Totally new to the forum. Thanks for having me! This seem likes the place for knowledge. I have no idea what I have here. It appears to be an early 19th century upright spinning wheel, possibly for flax production. Anybody know exactly? Is it a castle wheel? What parts are missing to hold the flyer? Should there be a distaff? So baffled. Thanks for your help.
Castle - yes. The flyer (bit where yarn happens) is above the drivewheel (big wheel). It's also a doubledrive (two drivebands) wheel.
It's hard to date it exactly as technology changed in different parts of the world, but I suspect it's post the mid-1800s. Something about it gives the feel of the 1920s and Arts and Craft movement (which is a brilliant time for spinning wheels!). But it's difficult to date as spinning wheel designs didn't change much until the late 1930s. Did you find it in North America?
Something about the design is tickling my memory and I think I've seen something by this maker in the magazine The Spinning Wheel Sluth. Are there any maker marks or the like on the wheel? Underneath the treadle or bench? You may need a UV light to find any writing on the wood.
The part that holds the flyer (maiden barrings) would usually be made of leather. Is the part left in the hole soft-ish? You can cut up an old belt to make some new barrings.
Distaff - it doesn't have a place for one, but they weren't very common by that time in North America. Depending on the culture, the distaff could be freestanding or hand held. Or not used at all if working with mostly wool.
The size of the orifice suggests it was used for either flax or for fine yarns for clothing.
It looks like everything else is there, it just needs a tune up. Get some light machine oil like sewing machine or spinning wheel oil. Also some sort of wax or wood oil for the wood.
Thanks so much for the swift reply! A woman for whom I clean is tasking me with pricing it. She’s 78 and grew up in the Loire Valley. But she’s fairly certain this was her grandmother’s, who may have gotten it England or France. She was thinking nineteen teens or so as well. I just wanted to make sure pieces weren’t broken or missing. Thanks for the tips!!
Diego Footer on Permaculture Based Homesteads - from the Eat Your Dirt Summit