Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Answers to Questions, and a Correction

In a comment on an earlier post, Peg asked, "On your large skeins, how many figure-of-eight ties do you make and how many yards do you put in a group?"

First, I must apologize and confess that in the previous post, I misstated the size of the skeins. I needed 4900 yds of each warp color, but divided that into two skeins per color because I usually warp with 4 ends at a time, so 4 skeins (which yields 4 cones) is what I want to work with in the dye-pot. That makes each of the warp skeins 2450 yds, not 4900 yds. Sorry for the confusion! I don't think I would try to handle skeins much larger than 3000 yds (the biggest I've dyed, and about the max for manageability, IMO).

In any case, it doesn't matter how big (in # yds) the skein is, I always put 4 ties on it, one between each pair of arms (4 total) on my motorized winder. I use a simple figure-of-eight tie, as you can see in this picture of one of the warp skeins posing nicely on my umbrella swift, waiting for the cone-winder (aka pirn-winder) to cool down. Each loop of the tie encloses about half of the skein.

And here's one of the 100/2 weft skeins, all 20 gm and 1100 yds of it. Same tie, just smaller loops:

My belief (based on woeful experience) is that the more loops of the tie, the more opportunity for the loops either to make a resist line or to tug the skein out of alignment and cause tangles. The fewer of both of those things the better.

Every once in a great while, a skein misbehaves, and after fighting for hours to get it onto a cone gracefully and with as few knots and as little cursing as I can manage, I wish that I'd done something different during handling, but that rarely equates to "I sure wish I'd used more ties!" More often it boils down to "I should have wound/handled/rinsed more carefully!" Meaning, it was my own damn fault, not the yarn's.

1 comment:

Peg in South Carolina said...

Thank you for your answer. I wouldn't dare divide those skeins only in half or they would surely misbehave!