My ‘New’ Old Loom

My Leclerc 4-harness counterbalanced foot loom.

My Leclerc 4-harness counterbalanced foot loom.


Front beam - tension clamp?

Front beam - tension clamp?

My new old loom was gifted to me by Joan, owner of Heritage Spinning & Weaving, Lake Orion, MI. I’ve been musing with my loom for almost 2 years, where she’s been laying, sadly, in pieces in my drying barn…unused and unappreciated! YIKES! I’m told she once resided at Castle Farms, Charlevoix, MI. After some detective work, we believe it is a Leclerc MIRA as far as we can tell?
We didn’t install the harnesses since we don’t have the tie-up cord(s). I’m told I may be able to use good old fashioned clothesline from the local hardware store?
Earlier this summer, I played host to a group of Heritage fiber artists at a drum carding play day. The ladies couldn’t help but notice my loom – collecting dust – in the barn and offered to help organize a ‘loom building party’ to put her back together. Well, thanks to Stacey, these days my loom is beginning to appear more like a loom; we were missing parts (lever & mechanism for back beam tension brake) and apparently have extra parts. Judging from the condition of the heddles, and perhaps other parts require replacement. I’ll need to make a wish list for sure. I’m hoping to get her functional and ‘singing’ soon!!?? I’d love to weave rugs and blankets with my very own sheepies wool. 
Front beam tension brake...?

Front beam tension brake...?

I think we’re missing the brake/tension mechanism on the back beam, same side.

These are the ‘extra’ parts. Could it be a trapeze?

Extra parts?

Extra parts?

I forgot to mension my loom is a big girl, approx 68″ wide. I was sooooo hoping she would fit into my family room, which she does, but only if I never want to open the french door to the back porch again! lol  Now I’m re-thinking that I’ll give her a place of honor in my STUDIO…that is, reduce the footprint/floor space dedicated to my farm shop, basically downsize, since I’m rethinking the biz, to only offer farm-raised, hand-made items. Well, maybe the occasional few novelty prim/folky sheepies.  
Still a ways from being functional, but I’m getting there with the help of fellow fiber friends. Pls stay tuned for progress…
Happy day!

7 thoughts on “My ‘New’ Old Loom

  1. I too am a weaver. I was given a 2-harness union floor loom and it layed in a shed until 10 years ago when we moved here in SE Ohio and I set it up, replaced parts and started weaving rugs. For Christmas last year my DH bought me a 4-harness Harrisville Design studio loom and I have woven a few things on it. I want to do towels but I need to buy more heddles which were not there when we got it. Tari

    • Hi Tari!
      Thanks for visiting! I’m so excited about weaving, it seems that there’s always stuff getting in the way between me and my loom! lol There’s a fiber shop, Heritage Spinning & Weaving in Lake Orion, MI that us fiber addicts visit frequently! I’ve taken several weaving classes, but my desire is to make rugs, using my roving and incorporating locks from my spinning buddy’s Border Leicester and Lincoln sheep. Every time I see one of these rugs (like during this past weekend’s Mt Bruce fiber festival), I just drool! I’d love to weave blankets too. I’m getting there…thanks for the encouragement. Jenny

  2. When I bought my loom from a friend who was downsizing 2 years ago, part of the deal was that she would help me dress it the first time. Ahh, such is life, she hasn’t had time.
    I dust it and have been really trying to become familiar with her parts, but I’m so intimidated by the amount of yardage of warp and weft that I’m SCARED to start! I need help with the basics. I am working with a 4 harness herald floor loom, with a no. 12 dent reed at this time. It also came with other reeds. I would love to make some scarves for Christmas presents. Does anyone have advice that doesn’t involve spending $$ on videos, etc. ?

  3. Jodie,

    Do you have a local yarn/fiber shop in your neighborhood that could help? My go-to shop is Heritage Spinning and Weaving in Lake Orion, MI. How about checking any local spinning/weaving guilds in your area? There’s many good books on weaving…perhaps a video from your local library? Great resources at
    Another good book is “Learning to Weave” by Deborah Chandler. I hope this helps!

  4. Jodie, I’m in the mind frame that nothing ventured nothing gained. I went to our local library and looked up everything on weaving. Debbie Chandler has a good beginning book and there are videos you can check out too. Warping takes the longest, but once warped weaving goes fairly fast. If you want a 7 inch scarf and have a 10 dent reed, that’s 70 warp ends. I warp from the front to the back. Center your warp in the reed and starting at the right or left thread the warp through the heddles. Push the heddles to the opposite side and pull the first heddle on the first frame over and thread the first thread through it. Pull the second heddle over and thread the second thread through it. and third and forth like this. The fifth tread will go through the first heddle. the sixth, the second and so on. This will be a tabby weave lifting 1and3, and then 2and4. I hope this helps. I know it can be intimidating but take one step and then another and before you know it you’ll be weaving. Tari

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s