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Topic: Spindle Physics Tutorial(I'm having a nerd moment)  (Read 2034 times)
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chromegrrrl
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« on: July 31, 2005 10:48:49 AM »

....or how to design (or choose) a drop spindle for maximum efficiency:
I was presenting a demo for some homeschoolers on Newtonian physics and realized that some of what I was demonstrating might be useful to handspinners (I also engineer spindle designs and produce spindles so I know how to apply this stuff to real life)

If you want to test what I'm trying to explain all it takes is a CD spindle, a bit of fiber (preferably low crimp) and some modelling clay.

A drop spindle is a whorl (flywheel) and a shaft (drive shaft/axis.) Weight and drive (flicking, rolling or snapping the shaft manually) alone do not determine the speed at which a spindle can spin, nor does weight determine the thinness of a yarn (although it can be a factor.) The whole point of this rudimentary machine is to store energy in your fiber-- to do it efficiently we need speed, force, and stability.

Horizontal weight placement determines the efficiency of energy transference (force of spin, not speed). Imagine the whorl as a bulls eye, if the outer most ring is weighted then the energy follows the weight using centrifugal force to carry through and allowing more spin (through less resistance.) Move the weight inward just one ring of the bulls eye and the centrifugal force is reduced. Move the weight so that it is in the center and the centrifugal force is even less of a factor, the spin becomes less powerful but there is a slight increase in speed.

To increase stability you'll need centered vertical weight at two points, one point is the axis point (where the flywheel meets the shaft) and one is the draw point (at or before the terminating point of the bottom of the shaft) this counters the wobble from weight that is present elsewhere in the whorl.

Now there are other factors such as flange construction, aerodynamics, balance to weight ratios, and the ability of a fiber (and fiber densities) to receive, store,  release or resist energy etc. that I'm leaving out (for now) but this is enough to chew on at the moment. If you have any questions feel free to ask.
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mols
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« Reply #1 on: August 01, 2005 07:53:59 PM »

Nifty Nerdy thoughts. That sort of thing facinates me.  Off topic a bit, I created a Metals project that only balanced when filled with water.  Check it out:
http://www.jeni.voosten.com/portfolio/metals/bowl.html

If you're into mathmatics as well, even if you don't knit, check out this book:
Unexpected Knitting by Debbie New
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chromegrrrl
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« Reply #2 on: August 01, 2005 10:44:42 PM »

That is totally wild, I love your bowl.
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annalou
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« Reply #3 on: August 02, 2005 06:28:30 PM »

I remember someone once theorizing on how the design of a Turkish spindle dampens wobbles and so allows it to spin for a long time.  Any comments?
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chromegrrrl
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« Reply #4 on: August 05, 2005 05:23:02 PM »

My first impression is that when the cop is built up on the turkish (since it's ball shaped) the addition of mass near the shaft would make the spin more stable. I'll have play around with that one for a while.
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