Thursday, February 27, 2014

My weirdest post ever

The other day, I was spinning some carded, medium long wool, loosely drafting inch worm to produce a decent semi-worsted medium (22,000 ypp) single.  It was the AA #0 flier, set up with Scotch tension running under 3,000 rpm.

For some reason, I treadled harder and faster.  Suddenly, the yarn began to "self assemble" into a "super worsted".  The "super worsted" was smoother, denser, stronger, and more elastic than any wool  that I had ever spun.  It is amazing.

It turns out that it also works with carefully combed Shetland, fine Merino/Tussah silk blends, combed Rambouillet, Romney, Jacob, and CVM. What is required is twist insertion at well over 3,000 rpm.  Mostly the resulting yarn is at about the spin count, particularly with the long wools.

At first, I thought it was just high twist or over twisted worsted.  However, it is not like the high twist or over twisted yarn that I spin a lower speed.  Nor, is it like any modern hand spun that I have ever seen.  On the other hand, I do not see a lot of modern hand spun yarns spun near their spin count.  And, I am still not getting it consistently, so a certain knack/technique does seem to be required. When I do get it, it ts what I want for fine loom warp.  It does not really show up at internet resolution, so if you want to see it, I will have my wheel at CNCH.

If I could spin it at 2,800 ypp I would retask all my loom warp, and spin new, in the new style, but the new style seems to want finer grist.  This changes my take on shirting and how it was spun, and how to spin it.  Suddenly spinning hanks of 10 or 12 grams on little tiny fliers going very fast makes a lot of sense.  (And for all of you who do not know, a 10 gram /560 yard hank  of CVM looks just like "a little shit".   Dana gave me a good price on several pounds of CVM, and I practiced spinning 40 hanks per pound.

I have also told people that I will have the new Lazy Kate there if they want to see it making 10-ply.  (I an not selling them, I am just showing people the concept, so they can make a better one.)

In the mean time, my working hypothesis 1 is that the higher spin speed simply requires more concentration, so I put more focus into my worsted.

Working alternative hypothesis 2 is that there is a vibration or flex in the single that compacts and smoothes the single.

Working alternative hypothesis 3 is that twist is moving up into drafting zone and the rate of twist is so high that the moving fibers are able to "grab" the stationary fibers in ways that do not occur at slower speed.

Working alternative hypothesis 4 is that I have just gone crazy.

I would consider AH 3 to be the least plausible, but the most consistent with current observations.

1 comment:

=Tamar said...

It's said that the most important moment in science is when someone says "Hmm, that's funny..." It means something is about to be discovered.