I purchased a new Hague linker directly from Hague in UK and so far I am very pleased although not everything is ideal. This is the only linker that I ever used so I don’t really have what to compare. My linker with the one with the electronic foot pedal control but the same pros and cons and advice are applicable to a manual machine.
What I did on Hague linker:
- Linked the edges of the scarf knitted on standard knitting machines. As the Hague manual mentions, it is extremely important to get a hang by practicing putting the knitted edge on the linker’s pegs to create a very nice and even seam.
- Linked the open stitches on every and every other needle. I use this technique when I was to create more stretchy edges. Check out my video on those.
- Linked the edges of the scarf knitted on a bulky machine – was very pleased as well
Learn how to put the knitted edge efficiently and evenly on the pegs.
I typically try to put the whole piece on a linker – it helps me to evenly distribute the stitches along the piece length.
- Always knit blank 10-12 stitches at the end to easy take of the linked piece of the machine and to hide the loose ends. By ‘blank’ stitches I mean the thread looping on itself without any underlying fabric.
- Push the fabric placed on pegs as far as possible so it does not slide off.
- Keep even tension between first and second fabric layer when joining them on pegs
Pros and Cons.
(+) The edge is nicer than when sewn by hand
(+) Faster than linking by hand
(+) Easy to see as you knit whether the edge is even or not
(+) the size of the linker is compact enough so I sometimes move the whole machine if for some reason I feel that moving the ring with pegs is not convenient. Or sometimes I move around myself whatever works, right?!?
(+) very well-written instructions and manual.
(+) If the needle breaks, it is easy to replace
(+) Parts are available from the manufacturer.
(-) even though there is a tension mast and a threading mechanism with tension control, I feel the flow of the threading yarn is not even. I tried to wind my thread in a different way and it still catches one in a while. But that’s ok and is easy to get control over.
(-) it does miss stitches once in a while. So the yarn threading, tension, combination of thread and the thickness of the knitted pieces are all important.
(-) Even though replacing a needle is relatively easy, putting it in the absolutely correct position requires trial and error. It is doable, yes! But I had to step away from my Hague linker for a couple of days not to get too frustrated
Pros and cons specifically for an electric linker:
(+) Hands are free – all control over the needle movement and speeds are through the foot pedal.
(+) The electric linker can be used manually as well but not many stitches.
(-) I wish the cord was a bit longer. But I wonder if this is some sort of safety precaution because the cord on my sewing machine is also shorter than I want.
I learned a lot by simply using and experimenting with various techniques. There is still a lot to knit and to link and to learn on Hague linker! Below are some products I finished on Hague!
Since this is the only linker I ever tried I cannot really compare it to anything else rather than sewing the garment pieces by hand and on a sewing machine. Overall I am very pleased and will continue getting a hang of various techniques, including decorative ones, on my Hague linker.