Spinninglizzy's Weblog

Falling down the slippery fibre slope

Off To The Races!

The Leclerc Dorothy loom taught me how wonderful it is to have a shuttle race.  The other looms I have worked with do not have one.  A shuttle race really helps weaving get up to speed, by creating a path and support for the shuttle to fly through.  The support is necessary if your shuttle would otherwise fall through the threads, if threads are sett too far apart, if the threads are too fine to support your shuttle, or if your shuttle is too heavy.  If you’re only passing a shuttle (or a stick shuttle) from one side of the shed to the other, you don’t need a shuttle race.  But, if you want to throw or shoot the shuttle through the sheds, a race is essential to help the shuttle pass through consistently.

The lack of a shuttle race on my Bergman loom was bothersome.  I kept playing mind games with my shuttles, thinking “If I throw it just so, with my wrist thus, the shuttle will clear the shed…”; but I kept picking up or dropping extra threads from my shed, evidenced as warp floats:


Half an hour later, enough was enough.  A race was needed.  No problem; it’s easy to put one on.

It was late at night (stores were closed) when I decided to attach a shuttle race, so I put together a temporary one using a padded lease stick and two spring clamps.



Your warp threads should just skim the top of the race:


For a permanent race, I found some curved moulding from the hardware store.  I found it next to the flat screen moulding that I cut into sticks for packing the warp beam.  It’s not easy to see from my picture, but the cross section is a quarter oval, not a quarter circle.  Amazingly, it was cheaper than the plain flat moulding!


I added some self-stick felt bumpers to bottom of the curve.


It fits into the curve of my beater better than the flat lease stick did.


This moulding is very lightweight, and is slightly flexible, but it’s enough to support a shuttle.  The moulding and two small clamps did not change the weight or feel of the beater assembly appreciably. 


Don’t weave home without it!  🙂



4 March 2009 Posted by | Weaving | , , , , | 7 Comments