In light of the many orders that I have to fill in the coming week, hubby decided to try to make my job of skeining and reskeining 100 hanks of yarn a bit easier by building me an electric skein winder. Retail, these things go for about $300 and the company just can't pay for that yet, so my very sophisticated method thus far has been to tie an end of yarn from the cone, after running it through my yardage counter, to my umbrella swift and reaching over into the middle and spinning the swift while attempting to keep an eye on the counter. A very awkward PIA, not to mention a very slow process.(Here is Rachel -- in pj's -- demonstrating the re-skeining from ball to swift. Ug.)
So, armed with various widths of lumber and a $20 ancient sewing machine from the Goodwill store, he began his mission.
This was the fun part -- pulling the sewing machine apart (yes, I plugged it in to be sure it worked b4 I bought it).
The biggest problem has been finding/creating pulleys that will fit on the motor, and devising a workable drive band. He finally arrived at this...
a design that works great! One problem, tho -- the old motor just can't handle the job. Can you say "smoke"? Even so, this set-up has allowed me to wind skeins of yarn off the cones manually MUCH faster that the old method with my swift, so I am a happy girl! Jim is still going to try to hunt down a workable motor (any suggestions will be gladly received) but until then, I'm rockin'.
Unfortunately, no actual dyeing got done today -- my little guy is home sick, possibly with strep, as that is running rampantly through his school. I sooo hope not. But, he kinda needed me near him today, so I only broke away at times to wind off yarn, and otherwise sat with him and knit. Rachel's last butterfly sock is almost done (pics tomorrow). I also managed to package up about 15 ebay sales packages, and FINALLY put a box together for One Planet Yarn and Fiber. If you were a fan of the Macintosh or Grand Canyon yarn, be looking for it there soon!