Monday, August 1, 2011

Interchangable Needle Comparison

Ok, as promised, a comparison of Knit Picks, Addi Clicks Lace and Hiya-Hiya interchangable needle sets. I have one metal set and one wood set from KP, metal from Addi and metal from Hiya-Hiya. And apologies for both the crapitude of the photos and the entirely knitting-related content for my non-knitting readers.

Tips:

Knit Picks tips are by far the sharpest of the three, and they have a great taper. Hiya-Hiya is somewhere in the middle, and Addi, despite their "lace" moniker, are the bluntest, and are, in fact, a bit too blunt for my liking, especially in the smaller sizes. The Hiyas look the bluntest in the photo (for whatever reason), but they feel and knit a lot sharper than the addis (having worked with both needles on the same project, with the same yarn now).

From left: Knit Picks, Addi & Hiya-Hiya

From left: Knit Picks, Addi, Hiya-Hiya

Joins:

Knit Picks and Hiya-Hiya have excellent joins between the cable and the needle. Very smooth and hardly noticeable at all. Addi has a very bumpy join, which is absolutely impossible to deal with on anything smaller than a fingering/sock weight yarn.

From left: KP, Addi, Hiya

Addi

Addi (you can actually see the bumpy join there)

Hiya

Hiya

KP

KP

Ease of joining:

KP is definitely the most difficult and it involves a little key thingy (or a paper clip in a pinch) to fully tighten the cable into the base of the needle. This annoyed me, so I got the Addis, which just click on (hence the name, Addi Click). However, the join sucks. Subsequently, I got the Hiyas, which are awesome, and can be screwed in by hand, or using a teeny little silicone gripping pad for extra tightness. (that sounded wrong somehow).

Cable Flexibility:

All of the cables seemed to have similar levels of flexibility to me. I really didn't notice a difference.

Finish:

They all have pretty slick finishes. However, for whatever reason, the finish on the KP needles wears off (including the finish on the ferrules) making the metal needles and the metal base on the wooden needles extremely sticky. Which infuriates me. I sent back two pairs of needles to KP, and they replaced them without question, but the same exact thing happened again, and I was annoyed. KP has truly excellent customer service, but I'm getting tired of sending their products back over and over again (more on this later).

Cases:

I think the winner is clear (Hiya). But this one is totally subjective, I know. Not that the rest of my review isn't, but at least I have something other than opinion to back it up.








Needle Size Range:

I think KP has the best range for purchase overall: US 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 10.5 and 11
Addi: US 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, and 11
Hiya: US 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 and another set (purchased separately) US 9 10 11 12 13 14 15


Price Point:

Addi: Approx US $169
KP: US $69.99
Hiya: Approx US $70

Other Considerations:

KP has a great price and a decent product. I have had some problems with the cables pulling free of the ferrules in the middle of the project:


I am excited to see how the Hiya Hiya's wear, as I've now knitted almost an entire project with them (Breezy, almost done) and so far so good!

The Addis are really amazing in terms of the convenience of just snapping the cables into the needle, but are vastly better for thicker yarns.

All in all, I probably wouldn't buy another set of Addis. I feel like they are far too expensive to have such crappy joins.

 I have had to replace numerous cables on the KP set, and as noted above, have issues with the finish deteriorating on the metal parts of the needles. However, they are a great value, have an extensive range of sizes for purchase outside of the set, and excellent customer service.

The Hiyas are definitely too new to tell, but I'm liking them initially. Great price point, interesting size range, so far so good on the cables.

And that is that. I am now off on vacation (going to Virginia - the state). I may be blogging from my phone, but those posts will likely be very text light.

I am also nearly done with the Breezy, so hopefully will have photos of it very soon.

9 comments:

  1. Interesting reading Virginia. I have none of them, hense to problems you have described for KP and Addi. Too expensive I think for not perfect goods. Hiya I have never heard about (blush) but now I know what to purchase if I have money left over in the future :-) Enjoy your vacation! You need to scroll in my blog when you are back so you can see photos from Geiranger :-)

    ReplyDelete
  2. Have a nice trip!
    You have done an amazing work comparing those sets, this is an incredible post, I will save it so that I can re-read it when needed. Thank you, it must have been a hell of a work write all that down.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Hi there! Love the needle comparison...I've never seen a Hiya needle in person, but I have some of both of the other brands, so this really helps me decide if I need to try them (maybe not).

    ReplyDelete
  4. have a great trip! (i use the denise interchangeables...do i hear boos from the crowd? i know they are despised by many, but they have never failed me.)

    ReplyDelete
  5. This is such an informative post. Thanks so much. I always thought Addi was just "it" and it was interesting to read your findings. I have always bought hiya hiya bamboo needles and have really liked them. Thanks!

    ReplyDelete
  6. Thanks!

    I don't have any interchangeables, so this was fascinating. I love the Hiya case.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Thanks for the great review! I'm using KP at the moment and have had two different sets of needles come free from their metal base. I put a drop of superglue in the base and have had no problems since. My KP cable is really stiff and gets in the way when I knit magic loop. Were the hiya hiya cables any better?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Franklin,

      Yes, the Hiya hiya cables are softer, and much easier to magic loop with than the KP.

      Two and a half years on, I'm pretty much using the Hiya exclusively, although I still have two sets of KP for backup. The only problem that I have with the Hiya is that the cables sometimes bend a little at the join with the metal base and can cut into my hand (I haven't had any issues with it snagging on yarn or cutting into the yarn.

      I guess I should write an update post. :)

      -v

      Delete