More tools for weavers
Posted by
Washington State 
Joined Aug 1, '20 

As a former jeweler, I look at stuff as potential tools. Making a tool or jig for a repair was a usual thing. Now I’m a weaver, and it still holds true.

I never have enough storage bobbins (in other words, yarn spools…much larger than the bobbin in your sewing machine). That 400 yards of yarn may need to be broken down into 4 100-yd packages, each on their own bobbin. You run out of bobbins pretty quick. Some weaver/spinners put their yarn on toilet paper rolls. Practical, but ugly; and their inner diameter doesn’t fit regular bobbin winders.

At the grocery store, I picked up a package of bamboo skewers for “(what do you call it when you bargecue shrimp on a stick?)”; they are 0.11" in diameter, but for practical use, I cut holes 0.125". Even with the kerf, I had to enlarge the holes twice in the test material.

Total length of bobbin = 4", way too long for 4 skinny skewers to hold things together. So, I created two stabilizing elements that would not get in the way of the spindle on which the bobbin rests while being wound. When I was enlarging the holes, I inadvertently enlarged the stabilizing pieces differently than the holes in the end pieces. What a stroke of luck! This imparts a gentle curve into each skewer, and the tension adds to the stability of the bobbin.

The skewers allow for an easy start for rolling on the yarn, somethng that usually takes 3 hands for me. The best part is that they don’t roll away from me on a flat surface.




what’s reaaly funny is that I was so excited to have one that worked, that I forgot to take the mask off before I glued it together. Then I discovered that if I leave on the outer mask until glue is applied, I peel off the excess glue as well. Ha, lose one, win one.

Here is the shuttle I just made to go with my Swedish band reed:


See where the yarn exits to the lower right of the shuttle? There a hole there that allows an easy way to unwrap yarn from the shuttle, but prevents unwrapping if you drop it. ALL weavers drop their shuttles at some point, and not having yards of loose yarn to corral is a blessing.

OK, now I’m off to create stabilizers for the drop spindle packaging.

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