Wednesday, June 26, 2013

The Apron Turns! We Feed it Wool! We Eat Pizza! We Drink Beer!

Picked up the new shaft for the apron yesterday. I went to a different machinist from the first one and it was about half the price this time.

We picked the apron apart, took out the previous shaft, put in the new shaft, and put it all back together again. Then we turned the machine on and watched the apron move---oh so slowly you could barely discern movement. But, that's how fast it is supposed to feed. So its working!

Here I am waiting for the wool to feed

Fed a chunk of wool through the carder. Not much came out the other end. And, without the doffer comb running, its not possible to get it off the doffer. Well, actually, the shop vac helped remove what little there was from the doffer.

Afterwards, we had pizza and beer and planned out trip to Wisconsin, tentatively scheduled for next week, to visit the Wagners at Hidden Valley Woolen Mill.

Pizza and Great Beer on the Apron

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Watching the Carder Run

Today we worked on putting the finishing touches on the feeder. We put the apron on, added a chain and then fired the carder up only to find out that the apron would not turn! DRAT!

Turns out we need to drive the apron from the front shaft, not the hind shaft (which apparently worked fine for the previous owner, but NOT FOR ME). So, I'll be off to a machinist tomorrow to have yet another shaft machined with a longer end so that we can hang a sprocket on it to turn it.

In the meantime, sit back and enjoy the video below of the rest of the carder running! We did.

Things we need to do:

  • Get a new shaft machined for the feeder
  • Set up the doffer comb
  • Set up the drafter
  • Set up the can coiler
  • Set up the picker (monster project from Hades!)
  • Tour Fairibault Woolen Mill
  • Tour Hidden Valley Woolen Mill and pick Carol's and Paul's brains
  • Have another beer or two or three
  • Wash up another 300 lbs of that 500 lbs of wool I bought last fall
  • there must be more but I just can't think of it