November 27, 2010 at 6:43 pm #253797
So someone can clean it and have it ready for me to spin??? do places like that exsist..i read on farmama;s blog that she sent hers away but shes in usa..hope we do have such a placeNovember 27, 2010 at 10:53 pm #483626
I think there’d be somewhere you could send it, if you don’t want to do it yourself. I’d love to buy some wool straight shorn off the sheeps back and process it till I can make something with it, but my mother says it’s a very messy job, and time consuming. You could look up how to do it yourself, otherwise ask someone else to do it for you. Perhaps advertise in the local community paper?November 27, 2010 at 11:46 pm #483627
Do you want the bad news, or the bad news??
Firstly – there USED to be a place. The CSIRO ran a small-scale scouring plant in Victoria. They closed it. Rumour has it that someone in South Australia bought the equipment, but they haven’t started using it.
Here in SA there is a lady who imported some equipment to mill alpaca fleece into yarn. But she only deals with alpaca and she it is a bit pricey.
Latest news – in WA, the big processor of sheep and wool products has recently announced they are closing down their fibre processing plant. The extent of what this means for Australian spinners and yarn manufacturers is not yet known by me, but I am concerned.
It does seem a little ridiculous that out of all the countries in the world, the one that was supposedly built “on the sheep’s back” is closing it’s production facilities.
There may be smaller businesses out there that will process raw fleece but I am not aware of them at this stage. Doing it by hand may be your next best option. It is time consuming but there are ways to reduce the effort involved – coating your sheep is one way (having them wear little jackets so the fleece doesn’t pick up as much vegetable matter/grass seeds etc). Washing fleece uses a fair bit of water and a reasonable amount of patience.
I do mine in baskets in the bathtub. Fill bath with warm-hot water, fill baskets with fleece, (plastic baskets from cheap stores with holes in the bottom as well as the sides), add detergent to water, then add baskets to bathtub. Soak. Remove baskets after 20 or so minutes, drain greasy dirty water, repeat. And then rinse in a similar fashion.
The hotter the water, the more lanolin/grease/dirt will be removed from the fleece. The more you agitate (move)the fleece around, the more likely you will end up with a disaster of felted mess.
After that, I spread out fleece on an old jumper-drying rack outside to dry. Once it’s dry, I run it through the drum carder – or stick it in the dye pot then rinse again then dry again then run it through the drum carder.
You will end up with a batt, not a long plait of roving – but you can turn your batts into rovings by using a little disk with a hole in the middle (called a diz) I reckon you could use a washer if you wanted to LOL
Holler if you need any more info.
AliJanuary 13, 2011 at 7:13 pm #483628
Hi Alicat – the csiro plant was purchased by a carpet company in Melbourne –
Cant remember the name off top of head but it starts with a v and they do all the alpaca carpet
They also purchased the Long Tops (ex Geelong) carding and gilling machines – they have set up the scour but at last contact they don’t have a drier set up (csiro kept that to dry cotton) and are not processing wool as yet but have promised to contact the BCSBAA as soon as it is up and running with costs etc.
The black and coloured sheep breeders assoc- had a lot to do with seeking gov assistance to keep the scour going unfortunately to no avail –
there are still a few small (100kg min) processors about, Goldfields Mohair reg do a coloured wool run –
Marshalley how did you go with the spinning Book I sent up? if its only a single fleece you want done – I’d be happy to scour it and run it through the drum carder here, the result isn’t as flash as you get as I can’t pick it clean and gill it like the pro’s do.
Or if there are a few fleeces and they are similar style and micron colour etc -you can pop them in with my next batch/s that go off (march) and send you back the tops.
I will be sending
Choc Merino 20-23mic
Black Merino X 22-26mic
White Merino 20-22mic
mid grey Corriedale 24-28mic
Dark grey Perendale 28+ mic
if you are interested PM me and I’ll send you all the costs and details etc.
RoogzJanuary 13, 2011 at 10:30 pm #483629
i have not recived it 🙁January 14, 2011 at 3:08 pm #483630
Damn – don’t stress it was a little paper back had a couple of copies anyway – i’ll have another look through see if there’s anything else I can send Reg post.
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