Innovation

Electric Spinning Wheel Fits in the Palm of Your Hand

When engineer Maurice Ribble’s girlfriend (now wife) asked him to make a travel-ready spinning wheel, he put his mind to work developing a system. Designing a machine that was portable, affordable, and easy to use eventually brought him to the Electric Eel, and he ran a successful Kickstarter campaign to fund the little spinner in December 2017. Ribble is back with the Electric Eel Wheel Mini 2, an updated design that allows knitters to spin their own yarn anywhere.

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Guerilla Knitta Magda Sayeg in Conversation with Steven Pozel

Yarnbombing, guerrilla knitting, or yarnstorming… call it what you will. Queen and founder of the knit graffiti movement, Magda Sayeg, will employ a handmade aesthetic to Sussex lane for the Laneway Art program as part of the Art & About festival later this month, and infuse the urban landscape with warmth and congeniality.
Go to www.object.com.au

2011 Lexus “The Hard Way” Material Breakthroughs


Why weave a chassis? The pursuit of perfection means striving to create the lightest and strongest possible materials. See how Lexus takes the hard way in reinventing the manufacturing process — via YouTube

The Peter Collingwood Trust Fund

Following the death of Peter Collingwood his family have set up a trust in his name. Peter was known for his innovative approach to weaving and they hope that the trust will encourage people to keep pushing the boundaries and discover the next new thing.
Each year the trust will award a grant of £1000 to the person that has shown the most innovation relating to a loom based textile.
Applicants are asked to submit up to 6 images (300dpi) and supporting text of not more than 500 words by 31 July to:

Peter Collingwood Charitable Trust
Old School, Nayland
Colchester, Essex
CO6 4JH, UK

The successful applicant will be notified by 31 August. Any CDs, photos or text sent by applicants will not be returned.

MIT Labs Moves Ahead In Synthesising Spider Silk

Synthetic spider silk, like lycra in many ways, has a number of unique properties. The MIT lab that created it is being monitored by military elements, keenly interested in applications of this material to front-line technologies. The secret of spider silk’s combined strength and flexibility, according to scientists, has to do with the arrangement of the nano-crystalline reinforcement of the silk as it is being produced — in other words, the way these tiny crystals are oriented towards and adhere to the stretchy protein. Emulating this process in a synthetic polymer, the MIT team focused on reinforcing solutions of commercial rubbery substance known as polyurethane elastomer with nano-sized clay platelets instead of simply heating and mixing the molten plastics with reinforcing agents
MIT Labs Moves Ahead In Synthesizing Spider SilkExtremeTech

iCord Maker

Betz White shows you how to use a cool crafty gadget, the Magicord Knitter (looks like it’s now called Embellish-Knit) which lets you crank the handle and knit a long cord in an instant. More automagically created i-cord than than you can poke a stick at.
iCordbetz’s blog (via MAKE: Blog)

How Bio-Fabric is Made

The basic material is a polyester fibre called PPT (polypropylene terephthalate) which is produced by combining 1-3PDO (propanediol) from maize with terephthalic acid, a petroleum-based component.
Honda improved the stability of the material by producing very fine fibres and spinning them into a multi-strand yarn. The flexibility of this yarn enabled it to weave a soft, pleasant-feeling yet durable upholstery material suitable for mass production using existing weaving processes.
Honda has been using the concept of LCA (life cycle assessment) to reduce carbon dioxide emissions throughout the entire life cycle of a vehicle — from production and usage to disposal.
Bio-fabric will enable the company to reduce the energy used during the production process by 10-15 percent compared to the production of petroleum-based polyester material, due to the use of plant-based ingredients in the raw material.
This can reduce the carbon dioxide produced in building a car by 5kg.
How bio-fabric is madeMotoring & Independent Online

The Spinning Drill

Ruth’s husband Tom whipped her up a spinning gadget made from an electric drill and they documented their efforts.

Ok then folks, as promised I will detail below this secret spinning gadget of ours. The original idea came from Tom, who saw my vain efforts and frustration at using a drop spindle for the first time after years of using a wheel (and then years of not using either). Together we’ve developed this, thinking about speed, direction, angle of spin, plying and so on. We do have plans for revision, but only because one of the main components is Tom’s favourite toy and he’s been feeling bereft of it lately. Yep, it’s a drill. Simple as that.

The Spinning Drillwoolly wormhead’s ripping yarns… (via anzweavespin)

Totally Nanotubular

In August, the University of Texas at Dallas (UTD) found a pathway to a major scientific breakthrough – and that pathway is made of extremely small tubes.
Researchers at the UTD NanoTech Institute, in conjunction with an Australian national laboratory (CSIRO), found a quick and easy way to weave nanotube sheets out of freestanding carbon nanotubules, paving the way for commercial applications.
A paper published Aug. 19 in the journal Science announced the findings.

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Chameleon Shawl

People lacking any sense of fashion no longer need worry about their scarf clashing with their clothes this winter — researchers have created one that automatically changes colour to suit an outfit.
The colour-shifting garment, dubbed a chameleon shawl, was developed by Akira Wakita and colleagues at Keio University in Tokyo, Japan.
Interwoven into the scarf material are pixels containing red, blue and green light-emitting diodes (LEDs), so adjusting the brightness of each type of diode turns the scarf a different overall shade.
A small sensor embedded in the garment also enables it to identify the colour of the nearest item of clothing. A microcomputer then selects a suitable colour for the scarf itself to adopt.

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