Beater Lights

A bug was put in my brain by a wonderful woman who gets me in trouble a lot.

The problem: When weaving with fresh spun active singles, if you aren't careful you get "pigtails", short sections of yarn that plys back on itself. Pigtails on the front of the cloth are pretty easy to find and deal with, but when they occur on the back side, you don't see them until the cloth is off the loom and require extra work to correct.We theorized that back lighting the warp might create a lightbox type of effect and make them easy to see. She got a small stick on under-cabinet light and stuck it to the lower beater bar.reed support on her AVL and it worked great. The lower reed support on my Meco isn't substanital enough for one of those though.

My solution: Stick on LED strips. I purchased a 24" stick on LED strip from Advance Auto parts for around $25. It's really 2 14" strips that you cut you size. I picked up a small toggle switch at the same time. The lights came wired with a battery pack and a button switch to display the lights. I saved the battery pack and replaced the bottom with a toggle switch to the lights would stay on when I wanted them too. LEDs use very little power so I expect the tester battery pack to last a good long while and when it goes I'm thinking about replacing it with a little solar panel from a calculator or such.

I don't currently have the battery pack and switch mounted permanently. I'm still working out how I want to do that. So I have it taped to the side bar of the beater for the time being.

A few things I have noticed...

You need a fairly close set warp or these will blind you. I'm working on a shield/reflector and will direct the light to the warp/fell without shining it in your eyes.

You don't need other lighting to weave. You can see in great detail how your weave is coming together structually, even in a dark room. Ofcourse, to see colors and their interplay you would want to have good light in the room, but for structure, this is all you need.

Anyway, attached is a picture of my current project (a doubleweave baby blanket) with the loom lights on.


Posted on Tue, 04/26/2011 - 16:52

Great idea.  I have tried clip on lamps in a variety of locations, but gave up attaching them to the loom when the beating caused the bulbs to blow quickly.

Laurie Autio

Posted on Tue, 04/26/2011 - 17:27

Very cool and easy enough.  Thanks for the idea.  We have a Help topic HERE that shows how to add your photos to your post.  

Claudia, Weavo webmistress

Posted on Tue, 04/26/2011 - 18:22

I would have added the photo inline, but I don't have the ftp info for my webspace with me right now. I'll edit the post to show it when I can get it "online-i-fied".


ETA: I linked in the attached photo until I can get it to off-weavo hosting.

Posted on Tue, 04/26/2011 - 21:24

Neat idea!  I wonder if side emitting LEDs would help solve your shining-in-the-eyes problem?

Now I'm thinking of mounting LEDs on the castle of my loom, to give better visibility while weaving...or putting them on the underside of the top of the castle, to give more light while threading.  All sorts of ideas are running through my head! :-)


Posted on Wed, 02/18/2015 - 22:48

I just posted my LED Loom Light design. The details on the LED strips might help someone develop a better Beater Light.