I'm pleased to (finally) announce that the supplemental KAL yarn is on its way to those patient Gentle Readers who need it. During the course of the skein-winding, I MacGyvered my winder:
This is about the simplest (cheapest) skeinwinder you can get, and I purchased it long ago, before I knew that I would be doing so much yardage measurement of (that's counting, and NUMBERS, if you know what I mean). So when it came time to wind up hundreds and hundreds of little skeins for the knitalong, I realized it was time to trick out the winder with a counting mechanism. I found it HERE, and you can, too. Esoteric consumer electronics, anyone?
I realized eventually that rather than raising the winding mechanism to clear the sensor (which threw off the balance of the winder really badly), I needed to recess the sensor, instead. Fortunately my last flooring adventure (don't ask) required the acquisition of a chisel set, which I happily put to use. Damn nice of those Ashford people to make my cheap skeinwinder out of wood, by the way, so that I could do this. Turns out wood chiselling is kinda fun.
Once the sensor and counter were in place on the base, I mounted the magnet (included with the counter kit) onto the back of one of the winder's arms. And it didn't work at all. Recessing the sensor put too much space between it and the magnet to activate the counter. I added a little wood block under the magnet, to reduce that distance. It worked!
So now as I wind a skein, the little magnet passes the sensor each time around, and the counter keeps track of how many winds. Sassy, no? I love it when a plan comes together. The fact that I needed to wind a million little skeins of yarn, and that it required woodworking to do so, surprises me not a whit. Just one more service we provide.