Spinning is generally performed, either by means of a wheel, or sometimes with a distaff and spindle: but, as the wheels commonly employed for this purpose, are aukward and inconvenient, Mr. Antis, of Fulneck, near Leeds, in 1793, submitted to the inspection of the Society for the Encouragement of Arts, etc. a model of an improved spinning-wheel; for which they conferred on him a bounty of 20 guineas. - We have, therefore, procured an engraving of this useful domestic machine, for the benefit of our country readers.
The usual method of stopping the wheel, with a view to remove the- yarn from one staple on the flyer to another, necessarily occasions great loss of time; but, in Mr. A.'s contrivance, the bobbin \s so arranged, as to ward and forward, in order to prevent any interruption ; and at the same time to obviate both the breaking of the thread, and losing the end : hence, the spinner is enabled to perform more work, in a given time, than is practicable by any other spinning-wheel. Such object ted, by extending the axis of the great wheel through the pillar next the person spinning ; and forming it into a pinion of one leaf, A ; which catches into a wheel, ft, seven inches in diameter, having on its periphery 97 teeth ; so 97 revolutions of the great v. require only one of the wheel. On the latter, a wire-ring, ' c, c, c, is fixed; which, being sup-ported on six legs, stands obliquely to the wheel itself; touching it at one part, and projecting nearly three-quarters of an inch at the opposite edge. Near the side of this wheel, is an upright lever, C, about 15 inches in length, moving on a centre, three inches from its lower extremity, and connected at the top with a sliding bar, D. Front such bar rises an upright piece of
I, E; which works in the notch of a pulley, and drives the bobbin F, to and fro, accordingly as the oblique wire forces the pin G, in or out, during the revolution of wheel. In order to regulate and assist the alternate motion, a weight, H, is suspended by aline from the slid-ing-bar; and, passing over a pulley I, it rises or falls, as the bobbin advances or recedes ; tending constantly to keep the pin in with the wire. In consequence of this construction, the flyer requires only one staple ; which, being fixed near the extremity K, the thread entering through, is regularly laid on the bobbin, by the rotary motion of the later
Since Mr. Antis presented the model of the machine here described, he has made several alterations, which greatly contribute to its perfection; and for which the Society, in 1795, rewarded him with the additional sum of 15 guineas. As we conceive, that an account of these improvements will be inte-resting to every industrious house-wife, we shall concisely state them, together with Mr. A.'s remarks. 1. At every revolution of the wheel, in his former machine, the on with one leaf occasioned a disagreeable catch, while the bobbin moved only by jerks, and did not receive the thread in an uniform manner. With a view to remedy this inconvenience, Mr. Antis has adopted the motion of an endless screw, working a toothed wheel, on which is fixed a heart-shaped piece of brass.
Description of the Plate represent-MR. Anti's Improved Spinning-Wheel.
2. As the spinner should always be enabled to hold the thread at pleasure, and not let it in, till it be sufficiently twisted, Mr. A. observed that, the bobbing moving on a square, its motion was so impeded, that when it began to be filled with thread, it became immoveable, notwithstanding the action of the weight ; and, when the thread was afterwards left at liberty, it started at once half an inch and upwards.
3. As, in the wheels of the common construction, and also in those of Mr. Antis's first improvement, the friction of the bobbin could be augmented only by stretching the common cord, which was not practicable, without making the wheel revolve with increasing difficulty, particularly when the bobbin was nearly filled; he was induced to make use of a single cord, the sole design of which is to turn the flyer; and, in case it should become slack, it may be contracted or shortened, without requiring any screw.
Farther, to regulate the friction of the bobbin, Mr. A. has fastened a neck of steel or brass to one end, which is kept steady by a vice, or by pincers, fixed to the sliding-bar (D. in the plate above described). Such vice is-directed to be made either of two elastic springs, furnished with wooden tops; or wholly of wood boshed with leather, and provided with a spring, under the shoulder of the screw, to answer the same purpose. By tightening this screw to a greater or less degree, the friction may be most accurately regulated, without impeding the velocity of the whole; as no additional machinery obstructs the general motion. Mr. Antis, therefore, concludes that a wheel, on this improved plan, will be. found to run more freely than those with a double cord; a circumstance of the greatest importance, to a person whose daily livelihood is obtained by spinning : nay, even a lady who sometimes spins for her diversion, was much pleased with his first invention, and thought it might save a person at least two hours in a day. He observes, that his contrivance may be added to old spinning wheels of every construction ; and that it would not considerably increase the price of a new machine, made according to his plan.
Such are the advantages derived from Mr. A.'s mechanical ingenuity, which have, from experience, been ascertained in Yorkshire : it is therefore to be hoped, that so useful a domestic implement will speedily be introduced into other -counties of Britain.