16 hours, 400 miles, 2 states, 1 van, 1 loom.

Yesterday Eric and I had an adventure.

Our adventure concluded with me sitting at my new AVL, 16 harness, A-Series, Compu-Dobby Loom.

Eric and I picked up the loom from Pam Engberg, weaver and teacher at FireWatch Weaver’s in Brimfield, Massachusetts. Pam and I met through the online forum weavolution. For those who do not know, weavolution is a digital community for weavers to meet, share ideas and projects and to problem solve issues they have while working. It is an excellent resource to connect to weavers around the world. Pam and I met over a discussion on articles she had written concerning the different techniques of designing and producing shadow weave fabric.

When Eric and I arrived we immediately got the tour of the loom. It is still something that I will have to sit and learn about all the fine tunings, but there are so many major and tiny improvements over my Kyra loom that it will take my weaving above and beyond what I thought I could do.

The AVL in it's original home in Massachusetts at the FireWatch Weaver's Studio.
The AVL in it’s original home in Massachusetts at the FireWatch Weaver’s Studio.
One method of how to attach the warp to the front beam. Another method would be to lay the warp threads directly on the sandpaper beam to limit the amount of waste used to tie on.
One method of how to attach the warp to the front beam. Another method would be to lay the warp threads directly on the sandpaper beam to limit the amount of waste used to tie on.
Each harness can be individual tensioned. And the harnesses are so light that even if I were to pick up all sixteen at once, I don't feel like I need to be the hulk to do so.
Each harness can be individual tensioned. And the harnesses are so light that even if I were to pick up all sixteen at once, I don’t feel like I need to be the hulk to do so.
Sectional warp beam... I have never done sectional warping. But I am super excited about being able to put on more then 15 yards of warp at a time!
Sectional warp beam… I have never done sectional warping. But I am super excited about being able to put on more then 15 yards of warp at a time!
Instead of having 18 treadles to contend with. I now only have two. One to lift the harnesses, the other to advance to the next step of the pattern in the computer.
Instead of having 18 treadles to contend with. I now only have two. One to lift the harnesses, the other to advance to the next step of the pattern in the computer.

There are also other features, such as the fly-shuttle attachment and an extended cloth storage system so instead of wrapping the cloth around the front beam I can just keep sending it to the back. Even though it is a Compu-Dobby I system, there is still a lot I can do with it, and I can still get the software to run the machine.

Taken apart and in the van! Plus any of the accessories that came with the loom are in there too.
Taken apart and in the van! Plus any of the accessories that came with the loom are in there too.

Temporarily the loom will be stored in Eric’s parents’ basement because my apartment has room for only one big loom at the moment so we are now looking for a studio that I could work from. After we got the loom all packed in the van we drove back and despite having just dissambled this large piece of weaving equipment, we decided to put it back together the same day.

Putting the frame work together.
Putting the frame work together.
This is the jack system that allows for me to adjust the tension of each of the harnesses individually.
This is the jack system that allows for me to adjust the tension of each of the harnesses individually. Pictured in it’s relaxed state. You can see all the chains that will hook to the bottom of the harnesses.
Attaching the Dobby mechanism.
Attaching the Dobby mechanism.
Adjusting each of the individual cables to run in their proper home.
Adjusting each of the individual cables to run in their proper home.
Each cable for each harness runs through a series of pulleys which are then aligned in the side box so that the solenoids can engage them when the compu-dobby unit is mounted on to the loom.
Each cable for each harness runs through a series of pulleys which are then aligned in the side box so that the solenoids can engage them when the compu-dobby unit is mounted on to the loom.
Taking a breather before attaching the second warp beam. The beams are easily removable. One is sectional and the other has been modified to weave narrower warps.
Taking a breather before attaching the second warp beam. The beams are easily removable. One is sectional and the other has been modified to weave narrower warps.
Attaching the harnesses to the hooks- amazed at how light they are.
Attaching the harnesses to the hooks- amazed at how light they are.
Me sitting at the new loom in it's temporary home.
Me sitting at the new loom in it’s temporary home.

I am a weaver who personifies their looms. My little Schacht has no gender, it is fussy and inconsolable at times- but when it works, it does the job wonderfully  So it is “The Baby”. The Kyra loom is large, stubborn, but is a good solid workhorse. She is “Big Momma” because I’m sure she would make it through anything. I don’t quite know how the AVL works yet, but the name “Lola” just seemed fitting. So above is Lola! The newest member of the weaving family.

I can’t wait to sit down and weave my first length of fabric off this loom to show the world.

If you would like to learn more about AVL looms, visit their website at avlusa.com.
Want to see what is happening today in the weaving world? Visit weavolution.com and get involved!
And finally- if you would like to learn more about Pam Engberg and her weaving school FireWatch Weavers, please visit her website here, read her articles, and find out more about this amazing weaver that I have met.

I will keep you updated on my education of how to operate and weave on Lola, the AVL loom! Do you weave on an AVL, what are your thoughts on it?

3 thoughts on “16 hours, 400 miles, 2 states, 1 van, 1 loom.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *