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Topic: Production Spinning on a Drop Spindle?  (Read 1496 times)
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jasminewolverine
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« on: February 12, 2012 10:19:47 PM »

Hi all,

I learned to spin last year by taking a five-session crash course at my LYS, and just loved it. I haven't spun much since then because I moved to another state and have not found a place to rent a wheel locally. I own a Schact Hi-Lo drop spindle and know how to use it, but for the life of me can't seem to gain enough proficiency with it to actually spin high volumes of yarn.

Any proficient drop-spindlers out there with any feedback? I would love spin enough yarn for a sizeable project, like a large shawl or even a cardigan, but the task really does seem daunting considering the pace at which I spin with my spindle. Any tips, tricks, or suggestions would be greatly appreciated, because unless I find a miraculous deal on a used wheel on craigslist, I won't be purchasing a wheel anytime soon and I have quite a few ounces of fiber begging to be spun!
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mullerslanefarm
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« Reply #1 on: February 13, 2012 09:09:39 AM »

Take your spindle and fiber with you where ever you go.  Any time you have a few minutes of waiting (in line some where ... a long traffic light, etc) take the opportunity to spin.

It may surprise you how much yarn you can create a few minutes at a time.
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« Reply #2 on: February 17, 2012 03:39:46 PM »

I don't remember where I saw the article (spin off?), However the jist of it was this:
Wheel spinners and Spindle spinners went head to head, they were matched in experience.  They were given 2 minutes to spin as much as they could. At the end of the 2 minutes there was less then a yard difference between the two.  This result was repeated with all the spinners at this world conference.  

So you can, infact, spin just as much on a spindle as a wheel.  It's a different set of body mechanics, and I wouldn't be surprised that if you spun as often as you would wish too that you would be a bit sore from the experience in the first few days/ possibly weeks.
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« Reply #3 on: February 18, 2012 05:50:57 AM »

Absolutely Bella.  And since the drop spindle is portable, you can actually spin more on a spindle than a wheel.
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jasminewolverine
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« Reply #4 on: February 25, 2012 10:32:26 PM »

I actually found a book at my local library with a lot of good technical information regarding the mechanics of drop spindle spinning that has been enormously helpful: Spinning the Old Way by Priscilla Gibson-Roberts. She has a lot of information on how to reduce fatigue and strain, achieve consistency, and really make the entire process more efficient by breaking it down and really examining each individual hand movement and how it relates to manipulating the spindle and fiber. It is a great resource.
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« Reply #5 on: February 26, 2012 05:47:27 AM »

That's great you found that book!  I know the biggest problem I have with spindle spinning is it seems to tire me out and my arms hurt sooner, so I'll have to go have a look for that book too.
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