I recently bought a Cassandra Loom built by Thought Products, and I'm realizing the brake system is quite a mystery.  Is anyone familiar with these looms who can help me out?

Thanks! Courtney



Claudia Segal (not verified)

Hi Coutney,

If you post a picture we may be able to help even if we are not familiar with Thought Products.  There are several different types of brakes and many looms have very similar designs.

If you need help with adding a photo to your comments, there is a video in the Help section

courtney cox (not verified)

Thank you Claudia, I'll take a photo and post it.



Did the loom come with the manual? TP usually put in a decent drawing of how the friction brakes wrapped. Janet Meany at The Weavers Friend site has a manual on the Cassandra. I no longer have a TP or manual, but the front friction brake was pretty straight forward, the back one tended to be fussy and it took a good amount of time to get it right. Trial and error with that one wrapping it and then seeing if the beam releases correctly. You will need to take some of the tension off the front when advancing. The Barbara V had quite the jerk and jump if you didn't. I would suspect looking at the braking system on yours it might do the same thing. Sorry not to be more help.

kellytwo (not verified)

Hi Courtney,  I just bought the Cassandra loom too. I have the manual but it doesn't say very much about the brake system. It's the one think I don't like about the loom. There is a dowel attached to the brake treadle that pulls on a spring to cause a tight friction on the brake. When the dowel is released and the brake is given some slack, you can advance the warp. Would you like me to scan anything in the manual that has a reference to the brake and send it to you?  Other than the brake system, I love the loom.


courtney cox (not verified)

Thank you all for your input. I do have the Cassandra manual, but it is no help with this brake function issue: all parts are present.  I'm going to need to experiment with the wrapping, as suggested.  More later  Thanks again

courtney cox (not verified)

Hi Doreen,

I have a manual for the Cassandra, but there are no intructions in it for using the brake.  Does yours have info re: brake use and adjustment?  If so, I would love anything else I can get my hands on.  I'm unclear about how to even begin on this....     Thanks so much, Courtney

pine tree (not verified)

I have a new to me Cassandra and the manual from Janet Meany.  The spring is sprung and has a cable attached to it.  Also the MIDDLE of  metal band is welded to a bolt in the frame. Is that like yours.   How have you set up yours?  How do you get good friction from the metal bands on the metal drums?   Any suggestions as to a better braking mechanism ? 

pine tree (not verified)

My Cassandra has 4" slots on either side of the beam to hang the beater /reed frame to adjust its length (height).  How should this be adjusted?

How have you effectively tie-ed on your apron rods- no instructions? 

Any links to more instructional info? I only have the assembly manual from Janet Meany.   Thanks.

SallyE (not verified)

I have a Barbara IV, and have not worked on a Casandra.   But, the thing I finally realized about the BIV is that the back (warp beam) brake holds when tension is applied, but the front brake (cloth beam) holds then the the tension is OFF.   I'm not explaining this correctly, I know, but the combination of the friction brake and springs on the front brake makes it work the opposite of the back brake.  

I don't know if the Casandra works the same or not, but if you are having trouble with the brake it might help.


Rob and Mindy H

Great info on a rare old loom guys, thank you. I just purchased a Cassandra in almost new condition but the brake system is all out of adjustment. Once I get it home I'll work at it till I get it. Need to order what Janet Meany has on it too.


Hi I have just set up a Cassandra loom -about 80% set up - that has been in my sister's basement for 30 years.  I have the manual- but would like a clearer picture of the brake system. My loom is an 8-harness and doesn't seem to match any of the pictures in the manual.. Is anyone able to take closeup pictures of the brake system and email/post them? - Also, I am a new weaver and would love to take a lesson or lessons on using this particular loom.  I am in a suburb of Cleveland, Ohio - but will be willing to travel within driving range.  Thanks, joan


Can anyone provide anything like a manual (assembly or usage instructions) for the THOUGHT PRODUCTS CASSANDRA. I've recently purchased one and it's a bit more complicated that I thought. Any ideas RE: where I can find a manual would be appreciated. 


Does anyone have a Cassandra loom manual? Just got one and not sure how to make it work. Thanks, Lyvon


Does anyone have a manual that I can get a copy of? Thanks, Lyvon

sally orgren

Anyone seeking a manual for this loom could send a PM (Private Message) to previous posters requesting a copy.