Saturday, July 25, 2009

Tying On - Efficient or Not?

I've always kind of wondered whether tying on a new warp onto an old warp is actually a time-saver or not... I don't often repeat weave structures from project to project (short attention span), but I'm in the midst of doing just that:

I finished up one set of turned Ms and Os scarves (neutrals) and decided to do another set (in greens/browns), so, there it is - tied onto the previous warp. I just hold the yarns together so the ends line up and tie an overhand knot with both threads acting as one, if that makes sense. The knots didn't slip at all.

A slight hitch in the process - my first warp didn't have a whole heck of a lot left over, so I tied my warp bar (temporarily, lol) to the fourth shaft on my little Harrisville loom, just to take the tension off the yarn and hold it in place while I tied on in front of the reed.

I timed the whole warping process for both sets - and, surprise, surprise, it actually took about 15 minutes *longer* to tie on than to just start over entirely! Interesting.

A couple caveats - I can do this threading more or less in my sleep. I'm also a relatively quick threader, from what I've seen (hard to tell, of course). But, I did come to the conclusion that for smaller projects and projects that I can whiz through the threading, tying on doesn't make sense for me.

For larger projects with more complex threading (like the 16s advancing twill on my Weavebird), I would probably tie on if I were repeating a design, even if it takes a long time, just because it eliminates all possibility of threading errors.

Anybody else try this little experiment? I'd love to hear if it's faster for you. Maybe I'm just incredibly slow at tying all those knots!


ECS said...

I've done tying on sometimes as a way to have less loom waste on a warp where I don't have a lot to spare.

I'm not working with such fine material as you are generally though, so maybe it's easier to tie the knots, and they probably go through the reed better too. I usually work the knots through the reed and then the harnesses about an inch at a time rather than trying to wind them through directly.

skiingweaver said...

Ah! Yes! Absolutely, I had forgotten about that - definitely a good idea when you're trying to make a warp go as far as you can. :)

Happily, they went through the reed without any trouble - this yarn was sett at 16 epi in an 8-dent reed.

maureen said...

I have just finished reeding and threading 8 harnesses with 628 ends for a turned M&O dishtowel at 24 epi, and it took me 6 hours. It has a decorative thread at the first and last thread of each of the 44 blocks. It will yeild 9 towels and then I will TIE ON the next 10 yard warp that will take me less that three hours, there will be no mistakes and the deco threads will be in the right place without even having to think about it.

I do a lot of fancy twills and have tied on as many as 10 different warps on the same threading- so as a limited production weaver I save a lot of time when tying on and save a lot of frustration knowing there are no threading errors to deal with, and those inevitable film cans hanging over the back of the loom.

If I am threading a straight twill I never tie on as it is quicker to thread directly, but for complicated weave and color plans tying on is the only way to go as far as I am concerned.

skiingweaver said...

Phew, Maureen, that's a lot of work! (Funnily enough, the warp that I was tying on here was also a turned Ms&Os! Also with an accent color for the first and last two threads of each repeat! Great minds and all...) That is really good to know, thanks!