Monday, September 26, 2016

Baa Baa Black Sheep Have You any Wool?


Fall is the perfect time for carding wool -- Outside, so the bits of grass and hay and other debris left in the raw washed wool can fall outside.

 This is the carding machine.  Basically the point is to comb the wool fleece, and to get all the fibers going in the same direction.  Also helps to fluff things up, and make it easier to spin.  This carding machine makes the work go a whole lot faster than using the hand combs (basically these are kind of like dog brushes -- That's what the carding cloth is like : Lots of metal needles that combs the wool.

You lay the raw washed wool in the feeder tray and turn the crank.  It pulls the fibers onto the rollers.  The small roller sorts out the shorter fibers -- the ones you may not want to keep, while letting the longer staples through to the bigger roller.  After a while, the big roller fills up, and you can peel off the fluffy newly combed batt :

I worked at it for about 3 hours -- great exercise for upper-body strength, and have a box of newly carded wool ready for spinning.

Detail of one of the newly carded batts.
Like soft clouds!

All that work, and I still have 2/3 of that fleece to process.

1 comment:

The Idaho Beauty said...

And here I was envisioning you with those hand combs . . . ;-)