I’ve had the most wonderful time this week in Norway with Vibeke Vestby trialling the new TC2 and looking at the looms which are going to be heading out to Convergence. I wish I was going with them!! These new looms are so much more elegant in appearance than the TC1 and work really well!
I was there to try some of my more loom-taxing dimension-creating weave structures on the looms to see how they would cope with non-traditional methods. There were occasional heddles that stayed either up or down, but so few and I learnt a really cool way to allow for those. The engineers at Tronrud Engineering are really helpful and listen to thoughts and suggestions, coming up with elegant solutions in a very short time. I am really impressed with the set up and the willingness of the staff to improve, trial and adopt new ideas or suggestions. It is so lovely to feel that the weaver’s experience of weaving on the loom is really valued and the user definitely comes first!
One of the issues I originally had with the TC1 was the slowness of the shed change. The TC2 is a much faster loom and even with a single shuttle, although not up to the speeds I can achieve on my dobby loom, the weaving rhythm was smooth and swift enough for my impatience!! When you have two or more shuttles to juggle, that speed is certainly not an issue.
I tested two looms whilst I was there – one with a mercerized cotton warp 20/2 sett at 60 epi with 2640 warp ends over a weaving width of 48″ (I think), 3 modules in the width, and 4 modules deep; and a 90 epi, 1320 hook loom (again mercerized cotton 20/2) with a weaving width of about 14″(?) approx, with 2 modules in the width, and 6 deep. The loom action was smooth and responsive on both.
I also helped a little with the threading of a 12 module deep narrow warp sett at 180 epi. It’s fun to watch weavers work out tips and tricks to get around a new experience, and the lateral thinking of Vibeke, Katya and Aino-Maria created a neat way to thread a loom this deep.
Vibeke will be taking 4 looms to Convergence this time, with setts varying from 30 – 180 epi, featuring 6 – 12 modules and weaving widths from 18″ – 56″. Do go and try them out if you are at Long Beach. I can guarantee you will find the experience enjoyable. This is jacquard at its most friendly and approachable! One day I plan to have my own but in the meantime, I will take any opportunity I get to weave on one!!
And did I mention that the TC2 is more affordable than the TC1?? How many more reasons do you need to try it for yourself!!
Oh – and go and check out the TC2 and TC1 facebook page which has recently been set up, and if you like what you see, click ‘Like’! Help to spread the word about this fab new loom!!