Thursday, July 23, 2009

Update on Longdraw Spinning

I've just completed two bobbins of singles yarn spun as I was shown at the workshop run by the Guild of Longdraw Spinners at the Derbyshire Guild a couple of Saturdays ago.

I spun part of a beautiful Portland fleece which has loads of crimp, which I hope you can see here. Being very fine and crimpy, I realised, as I was spinning, that I might just have a few problems with this method of spinning as it has a tendency to stretch the fibres and I felt that I might just have a problem with the crimp wanting to relax once plyed and off the bobbin.

You will see from this image just what I mean! I have seen worse, but there is a fair degree of relaxing of the crimp that causes the yarn to be rather unruly, to say the least!

Once I realised what was happening, and remembering how Margaret Stove described how she relaxed the crimp before allowing any twist into the drafted fibres, I began to modify my spinning technique. If you don't know this technique, Margarets book is "Merino - Handspining, Dyeing and Working with Merino and Superfine Wools", ISBN 0-7090-4711-8.

Although this isn't a good image, you will see that the plyed yarn, at the top, is not wanting to relax and crimp up again.

So what have I learnt! Well, this method of longdraw is not to be used with very fine, crimpy fleece. Rather, is should be spun using Margaret Stoves method, only allowing the twist into the drafted fibres once the crimp is relaxed. I will try a small sample using my usual longdraw technique, where I prepare the fibres into rolags first and see if that produces a smoother less unruly yarn. I'll let you know anon!


Dorothy said...

This is interesting because my first long draw skein (spun about a month ago, not tried again since) came out wiggly like yours, although it was a nicely balanced skein. I was handcarding rolags from washed Ryeland.

I put it down to the twist in the long draw not being as constant and carefully controlled as my usual short draw or semi-worstead spinning.

Willington Weaver said...

Hi Dorothy

it's more likely to be the very fine crimp in the Ryeland.

I've been using longdraw for many years, now, but usually for very short fibres - cotton, angora rabbit, silk noils, etc., and with these fibres I have no problem.

The problem of very fine crimpy fibres wanting to relax can happen with shortdraw/semi-worsted spinning, too.

I do recommend Margaret Stoves book.


Dorothy said...

Hi Alison, I shall go back to Margaret Stove as you suggest. It took my a couple of years to find her book at an affordable price, and I treasure it.

Anonymous said...

Good post and this mail helped me alot in my college assignement. Thanks you for your information.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...