Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Making Friends

One of the joys of travelling to teach is meeting so many weavers in person. Some of them I know from the internet chat groups, but many I don't.

I get to stay with one or two and see their work, tour their studios, and sometimes I help 'train' their looms. :D

Susie had bought a well loved AVL home loom, but couldn't figure out the sectional equipment or how to tie it up. So one morning while she went off to her writing class (allowing me to sleep in - heaven!) I wound a warp, dressed her loom and got it set up for a four shaft direct tie up so that she could finally weave on it.

When I got to the beaming part, I couldn't hold the chain and roll it on at the same time, so I looked around the house and garage until I found something I could use for weight - a partially empty paint can worked a treat.

The warp was only 4 yards long so initially I just tied the chain to the handle of the paint can, then found some string, attached the string to the chain with a lark's head, then tied the string to the can so I could wind on the last 18 inches. :)

By the time Susie got home at 1 pm, the loom was all tied up and ready to weave on.

In Columbus, Kathleen had a 16 shaft AVL Production Loom that was giving her fits. Again a well loved loom before she got it. We re-wound the apron so it was wound on the correct direction, ran the cord from the cloth take up back onto the drum at the rear of the loom, and lubricated both the front and back drums loosening them a bit so that they would rotate freely.

I also pointed out that the wooden bracket that held the cloth storage beam at the other end was broken - the wood had split along the grain - and needed to be replaced. A simple job for her wood handy husband to fix.

It feels great to leave behind two friendlier looms.


Janet said...

Welcome home! :D

Your picture of the paint can hanging from the warp reminded me of a couple of things.

The first was a time when I had such miserable tension on my warp that I weighted the entire thing with 2L pop bottles hanging from every 5" or so of a 50" wide warp. Fun timez!

The second are some really fascinating pictures that Mom brought back from Turkey of the way they wind their warps (30m long) into "warp balls" - they don't beam them at all, just wind them up into huge balls and then tension them with cords and sticks. I'm determined to figure out how that's done and try it myself some day.

Laura said...

I can't remember which book I saw it in, but somewhere in India (I think) they use pit looms and the warp is simply run around a rod at the back of the loom, up over a rod near the ceiling and the ball hangs, weighted, at the back. :O

It makes sense if you don't have big trees to make a warp beam and have to make do with sticks and string.......

Over the years I've learned the the most important step in getting good tension is to wind a consistent warp chain. :) And keep those babies under tension. After all, a thread under tension is a thread under control. ;^)

Congrats on a successful scarfaday, knitathon etc.



Sharon Schulze said...

I had to get a new warp beam for my Schacht standard floor loom and when I put the apron back on I put it on in the wrong direction. I couldn't bear to hold up my weaving so I have a short warp on with the apron backwards but what I'm wondering is if I will do some damage? Or is it just harder on the apron fabric?

and Welcome Back! Haven't read all the entries yet but I'm looking forward to it.

Laura said...

I don't imagine it will damage the apron, especially with a short warp. :) But probably a good idea to put it on the right way round as soon as you are done.

I'm happy to be home, but missing the warm weather!!!! Hopefully the current cold snap will be the last (pretty please?) of the really cold temps.