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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
OK here I go again, gonna try circ's once more. The pattern is for arm warmers, casting on 41 sts, worsted weight yarn. Pattern suggests 5 or 6 mm needles, but what length should I use?
I have a few circs that were my Mom's but they're all too long. Since I'm not sure I'm going to love this experience I will go to Walmart and buy a cheapy pair..but how long? :sm07:
 

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Having a pair of circular needles where the cable coils and twists is sure to make working with them more frustrating. To know what length of cable needle you need the smallest circle you can make is the length of the circulars. For example the smallest circle you can knit with a 16 inch needle is 16 inches. (actually 14 or 15 for ease) I use the two circular method to make smaller circles. Others use magic loop or traveling loop. Good luck, you can do this.
 

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taiyaki said:
OK here I go again, gonna try circ's once more. The pattern is for arm warmers, casting on 41 sts, worsted weight yarn. Pattern suggests 5 or 6 mm needles, but what length should I use?
I have a few circs that were my Mom's but they're all too long. Since I'm not sure I'm going to love this experience I will go to Walmart and buy a cheapy pair..but how long? :sm07:
This chart might help. Good luck.
 

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I use circular needles only...my favorite length is 24"...and I think that length would work well for you if you plan to knit your arm warmers flat..but on a circular needle....If you are planning to knit them in the round that length is too long...but I have another concern about what you are planning to do...buy cheap ones..because the cord needs to be very good and not twisty to have a good experience with a circular needle. If you have a yarn store near I would consider buying the size needle tip you need and a cord (yes, you can buy them separately and not invest in a whole kit of, say, chiaogoo needles) and not spend much more than on a cheap pair....and the knitting experience will likely be MUCH better! Whatever you decide take it slow and give them a chance! Good luck!
julie
 

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I agree with Julie, buy bits and pieces of good needles. Also ask in the store if you can try short vs standard tips. Depending on the size of your hands tip size can be really important. For me, the short points hit right in the center of my palms and were very uncomfortable, but when I moved to the 5 " tips they were great. I do know folks who swear by the smaller tips, especially those who work with little items like socks or hats. When it comes to circs you have lots of different options to make what's perfect for you.
 

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I'm making a pair now and using Chiaogoo 9" fixed circulars that I bought at Handsome Fibers (free shipping ). The cord spins and are flexible.
 

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You'll probably get along okay with an inexpensive set of double point needles, but trying magic loop on cheap circulars, with the weird bend in the needle tips, and an inflexible cord, won't be fun. For so few stitches, you need to use double points, magic loop, or those super short and hard to find, and, in my opinion, hard to use, 9"-12" circulars.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
fergablu2 said:
You'll probably get along okay with an inexpensive set of double point needles, but trying magic loop on cheap circulars, with the weird bend in the needle tips, and an inflexible cord, won't be fun. For so few stitches, you need to use double points, magic loop, or those super short and hard to find, and, in my opinion, hard to use, 9"-12" circulars.
among Mom's thins I just found a pair of 16" size 7 circs. They do have that funny bend where the needle merges into the "cord" They're made by Boye. I think I'll give these a shot before I go totally bonkers and try the "magic loop" Looks like it needs lotsa practice, and I'm just now trying circs for the umpteenth time. You might have read one of my other posts, I am a left needle "tucker" who keeps the left needle stationary and/ or I use a knitting sheath, and I knit continental combined.........to me knitting with circs is like knitting in mid-air!! So Thanks for your suggestions so far. I'll probably be back within a couple of hours begging for emotion support!! :sm01:
 

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silversurfer said:
Personally for so few sts I prefer dpns. You can use the magic loop system with circs which are too long but I find that tedious, boring, time consuming and it stretches the stitches.
How does it stretch the stitches? I have never had it stretch stitches and I use that method all the time.
 

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The length of your circular needs to be less than the diameter of what you are knitting or you will stretch the stitches. Thus for arm warmers the only circulars likely to be small enough are the 9 or 12 inch ones.
But all is not lost as magic loop or 2 circulars both work.
As others have said you need good cords for magic loop, cheaper ones work better for 2 circulars as the flexibility of the cord is not as important. But cheaper ones also often have poor joins and smooth joins are needed to allow the stitches to slide over the joins. There are a few cheap ones that work but no idea what you have over there in this category.
And of course also as an option are DPNs.

My personal favourite is magic loop. Has the advantage as well that the one lot of needles can be used for all knitting both flat and in the round for any number of stitches.
But each of us has our own personal favourite and no one method is better than the other.
 

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I like all of them. Magic loop, two circulars, DPNs. Sometimes I just feel like using one over the other and sometimes the pattern needs one or the other. Being a "bi-needler" gives me tons of flexibility. That said, I agree with the others, cheap circs are a nightmare and for leg warmers 16" will be too long. I also don't think I'd try the 9 or 12" to begin with.
 

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taiyaki said:
among Mom's thins I just found a pair of 16" size 7 circs. They do have that funny bend where the needle merges into the "cord" They're made by Boye. I think I'll give these a shot before I go totally bonkers and try the "magic loop" Looks like it needs lotsa practice, and I'm just now trying circs for the umpteenth time. You might have read one of my other posts, I am a left needle "tucker" who keeps the left needle stationary and/ or I use a knitting sheath, and I knit continental combined.........to me knitting with circs is like knitting in mid-air!! So Thanks for your suggestions so far. I'll probably be back within a couple of hours begging for emotion support!! :sm01:
I am a right needle "tucker" and also find circs quite frustrating to work with because they slow me down so much. However, I just knit a shawl that needed circulars and I seem to be managing a little better with holding the right needle in a certain position so that I can "flick" the yarn (I'm an English knitter, have never mastered continental). I'm about to start on a large circular baby shawl (a MaybeBaby design) that I'm planning on entering in the county fair at this time next year. I'm determined to persist with it as it's so lovely.
 

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If you are a "tucker" you might find it easiest to use long (10") double points, assuming 10" is long enough to tuck or use with a knitting belt. I don't use that method, so I don't how how long your needles need to be. Also don't know if dps come longer than 10".
 

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I would probably buy an set of 16's for 41 stitches and knit those warmers in the round. Yes I said no purling at all. Mine I bought to do the sleeves on Joe's sweater are Chiagoo's and although they are not walmart they aren't real expensive. I have found that the cheap Susan Bates needles at my walmart feel tinny and I don't like knitting with them as well as I do my Chiagoo's or Addi's or Kollage.
 

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Short circulars are available as in 9" however, when using something this small make sure you use an asymmetric circular. This is where one needle is shorter than the other making knitting easier in the round on such short needles. So far I think the only brands that offer this are the KA Classic bamboo and the Addi EasyKnit. Otherwise, as others have suggested try magic loop, double point or two circulars. OR add two extra stitches to the pattern for the seam and work flat.
 
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