Ever since I started knitting socks, I’ve been searching for the perfect set of sock needles.
For me, this means DPNs. I don’t like circular needles for knitting in the round, though I use them for flat knitting. I just can’t get on with magic loop; constantly drawing through the cable drives me insane and there’s so much of it when you’re knitting something with a small diameter.
Anyway, even when limited to DPNs there’s an awful lot of choice. Different materials, different sizes. The perfect needle is not an absolute, it all depends on your personal preferences as a knitter. I’m still looking for mine.
Personally, I like needles with a sharp point, and not too grippy. Lately, I had been using stainless steel, which was working out pretty well, though I did find they could often end up slipping out of my work. They’re also quite heavy.
So I was excited about trying Knitter’s Pride Karbonz Needles. I figured the metal tips and the carbon fibre might offer just the right combination between smoothness and grippiness, and the material is light and warm to touch.
My order arrived last week. Unfortunately, the shop sent me a set of 20cm needles instead of my preferred 15cm. I could have send them back of course, but I decided I didn’t want to wait another week and went ahead and used the longer ones, even if it did mean that I started off with a prejudice against my new needles.
Look & Feel
The Karbonz certainly look the part. Slick metal tips, black main body. They look like space age knitting needles. They look luxurious. In short, they look the business.
They feel pretty good too. I like how light they are and how the material of the main body of the needle, the carbon fibre, feels.
I already had a pair of socks on the needles in the same size, so I changed the needles over. I know; the risk of gauge changes and all that, but that was a risk I was willing to take.
The first thing I noticed was that the Karbonz really do have lovely sharp points. I really like those.
I had been using stainless steel needles on the project previously, and the Karbonz are certainly much lighter, warmer and altogether more pleasant to handle.
They are also quite grippy. To be honest, they might be just a bit too grippy for my taste, though it is offset by the tips being metal. I found the fact that the stitches flowed easily over the tips meant the gripping of the carbon fibre didn’t really slow down the flow of my knitting too much. I also think the fact that the set I was using was longer than what I prefer makes it difficult for me to judge how grippy they really are, as there was a lot more needle to drag stitches over than what I’m accustomed to.
What I didn’t like about them was the fact there is a noticeable join between tip and needle. Obviously there is, as the two are made out of different materials. I found I felt a slight hitch every time a stitch passes over. I don’t think it slowed the flow of my knitting but it was still noticeable and of it didn’t annoy me, it certainly distracted me, though I was starting to get used to it.
Should you buy Karbonz needles? It depends on the type of knitter you are. Sleek sharp tips combined with a very grippy needle, with a noticeable join between the two. A lovely looking needle too.
These don’t come cheap, but I think they could well be worth it if they suit your style of knitting. I’d recommend to start with a single set to try them out before you splash out on more.