Metal Knitting Needles – Your Complete Guide

Metal Knitting Needles are popular due to their slick surface. The smoothness makes yarn slide easily, speeding up knitting. Find more benefits of metal needles and the best available.

My Complete Guide To Metal Needles For Knitting

Note: If you click a link on this page and make a purchase, I may receive a commission, but at no extra cost to you. Learn More.

They’re more durable at smaller diameters than wooden needles. Metal makes knitting a smoother, less frustrating experience.

I love knitting on metal needles, particularly stainless steel. I’m not a super fast knitter but when using these types of needles I gain a little speed.

Table Of Contents

Benefits & Disadvantages Of Metal Needles

One thing I love is you often have an extra choice of whether or not you want a sharp tip. Sharp points are fabulous for complicated stitches or multiple-stitch decreases.

Metal is also more robust than some other materials. It carries the weight of large, cumbersome projects without bending or breaking. 

Often pricier than wood needles, opt to purchase these on sale or when there are special offers and deals.

If you’re someone who pushes the tip of your needle like me, be aware you’ll get poked. With complicated knitting pattern project, you’ll soon feel the affects of pushing the tip too often!

The smooth surface is advantageous, but in general, these are inflexible, and some knitters find that they can cause hand fatigue. 

I wouldn’t recommend a pair of these for beginners as the slick surface takes some getting use to. It is easier for stitches to slide off the end. A needle type material like bamboo has more grab.

What Are Metal Knitting Needles Made Out Of?

There are several metals used:

  • Aluminum (including powder coated)
  • Brass
  • Surgical grade stainless steel
  • Nickel

Powder-coated aluminum and brass are the least slick, stainless steel is in the middle, and nickel-coated surfaces are the slickest and fastest of them all.  

Prices vary depending on each brand.

Metal Circular Knitting Needles

ChiaoGoo Knitting Needles

ChiaGoo Circular Knitting Needles

Chiaogoo is a favorite brand of metal fixed circular knitting needles. They have a fantastic range. I’ve knitted socks (see this post on my Instagram account) using the magic loop method and a wool shawl using these needles.

Worsted and DK yarns knit up a little quicker with steel circular needles. I find that the slightly thicker yarn weight works so well on the smooth surface of metal.

They are lightweight, the no memory cable is excellent, and with a smooth surface. The tips are sharp but not super pointy. These stainless steel knitting tip circulars have a red nylon cord with a smooth join between the tip and cable. 

A vast range of sizes are available. The circular lengths available are 16″ (40 cm), 24″ (60 cm), 32″ (80 cm), 40″ (100 cm), 47″ (120 cm) and 60″ (150 cm).

Chiaogoo has an extensive range of metal circular and interchangeable needles, read more in my guide here. They are favorites among knitters.


  • Smooth join between nylon cables and needle
  • Slick surface 
  • Long tapered sharp points
  • Even larger diameter steel knitting needles like US17/12mma are lightweight
  • Excellent for garment patterns as they speed up your knitting
  • Affordable
  • Perfect for in the round projects


  • If you push needles with your index finger, you might find the points uncomfortable. Use a sewing thimble to protect your finger.
Check Price On Amazon

Addi Turbo & Addi Turbo Rocket

addi Circular Turbo Rocket Lace Skacel Blue Cord 32 inch (80cm) Size US 06 (4.0mm)

There are two types, the original and the Rocket variety. Rockets have more pointed tips, designed for more detailed and precision knitting.

Key Features

  • Both varieties are metal, plated in white bronze and brass for the tips.
  •  The cords are nylon, flexible, reliable and designed not to kink or coil
  •  Smooth connections to the tips
  •  Very lightweight 
  •  Smooth, so your yarn slides along
  • This is their most popular type of circular needle. They’re durable, flexible, and well made. 

Cords available 8” 12” 16” 20” 24″ 32″ 40″ 47″ and 60″.

Size needles from 00/ 1.75mm to 15/10mm.

For even more information about Addi Knitting needles, read my guide.

Check Price On Amazon

Pony Circular Aluminum Needles

Their fixed circular needles are available in 2.75mm – 10.00mm. Cord Lengths Available – 40cm, 60cm, 80cm & 100cm. Needle Tips Are 5″ Long


  • Smooth
  • Perfect for people who knit fast
  • Durable
  • Slightly curved shape to better suit the shape of your hand
  • Comfortable to knit with


  • Not suitable for beginners
  • A bit slippery

I’ve created a guide for the full range of Pony Needles.


ChiaoGoo Red Lace Twist Set

ChiaGoo Red Lace Twist Set

ChiaoGoo sells three types of Red Lace Twist sets.

Small, containing 7 sizes – US 2 (2.75mm), US 3 (3.25mm), US 4 (3.55mm) , US 5 (3.75mm), US 6 (4mm), US 7 (4.5mm), US 8 (5mm.)

Large, containing 6 sizes – US 9 (5.5mm), US 10 (6mm), US 10.5 (6.5mm), US 11 (8mm), US 13 (9mm), and US 15 (10mm).

Finally, the Complete set featured in this article containing 13 sizes overall.

Twist red cables consist of a multi-strand, steel cord coated with red nylon and are memory free, so no kinks!


  • Tips are smooth and fast
  • They have a longer taper than HiyaHiya tips and slightly sharper
  • Variety of nifty tools included
  • Needle tips have a lifeline hole
  • A popular choice for lace knitters.


  • Some knitters don’t like the ‘zing’ sound 
  • Like the Hiya Hiyas, you can’t use the small-sized needle tip cables with the large-sized needle tip cables
Check Price On Amazon

HiyaHiya Sharp 5″ Interchangeables

HiyaHiya Sharp 5


  • Needle Sizes Included – (2 US / 2.75 mm – 15 US / 10 mm )
  • Cord Lengths Included – 4 cables (18″, 26″, 34″, 42″)
  • Hiya Hiya Sharps Tips Are 5″ Long
  • Made From – High-quality stainless steel
  • Also included – Small Cable Connectors Tip Adapter, Small and Large Panda Stoppers, Small and Large Single Point Adapters, Puppy Snip, Darn Its, Knitters Safety Pins, Interchangeable Case Assorted fabric cases and Rubber Grips


  • Super sharp tapered points
  • Flexible swivel cables
  • The yarn glides over the surface


  • Some users found the screw connection loosened. I’d recommend tightening the screw join before starting your knitting.
Click to Learn More / Buy from Amazon

Nova Platina Interchangeable Circular Needles

Nova Platina Interchangeable Circular Needles

Engineered from hollow brass pipes and plated with chrome. They have pointed and tapered tips. Ideal for lace and other knitting projects.

The smooth and shiny surface enables your work to move quickly. An easy to connect cord with a smooth join allows no snagging.

Resilient and flexible cords lay flat with no kink or twist. The material is hard-wearing and long-lasting. Excellent for all levels of knitting experience.

Sizes in this set – US 2.5 (3.0mm), 3 (3.25mm), 4 (3.5mm), 5 (3.75mm), 6 (4.0mm), 7 (4.5mm), 8 (5.0mm), 9 (5.5mm), 10 (6.0mm), 10.5 (6.5mm), 10.75 (7.0mm), 11 (8.0mm), 13 (9.0mm), 15 (10.0mm) and 17 (12.0mm)


  • Nice sharp tips
  • Slippery, but not too much


  • Some users found that the chrome finish wore off after a while
Click to Learn More / Buy from Amazon

Double Pointed Knitting Needles

Knitter’s Pride Zing Double Pointed Needles

Knitter's Pride Zing Double Pointed Needles

When I tested these lightweight metal needles, I was pleasantly surprised with how light and comfortable they felt in my hands. The superior grade aluminum is easy to knit with and I found the “zing” sound when they move over each other, pleasant.

Available in lengths of 6″ and 8″ and sizes are US 0 (2.0mm) – to US 11 (8.0mm). Each size has a different bright color for easy identification.

Points are silver with a slightly blunter tip. The shafts are different colors. I have a helpful guide to all the excellent Knitter’s Pride Needles. (Known as Knit Pro outside North America)


  • Don’t make that metal rubbing sound when in use.
  • Just enough slip to let yarn flow smoothly, but enough grip to not lose stitches.


  • Some knitters found the points a little blunt for socks or intricate lacework.
  • Shipping options might take a while depending where you live
Click to Learn More / Buy from Amazon

Questions From Readers

How Do You Sharpen A Metal Knitting Needle?

I wouldn’t recommend doing the sharpening of your metal knitting needles yourself. Videos online show people smoothing down the points with a small buffer on an electric drill.

Not sure about you, but that’s not something I have around the house.  

How To Get Kinks Out Of Metal Corded Circular Knitting Needles 

As most metal cords are covered in another material such as nylon or plastic, you can dip the cable in some hot water for a couple of minutes. This process should even out the kinks. Be careful not to place the needle tips in the water. 

How Can You Make Metal Knitting Needles Slippery?  

Tech Knitter recommends putting on clean rubber dishwashing gloves and massage the needles a little.

Then drag each needle between your pinched thumb and forefinger – no water, pull the needles between the pinched, dry glove.

What Metal Are Knitting Needles Made Of?

They can be made of aluminum, brass, nickel and stainless steel.

People who are sensitive or allergic to heavy metal like nickel are best to avoid any needles containing this material.

If you also like to crochet, aluminum crochet hooks are great for beginner. Susan Bates and Boye are popular brands. A steel crochet needle is used for thread. They are also a super useful tool to help pick up dropped stitches in knitting.

Hopefully this helped you discover some of the best metal knitting needles available. Recommended for their smooth surface and often sharp points, perfect for speedy knitting. Knit faster and with more intricate designs without fear of splitting the yarn accidentally.

Pin Now To Save For Later

My Complete Guide To Metal Needles For Knitting Pin

About The Author

Jodie Morgan From Knit Like Granny

Jodie Morgan - (Author and Founder)
Lives In: Chiang Mai, Thailand

Author: Jodie Morgan is a passionate knitter and blogger with 40+ years of experience currently living in Chiang Mai, Thailand. Taught by her mother and wonderful grandmother “Mama”, she fell in love with crafting from a young age. When she’s not knitting, you’ll find her enjoying a cup of coffee with cream, or sharing helpful resources and tips with the online knitting community. Please say hello, or see what she's making on Ravelry.

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.