Sunday, April 22, 2007

Alpaca spinning

I finished spinning and plying the first half of the Fancy alpaca fiber. I got 196 yards from it. It is very, very nice. When the skein is dry I am going to weigh it to see how much fiber it actually consumed.

I learned several things from this first go round:
  1. Some folks say you don't need to wash alpaca first. If you plan to put it through your drum carder, you do need to wash it first. I am looking a big cleaning job to get all the dirt out of my poor carder.
  2. Alpaca is really nice stuff to spin.
  3. VM missed in the prep work, really slows down the spinning. Better to get as much out as possible before you sit down at the wheel.
  4. If I slow down my treadling, I get softer yarn (ah ha!)
  5. Plying really does hide many issues.
  6. Second cuts suck and should be removed prior to spinning or they make nubs.

1 comment:

The Spinning Guy (Kim) said...

Try taking a vacuum cleaner to your drum carder. It has worked wonders on mine after carding unwashed alpaca -- and I've carded plenty of unwashed alpaca. It won't clean the carder perfectly and it doesn't get all the oils off, but it gets you 80-905 of the way to clean.