I have been using Knitpicks nickel-plated options needles to knit the sleeves for a sweater. I found that it was taking ages. This is partially due to the fact that I only had a very long cord or a very short one available. I was thus either pulling what seemed like miles of cord around a very small diameter or was struggle with a short cord. When I switched to the shorter cord, I found that I had the opposiet problem. I also found that my gauge when knitting the sleeves appeared much tighter than the guage for the rest of the fabric. After much frustration with this, I switched to two circular needles. I am using one Knitpicks harmony needle and one Knitpicks nickelplated needle. I have done this for only two rows and I already perceive a change in guage. My knitting appears looser. Is this possible? I know that guage could differ when working with needles from two different companies (this happened once when I switched from using bamboo double-points to using knitpicks nickelplated circular needles for knitting in the round), but did not know that it would be possible for using needles from the same company. I am thinking that it might be because I have changed from magic loop to two circular needles. Has anyone heard of this happening before? Is there a remedy for this?
Any little change in tools, or technique can produce a change in gauge. You can keep changing needles until you find some that give the same gauge you were getting, or try to adjust your knitting (which is not a good thing to have to do and hard to maintain the right gauge even if you do manage to find it). I struggle with gauge all the time and feel for you.