The knitting machine is a Singer Magic Memory KE-1200. Do not be put off by the weird pink colour… this machine is fun and a bit complicated!
It has a standard needle bed with 200 needles. 2-colour patterns etc can be obtained using the punched cards or using the buttons below where the punched cards are fed in. Patterns can be a maximum of a 12-stitch wide repeat.
The machine is not yet working perfectly OK. It is working well enough to knit something in a plain colour, or stripes (so long as you have the right tension settings for your yarn). It is not yet working properly when knitting patterns using the punched cards or buttons.
All of the following yarns are in the drawer of knitting machine accessories (3rd drawer down under the Wera screwdrivers):
There are still errors in needle selection occurring when using either punched card or selection buttons. When moving pins by hand on the bed, errors do not occur (i.e. it's not the carriage at fault). The solenoids engage correctly so it's not likely to be them either. Most likely is the the 12 plates that run along the back of the needle bed (that push pins forward via a raised tab) are sticking together when they lift up and push the pins forward. Some lubricant has been applied to see if this will help prevent the sticking. Failing that it might be a question of disassembling this part of the machine and cleaning it.
Also the sponge bar will need glued down at some point.
It would be nice to be rid of the 12 stitch repeat constraint and instead have every needle individually controllable. This would require hacking, perhaps (servos, cams?). Ideas are welcome. It is possible to buy electronic knitting machines that bypass this constraint and are known to be hackable, but these are 100s of £££ (although if people fancied a pledge…).