MK Troubleshooting tips

Problem Cause Remedy
Loops at
the side of the knitting
Tension mast too loose/ tension
wire springs back too high
Tighten the tension mast until
the yarn is just gripped
Carriage going too far past the
end of the knitting
Stop when you hear the “click”
Loops at
the side of the knitting with very fine yarns
Tension mast too loose (even if
already at maximum)
Try wrapping the yarn around the
tension mast again to increase the tension
stitches are pulling tight or unknitting
Tension mast too tight/ tension
wire pulling down towards carriage
Loosen the tension mast until
the yarn is just gripped (towards the minus sign on Japanese machines)
Taking carriage too far away
from edge of knitting
Stop carriage movement
immediately after hearing "click" at end of row; approximately
1-2" from the edge of the knitting
Yarn wound too tight Check if yarn comes up from the
ball freely; if not, wind the yarn again
dropping in same places every time
Damaged needle Replace needle
dropping in random places
Flat needle retainer bar Replace needle retainer bar with
a new one.
dropped at side
Taking carriage too far Stop carriage movement
immediately after hearing "click" at end of row
Tension too tight or too loose Set correct tension for yarn
Faulty needle Replace needle
dropped in centre
Latch brushes worn Replace brushes
Faulty needle Check latch movement and
straightness of needle. Replace needle if necessary.
stripping from machine
Badly seated carriage/sinker
Check and reseat
“tucking” in same places every time ie loops building up in needles
Damaged needle – latch not
closing properly
Replace needle
jams (Japanese machines)
Yarn caught in sinker plate Remove sinker plate, release
carriage and carefully disentangle
Random needles catching in
sinker plate – too much “bounce”
Replace needle retainer bar
Foreign body in sinker plate Sinker plates have magnets –
check for lost tools!
Yarn not feeding in correctly Check the path of the wool from
the ball through the yarn tension unit.
Needles or needle latches bent Replace bent needles
Needle butts were not all in a
straight line
Take carriage back to the side
and unravel row, reset needles
Knot in yarn caught in yarn
Ease knit through yarn feeder
using transfer tool (knit carefully on next row, knot should knit fine, you
might want to tease any ends onto the wrong side of the knitting)
Insufficient lubrication Oil sides of cams and nylon
runners beneath carriage
Flat sponge bar Replace sponge bar
jams (Passap)
Not enough pressure on knitting
(using orange strippers)
Remove locks and strippers
carefully, and then use blue strippers. Possibly could add weights
Orange stripper – black part has
Use a fine sandpaper and smooth
down any rough bits OR replace stripper
or screeching noise when moving carriage – sometimes worse in one direction.
Carriage can also jam
Static/fluff build up Clean underside of carriage and
bed surface with a brush, apply a small amount of oil to back rail on bed and
to hinges on underside of carriage. This happens more with fluffy and
handknitting (not oiled/waxed) yarns. Try running them over a white non-scented
candle when winding into a ball. You might also try hydrating the yarn
overnight in the freezer or lightly dampening it with a spray bottle of
water. Other suggestions: wipe the machine bed with a dryer sheet, earth it
with a thin metal wire (I use a scourer), get a humidifier for the knitting
Fragile/dried yarn Rehydrate by leaving in the
freezer overnight, in a plastic bag
Tension too tight Loosen the tension (especially
if using the ribber) ie a large number
Poor quality yarn Use a better quality yarn, or
wax it when winding
Knots in wool becoming untied Use reef knot or weaver's knot
Black stripper – black wheel has
Orange stripper – metal blade is
Replace blade or entire stripper
Black stripper – blade damage Replace blade or entire stripper
get consistent tension results on a well-used machine
Build up of yarn fuzz in tension
Disassemble and de-fuzz tension
Tension wires failure (metal
Wires have lost their spring –
replace or swap if possible
builds up on gate pegs (Japanese machines only)
Not enough weight Add more weight
yarn builds up on gatepegs (Japanese machines only)
Mohair and similar yarns catch
on gatepegs
Pull the knitting downwards
every few rows
patterning (Japanese punchcards)
Dirt in punchcard slot Vacuum the slot
Faulty pattern selection drum Requires professional repair
Patterning over only parts of
New sponge bar recommended
patterning (Japanese electronics)
Dirt in mylar sheet reader Vacuum the slot
Dirty mylar sheet Clean the sheet
Badly-marked mylar sheet Go over the markings – these
machines can be fussy!
Yarn not feeding in correctly Check the path of yarn and check
if ball is not wound too tight
Sinker plate unit loose Loosen the thumb screws. Push
the unit all the way back towards the carriage until it locks in. Tighten
both thumb screws.
Yarn uneven or knotted Check yarn quality