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Author Topic: Too fine a fleece for my drum carder?  (Read 727 times)

Polyanya

  • Joined Mar 2015
  • Shetland
    • The Creative Croft
    • Facebook
Re: Too fine a fleece for my drum carder?
« Reply #15 on: January 28, 2020, 10:39:24 am »
Sorry to hear about your hip Anke, hope all goes well. Now I've never tried Gotland fleece before does it have a good crimp? I don't keep many sheep and am astonished in how variable the fleece is from each animal even though they are as near to the primitives as possible.

Thanks for the tip Sally, think if I removed all the second cuts before rolling and washing there'd be nothing left  :roflanim: Seriously I could learn to shear myself I know but I might make a worse job than hubby, he uses hand shears. Some sheep are very wriggly and I don't think I could hold them.  There are shearers who come to the island and like you say charge about £1 per fleece (I think) but he enjoys doing it, so..........
In the depths of winter, I found there was in me an invincible summer - Camus

www.thecreativecroft.co.uk
Voss Electric Fence

SallyintNorth

  • Joined Feb 2011
  • Cornwall
  • Rarely short of an opinion but I mean well
Re: Too fine a fleece for my drum carder?
« Reply #16 on: January 28, 2020, 01:28:40 pm »
I sheared all my own sheep apart from some of the lambed ewes in 2018.  (Several wethers and other fleece sheep, and about 12 hoggs.)  I did them standing up (them and me), in a small pen, largely unrestrained.  I just had to pop them on their bums to do underneath, and some of them didn't like their legs being clipped standing free.  Hand shears, of course.  I took off chunks as I went, sorting into "spinnable" and "dirty/not nice", and white and colours as I went - which is fine for me to use but meant I didn't get whole fleeces to sell.

I did one to three a day over a period. 

I thoroughly enjoyed the time with the sheep, and the insights into them and their fleece that it gave me.  I will definitely be happy to do some of them again.  Didn't have the spare time last year, but should be able to do some this year.
Don't listen to the money men - they know the price of everything and the value of nothing

Live in a cohousing community with small farm for our own use.  Dairy cow, beef cattle, pigs, sheep for meat and fleece, ducks and hens for eggs, veg and fruit growing

Anke

  • Joined Dec 2009
  • St Boswells, Scottish Borders
Re: Too fine a fleece for my drum carder?
« Reply #17 on: January 28, 2020, 02:11:53 pm »
I quite often end up doing the odd ewe by hand after the shearer has done the main flock, as there is always one that decides she is not going into the pen.... and then also halter on and in a corner of two hurdles, so you can press them against the hurdle and change sides easily by swiveling the sheep round. Fortunately this last summer all got into the pen, as my hip would not have allowed me to do any shearing... but I am thinking of getting OH to build me a trimming stand (like the ones I see people using at Great Yorkshire Show, which even move the sheep up to a proper working height so you don't have to stoop so much), so I can do more at home... as shearer is near retirement.
RE Gotland wool - pure Gotland wool is quite difficult, as it tends to felt on the sheep unless you clip them twice per year, but the cross between Shetland and Gotland produces an excellent fleece and a bit more size to the offspring as well. But Gotland feet are terrible, so they do need some more looking after compared to Shetlands.

Polyanya

  • Joined Mar 2015
  • Shetland
    • The Creative Croft
    • Facebook
Re: Too fine a fleece for my drum carder?
« Reply #18 on: January 29, 2020, 08:09:03 pm »
I'm impressed ladies - don't think I have the stamina to be honest but I quite like the sound of your sheep stand Anke at working height no less, I could probably manage that - save all the backaches. Gotland fleece felting and here was me thinking my fleece felts when I even look at it! They must be similar breeds.
In the depths of winter, I found there was in me an invincible summer - Camus

www.thecreativecroft.co.uk

 

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