Sep 24

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The Best Spinning Wheel for a Beginner

Buying a New or Used Spinning Wheel

Should I buy a new spinning wheel or buy a used spinning wheel? If you are a beginning spinner I would advise you to purchase a new spinning wheel. The reason is that you might not know enough about spinning wheels to spot a problem when looking at one on craigslist. I know a few people who bought used spinning wheels cheap and when they went to start spinning they would discover that something was missing. Such as the flyer, the bobbin, and usually the drive bands. I have also seen people buy a spinning wheel that was meant for a display. So if you want to be safe I would recommend a new wheel. If you search around you can find some good deals.

If you are already spinning using someone else’s spinning wheel they you can try and take a chance with buying a used spinning wheel. Just make sure you do you due diligence and look at pictures and ask questions so you will know if you will have to purchase any other parts.

What Are The Different Styles of Spinning Wheels

Great Wheels

These are the oldest spinning wheels. To use a great wheel it is best to have two people. One person will draw the fiber and the other will spin the wheel

Saxony Spinning Wheel Castle Spinning Wheel

Saxony Wheels

The Saxony wheel is the most iconic type of spinning wheel. This is the spinning wheel you will see in such fairy tales as Sleeping Beauty and Rumpelstiltskin. The Saxony wheel came about at the beginning of the renaissance. One of the two spinning wheels I own is a Kromski Prelude. These type of spinning wheels make a great center piece as well since it gives that sort of rustic touch.

Castle Wheels

The Castle spinning wheel is when the flyer is located above the wheel. This creates a more compact spinning wheel for those with limited space. I have heard of a few people who really liked thier Ashford Kiwi Spinning Wheel. If you live in a small apartment this might be a good buy since you are dealing with a limited space.

Modern Wheels

The modern spinning wheel can be really of any type. What makes it modern is the materials that are used in the spinning wheel. There are some that are made of pvc, there is a glass one and some are able to be folded up for storage like this Schacht Sidekick Spinning Wheel

Charkha Wheels

The Charkha wheel is a small table top wheel that is operated by hand that is most commonly seen in India. This type of wheel is great for spinning cotton. I found these were the hardest types to get a good sample of. I did a search of Amazon and only found this one. Charka Spinning Wheel By Ashford

Modern Spinning Wheel Charkha Spinning Wheel


Single or Double Treadle

Another consideration to look at is do you want a single treadle spinning wheel or a double treadle spinning wheel? There are a few differences you might want to think about while you are selecting what type of spinning wheel to buy. The single treadle spinning wheel looks more traditional. With only one treadle you have a little more freedom on how you place the spinning wheel. Lastly when one leg becomes tired you can swap to the other leg.

The double treadle spinning wheel will require the use of both feet. Now with two treadles you will have no dead spot in the wheel, think of trying to ride a bike with one foot versus two feet. The wheel will spin more smoothly which can let you have a more consistent spin on the fiber. Lastly, since you are using both legs the strain is split between the two legs.

I should also mention that some spinning wheels can be converted from a single treadle to a double treadle by using a conversion kit. Like this Ashford Double Treadle Conversion Kit

How to Use a Spinning Wheel

Now that you have purchased your spinning wheel you will need to learn how to use it. I have found a great resource in the form of an online class that can be found here