Traditional Tibetan spindles are very plain, just a stick with a stone or even a hex nut used as the center weight and spun in a bowl. For Americans with deep pockets and access to the world’s rare woods, the Tibetan spindles have morphed into collector’s items. Unconstrainted by the weight restriction imposed by gravity, these supported spindles can be heavier, bigger and have more surface to show case the beautiful wood.
Short and downy fibers such as yak, cashmere, camel and even silk can be finely spun on supported spindles using the long-draw. Check out these YouTube videos on how spinning is done on a Tibetan by a Tibetan woman and Fleegle.