Monday, August 03, 2015

Cricket Rigid Heddle Loom for Card & Tablet Weaving

Cricket Loom and Stand for Card  Tablet Weaving
I hacked up my Cricket rigid heddle loom and its stand to create a continuous, advancing, circular warp. The warp is wrapped around the entire loom and the bottom bar of the stand to make approximately a 2 meter warp. The actual length depends on the angle of the loom in the stand.
Because the bottom bar of the stand is curved, the width of the warp is limited to the width of the concave, but with a 15” Cricket there’s more than enough room for a 4” wide warp. It may not be the perfect way to create a warp for tablet weaving, but it does work!
I’m not going into detail about threading the cards and the patterns, as there’s already lots of information available. Here I simply show an alternative way to warp.
(1)
Cricket Loom and Stand as a Continuous Advancing Warp Loom
(1) Position the loom at the desired angle, and then raise the front a couple inches higher (it’ll be lowered again after warping). Tighten the knobs securely, tighter than for RH weaving, because tension pulls down on the front of the loom. Remove both apron bars but leave the cords and its loops. Turn the back beam slightly to where the cords attached to the beam is facing front, to create a smooth beam in the back. The cords get in the way of warping, so tape or tie the cords to the center bar of the loom.
(2)
Cricket Loom and Stand as a Continuous Advancing Warp Loom
(2) It’s easiest to warp the loom with the entire unit laid on its side (not shown) and place soft objects at each corner to prevent wobbling. Warp the loom with some tension. Thread the card and attach the yarn to the front beam. Drop the card before taking the warp around the back beams, under the stand’s middle bar, and back up to the front beam, and tie the warp ends together.
(3)
Cricket Loom and Stand as a Continuous Advancing Warp Loom
(3) Set the loom upright and make a tensioning device: Free the left & right front apron cords, hold both apron bars together in back of the loom, behind and perpendicular to the warp, and then attach the left and right apron cords around both apron bars together. Now lower the front of the loom back to the desired angle, which loosens the warp, and tighten the stand knobs securely. To increase or loosen tension simply use the cloth beam gear locks as for rigid heddle weaving, pulling in the apron bar to tension the warp.
(4)
Cricket Loom and Stand for Card  Tablet Weaving
(4) Use the normal weaving area, with cards instead of a heddle. Advance the warp by first loosening the tension then tightening it for weaving. Take care if using hard spacers that may scratch the beams.
(5)
Cricket Loom and Stand for Card  Tablet Weaving
(5) Excessive twist can be pushed past the back beams. If those ends aren’t untwisted in the weaving pattern, untie those card ends, unwind, and retie.
(6)
Cricket Loom and Stand for Card  Tablet Weaving
(6) Alternatively, tie the ends of each twisting card to a swivel hook clip. Use caution when advancing the warp. Cut toilet or paper towel rolls lengthwise and wrap around the beams to prevent scratches.
As of this latest edit, I’m not finished with the pictured band yet, but at about halfway woven it’s working fine.
I’m curious if this card weaving technique will work on other rigid heddle looms? I’m also cross-posting this toTablet Weaving to see what they think.

I’m curious if this will work on other rigid heddle looms? I’m also cross-posting this to the Tablet Weaving and The Cricket Club groups on Ravelry to see what others think and hopefully encourage more people to try tablet weaving - it’s fun!

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