Monday, May 30, 2011

memorial day

here you go!


approximately 89 yds. of coffee new zealand mixed breed singles!  it’s definitely more uniform here at the beginning of the bobbin than towards the end, so maybe i’ll pack the bobbins less full for awhile, but i’m spinning!  into the bath with this (it rested on the bobbin overnight)  and then, when it’s dry, to cast on for daedalus!  whee!!!

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Sunday, May 29, 2011

at long last!

i made this!


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back with ash, this the start of the lb of coffee new zealand mixed i got for cheeeeep from international fleeces, which is closing.

nz mixed

still getting kinkies sometimes.   i got another 20 ozs of cafe au lait to spin into the yarn for daedalus for my russian underpants goal in the tour de fleece; this morning it occurred to me that maybe i could just make it out of fingering weight singles?  i might be able to accomplish that…

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memorial day 2

well, as usual when i write something down, i did other things.  that’s okay.  i finished off my first three skeins, which had been resting all this time.


they were right, all the kink came out and they do hang straight! (at least.)

i worked on ash some,started up the coffee new zealand mixed, so on we go.  i really need to get enough nerve up just just go in there and strip down bonnie :}

Saturday, May 28, 2011

memorial day weekend

having taken last weekend off to knit nonstop (i can do that, you see), i now have elebentyX2 things i want to do this weekend:

  • strip and refinish bonnie
  • work on ash
  • warp the ikeahack
  • finish the needle case
  • shop for little middle

seems i should start them in that order, too.  can i get  bonnie finished in three days, i wonder?  need to mix up some stripper now.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

skein three

skein 3: 1oz
this is 1oz from my lb.+ of  corriedale, which seemed much easier to use.
1 oz predrafted corriedale
i split it lengthwise and pre-drafted it to add a second ounce.
skein 3: 2oz corriedale
the second ounce didn’t go on as well for some reason.  problems with take up as the bobbin filled made it somewhat thicker and thinner than the first ounce, although nowhere near so bad as yesterday’s yarf. maybe should have done two 1oz bobbins and plied them instead of filling one?
i think i’ll do another bobbin.
do i have to let them rest overnight before plying them?
well, i tried, but plying is just not working:  the final result is not much better than yesterday’s.  after 9 or 10  straight hours, the weekend is over now.   i broke it off and gave up. i am sad.
til next week.
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Saturday, May 14, 2011

at long last

it’s at least beginning to work.

with the new official spring brake system i  managed to get ash to spin as consistently as i am, to date, able.  but the first skein i broke off after plying what turned out to be 12 yardsskein 1 12 yds bad z ply

because ash just wasn’t taking up on the ply and i was pretty much turning the bobbin by hand.  i skeined it up and, of course, it twisted badly in the Z direction. after restringing the rear spring an inch or so higher so i could actually tighten it while plying, i got this:

skein 2 17 yds even ply

this skeined up to 17 yards with no visible ply twist.  here are the two skeins, for comparison.

bad z ply/even ply

laughable, of course, but then they’re supposed to be.  i spun up nearly every stray scrap and, remember, this is all the various weekends’ worth of trial and error, not just today’s, added up to 29 yards of definitely thick and thin yarf. but. hey, i’m on my way!

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new official brake system

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Sunday, May 8, 2011

a sample model?



i bought a small niddy noddy with the kind of turning that’s on bonnie, and realized i could practice on it until i get the finish i want.


this isn’t it.  it could be if it was really that blue, but it’s really much more navy than in the photo.  i’ve sent back for some white milk paint so i can see what will happen if i lighten it up some.  this is a wash of ultramarine, then a coat of tung, then sanded. i think it’s going to take awhile, probably longer than i have before brigadoon, so i’ll come back to it in august, if so.

btw, this is what i got when i couldn’t find the 3m contour pad thingys that frazzle made up recommended.:)



cleaned the rust off the flyer with wd40 and put a coat of tung on the flyer and bobbin.


(took them apart to oil; just put them back together for the picture.) boy, were  they thirsty, especially on the flat ends. it took lots of slathering before i even got a shine! (i didn’t put any in the grooves of the whorl, having heard, i think, that it can cause slippage?  should i?)

while i was at it, i put a coat on ash’s unfinished upgraded flyer, too.


also thirsty, and no oil in the whorl grooves, although this is younger wood and is wicking it up in there some, i think.

first thing this morning i already had gone to home despot and bought (along with the fake steel wool) a package of 84 assorted springs (!) for under $5.  i used this one to replace the rubber band brake, which i’d realized was being thwacked by the flyer at every rotation.


and guess what?  i’m back in business! :D

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Sunday, May 1, 2011




how did we get here???

i sent off my observation document this morning so i’m free and i got brave, so here we go with the first test bits of bonnie’s spa rehab!

first i did the easy part: while the milk paint remover was curing, i put murphy’s on the estonian flyer.


estonia in 1943 was not a happy place, and yet someone made this bobbin that year.  did they have sheep of  their own to turn into fabric?  they hadn’t eaten them?  perhaps for a flax wheel, then?


it wasn’t all that dirty, really, just a spray and a short soak, then a hit with an old toothbrush (i keep old toothbrushes on the sponge rack in the dishwasher, do you?  that way i always have a clean one handy.)


going to leave the bobbin at this stage until can bring home some pipe cleaners tomorrow, since i’ll need to clean out the inside, too, before using the tung oil.


i had put two scoops (see scoop?) of water in the glass dish and then just one little scoop of the milk paint remover powder.  when i came back and stirred it up after curing, it made enough to do the whole moa, both maidens and the pin!


they’re sitting now.  i’m spritzing them with water every so often to keep it all happening.  just about time to go check on them,  as a matter of fact…


they’d dried out pretty much, so i spritzed them again,


and scraped a bit off with a pairing knife, just to check.


it’s working!



turned ‘em all over and re-spritzed pretty heavily.  it’s been about 15 minutes, so i guess it’s just about time to go put on my gloves and see what we’ve got…


re-spritz and a scrape with the back of the paring knife, some minimal work with the blue nylon kitchen scrubby, and look how much came off already!


even the recalcitrant screw and the front leather came out ! (the recessed back one is also pegged, possibly with leather, i don’t know, and will need some more dedicated pushing.)  i doubt it will take more than one more go round with a toothbrush—maybe some floss?—to get the rest off!   i think there may well have been traces of red and black underneath, since the goop on my yellow gloves was, at times a shade of dark mauve rather than the glubby blue.  but the whole operation to this point, including this post, can’t have taken two hours! this will be a doable (continual) weekend project, after all!  yay!

it’s noon: time for day three of jazz fest on wwoz!:)