Project Sparrowhawk began as an effort to extend the fine gauge spinning ability of Sparrow, by increasing the speed and making sure take up could still be light at those high speeds. What it evolved into was a deep academic exercise into the applied physics that comes into play at these “production level” speeds. And the wheel itself evolved into a life of its own, with a gentle nature at lower speeds but yet capable of 4200 rpm non-stop without motor or tension system heat problems. It was decided that a new name be given to this wonderful advancement in performance and technology, one befitting its friendly or fierce nature.
I introduce to you,
400-4200rpm capable with the lowest noise in the industry.
2oz capacity bobbin with robust 30mm core, optimized for fine spinning
Weight with bobbin is 2.5lbs (1140g)
Dimensions: 8.5”L, 7”W, 8.5”H (21.6 x 17.8 x 21.6cm)
Designed around the absolute finest materials and components available such as:
Enormous motor (it’s over half the total weight of the machine!)
T6061 aluminum brake drums (never overheat, cannot be abused)
Active air cooling onto the brake drums (the faster, the better)
Pure Kevlar braided tension belt (will stop bullets, do not attempt)
Hardened tool steel chrome plated fat 8mm linear rods for axles
Ceramic maiden bearing (less heat, higher speeds, harder than steel)
Carbon Fiber “Twin Spar” chassis (a Daedalus signature design)
3D printed ABS components (strong yet lightweight, inherently balanced)
Vibration dampening system (a Daedalus signature design)
Digital Speed Control, Soft Start/Stop separately programmable (no backlash)
BulletProofed design through rigorous bench testing and development.
Flyer “bars” are circular with blade spokes (doesn’t waste energy moving air)
“Double bladed” upper and lower bars (a Daedalus signature design)
Bobbin has a flat rear disc to be minimal to the oncoming air
Motor cooling pinion impeller (jet-like nose cone and stack, full motor shroud)
Aerodynamic Coupling between the flyer and the bobbin
Turbine impeller blades keep the bobbin faster relative to the flyer
Absolutely essential to keep take up low as speeds top out
Without, take-up would increase beyond usable levels at high speed
Helps the bobbin sync better to the flyer during shutdown (avoid backlash)
Actual development before it was offered for sale
4200 rpm is worthless if it acts like a mad cat
Extensive high-speed testing: James Perry, Abby Franquemont, and others
Endless iterations of bobbin and bearing designs were performance tested
Aero Coupling tuning (like sizing a turbo for a race car engine)
Tortured without mercy (full speed at ridiculous tension heat tests, didn’t blink)
Falcon has utterly amazed me at every turn during its development. I was worried about vibration, noise, usability at high speed, usability at low speed, motor heat, tension system heat, angular momentum (“energies”), risk of injury, etc. Literally, every category tested well beyond my far reaching goals for them. No vibrations, no sounds of impending doom, no clackety-clack or tick tock tick, no motor growl or whine. It’s quieter than my other wheels at their max speeds, and maxing it out produces just some wind noise like a small desk fan. It has been thoroughly tested in the upper range of speeds for finesse and politeness, as well as walking along at slow beginner speeds without chugging or struggling. Heat tests were as cold as could be expected, with motor and drum temps never exceeding “pocket change” levels around 100F (38C) or 25F (14C) over ambient. This was at torture levels of speed and tension, which is why I’m perfectly comfortable saying it’s “BulletProof” at any speed for any job. Which is just leaving the inevitable “Dave, stick your hand in it” test. My biggest fear is that I was making a machine that would possibly injure someone, somehow, someday; so I answer my own question directly with this crude test. The shortest answer I can give is it’s no worry - the small flyer mass (albeit at higher speeds) helps keep angular momentum well below thresholds that would be any danger. An interesting tidbit for nerds, the higher rotational speed causes the flyer arms to pass by more frequently, so an approaching object can’t engage the coincidence area as deeply as a lower rpm would. In normal parlance, it doesn’t bite as deeply. The test experience was not like being struck; with my eyes closed, my brain just said I was touching something vibrating but no danger signaling. Although I would still recommend standard precautions with any spinning electric device, such as a stable and uncluttered work area (no loose fiber), keep long hair tied back, no long sleeves or scarves, etc.
Is Falcon for you? Well, do you spin on my other wheels at full speed and describe the experience as “waiting for twist to accumulate?” Are you okay with a wheel with 2oz bobbins that have been specialized for high speed and light take-up, which is used for fine lace spinning? Do you secretly crave buckets of speed with no pomp or circumstance? Any Yes answers here says you could use Falcon’s potential. I envision production cotton and silk spinners being able to reduce their labor time by a large factor.
We are currently getting Falcon into our print queue and hope to see them for sale in the next coming weeks. Price is still to be determined but will be close to Starling V3 pricing. Because we want to make sure these first units go out to people who can really benefit from the increase in speed that Falcon offers over other wheels, we will be taking requests via this google form using your email address for contact. With these few questions, we will be able to ensure that this type of specialized wheel will be a good fit for your expectations, and you will be satisfied with your choice.
I wish I could thank everyone who has helped out on this project by name, but then this would be twice the wall of text it already is. Thank all of you, who have helped bring Falcon up to such a high standard of design and function.