As lowly cowl knitter my cheap as chips set of 80cm circular needles (literally a portion of chips costs the same price) served me well. However, supersizing my knitting has proven that you get what you pay for.
For both my first and second non-cowl projects, my cheapo tools have suffered a tear to the plastic tubing right where it attaches to the needles. Botched repairs involved sellotape and electrical tape. Handily for the Rainy Day Vest it happened just after I divided for the armhole so I was able to switch to straight needles. My current project is knit completely in the round and I’m only half way through the body. I also twist the right needle as I knit and hold it so the cable is taught diagonally away from the join. No coincidence then that both times it has been the right needle that gets the tear.
I know that switching needles (even of the same size) mid-project is a huge risk to the gauge… but seriously what was I supposed to do?! I checked the ‘real’ size of the broken circular needles and purchased new fixed circular pair (mid-price range this time). I’m getting on well with the metal (yeah I risked a bamboo to metal swap too – knitting dangerously!), I like the weight and despite swapping needles my gauge hasn’t changed. Can you even tell where I swapped in the photo above?
Looking to the future, a set of interchangeable needles seems like a good Christmas present and I’ve been told to do my research before writing to Santa. But there is so much choice out there I’m overwhelmed. Any recommendations?