Sunday, September 27, 2015

Spinning stools

I broke a pitman rod connector, so the wheel is in the shop. I fabricated a new connector and want to test it.  The stool at hand was a step stool with a top step at 24".  I sort of half sat, half leaned against it as I treadled. 

The position allowed me to deliver a good deal more power to the wheel - more speed.  A lot more speed.  Will the wheel tolerate the extra stress?  I mean a broken pitman rod connector says the wheel is already under stress (or the plastic connector did not like the synthetic oil I have been using, or the plastic only has a life time of 7 years, or there was a defect in the plastic).

Anyway, the stool is light, compact, with just enough back, so I added a pillow to the seat, and it is my new spinning stool. 

The new connector is stainless steel aircraft cable.  A temp fix is in place, and with 2 more trips to the hardware store, (any project that requires just one trip to the hardware store is too small to matter). . .. .
Now the thing will insert twist at over 5,000 rpm. That is a mile stone.

It also tells us that our concept of spinning stools is not very ergonomic, an is likely derived from what was available to the crofter doing subsistence spinning after 1800 rather than from the professional spinners prior to 1780.  My guess is that the spinning stools of the earlier professional spinners were more like what we would call a weaving bench.

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