Peggy’s Weaving Tips > Warping drum: Part Two

Plans for a Homemade Drum
Part Two

A homemade drum is what is practical today as commercial ones aren’t made to my knowledge. I had a carpenter make mine from a photograph of the one that Jim Ahrens had in our studio.

Making a Warping Drum


Weaving with a Warping Drum A
Weaving with a Warping Drum A

A warping drum is a wooden drum 1 to 2 feet in diameter and about 18″ to 20″ long that turns on an axle supported in a sturdy wooden frame. A homemade drum could be made of wood-sanded smooth so yarns won’t snag-or an oil or paint drum. For plain beaming only, the larger diameter is better because you won’t have as much sagging to deal with. The smaller diameter drum can be used when combining sectional and plain beaming, but a large diameter drum would work too. The figure shows a 17″ diameter drum, large enough for plain beaming. The axle is a 3/4″ pipe and is about 27″ above the floor.

A rope about the thickness of a clothesline is attached to the back of the frame, carried 1 and 1/2 times around the drum, and has a bucket or can for weights attached to its free end. The can of weights is on the front side of the drum like in the illustration. Another thinner but sturdy cord about 35 feet long is fastened securely to the center of the drum and wound around it. The cord should be able to hold 100 pounds and have a loop in the free end. Its winding direction depends upon the intended use. For regular beaming on a plain beam, the cord goes in the same direction as the rope with the weights as in the illustration. For combining plain and sectional beaming, the cord winds around in the direction opposite from the rope with the weights. See the Combining Sectional and Plain Beaming chapter.


The above tip is an excerpt from  Book 2: “Warping Your Loom and Tying On New Warps”


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