There are numerous types of knitting machines, ranging from simple spool or board templates with no moving knitting in plain english pdf to highly complex mechanisms controlled by electronics. All, however, produce various types of knitted fabrics, usually either flat or tubular, and of varying degrees of complexity. This basic process can still be recognised in all machines, but it has been refined as new technologies have become available.
Advertisement for a late 19th-century hosiery firm that depicts its factory floor with workers using knitting machines. A few simple devices permit knitting without needles for toy or hobby purposes. A needle or special tool is then used to transfer the loops of yarn from around the pins, either off the pins or to other pins, to produce the knitting. Knitting boards can produce complex designs. Other semi-mechanical knitting devices are available. To produce larger and more complex knitted items, such as garments, domestic and industrial machines, with either flat or circular beds, producing rectangular or tubular fabrics, respectively, are needed.
A carriage or cam box is passed across the bed of needles causing the needle movements required to produce each next stitch. By means of various selection methods, e. Needles can be placed in holding position to allow short row shaping. In the most modern machines, punchcards have been replaced by computer control. Plating refers to knitting with two strands of yarn that are held in such a way that one is in front of the other. Plated effects can be particularly striking in a ribbed fabric.