I get my needles from here:http://members.peak.org/~spark/FineFiberNeedles.html#Needles
I don't believe they have a 36star - they do have a 38star which is one of my favorites.
I like the fact that the barbs are always positioned close to the point (which isn't true on all needles). Over the years I have purchased needles from a variety of sources and found that there is a great variety in the quality of needles and placement of barbs.
Star needles have the advantage of having four edges per blade. That's 8 barbs on a star needle as compared to 6 barbs on triangular needles. (but not all needles have 2 barbs per edge)
Belladune - how do you hold your needles?? The further away from the point that you hold your needles increases the possibility that you will break needles.