Meet my fiber tools!
Part 1: Spinning wheel “Ulla”
Ulla is my Norwegian-style spinning wheel. She was made in the early 1980s by a Scottish company called Haldane. This model is known as the ‘Harris’. The Harris is a rare find, since it was a prototype for what later became the Kromski Polonaise. Ulla is an early version, as seen by her in-line flyer (located directly between the maidens). Later versions featured an offset flyer that make changing bobbins much easier. Since it’s such a production to change the bobbin, I just wind the yarn off instead.
I acquired her in October 2009 and while she’s not my primary wheel, I find immense joy in spinning on her. The huge drive wheel allows me to get some serious weaving and sock yarn out of her. She is really not portable (her drive wheel does not come off, sadly) so she lives in my living room. I spin on her when I want to chat or just relax and I’m doing nothing on the computer. She really is a joy to use.
Technical stuff for spinners: Ulla is a single-treadle, double-drive Saxony wheel. The flyer is located on the left. Everything is adjustable, from the angle of the drive wheel to the distance between the mother-of-all and the drive wheel. She has a string footman that feeds through a hole in the table—very ingenious! The drive wheel is 24” in diameter. Bobbins hold about 4oz of fine yarn. I would not recommend her for a beginning spinner, as she is VERY finicky, but for a weaver or sock knitter she is amazing, delivering tightly-spun yarns that hold up to abrasion well.