Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Which wheel?

I had no idea there would be so many choices in spinning wheels! I've been doing a lot of reading, and I've pretty much decided I want a folding wheel. It would be fun to be able to take it with me when I want spin, and the compact size would be convenient for storage. I found a great side by side comparison on four different models at The Woolery. I've seen the Ashford Joy, and Melissa's Kromski Sonata in action, and I think I've narrowed it down to these two. They both weigh about the same, despite the taller height of the Kromski. (which I find attractive, since I'm a tall guy) Aesthetically, I like the look of the Kromski. I noticed the Kromski has bigger bobbins. I'm assuming this means you can spin more yarn before you have to change bobbins? (in this case, does size matter?) I also like the fact that it is made of real wood, and not plywood and laminated MDF.

Sounds like I've made up my mind, doesn't it? OK, here's the one thing I think I don't like. I really think I want a single treadle wheel. I took a day long spinning class once a couple of years ago, and I couldn't tell you now if the wheel I used was a single or double treadle. At the risk of sounding vulgar, I can't imagine myself sitting for any length of time with my legs that close together. (oh dear, have I said too much..... again) I'm sorry, but I just don't sit that way. (at least not comfortably for any length of time)

I guess it all boils down to a test drive. I'm sure Melissa would let me take her wheel out for a spin, and we have a single treadle Joy at Knitch that I can try. Also, if I do buy the Joy, I can buy it at Knitch. If I buy a Sonata, I'll have to send away for it. Decisions, decisions. At this point I would welcome any feedback at all.

Despite all the spinning wheel shopping, I have been doing some knitting. I finally frogged back the sleeves of my Cobblestone sweater, (I made them too long), and reattached them to the body. see......

So it's back to knitting garter stitch in the round. And what's more fun than holding two pounds of wool in your lap when the temperature is 80-something outside. Now I understand why y'all knit socks!


Phyl said...

I just got the Louet Julia. It's very similar to the Victoria but a little larger. It doesn't fold up but is very lightweight and I felt that if I wanted to take it places I could pick it up and put it in the back seat of my truck, seatbelted in. It's a fairly new model that Louet came out with, about a month ago or so.
You don't have to oil it as all the rotating parts run on ball bearings & it does come apart if I wanted to remove the lower part and put the whole thing in a large duffle or something.
It also came with a free lazy kate + 4 bobbins. Such a deal!

The BIG plus:It's very comfortable, for me, and I can actually spin on it and the end result was something that actually resembles yarn!

Good luck in your decision making process. I"m sure which ever you decide on you will have lots of fun with.

Hockey Mom said...

I love my Joy. And the orifice height really doesn't matter, it's all a matter of posture baby!

But either way, we can't wait to have you sitting with us at a spin-in! Woo hoo!

Pixiepurls said...

the only point in getting double tredle is if you can't stand "the dead spot" and some doubles are actually FAKE doubles and still have the dead spot! I just use my hand if it gets stuck... tho I have a double and it shouldn't stick but it does, so yeah.. I don't think it matters at all!

Jane said...

I have a double treadle Ashford Traveller, and the single treadle Joy, and love them both. I tried the Louet Jilia, and even with the orifice set at its highest point, found it uncomfortably short for me. But really, you just have to try the ones you think you want, because for everything I don't like about a wheel, someone loves it for the same reason. I can bring my Joy on Thursday evening if you want to try it. Or just give the one in the closet a spin (but put that grommet back on before you do.)

Anonymous said...

I have a Kromski Minstrel and I absolutely love it. It has a double treadle, but I can use it single treadle if I want, so the Sonata might be similar, since it's made by the same company.

I will say that I /love/ my Minstrel and while it's not a folding wheel, it travels well just strapped into the seat next to me.

Knits4Bears said...

I wanted to get a Minstrel or Mazurka because I liked the look of them, but I'm probably leaning toward the Sonata too since it has more flexibility. Now I just need to wait for the funds to accumulate in my 'wheel fund'.

katey said...

Just my $0.02...

I have a new Schacht Ladybug that I love, it's a true double treadle and the treadles are huge so you could treadle with both feet whilst still letting air "circulate" if you know what I mean.

I've also had a Louet Victoria and an Ashford Traditional, both of which were lovely wheels and I would have kept both if I had the space and the spare cash.

Another wheel you might want to look at is a brand new one called the Spinolution Mach 1. Designed by a man, it's a double treadle as well, but there's definitely room to "breathe" with that one as well.

All that said, I'd definitely recommend that you either visit a shop with lots of wheels for you to try (like Earth Guild) or come to spinning guild tomorrow and try some wheels.)