Exploring the world of fiber, one draft at a time

My posting can be as frequent or infrequent as my spinning, so be as patient as that fiber, sitting in my stash.

Sunday, June 13, 2004

Spinning laceweight in the grease

I was working on my next to the last batch of the Rambo fleece this morning, picking it before putting it in the cold water soak. And I am finally working on the very best of the fleece. There is one batch left, and as I was picking and sorting, my fingers got very itchy to try and spin some of it. It is very soft and fine, and normally I would try and take some of this prime area and wash the locks to spin a lace weight yarn. I still think it would not be worth the time and effort to lock wash, because the locks have very little intregrity. Also for all of it's softness, I know Rambo is a cross with a merino, and I know merino will poof into yarn much larger than what it first looks like. Still, it was so tempting, I decided to just do some sampling with the locks in the grease.

It worked good, because today is very warm. The locks were not at all sticky.

I used my mini Bosworth spindle which weighs .77 oz. It was a good choice, since it has enough weight to keep spinning, but not enough to pull my fiber out of my hand, and drop.

First sampling was to just take some locks, pull out any VM or tips, elongate the lock some (like predrafting) and spin. I started with the butt end and worked to the tip. There was usually a bit of fluff that I did not include when I finished the lock. My drafting triagle was by no means fine enough to count the individual fibers, but it did let light through :) I spun some singles, checked the WPI and then did a 2 ply. The resulting samples are on the lower part of the card in the picture below.

The second sampling was to take the locks and comb them with a dog comb, doing both ends out, and trying to open the middle of the lock also with the comb. This is still in the grease. I was surprised to find I did not see much difference, in the two yarns. This combed 2 ply could be said to be just a bit smoother, but it was not as thin as the above 2 ply. And I had more trouble spinning the locks after they were combed, which also surprised me.

Sample card of Rambo lace in the grease Posted by Hello

If you look closely, you can see how much the halo the yarns have, even wrapped tight on the card. Along with this, I know the yarn has had alot of bounce in the skeins I have spun so far. None of this has made a decision for me yet for the processing of the final part of this fleece. I think I will be practical, and do it like the rest, and leave the lace spinning for some fleece still hiding in my stash. It's tempting though, because it is a lovely brown color, that would make a great lace scarf.


No comments: