Wednesday, September 30, 2009

860 machine and ribber

In still working to having the craft room finished I have set up machines, and been testing to see that they work right.

I got the Brother HK860 machine set up with the 850 ribber. When I checked the alignment of main bed to ribber it was really off. So I set out to figure out how to align them. Wow, the only written instructions I could find were not very clear. So that wasn't working so well for me.

Then I remembered that I had some videos that starts you out on setting up the ribbers and their use. These are by someone named Ann Kite. There are actually a series of these and I have the 7-A to 7-D. Most of it is quite boring to me (sorry to Ann if she is still around), as she goes through a series of different machines, not just the brother. At least I know that if I wound up with other machines I would have these to help with set up.

So I managed to set the alignment both vertical and horizontal as both were off. I continued on to watch a little of the cast on. I have worked a little ribber work on the Brother KH 230 with its ribber but the setup of the knit and ribber carriages are somewhat different, not a lot but knowing the difference is a must. I do have the 850 manual, and Kite does show things a bit differently, sort of backwards to my manual.

Then I ran into a problem. During the third row of a tubular cast on my carriage jammed. It jammed hard and I wasn't even moving the carriage fast. At first I thought a needle had gotten out of line and caused the jam but nope all needles were in line. So I gave it another try. Jammed again, only this time I had more expectations of it happening and was going even slower.

I couldn't even figure out what carriage was causing the jam. So I separated the carriages and and moved each by themselves to test, it was the main bed carriage. So now to try to figure out the cause of the jam. The needles looked good, the carriage seemed to be fine as far as I could tell, but that jam was happening so it was something, just what?

I decided to test to see if my 930 carriage would work on the machine. It did and knitted beautifully. OK, so something is going on with the 840 carriage. I got the 860 machine without a carriage and only managed to get the 840 carriage, which is the same carriage, for this machine. I have knitted before with this carriage on this machine as single bed knitting and haven't had a problem till now, and only during this cast on.

I also have an extra 910 carriage. So I pulled it out in hopes that it too work work on the 860 machine. Wouldn't even know till I tried. Before I tried though it needed a bit of cleaning and some oil. I turned the 910 carriage over and started fiddling with it to see just how gummed up it was. That's when I discovered something. There is a spring from one side of the carriage to the other at both ends, and that spring moves one of the levers. I picked up the 930 carriage and see the same thing, but on the 940 carriage one of those springs was gone. At least I though so.

You see I have a very mechanical hubby. He doesn't think he is but I have seen different. He might not be trained in things but he can look, see problems, and many times fix them. So I took the two carriages to him last night and showed him the problem. My intention was to discover just where I could get a new spring and have him fix the carriage if he could. Low and behold he says the spring is not gone. It is still attached to one end but came loose from the lever. He fixed it. WOW! It works. I went back and started over and not only did the tubular cast on but knitted about 30 rows of ribbing. Neat, he is so awesome.

The only difference this time is that I was using Berta's DVD on using your ribber. Berta is a lot easier to listen to. She doesn't do that stiff, monotone teaching and is easy listening. I do so like Berta's DVD's. I just bought her latest one, using the Knit Leader, that should be winging its way in a week or two. It would be on its way but Berta is waiting for a package of seed stitchers to get to her so she can send them with the DVD. That's ok, these are much needed for one of my machines. I have large ones, but not the smaller ones. So this will be great. (no Berta is not selling them, they are a gift to some of us from another machine knitter, she managed to snag a huge lot of them and is passing her great luck around to members of the group we are in).

So now the machine can knit with the ribber, now on to learning how to use the punch card unit. Seems I might have to punch a few cards also. I don't really have many sets of punch cards that came as packets for the machine. Most of what I have are pre-punched from patterns others have done or ones that people have punched themselves. I do have the punch card file to print off what I want, need, or will want to use, and I have plenty of blank cards to do the punching.

Well, that is all for now.

Oh I have talked about the hubby's greenhouse and did take a few pictures yesterday after he put many of his plants in there for the start of their fall/winter season. So as soon as I can get them loaded to the computer I will place a few on here for people to see. It is not a large greenhouse and was mostly built for his tropical plants and his cactus, but he does have a couple of tomato plants in there. The hope is that even though he doesn't keep it really warm these plants will produce for a bit longer to give us a little longer picking season.

One last thing. I now have to set out to figure out why the end needles on the little I did last night, don't want to knit off. They hold that new stitch and I had to manually knit almost every time. I know I read about this somewhere, so later it will be a search for this. My brain keeps saying not enough weight so maybe, we shall see.

I got tired of playing machine time, so left the whole thing for my crochet project. I don't have many done but I am working on daisy squares to make a small afghan from them. I am using two colors, a pink and a yellow, edging them in black. They are so pretty. You can see the link to the pattern on the left side bar of this blog. Just scroll down a bit. Such a lovely pattern. It seems complex at first but really is easy to do. Krystal, the designer, also has a group at yahoo now for those who need extra help. She has some awesome files in there showing how to do these squares. To get the pattern all she asks for it a square or two from you sent to her for her charity work and you can take your time sending it. She trusts that people will and that is a fine thing she does. Then she puts those squares together to donate. Take a look see at her site and glance at the map. You can see she has squares coming from all over.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009


Samples of passap machine knitting using pushers.

This is also a passap sample:

Another passap sample:

A sample of racking on the Brother KH 230 with ribber. See the second picture to see my boo-boo. I dropped a stitch on the ribber bed and didn't catch it soon enough.

This is a sample the passp book has you do to see what different settings can make.

This hat is another of my experiments on the innovations machine. I used two strands of 2/24 cone yarn, and kept switching the placement of the yarn. One strand will go into the yarn guide and then the next is on top. If you leave them that way one color goes to one side the other color to the other side. By removing the strands from the guide, switching the cones placement and reinstalling the strands colors switched you can make the colors change places.

This hat was also done on the innovations machine. It is for my grand daugher. I my skills, my machine her (natural) grandmothers yarn. It turned out perfect for her. I just need to make a scarf to go with it.

This is a simple shawl I made on the Brother KH230 machine. I sent this to my MIL for that just a little chill in the house moment.

This scarf is the last thing I made. It was done on a Knit King compuknit III machine. It is over six feet long, and wide enough that it can be worn over the head and still have plenty of length to wrap it. This I made for my MIL.

These hats were a lesson in what not to do. I made these for my daughter. She was going to take pictures of twins and called to ask if I could make her two hats, a pink and purple and do pompoms on them the opposite color. She wanted them like some other hats I have done her. So loom knitted these are.

The thing is I had no idea of the size of the twins. I did know they were young. So I called her and asked about head size. She didn't know. So I decided to make three sizes using the knifty knitter blue loom. She wanted that larger weaved look and this loom is perfect.

She called on a Fri night, pictures were to be done Sun morning. So get to work. Oh yea, not hard. I did two hats, a small and a medium, Fri night. Started early on Sat to get the rest made. Looming the hats wasn't so bad but I decided to take a break from the hats and make the pompoms. Oh wow, that took most of the day. All that winding and trimming.

By the time I finished all the pompoms, and the other hats, it was 7pm. I had sat all day long making these with very short breaks. I am hear to say never again. My hips, legs, back, arms, fingers, shoulders, neck, head, hands, wrists, and you name it complained for days afterward. They hated me and I hated myself. Marathons are just not in the numbers for this old lady, but they did turn out really cute.

BTW: it was the smallest of the hats that fit the twins, and they could have been a bit smaller. The twins are both under five pounds.

I'm back, this is very long

At least for this moment. It has been quite a while since I posted, except for that cute picture of that little girl with her big people sign.

So what have I been up to, lots I can tell you that. First the job has taken a different turn but it still mostly the same. I am having to rake my brain for those "OK how do I do this in this program and make it come out right". That is usually an over night thinking bout. I do have bookkeeping and accounting training (college as well as they do for you), but still from time to time something comes up that just stumps you for a bit. Keeps the old brain cells active. LOL So the boss brings me these things and says how do we do this, or enter this and I have no clue in the beginning of that how. So set the cells in motion and leave them to do their thing while I do other stuff. So that's that. The boss has taken over the A/P's and banking, and I am mostly back to A/R's, except for those "how do we do" type of things. Yes more time for me.

So what have I been doing with that more time. Well, it has been summer. So there is the garden. I have cooked up so much tomato sauce that seeing another tomato should be a horror story, but I do like tomatoes. Yum, tomato and lettuce sandwiches with a little mayo and a pinch of salt (lately the mayo seems to be rather salty as I cut lots of salt and sugar from my diet, so most times that pinch gets left out).

Along with doing the sauce there has been drying bell peppers. The hubby planted a bunch of them, yellow, red, and green. Drying them has them available for all kinds of good tasting dishes the hubby thinks up, but it is a lot of work. I have green ones ready to come off the vines right now and a few yellow and red again. I have quite a lot of jars now and need to seal the extra for freshness. I just am waiting for a new seal for my vacuum sealer to arrive. I have done in the old one. I think my dryer might need to be replaced next year. At the very least I am thinking second dryer so I can do more at one time. Twelve trays is turning out not to be enough.

I have also done frozen green beans, broccoli, and a little bit of giant snow peas. The snow peas just didn't do all that great. Ah well, we can't have it all. Extras of those would have been great for the hubby's stir fry's.

Then this year I did some herbs. Two didn't turn out but that was a test in what they like. We tested wrong. I did get some nice batches of sage, oregano, and a bunch of two kinds of parsley. I think I will be able to get another batch before the really bad weather hits and takes them out.

Then there was a bit of babysitting. I did some for the daughters two boys, but not much for the son's boys. The son is not talking with me. He made me angry and I told him not to call. He took that to heart and hasn't for a couple of months now. I don't need some pipsqueak child telling me what I am or am not when he knows nothing about it. ROFLOL, I am an adult and I feel that I can choose what to think. My children do not have to do it for me and I will not do "the old lady falling into line act" because one of my children thinks I should. Nope this old lady has more spine then that.

The extra girl moved away with her two children. We talk on the phone quite a bit but they are a now 175 miles away instead of the less then a half of a mile that they were. So I only saw the kids once this summer. Jobs just weren't available here and the prospect for her hubby didn't look good. So they moved to where they thought it would be better. They were wrong but that's ok they like where they are right now. The kids even have nice back yard and other nice children to play with. So all's well as they say. Heather called yesterday to tell me she got them a dog. They are loving it.

My other daughter moved back to town. She is now only a few miles from me instead of 30 miles away. I thought I would be able to see those two grands more but she is always so busy that I actually see them less then I did. Part of life, she is building her business and I have been busy with stuff also.

My room for crafting. I have said that I needed to redo it. Well, it is almost done, but there will never be enough room for all I want as it is just a small room. I still wouldn't be there without the hubby's help. He did more shelving high on the wall, one long single one, and one that has cubicles and an upper shelf for me to put things on. Then at a house he was rekeying (he is a locksmith), he ran across some cubicles that the broker told him to take. Many times people leave things and they just haul that stuff to the dump. So now my cone yarns are in those cubicles. A very neat set up it is.

My daughters new house has a garage that been turned into a studio apartment. She has now turned it into a photo studio. It is still a work in progress but it is coming along nicely and she has even been using it. Her husband took out some smaller cabinets and built her a big one that she can store her props in. So they gave me the other two that they took out. One was perfect to fit in the old refrigerator spot, the new refrigerator was just to big for that area. It didn't have shelves but did have drawers on one side. So the hubby built shelves for the other side and installed them.

The other cabinet he installed in my craft room, and also cut and installed shelves in it. The top of this cabinet is perfect for my little TV in there, plus I have a VHS player, and a DVD player. I can use these to view the VHS and DVD tapes for machine knitting that I have picked up and be right in the same room with the machines. The inside I am using small containers I am getting from the Salvation Army to store tools, crochet hooks, machine tools, needles and other like stuff. I haven't totally finished this. For now all like tools are together but soon I want a container labeled for each machine with its tools.

Now down to the machines. I have set up the Knit King Compuknit III on it's metal stand, a Brother KH230 and ribber, and now a Brother 860 with an 850 ribber. Been working on that the last couple of days. The ribber was really misaligned so yesterday was a work in progress figuring out the proper vertical and horizontal adjustments. It is working now but I found a bad needle so that needs to be replaced today. Oh bother one more thing. I am also thinking that there might be something wrong with one of the pieces that goes on the ribber to attach it to the machine. I have a back up set and when I go to replace the machine needle I will match two up to see if there is a difference, maybe I will just replace it altogether.

Last weekend the hubby and son went with the daughter and SIL with the two grands down to see grandma, and grand-papa (my husbands mom and dad). They had not yet seen Tanner except in pictures and Athea wanted them to meet their other great-grandson. Mason already loves them and they say that Tanner took to them very well. I bet they were very tired once these boys left. They are really good boys but very very active. The hubby was going to do some work on their home, replacing doorknobs, fixing a few things and then to just see them.

So I had all day Saturday and the morning and early afternoon Sunday to myself (they did just an over night trip). I cannot believe how much I got done in the room with no one to bother me. I was amazed. I still needed to move the passap in the room before I could set up those other machines, well the compuknit was up and I had used it, but the other two were setting in a corner out of the way (not many corners left in this room so it was more like toward a corner leaning on a book case, I have three of those now).

That passap is a very heavy machine. Moving it has been impossible except to drag it a few inches. I just couldn't pick it up. The last few months working around here has changed me a bit. I have muscle. Not much but that little that you have in arms from lugging children around and lose when you get old is kind of back. It all that lugging those huge heavy pots of water for canning and the huge have pots of sauce. I have an outdoor set up for cooking but have a further distance to rid myself of the old water and clean the pots but it keeps the cooking heat located outside instead of inside.

Then in the room I have bunches of tubs of yarn. This room is so small that in order to work in there it is that move things to do something, move them again, and again, and again, you get the point. So I reached for a cup of coffee and shocked myself when I saw those muscles. I hadn't seen them in years.

I thought to myself that I should be able to figure out a way to get that passap machine into the room. I have this rolling file holder, just an open thing but with wheels and a little more muscle now so I got the idea of placing the machine onto the hubby's garden wagon, wheeling to the back door, placing machine on the rolling file holder and wheeling it to the room. No big deal and not much heavy work. I think I could do that much.

So I go out to machine set a table close by to set the machine on once I have removed its clamps, and can take it off its stand. Here is the hard part, getting that heavy machine from stand to table then from table to wagon. I lifted it and stood there shocked. It wasn't heavy. Well, it was but not like it was three months ago when it was given to me. I carried it all the way into the house and to the craft room all by myself. I shocked myself. ROFLOL

So now the passap is in the room, the other three machines are up, and I have one or two more that I want up, but that requires more work. Remember those tubs of yarn I mentioned. They have to come out of that room. In order for that to happen, I have an outdoors storage area that I must clean out, then I can put my yarn tubs in there. Yes more work, but I am well on my way to being where I want to be with this room. Also once I have moved the tubs then the hubby can remove the current shelves in the closet and replace them with larger ones for more storage area. The ones he put in there last year are just too small.

Shaun has also been working on his greenhouse. He got some metal siding from a torn down store, they built a new one, and at a yard sale he got some external paint. The man who sold the paint is a painter house painter and this was excess from jobs. It was good enough for the greenhouse even if the color isn't all that great. He got a better color for the inside from the same man.

Now he has shelves up and it is looking better then last year. I have another outdoors storage area that I had plastic shelves in. Yesterday he built me a larger shelving unit and I gave him those plastic shelf units for his greenhouse. They look much better in there, and will give him a bit of extra room for smaller plants. Shaun has a lot of plants and many are tropical or close to tropical, and some desert, he likes cactus, don't ask me why. Nasty sticky things. One of his cactus turned into to four other pots of cactus over the summer. What's he going to do after next summer with that one. He will soon be over run. Anyways, those plants need to be where the winter freeze won't kill them. His greenhouse was mostly empty all summer but it will be quite full for the winter. My goodness last year it was like a jungle in there.

So now I have other shelving in my storage area and that means moving stuff all over again, but in this process I now have a better place to store my summer canning supplies. It's all to the good but sure is lots and lots of work.

So that is what I have been up to.

Note: Next post I will place some pictures of a couple of projects I did, and some sample swatches. Not much but a few things. I haven't done that much crafting over the last few months.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Cute picture, true story