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 A good skein winder
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Manasi
Chatty Knitter

United Kingdom
297 Posts

Posted - 05/11/2006 :  10:19:06 AM  Show Profile  Visit Manasi's Homepage Send Manasi a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I would appreciate any leads to good quality - preferably adjustable skein winders- that any of you may have had experience with.
Thanks :)

My blog: http://yarnahoy.blogspot.com/
My yarns: http://yarnahoy.etsy.com

jimbobspins
Gabber Extraordinaire

463 Posts

Posted - 05/12/2006 :  06:40:53 AM  Show Profile Send jimbobspins a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Well I hope I did the right thing. I just ordered a freestanding Ashford model. It was not too expensive and the store was having a sale, so..... we'll see when I get it, and I'll let you know.

All I know is that using a niddy noddy to empty my full Lendrum plying head bobbin can be slow, boring and tiring on the old arm and elbow. Especially when I have all my bobbins full and I am doing a lot of plying, say filling and emptying that large bobbin 2-3 times in a row. So I hope the skeinwinder will help with that. I am for anything that will speed up the process.

Jim

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arianie
Chatty Knitter

USA
120 Posts

Posted - 05/12/2006 :  3:31:48 PM  Show Profile  Visit arianie's Homepage Send arianie a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I use the Schacht Goko. It is very balanced and easy to use. It is beautiful as well. It is based on the Japanese design for reeling silk yarns. I have many others as well including Majacraft, a Louet yarn blocker that is also used as a warping mill as well as a custom made gigantic warping reel 5 times the size of the Louet. In addition I also use a squirrel cage for unwinding and rounding skeins.

Arie
http://arianie.blogspot.com/


my_lovely_tekoteko
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jimbobspins
Gabber Extraordinaire

463 Posts

Posted - 05/12/2006 :  3:49:17 PM  Show Profile Send jimbobspins a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Arie,

I had wanted to buy a Schact Goko because it is so beautiful. I had been eyeing one for a while. But I was told that it was a yarn swift for unwinding skeins into balls, not a skeinwinder for making skeins, and that is why I did not order it. Tell me how you use it to make skeins. Does it have a crank/handle to turn it?

Jim

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petiteflower
Chatty Knitter

USA
297 Posts

Posted - 05/12/2006 :  3:55:40 PM  Show Profile Send petiteflower a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I have a nice infinitely adjustable (up to 2 yard circumference) skein winder that I bought from carolinahomespun.com. The maker's name is Will Taylor. It is beatifully made, and you can choose from several types of wood. Mine is walnut. My skeinwinder can also be used as a swift, because with the infinite adjustability, you can adjust it to hold any size skein. It was very reasonably priced, I choose the freestanding model which was around $80. There is a model that clamps onto a table that is a little cheaper.

Believe me, a niddy noddy will be eating any skeinwinder's dust!
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arianie
Chatty Knitter

USA
120 Posts

Posted - 05/12/2006 :  5:27:57 PM  Show Profile  Visit arianie's Homepage Send arianie a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Jim

It turns just like a clock skeiner. No it does not have a handle you just turn the wheel and it spins smoothly by itself, the smoothest winder I've ever tried. I love mine and would not part with it. Yes I too thought that it is just for unwinding, but I figured the way it is constructed with all those metal spokes jutting out surely you can always wind them as well. So I called Schacht and customer service said you can indeed do both. I've never looked back; one of the best buys I ever had. Of course I had my engineer husband put it together. He always like putting things together :-)

Talking about Schacht, I have a Matchless DT new wheel in my weaving studio up for sale. I need the space for summer weaving class. One of my students after class failed to pick up her new wheel and did not complete the sale. So it is up for anyone looking to buy a Schacht. Also I have a new collector's edition suzie pro with Majacraft commissioned sunflowers painting and laser etched alpaca. The wood is also custom special made of the most loveliest grain Rimu Heart Wood. You can look it up on my blog where the link says studio shoppe on the sidebar and click on spinning.

Arie
http://arianie.blogspot.com/


my_lovely_tekoteko
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jimbobspins
Gabber Extraordinaire

463 Posts

Posted - 05/13/2006 :  04:50:21 AM  Show Profile Send jimbobspins a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Arie,

Thanks. I wished I would have talked to you before I ordered not only the Ashford skeinwinder, but my big wooden Swedish swift last year! The Goko would work as both, saving space, and from what you say, does both jobs better. I've never really liked my big swift from day one, and I still use my old Japanese metal and plastic one when I can because it is much smoother. I would imagine the Goko is similarly light to the touch. I can hear it now, Goko, Goko, Goko, Goko....... :-)

Manasi,

Check out the Shacht Goko. They are really nice. I am considering calling the place I ordered through and seeing if I can make a change, and selling my big swift as well.

Petiteflower,

Did you mean any skeinwinder will be eating any niddy noddys dust?

Jim
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Manasi
Chatty Knitter

United Kingdom
297 Posts

Posted - 05/13/2006 :  09:32:43 AM  Show Profile  Visit Manasi's Homepage Send Manasi a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Hi folks! Thanks for your kind replies. I called Carolina Homespun y'day & I think I shall be ordering a Fricke skein winder. I'm SO excited!!
My niddy-noddy was certainly breaking my arms!


My blog: http://yarnahoy.blogspot.com/
My yarns: http://yarnahoy.etsy.com
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petiteflower
Chatty Knitter

USA
297 Posts

Posted - 05/13/2006 :  3:18:42 PM  Show Profile Send petiteflower a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Dear Jim,

OK, you are peeling down a dirt road in your new jalopy. You are passing all the horse-and-buggys and leaving them behind in a cloud of dust.

Now, replace jalopy with skeinwinder, and replace horse-and-buggy with niddy noddy.
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jimbobspins
Gabber Extraordinaire

463 Posts

Posted - 05/14/2006 :  11:45:33 AM  Show Profile Send jimbobspins a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Hi Petiteflower,

You mean the skeinwinder needs gasoline to run?

Isn't that dangerous? :-)

Jim





Jim
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petiteflower
Chatty Knitter

USA
297 Posts

Posted - 05/14/2006 :  6:35:39 PM  Show Profile Send petiteflower a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Dear Jim, OK, OK, you're right, OK, it's more like this: you are peeling down a dirt road in your new solar powered car (it's the year 2030). You are passing all of the combustion engine cars just as they are in the midst of running out of the last gasoline on the planet, and leaving them behind in a cloud of dust.

Now, replace solar-powered car with skein winder, and replace combustion car with niddy noddy.

Actually, I doubt that niddy noddys will ever be as obsolete as combustion engine cars will someday be. I think they are probably useful whenever you need a fairly portable skeinwinding tool. And I am sure that there are those who just plain enjoy using one. Otherwise, why would you possibly use one?

A skeinwinder is a very simple tool, has probably been around in some form since shortly after the invention of the wheel, and yet it can do the same job that a niddy noddy does in the wink of an eye. OK, skeinwinder is to niddy noddy as wink-of-an-eye is to afternoon nap.
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jimbobspins
Gabber Extraordinaire

463 Posts

Posted - 05/17/2006 :  09:50:11 AM  Show Profile Send jimbobspins a Private Message  Reply with Quote
So I got the Ashford Skeinwinder. Unh. Nothing to write home about. I assumed that for such a simple device I could safely buy it site unseen. Well you know the first three letters in the word assume and you and me :-)

Since it was a special order and I like the merchant I won't return it. Especially after having glued together the parts as per the included instructions! My biggest gripe is the warped base which makes the whole thing wobble. I fixed it with a thicker rubber foot, but still. I emailed Ashford, we'll see if they respond. Maybe they will send me a new base.

Manasi, I think you will like the Fricke. Ironicaly that is the skeinwnder they use in the store where I bought the Ashford, but they don't sell them anymore.

Petiteflower and Arie, now I really wished I would have went with the Will Taylor or the Schact Goko.

Oh well,

Jim
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Manasi
Chatty Knitter

United Kingdom
297 Posts

Posted - 05/18/2006 :  10:14:56 AM  Show Profile  Visit Manasi's Homepage Send Manasi a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Jim,
Carolina Homespun told me they use Fricke & they like it. It was a bit pricey but I'm starting to hate my niddy noddy (falls apart all the time) & i really didn't want to fight with a skein winding device anymore...
I'm still to receive the winder tho'.

My blog: http://yarnahoy.blogspot.com/
My yarns: http://yarnahoy.etsy.com
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yarnmama
Seriously Hooked

880 Posts

Posted - 05/18/2006 :  6:40:13 PM  Show Profile  Visit yarnmama's Homepage Send yarnmama a Private Message  Reply with Quote
We make the ones we sell if anyone is interested in a swift/adjustable skeinwinder.

Catherine Harrison
owner of Knitting Notions:Kettle Dyed yarns, Hardwood yarn swifts and more
http://www.knittingnotionsonline.com
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jimbobspins
Gabber Extraordinaire

463 Posts

Posted - 06/07/2006 :  7:16:59 PM  Show Profile Send jimbobspins a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Well, Ashford responded to my email very quickly and sent me a new base for my skeinwinder. Perfectly flat and it does not wobble. I have to say, excellent customer service on the part of Ashford.

Jim
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Manasi
Chatty Knitter

United Kingdom
297 Posts

Posted - 06/16/2006 :  08:12:46 AM  Show Profile  Visit Manasi's Homepage Send Manasi a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I'm using my Fricke skein winder. It works well. I just wish it had a crank instead of a knob. The base is not very heavy, so if I turn the winder fast, it wobbles. I may have to weigh it down somehow.

My blog: http://yarnahoy.blogspot.com/
My yarns: http://yarnahoy.etsy.com
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Yuki
New Pal

USA
42 Posts

Posted - 06/19/2006 :  1:08:40 PM  Show Profile  Visit Yuki's Homepage Send Yuki a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Manasi,

How is your Fricke skein winder? Which model did you get? Were you able to sturdy it? Does it also work as a swift?


Yuki
Brooklyn Bee
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Manasi
Chatty Knitter

United Kingdom
297 Posts

Posted - 06/20/2006 :  07:46:09 AM  Show Profile  Visit Manasi's Homepage Send Manasi a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Hi Yuki,
I bought the less expensive of the 2 Fricke skein winders. It's not adjustable - the skeins are 2 yards.
I'm a lazy bum so instead of spending good time at really steadying the winder, I just clamp it down with my foot. It works. I guess it would work well as a swift ONLY if your skeins were 2 yards long. I have a separate wooden swift for that purpose.
The little knob you grab for winding tends to grate & sqeak if you don't oil it frequently.
:)

My blog: http://yarnahoy.blogspot.com/
My yarns: http://yarnahoy.etsy.com
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petiteflower
Chatty Knitter

USA
297 Posts

Posted - 06/22/2006 :  7:54:30 PM  Show Profile Send petiteflower a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I hope I can impart some information without giving the impression that I am "rubbing it in" to Manasi about her Fricke skein winder purchase. I know first hand that it is difficult to choose tools sight unseen.

But I do have to say that the Will Taylor free standing skein winder does not tip AT ALL. It does not achieve it's stability with weight, it is not at all a heavy item, but it is just plainly well designed and well balanced. It does not wander around either. It has little bits of rubber on its feet. The handle is very comfortable too. And the adjustability factor is something that I would not want to be without. It is a very simple no-brainer design feature. For $80 you can have a skein winder that can be sat on a table, the floor, any room of the house, outside. And you can wind any size skein you want up to 2 yards. You can wind a skein that is precisely 37.496857392 inches if you so choose. And then, when you wash the skein and it's circumference shrinks, you can stick it back on the skein winder, adjusting it to snugly hold your wonderfully unique skein, and then use the skein winder as a swift as you wind your skein into a ball. And this skein winder is very easy on the eyes. It is simple and elegant and very nicely crafted in the wood of your choice. And I am not related to or in any way affiliated with Will Taylor, I just really really love my skein winder!
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Feorlen
New Pal

USA
38 Posts

Posted - 06/23/2006 :  11:05:23 AM  Show Profile  Visit Feorlen's Homepage Send Feorlen a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I have the Will Taylor free-standing skeiner. I used a niddy for a long time but when I started the COE stuff I needed something that would make better skeins. I coated the pegs in clear nail polish so I could use it as a lightweight yarn blocker also. I wouldn't recommend it for regular use as a blocker as too much exposure to water ruins the wood finish. But it's a great skeiner. I did some really delicate yarns and I had no problems with it. Sometimes after blocking I would lay the skeiner on it's back on the floor and use it like a swift to get the yarn off without damaging it.

I was looking for something adjustable and didn't cost a fortune but worked well. I don't need a ton of fancy equipment, particularly something that takes up a lot of space. Most of the time I take it apart and it lives in the closet. It doesn't hurt at all that Will is a great guy and a member of my guild.

Feorlen's High Fiber Diet: http://www.spinnyspinny.com
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natashafialkov
New Pal

USA
21 Posts

Posted - 07/21/2006 :  5:36:44 PM  Show Profile  Visit natashafialkov's Homepage Send natashafialkov a Private Message  Reply with Quote
i have a mama bear swift/winder that looks really similar to one i see above from the oreganwoodworker.com. it sits on a table and it adjustable and works really really well. i spin for a living so the pegs in it are starting to bow, otherwise it works great. i have to wind sock yarn that comes in a 1/2 pound skein into 2-1/4 lb skeins so i had to get another and got the table clamping one from carolinahomespun that is adjustable and is nice. my main issue is that most of the tables in my house are too thick to accomodate the clamp.
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