Monday, November 02, 2009

the batts are flying on halloween


so i'm a bit late on the holiday timeliness but oh well. i've had great luck getting used fiber tools. when a raveler posted that she was selling her drum carder, i leaped at the opportunity. about a week later, this showed up on my doorstep--a strauch finest.
Strauch Finest 405
now you know why i've been doing all the fleece dyeing and sparkle buying in the past few weeks.

i had read this before, but i think it's one of those things that you don't grasp until you actually do it yourself. drum carding is a lot of work and there's a definite learning curve.

teasing open each lock by hand is time consuming enough that it made me want to buy a picker (a tool that i had never seen the point of before). my first batt was ultra craptastic because i tried to feed in way too much fiber. you need to do whisper thin layers and turn the crank very slowly. also, i have no idea how people get 1-2oz on the finest. the more passes i made, the less fiber would fit on the drum, which actually made a great deal of sense when i stopped to think about it. the largest batt i've been able to get so far has been .8oz.
My first batt
this is my first attempt. it's purple romney fleece and silver angelina. a little sparkle goes a long long way. i only used a tiny amount and i think it was way too much. when i finished spinning it up, all i could think about was the 80s cartoon Jem and whipping out jazz hands while i shout that my yarn, "SPARKLES!!!!!"

so yeah. i think i'll be using the angelina extremely sparingly from this point on. i spun a low-twist singles yarn. the first batt was horrible b/c of the aforementioned lumpy overage of fiber, but the second one spun up really nicely. i can't recall if this is the first batt or the second, but it doesn't look that horrible, so it must be the second. i think the two batts combined weighed a little over an ounce.
6 romney batts
this was my second adventure in carding. it took many hours. i carded green, blue, yellow, and black romney fleece together 3 times to get a fairly blended mix. the total weight of the 6 batts is 3.6oz. i am almost finished spinning it up as a 3ply yarn. i still have way too many neps but otherwise it spun very smoothly. i pulled it into a roving and spun longdraw.

now i am really excited to make my own blends. the problem with all the romney is that it isn't very soft so i don't know what i'll actually do with all the yarns that i make. i think i'll try carding some of the extra fine corriedale fleece i got from whitefish bay next.

yay carding!


  1. I like the sparkle! Sounds like too much of a chore for me!

  2. Fascinating! I didn't realize you couldn't feed that much in at a time. I'm sure you'll have the hang of it and be cranking out all types of cool fluff!

  3. Tontine Insulation9/17/2011 08:34:00 AM

    Fantastic! It is so good. The Bat means the opportunity for change and transformation, a coming out of the dark and being reborn.




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