February 26th, 2013

Tuesday’s Knitting Tip – How to Fix Curly Circular Needle Cords

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Sometimes when you start using brand new circular needles, the cords can be a little unruly. They can get very curly and twisted from being in the packaging, which makes it hard to keep your project flat and can be frustrating to work with.

All you need to remedy this is some warm water. You want the water to be hot, but not boiling. I use my teakettle on the stove and wait until I see some steam, but warming up even just a mug of water in the microwave would work too. Dip the cords into the water for a few seconds, then stretch out the needles and give a gentle tug. ┬áThe warm water will relax the plastic enough to release the curl. Only do a few seconds at a time! You don’t want to accidentally melt your cords.

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Grace

Customer Service Liaison at WEBS - America's Yarn Store
I started working at WEBS in September 2010. I learned how to knit 5 years ago and have been crocheting since childhood. When I'm not knitting, I love to be outside with my Black Lab, Ellie.
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  • http://www.facebook.com/tigerwhispers Heather Kaup

    You can also leave them hanging over something with the weight of the needles to pull them down. Though your way is quicker, I have more luck with mine.

  • http://twitter.com/carriejayknit Carrie Jackson

    Thank you! I have been wondering if warm water would relax the curl but had been timid to try. It is on now, curly circulars!

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1277204672 Barbara Harris Morgan

    It doesn’t always work. I have really cheap needles that I got off eBay that won’t relax at all. Got what I paid for.

  • A7dk

    I have done with with Knitpicks cables. It works well, but I have to dip and straighten several times before the curl really comes out.

  • Cheryl

    Great tip – thanks so much!!

  • http://www.facebook.com/TereeB Teree Beach

    I have steamed mine with my iron. I stretch the cord out and place a small hand towel over it and then press.

  • ggmmcn361

    Yep, that’s what I do. It’s better than having to cook water in a pot and avoiding getting the bamboo needles wet.

  • Mary Miraglia

    I never use circular needles, I hate them. 35 years ago when they were new and cutting edge I did, but now I always use bamboo DPN’s,so much more pleasant to work with. And versatile, too.

  • http://www.facebook.com/nancy.lemkebush Nancy Lemke-Bush

    I have also used a hair dryer

  • Jennie

    Great tips . Thanks

  • Cindy

    I just run the tap water until it’s hot and hold the needles apart while running the warm water on the cord. It works, no danger of meting the cord with too hot water and I’m ready to go in a shorter time than it takes to heat the water on the stove.

  • Aunt Sue

    Please do not use that pot on the stove. It is not stove top safe, and is liable to shatter into glass shards.

  • Kathy Shough

    I always use my hair dryer and the cord relaxes quite quickly.

  • Nancy

    Try sitting on them for a while. No danger of melting here. Your cords need to be relaxed not straight. Of course, store them flat.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Danelle-OH/100002942194834 Danelle OH

    I’m pretty sure that actually is a stove top proof pot. I had a similar vintage corningware pot and it was fine for the stove top (just not in the micro or oven)…Otherwise, great tips!

  • Sandy Walker

    I use my hair dryer…works great!

  • knitwit

    I use a plastic skirt hanger, the kind w/ a clip at each end. . . i clip all my circular needles stretched out between the 2 clips, and hang it in the closet of my craft room. No need to “unkink” them when I’m ready to knit!

  • Amy W

    what do I do if I bought knitting needles the right size – but the wrong length. In other words too long?