How to Knit Socks on a Circular Knitting Machine

How to Knit Socks on a Circular Knitting Machine

These Sentro knit socks on a circular knitting machine are so quick and easy to make! Simple tubes of worsted weight yarn make great boot socks or bed socks, and they don’t take a lot of time to make.

Why Knit Socks on a Circular Knitting Machine?

Lots of knitters love to make and wear knit socks, but they are a relatively time-consuming project. Even using heavier weight yarn like we are here, it’s still a pretty big time commitment — not that that’s a bad thing! But sometimes you want to finish a project fast. These socks can be knit in an afternoon (I know because I did it) and can keep your feet cozy the same day.

And if you don’t know how to knit with needles, or you’re intimidated by the fiddly bits of socks, learning how to knit socks on a Sentro or other circular knitting machine is a great place to start. Because these are just tubes, all you have to do is finish the top and bottom and you’ll have a cozy pair of socks in no time.

I even challenged myself to just use the tools that come with a circular knitting machine. We use the circular knitting needle just to hold stitches, and the crochet hook to finish the top edge of the sock.

Supplies

To knit this pair of socks I used a little less than a skein of Lion Brand Heartland yarn in Black Canyon Tweed. This is a medium/worsted/weight 4 yarn, and it was super easy to work with in my machine. I definitely need to add it to my list of best yarns for the Sentro!

You’ll also need a Sentro 22 pin circular knitting machine, or an Addi Express 22 pin machine.

I have the Sentro and also used the sample yarn (as waste yarn), yarn needle, circular knitting needle and crochet hook that came with it on this project. You can use any similar supplies you have on hand to complete the project.

Gauge and Size

I used the loose gauge setting on my machine because it was necessary to feed the tweed yarn I used (otherwise the little flecks of color got stuck in the feed).

My sock is about 19 inches or 48 cm long, and 8 inches/20 cm around, and it gives me a comfortable but not too snug fit. I wear a woman’s size 8 US shoe (that’s a UK 6 or a European 38). I feel like these could fit a range of teen to medium adult feet.

How to Knit a Sock on a Circular Knitting Machine

My Sentro knit socks are super simple to make, and the one I photographed took exactly 41 minutes, including the time it took to stop and take pictures as I went.

To begin, take a length of waste yarn and take it in front of the first hook and behind the second, alternating around each hook until you get back to the beginning.

Work three rounds in waste yarn.

Leave a long (at least a yard/91.5 cm) tail of your working yarn to finish the top and begin working with your chosen yarn, feeding through the loosest tension setting.

Crank out 105 rounds, or fewer if you want a shorter sock.

Cut the yarn, leaving a long tail. Thread the tail onto your yarn needle and pick up all the stitches from the machine.

Finishing the Sentro Knit Sock

Pull the yarn to tighten the stitches, but stop when they stack up flat on top of each other as shown. You don’t want to pull it as tight as you can.

Use the yarn end to sew through the stitches again across the toe.

I also turned the sock inside out and stitched back across to add a little more durability. Weave in the end and trim any excess yarn.

Turn the sock right side out again and use the circular knitting needle to pick up the right leg of each stitch in the first round you worked with your sock yarn.

Pull out the waste yarn.

Arrange the stitches on the needle so that the first stitch is at the end of the needle. You can use the cable to hold the stitches for the back of the leg and move them around as you work.

Take your crochet hook into the first stitch.

Using the yarn tail, yarn over and pull through a loop. Take the stitch off the knitting needle.

Go into the next stitch, yarn over and pull up a loop. Take the stitch off the knitting needle. You now have two stitches on the hook.

Yarn over and pull through both loops on the crochet hook. You’ve now bound off one stitch.

Continue in this manner until no stitches remain on the knitting needles. This is basically single crochet just working with live stitches.

Pull the yarn through the last stitch. Make sure you can get the sock on comfortably before you weave in the end. You can always pull out those stitches and bind off more loosely if needed.

To finish the top, stick your needle under the legs of the first bound off stitch.

Take the needle back through the center of the last bound off stitch and pull through. Weave in the yarn end and trim as needed.

Field Testing Circular Knitting Machine Socks

I was actually a little surprised at how comfortable these Sentro knit socks were. They held onto my leg really well without bunching or scooting around, even though they don’t have ribbing (we’ll have a ribbed version soon!).

I wore them around the house without shoes, on a walk with my tennis shoes on, and to bed. They did bunch a little overnight but most knit socks will do that. They kept me cozy during a spring cold snap and I will definitely be knitting more of them and experimenting with different yarn weights soon.

Have you ever made socks on a circular knitting machine? I’d love to hear about your experience, favorite yarns, finishing techniques, etc.

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