Introduction: Laser-Cut Plywood Table-Loom
You want to weave a big crazy blanket like I do, but you don't have a loom!? Well get out the laser cutter and make yourself one! Download the illustrator file and follow the detailed assembly instructions, then follow the simple set-up and weaving instructions, then get cuddly! It's gonna be great.
Step 1: Pick Up the Pieces
You cut out your pieces... now dry fit them together to make the form of the box. Use the two side pieces and the three cross-bar pieces... make sure everything is good and the bottom is flat (It's turned over in the picture)
Step 2: GLUE LIKE MAD!!
Well first just glue the three cross-beams to the side to make the box stable and permanent. I like a gentle touch as you see.
Step 3: Glue That Cool Hex Back Roller Beam!
Get those hexagons on there, they are going to be a sort of "gear" for you to adjust your loom's tension. Don't glue the second beam piece into those slots though, it's meant to slide in and out.
Step 4: Complete the Front and Back Beam, Slide Them in and You Are Good to Go!
WITHOUT GLUE slip the locking pieces into the completed back beam and the front beam, slide them into place as seen in the photos! Wait, you should've let all the glue dry first. Do that, then this. THEN...
Step 5: SET UP YOUR NEW LITTLE LOOM!
Measure out the forty strains of yarn that you will weave, and get them through those slots and holes in the heddle piece (That rad grill piece). Previous experience with my backstrap laser loom is helpful.
Drape the strands across the front beam, WITHOUT the locking, tabbed piece.
Step 6: Twist-on, No Knots!
Drop that locking piece on top, sandwiching the threads between it and the front beam. Slip those tabs in and twist the threads so they wrap around the beam unit securely, then slip the beam back into its slot in the loom.
Pull the threads taut.
Step 7: Detangle, Detangle...
figure out how to secure your loom in place, you can have a friend hold it or sit on it, use your feet, etc... so you can pull those threads tight and work the heddle piece to the other end of the yarn.
Step 8: Clamp and Roll
Get your back beam with its locking piece, and repeat the clamping operation you performed at the front, this time in the air, while holding all the strands at near-equal tension (stretchier yarns like wool or acrylic are more forgiving for this reason... but don't use acrylic please). Then start to roll the whole shebang onto your back beam, working your way to the loom.
Step 9: Roll on and Lock
Once you roll your threads onto the beam, lock the hex-gear into its receptacle there, holding the threads tight inside that little box. Not too tight, just right.
Step 10: Weave Now
Put some yarn on your shuttle (I hope there was one in that .ai, I found it on an ancient jump drive and no longer have illustrator to open the file, ha!) Anyhow the weaving operation is simple: Pull the heddle up and pass the shuttle with its yarn through the opening you've made. Pull back the heddle to pack the wool in place. Then push down on the heddle and see the opening created thus. Send your shuttle back and pull the heddle back again. Repeat until the shuttle no longer fits through the space, then advance.
Advancing is simplest if you unlock the back beam from its hex spot, then pul out the front beam and wind on the cloth you've made. Lock the front back in place and then use the finer adjustment of the back beam to get the correct tension. Then keep weaving until forever! But remember to stop for drinks and snacks.
THANKS FOR YOUR INTEREST I LOVE YOU BECAUSE YOU WANT TO WEAVE.