The Knit Knack's Blog

Better living through fibre

A little out there

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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?

  1. 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.
  2. The higher ratios. On testing them, I found the treadling is much, much heavier.  And my right ankle isn’t exactly 100% sound.
  3. 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.
  4. 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.

Author: iriegemini

Lara is originally from Jamaica, living in the Greater Toronto Area with N, and a cat, Melvin. She knits, spins, weaves, and is a chatterbox on all of the above. Lara's journey began as a young girl with her Grandmother's cross-stitch embroidery stash & blessing.

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