Monday, July 1

Comparing a CSM to a flatbed knitting machine

Not many folks are lucky enough to have seen a CSM in action so I thought I'd post a comparison.

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My CSM (an Imperia), with ribber in work. And you thought the visibility with the flat bed ribber in use was bad!!

Flatbed knitting
machine
Circular Sock Machine
Maximum width of
knitting
Maximum amount of needles (x 2 if ribber attached)

ie standard machine can knit tube or flat piece on 400 needles
Limited by maximum number of needles in cylinder ie 54,
60, 72, 84
Needle positions
(main bed)
A = non-working

B = normal working

C/D = upper working (patterning) position

D/E = hold/partial knitting
Out of work = non-knitting (needle is removed from
cylinder/ribber)

Normal working

Hold/partial knitting
Needle positions
(ribber bed)
A = non-working

B = normal working

C/D = upper working (patterning) position

D/E = hold/partial knitting
Out of work = non-knitting (needle is removed from
cylinder/ribber)

Normal working

Slip (whole ribber is slipped, used for circular selvedge)
Pitch of ribber v
main bed
Half or Pitch Adjustable angle via side lever
Needle retention
method
Sponge bar (main bed)

Sponge bar or plastic bar (ribber bed).

Impossible to knit without needle retainer bar in good condition - needles rise (leaf spring inside bed) and jam in carriages
Clasp spring or clamp (cylinder)

No retainer (ribber) - weight of knitting keeps ribber needles in
position.

Possible to knit without clasp spring in place
Cast on methods Various methods - e-wrap, latch tool, weaving, slip,
cast on comb or rag
Cast on via setting up tool (set up basket), e-wrap,
cast on bonnet
Cast-off methods Various methods - latch tool, behind or in front of
gatepegs, sewn bind off
Usually stripped from machine on waste yarn and grafted
or casted off by hand. Sewn cast off might possibly work?
Transfer method
between beds
Double-eyed transfer tool or mechanised transfer tool Hook-to-hook transfer (one needle added as one is
removed)
Patterning Pushbutton, punched card or electronic patterning Completely manual
Tension (stitch size) 0 - 10 in gradations of 0.33 (Japanese) or 0.25
(Swiss).
Tension "clicks" into place
1-5 on both cylinder and ribber plate (depends on
manufacturer). Tension entirely variable (no "clicks")
Row counter 3 digit mechanical counter Dial counter (can buy magnetic revolution counter)
Yarn take-up tension Overhead tension mast with spring-loaded take up Passive overhead mast, heel spring used when partial
knitting only
Weighting system Cast on combs, claw weights, ribber combs, ribber
weights. Can purchase magnetic "Woolley weights"
Large hooked carrier with cast iron weights, attached
via heel fork, set up basket or buckle
Unpicking Can be unpicked easily, stitch by stitch by using a zig-zag
motion
Requires hooked tools to rehang previous row; often
quicker to start again
Latches Magnets and brushes open the latches - except for intarsia, latches can be left as is Latches must be open for knitting to happen, no magnets or brushes. A closed latch = a dropped stitch

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