Industrial knitting machines have been around a long time. Their monstrous size and exorbitant price tags, however, ensure they belong solely inside factories and high-scale production workshops. With more fabrication machines now making their way into home workshops, Kniterate wants to do the same for electronic knitting rigs.
That’s right, you can now add a knitting machine to the tabletop-sized 3D printer, CNC machine, and laser cutter in your workshop. And, yes, it can knit finished garments and accessories from scratch, allowing you to crank out your own ugly Christmas sweaters, beanies, and all sorts of knitted items.
Kniterate isn’t exactly small at 49 x 25 x 24 inches (width x height x depth), but it is reasonably compact enough to place on top of a desk. It comes with a 29-inch wide knitting area, so it should be able to produce most any conventional size of sweater, with a seven-gauge needle bed holding 408 needles allowing it to knit at a rate of about a foot per second. To start, simply launch the Kniterate app where you can choose a design and adjust the dimensions, as well as upload your own patterns. From there, you just hook up the machine to the computer and get the production running.
Features include a motor-driven rocking system, a full safety cover that suppresses noise and keeps dust out, a small LCD panel for accessing the menu, and an SD card slot in case you’d rather just load the design (instead of hooking up to a PC). Do note, the darn thing weighs a whopping 287 pounds, so you’re going to want to have a friend around when setting it up.
A Kickstarter campaign is currently running for Kniterate. You can reserve a unit for pledges starting at $4,499.