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#426673 06/14/08 02:30 PM
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Angie Offline OP
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Spinning has always intrigued me. Someone loaned me a very portable pedal type spinning wheel; however, without a mentor, I'm having trouble getting started. The person who owns it is too far away to help. I purchased a video but even that does not have enough up-close pictures to help me get started. I know there is a feel to just how much wool to use. But I just haven't figured out that along with getting it on the spindle.

Any suggestions?

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Can you tell us the make of wheel or send a pic of it? There are many different makes of wheels and we could better help you if we knew exactly which wheel, or at least the type of wheel you have.

As to getting yarn to wind on, it's a matter of setting the wheel tension correctly and remembering to release your grip on the fibers so that the wheel can wind it onto the bobbin.



Llyn - Spinning Editor
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Hi, Llyn. Thanks for responding. It is an Ashford spinning wheel. If you need more information, I will set it up and take a photo and upload for to you to see.

Last edited by Angie; 06/15/08 06:54 PM.
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Hi Angie,

What I really need to know to help you with it is what type of drive system and tensioning device it has. So...does it have a single drive band which goes around the drive wheel (that's the large one) and then around a whorl on the bobbin? Or does it have a drive band which goes around the drive wheel and a separate whorl that is mounted on the flyer shaft but is not attached to the bobbin? Or does it have a double drive band which will be one piece of cord which goes from a separate flyer whorl, around the drive wheel to a bobbin whorl, back around the drive wheel and back to the flyer whorl?

This info will determine what you need to do to adjust the tension on your wheel.


Llyn - Spinning Editor
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You could try the Ashford website they have tutorials I have heard.

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I had to find the camera so that I could get a photo for you. I will try Ashford also.

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Last edited by Angie; 06/25/08 07:25 PM.
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Ashford "Joy".
Specifications:

* WHEEL DIAMETER: 40cm (15.75")
* ORIFICE: 1cm (3/8 ")
* ORIFICE HEIGHT: 560mm (22")
* BOBBIN CAPACITY: 100gm (3-4oz)
* RATIOS: 6, 8, 11 & 14:1
* WEIGHT: 6kg (13lb)
* Twin sealed ball bearings are used for the wheel crankshaft and for the whorl/flyer support.
* Scotch tension.

Ok, the wheel is a single drive, flyer lead - meaning that the drive band goes from the flyer whorl, around the drive wheel and ends back at the flyer whorl. When you treadle the wheel, the drive band turns the flyer.

The bobbin has a break, which is the Scotch tension. This band, which most likely looks like nylon fishing line is attached to a peg which will turn on one side and the nylon line should have either a rubber band or a spring on the loose end. There should be a hook on the side of the wheel opposite of the beg to hook the rubber band or spring to. Place the nylon line over the whorl on the end of the bobbin and tighten it by turning the peg.
You set the tension on this wheel by turning this peg...tightening it adds tension, loosening it removes tension.

Put the flyer in place and make sure you have a nice long leader on the bobbin and that the leader is attached to the bobbin tightly so it doesn't just slip around when you're trying to get started spinning.

Now, look at the main drive band - see where it fits into a groove at the top of the small wheel? The grooves in this small wheel are the flyer whorls on this particular wheel. These govern your wheel's ratios. On your wheel the ratios are: 6, 8, 11 & 14:1. The ratio tells you how many times your flyer will turn each time you treadle: one treadling turns the drive wheel one time and the drive wheel then turns the flyer X number of times. The largest diameter whorl gives you a ratio of 6 and the smallest diameter whorl will give a ratio of 14. Now, every time the flyer turns once, one twist is inserted into the fibers. So if you use your largest diameter flyer whorl (recommended for learning to spin) and you treadle once, the flyer will turn 6 times and 6 twists will go into your yarn. So...if you draft 1 inch of fibers, 6 twists will go into that 1 inch, giving you 6 twists per inch. If you draft 2 inches then 6 twists will go in and you will have 3 twists per inch. Ok, for now, just put the drive band on the largest diameter whorl smile

Now, thread the leader through the orifice and try treadling. Is the leader usnspinning? They often do - keep treadling and it will spin up again. Check to see if the leader is slipping on the bobbin.

Most importantly - is the leader taking up on the bobbin? If not, then your yarn will also not wind on. If there is no take up, then the tension is too loose. Turn the peg for the Scotch tension to tighten it - just a bit and try again until you get some take up. Too much take up yanking the fibers out of your hands? Then turn the peg to loosen the tension - again, just a bit. Scotch tension has quite a fine adjustment and you develop a feel for it. You will know when you have the tension set just right when the yarn winds onto the bobbin BUT you can still gently pull it back off of the bobbin through the orifice. As the bobbin fills, the tension will change and you will most likely have to make minor tension adjustments as you spin.

I hope this helps. Keep us posted on how you're doing.

Llyn





Llyn - Spinning Editor
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Thanks so much for the post. I will sit down and read it through. This work week has been a little wild but the weekend is close at hand. I'll sit down with a cup of tea, or maybe a glass of wine might be better, and tackle this. I'm a plugger!

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Hello! Lyn,

I have just signed up for your Guild. Having no one close to our area for Spinning I value your Post's and Spinning Issues. Question: I know they use Shetland Wool a lot, but why do they consider it a meat sheep? Question: I have a Nagy Wheel (it's my daughetes) and someday will have to give it back could you suggest a good wheel that will travel and stay at home. Thanks for your time and your Great Articles! abirder

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Well, Shetland would be considered a meat breed because it's tasty smile Actually, any breed could be considered a meat breed because they are all edible. Usually, when someone talks about meat breed, they are referring to larger breed of sheep which produces lambs which gain weight and size rapidly and produce a good sized carcass for the commercial meat industry.
Commercially, Shetland would not qualify as a good meat breed as they are small sheep.

For a wheel that is suitable for both travel and home use, I recommend the Journey wheel. It is a full sized, full function wheel which folds up into it's own hard sided travel case. It's beautifully crafted, spins very nicely, and the makers give excellent customer service and support. It is also at the high end of the portable wheel price rage scale.

I have heard good things about the Majacraft Little Gems but don't have enough experience with those myself to comment. They are in the medium price range.

If you want separate wheels for travel and home use, then you have a wide choice in styles, drive systems, and price ranges when it comes to a wheel to keep at home. So it depends on what you like. Try as many as possible before buying as some will just be more comfortable for you than others.

For travel wheels, there is the new little Pocket wheel which is quite nice and sized so it can be used in a car while riding.

A good place to try a variety of wheels is at a sheep show. These shows almost always have a vendor area with wheels to try (and buy) and a wide rage of fibers and small spinning tools.



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