CNCHnet . . . The Textile Arts Webzine of the Conference of Northern California Handweavers

Tips, Tricks & Techniques

Some clever tips are so obvious that we forget about them!  Take the case of the squeaky bobbin winder that tends to jam or bind as you wind your bobbins.  I have two of the metal Nilus -LeClerc bobbin winders.  Both are at least 30 years old and both are -or were – squeaky and balked at being used.   I took one to the Oakland conference recently and made it available for the class to use.  The teacher, Jannie Taylor, tried it and said, “this needs oiling.”  She promptly oiled it and it works like -well- a well oiled machine!  I returned home and oiled the other winder.   What an easy and obvious fix!

Classes are a good place to learn easy fixes.  Arline Zerkel shared a method she learned to easily and smoothly wind a warp on the beam. After tying the warp on the back bar, take paper towel cores slit length-wise and snap them over the warp knots before winding the warp on the warp beam.  Voila! The warp winds on smoothly with no bumps from the knots.

And for the spinners —  I recently went to Spinning Day at the Farm.  When I arrived, I discovered that the rubber band used as the tensioning brake on my wheel was quite rotten and immediately broke.  I went to one of the dealers, Morgaine Wilder of Carolina Homespun, who gave me a rubber band.  She also told me that the best replacement would be a hair band. They are sold in many sizes.  I bought  some small ones and put one to work.  She’s right. It works like a charm and is much sturdier than a rubber band–and it won’t need replacement as often.

What are your favorite tips, tricks and techniques?  Share them with your peers!

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