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Addi Turbo Needles

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Addi Turbo circular needles

Knitted swatches made with Addi Turbo needles and Denise interchangeables.

Sarah White

Knit Faster with Addi Turbos?:

Made in Germany, Addi Tubro knitting needles are sleek, incredibly lightweight and said to be some of the fastest needles around. Their packaging proclaims: "Knit faster with the amazing Addi Turbo, the fast needle with the natural touch."

Thee needles are smooth, light and fun to use, but can they really help you knit faster? I set out to find out, and you can judge for yourself.

Turbo Construction:

Addi Turbos are designed for speed. The tips are made of nickel-plated brass, making them a cool, shiny sliver, very lightweight but durable, and tarnish, rust and discoloration resistant.

The needles have a soft, snag-free cord that makes it very easy to knit quickly and slide your knitting around on the needle smoothly.

What's more, these needles are also extremely quiet, so if you want to knit in a movie theater or a library, you won't bother anyone.

Time Trials:

But can these needles really knit faster than other needles? I decided to find out by knitting two sample swatches using the same sized needles (7 US circulars), the same yarn and the same number of stitches and rows (12 each) in plain old garter stitch.

I knit my one sample with the Addi Turbo needles, another with a pair of tried-and-true Denise interchangeables, my favorite go-to needle.

I didn't count the time for casting on, but I did count knitting and binding off. I used my kitchen timer to keep score.

Test One:

The first test, using Jo Sharp Desert Garden Aran Cotton, was far from conclusive. The Addis completed the task in 8 minutes, 22 seconds, while the Denise needles were done in 8 minutes even. I call this inconclusive because the yarn was giving me trouble.

It may just be the ball that I was using, but the tension within the ball was very strange and it kept winding up on itself, necessitating frequent adjustments as I knitted. It was much more of a problem with the Addi swatch, but it happened with both of them.

I decided another test was in order with some more well-behaved yarn.

Test Two:

For the second test I knitted with Lion Brand BabySoft.

This time I also tried to knit fast, as much as it is possible to will yourself to knit more quickly than is natural.

This time the Denise needles clocked in at 7 minutes, 25 seconds, and the Addis at 7 minutes, 23 seconds. A dead heat.

I guess this means there is very little difference in knitting with "turbo" needles versus regular needles. But the comfort level when using the Addi Turbos is very high. They feel almost weightless (until you add yarn, anyway) and you at least feel like you're knitting faster when you use them, even if it's not really true.

More About Addi Turbos:

Addi Turbo needles (distributed in the United States by Skacel) come in eight lengths:

  • 12 inch
  • 16 inch
  • 20 inch
  • 24 inch
  • 32 inch
  • 40 inch
  • 47 inch
  • 60 inch

They range in size from US 000 to 19. Addi Turbo needles are also available in straight form, and Addi also sells aluminum and bamboo needles, double-pointed needles and crochet hooks, as well as other accessories.

Addi Turbo needles and other Addi products are available at many high-end knitting stores nationwide. You can also buy them online.

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