Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Relax, It's Fine

You know that extra curly bit of oddness I showed you yesterday? Well it relaxed in the water and now it's fine. No, really!

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The relaxed and s-m-o-o-t-h skein in the front is the very same one I showed you yesterday when it was all uptight and the new one shown in the back. The only thing I did was to wash it. I didn't even have to weight it. It now hangs PERFECTLY. It is not unbalanced at all. I don't get it.

What say all you spinning gurus? Why is the plyed yarn reacting like it does when it first comes off the niddy noddy, despite becoming perfectly balanced after washing? If you don't know yourself but have an experienced friend who might, could you send them over to my blog please? I mean, I'm relieved to know the yarn is fine, but I would like to know what causes this peculiar situation.

The only anomaly I can think of is that the singles sat on the bobbins for well over a month before being plyed. I let it sit on the advice of "The Spindling Scott", Judy, who suggested it might solve my problem with the yarn biasing when knitted into a swatch. I thought letting it sit would calm the singles? Perhaps it DID calm the singles and the corkscrewing is from the energy added in the plying process being out of sync with the now set singles? Did the water bring the singles back to life? Did it take some of the energy from the plying? Any ideas?


The Spindling Scot said...

Well I know why it's done it, if that is any use....
Because the original was over spun, then left to relax, the plying now shows more actively, thus curls.
I often get that on a Navajo warp spun very hard.
Washing it takes care of it as you have seen.
Normally if I overspin normal yarn, it is by very little, so the curls don't normally happen. They don't have a chance to as the skein goes into water immediately. (I have a plastic skein tensioner that can be dunked in the water)
I didn't even think that your skein might do that, and I feel a bit guilty now...
Mea culpa, I am so sorry!


Marlene said...

Oh Judy, please don't think that I was blaming you in any way. No, not at all. Just trying to learn through all of this. In my mind all is well that ends well. As long as the finished product is balanced I don't mind one bit if it looks like that fresh off the niddy noddy. A bath did it wonders.

So you figure the singles, left to calm over time, then reacted that way to the more active plying? That is kind of what I was thinking but I don't have the experience to trust my musings. Thanks for your help again!

Carrie said...

That's amazing, that it smoothed out so much! Good for you! See? you did a good job after all. =-)

Michelle said...

Oh thank goodness! Look at how gorgeous it turned out! Smooooooth.

I am so taking notes. LOL

Leigh said...

Hi! I followed the link in your comment on the Spindling Scot's blog.

What gorgeously yummy yarn! I do know that when singles sit on the bobbin for awhile, the twist sets somewhat in them. So if you take "stale" singles and let them twist back on themselves, you don't get an accurate picture of how much plying twist you'll need in order to balance the yarn.

For singles that have been on the bobbin for awhile, Patsy Z recommends discarding the first foot or so and then wetting the singles to re-energize their twist. Letting these twist back on themselves will give you a better idea of how much twist to add while plying. Alternatively, you could use one of Mabel Ross's formulae. Even so, you must be a natural at spinning 'cuz you got it right by feel! Well done!

Tygher Knits said...

I need to show my husband, who is the spinner in this family, this post. He's spun several things and a lot of his yarn has amazing amounts of twist, so maybe this will settle his anxiety about it .. and get him to go ahead and wash the darn stuff so I can play with it!!

Marlene said...

Leigh, I purposely left the singles on the bobbin for a while to correct another problem I had had. In my first skeins with this wool they were perfectly balanced and yet for some odd reason a knitted swatch biased quite a lot. That's when Judy suggested I let the singles sit for a while before plying. I haven't tried knitting with this new skein to see if it has corrected the bias knitting problem.

I've never had any success using formulas or attempting to match the way the yarn twists back on itself. It seems the more technical I try to get, the worse the yarn is. If I just "go with the flow" I seem to have a natural rythmn that makes for very balanced skeins. This is one case where my hands and instinct seem to do better than trying to think it through.

Marlene said...

Your so lucky Tygher, to have a husband who shares a hobby with you. I've been trying to convince my husband to learn wool combing (which was traditionally a man's job), so that he can be my "supplier". So far he isn't showing any interest though.

The Spindling Scot said...

Leigh and I both follow the Mabel Ross spinning system, well on wheels anyway :-)
I'm more freeflow on spindles.
I have asked Leigh if she can think of anything else...
Would you like me to post on Spindlers and the Online Guild WSD for you? There are some ladies there with a serious amount of spinning years.


Marlene said...

Sure Judy, I'd be grateful for any input that might come my way. I find it particularly curious that the first skeins I did a while back hung balanced but produced a very biased knitted swatch. I just don't understand it. I wish I had more time to knit up a swatch of this new one, the one from singles that sat for weeks before plying. That will have to wait until some time after Christmas though, I have too many deadlines looming right now.