My pattern calls for circular needles but doesn”t tell me what length. How do I figure out what to buy? The pattern calls for a 29″ needle and I have the same size in 24″, can I use what I have?
Circular needles come in a wide variety of lengths, 12″, 16″, 20″, 24″, 29″, 32″, 40″, 47″, and 60″
Generally, the weight of the yarn determines how many stitches will fit on the needle but a good indicator of the “best” size depends on the circumference of your project.
- Look for “finished size” dimension information on the pattern.
- Look at the schematic and find the flat width and double that number.
- Or, do the math: Divide the number of cast on stitches by the gauge, i.e. 204 stitches cast on at a gauge of 18 stitches to 4″ would be 18 divided by 4″ or 4 ½ stitches per inch, then 204 divided by 4 ½ stitches for a circumference of 45.33″.
Now that you know the circumference of the garment, you know the maximum length needle you can use. The needle length must be less than the circumference. You cannot make online casinos a sweater with a circumference of 40″ stretch to a 60″ needle circumference.
But, what is the minimum length I can squeeze the project on to? Think about circular needles as two needles with a connector. Each needle end is approximately 4 – 5″ long, so the connector is about 8 – 10″ shorter than the length specified on the packaging. A 29″ needle has about a 19″ connector. You can comfortable work 1.75 – 3 times as many inches of knitting per inch of connector. So a 29″ needle will comfortable hold between 1.75 X 19 = 33 up to 3 x 19 = 57.”
Next time you shop, check the back of an Addi Turbo Circular Needle, it has a chart suggesting appropriate needle length for everything from doll sweater to afghans.