Working with Wool Part. 2 Combing and carding

Step 1 Combing your wool

Now that your wool is washed and dried, it’s time to comb. Combing your wool really helps in getting your wool cleaned from any leftover Vegetative Matter. (You can skip this step if you have clean wool, if you’d like and go right to carding.)

To begin, take a lock of wool and put it on one of your combs,and run your empty comb through your wool, flipping your comb after each pass through, like pictured below:

Once all your wool is off the comb you started with and onto the other, removing any small pieces of wool left on your comb. Keep doing this until your happy with how clean your wool is. To remove your wool you have two options, one is to just take the whole thing off in one piece or, you can make combed top by running it through a diz (we use a sewing machine bobbin as a diz and it works well) as you take it off, like pictured below:

If you do it this way, you are ready to spin your wool into yarn, if not it’s time to card.

Step 2: Carding your wool

There are two different ways to card, either with hand cards or a drum carder. We have done it both ways and prefer drum carding.

We’ll start with using hand cards: Spread the wool on the left card, with the shorn ends at the top of the card. Take the right hand card and lay it in the center of the left hand card, facing opposite directions. Draw the right hand card away from you. Repeat this several times until the fiber begins to align themselves. When the fibers are well aligned lay the right hand card on your knee, and with the handles in the same direction, brush away from yourself. This puts the wool all on your right hand card. Switch cards and repeat this several time. Roll the wool off the card. Your wool is ready to spin into yarn!

Drum carding: Put wool on the feeder in front of the little drum, turn the handle to feed the wool through onto the big drum. Keep adding more wool until your big drum is full and fibers are aligned. To remove your wool from your drum, turn your handle until the groove in your big drum is on top. Next, run a knitting needle down the groove, pulling up to separate the wool. Fold the off the drum turning the handle the opposite direction of the way you did when carding. Once your batt is off, divide it into three inch pieces.

Run it through on piece at a time, once your finished running it through the second time, it’s time to take it off and spin it!

Again there are two ways to take your wool off the drum. First is to take it off just like you did when you took it off to run it through the second time, in one big batt. The second is to make roving out of it by using a diz pictured below:

Making roving: To make roving you start at one end of the drum put your knitting needle in the groove about a 1/2 inch and pull put breaking your wool apart. Put your wool through your diz using a crochet hook. Gently pull your wool through your diz and off your drum, turning your drum as you go. Keep working your way across the drum. Once your finished, roll your roving into a ball and your ready to spin!

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