Brain Suck

It’s brain suck day here at the farm.

Zombies?

Vampires? (although technically I guess vampires would be blood suckers not brain suckers)

Neither.

Today is the day we package up the fiber to send to the mill for processing. I’ve had several people ask how I go about shipping raw fiber. Raw fiber is fluffy and well, voluminous, which is one of the most tricky things about shipping. All that fluffy softness is part of what we knitters like about good fiber, but shrinking it before sending it to send it to the mill is helpful and less expensive.

My llama lady, Lisa, shared the secret of brain suck. Lisa is a veteran at shipping fiber and can manage brain suck solo. I’m not there yet, so I get Chris to help me. It’s a comical sight as you’ll see from the photos.

When the fiber is clean and ready to be mailed it’s put in plastic bags. I’m a goof ball planner type and usually have the fiber type written on labels that will be quickly slapped on the bags for identification.
Fiber shipping day

We insert a shop-vac with a thin cloth napkin covering the nozzle into the bag full of fiber. While I hold the bag tight around the nozzle Chris flips the switch on the vacuum. A quick withdrawal is key to allowing as little air back into the bag as possible. I yank the rubber band from my wrist and try to secure the back quickly. Then I plop it onto the scales and weigh it before tossing it into the shipping box. See? It looks like brain.

Fiber shipping day
Fiber shipping day

We try to work fast and fill one box at a time then tape the box shut before moving to the next box. If you dilly dally the air seeps into the bags and they begin to expand and you’ll never get the box taped shut. You’re likely to have ten boxes to ship instead of three.
Fiber shipping day

Once I get all the air sucked out of the fiber and the boxes taped shut I calculate the fiber weight per batch and create a packing list to tape on the outside of the first box. I’ve tried to include the packing list inside the boxes but you do not – do not – want to reopen one of these boxes and think you’re going to easily close it back up again. There is a poof and a whishing sound whenever the tape is cut on the box to open it. It’s like something is alive in there and just waiting to escape.

……..
Zombies?Vampires? (although technically I guess vampires would be blood suckers not brain suckers)Neither. Today is the day we package up the fiber to send to the mill for processing. I’ve had several people ask how I go about shipping raw fiber. Raw fiber is fluffy and well, voluminous, which is one of the most tricky things about shipping. All that fluffy softness is part of what we knitters like about good fiber, but shrinking it before sending it to send it to the mill is helpful and less expensive.My llama lady, Lisa, shared the secret of brain suck. Lisa is a veteran at shipping fiber and can manage brain suck solo. I’m not there yet, so I get Chris to help me. It’s a comical sight as you’ll see from the photos. When the fiber is clean and ready to be mailed it’s put in plastic bags. I’m a goof ball planner type and usually have the fiber type written on labels that will be quickly slapped on the bags for identification. We insert a shop-vac with a thin cloth napkin covering the nozzle into the bag full of fiber. While I hold the bag tight around the nozzle Chris flips the switch on the vacuum. A quick withdrawal is key to allowing as little air back into the bag as possible. I yank the rubber band from my wrist and try to secure the back quickly. Then I plop it onto the scales and weigh it before tossing it into the shipping box. See? It looks like brain. We try to work fast and fill one box at a time then tape the box shut before moving to the next box. If you dilly dally the air seeps into the bags and they begin to expand and you’ll never get the box taped shut. You’re likely to have ten boxes to ship instead of three. Once I get all the air sucked out of the fiber and the boxes taped shut I calculate the fiber weight per batch and create a packing list to tape on the outside of the first box. I’ve tried to include the packing list inside the boxes but you do not – do not – want to reopen one of these boxes and think you’re going to easily close it back up again. There is a poof and a whishing sound whenever the tape is cut on the box to open it. It’s like something is alive in there and just waiting to escape. var gaJsHost = ((“https:” == document.location.protocol) ? “https://ssl.” : “http://www.”);document.write(unescape(“%3Cscript src='” + gaJsHost + “google-analytics.com/ga.js’ type=’text/javascript’%3E%3C/script%3E”)); var pageTracker = _gat._getTracker(“UA-xxxxxx-x”);pageTracker._trackPageview();
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