does anyone have an opinion about spinning wheels? I'm entertaining the thought of getting one and wondered which ones people liked and why - any input is appreciated :)
I tried a drop-spindle, and that's pretty much all I did. I HATED it. I marvel that anyone can produce yarn using those #@$& things. I decided to purchase a wheel but found test driving them wasn't an option as there were no merchants near me. I did a fair amount of research and settled on a Kromski Symphony. I was drawn to the traditional form, construction and materials, the price, and its versatility: double-treadle, double-drive w/ Scotch tension option and a selection of affordable accessories. Nothing modern or synthetic as I wanted my spinning to be simple and traditional. That was about five years ago and I still love this wheel. My only displeasure with it has been its size. The Mazurka or the Minstrel would have had lower ratios but the savings in real estate would be appreciated.
I learned to knit because I had to do something with the yarn I was spinning (my first love). I fell in love with the Kromski Minstrel (http://www.newvoyager.com/) and that was the first wheel I bought. The one drawback that I have discovered with that particular wheel is that I didn't set it up to learn using the scotch tension and I'm in the process of doing that now so that I can spin more fibers and have more variation in my fiber thickness. For example, cotton requires a much tighter twist than the wool I usually spin and tends to need to be thinner as weel.
The Louet wheel is one that I've seen a lot of people start with, but Kromski has a new wheel the Sonata that works from Scotch Tension and is portable.
Try to find a place to sit down with different wheels and when you're ready to purchase, I would refer you to my friend Morgaine and www.carolinahomespun.com. She can also answer spinning questions, just let her know I suggested you talk with her.
Any other questions? Are you drop spindling now? I would definitely encourage learning how to do that.
Oh, this is a topic that is full of opinions - everyone has one! You'll not get any that will agree as to single/double treadle, single/double drive, bobbin/flyer lead, upright/Saxony style, right/left orifice, traditional or the newer models... the list goes on.
You will find that, over time, you will find the one that works best for you. The best thing would be to try out a couple, spin a bit with it, and see what things you like or not like. Or buy one, use it for practice, and then decide what you like, and buy another one. And then another one, because this one doesn't have THAT feature, and then one more because it does these things, and you really need one that is easy to take with you, and... well, be sure you have plenty of room to keep all these wheels.
I'm not saying how I know about all these things.
I wrote you a very lengthy reply but the site didn't post it. Sorry. Email me offsite and I'll try to reproduce it for you. What a pain in the ass.
~Mike in Tampa
Yahoo Id: stickywarp2001
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