Tuesday, January 21, 2014

what am I?

So, I was away, had a nice holiday and I come back and there’s, like, a bunch of messages, some asking for the minion hat pattern and they, like, wanted it for last weekend (I do feel really bad that I wasn’t able to get it to them in time), someone else was asking frantic questions about integrating shape files with stitch patterns, an OPP, BTW…and then a nice lady from PEI asking me about programming a lace pattern into her Brother 970. Seems she reads this blog and in the past, I offered an apology and a ’how to fix this’ (with a little help from Alice from ND) (see ‘hanging my head in shame’, Mar 21, 2012) about entering memo info into the Brother 970 CB1 box.
Basically, if you follow me, you know I’ve admitted to being somewhat biased in favouring my Silver Reed/Studio machines, but I have tried to provide the proper information for making my patterns and designs on Brother machines as well.
So, my PEI knitter writes (I know she is a good, accomplished knitter and won’t just be blowing me off) that she’s tried to enter a punchcard pattern, #18, into her machine, not to holey, blah-blah- blah, she includes a scan of the fabric (of course, it’s an OPP) she is trying to emulate – turns out the original was hand-transferred. I do not know what #18 punchcard looks like.
Then she says:
I thought I had the programming correct, following Page 44 of the instruction book and putting in N beside every lace row and 2 beside the 2 stockinette rows. However, when I finished and tried to enter it to knit, up pops a snide little "this is not a lace pattern" note on the screen, even though I indicated using the lace carriage. My original pattern was numbered 910
(sidebar: the  CB1 gives you the next number, starting at 900 for your own entered stitch patterns)
- should I give it a different number -  I can't see how to do THAT in the book!(no, you shouldn't) and I’m thinking, cripes, I thought she did a ton of knitting! My new entry pattern is at #950 and I’ve only really used this machine to test out lace patterns – gosh, does that mean I’ve done 50 lace patterns on this thing? sounds about right… Maybe it's not possible to adapt a punchcard lace pattern to the 970? Could you point me in the direction of an electronic lace pattern like the "Berry Crush".
I first send her a note asking if she still needs help because it’s happened in the past that I answer some involved question and they’ve already moved on…yes, she is still interested and awaiting my solution. Damn, maybe I should have just hit delete…I do some more unpacking and tidying up but this is starting to bug me – I do not have the answer off the top of my head and if she followed mine and Alice’s and the Brother instruction manual’s advice and still can’t get it…I know it means a trip to the machine (in the basement). Just before New Year’s I had a problem with my hot water tank and there is a bunch of stuff I had to move to get at the tank and it is laying on the floor, blocking the 970. (heavy sigh). Get the stuff put away  and gain access to the machine.
I take a closer look at her swatch, see it’s similar to SR#15, electronic, a 12 st X 28 row repeat and mess about with that. Enter it in DAK and print it out so it has big enough row numbers to read and go down the  2 flights of stairs and enter it in the CB1 box . It looks fine but when I go to air-knit it (no yarn, just passing the carriage) the lace carriage is screwing up and it’s not hitting the sensors properly to advance to the next row – drat! I can tell it’s because the sponge bar needs replacing – the needle butts are basically all over the place and the carriage is sitting too low to contact the sensor properly. I do not have a new sponge bar. Maybe if I cast on and knit for real it will work. Back upstairs, get yarn. Go back down, forget instruction manual. Up, Down. Forgot something to write with. Up, down. At least I’m getting some exercise…I remember she said about the punchcard thing, so I’m thinking, if that’s her problem, my SR pattern isn’t going to solve it. Back up, find a Brother punchcard lace stitch pattern in an old book  that is 8 st X 18 rows (#623) – the photo looks like exactly what she wants! Armed with the manual, the new stitch pattern printout, the punchcard book, the 970 Stitchworld book, printout of the blog, and pen, back down to the machine, saying to myself, ‘why the heck am I doing this??’ I can’t just let it go, I have to solve this!
BTW, the brother instruction manual IS the crappola!! You have to go to page 33 for pattern creation, page 36 for modification and then you need to jump to page 44 for memo info input AND the example they give you has nothing to do with lace!!! WTH? so, I’m pulling up a built-in lace pattern and trying to see how that memo information differs – Ar-r-r-r-g-g-gh! 4 hours later, I have it!! 

To enter the memo information, put '2' on row 8, 14 and 18 and 'N' on all other rows and it will work and it will recognize it as a lace pattern. So, the trick is, put a 2 on the even numbered row that is the end of the transfers, will indicate you are then going to knit 2 plain stockinette rows with the main carriage – the 2 plain rows look like they are entered in the stitch pattern but they are the 2 rows it take the lace carriage to get back to the left side after all the transfers are made - the stitch pattern does not advance when the main carriage is used. SO, the upshot is, any Silver Reed fashion lace stitch pattern can be used on the Brother electronic, as is, and you can add the memo info as above.
With a small feeling of satisfaction, I email Gill the good news – this morning, she messaged back:
EUREKA!!!!!!!  I did, and it did...knit, I mean! Can't thank you enough for that. The C.B. behaved like a dream and all is well.
Hope this helps someone else!
-your public machine knitting servant, MAO

BTW-by the way
CB1 – control box one
DAK - DesignaKnit
PEI-Prince Edward Island
OPP – other person’s pattern
SR – Silver Reed
WTH – a little more polite than WTF


Bente T said...

I think you are just so smart at finding things out. Hurrah!

365 Dresses said...

I always have to look up how to do this, too! I love the lace pattern---might have to try that one.
Happy New Year!