Last night I was knitting away merrily on my 970, making a scarf for a friend. All of a sudden, the carriage froze to the needle bed---almost as if someone had soldered it to the bed. My heart practically sank to the ground. No kidding. No matter what combination of buttons I pushed, that carriage was not going to move. I had 407 rows knit out of 650, fairisle, lots of hand wrapping of long floats. Bah. I did manage to get the scarf off the bed by lifting stitches off the hooks that were frozen in time. Called a friend to see if she would go with me to St. Peter, to Knit and Sew World, to see if Shawn could repair it. She said she would and even called Amanda at her home (Amanda works there) to let her know we were coming in the morning.
It's about a 1 1/2 hour drive (on a clear summer's day) from my house to St. Peter. Miserably cold today with lots of arctic wind, below zero temps. I had some thoughts about maybe this was a foolish thing to do, to drive in this weather, but machine knitters are stubborn, doncha know. I met my friend a half hour from my house and we continued on together. The drive was slow, but not as bad as it could have been. A few cars were in the ditch on both sides of the road. We made it safely.
Shawn dropped what he was doing and worked on my machine for a good 3 1/2 hours. He replaced the timing belt (the cause of things not moving), did a general tune up, blew out mounds of fluff from the inner sanctum, replaced a few doohickys that weren't functioning optimally, cleaned and shined it up and gave it a new coat of oil. My CB1 had a stubborn #1 on its keyboard so I was either avoiding patterns with the number 1 or pressing that button long and hard. He fixed that too. He said my timing belt was getting close to cutting some wires for the electronics and it was good this happened when it did or the repair would have been much more extensive. For all he did, the bill was very reasonable. I would recommend him to anyone. He has tons of Brother and Silver Reed parts and knows both machine brands inside and out. They ship parts all over the world. He even repairs and advises Karen Allen with her mk business. (Karen -the actress in Indiana Jones series who also machine knits.)
Here's the address of Knit and Sew World's website:
When you click on the Knitting Machine tab, you'll find an informative article about a recommended routine for oiling your machine.
Anyway, I'm a very happy camper. Now I just need to unravel some rows and get that scarf rehung on the machine. I have a deadline to meet. Doesn't every machine knitter do gifts at the last minute???