The Acadian Wheel Spins!!

Hello 🙂

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I am so happy! I’ve been working on finishing the restoration of the Acadian Wheel – I made her new leather flyer bearings, new axle bearings (also from leather, soaked in water and shaped into a ‘u’ shape and allowed to dry in place with the wheel in place as well), tied on a (temporary) string footman and figured out how her alignment works!

So, how she looked when she had her first (undrilled) bearing made, and all fitted…
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I discussed making that bearing here, using shoe leather and an old belt…I ended up dying it with leather dye, after creating a hole for the orifice, using first a drill and then carving it a little bigger…

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I used a bit of belt leather, dyed it with leather dye, for the back bearing – you can kind of see it (undyed) in this picture…

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Since she was flyer and bobbin-less when she came to live with us, my Vezina Slider has graciously offered to share her flyer and bobbin. She very wisely realised that I can only spin on one wheel at a time. I’m going to keep my eyes open for a suitable replacement.

She has no tensioning system so I had to figure out a way around that. I’ve made the back maiden (which holds the flyer with a leather bearing) the mobile maiden so that the flyer can be removed by removing a peg and twisting the maiden. The leather bearing itself I made with longer ‘tails’ than usual to allow the bearing to slip forward, in order to allow me to tie on the drive band and then, by pulling it back towards the maiden, to adjust tension on that band. I then used a square nail (one of the many ‘bits’ from the wheel that are left over) to wedge between the two ‘tails’, from the back of the maiden, in order to hold the leather in place where I put it. I think, in theory, this will allow me to somewhat tension the wheel.

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It turns out, with this flat rim wheel, that the angles are all important. The wheel was made with large pegs that fit into the wheel uprights, beneath the table. These, it turns out!, adjust the angle of the wheel, allowing you to line it up with the flyer properly. I have managed to make her work as a double drive wheel – which I believe she always was, judging by the double groove worn in the wheel rim.

One of the pegs was missing so I used the existing one as a pattern…and a bit of old lath, lol – we’re doing some renovating. I had to wittle the lath down because it was a little too thick at first…

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You can see, in this picture, how the uprights are not in a straight line – they help the wheel align with the flyer…

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The angle looks like this…

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4 thoughts on “The Acadian Wheel Spins!!

  1. Thank you for your insight on replacing worn leather bearings for the maidens. I have a Haltec spinning wheel from the 1970s and will need to think about replacing the leather bearings in the future. Your blog is a wonderful resource of pictures, and I just love your Lazy Kate!

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