To complete this BB, the minimum requirements are:
- make a simple drop spindle
- it can be a top whorl spindle or a bottom whorl spindle (it can even be a Turkish spindle)
- spin a few yards on your new spindle to test it
To document your completion of the BB, provide proof of the following as pictures or a video (less than two minutes):
- the materials are starting with
- an in-progress photo (drilling a hole or assembling the spindle)
- the finished spindle
I made this spindle a few years back, so didn't take a huge number of photos, but hopefully it's enough!
I decided to copy the shape and size of a historical spindle from Scandinavia (can't remember which find it was, and it seems I didn't keep any notes other than a reference image which is now turning up no reverse image search results!). The spindle itself is made from Pittosporumwood, which is a NZ native which is lovely to work with, relatively strong, resistant to splitting, and easy to get a hold of when folks are trimming their hedges. The spindle was turned on an electric lathe, and finished with hand tools (carved hooks into both ends for ease of use). The spindle whorl was carved from a piece of limestone I picked up at a beach. I severely blunted a chisel, clogged my rasp, and damaged the chuck of my hand drill working this piece of stone, but I felt pretty good about it in the end. It's relatively balanced, and spins alright. I had to seal it with grapeseed oil to prevent it from shedding chalk everywhere.
It works fine to spin up a bit of yarn! I will admit that I've generally stuck to the wheel as it's faster, but I often think of a former coworker who'd knit or use the drop spindle during meetings as a way of 'getting at least one thing done!' during time that sometimes didn't seem very productive.
My kids always want to play with my spindle. So, I made them each their own spindles. I must say, I love the large wheel on these, as I can get it spinning and it spins long enough for me to draft a few times. (Yes, I couldn't resist playing using with their toys tools).
I used a wooden dowel, wooden circles, hide glue (gelatin+water) and a lot of sanding!
The hide glue is working very nicely. I mixed it with a little sawdust from all the drilling and sanding. I've accidently dropped (and once flung) the spindle across the floor, and it's held up well. I think it will hold up well against my children's use of them, too!
I figured if medieval kids could have spindles and yarn for toys, mine could, too!
This evening I made a drop spindle. I am currently processing some gleaned wool and wanted to make one to spin it, once I'm done carding. I've yet to finish processing it but, after spending some time on here, I noticed that there were BBs for this process and so here I am.
I used a piece of alder that I'd harvested from the local woodlands to make the whorl. I cut two chunks off of this - I wasn't sure yet which weight I wanted to use - and drilled them to 7mm. The spindle is made from a piece of commercial dowel that I had lying around, it is 7.7mm and, with a bit of persuasion, I managed to seat the whorl onto this. The brass hook I had in a box of "bits that will be useful" (and it was!)
No glue was needed for this build.
When my wool has been carded I will update this post/add another reply and submit it for certification.
The breath is your anchor to the present moment.
Hi Luke, It looks like this BB is ready for submission. If/when you change it to a BB submission, I'll be happy to certify it.
Oh great, thanks! I was waiting to spin a few yards of wool with it as I thought this was a requirement. I am intending to use it when my wool is ready anyway - and I'll be submitting that as another BB.
So, the spindle works! I'm still pretty bad at using it (and I think the wool that I gleaned is pretty rough with a very "short staple") but I've managed to get some lumpy, chunky yarn. I'm going to continue practicing before I try for the other BB. I think perhaps I am going to need to buy some fleece to learn with.