Easy Knitting Machine Weights

Introduction: Easy Knitting Machine Weights

Make your own knitting machine weights from junk....

For this project I used.....

Spent undamaged batteries
Wire from a bit of spare mains flex( paper clips would do)
Gaffer tape

Wire snippers

I have been playing with my new knitting machine since Christmas.
It sometimes has a problem with keeping the tension of the knitting tight and needs weighting.
Rather than order sets of machine weights which are usually quite pricey, I thought about what I could use instead.

This house has a lot of old batteries laying around.
They should go to the recycle box in the shop but we always forget.
So they seem like a good candidate for some home recycling.
They are quite heavy enough to tension the knitting.

Step 1: The Components

Gather your ingredients or components

You could use any wire so long as you can bend it and it will stay bent.
I used a knife to cut the tape . You could use scissors.
Gaffer tape tears quite easily once you get a rip going .
The tape needs to be a bit flexible so it can squidge up around the wires to hold them firmly.
I have used batteries for my ballast, I think you could use more or less anything that is small enough and heavy enough.
Pebbles would do although it is better to have some uniformity of size and weight if you are going to hang them on the same piece of work as I am.
Pliers or old blunt scissors for bending the hooks.

Step 2: Make the Weights

First cut your wires to length.
Mine are about 2.5 inches long .
I cut two wires for each weight.

Bend over the hooks using your pliers or your blunt scissors.
Try and get the hooks a similar shape.

Cut your length of gaffer tape. I guessed how long to cut by eyeballing.
Lay two hooks at a short edge with the hooks bending towards the non sticky side.
Lay your battery or batteries at right angles to the wires on the same edge so they are stuck to the tape.
Wrap the tape around the battery or batteries so they stay where they are and bend the bottom of the wires around at the same time if they need it by pushing with your fingers.

You are done!

I did 5 double battery weights and 3 single using AA size
I made 1 9 volt weight too .

Step 3: In Use

Hang your weights on the knitting as it forms.
You can push the hooks through the same row so they are hanging evenly.
The rounded tops of the hooks are smooth so the yarn shouldn't snag if you take care.
Move the weights up as the work lengthens.

In the picture they are hanging inside the Prym Maxi knitting machine which can knit tubes and flat panels but these would work on any knitting machine and would be handy on a larger flat bed machine when knitting small items like gloves and socks.

1 Person Made This Project!


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5 Discussions


Tip 2 years ago

I didn't have any wire handy, so I unbent some paper clips instead. These are a good idea because they were just the right length and easy to bend with pliers. Also, there are no jagged ends to worry about.


4 years ago

cool idea thanks for sharing ?


Reply 3 years ago

good idea about the fishing weights


6 years ago on Introduction

Good idea to give those old batteries a new purpose! I have an old 200-needle flat-bed knitting machine with ribber (so 400 needles altogether when both beds are in use), and it needs a LOT of weights evenly distributed across the width. I've been using fishing weights glued onto halves of old disassembled (springs nipped off) "claw" hair clips for small projects, and for wider projects I made some weighted bars by gluing 12" lengths of re-bar to several claw clip halves. The clips hook into the knitted work and distribute the weight evenly over many stitches without snagging or pulling the yarn loops. The re-bar weights work well for big projects, but old batteries seem like a great idea for no-cost, no-landfill weights for machine-knitting smaller, lighter-weight items, instead of buying more fishing weights.

How do you like your Prym Maxi? Can you knit socks on it (about 60 sts around with sock-weight wool), or is it better suited to 4-ply yarn? I like the colors in the yarn you're using in the photos.

Thanks for sharing your idea. Knitting machines are fun!


Reply 3 years ago

wow I never saw the reply at the time of posting.

Sorry not to have replied back!

I love my prym and use it all the time.

It wont knit socks straight off as it is too large a gauge and there are 42 needles IIRC although it can be done if you use real wool and felting..Great idea with the fishing weights..