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 Spinning with Spindles
 Top Whorl Spindles
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Koinonia
New Pal

USA
18 Posts

Posted - 07/26/2011 :  07:19:03 AM  Show Profile Send Koinonia a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I'm thinking on purchasing a top-whorl spindle. What should I look for in this spindle? Weight? Length of shaft?
I want a spindle for ease and practice...being attractive doesn't hurt either. Thought about a Avi Wasserman Spindle...any reviews on his spindles? It's been so long since I've done any type of spinning. I have a spinning wheel however, to sit still for so long hurts my back!
Thanks in advance!

Kade1301
Permanent Resident

France
1438 Posts

Posted - 07/27/2011 :  05:34:07 AM  Show Profile  Visit Kade1301's Homepage Send Kade1301 a Private Message  Reply with Quote
The spindle weight depends on the yarn you want to spin with it. But as a general-purpose, first spindle I'd recommend one in the 1-oz-range (unless you are sure you only want to spin laceweight and cobweb - then go much lower than that). I'm also a big fan of rim-weighted spindles (weight on the outside of the whorl - classic examples are the Goldings with the brass ring and a cut-out motiv in the center, the Bosworths, the Woolly Designs with the cut-out center and the large, thin whorls, or, even better, the Woolly Designs Fancy Spindles) with a large whorl in relation to their weight (at the same weight they spin longer than small, thick whorls). Of course, all the theory flies out the window if I just fall in love with a spindle.

I don't know Avi Wasserman spindles, but from the pictures I've seen in Spin-Off ads they should be fine. In any case, don't worry too much about which one will be the first one - spindles love company so it won't stay alone for long ;)

The other thing is that the longer you spin, the more you'll realize you can spin with nearly everything - the way I see it, it's the beginner who needs the very best quality (with the corresponding price tag, unfortunately). So treat yourself to the spindle you really want - it'll make learning to spindle so much easier...

Happy spindling! Klara



http://www.lahottee.info
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Luann
Permanent Resident

USA
2674 Posts

Posted - 07/27/2011 :  11:11:52 AM  Show Profile  Visit Luann's Homepage Send Luann a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I learned to spin on a Steve Paulson spindle in a class, and liked it so much I bought it on the spot. He's obsessive about the balance and the woods are gorgeous. The very best thing is that it's square, so it can't roll away if you drop it!

http://www.spindlewoodco.com/index.html

Luann

Knit and let knit!
http://www.luannocracy.blogspot.com
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Katheroni
Permanent Resident

USA
1407 Posts

Posted - 07/30/2011 :  10:59:30 AM  Show Profile Send Katheroni a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I started with a Hound spindle, made by Greensleeves in Utah. It is still my favorite top whorl, hands down.

But really? Just get something mid-weight, midsize, and with a good, long spin (rim-weighted). If you do that, you won't go wrong. No fancy designers required. Although there's nothing wrong with the more expensive spindles at all, the beauty they offer is not strictly necessary to the function.
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weekendknitter
New Pal

3 Posts

Posted - 08/20/2011 :  10:29:36 AM  Show Profile  Visit weekendknitter's Homepage Send weekendknitter a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I recently began trying to learn how to spin again as well and it's actually working out this time! I think the suggestions you have here are fabulous. Don't have much to add except that I had a few spindles from years ago from Greensleeves. One was their Barebones and the other was a Lady Barbara. The Barebones was probably the better weight for a beginner, but it had no notch. I had the most difficult time trying to keep the singles from coming off the hook and the spindle flying all over the place. Then, I saw a tutorial on knitty about how to DIY a notch for a notchless spindle using your spun leader. It was a big help should you go the student grade route and end up with one of those issues. I have seen some more expensive brands without notches too though. So, it just might be a good article to check out, just in case.

http://weekendknitter.com
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Katheroni
Permanent Resident

USA
1407 Posts

Posted - 08/21/2011 :  11:07:35 AM  Show Profile Send Katheroni a Private Message  Reply with Quote
The Barebones I bought two years ago has a notch, for what that's worth. Also, Greensleeves will notch any of their notchless spindles for you. It was easy for me, since I lived nearby. It may not be worth the hassle for others.]

Or using your leader to help hold the yarn in place can work, as you found weekendknitter. I prefer a notch, myself, but that works too.
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