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Routine Maintenance.


  • Once a month remove the tension block to rotate - inspect/replace the felt.

  • Dust the wheel with furniture polish when necessary.

  • Change your drive band when necessary.

  • Remove drive band residue with a rag and furniture polish when necessary.

  • Move drive band to smallest ratio when not spinning.

  • Remove drive band from wheel when stored for prolonged period.

  • Check magnet on flyer shaft. If loose, apply superglue to secure.

Tension Tips

  • To set: Start by twisting the knob until there is no pressure on the spring resting on it, so that any more clockwise twisting of the knob would cause the spring to start to compress.

  • Hold the leader straight from the orifice hook toward you, not at an angle. Always go along all the pegs from the first one you come to, to the front of the flyer arm.

  • Hold the yarn you are making in a line from the center of the orifice hook to you. You may find you need to increase tension slightly – only a quarter turn at a time – as the bobbin approaches full.

  • The fuller the bobbin is, the more it can overcome the braking pressure. This is true of any Scotch tension based flyer system.

  • On large bobbins, the weight of yarn on the bobbin will make treadling under high tension difficult. Remove some tension and allow the weight of the yarn to function as momentum based tension while you finish filling the bobbin.

  • To spin ultrafine or short staple fibers, try completely removing the tension block.

Treadling Tips

  • Place your feet on the treadles and, with even pressure from each foot, gently press down one foot at a time to turn the drive wheel which (if connected by your drive band) will turn the flyer and twist your fiber into yarn.

  • We recommend trying different chairs to find the most comfortable height for your body.

  • Depress one treadle fully, and then the other.

  • Your heels rest on the floor / heel rests in front of the treadles, only your toes need to go up and down.

  • If you try to push down a treadle with one foot before the other treadle has gone completely down, you will find the treadle difficult to push. With a little practice, you will soon find where each side is completely depressed and adapt your rhythm to the upswing of the other treadle.

Ratio Tips

  • If you are just getting started spinning, we recommend starting on the slowest ratio and working up to faster ratios from there.

  • We recommend moving the drive band to the highest (smallest) ratio at the end of each spinning session, so that the band can “recover” from being stretched. This maintains its elasticity so it will be ready for you, when you are ready for spinning at the higher ratios.

Spinning Tips

  • When spinning clockwise, it's best to start on the right-side pegs; counter-clockwise, start on the left-side pegs. That way the yarn will stay against the pegs as you spin.

  • You will need to stop and change pegs from time to time so that the little hills of yarn that build up don't collapse into messes on the bobbin.

  • For even weight distribution, fill from the front to the back, and toward the front again.

  • The last peg before the orifice hook is important: it prevents the yarn from rubbing against the edge of the bobbin: be sure to be outside the final peg.

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Yarn is not taking up on the bobbin

  • Increase the tension by ¼  turns clockwise until yarn takes up.

  • Make sure the bobbin is locked into the magnet at the back of the flyer.

  • Make sure the orifice bar is locked to the magnets on the flyer bars.

  • As the bobbin fills, you will find draw-in decreases – this is standard behavior in scotch tension wheels; increase the brake tension and continue filling your bobbin.

  • Check if your yarn has jumped off the pegs, it could wrap around the flyer spindle between the bobbin and orifice arm. Remove the orifice arm, unwrap this yarn, and then restart spinning.

  • Check if your fiber is wrapped around the hook or pegs.

Drive Wheel is Rubbing / Wobbling

  • If your drive wheel has a slight wobble, you may not need to balance it. A small amount of wobble is fine. You only need to balance the wheel if the wobble causes the drive wheel to rub against the back of the wheel, or if it causes your drive band to pop off during use.

  • You will need a phillips head screwdriver.

  • Behind the drive wheel in the back of the hub there are three screws. You will need to loosen the screws to rebalance the wheel.

  • Line the screwdriver up with each screw behind the hub. You will need to put the screwdriver between the holes in the drive wheel to reach the screws behind the hub.

  • Using your thumb as a gauge, you can straighten the wheel to align it so that it spins straight.

  • Spin the drive wheel, and press on it, using your thumb as a gauge, until it runs true.

  • Tighten the three screws (they are set into steel so you can tighten them firmly) to secure the drive wheel into a “true” balanced position.

  • Place the screwdriver thru the holes in the Monarch / Echo

All drive wheels are balanced in quality control before being test driven. However, during shipping the drive wheel may become unbalanced. It is common for a drive wheel to arrive unbalanced after shipping. This does not mean your wheel is warped. It just needs one easy adjustment.

Take up is too strong

  • Decrease the tension by small increments. Minor adjustments can have a large effect.

  • For very fine spinning, start with a half full bobbin and/or lace the yarn across the flyer arms to decrease the drag-in of the yarn. A half-full bobbin is the same as one lacing across the flyer arm, and 2-3 lacings will reduce the draw in enough for very fine spinning.

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Yarn is thumping as you spin

  • Be sure your yarn is coming from the center of the orifice hook toward your body in a fairly straight horizontal line. A slight angle is possible, but don’t put the yarn at a 45 degree angle up, down, or sideways from the center of the orifice hook.

  • Switch to an tube orifice bar if your spinning style is naturally to one side.

Drive band is popping off

  • Make sure you are on a functional ratio. You may have your band on a whorl combination that is not designed to be used. Use the Ratio Map to make sure your bands are correctly placed.

  • FIREFLY: You do not need to use different whorls on the Firefly since it is electric and the speed is variable based on the motor. We recommend using the middle Golden Whorl on all Firefly head sizes. If your band pops off, it may be stretched, just move it to a larger groove.

    • If your band continues to pop off, it is possible the motor of your Firefly got dislodged in shipping. Please contact your dealer to troubleshoot.

  • Increase speed slowly, over 5-10 treadlings, from nothing to the speed you want to spin, to minimize or avoid drive band slippage. Going from zero to top speed on the very first down stroke will almost always make the drive band slip.

  • The band may slip more in the highest ratio position if you often use it at the low ratio settings. Store your drive band in the highest ratio groove or even on the rod behind the grooves between spinning sessions to help it regain its high ratio size.

  • If you have overstretched the drive band, you may find it will recover elasticity by removing it for a few days. New drive bands can be purchased on our website.

  • It is possible that your drive wheel needs to be balanced. Instructions to balance the drive wheel are in our Big User Guide.

Squealing / Chirping Noise


  • This will happen during the lifetime of your wheel and is considered routine maintenance. It means the Tension block needs to be rotated or fresh felt to absorb friction and silence the noise of it pressing on the flyer.

  • To rotate: spin the block around 180 degrees and insert it back into the head.

  • To change the felt: Scrape the felt off. Apply rubber cement to the block and apply fresh felt to the cement. Wait to dry completely and then place back in the head secured by properly aligned tension hardware.

Bobbin is Rattling

  • Make sure the flyer rod still has the magnet attached. If the magnet is missing, it may be stuck in the back of one of your bobbins. Remove the magnet and secure it to the back of your flyer rod with a drop of super glue. If you lose your magnet, you can purchase a replacement at www.spinolution.com/parts

  • Make sure the bobbin is secured to the magnet on the flyer rod. A loose bobbin will rattle.

  • Make sure the orifice bar is secured to the flyer arms. A loose orifice bar will also cause a rattle.

  • Make sure you are filling up your bobbin evenly. If you only fill the front or back of your bobbin it can cause a temporary rattle noise on the flyer rod until it becomes balanced with more yarn.

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Tension is Erratic

  • Remove the tension block, inspect the felt for wear, replace the felt if worn or smooth.

  • Rotate the tension block 180 degrees.

  • Sand the sides of the tension block if it is not sliding smoothly into the head.

  • Make sure your bobbin is secured to the magnet at the back of the flyer rod.

  • Make sure your orifice bar is secured to the magnets on the flyer arms.

  • Make sure your yarn / fiber is not wrapped around the hook or caught on a peg.

  • Try drafting yarn closer to the orifice instead of spinning a long length of yarn and letting it wind onto the bobbin all at once. Twisting long lengths of fiber and then pushing the yardage onto the bobbin can wrap around the hook and cause tension issues.

  • Make sure you are spinning in front of the orifice, and not at an angle.

Treadling is Difficult

  • Reduce the tension.

  • Check if something has gotten under the treadles, jamming them.

  • Check if something is pressing against the drive wheel.

  • Check if the drive band is out of the grooves on the flyer.

  • Sit closer to the wheel or try a higher / lower chair (especially if you’re on a Hopper)

  • Check that the drive band is in one of the grooves on the back of the flyer, and not on the metal rod behind them.

  • On accelerated wheels like the Bee, Pollywog, and 4A Flyer - the smallest ratio requires the most effort.

  • if you are on the highest ratio, try switching to the lowest ratio for a few minutes to stretch the band just a bit, and then returning to the highest ratio

  • If you are trying to start fast, start with a slower first few treadles, increasing speed gradually over the first few treadlings.

  • If you are on the highest ratio, use silicone-based lubricant on the shaft & bearings behind the flyer to loosen the bearings. Treadle without spinning to allow the lubricant to cover the bearings (non-golden whorl models only)

Knocking when treadling

  • The knocking is due to the oval treadle hub opening up and hitting the bearings instead of staying closed around the bearings. It is most commonly caused by the spinner having an uneven treadling cadence (pressing harder on one treadle than the other) causing the oval treadle to open and knock against the bearings.

  • Fix: Put a rubber band around the outside of the treadle to keep it from opening or add several layers of painters tape to the inside of the treadle (hidden), and gently close the treadle over the layers of tape to secure.

Black Residue from Drive Band

  • It is normal for black residue to wear off the band. Use a damp cloth to wipe this residue from your wheel and off the band.

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