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Author Topic: sending fleece for carding  (Read 10635 times)

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • Wester Gladstone Hebridean Sheep
sending fleece for carding
« on: February 01, 2015, 09:03:55 pm »
It's a number of years since I had any sheep fleece carded or spun at a commercial mill.  When ever people ask me to recommend somewhere I usually say the Natural Fibre Co or Halifax Mill.  I need to get a load carded, but was wondering if anyone could recommend any other mills, or has any comments about the two I've mentioned. (pm if you don't want to speak in public)
www.scothebs.co.uk

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Anke

  • Joined Dec 2009
  • St Boswells, Scottish Borders
Re: sending fleece for carding
« Reply #1 on: February 02, 2015, 08:59:51 am »
Have you spoken to the Border Mill over in Duns? You may even  be able to drive over there... they set up originally for Alpacas, but I know they do wool nowadays too, as well as Angoras.

I was going to try them, but not quite enough fleece/funds to justify. Will have some more coloured this year, so may reconsider.

Bionic

  • Joined Dec 2010
  • Talley, Carmarthenshire
Re: sending fleece for carding
« Reply #2 on: February 02, 2015, 09:08:22 am »
Oh, it would be lovely to have someone else do the carding for me. I don't have enough fleece to justify it though. Still, it will be interesting to know how you get on fleecewife.
Life is like a bowl of cherries, mostly yummy but some dodgy bits

Buttermilk

  • Joined Jul 2014
Re: sending fleece for carding
« Reply #3 on: February 02, 2015, 09:24:56 am »
I cannot recommend anywhere else as I use Halifax Mill.

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • Wester Gladstone Hebridean Sheep
Re: sending fleece for carding
« Reply #4 on: February 02, 2015, 11:36:07 am »
Have you spoken to the Border Mill over in Duns? You may even  be able to drive over there... they set up originally for Alpacas, but I know they do wool nowadays too, as well as Angoras.

I was going to try them, but not quite enough fleece/funds to justify. Will have some more coloured this year, so may reconsider.

Hi Anke.  I hadn't tried the Border Mill as I thought it was just alpaca.  Trying to find costs on their website seemed to send me round in circles, but I did eventually find a general guide, although not for just carding.  My main concern would be that equipment intended for use with alpaca fibre probably wouldn't do a good job with Hebridean fleece, which is what one batch will be. I've been stung that way before. I do though have some alpaca fleeces which I'm never going to get around to spinning (all that fluff goes straight up my nose and I start wheezing), so I might get them spun up with Shetland, for my own knitting, not for sale.
Thanks for the suggestion.

www.scothebs.co.uk

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

   Five Freedoms
   # Freedom from Hunger and Thirst.
   # Freedom from Discomfort.
   # Freedom from Pain, Injury or Disease.
   # Freedom to Express Normal Behavior.
   # Freedom from Fear and Distress

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • Wester Gladstone Hebridean Sheep
Re: sending fleece for carding
« Reply #5 on: February 02, 2015, 11:58:39 am »
Oh, it would be lovely to have someone else do the carding for me. I don't have enough fleece to justify it though. Still, it will be interesting to know how you get on fleecewife.

There are lots of mini mills Sally which will card or spin as little as one fleece, or 1.5kgs.  The min at the NFCo for just carding is 10kgs, and I can certainly send that much for each of two breeds.  The cost there for carding on its own is £14-17/kg, which is pretty much exactly what it cost to have the yarn spun last time I had some done there.  The spinning cost is now £35-45/kg ish - beyond what I want to spend, and anyway I still have a fair number of balls of yarn I still need to sell.


Buttermilk - I had a couple of large batches of Heb blended with alpaca spun up at Halifax.  I was virtually passing their door (well not quite but close enough) so I dropped off the sacks of raw fleece there in person.  The guys were so kind and friendly, gave me a tour and a cup of tea.  I really enjoyed the visit.  I may well get these fleeces carded there, depending on their backlog, although I won't be passing the door again so postage costs come into it too.

I'm just wondering what alternatives there are. There are several mini mills, and alpaca only mills, but I need somewhere a bit bigger.
I live just a few miles from New Lanark, but the last I heard was that you have to scour your own fleece first, as they have no licence to do that there. Otherwise New Lanark would be my first choice.

I had a bad experience with carding only a few years ago, (not from any company mentioned here), which was an expensive mistake and wasted 5 beautiful Shetland fleeces.  I fancy a change from doing all that carding at home before I can sit down to spin.  I'll still comb special fleeces, but for a while I will be able to do some production spinning.

I'll try to remember to report back  :spin:
www.scothebs.co.uk

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

   Five Freedoms
   # Freedom from Hunger and Thirst.
   # Freedom from Discomfort.
   # Freedom from Pain, Injury or Disease.
   # Freedom to Express Normal Behavior.
   # Freedom from Fear and Distress

Mad Goatwoman of Madeley

  • Joined Sep 2011
  • Telford
Re: sending fleece for carding
« Reply #6 on: February 02, 2015, 09:35:10 pm »
I'd love to have some fleeces carded so I just have to spin them but I just can't afford it. Next time our younger daughter comes to stay, I shall try to persuade her son to card some. He did a great job last year. I wonder what sort of financial incentive would be needed.

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • Wester Gladstone Hebridean Sheep
Re: sending fleece for carding
« Reply #7 on: February 03, 2015, 12:43:01 am »
Knit him a hat?  Teach him how to spin so he can make his own hat?  What age is he?  My grandchildren, most of them anyway, are keen to learn to spin, but they seem to be a bit young still.  I'd like to try this summer though.
www.scothebs.co.uk

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

   Five Freedoms
   # Freedom from Hunger and Thirst.
   # Freedom from Discomfort.
   # Freedom from Pain, Injury or Disease.
   # Freedom to Express Normal Behavior.
   # Freedom from Fear and Distress

Bionic

  • Joined Dec 2010
  • Talley, Carmarthenshire
Re: sending fleece for carding
« Reply #8 on: February 03, 2015, 07:55:18 am »
From what I have seen at the various shows we do in the summer the boys seem to pick up spinning better than the girls.
Life is like a bowl of cherries, mostly yummy but some dodgy bits

Dogwalker

  • Joined Nov 2011
Re: sending fleece for carding
« Reply #9 on: February 03, 2015, 10:43:28 am »
I did a session at the local church children's activity day and the boys were as good if not better than the girls.  And having something that involved mechanical gadgets keeps them interested longer than the usual colouring/ craft activities.

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • Wester Gladstone Hebridean Sheep
Re: sending fleece for carding
« Reply #10 on: February 03, 2015, 11:19:50 am »
Yes, boys, and their Dads, are attracted by how a wheel works and seem far more ready to have a go than many girls. I used to sit and spin next to our sheep pens at the Royal Highland Show, and always had quite a crowd watching, but it was mostly the children who wanted to have a go - well, the Dads wanted to but always hung back.  There was the occasional woman who would have a go, but they were usually people who had always wanted to spin.

 I'm struck though with how quickly all children tend to pick up spinning, and spinning quite well too.  Maybe I should just try the grandkids and see if they surprise me.  Maybe their attention spans aren't as short as I fear  :spin:
www.scothebs.co.uk

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

   Five Freedoms
   # Freedom from Hunger and Thirst.
   # Freedom from Discomfort.
   # Freedom from Pain, Injury or Disease.
   # Freedom to Express Normal Behavior.
   # Freedom from Fear and Distress

Dogwalker

  • Joined Nov 2011
Re: sending fleece for carding
« Reply #11 on: February 03, 2015, 03:58:38 pm »
How old are they?

I took my daughter to a spinning day when she was about 7 or 8 and she loved it and did very well.
It was a holiday treat for me while my parents kept the two boys out of mischief for the day.

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • Wester Gladstone Hebridean Sheep
Re: sending fleece for carding
« Reply #12 on: February 03, 2015, 04:51:39 pm »
Nine, eight, six and six.  One of the sixes is the only girl, and she is desperate to try.  The two older boys are slightly keen to, for as long as the thought stays in their heads, but the youngest six is heavily into fishing, fly tying and so on so I don't think he could keep his mind on Granny's spinning.   
I have an older grandson too, who's into his twenties, but he's so concerned about what's cool that he won't try.  He won't even ride a horse because it's 'girlie'  ???
www.scothebs.co.uk

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

   Five Freedoms
   # Freedom from Hunger and Thirst.
   # Freedom from Discomfort.
   # Freedom from Pain, Injury or Disease.
   # Freedom to Express Normal Behavior.
   # Freedom from Fear and Distress

Mad Goatwoman of Madeley

  • Joined Sep 2011
  • Telford
Re: sending fleece for carding
« Reply #13 on: February 04, 2015, 12:52:11 am »
He is 12. I taught him to knit and he did a bit but then lost interest. His dad says he's not to do it because it's for girls but his mum (our daughter) lets him. Last year I taught him to spin but most ot the time the tuition went "Tanaka, slow down. It's not a race. Let's count with you again. One, two, one, two." Repeated every two minutes. He did end up with some dreadlocks which he proudly took home. The fleece he carded for me, I spun up and made him a hat with it. His mum hasn't seen him wear it but he does take it out and hold it sometimes. He tends to prefer to have his hood up rather than wear a hat.

FiB

  • Joined Sep 2011
  • Bala, North Wales
    • Facebook
Re: sending fleece for carding
« Reply #14 on: February 04, 2015, 09:22:33 pm »
I have my own mini mill :-).  I can hire him out (although strictly speaking that would be child labour ;-) ).  We are both mildly addicted!  It was my first desire on getting sheep... To start a mini mill, but talking seriously to some people about it, I realised I just couldn't make a business case for the capital (£50k ish ). But I'd still love to do it. I love making rovings.....

 

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