Over the past several days I have been carefully weighing the idea of a Spinolution Mach II as my 2nd wheel. My skein of lavendar Corriedale 2-ply wool is really large. After finishing it came in at 230 yds from 1 bobbin! An endearing feature to say the least. Look, Ma, no ends to weave!
This is the v. quick knit Birthday Cowl by Nova Seals (free to you here). I am 3 rows short of the end, and still have a fair-sized ball of yarn. I am knitting it with 5mm needles at a gauge of 4st per 1″. The yarn is so soft, and mostly bouncy. The thinner areas are over-plied but I’m not fussed about it with this pattern at all. Here’s a close-up:
Hopefully the garter edge will lay flat on blocking. I’d also like the yarn-overs (holes) to show more.
Speaking of blocking… it pains me to post this but here’s the Antrhopologie shrug I made from the California Red 2-ply. Things are not improved in the fit department:
Far be it from me to hide my FO fail/ ugh… Learned my lesson on stashing fibre in quantity!
So, the Mach II spins in 1:10 ratio demonstrably well. What gave me pause?
- Spinning group was underwhelmed. Cool, utterly frank comments included, “It’s not the prettiest thing is it?”; and, “I wouldn’t buy that wheel.” I do have good reasons but they were politely silent. I have lived in Canada long enough to catch the drift on polite silence… Yes, this wheel is out there. If I get it, I better like it because resale is looking decidedly dim.
- The higher ratios. On testing them, I found the treadling is much, much heavier. And my right ankle isn’t exactly 100% sound.
- Sheer size. It’s heavy, and cumbersome. If I go through with the Master Spinner’s course next summer, I will need to cart a wheel around. This won’t be that wheel.
- Single drive system – Scotch tension. I like ST but do want room to learn & use other drive systems. My Wee Peggy can go double drive – is that enough?
When I started down this road, I assumed this would be a 2nd wheel; end of story. Now the issues (especially nos. 3 & 4) make this look like a gateway drug. I’m brainstorming & researching hard to see if it could work/ how. Fact is, the out-of-the-box capability of the Mach II has caught my attention.
It is unconventional. Maybe I am too.