I got a spinning-wheel!

…and it’s driving me crazy! I know at least GingeroftheNorth spins - if there’s any other spinners who might have suggestions, I’d love to hear them!

The wheel is an older model (late 60’s, I’d guess) Ashford Traditional, that I got on eBay. I’ve had it a month, and haven’t succeeded in spinning anything yet. I just can’t seem to get it going right - it seems like once it gets going, the flyer comes loose and the drive-belt is thrown off (or maybe it’s the other way around - the thrown belt knocks the flyer off the maidens). I think it might be that the flyer’s unbalanced (one of the flyer hooks arrived bent, and snapped off at the wood). It’s more likely, though, that I’m just doing it wrong.

I’ve bought “Aldon Amos’s Big Book of Spinning,” and “The Whole Craft of Spinning” by Carole Kroll, and the booklet that came with the wheel, but somehow I still can’t manage it. Before everything comes apart, I’m ending up with one end that’s kinky-twisted and the other that’s one big slub. Is it even possible to do this self-taught? Or do I need to find a class?

I want to spin! Can somebody help me?


I think I saw that one on eBay! Did you get a crazy deal on it? I had one on my watch list, but I’ve decided to stick with the stupid ol’ Louet for now. If I continue to spin, I will look for something different.

You can learn how to do it! There are videos available online to help. I had the benefit of local people to teach me. Where are you? Are you on Ravelry? There are bound to be resources to help.

Meanwhile, I’ll be hangin’ at STITCHES this weekend. Wahoo!

My wife had one. Also an ebay thing. Came with some parts missing and sat around, in the way much like excercise equipment does, for what seemed like forever.

One day, she knocked over a very expensive, one-of-a-kind piece of artwork (on canvas) that was inexplicable perched over said wheel (it never spun to my knowledge) and it landed on it just soooooo, destroying the nice, expensive piece of art.

It got resold on ebay shortly thereafter.

Anybody want as much filthy, smelly wool as they can take?

No, thanks. I buy my roving washed. Less sheepy that way.

BLEAH to the smell of sheeps!

A friend taught me how on her wheel years ago but I never got to the point of making yarn that wouldn’t fall apart when I yanked on it. I had a really hard time keeping an even pace too. I should keep my eyes out for a used one now that I have plenty of time to practice.

Karyn, that’s just because you didn’t let it twist enough. If that’s a problem in the future, loosen the tension on the wheel and it will spin the wool more before it’s taken up onto the bobbin.

Still trying to master the drop-spindle, here.

We’re colonial reenactors and my wife bought a wheel a couple of years ago. It took a while of self-teaching, but she spun enough yarn to give some to my mother as a present. Mom then made my wife a hat out of it.

She has bought her wool from Halcyon, but a friend has given us smelly sheared wool from the farm. So far, she’s washed that twice but hasn’t carded or spun any of it.

You’re a better person than I. I hate drop-spindling and dropped it (heh) after about five minutes.

I’ve done both drop-spindle and wheel spinning, and all I have to add is that either technique takes lots of practice to master.

Well, that, and my wheel is a 150 year old working antique :smiley:

Now that I have plenty of time to learn I should look for a used wheel and take a real class. People around here are always giving away smelly sheared wool for free.

I just got an old table loom at a yard sale and the technique is pretty easy but I’m nowhere near ready to make anything with more than 2 colors.

Where are you, and how much of the foul stuff do you have? I’ll take it off your hands if we can agree on a price.

I have a drop spindle with the disc at the top, I forget what type of drop spindle that’s called, and a box of roving and a book – all thanks to a friend in HI who freely sent the lot over to me.

I should try using up more of the wool, I suppose. I can spin stuff but it tends to kink slightly when released from the spindle. I’m not sure if that’s what it’s supposed to do?

If it kinks a LOT, that’s over spun. Kinking slightly is ok.