..
made from:
metal (aluminum, brass, nickel plated, and steel are the most common metals)
woods (birch, ebony rosewood are the most common woods)
plastic (nylon, casean, (a plastic made from milk) hard clear plastic)
Other (glass, mixed, silver, bronze, etc)

Double pointed and circular needles also are available in most of these materials.

some (nickel plated) are smooth and slick, (fast!)
some (bamboo) are smooth and tacky (slow)

some are warm in hand (brass, nickel plated brass, woods, bamboos, and some plastics)

some are cool in hand (aluminum)

some are more flexible, some are more rigid.

some have pointer tips, some rounder tips.

BEST is what is best for you, your yarn and your project.

Best will change --new knitters often like the grippiness of bamboo, (it helps them control stitches and avoid dropping them)
Me, i like the smooth slick feel of nickel plated brass--that allow me to knit fast!
my blog I'm Oftroy on Ravelry
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Old 09-25-2008, 02:17 PM   #7
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I agree with of troy. If possible, go to your LYS and see if they'll let you try diff ndls. As much as I love circs, there are times when I need straights altho I only use slippery metal (but I'm a long-time knitter). Some ppl really dislike circs. Diff yarns sometimes require diff ndl materials. Before investing, and depending on your budget, I'd suggesting trying as many as you can get your hands one.

Keeping to the knitting basics
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Old 09-25-2008, 03:28 PM   #8
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I bought oodles of straight needles in aluminum when I started! UGH! What a recipe for disaster that was! I agree with ArtLady - but a set of Harmony Options from KnitPicks. It's an all-in-one kit; wood needles tend to better for beginners since beginners tend to slip stitches easily; circs are all I'll ever use - they keep the weight off of my wrists and are more comfortable in addition to versatile. Circular needles can be used to knit flat pieces, pieces in the round, or even socks! You get the most bang for your buck!
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Old 09-25-2008, 04:13 PM   #9
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I can knit with anything. Cheap aluminum straights are fine, I don't hate them (like them better than wood needles most of the time). But my Knit Picks circulars rock. I have the nickel plated set, and random Harmonies as well (the cables fit both). They're awesome. I use the nickel plated for some things, the Harmonies for others, just depends on the project. I don't like straights anymore.
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Old 09-27-2008, 06:58 PM   #10
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Knitting Needle Question
Hello. I am new here. Anyone tried Aero/Prym circs? They were recommended to my yesterday at my LYS. Under $6. I am learning to knit via books/vids and this website.
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