I have recently purchased a 16 shaft Countermarch Toika Floor Loom and I am having trouble tying the lamms to the treadles (it came with very basic instruction so I have just been following instructions from various different websites with not much luck). From what i understand the bottom lamms need to attach to the treadles in a particular way that depends on what structures I want to weave. I have done this and have a warp on the loom all ready to go however when I take out the two stabilizing pins/rods that are placed through the holes at the very top of the loom holding it all level, the upper and bottom lamms tangle into each other not sitting in the correct horizontal position they had previously been in.
I have only ever used a Peg operated Dobby Floor Loom before so this is very alien to me. If anyone can help or has any advice it would be very much appreciated.
Your lamms will probably shift a little when you take the pins out, but upper & lower lamms shouldn't tangle with each other.
Joanne Hall's book "Tying Up the Countermarch Loom", available here http://www.glimakrausa.com/products-booksanddvds.html is one of the best books I've ever seen for getting acquainted with a countermarch tie-up. Another one I like is The Big Book of Weaving, available at the same site.
One more recommendation is Madelyn Van Der Hooght's article http://www.weaversschool.com/docs/Countermarch.pdf
Keep working on it, these are lovely looms & I'm sure you'll enjoy weaving on it!
Although I agree that the lamms shouldn't tangle, remember that it is the *shed* (when stepping on a treadle) that should be even.
You write "the bottom lamms need to attach to the treadles" - that is true, but the upper lamms should be tied, too. The upper lamms are what make the shafts go down, so they should be tied opposite to how the lower lamms are tied. Thus, if you have (say) 8 shafts and 8 treadles, you have to tie 8x8=64 ties.
And... you *have* a warp on, don't you? Making (rather: evaluating) tie-ups on a naked loom is nearly impossible.
Hi Gemma, the Toika has adjustable heights for the lams. The space between the bottom shaft bar, upper lam, lower lam and treadles should be an equal space from each other as possible.
Y strings from the upper jacks go thru the center hole in the lower lams and the shorter strings from the bottom shaft bar go thru the center hole in the upper lam. It is generally preferred to tie the lams so they lie parallel, I sometimes find tying them so the angle rises a tad away from the pivot point helps (but that is on a small Toika) - just another option.
When tying up the treadles - for example plain weave, shafts 1 & 3 should be tied using the ties from the lower lams (bottoms up) and then shafts 2 & 3 should be tied from the upper lam to same treadle. Whatever shafts are tied to raise, the remaining shafts need to be tied to the same treadles to lower giving a true countermarch shed. Toika has all lams the same length, this causes the lams sometimes not to lie parallel when removing the locking pins, as long as they are not interferring or obstructing and your shed is good, I would'nt worry too much about it. If it is problematic you may have too few treadles tied to weight everything, try tying up a a spare treadle with plain weave. Your treadles are also adjustable in height.
When tying up many shafts (say more than 4) make your treadle ties slightly longer in front and decrease in length the farther back on the treadle. Joanne Hall's book "Tying Up the Countermarch Loom" is a great resource. One problem I find with Toika is the holes in the treadles are very small making it awkward to thread the tie up. A skinny crochet hook helps.
I have a Toika Liisa and would be happy to send pics if you need. Just pm me.
I recently helped a couple weavers who have Toika looms and one was a 16 shaft loom. If you tell me how many shafts you are using and how many treadles, I can make some suggestions. Refrain from using more than four shafts and six treadles if you are not familiar with this loom.
As Kerstin said, you need to complete the tie up. If you have threaded four shafts, you will have four treadle cords on each treadle and you should tie up at least four treadles. You may also want to tie up an extra treadle on the far right. Tie a cord from all the lower lamms to this extra treadle. Toika looms have lower lamms which are identical to the upper lamms. The lower lamms may need some extra weight to balance the shafts and keep them from falling. The extra treadle will do this. Add extra weight if the shafts still fall when you take the locking pins out.
There is a choice for the placement of the metal rods which hold the lamms, so be sure to put them on the settings which place the lamms at a logical height, so that the lamms can be equal distance from each other and from the shafts and treadles. There is also a choice of heights for the metal rod which holds the treadles. The weaving position is the lower one on the looms I have seen.
The most common mistake I have seen weavers make is to tie the treadles much too high. They should be just a few inches off the floor and be close to touching the floor (or touching the floor) when the shed is large enough.
Thank you for all the useful tips and advice!
I invested in a couple of books which have greatly helped too and I am now weaving away with no problems.
Thank you all again
Hi Gemma, Yippee! Good for you, enjoy your loom!
I wondered which books you bought to help with tying up countermarch.
I have a toika aswell, and have little information. Just doing alot of research online.