I haven’t had much of a chance to play with my mystery wheel yet as I’ve been revising for an exam and in training for a half marathon (I wasn’t about to pull a muscle learning to treadle). I have managed to hook it up with a new drive band and got it drawing a leader, but could only consistently treadle whilst standing up. It’s an old wheel that hasn’t been used in a while so I’ve been feeding it bits of oil to loosen everything up.
I have still been keeping an eye out for the wheel I actually want, an Ashford Joy 2, though. After the exam and half marathon were over I found a really good deal on one with a double treadle and a carry bag from a store up in Sanday. I ordered it on Monday and waited for a tracking number to come through (they are sent from a mainland distributor). I’ve finished off a couple of knitting projects recently so decided to finish off some spinning I was working on, getting my hands reacquainted with drafting, and just as I got some fibre on the spindle there was a knock on the door. My new spinning wheel had arrived!
Rather spookily I had watched a video on how to assemble an Ashford Joy about 10 minutes before sitting down to spin, so I cracked open the box, unwrapped the components and set it all up. Everything was where it was supposed to be, the only thing I had to do was attach the brake band and tension it to draw in a leader. Treadling is nice and smooth and I am loving the double treadle already even though I haven’t spun anything.
I have two big plastic crates of fibre, so will pull out something from the undyed crate to learn on, probably some Shetland. Just as soon as I finish the merino I have set aside for this other spinning project (project monogamy can be such a trial).
Here it is folded up:
and unfolded ready to go (well, when I pull the spare bobbins out of the way):
New pattern time, and this time it is an easy to work but dramatic lace shawl with three shaping options.
Inspired by the rugged Cornish coastline, it can be worked as either a triangle, a crescent, or a heart shape (or all threee).
Yarn requirements: 420-480 yards of fingering weight/4 ply/sock yarn for each shawl.
Gauge: 14 sts and 29 rows over 4 inches/10 cm in stockinette after blocking (changes to gauge will result in more/less yarn being used and different final dimensions)
||59 inches / 150 cm
||27.5 inches / 70 cm
||61 inches / 155 cm
||29 inches / 74 cm
||64 inches / 162 cm
||21 inches / 53 cm
2 pdf files are provided – a printer friendly version and one with all of the high-res images. Click on the image above for more photos.
Available to buy here.
I have been keeping any eye out for second hand spinning wheels over the last month or so (and there was a possibility that I might get one sent over from New Zealand via a friend of a friend). A couple of nights ago I can across a Gumtree listing for a wheel and chair located about 5 miles away from me. We exchanged messages and I agreed to go and have a look at it after my Body Pump class this morning.
I did as much research as I could online based on the single image in the ad and the knowledge that it definitely wasn’t an Ashford Traditional (wrong number of spokes on the drive wheel), but was coming up a blank. I also checked what to look out for in a second hand wheel (that all of the bits moved as they should, a true spin on the drive wheel, no rust in the orifice of the flyer, etc.). So obviously, with 6 extra bobbins in two lazy kates, what looks to be the original orifice hook handle (with a crochet hook substituted for the original hook) and a chair, I bought it for the drop-down bargain price of £75 (I know, a steal, but it’s what they asked for it).
I would love to know more about the wheel if anybody recognises it, there are no makers marks anywhere except an M or W on the pins holding the drive wheel in place. Photos: