Thursday, May 15, 2008

Stone Soul Picnic

My husband found a workable rubber grommet for the stone donut (I bought several last summer while on vacation in my home town, intending to make spindles eventually. I guess *eventually* comes out to about 10 months). First, he cannibalized our ceiling fan to try one of the grommets where the blades screw on to the fan itself. Unfortunately, that rendered the fan a little less functional. Luckily, he found another style at the True Value. It doesn't fit quite as well (the groove is a lot narrower), but it'll do in a pinch.

The spindle went together very easily- I don't have a lathe to make the shaft pretty, so the stone will have to do the heavy lifting in that department. I opened up a screw-eye for the hook, and rounded the trimmed dowel ends with sand paper.

I have 2.7 ozs of merino roving (dyed by my friend Dana, and left from a larger project) that I'm using as a test run for this spindle. I didn't get a pic with yarn on it, but it spins just fine- it has a bit of a wobble (the stone itself isn't perfectly shaped, so that affects the balance) but otherwise, it spins fast and holds the rotation for quite awhile. I am quite pleased.

Stats: Shaft 9" (1" above the whorl), the stone whorl is 2" in diameter, it weighs 1.1 ozs (32 gr). I used a 12" x 1/4" hardwood dowel (it's a cake dowel, Wilton probably- got it at Walmart in a package of 12), a 1/2" screw-eye (opened), and a grommet that is 3/8" across, with a 1/4" opening. The grommet holds the whorl in place nicely, but it is adjustable- I could turn it into a low whorl easily. I don't know what the stone is, but I'm guessing Jasper.

I have several more stone whorls, so I'll probably make a few more spindles when I get some more grommets.

I'm playing Grandma this weekend, so probably there won't be any new posts until Monday. Have a great weekend everyone.


Kim said...

I've been reading your blog for quite a while and love your colorwork designs. I've actually found the courage to try colorwork and found I like it. Spinning with a drop spindle has been an interest but there is no one in my area who spins so I've truly enjoyed your last few posts. I've watched a few videos online and believe it's doable with practice. If you don't mind it I ask, where have you purchased fiber online and have you been pleased with it? Thank you so much for posting the info you have so far it's great!

Kathleen Taylor said...

Kim- drop spinning is absolutely doable- it just takes time and practice.

I'll think through sources for you and post to the blog in a day or so with a list. As a beginner, I think you'd be better off starting with one of the Long Wools (like Romney). Then again, I learned to spin with Llama, which is very slippery and usually not considered good for beginners. So if you want to look throuth eBay or Etsy for hand dyed merino and Blue Faced Leicester, or Corriedale rovings, you'll find tons of beautiful wools to play with.