Sunday, May 13, 2012

Winding off of a precise DRS bobbin assembly

For high grist singles, I use a precise DRS bobbin to flier ratio without slippage.  This means that the twist inserted in to the yarn changes as the effective diameter of the bobbin changes as yarn winds onto the bobbin. Thus, consistent twist requires frequent windoffs.

In the past, I simply knotted the the new single to the end of the single already on my windoff bobbin. Then, when I plied, I would take the knots out, and overlap to form a continuous yarn.   However, I never liked having singles with a knot in them every couple of hundred yards.

However, by putting a hook  in the end of the dowel that holds my windoff bobbin, I can now make "spun" joins as I wind my singles off, even if it takes a hundred turns to make a secure joint in the yarn.

I taper both ends of the singles to be joined, overlap the ends, and insert enough twist to hold the joint together.  Inserting that twist with the drill is fast and easy.  Sure, I could have done it manually, but that was very slow for fine, high twist yarns.  And, it did not really matter for 5 or 6 ply gansey yarns.  For a lace yarn, it matters.

Thus, this bobbin now holds some 400 yards of  27,000 ypp single spin on a precise DRS bobbin assembly without a knot in it.

The fiber is Rambouillet.  It has more luster than the other fine wools.  I like that luster a lot.  This stuff gleams and sparkles.  The stuff on the bobbin above does not sparkle because it has spinning "goo" on it.

Wednesday, May 09, 2012

The new spinning workstation

A few months ago, Stephenie Gaustad told me that if I really wanted to spin fast, I should go to an e-spinner or motor spinner.  I had a bunch of reasons why I did not want to start motor spinning.

However, last month I helped my sister move her gold smith shop.  At the end of the day there was a 1/4 hp, 18,000 rpm industrial motor left, over and my sister suggested that I take it home with me ( Across country.)

It sat in the corner of the shop for a few days, then a rebuild kit arrived from Grizzly, and in a couple of hours,  it was a good as new.

Then, it wanted a purpose in life.  It wanted to spin.  There were a dozen prototypes, including one with a Ashford Jumbo ST flier that actually did several hundred yards of ~9,000 ypp single before being disassembled.

However,  one cannot keep nice little motor like that in a drawer.  It wants to spin.

The new spinning workstation.  

Much, much faster for high twist singles.  This is a prototype but as a workstation, it works so well that I am not in a hurry to build the Mark II version.

Speed is controlled by a "router speed controller" with a foot pedal (like a sewing machine) for a soft start. (This approach works on "universal wound" motors with brushes.) The flier is a #1 double drive by Alden Amos.  I turned the bobbins to have correct DRS and core diameters to insert the correct twist for the singles that I spin.  The MOA is standard Ashford.

I would not have bothered if I was spinning low twist (less than 5,600 ypp) yarns, and I think that yarns thinner than  ~ 30,000 ypp are too fragile for this machine, but for garment weight singles, it is wonderful.