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 Spinning Angora
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knitegrity
Chatty Knitter

255 Posts

Posted - 10/06/2006 :  05:18:52 AM  Show Profile Send knitegrity a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I was gifted some angora fiber and wondered where to begin. Someone said to spin it then wash it. Now it's just lumped in a bag so what's next I think it might be the softest thing I have even touched!!

Knit One,
diana

Valk_scot
Permanent Resident

United Kingdom
1281 Posts

Posted - 10/06/2006 :  07:15:47 AM  Show Profile Send Valk_scot a Private Message  Reply with Quote
No, don`t wash it before you spin it. It`s much easier to handle raw, and most rabbits are pretty clean anyway.

I prefer to blend angora with some good merino, usually about 50:50, using fine handcarders. It makes it much easier to spin when blended and using carded rolags means you get a nice lofty woollen yarn. Spinning from rolags helps control the slippy angora as well.

Val.


http://spinningfishwife.blogspot.com/
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knitegrity
Chatty Knitter

255 Posts

Posted - 10/07/2006 :  06:07:48 AM  Show Profile Send knitegrity a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Thank you!! I am new to spinning so this is just playtime for me. I do have some Leichester (I think) roving. Will that work for now to practice? I need to buy carders so I am checking eBay for those.

Knit One,
diana
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Fivefibers
Permanent Resident

USA
1131 Posts

Posted - 10/07/2006 :  12:03:05 PM  Show Profile Send Fivefibers a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I have had angora bunnies for about 12 years now. Lovely little critters with a 'please touch' personality. I have never carded their fiber. All you need to do is use light tension (just enough to draw it on the bobbin) and a LOT of twist.

Many times, I ply one strand of angora with a strand of wool. I also spin it 2-ply, extremely fine. Just finished a pair of angora socks for myself. (Yeah, yeah, I know..... my feet are going to sweat right off my legs!) The 'bloom' of the fiber occurs with the friction of the knitting needle.

Fivefibers
2sheep; 3goats; 5bunnies
(so far)
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knitegrity
Chatty Knitter

255 Posts

Posted - 10/10/2006 :  05:30:44 AM  Show Profile Send knitegrity a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Thank you!! I am getting close to ordering a Majacraft Rose! I'll give some other roving a try first since the angora is slippery and I am sure I will be all thumbs anyway!

Knit One,
diana
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sharianna
Chatty Knitter

USA
107 Posts

Posted - 11/01/2006 :  07:06:46 AM  Show Profile Send sharianna a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Thanks ladies for the angora tips. I carded some Rambouillet and angora about 50/50 on my cotton handcarders and spun some last night. What a joy that was. I have been buying angora and getting ready to use it. Received my new anniversary Lendrum last week and am spinning up a storm.
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knottyknitter
Permanent Resident

USA
3702 Posts

Posted - 11/01/2006 :  07:43:12 AM  Show Profile Send knottyknitter a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Be very careful of buying used carders sight unseen. I've heard some horror stories about ones that may have appeared to be OK in the pictures on eBay but when received were almost unusable due to their condition. It's hard to tell without inspecting them in person.

My blog at KristiKnits.com
[img]http://www.kristiknits.com/images/KristiKnits_Logo_Green.gif[/img]
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ONAFIXEDINCOME
New Pal

USA
4 Posts

Posted - 11/01/2006 :  11:49:53 PM  Show Profile Send ONAFIXEDINCOME a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Angora's not as bad as many folks think. It's not merino, but it's not terrible, so don't let it scare you.

Dye after spinning! It felts beautifully when wet.

Lots of twist, very little pull from the bobbin, and spin fine if you can. If you can't spin fine, don't fret. Just remember to use BIG BIG needles to knit it and the bloom will fill it right in.

Relax and enjoy the stuff. Longer staple the better, of course, but shorter is still workable.

Whatever you have left, or can't spin, felt it! You can actually felt this stuff on one side of sturdier knitting as a lining, I hear.

Have fun!

PA
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ONAFIXEDINCOME
New Pal

USA
4 Posts

Posted - 11/01/2006 :  11:51:45 PM  Show Profile Send ONAFIXEDINCOME a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Angora's not as bad as many folks think. It's not merino, but it's not terrible, so don't let it scare you.

Dye after spinning! It felts beautifully when wet.

Lots of twist, very little pull from the bobbin, and spin fine if you can. If you can't spin fine, don't fret. Just remember to use BIG BIG needles to knit it and the bloom will fill it right in.

Relax and enjoy the stuff. Longer staple the better, of course, but shorter is still workable.

Whatever you have left, or can't spin, felt it! You can actually felt this stuff on one side of sturdier knitting as a lining, I hear.

Have fun!

PA
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hotzcatz
New Pal

22 Posts

Posted - 03/23/2012 :  11:09:27 PM  Show Profile  Visit hotzcatz's Homepage Send hotzcatz a Private Message  Reply with Quote
You can spin it bulky, too, if you like. Bulky angora has a lovely hand to it, knitted up it makes a very luxurious item. The added heft adds to the feel of it. Knits up fast, too. Sometimes I'll spin it thin, but it seems warmer and nicer spun thick. Just IHMO, tho.
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Kade1301
Permanent Resident

France
1438 Posts

Posted - 03/24/2012 :  06:19:06 AM  Show Profile  Visit Kade1301's Homepage Send Kade1301 a Private Message  Reply with Quote
How long's your staple? And how do you get the fibres to stay in when spun bulky and soft? Btw., what's your rabbit breed, anyway?

Happy spinning, Klara

http://www.lahottee.info
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hotzcatz
New Pal

22 Posts

Posted - 04/07/2012 :  01:47:58 AM  Show Profile  Visit hotzcatz's Homepage Send hotzcatz a Private Message  Reply with Quote
The bunbuns here are 100% English angora and their fiber length is probably an average of 3". I pluck or shear them about three times a year so they don't have huge coats on them. Show bunnies can get wool block when they keep a huge coat and most of these buns here are fiber bunnies. A few of them will go to the show in July and then come home to get a haircut. Which they seem to enjoy, they get particularly bouncy after a good haircut.

When I spin it bulky it is spun about the same as thin except it has a lot more fiber in it. Not sure how to exactly explain it. It's not tightly spun, but it's not the loose lofty yarn which can be spun from an open sheep's fleece. It's a fairly short draw, usually about two inches or so. The tension is drawing in the fiber but not pulling real hard. The angora fiber is lightly carded first with a pair of cotton hand cards although I used a pair of dog slicker brushes before there were the cotton cards to use. The prime fiber can go to a fairly long (for angora) draw of maybe four or five inches. Usually the draw is shorter than that. I'll put in enough twist that the ply will twist up on itself when the tension is taken off of it, but not twist up on itself real tightly. The yarn is always at least a two ply. I may make some three ply for a smoother bulky yarn. I think I need more rabbits! I can run out of angora fiber pretty quickly. I only spin the angora bulky because there are the fuzzy bunbuns here. If I had to buy the fiber, I'd be spinning it thin, no doubt!

The bulky angora gets some incredible bloom on it once it's knitted up and petted for awhile. When it is spun bulky and knitted up, the items sell at the first farmer's market they go to. Doesn't seem to matter the price is sky high, the insane bloom on the knitted up items pretty much reaches out and grabs folks and demands that they take it home with them.
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