Why? Angle of the tip? Tip too sharp? Too slippery? Do you have other
needles of the same size that you do like? Maybe you just do not like
knitting tiny, tiny stitches : )
If the tip is too slippery ( and many commercial are) texture them with some
1000 grit emery paper. That often helps. Your fingers will not feel a
difference, but the yarn will.
What do you consider to be tiny, tiny stitches? These days I knit mostly in
the range of 28 to 48 stitches/ 4 inches. For example the gansey is 7.3 spi
on #1s with Fisherman's Wool, the sport weight is knitting at ~9 spi and the
cashmere at about 11.7. My eyes are too old to go any finer.
Well, I have used very fine emery paper to change the texture and sometimes
the shape of the tips of all of my commercial stainless steel knitting
needles. The first time, it was very hard to get up the nerve to take
sandpaper to those beautifully polished, and Oh! so precious new needles.
But, I liked them better after texturing.
In fact, whenever I take up a new style of yarn, I spend some time knitting
gauge swatches and running out to the shop to "adjust" the tips of my
needles to better suit that yarn. If I think that I am going to really like
that yarn (i.e., it was on sale and I bought a lot LOL) I make a new set of
needles and just dedicate them to that yarn.
With the steel rod about US$0.25/foot, each set of steel needles is not too
expensive -- even cheaper than brass. The brass needles were pretty, quick
to make, easy to change the shape of the points, and they knit very
smoothly. But now, that I have learned to knit with a knitting sheath, I
find the steel DPN can knit just as smoothly and much faster due to the
spring action of the steel. (Knit and learn!) Yesterday, I made a hanger
for the bird feeder out of a set of brass knitting needles that I made last
December. By the time I have made all the steel DPN that I want, I expect to
have about 7 or 8 sets of 5 DPN. This will include at least 2 sets of 5 -
18 inch long US # 1 with different tip shapes for different yarns.
One of the great chefs of the world once told me that, "All a chef needs is
a fire, a sauté pan, and a knife. Every thing else in the kitchen is just a
toy." Maybe I would actually do better knitting if I just settled on one
yarn and one set of needles. I guess, if all I had was wassit, (an early
commercial yarn) I would only need one set of needles. Socks, underwear,
and ganseys, all from the same yarn, and off the same needles.
I would add 2 things - a lid and a big spoon. (and something to
sharpen the knife with! And for me, instead of a saute pan, I'd have
my large cast iron skillet. But apart from these minor differences,
this is so true!
Sauté is a cooking method. You can sauté in a cast iron skillet! When you
do, it is a sauté pan! And, you can bake a cake in it - so then it is a
cake pan. In particular, pineapple upside down cake seems to do best in a
cast iron cake pan : )
OK with the iron skillet in the kitchen, I absolutly love (although my
wrists are getting to old for it) I would add my trench digger from WWII,
I bought in a army surpluse store, for the garden, best tool I ever had,
used it for the 50 years I lived in Canada.
Q. So how come we are not still using and content with those simple,
durable, multipurpose items?
A. My DW scrubs my cast iron with soap and abrasive until it sparkles, and
then complains when it leaves rust marks in the shelf : ) She likes her
cooking pots clean. So, I cook with Teflon, and the CI is packed away for
the day when I need it's simple virtues.
I have certainly never tried more than a dozen stitches per inch, so I can
not say from personal experience that a knitting sheath would help.
However, with my big needles, (#1s) the sheath supports and stabilizes the
knitting so it is easier to get the tip in the stitch, (I knit tight) and
because the spring of the needles does half the work, it goes much faster.
So, my guess is that, yes, a knitting sheath would allow you to knit faster.
It also frees up the right hand to more precisely control tension. And, my
big theme is that knitting with a sheath reduces stress on the hands and
wrists, which is good if you are doing a lot of stitches.
And, the knitting sheath can be designed to support very short, curved
needles for doing miniature work or very fine gloves as in example
ID=4&SubCatID=56 where you can see the fine curved needles. This would
allow using shorter, lighter needles for very delicate work.
Aaron, you really cook in Teflon.....methings that a bit of extra iron is
better than all those horrible chemicals from Teflon. Go visit a Teflon
making factory. Cast Iron, is washed in hot water and soap and given a
wipe with on old cloth with a bit of olive oil so it looks deep black.
When I have baked pancase for instance, I just whipe the pan with a cloth
and put it away. I have a Dutch oven, a large and small frying pan, and a
Dutch waffle iron and many other baking pans. it conduct the heat
perfectly and fast. Much better than those frilly Teflon pans. LOL
A fellow across the Bay murdered his mother because she washed the seasoning
off of his cast iron pans. I was on his side : )
I have a cast iron pot that came across the Oregon Train in the 1860s by ox
drawn wagon, and it is still in perfect condition - but I do not keep it in
the kitchen. I do not keep it any where my wife is likely to find it ...
and scrub it with harsh chemicals ; )
I know about halogen chemistry, and the toxicology of Teflon cooking
implements. I also know something about the chemistry of cast iron, what
the chemical nature of the black surface on cast iron is, and the toxicology
of cooking in cast iron. Just because cast iron is a traditional material,
does not make it any safer than Teflon. Sorry! I know the risks and I do
not worry about either the risk from cast iron or the risk from Teflon.
Those risks are a thousand times less than the risk from an auto accident.
Those risks are a hundred times less than the risk of health problems from
the chemical plasticizers that we all now carry in our bodies. And, if you
want to really worry; then worry about global warming. It is coming a whole
lot faster than any of the computer models predict. Those models assume
that ice behaves in a linear fashion, even as it approaches its melting
point. However, ice gets very weak as it approaches it melting point. The
computer models do not understand ice. Ice sags and flows, and ends up
being fresh water in the sea. Fresh water in the North Atlantic can change
the global currents for a few years. Europe and England could freeze - fast.
Here in California, the rains could fail leaving 20 million people without
water, or one really big storm could wash out our levees (a la Katrina) and
allow salt water into the water supplies that those 20 million people and
the crops that feed North America depend on. Of course, one good earthquake
could knock those all those water supplies out in an instant, also! And,
the Feds do not think that it is an emergency? With issues like that, I do
not need to worry about Teflon or cast iron.
I just looked at the care sheet for our cook wear. Turns out, it has a
ceramic lining that feels like Teflon but does not have any halogens in it.
We call it Teflon, but its not. I'm sure it has its risks, but it is not bad
to cook on, but it sure does not invoke the passion of cast iron. It is OK
for some things, but every so often, I have to sneak out my cast iron wok
for stir fry.
This sounds like my house. I like my pans to be washed, husband likes
his cast iron to be wiped out with a paper towel and whatever else he
does with them, if anything. The final straw was when I fixed myself
some eggs and they tasted like onions and peppers - and I wasn't in the
mood for my eggs to taste like onions and peppers.
I got myself a no stick skillet that nobody else can touch (daughter has
a way of "forgetting" how to care for them), and I don't touch any of
the cast iron skillets.
Marriage. One big compromise :)
Just because cast iron is a traditional material,
Personally, I cook mostly in ceramic or glass (Corning and Pyrex) and my
favorite skillet is stainless steel. All of these go in the dishwasher
and usually come out both clean and contented.
Olwyn Mary in New Orleans.
Posted via a free Usenet account from http://www.teranews.com
Dear Sweet Aaron,
I am indeed concerned about global warming. I do not worry about using my
cast Iron pots, but will not use Teflon, since I find it giving off an
unpleasant smell. Since I am now 70, there is little I can do about most
of these things so I Pick my battles. Usually only the ones I have some
controle ove, such as the use of castiron over Teflon. My cast Iron pots
are all pitch black, and have always been that way. The odd time when
someone else does the dishes, and does not wipe the pot dry right away,
there may be a little bit of rust, but I clean that away with a bit of
oil, no sweat. I think that your 18960 Oragon trail pot is a bit unhappy
sitting so pristene, far a way from the kitchen. It would love to have
some cornbread with black beans to cook, or some nice homemade soup. Poor
pot, made to be used.....
Murder no less, such drama. On the other hand I could Happely wack Otto
one with the cast iron frying pan, when he is in one of his tediously,
My pots are washed, and seasoned and constantly used. all of them, if my
wrists and hands would you cooperate, we would be in heaven.
I've used cast iron pans for 40 years and my mother used them for 40
years before me. She always washed her pans and so do I. It won't ruin
the seasoning if you wash it gently with a little soap and water. This
"wipe only" thing is a yuppie fantasy. I often use a cast iron pan to
fry fish and you certainly wouldn't want that taste to linger!
I brought three cast iron pans to Italy when I moved here. My husband
had never seen anything like them. One is large and very heavy.
Sometimes my husband takes it out to show people.
I recently read a cookware review in the New York Times, and cast
iron, plus another brand which was cast iron with some sort of ceramic
covering, came out on top for stick-free cooking and easy cleaning. I
can't remember the other brand, but it wasn't one of the expensive
ones, none of which did very well.
My email address is my first initial followed by my last name at libero dot it.