I have fallen in love with the look of the Kromski Polonaise and was planning on buying one soon but was recently told (second hand) that it was not a good wheel to buy. No details about "why not" were available and I haven't found any negative reviews on the internet, at least to date. Am I missing something important? I have a Schacht Ladybug that I bought several years ago when I learned to spin and it's a very nice wheel but I'd really prefer a more traditional looking wheel. That said, Kromski wheels are in my price range while nearly all of the other Saxony wheels out there are far and away out of my price range. I'm not planning to sell my Ladybug - it's very portable and that's handy. I just really really love the look of the Polonaise...
Thanks for sharing your collective wisdom!
HI - I bought one last year. I love it. It is not only beautiful, but a workhorse. I have the clear finish and I put it together alone. I think it's fabulous, and I have almost 30 years of spinning experience.
I bought an unfinished Kromski Polonaise a few years ago & absolutely love it! I finished it with Danish oil. It's a larger wheel, which is tricky to take to spinning get-togethers, so I bought the smallest Kromski Mazurka (which is no longer being made) as my wheel to take to spinning events. Both wheels are absolutely gorgeous with lots of attention to detail. Pretty much all of the Kromski spinning wheels are double drive with a built-in Scotch tension option. The bobbins are larger than the traditional Ashford bobbins so they hold more yarn, and even the lazy Kates are beautiful!
Go for it!!
I also fell in love with the traditional "look" of the Kromski Polonaise and purchased the clear finish wheel a year and a half ago (before I knew how to spin). It is beautiful and well made with excellent craftsmanship.
I was torn between wanting to make "art/bulky" yarn and considering the Majacraft Aura or making traditional yarns and going with the Kromski. I am not sorry for my decision at all. I had no trouble transferring my beginner skills, to my new wheel ... such freedom and speed, with little effort. I was taught to spin and draft with a Navajo spindle or park and spin. My yarn has gotten finer and finer and I recently spun a cashmere thread, which I will ply.
I naturally use a long draw and my bobbin fills-up fast, which I am grateful for, as I have very little time to spin. I was not attracked to the short-draw or inch worm drafting technique, just my personal choice.
One of the other commentors mentioned a bit of difficulty travelling with the Polonaise and I came up with a solution when I needed to attend a class. I did not glue in the back leg when I assembled my wheel, so that I can remove it. I used an old guitar strap, about 5' to 6' long and attach it to the tension adjustment knob, located at the end where you find the mother-of-all and the other end I attach to one of the wheel knobs, then I sling it over my shoulder like my purse strap and put the extra back leg piece in my purse. It's very easy to manage and with the leg off, it fits into my back seat with extra care.
I know you will enjoy this wheel, if you decide to purchase.
Well, I couldn't find a bad review or opinion anywhere (except for that one shop owner!) so I went ahead and ordered an unfinished Polonaise. It's now on a table in my basement, in pieces, in the process of being finished. I am soooooo slow at that but it will be worth it. Eventually. ;-) I did put it together and try treadling on it before taking it apart again to finish and was really impressed at how smooth the treadling was and how easy it was to start and stop the wheel. Now I just have to get my act together and finally get the finishing done and the wheel in action...
Your suggestion for travel with the wheel is super - thanks!
I have been considering purchasing a new wheel and have been considering the Kromski Polonaise. And similar to you, I'd like a wheel that can accommodate bulky yarns. So... my question for you is: although you didn't go with the Majacraft, how do you find the Kromski for spinning or plying bulky yarn? I hope the choice doesn't have to be an either/or situation!
I haven't had an opportunity to actually see one of these wheels in person, so any insight and info you can provide would be much appreciated!
I've been spinning off and on for years- mostly on a traditional Ashford and an Ashford Traveler. Both of these are older wheels and I am excited about getting something that may have different operating features.
The Polonaise handles most bulky yarns just fine. There's an optional jumbo flyer kit with a larger orifice (0.7" vs 3/8") with a much larger bobbin. The regular bobbin is already so much larger than the traditional Ashford bobbin.
I got a wee bit frustrated trying to fill my regular bobbin with a bulky 2-ply and opted to purchase the Jumbo flyer ... much better and worth the extra $100+.
Have you watched any of the videos on the New Voyager website? They really helped me to make-up my mind.
I noticed people using the Majacraft appeared to be peddling fast, probably due to the smaller wheel circumference. You know the saying, "Bigger is better" and slow spinning is relaxing.
Good luck with your decision.
p.s. There really aren't any "different operating features". The design is very traditional.
Thank you both for the information-- your feedback is exactly what I was looking for!
And especially good to know about the spinning speed as I do like the slower treadling so I'm glad you mentioned that.
I'll check out New Voyager, but I think the Polonaise (with the jumbo flyer) will be the wheel for me!
Just an FYI, New Voyager is the distributor for all Kromski wheels; they import them and distribute to retailers in the U.S.A. I got mine from their "scratch and dent" sale, so my Polonaise was about $100 + off the regular price. The "flaw" is a little wood putty on the inside of the wheel and no one but me knows it's there. Check it out before you pay full retail.