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Old 04-03-2010, 11:39 AM   #1
kmaclean
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Help with Circular Cable Lengths
I'm relatively new to knitting in the round, so I thought I'd seek some advice from you more experienced knitters!

The hat pattern that I am wanting to try calls for a size US 6 circular needle with a 16" cable. I have an interchangeable circular needle set, but the shortest cable length I have is 24".

My question is, how will using a 24" cable affect the outcome of the project? Will it be fine to use the longer cable, or will it really be easier using the 16" cable that the pattern calls for?

Really, I'm just being cheap ... I already have to buy a set of DPN's in the right size, so I'm just trying to avoid having to buy another circular needle as well if I can.

Any advice would be appreciated!
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Old 04-03-2010, 11:49 AM   #2
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Quote:
My question is, how will using a 24" cable affect the outcome of the project? Will it be fine to use the longer cable, or will it really be easier using the 16" cable that the pattern calls for?
You need to use the size needle your stitches will fit on.
Normally a hat will call for a 16" circ or smaller.

On the flip side.....
You can use a REALLY long cable and your tips and use the "magic loop" method. Heres a video. (scroll down just a bit)

Hope this explains things for ya!!

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Old 04-03-2010, 12:15 PM   #3
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Thanks for the insight!

I guess I'm just having trouble visualizing why my stitches wouldn't "fit" on a 24" cable if they fit on the shorter 16" cable. Maybe I'll have to just experiment a little first with some leftover yarn so that I can actually see what the problem is ... I've always been a visual learner!
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Old 04-03-2010, 12:49 PM   #4
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Think about the circumferance of the hat...
An adult hat will run you somewheres between 22" and 24". Your stitches may "fit" on the 24" but even if you stretched the knitting out as far as it will go, you wont have enough inches in stitches to actually work the thing.

So if you dont have enough stitches to go around the needle comfortably, you should go with a shorter needle.

Does that help a little more?
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Old 04-03-2010, 12:53 PM   #5
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Thank you! That certainly does make sense when you think about it that way ... looks like I'm investing in some shorter needles!
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Old 04-03-2010, 01:07 PM   #6
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If you are wanting to just buy one set of needles, You can do the entire hat on DPN's.

Ive done many hats that way...but I prefer using a circular...and then using dpn's at the shaping. much faster in my opinon, and smoother. But it can certainly be done on DPN's..
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Old 04-03-2010, 01:40 PM   #7
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I usually use a 16 in circular and then switch to DPNs or two circs for the top of the hat. You can do ML with one longer needle if you like that method, too. I prefer two circs myself.
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Old 04-03-2010, 02:27 PM   #8
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You don't need a 16", you can use the 24" needle with the single loop version of magic loop. I use it for hats all the time. If you inc sts after the cuff, you won't need to loop it again until you do the decs as the sts should fit around it.
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