Wool clip

Discussion in 'Sheep' started by tonyaleacht, Jan 9, 2005.

  1. tonyaleacht

    tonyaleacht tonyaleacht

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    Hello, I'm new to the forum but have been reading it for 6 months now. I am a spinner in Omaha, Nebraska and was wondering about your wool clips. For all of you with wool sheep, other than selling it on E-Bay and using it yourselves, what do you do with it? Shearing time is a couple of months away so I figured I'd ask now.
     
  2. Ross

    Ross Moderator Staff Member Supporter

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    I have been selling mine to the Canadian Co-operative Woolgrowers at world market prices. So we're going to switch to processing it and selling it ourselves.
     

  3. tonyaleacht

    tonyaleacht tonyaleacht

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    Thanks. I've noticed the wool market (in U.S.) tending to slide. I'm seeing high prices on people who want to sell, but the people who want to buy are looking at the cheaper stuff. I think 5$ a lb is good for raw, fairly clean fleece. Roving maybe 7-10 $ a lb. I tend to resell it in a more finished form so I try not to pay too much either.
     
  4. Ross

    Ross Moderator Staff Member Supporter

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    If you can find a person with very nice sheep like a Romney or Leicester they'd hopefully expect a bit more as its better wool, but I'd be lucky to get $4 Canadian as a bulk price sold to the co-op so its not hard to improve. Your roving prices sound very cheap, I think it'd be that for 100 grams here! (454 grams per pound if I remember right) What do you do with the rovings?
     
  5. tonyaleacht

    tonyaleacht tonyaleacht

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    Sell it to other spinners on ebay, spin it and sell it to other spinners on ebay
    spin it dye it knit/weave it into something...sell it on ebay( i'm noticing a trend here) I know a lady in the ozarks that sells 1-2 lb fleeces for 50-70$. :eek:
     
  6. John Hill

    John Hill Grand Master

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    Ross, if I recall correctly you have a flock of a few hundred, how do you realistically process to improve that amount on the farm?
     
  7. Ross

    Ross Moderator Staff Member Supporter

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    With the rather large wool picker and carder I have........
     
  8. John Hill

    John Hill Grand Master

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    Ross, are you not scouring the wool?
     
  9. tonyaleacht

    tonyaleacht tonyaleacht

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    if i'm right 100 grams is around 4 oz? is the 7-10$ American or Canadian?
     
  10. Ross

    Ross Moderator Staff Member Supporter

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    John of course the wool has to be scoured but we'll not acid wash it, simply keep the fleece as free of veggie matter as we can and wash it. We've only run some trial batches through as building space is very limited here (and a priority to build!) If you recall the MF 35 I'm fixing up it is to be sold so we can put up a building for the machinery. I'm supposed to be building a duster and set up a wash and dry system, probably in a section of our barn we don't use.


    tonyaleacht I'll get accurate prices hopefully today. My wife has to go pick up a batch of wool for a felting class she's teaching so I'll ask her for prices. I was thinking it would be that in CND.
     
  11. brosil

    brosil Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Actually, I've been mulching my tomatoes with it. Works great and at least I get some good out of it.
     
  12. Ross

    Ross Moderator Staff Member Supporter

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    eBay seems to sell quite a bit of rovings etc. My wife made a pillow out of a batt and it is wonderful! All natural pillows sell for $40-$80 so there's a use for ugly wool!
     
  13. Ross

    Ross Moderator Staff Member Supporter

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    7.10 for Leicester, 5.70 for Corridale roving per 100 grams Canadian dollars. Smells of mothballs though! yuck
     
  14. John Hill

    John Hill Grand Master

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    Thanks Ross, I had always believed that the quantities of water required for cleaning the wool and the greasy waste to be disposed of pretty much precluded on the farm processing of anything more than just a few fleeces.

    If you ever get to travel in Queensland, Australia you may be interested to visit the wool scour at Blackall, there are plenty of web references to it but I have not been able to find a really good photograph to link. The Blackall scour was a sizeable opereration centred around a rather hot artesian bore, they railed and drove in millions of sheep in the early 1900s to be shorn and the wool washed on site. The really interesting thing is that the works operated without modification until about 1970 or so and has been restored somewhat and opened to the public. It really is an interesting example of 1906 technology.

    Because of the nature of machinery of that time it is really easy to see how things work, an obvious advantage to anyone who might be faced with building some smaller(?) equipment to do the same job. One stage of the washing machine reminded me of the 'walkers' that were in some types of threshing and harvesting machinery leading me to think an old combine might have useful bits to build a wool washer. :)
     
  15. Ross

    Ross Moderator Staff Member Supporter

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    We have some old books that show detailed pictues and operating instructions of old wool mill machinery and I've noted a similar machine as you describe. There is also a company in Canada making smaller wool processing machinery (drawframes spinning frames etc.) which are interesting if pricey. Still the new tractor I'm looking at costs a touch over 40k and the baler 25k....... I'm not likely buying either this year, but the wool equip I'd need to buy wouldn't run me much over 50k. So as long as it gets used it would be hard not to make money the price raw wool is! We'll start with what we have, and see if it warrents adding to. I'm not worried about the water requirements, Canada has something like 3/5's of the world's fresh water, blah blah blah, what you really need is a waste disposal ability and I have that with my land base.
     
  16. tonyaleacht

    tonyaleacht tonyaleacht

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    I know who your talking about. I just talked to him mon or tues and yes he is pricey. We have mcdermott mill equipment here in the US that is 25% cheaper and doesn't charge for shipping. I'm gonna go with him.
     
  17. Ross

    Ross Moderator Staff Member Supporter

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    I wish McDermott made all the equipment Mini Mills does (wasn't not saying their name on purpose) I think his carder has a higher capacity. We have Patrick Greene's cottage industry equip, which is smaller than the McDermott machine too but does a wonderful job and was available used for much less than new. I don't think either Minimills or McDermott are over priced but you'd want to know you liked the work before you spent that kind of money!! The one good (?) point the fellow at minimills said was he couldn't be sure other peoples equipment would be compatible with his stuff. Fair thing to say but if all rovings need to go through the drawframe to make the roving consistant for his spinning frames then what does it matter which carder it comes off of? Where abouts are you?
     
  18. Ross

    Ross Moderator Staff Member Supporter

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  19. tonyaleacht

    tonyaleacht tonyaleacht

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    I'm in Nebraska USA. McD's is now making whole mill equipment including draw frames, spinners, and winders. There working out of Stonehenge fiber mill now and the father has taken the business back.
     
  20. Ross

    Ross Moderator Staff Member Supporter

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    WOW!! Now that's going to be worth a call to get more info!! Do they have a new web addy? Certainly the last time I called (I suppose I was talking to the son) it was a very pleasant conversation, I wonder what happened as he sounded very enthusiastic about new machinery.