How do you wind on a Turkish Spindle?

Traveller in Tote You can wind onto a Turkish spindle however you like! But if you want advice, or need a pointer, then read on.

The goal is to make a tidy ball of yarn that keeps the spindle balanced and is ready for plying, storage, or skeining, as appropriate.

The really simple mantra I didn't learn for Turkish wind-on is: over 2, under 1. This isn't, topologically, speaking, a ball -- it's a ring. But, Wool Being Wool, it works -- the wool hangs onto strands below, and it all hangs together. It also has the nice feature of having a flat bottom, so it sits nicely and behaves while you're pulling the center out for 2-plying a center-pull ball.

Okay, but I didn't learn that. Instead, I used my childhood ball-winding skills. My mother still winds all her balls by hand, has never had a ball-winder or nostepinne and wouldn't use one if I gave it to her! She enjoys the rhythm of hand-winding a ball. Her balls are perfect, round orbs, not too tight and not too loose. It took me 40 years to make pastry anywhere close to flakey like hers. When I'm not spinning balls on my Turkish spindle, I use my ball winder!

Pictures being more concise, this is what I do:

Turkish Spindle wind-on, top viewTurkish Spindle wind-on, bottom-view

I like this wind-on: left and right of the center pole, around and around, then change direction 90-degrees and go around and around that way for a while.

The bottom view (as you can see) looks the same as the top view.

And, I barber-pole my yarn up the shaft so I can thigh-roll my Turkish spindle if I want to, too ;-)

The completed yarn cake? Here you go:

Traveller Turkish Spindle and its Yarn CakeAhhh -- a full spindle -- oops, time to ply ;-)

My Turkish (a Spin-Dizzy Traveller), just emptied of its ball of yarn. I'd "just" ply this right back on but decided to spin another ball full and ply the two together, for a change.

By some odd quirk of fate, spindle and yarn-cake weigh in the same: both are 0.9 ounces.

Now, if someone can point me to an on-line survey tool, I'll fire up a survey -- until then, put your answer in a comment here or email me -- how do you wind onto your Turkish spindle? the ball shown here, the over-2/under-1, or some other way? Thanks for sharing!


Amelia of Ask The Bellwether said...

An emailer asked, how to you use a spindle without a hook such as a Turkish spindle?

With a Turkish spindle or other hookless spindle, I use a half-hitch near the top of the shaft. Usually, as with the Spin-Dizzy Traveller, there's an indentation or even a notch near the top, which will hold the half-hitch in place.

Half-hitches are pretty easy to make. You basically make a loop, catching the upward strand under the downward strand so it stays in place. There's a video of this here:
though in this video the spindler doesn't barberpole the yarn up -- it's personal preference, to barberpole the yarn like I do in my photo, or to leave it making a triangle-edge as shown in this video; I barberpole it so I can thigh-roll my bottom whorl spindles just as I do my top-whorl spindles.

Thanks for asking!

Joanna said...

I'm an over 2 under 1 Turish spindler, Amelia!

Anonymous said...

There are a couple of videos on you tube showing how to wind (over 2, under 1) to create a god's eye type design asyou wrap...laying each wrap next to the one before and building out, then starting again near the center. A picture is worth a thousand words, a video is worth a milllion! Laurel (i am not sure if i can post URL links, so google it your tube turkish spindle winding...)

Vicky said...

Sorry this is so SO long after your original post, but I recently learned about the basketweave wind-on. You start with over 2, under 1 for the first little bit, then continuously wrap over 2 and under (the same) 2 several times. There's a video from Jankins Woodworking here on YouTube, or search for "Aegean Spindle Wind-on".