flying shuttle flying off

While weaving my current project on my AVL PDL, the shuttle keeps flying off the race.  On the right side, it usually goes over the cord but ends up in box just fine. This has happened occasionally in the past, but usually only a few times in weaving a 10 yard warp.  Most of the problem is on the left side, though, where it always ends up on the floor.  And it happens 2 to 3 times more than the right side.

I can't feel anything wrong with either the shuttle or the shuttle race that would cause it to go off course.  Once I believe I saw the shuttle going through the shed at an angle before falling to the floor.

Should I be waxing the shuttle or the shuttle race? Can you think of anything that might be causing this?  Here's a picture of the cords for the fly shuttle, although it doesn't show the whole thing, so you can see how it's set up.



Posted on Thu, 12/17/2009 - 00:51

Just curious why the shuttle would go over the fly shuttle cord - or is that what you meant?

Otherwise there are a number of reasons why a shuttle would launch - the boxes are out of alignment with the race?  The pirn isn't seated properly on the spindle?  Too high a tension on the weft?  A textured weft that is catching in the shuttle?  A poorly wound pirn?  A couple of threads are twisted in the reed making an unclear shed? 

That's all I can think of off the top of my head, but I'm sure there are others....


Posted on Thu, 12/17/2009 - 00:53

one more thing - all of the above will be increased when the warp is 'too narrow' allowing the shuttle lots of empty space to fly off track......


Posted on Thu, 12/17/2009 - 04:32

Maybe it's the warp width then.  It's a 60" loom, but the warp is only 12".  The yarn is 10/2 mercerized cotton so no lumps or bumps and I wound the pirns carefully like I always do.  The next warp is for baby blankets so will be considerably wider and will tell me if it's caused by the width of the warp.

And yes, it does go over the cord to fly shuttle.  I guess it must dangle over the shuttle race sometimes at just the right time when the shuttle is going across.

Thanks Laura!

Posted on Thu, 12/17/2009 - 07:43

I know some people successfully use the fly shuttle on narrow warps, but if I'm beaming a warp less than 50% of the weaving width of the loom I use a hand shuttle.  :)



Posted on Thu, 12/17/2009 - 08:19

Sometimes I experience the shuttle-going-over-the-cord problem, too. I have trained myself to sort of flick the cord out of the way of the shuttle, but I can't describe how I'm doing. *If* it goes over the cord, it is always on the right-hand side.
Unlike Tina, if I shoot the shuttle off-race, it also happens more often on the right-hand side.
I have found that 20" is about the narrowest warp I can weave "flying" (my loom is 60"), but I have to go slower.

Posted on Fri, 12/18/2009 - 01:09

Other than a short sample that I wove for this project, everything has been at least 20" wide.  I was pretty tired yesterday from doing a lot of weaving and my back was sore too, maybe because I was adding a supplemental metallic weft in the middle in spots,   It just made my weaving awkward and I think affected the way I was pulling on the cord.  But I finished it today and hope to get it wet finished tomorrow.  I am sooooooo glad I've finished this piece.  I've been nervous the entire time about making a mistake on it.  Hopefully I won't find any bad surprises after washing it.

Thanks for all your help!

Posted on Tue, 03/09/2010 - 03:36

I have the problem of my shuttle going over the cord, but only on the left side.  One thing about the shuttle going out of the shuttle race that wasn't mentioned (I don't think), is that sometimes lint builds up in the shuttle and causes the thread to jerk and bind.  I have found that to be the problem several times. Also, as Laura mentioned, a sticky warp thread will send the shuttle flying and usually break the warp thread to boot!

Posted on Tue, 03/09/2010 - 12:43

I currently have a 40" warp on the loom and there have been no problems.  The warp keeps the cord off the shuttle race, so I think it's just a problem with narrower warps.

Posted on Tue, 03/09/2010 - 16:19

My current warp is 30" on a 60" wide loom and several times an hour the shuttle goes around the cord.  I would love to hear from other AVL weavers to see if this is a universal problem.  I do weave scarves that are narrow on this loom and don't seem to have a worse problem than with wider warps and  think something else is at play here, but can't put my finger on what it might be.

Posted on Tue, 08/17/2010 - 15:51

Is your warp "off centered" on the loom.  Narrow warps should be off centered 1/2 the length of the shuttle when using a flying shuttle.  If you are off centered to the right (facing the loom) the yarn should come out of the end feed shuttle facing you.  If off centered to the left the yarn should come out of end feed facing the reed.  More problems usually occur when off centered to the right because of the yarn being on the outside (facing the weaver) it's easier to be pulled off its track. 

Also, check to see if your loom is "squared" and the race is level.



Posted on Wed, 08/18/2010 - 00:48

I'm pretty sure this is it.  I had it off-centered, but only by one 2" section and it needs to be two sections I think.  I have to weave off a baby blanket warp, then try again with a towel warp I have partially wound on the sectional beam.  It won't be as narrow as the problem warp mentioned in this thread, but I remember having it happen a few times with towels too.

Posted on Wed, 08/18/2010 - 02:49

Hi Tina,

The only thing that occurs to me is that with such a narrow warp the shuttle can easily tangle with the cord because there are no warp threads keeping the cord above the weaving.

You will need to try and figure out some way to flick the cord out of the way when you throw the shuttle.



Posted on Thu, 08/19/2010 - 01:39

Yes.  I forgot that sometimes it would go over the cord too.  I think maybe I just gotta give up the fly shuttle for the narrow warps.  I can weave so much faster with it though -- except when I have to keep picking up the shuttle.

Posted on Thu, 08/19/2010 - 15:55

Yes, but sometimes slower (hand throwing) is faster than faster (fly shuttle flying off).  :}  Have you watched my videos showing how I hold and throw the shuttle?  I'm slowly loading all my videos (that I can) to You Tube but if you go to my blog and click on the Video Clip label to the right (scroll down - scroll waaaaaay down) I think I have a couple of video clips there.



Posted on Fri, 08/20/2010 - 03:12

I know what you mean Laura.  When it works it's faster, when it doesn't I spend a lot of time picking up the shuttle and getting the yarn straightened out.  I do get more exercise that way, though ;-)

Posted on Sun, 09/12/2010 - 03:21

Tina--Sorry for the late comment.  With narrow warps and using a flyshuttle, the warp should be "off centered" 1/2 the length of the flyshuttle you are using.  If the flyshuttle is 12" long, the warp should be off centered 6 inches (that would be 3 two inch sections).

I have successfully woven many handtowels at 21" wide (on a 48" AVL) without "off centering.  Scarves I usually do at 11" wide and always off center them.


Posted on Sat, 09/18/2010 - 04:17

Shim the reed: if there's gap or uneven spot between the end of the reed and the box, the shuttle can launch into the air.

Posted on Wed, 10/06/2010 - 01:03

It seems to be resolved.  I make sure the reed is centered, so there's no gap at either end.  And I moved the warp over 2 sections (4") instead of one like I did before.  I haven't had it happen once on the 18 yard warp that's almost finished.  

I'm still trying to work out the best way to pull the cord on the flying shuttle.  I actually burst a blood vessel in my thumb, apparently from too much pressure there.  So I just changed the way I hold it and it's going better now.

Thanks for all the advice.