How To Make Your Own Spindle Wheel
Visit your local craft shop that offers wooden products and other accessories. Purchase a wooden car wheel measuring about 2 to 3 inches in diameter, which will become the whorl part of the spindle. The wheel should already have been drilled with a hole in the very middle which prevents the spindle from wobbling once it spins. Next, look for a dowel rod that fits right at the middle hole of the wheel. This will become the spindle shaft. The dowel rods measure 3 feet long once you buy these. Cut the shaft around 9 to 12 inches, so that 3 to 4 spindles can be created using a single dowel rod.
More on the Process
After cutting the dowel rod, place and push it at the center hole of the whorl or wheel, letting around 1 to 1.5 inches to stick out at the base. This is referred to as the bottom-whorl spindle or low-whorl. Drill a small hole at the shaft center. Experts recommend that you use a 5/64 drill bit. Buy a cup hook measuring 1/4 inch then screw it right onto the shaft top. This will be the catch of the yarn to prevent it from slipping off the end as you spin. Sharpen the bottom end of the shaft to a dull point using a pencil sharpener so that you can spin the spindle on a small bowl or a table top similar to a top, if you prefer it supported.
The Leader Yarn
You can now add the leader yarn, to begin the fiber on the spindle. You can use some yarn bought from your local store or a homemade one measuring around 12 to 14 inches in length. Tie the yarn tightly to the shaft just over the whorl. Bring the leader yarn over the side of the whorl, looped over the base inch that sticks out. This will stabilize the yarn then balance the whorl spin. Bring the leader yarn back up over the whorl side then loop it on the hook. Leave 2 inches of yarn to begin the fiber on. Beginners are encouraged to spin on the spindle first, before progressing to spinning on the wheel.
To Start Spinning
You will need a few things to begin spinning. First, you need a drop spindle that is well-balanced. Choose a spindle that does not weigh too much. Bring 1/2 ounce of prepared fiber, preferably wool of medium-grade of the right color, a small masking tape and a piece of wool starter yarn measuring 24 to 30 inches in length.
The Drop Spindle
It is very important that you get a good drop spindle. The simple models work efficiently. There are various types of spindles, with different weights, forms and sizes. The basic drop spindle elements include groove, shaft and whorl. The regular drop spindle normally measures around 9 to 15 inches long, while the drop spindle whorls measure around 2 to 3 inches. Drop spindles are usually made of wood and twirl in midair while spinning.