Circular needles,

Hi All,,

I have just discovered and tried circular needles, and find the much better than ordinary straight ones,

Does any one have any tips that will help me when using them, (I will not be knitting circular with them)

Does anyone have any experience with "Addi" kniting needles.

ronhuber's picture

I only use circulars (and dp's for socks). I find that with circulars that the weight of the knitting hangs below the knitting and not to one side and there is less stress on the wrists. I usually knit sweaters in the round, especially Fair Isle and Arans, because I like to see the pattern on every round. I have some Addis but lately I have been buying Hiya Hiya and am very pleased with them.

kiwiknitter's picture

I use circs for everything, including socks (2 socks on 2 needles at the same time). I agree about the ergonomic benefits of circs. Since I knit only fair isle jumpers now, I only knit in the round (I can't imagine purling the pattern in reverse). I began with Addis years ago but switched to Hiya Hiya and am sold on them.

Never trust a man who, when left alone in a room with a tea cozy, doesn't try it on.  ~Billy Connolly

Joe-in Wyoming's picture

Addis are nice needles and their Sock Rocket needles are quite nice for Magic Loop socks. Not quite as nice as Chiao Goo red cable lace tipped needles, but still pretty decent.
I find I'm using circulars for flat knitting more and more because it is less stressful on my wrists and fingers. The one thing to watch for is that your edge stitches do not end up a bit tighter on narrow projects because of the cables being thinner than your actual needles. Not a common problem but it has been known to happen when I've been knitting.

Books, knitting, cats, fountain pens...Life is Good.

CLABBERS's picture

I'm a huge fan of using circular needs for almost all my knitting. I have a set of Addi Clicks interchangeable and the KnitPicks interchangeables as well. I find the Knit Picks needles sharper and because they are screwed to the cables and you have to use a little paperclip-type tool to tighten them, which makes them a bit fiddly. I do like to use them when knitting raglan sweaters from the top down instead of scrap yarn to hold the live stitches for the arms. They come with nifty little screw-on ends. That way, when you are ready to begin knitting the needles, there are no stitches to pick up, you just put the needles on and then I go back to my Addis and start knitting, which transfers the stitches from the KnitPicks needles to the Addis.

I just like the weight of the Addis and the length of the actual needle part. With traditional straight needles, I am forever getting the yarn wrapped around the ends or jabbing the ends into my stomach or the arms of the chair I am curled up in while knitting.

Enjoy your new discovery!


Thanks for the info Mark,

Can you tell me the length of the Knit Picks and also the Addi, I to am used to straight needles and am concerned that the other needles will be to small and fiddly. I am looking to get a set within the next couple of weeks.

Many thanks,


CLABBERS's picture

Hi Colin,
My KnitPicks interchangeable needles are 4.5" but feel like 5" with the the way they screw onto the cable. My Addi Clicks are 5". I have some 3.5" circulars that I bought for doing socks, but I really don't like them. I have smaller hands with a ring size of 8, but still prefer the 5". My suggestion would be to go to a store that sells knitting needles and pick up some inexpensive ones in varying lengths and give them a try. It's cheap research when considering spending a lot of money on Addi Clicks or similar needles. Good luck with your search. Email me if care to chat more.

kiwiknitter's picture

Your comments about trying to use straight needles made me laugh! I learned to knit with straight needles but never knitted anything with them, switching to circs immediately after learning the knitting technique. (I should add that I did knit a jumper on 40 cm DPNs and a knitting belt - but that's another story.) Every once in a while, someone will ask me to assist them with a knitting problem and present the project to me on straight needles. Honestly, I can't figure out how to even hold them!

Never trust a man who, when left alone in a room with a tea cozy, doesn't try it on.  ~Billy Connolly

Bill's picture

my favorites are the ChiaoGoo stainless steel LACE needles with the red cables. Be careful ...decide wether you want the short 4inch tips or the longer 5inch tips. If you knit hats, you can buy the fixed 16 inch circulars. (The five inch tips are a bit long for creating a hat needle.) Also notice that the regular ChiaoGoo needles have a bent needle, the LACE ones are straight.

kiwiknitter's picture

Bill, you were the one who turned me on to Hiya Hiya. Do you like the ChiaoGoo better? I love my Hiya Hiya needles and use the exclusively. I've looked at the ChiaoGoo online but didn't have an opinion so I'd like to hear yours, please.

Never trust a man who, when left alone in a room with a tea cozy, doesn't try it on.  ~Billy Connolly

Bill's picture

Jesse, the HH and CG needles are almost identical...only the cables are different. CG's are a red plastic coated wire and the HH are monofilament. It's mostly a personal choice. Both companies are excellent with replacing the occasional broken join.
I get my ChiaoGoo needles from

Tom Hart's picture

Addi turbo’s are the only needles I use. I like the nickel-plated finish on them. Very, very slippery. Like knitting with greased butter.

Right now I’m knitting a rug (a flat project) using two 60” Addi turbos as straight needles. And even though it’s a flat project, it is 156 stitches across so I use the magic loop method of only working on a handful of stitches at a time. Addi’s and the loop: it’s the way I do pretty much anything, knitwise.

kiwiknitter's picture

Addi Turbos were my first circs and I still have a sentimental attachment to them. I have given them up because of the stiff cord. I do have the Addi Clicks but there are two problems for me. First, they don't come in small enough sizes and second if and when I have to tink back, the join always comes undone. But, you're correct - they are shiny and slippery - my first knitting love!

Never trust a man who, when left alone in a room with a tea cozy, doesn't try it on.  ~Billy Connolly

Tallguy's picture

I use circulars for almost everything. I do have some dps that I use occasionally, because I need that size! I do have straight needles, but I can't remember when I used any last.

I have the KnitPick's Options and have looked at their Harmony sets. I prefer to use the longest I can get probably 42" or something like that. I use them for everything -- flat, shawls, mittens, socks, anything. I like the Magic Loop method. It is my feeling (and my opinion only) that long circulars are the only needles a person needs! I can't understand using anything short like 16" -- I can't handle those! Yes, some brands have short tips so check them out. I like the longer fixed ends. I recently completed a blanket with TWO circulars attached together to get all around the blanket, and was very happy I had this set of needles.

Also watch for flexible cables. Some brands are very stiff and stay curled forever! I also have some older wire cables which are not flexible, but are nice to use. I have a huge collection of circulars in every material (steel, plastic, metal, bamboo) and by most manufacturers. Some I like better than others. Everyone has their preferences. Try them all and see which work the best for you. It's like buying a pair of pants -- there are many designs, for many shapes and sizes. But you have to try them on to see which fit you the best.

kiwiknitter's picture

I tried the 16" needles for some cuffs once - and only once - as it resulted in terrible RSI. I can't see the advantage to using them. I've tried Magic Loop on a few projects but I'm not a fan of it; personal preference I suppose. Hiya Hiya sells a cord joiner to make longer cords which I find to be very practical at times. The advice about flexible cables is very important. I loved my Addi Turbos but finally gave up on them because of the stiff cords. I understand that they now come with a flexible cords but these are not available here and the internet sites I've looked at don't mention it in their product listings.

Never trust a man who, when left alone in a room with a tea cozy, doesn't try it on.  ~Billy Connolly

michaelpthompson's picture

I use whatever I find most suitable for the job. Like Joe in Wyoming, I like circs for many projects, but unlike Joe and others, I still do socks with dpns. I think I'm archaic or something. Just getting ready to do some fingerless gloves with size US 1 steel needles and a knitting sheath. I'll let you know how that goes. Still working on my first project with 2 circs, a Morgan style flat cap. Very confusing at first, but I'm seeing the advantage of it.

"All knitting is just one stitch at a time."