a tiny wheel
I’ve mentioned on a couple of the recent vlogs that I am now a SpinOlution dealer, which has been really exciting. The main reason I thought SpinOlution might be a good company to align myself with is because I have two tiny people who are incredibly interested in the spinning that I do on a regular (obsessive) basis! This afternoon when the FedEx truck pulled up, Norah ran away from the big scary man but as soon as he’d pulled away, she came running for the box, knowing exactly what was inside. It took less than 10 minutes for me to assemble to little wheel and immediately, she started treadling away, sitting on my lap out on the grass. Soon, my legs fell asleep and I asked if we could move to the steps leading up to our front patio. After some “whys” and “what fors” that ultimately lead to me moving the wheel anyway, she followed me and plunked herself down to continue treadling away.
With the Pollywog, I bought the accelerator since I am hoping to spin on this wheel myself, and the accelerator offers more ratios than just the standard wheel (which features 10, 4.5 and 2.5:1). With the accelerator (that piece sticking out to the side that looks like a whole bunch of extra pulleys), the ratios include 22, 17,15, 13,11, 10, 8, 7, 6 and 5:1. That is a lot of extra room to grow and develop as a spinner! And 2.5:1 on the standard wheel without the accelerator will be great for spinning low-twist singles. Another neat aspect of this wheel is that Norah can actually carry it around herself when the accelerator is off – it’s only 8.5lbs.
I’m really interested to see what I think of the on-board Lazy Kate. I think it’s a great feature for storing bobbins but I’m not sure what plying from it will be like – I will report back after I’ve played with it. I hooked up some commercial yarn for James to play with and he had it feeding on immediately. He actually was treadling too fast, if that’s possible, and I had to get him to slow down to get everything working smoothly. The enthusiasm of a toddler is unparalleled!
If you are interested, here are some initial videos of the kids inspecting the wheel and playing with it. My kids are rough on things and I’ll be watching for wear and tear on this little wheel. Will it withstand their abuse? I certainly hope so! I think what is most interesting about these wheels is the number of adults who seem to love them – there are a few spinners on Instagram who swear by them (here and here, just to name a couple) and have other wheels that they love equally. That seems to be one of the lovely things about spinning and tools available on the market these days. One doesn’t have to choose one wheel or spindle. There are any number of tools to add twist to fibre and one can have many wheels that one loves.
A ‘forever’ wheel might be an antique that is irreplaceable, a modern and fast castle wheel or a little tiny transportable wheel that fits in a small travel trailer. But in a fleet of wheels and spindles, it may be just one beloved tool that you know you will never sell but will use and love forever. I have drastically changed how I look at these tools that enter my home and have seen a few come and go already but know there are a couple of wheels that will never go. This one will be well-loved by myself and the kids. It’ll be a great learning and travel wheel. And that’s awesome!
Also, I love treadling on it – it is so super stinkin’ cool! James informed me that when the treadles are lifted off to the sides, that it’s “turned off” as opposed to ‘’turned on” when they are engaged and ready to spin. Good to know!