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Old 04-17-2007, 07:11 PM   #1
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Drafting Despair
I've been spinning fairly well on a bottom whorl drop spindle for a week or two, when I got the spinning books I'd ordered in the mail today.

I broke out one of my top whorl spindles and set about learning to use it.

I am UTTERLY incapable of drafting. I realize now that the way I've gotten by with the bottom whorl is by splitting the roving into strips the size I wanted beforehand (pencil roving?) and just predrafting, then spinning.

But now that I've actually TRIED drafting, I've discovered how much I can't do it. I looked at some videos, but when they draft, it's nice and even and simple as pie. When I draft (or try to), I end up with a big wad of tangled fiber in my hand, and soon in the trash, and a lot of frustrated exclamations.

Even when I'm pinching off the twist, it runs up into the undrafted fiber! And the few times it doesn't, when I slide my fingers up to pinch off at a new place, the twist I was holding below runs up into the stuff I don't want it to.

Is this one of those things where it will just "come to me" after I've been doing it for a while? Because the way it was going today, I might just be sticking with splitting my roving up into really thin strips, rather than wrestle with tangled fiber for an hour and have nothing to show but trashed roving.
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Old 04-18-2007, 09:10 AM   #2
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I'm told thats one of the things that will come to you with practice. I like to draft mine first as its easier for me, but I think it depends on what your spinning. I've been spinning with Top which is so easy to just draft and spin. Sorry I'm not a lot of help I'm still new to spinning as well.

Good luck!
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Old 04-18-2007, 03:59 PM   #3
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It will get easier! It really depends on the fiber too. I do a lot of pre-drafting -- especially when I'm spindle-spinning -- because I just like the spinning part to go as quickly as I can manage. Once in a while you'll come across a fiber that's so well-prepared it needs no absolute dream. :D
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Old 04-24-2007, 11:49 AM   #4
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There's nothing wrong with pre-drafting to the point that you almost don't have to draft when you're spinning. Spinning the wool is easier if the fiber is well prepared. I promise... the lighter and fluffier it is, the easier the spinning is.

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Old 04-24-2007, 05:46 PM   #5
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I do split my wide roving into narrow strips first, but I also draft while spinning. I use a low whorl spindle, and after I have wound on all of my yarn I just spun, I start to spin a new length of yarn by park and draft-ing for the first six or eight inches, then giving it a good spin and I can then use both hands to draft. But that first little bit I have to park to do. I also only work with a handful of fiber at a time so it doesn't get away from me. Fiber preparation does make a difference, too. And fibers with more kink are harder to draft than straight fibers, IMO. (Silk, llama, merino, etc. are much easier than some of the kinkier, coarses wools.)Have you tried spinning from the fold? That might help.
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Old 04-30-2007, 07:25 PM   #6
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I still predraft mine to have mangeable amounts to handle.
imo there is nothing wrong with it at all.
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Old 05-01-2007, 10:47 PM   #7
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I have never learned to properly draft, I just do what is called a "woolen" draft, and it works for me. I also predraft quite a bit, just to keep things movings.

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