Thursday, December 10, 2009

Swinging beaters, words of praise and birds that sing!

Now that I am back in the studio, I can really make up for lost time! I found an image of the completed piece I posted yesterday. In this image the piece is being sewn to the backing and then it will be installed in a custom frame. You can see that the finished piece has the logo (inside the house) of the non-profit foundation that commissioned this artwork for their retiring executive director. The singing bird is a symbolic way of honoring this woman's work for the organization, a work of joy!

I had a call from a weaver who is refinishing a used loom. Her questions concerned the mounting of the beater, which by the way is a very SWEET feature of the Macomber Loom. The beater upright sits on a bolt which is screwed into a small cast iron piece. The small cast iron piece is screw mounted to the base of the loom.

You can adjust the height of the beater by selecting which slot to rest upon the bolt. The other adjustment is that you can swing this small cast iron part forward and backward (might need to loosen the bolt attachment).

When you swing this small cast iron part, it will adjust how close the beater sits against the castle. Often if the floor is not level, this will affect the way the beater rest against the castle upright, causing one side of the beater to hit and another to be a slight distant away. By fine tuning the beater with this small cast part, you can accommodate for any imbalance.

Your warp should rest comfortably on the beater race (the straight horizontal bar). By raising or lowering the height of the beater and fine tuning the left/right position, you can get it perfect!

And finally words from a weaver who has a Macomber Air Dobby System
"I continue to marvel that the system works so well.  My back pain is a memory.  I timed a chenille scarf last week and could weave 90" scarf in exactly one hour.  I think that is probably substantially faster than foot treadling a scarf of the same size.  Yea."

Happy weaving! Sarah


  1. Thanks Sarah...I have had an imbalance problem with my beater and tried some things but did not know about the little cast thing as being adjustable, so again, thank you. I will work on that today.

  2. Thank Sarah, I did not know that. I have another question for you. I have a used Macomber that I bought. While weaving it will drop a shaft or not pick it up. I am doing some towels and have several mistakes for this reason. It is very upsetting. What is the cause of this? I stopped weaving for about 6 months because of it and I just started back up and it is doing it again. Also when I advance the warp to get it tight, press the pedal and kaboom. The brake springs loose or the handle on the beam bar pops loose, warp fall in my lap. It doesn't happen till I tighten the warp and press the pedal to start weaving. Maybe if you had a picture of the brake and advancing ratchet on the front beam, I could see if I did something wrong putting it back together. What do you think? Help.

  3. Bonnie:

    What size loom is it??? The brake system is different on the CP vs the B looms. There are images of the CP front cloth brake on the blog. Go back and you will find it. Otherwise...tell me what kind of loom you have so I can help problem solve. Sarah

  4. Sarah,
    I believe it is type B? Designer's Delight. Model # DD5 or DDS. 16 harness. The computer works fine. The programmable keys still work too. One day I would like to get to hooking it up to a computer with programs with the patterns.
    Hope this will help.

  5. Bonnie:

    It might be easiest to chat. let's make a date to talk on the phone and I can help trouble shoot your problems. Let me know dates, times and time zone, as well as phone #


  6. Bonnie:

    You can email me privately if you want to make a phone date. My email address is sarah at sarahhaskell dot com

    I have some ideas and questions for you!