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1  FIBER ARTS / Spinning: Discussion and Questions / Re: Books on Spinning - The Comprehensive Thread on: August 26, 2009 09:54:14 AM
I love love love:

Start Spinning:  Everything You Need to Know to Make Great Yarn, by Maggie Casey (super place to start, for both spindle & wheel...I took classes with Maggie, and this book is her Beginning Spinning class in book form.  AWESOME!)

The Encyclopedia of Handspinning, by Mabel Ross (talk about thorough!!)

Productive Spindling, by Amelia Garropoli (this one's new, and wonderfully exhaustive on the topic of using a drop spindle)

The Intentional Spinner: A Holistic Approach to Making Yarn, by Judith MacKenzie McCuin (geared toward the intermediate spinner...read this one after you've read Start Spinning)
2  FIBER ARTS / Spinning: Discussion and Questions / Re: The random SPINNY babble thread :-) on: August 06, 2009 03:28:33 PM
Definitely agree with MLF --- it's missing the flyer, bobbins, treadle (I think), drive band (although that's not a big deal)...just too many parts for this to be a good purchase.  You are much better off saving up for a little while to buy an "entry level" wheel like a Babe, Ashford Kiwi, or even a Fidelis: http://www.etsy.com/shop.php?user_id=5189147 .  I know it's hard, but resist the temptation to buy something that's not complete!  Wink
3  FIBER ARTS / Spinning: Discussion and Questions / Re: new to the wheel and haveing problems HELP on: July 10, 2009 08:18:11 AM
Also, remember that you can always remove twist.  If you spin a yarn that is kinked up and hard to the touch, take the bobbin off the wheel, put it on a lazy kate, and feed the yarn back through the wheel while treadling in the opposite direction of the spin.  Make sure your brake band is pretty snug for this...you want to remove SOME twist but not all. 

And like natashafatale said, your hands will eventually catch up to your feet and you'll be able to spin exactly the kind of yarn you want!   Wink
4  FIBER ARTS / Spinning: Discussion and Questions / Re: HANDSPUN ART YARN WORKSHOP IN CENTRAL TEXAS!!!! on: June 29, 2009 08:38:00 AM
Ooooh, I love Fredricksburg.  I especially love that little tucked-away herb farm that's hidden there somewhere.  Smiley

Yep, count me in! 
5  FIBER ARTS / Spinning: Discussion and Questions / Re: HANDSPUN ART YARN WORKSHOP IN CENTRAL TEXAS!!!! on: June 22, 2009 02:01:17 PM
I would most definitely be interested!  I actually live in Boulder, CO, but might be moving back to Austin in May 2010.  Regardless, my sister lives there and any excuse to go visit is a good one.  Smiley
6  FIBER ARTS / Spinning: Discussion and Questions / Re: Overspinning like whoa on: April 23, 2009 07:21:52 AM
A nice, airy batt would be great for long draw!  Anything where the fibers are not parallel would work well.  Merino combed top is great for worsted spinning, any type of worsted spinning.  It's especially good for spinning, say, sock yarn, since worsted-spun yarn is strong and smooth.  Worsted-spun yarn also drapes better than woolen yarn, since it is denser. 

Don't feel silly about a thing!  That's the beauty of spinning...there is always something new to learn!   Wink
7  FIBER ARTS / Spinning: Discussion and Questions / Re: Overspinning like whoa on: April 22, 2009 12:33:22 PM
I've heard that merino is hard to spin, but it's pretty much all I've ever spun because I love it SO MUCH. But it may be better to try the long draw with a more forgiving fiber.

Are you using combed top while trying to long draw?  That might be part of your problem!  Definitely give carded roving a try, or even batts or rolags.  Combed top wants to spin worsted (i.e. short forward draw) rather than woolen (i.e. long backward draw), especially commercial combed top...it is superduper compacted, and the fibers don't really want to let go of their neighbors.  A lot of ease of spinning lies in how the fibers are prepped.  If all you have is commercial top, try to separate it out and fluff it up, split, or predraft if you want to long draw.
8  FIBER ARTS / Spinning: Discussion and Questions / Re: Overspinning like whoa on: April 22, 2009 07:30:23 AM
Do you adjust your tension as you spin?  As yarn fills the bobbin, more tension needs to be applied to avoid overspinning.  I have the treadling-like-a-maniac problem, too, and find that I have to tighten the brake about every 5-10 minutes or so.  

If you slam on the brake, draw-in and take-up increase a LOT and you will be forced to treadle more slowly and draft more quickly.  You might want to try this out just as a training exercise.  

Also, a yarn twisting back on itself before the oriface is actually pretty normal.  There's just some energy there, as is always present in singles yarns.  A ton of twisting back indicates overspinning, and like natashafatale said, you can always send the yarn back through to correct the problem.  A little bit of twisting back is usually remedied by setting the twist (make sure to "snap" your yarn after soaking to even out the twist).  

No matter what anyone says, singles are by definition not balanced.  They can never be truly balanced unless they are plied.   Wink
9  ORGANIZED CRAFT SWAPS / New Swap Theme Ideas / Re: Yarn-optional fiber swap on: April 20, 2009 07:14:30 AM
I'd be down with a fiber swap, especially because it would give me an(other) excuse to use my new wool combs!   Cheesy
10  FIBER ARTS / Spinning: Completed Projects / Re: Fiber Friday 4/17/09 on: April 19, 2009 10:09:31 AM
OMG, Twiztidblood,that spinning wheel is AMAZING!!!  How fantastic!   Shocked
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