The Knitshop at Rocking Horse Farm

Circular Sock Knitting Machines ~ also known as Round Sock Machines


Round sock knitting machines (sometimes called CSM's, or Circular Sock Machines) Circular Sock Machines (CSM's) continue to be popular with knitters and fiber artists looking to expand their craft or desiring a new challenge.

Most CSM's were manufactured in the late 1800's and early 1900's. Today they are collectible and there is a national organization of collectors who clean and refurbish the machines and enthusiasts who use the machines for making unique socks and other items.

Some round machines are rare. Some owners of round sock knitting machines are interested mostly because of the fun of owning an antique piece of equipment, rather than actually using them to make large quantities of socks. A proud owner says that she has the original Bill of Sale with her antique round sock machine, and the original sale price was approximately $42. Now she says a similar machine sells on Ebay for almost $1000 regardless of condition.

In the 2000's interest in manufacturing new machines has grown.

A knitter in New Zealand has manufactured new Round Sock Machines similar to vintage Auto Knitter models. They are known as "NZAK" machines (New Zealand Auto Knitter).

Beginning in 2011 a manufacturer in Cape Girardeau, Missouri is making machines similar to the vintage Gearhart machines. The new machines are called Erlbacher Gearhart.

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We have several pattern leaflets written with Circular Sock Machine users in mind:

"Homestead Rug" After cranking out longgggg strips of circular knit fabric, the long tube is cut into strips and used with a wooden frame to make a rug similar to old-fashioned rag rugs. Several tips are mentioned about knitting on a round sock machine. Wooden frame instructions included. $6.00 +s/h

"Crank E. Bear" was named after the "cranky" nickname for round sock machines. This leaflet shows you how to knit rows of in a long tube which are then felted. After the felting process, and wool will stay in the "fulled" state so can be cut to shape for any project, such as this bear. Felting instructions and Template included. $8.00 +s/h

"Felted Moccasins" knit fabric on your Circular Sock Machine and felt it, after it is felted it can be cut into the Moccasin shapes and assembled without any fear of raveling. Includes felting instructions and templates in various children and adult sizes. $8.00 + s/h

"Felted Baby Booties" includes felting instructions and template for cutting pieces. $8.00 + s/h

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Carole has written a book called "SOCK MACHINE EXPERIENCES" with tips for beginners, basic operation, pattern ideas, and lots of black-and-white pictures. Spiral bound, 3rd edition: $20 +s/h

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Instructional CD with pictures, video clips and E-book by Bonnie Smola: $20.00 +s/h.

This is an excellent learning tool but also fun for anyone simply interested in antiques. Bonnie has included a wealth of information about the history of CSM's along with the excellent videos and instructions for operation. There are several sock patterns and advanced techniques included. This CD might be the best CSM resource available! We are really impressed with all the great information packed on this CD.

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Sock Sizers, measuring devices for use with any knitting machine or handknitting: $16.00 +s/h, for set of 2 (mens and ladies). Fred makes these by hand at Rocking Horse Farm using good quality oak wood.


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We host gatherings for Round Sock machine users at our shop several times a year.


Gatherings are a time to bring your machine and learn, adjust, clean, and crank. We begin around 10:00am and can continue til 6:00pm. Lunch is potluck.

Round Sock Machines are also shown at our annual September Seminar.

To receive notification of our next event, join our Email Mailing List/Yahoo Group by using the link below.

Everyone gets "cranky" at Round Sock Machine gatherings.


business hours: Tues-Sat 10-6 CST

Subscribe to MACHINE KNITTING INSPIRATION and receive patterns, techniques, event info, machine & yarn sales, new patterns & software, and much more. Single copy: $4.95 +s/h, or subscribe: 1 year (4 issues) $12.95, or 2 years (8 issues) $19.95. (Canada: 1 year (4 issues) $17.95, 2 years (8 issues) $25.95 (in US funds). Other countries, please inquire.

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Rocking Horse Farm
25636 County Road 74
Saint Cloud, Minnesota USA 56301-9293

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