In March of this year I decided to buy a Tempo Treadle from Lofty Fiber to create error free weaving on my Baby Macomber loom. So what is Tempo Treadle ? It involves adding magnets to your treadles, (attached with velcro), that are detected during weaving by a sensor array strip placed below the treadles. The array strip is connected via a ribbon cable to a “System Unit” or small computer with display that sits on the castle.
So what does the System Unit do? WIF files containing the weaving design are uploaded to the system unit, which also contains the system software which is customized for your loom type and model. The unit can be used to track threading also showing warp thread colors and progress. If you stop before completing your progress your place will be saved. It will list harnesses that should be tied to treadles. Allowing double checking for tie-up errors. Tracking weaving and detecting errors is my motivator to purchase.
When I chose to weave more complicated weaving, often it resulted in undetected errors or ones that required a lot of unweaving. I was beginning to wonder if it was still rewarding to weave. The Tempo Treadle has brought joy back to my weaving. It beeps when the correct treadle has been depressed and released during weaving. A different sounding beep is heard when the wrong harness has been depressed and released. These sounds can be adjusted or turned off. It will save my position when stepping away or turning the unit off. It allows me to now weave a long complicated treadling. The above picture of a woven Bateman Blend fabric has a treadling repeat of 104, including the tabbies.
Currently it is not available for all types of looms. The sensor array is loom specific, but the System Unit which is purchased separately from the array can be used on any loom that has a Sensor Array on it.
When I started this journey with Dawne and Barry from Lofty Fiber a Sensor Array had not been designed specifically for the Baby Mac. They had me make many measurements to determine placement of the sensors and Sensor Array strip to customize for the Baby Mac. The loom needed to be placed on raised legs to create space for the array under the treadles? This is only done for some loom types. The array is bracketed to the side supports so it does move. The only draw back with this arrangement is that to move the loom requires removing the Sensor Array and brackets and legs. There are many additional features to the Tempo Treadle I have not discussed that ease the weaving process, click on TempoTreadle.com to learn more.
Now to get the other 4 harnesses that I have on order for my Spring loom, then a Sensor Array can be added to it for error free, stress free weaving too.
This sample of crimp weave was woven on warp left after weaving a scarf. It’s narrow since the original scarf was only 7 inches wide. The warp is a 10/2 Tencel and weft a polyester sewing thread. This gives a lovely hand. Note to self when setting up to weave future scarf warp width should be at least 15 inches in reed.
The towels which were on the loom are off and need to be hemmed. This was the warp I showed in a previous post “Spring Has Sprung“. I’ll post the variety of designs I wove when the handwork is finished. My time lately has been spent sewing handwoven fabric into a garment for the upcoming Contemporary Handweavers of Texas conference in June. With a sigh of relief it will go to the post office tomorrow. There will be pictures to share after the conference. So what to put on the loom next?
We had a little too much rain a week ago. The lake flooded in the park where I walk. Later that day the water had receded and the grounds cleaned up. Other areas near continue to have flooding a week later. More rain is in the forecast here. With any luck it will come in light sprinkles. Today was a beautiful sunny day, letting us relax with a swim in the pool.
In the last Post I promised you a picture of the front side of the scarf once it came off the loom. The scarf does not have a nice drape. It is heavy or stiff so it will most likely be cut up to create smaller objects. Oh why didn’t I sample? I’m using a 16/2 bamboo instead of the 10/2 bamboo used in the first piece for the next scarf. The fabric is now lighter and should give a nicer drape. Yes there is a color difference. Above a Teal yarn in tabby. Below the second scarf on the loom using a navy tabby yarn.
Tabby: Navy 16/2 Bamboo
The plants are beginning to think Spring has arrived in Houston. Hopefully they will look this nice after the rain stops.
Chinese fringe flower
When looking through sample books from Cross Country Weavers, I found myself having treadle envy. I’m sure your asking yourself what could she possibly be talking about. My loom has 8 harnesses and 10 treadles. The sample that I found myself interested in weaving needed 7 harnesses ( no problem) . Alas, it used 11 treadles. A couple of years earlier I had designed a piece needing more treadles than I possessed. Here Tim’s Treadle Reducer program comes to the rescue. You enter in the shafts, and treadles in the original design, and the number of shafts and treadles on your loom.
Click on ” Make a grid” , to go to next step below: Entry
Treadle Reducer Entry Treadle Reducer results
In reducing the number of treadles needed to weave the design, treadling becomes more involved. At times you need to depress two treadles at the same time. A small price to pay to weave more complex designs.
This program has allowed me to begin weaving a scarf inspired by a sample by Sally Orgren in Cross Country Weavers, March 2008, using a Bateman Blend pattern. The photo at the top, shows what will become the backside of my scarf. So follow the blog to see the finished scarf in a future post.