Weaving Sticks

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Hi Madelyn!


In a previous post, you mentioned "weaving sticks" used to wind the warp on the back beam. I would like to get these for winding a linen warp on the back beam of my Harrisville Rug Loom. I currently use rolls of paper and would like a better solution. Can you tell me specifically what you use and where you get them? My warps are about 39" at the reed and so the sticks will need to be at least 40". My warps are usually about 20 yards long, how many sticks do you think I will need?





Hi Carol!


I use warping sticks that come from Glimakra USA and are carried by many weaving retailers. They have a smooth finish, and you can order them cut to the length you need. It's best if the sticks are at least two inches longer than the width of the warp you are using them with.


How many sticks you need depends on how many you put in per turn of the warp beam. I usually put in two per turn. But I am very firm about winding so that warp tension is very, very tight and the diameter of the warp on the beam is absolutely consistent (you can see how to make sure this happens in Warping Your Loom). If the tension is not firm, the sticks will press on the warp layer under them and drag that warp layer against the next, and you'll see funny loops in the threads on the beam. Especially with linen, all of the warp layers need to be smooth and tight. 


The sticks come in bundles of 24. I think I'd get three bundles for the project you describe. If your loom's weaving width is 48 inches wide, you can have them cut that wide. I usually don't like the sticks to be toooo much longer than the warp is wide because they tend to bend inward (toward the beam) beyond the warp's edges, changing the circumference of the warp on the beam so that it is not perfectly consistent (making it smaller on each side). If you think you'll use the sticks for a warp width of about 39" most of the time and your loom is 60 inches wide, I'd still recommend 48" as about the maximum length I'd want to use with the project. (Another option is to wind on some dummy cords at each edge of the beam to keep the warping sticks straight if you use longer sticks with a narrower warp.)



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