Friday, July 25, 2014

A wool hackle and comb set - I made them!

Most people wouldn't know what these are.  Crafters who deal with raw fleece will.

There are dozens of youtube videos on how to use them, but very few on how to make them.

I did find a tutorial from Moonsong Fiberworks LLC and it's just what I needed.

This one is made out of curly maple and uses 3.5" finishing nails.

It's a little rough but it's all about function over form.  
Total cost:  about $16 and a few hours of labour.  (compared to the ones sold online for over $225 for just the hackle - I think it's a steal!)

I'm still going to stain and varathane it and I'm just going to use a couple of clamps purchased at Canadian Tire to clamp it to the table for use.

Now I have an easier method to comb all the cleaned fleece that I have for spinning! (vs spending hours brushing each individual lock).

My next project: an art blending hackle.  It will definitely be a prettier version, as I finally found a source for the real tines that are used in most that are being sold through websites and etsy stores.

I've already cut the stainless steel 1/8 diameter rod into 6.5" lengths. I have to grind one end of each into a bit of a point, and I have a very nice piece of purpleheart wood to drill the holes and epoxy the tines into.

The art blending hackle will only have one row of tines.  The fibers you add to it should already be combed and fluffed, you just have to diz it off into roving.

Can't wait!!


  1. Looks great! BTW... all the hackles I've seen have had multiple rows of tines. You might want to do a bit more research before you make yours to ensure that you get something you'll be happy with out of your materials.

    1. Blue Mountain Handcrafts recommends a single row of tines for an art hackle since with that you're already using cleaned wool/rovings, and adding sparkles and clean locks. She mentioned its much easier to diz off of with a single row hackle. But for cleaning/combing into a roving, 2 or more rows are recommended.

  2. This is a lost art. I am so glad to know it is alive and well and still going strong!!! I see you are making Bonnie's Jamestown quilt! So am I - I am only about 50 string blocks short, plus all the other pieces I have to do, but I am working on it!! I have made the Orca quilt - and it was a surprise to me that I did get it done!!!! I like it, so I am glad I did keep on the mystery and make it happen!!!

    Have fun with your wool and may the spinning go smoothly! ;-)

    1. Thank you Brenda :) Yes it's very alive here and all over Canada. I didn't realize how much until I got involved.

  3. I love it when people do their own things instead of buy them ($225 was WAY too much). Great work. I know you will get a lot of mileage out of these. Enjoy!

    1. Thanks Chantal... and it really didn't take much work. I've since made a newer/nicer one, and it works wonderfully!

  4. I know this post is super old, but I was wondering....where did you manage to find the tines for the art roving hackle and combs? You mentioned in your post that you had found a source, my email is if you would like to reply there ! Thanks!

    1. I would also love to know where you found the tines at!

  5. I would also like to know where you found the tines. I have searched for weeks.literally

  6. I wonder if you'd share where you found the times? I've been searching for months.

  7. Lacy, and for all others who've asked or who will ask:

    I found the tines at a metal supply shop in town,
    What I purchased from them is 1/8" stainless steel round rod, which comes in 12 foot lengths.
    They were nice enough to cut it in half for me so I could fit it easily into my truck.

    I've seen some at the big box stores, Home Depot, Lowes, Rona, and they seem to call it welding rod. It comes in shorter lengths there and I'm not sure if it's stainless steel, but it was definitely more expensive than what I bought at Loucon. (approx $4 for a 12 foot length).

    When I brought them home, I used a pair of bolt cutters I purchased at Canadian Tire and cut them into the lengths I needed, and then used my bench grinder to sharpen one end of each.

    The metal place did have a fabricating facility right next door, but when I asked them how much it would be for them to cut them and sharpen, they told it it'd be about $90 per hour. It was the guys there that told me I'd be better off going and buying a pair of $20 bolt cutters and a bench grinder to do my own. (was able to get the bench grinder for $60 at Canadian Tire as well).

    I hope that helps.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...