A few readers may remember my HitchHiker spinning wheel, that I imported to the UK several years ago, and hand painted....
Well the time has come to sell this wheel. I still love it and if we had all the space and money in the world, I would keep it. But we don't. And I have only spun 100g of fibre on her since I was pregnant with Aran, and he was 7 in March - this wheel really needs to belong to someone who will use her and love her, not keep her stored away in a bag! Last year I was lucky enough to get myself a Louet Hatbox wheel (which I took all the photos for but failed to blog about) and I've done more spinning on that than the Hitch - someone who spins as little as I do these days can't justify two wheels.
So yesterday we dusted her down, gave her a mini service and took lots and lots of photos. I've really no idea what to ask for her, as these don't come up 2nd hand very often, especially in the UK and Europe, and especially one with so much decoration. Shipping these over from the US isn't cheap and the import duty adds a hefty sum, and that's all been taken care of - this wheel was the first HitchHiker to come to the UK! After a lot of thought, I'd like to ask £250 plus shipping, and will list the wheel on eBay later today. I'd be more than happy to see her go to someone I know, so if you're interested send me a message!
Over the years I've had a lot of questions about the wheel, and Dave at Merlin Tree has developed quite a following, and there's a tonne of information now online. If you Google for the HitchHiker wheel there are many videos, demonstrating how the wheel works and it's own special charm, and there's an active group on Ravelry, too. Dave is incredibly helpful and hand makes all of these wheels!
I've always said that spinning on a hitchHiker is akin to driving a vintage car - it has character. It isn't as smooth as my Louet straight out of the box, but given a short learning curve you'll soon learn her quirks and what she needs to spin well. The wheel is quite capable of spinning all sorts, you'll just need to know what adjustments to make (hence the link to the forum and using YouTube)
I took rather a lot of photos yesterday, so here goes....
The standard flyer on the new wheels is slightly different to this one - this flyer is (I believe) from an Ashford, and there are 4 standard bobbins to go with it.
The only real damage to the paintwork is on the back of the wheel, where the whorl runs. This is to be expected really - the wood was primed and painted in acrylic and then varnished, but wear will show eventually. It's very easy to touch up - the background to the paintwork isn't a flat colour, and the writing is simply done with a permanent silver marker!
The writing on the front of the wheel spirals, and is a description of the spinning process.
Anyone remember all the handspun yarns I used to sell? Well they were all spun on this wheel, and on this flyer. At the time there wasn't a jumbo flyer to go with the Hitch, so I made do. Since then, Dave developed a jumbo flyer, for which I was a tester, and that jumbo flyer with two jumbo bobbins is also included.
And there you have it! She's a beauty, isn't she? And rare. I'm open to offers but I can't afford to let her go too cheaply. If she doesn't sell for the right price I'd sooner hold onto her until we can find her the right home.
I'm still looking into courier options and shipping charges, and I don't see why shipping to mainland Europe would be a problem. I will also look into worldwide shipping, and if anyone interested uses a regular courier, I'm open to suggestions.
Once the eBay link is live, I'll link here. In the meantime, if you can help spread the word it'd be muchly appreciated!
(I'm feeling a little sad and nostalgic as I press the 'publish' button on this post... whoever owns her next, please look after her? Ta :)
eta/ I've found the original blog posts about the painting of my HitchHiker!
(for the 'Spinning' tag below for more posts featuring this wheel and the yarns it created)
eta2/ the wheel is now listed on eBay!
eta3/ the wheel has sold already! Wow! Thanks again for your support :)