Monday, May 12, 2008

Fiber Prep, Day 1

I did manage to get started with my raw mohair today. I spread it all out on a sheet on the front porch and picked out all of the fecal matter, big bits of vegetation, and clotted/felted clumps. There was actually much less waste than I expected. This is what I threw away.

After picking out all of the totally gross stuff I started going through the fiber more carefully to remove smaller bits of vegetable matter, second cuts that would be too short to spin, and to just get rid of some of the dirt. Doing this I did find more fiber that went into the trash pile, but not much.
On first glance, most of the locks would look like a tangled clotted mess, but a bit of finger teasing, or a couple flicks with the dog comb would smooth it all out, get rid of some of the excess dirt, and bring some of the fiber's natural lustre out.
It was a cool windy day, which was probably not the best day for this sort of activity, but I did get about half of the fiber sorted.
Besides my trash pile I had two piles of good fiber. One that had been thoroughly picked through, with all second cuts, VM, excess dirt, and other undesirable stuff picked out. The second still needs to be gone through more closely.

After bagging up the fibers I was left with this pretty mess on my sheet.
The photos below show the cleaned up fiber. The one on the top is a close up of the more carefully cleaned bag of fiber, and the one on the bottom is the batch that I will go through again.
Originally I was planning to wash the fiber in small batches, but I am now leaning towards doing it all at once in the bath tub.
I'll continue to post as I go through the process.


Joansie said...

Interesting, Brian. What are using for soap to wash it with. I am purchasing some of the Kookabara that knitpicks sells and was used at my spinning classes.

Lil Knitter said...

I have a new respect for anyone who is into roving, spinning...etc. I know that it's a lot of work but WOW..that's a lot of work. I know for certain that I don't have the patience for that. You have to really love what you do.


yarnspider said...

Looks to be good stuff, good luck washing and carding.

The Woolley Farm said...

It's beauty-tee-full!!! What a great deal you got and I can't wait to see what you do with it.

LDSVenus said...

I keep saying someday. I want to try that myself, someday :). When things calm down and I find my zen again. Keep us appraised on how the process is working for you. Are you going to do rolags and combine it with some wool or just spin straight from the lock?

Cat said...

WOW!!! I bet that stuff is going to be gorgeous spun up. I can't wait to see what you do with it.