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Topic: Some general questions answered  (Read 929 times)
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« on: March 16, 2009 01:13:07 PM »

edelC asked some spinning questions over in the fiber friday thread. We look over there, we discuss over here, so I'm starting a new thread.
Others, feel free to answer these too and feel free to ASK MORE QUESTIONS!!!
I love to answer questions and help out others with their spinning.
And just so you know, I've been spinning for about 20 years, but I'm also a loud mouth hippy, so if you don't agree or fins something else works better for you, that's totally fine.  Grin

....while I can't knit-I have no patience to do so and only crochet badly...so I kinda think that theres not much point in me learning to spin.
-Pshpt. If you want to, do it. Sometimes the knitting and what not comes later when you have all this yarn you want to do something with. And so what if you only spin yarn! You know you want to.....
(whoops, did I mention I'm a bit of an enabler?) Wink

I have played a little with a drop spindle...enough to learn that its not as easy as it looks!. I am curious do all of you guys have a spinning wheel or are some of you using a spindle and realistically how long would it take to spin enough to knit say a jumper with a drop spindle...
-Spinning with a drop spindle can take more time. I personally have never spun enough for a sweater (sweater=jumper) but I plan to. I can spin up 4 ounces of yarn from start to finish in about a weekend. I would probably need a pound or two of yarn for a sweater. Lets say one pound, that's 4 of my 4 oz bits, so a month? I'm sure other people's numbers would be different- if you have time to spin every night you would probably go faster but me I got little kiddos to take care of.....

I can buy carded rovings, so what weight of rovings would one need to spin enough yarn to knit a jumper...lol..I have no idea if that is an easy or a hard question to answer.
-I answered that up there but really this is a your mileage may carry kind of question. You would have to find a sweater pattern you like, find your yardage, spin your yarn... Anyone actually done this?

Oh and how do you get the sequins and beads in there, do you thread the next fibres through the holes, before you spin it in...
-You can do that but I don't. I thread my beads/ sequins/ bits of cloth on to a thread and then ply that with my yarn. It creates the twisty effect and makes the yarn stronger and yes, adds shiny. (does that make sense? Happy to show a picture...)

Feel free to ask and post away my friends!
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« Reply #1 on: March 16, 2009 01:50:10 PM »

laminathegreat thanks for this (love your nick btw)

Oh God I can feel a new obsession coming along. The biggest question is really if I start how obsessed will I become, I actually know someone who has spinning wheels and carding drum etc etc (a complete rareity in Ireland)

I actually have questions about home made dropspindles. I have been digging online and have seen CD spindles, spindles from drawer pulls (we call them door knobs over here!..lol thanks for the jumper=sweater translation btw) I have even used one that was a stick in an apple, (someone demonstrating how basic it can be.

So is it worth trying this out with a homemade one, or will it just break my heart and get me all discouraged.

I am also still trying to figure out the plying thing, i get that you have two (or three) threads with twist and you ply them together (or with regular? sewing thread) but its the mechanics of this taht I am hazy on. You create a ball on your spindle, wind it off the spindle into a ball, you use two of these and ply them together?  on the spindle?? and then wind off the new ball?...lotta winding.

Is there a limit to the size of the ball that can be achieved on the spindle?

I am sure there are a ton more questions!


I love personal swaps, for supplies, surprises, flamingo themed things and general silliness

I would love to get my hands on charlie harper fabric.
« Reply #2 on: March 16, 2009 06:32:25 PM »

Quote from: edelC
The biggest question is really if I start how obsessed will I become
Start making room for your fiber stash now...do you have a spare bedroom perhaps? lol Wink With all those sheep running around Ireland you'll have plenty of wool to spin! That's great that you know someone who spins...sometimes it helps if you can actually see someone spinning, etc. If she has more than one wheel, maybe she'll let you borrow one or at least give it a test drive!

I have a CD spindle that I made and so far it's all I spin with. It works well enough and I haven't used a 'real' spindle or a spinning wheel yet so I don't know what I'm missing, lol. I know a couple people have mentioned that the CD spindles are too light, but I just add another pair of CDs if I want it heavier. The way I made mine was to use a rubber grommet to hold 2 CDs together...the grommet has a groove around that is just right for 2 CDs. That goes on a dowel with a hook screwed into the end. Thanks to my husband, I now have an 'electric spindle', lol. He asked why I didn't just use the drill and showed me what he meant...then after I had spun a few yards he said he wasn't going to hold it every time I want to spin! His love for me apparently has its limits, lol. So now I prop the drill up on the floor against a boot and use my foot to work the 'trigger' on the drill...it works quite nicely!

As far as plying, I've only done Navajo plying so far. Although I have a single about finished that I will be plying with another and I plan to leave it on my spindle (I have 3 CD spindles). When I've done the Navajo plying I've left yarn on the spindle and slid the CDs off...the rubber grommet slides off easily enough but not so easily that it falls off when I'm spinning. I found a box just the right size and put a spindle-sized hole in each side so I can slide the spindle in and close the lid (with a hole in the top for the yarn to come out), that way it's not rolling about the floor as I ply. I figure the same should work when I do a 2-ply. I just need to make 3 more holes in my box (It has enough room to fit 2, maybe 3 spindles of yarn). If you have just one spindle then yes, lots of winding, lol.

This site covers some basics http://www.handspinning.com/lollipops/spininst.htm
A great site, http://www.joyofhandspinning.com/
On plying, http://www.fiberfemmes.com/JanFeb2007/article1.htm
"This is a spinning and plying technique where a length of singles is spun, then Navajo plied back onto the spindle. Another length is spun, then plied, and so on, so that when your spindle is full, it's full of plied yarn!" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Eunrqj97lLU

Is there a limit to the size of the ball that can be achieved...? Here I think you'll find that you will get the most frustrating answer ever...but it's really the only answer, lol. The answer - It depends. It depends on how thick or thin you spin your yarn, it depends on the size of your spindle, it depends how well or tightly you wrap it, it depends on the weather..wait, no, I'm getting carried away, lol Wink

Yes, there are probably a ton more questions...but you're in luck! There are tons of absolutely amazing spinners here (way more experienced than I...be thankful, lol) and they are all enablers very helpful!

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