Lluis Grau, textilesnaturales´ technician and sales manager has the challenge of assembling the loom which is destined to become a second production loom for Anna Champeney, weave teacher and textile designer at textilesnaturales.
The basic loom is an 8-shaft parallel countermarch loom with 10 pedals. But this loom has plenty of enticing extras. The loom we´re setting up has all of these – including a fly shuttle, second back beam, 4 extra shafts and sectional warping beam.
In what state does the loom arrive? It comes in 2 large boxes and quite detailed instructions with text and images. The loom includes assembly tools and an excellent CD with a video in American English on how to set up the loom once assembled.
Spanish clients of textilesnaturales.com also benefit from our translation of the assembly instructions into Castillian Spanish.
How long does it take to assemble the loom? Lluis set the loom up with all the extras but he estimates that in about 8 hours you can set up the basic model of 8-shaft Spring loom.
Will the loom fit in my house? To give you an idea, when the warp beam is removed (this can be done with the warp on) it can be moved without problems from one room to another of a standard home – ie – it fits through doors! The loom measures 115cm wide x 115cm tall x 90cm deep when set up (including the removable warp beam)
Overall rating: “It´s a very well thought-out loom and is very well made – really top quality. Everything lines up perfectly and the wood is really nicely finished. I´ve actually enjoyed assembling it. I´d say it´s medium-difficulty level. The differnet components are very well made – everything fits together perfectly” (Lluis)
Important advice when assembling your Spring loom: There are lots of screws and bits and pieces. It´s vital to familiarise yourself with these before you start assembling the loom. Lay them out first and read the instructions BEFORE you start. If you follow the instructions to the letter – in the correct order – then you shouldn´t have problems. Don´t mix the components from one box with those from the other.
Anna Champeney, what made you choose the Louet Spring loom? My main 8 shaft loom is unnecessarily large and heavy for scarf and cushion projects so I was looking for a well-made and designed loom which could cope with production work – and be easy on my back.
Explain the different features and extras of the Louet Spring loom.
Friction brake – enables me to advance the warp whilst weaving without getting up from the loom.
Fly shuttle – Really makes weaving quicker, as long as I´m using just one shuttle at a time of course.
Sectional warp beam – Great warping method (which my other Teixdors loom also has) for long (20 m … 50m or more) or particularly fine warps. I get a perfect tension every time. I don´t use this method when warping with many different colours though.
Second back beam: For double weave projects with different coloured warps or projects which combine different warp threads – one thick, one fine, or one elastic and another inelastic.
Moving breast beam: This is something I´ll have to test out. It´s a design feature I´ve never come across – a breast beam which moves when you beat. According to Louet it eases tension on the warp ends in the case of very inelastic yarns, reducing breakage. This could be useful when working with metallic threads, for example.
Easily removable beater and breast beam: All weavers will appreciate being able to get up close to the shafts for threading up (back to front warping method). The beater just lifts off, very easy.
Explain briefly the advantages and disadvantages of a countermarch loom:
The main difference weavers experience with the countermarch system is that of the pedals. Each pedal connects to every shaft on the loom according to your weave plan. Each pedal lifts or lowers every shaft, creating a centre shed. This means less stress on the yarns – so fewer breakages, and a good sized shed on every lift combination. Unlike table looms in which each lever operates just one shaft it does mean you have a limited number of sheds available to you. I tend to sample on a table loom for total freedom and then weave the main designs up on a countermarch. On the Spring 90 loom I have 12 shafts and 14 pedals which give me plenty of options. If you enjoy complex weaving patterns though you might find yourself limited by the treadling options. In that case it´s best to think about a dobby loom.
Interested in buying or trying out a Louet Spring countermarch loom in Spain? Contact us for details and prices.