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The OpenKnit machine is an open-source, low cost, digital fabrication tool developed by Gerard Rubio. The machine affords the user the opportunity to create his own clothing from digital files. Designing, producing and wearing clothes can now happen in the very same place, allowing the user to make decisions regarding creativity and responsibility.

This instructable shows you how to build the OpenKnit machine step-by-step. The machine is work-in-progress: anyone is allowed and encouraged to reproduce it and help to improve it.

This instructable has been developed for the OpenKnit machine workshop organized by Gerard Rubio, Waag Society and TU/E within the CRISP Smart Textile Services project. We would like to thank the people at WeMake maker space for reviewing and adjusting this instructable. All additional comments and suggestions on both the design of the machine and the Instructable are very welcome!

Also see this video:

Print Your Own Beanie (Wally120 OpenKnit machine release) from Gerard Rubio on Vimeo.

Step 1: About Building This Machine

The process from start to scarf can be divided in three steps:

  • building the machine
  • connecting the machine
  • using the machine

This instructable shows you all the steps to build the structural part of the machine.

<p>Is it strong durable and dependable for industrial production ?</p><p>Plastic components don't look too trustable for more than 3 or 4 shirts .</p>
<p>What are the hole spacings for the 162mm long short vertical bars? These are 6mm holes correct?</p>
<p>how much did it cost?</p>
<p>Great project. But i recommend to use parts from automotive industry which is standardized and available worldwide.</p><p>This project can help many people just to get clothes. Global problem was made when China started global mass production with unfair business practices (price damping) in every country. The whole textile industry of former USSR superpower (neighbor of China) was like vanished completely (hundreds factories, millions people), the industry with long history and very unique textile patterns gone. Before real Detroit was many such textile cities which living many years in economical depression. Chinese textile import destroyed even manufacturing of local underwear completely, which is ridiculous. Authorities wasn't care about such catastrophe too much in 1990's. Dependence on chinese textile in such absolution today that it is impossible to buy sweater made locally, maximum just socks which made by old women. This can be also the only way to save native culture, many villages today disappearing because of demographics and we are losing very unique knitting techniques every year, in some places like only rare individuals left who can knit national textile items by special ancient technique, this is very sad situation.</p>
<p>You really inspired me to build my own knitting machine too- thanks heaps and great work with simplicity of design!</p>
<p>Amazing achievement. Is this machine capable of doing slip and tuck stitches or is it limited to plain knit stitches. Is the server motor used just for needle selection or is it used to form the full stitch</p>
<p>Pretty cool and i love it! But i have a question that dose it have a software controller on PC or just run it directly on arduino?</p>
<p>It's interesting...but using knitting machine parts to make a knitting machine seems a bit like cheating. Given that you can already be &quot;Designing, producing and wearing clothes......in the very same place...make decisions regarding creativity and responsibility&quot; using just a pair of knitting needles and yarn this seems like overengineering. Fun but unnecessary.</p>
<p>What is your alternative ?</p>
<p>why not ? everything in automation is about using parts you dont made yourself.</p><p>you wont build your own transistors or motors but still you use them to make something new.</p><p>i think this project is awesome, the parts of a knitting machine wont do anything if you dont know how to build an interface that reads bitmaps and knits them</p>
<p>If you are doing something simple, then sure. However, the complexity, detail, and speed of knits that you can make with a knitting machine will far exceed what you are able to do by hand. I did a knitted tapestry a couple years ago and at 280,000 and change stitches it would have taken you the better part of a year to complete by hand. That is also assuming you were able to keep really really good track of your stitch counts. Instead of a decade, it took me ~50 hours to complete the creative process and 40ish hours to print (mine had a manual cartridge). I can additionally print any bitmap image immediately only needing to make sure that the width does not exceed my machine capacity. </p><p>The difference between a knitting machine and a hand needles is akin to the difference between a hand file and a 5 axis CNC router. </p>
<p>Sorry if that isn't &quot;positive and constructive&quot; enough. I tried!</p>
Great!!! band thank's forma Your sharing!!!!
<p>I love it!</p>
<p>Awesome!</p>
<p>I won't be making one of these in the near future. But it's a great idea. And I love seeing projects like these. Thanks for sharing!</p>

About This Instructable

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Bio: In hands-on workshops at the Fablab, a hightech workspace, we give youngsters the tools they need for tomorrow's society: art, creativity, entrepreneurship and critical ... More »
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