Common Comb Questions and Technical Info
What's the difference between the comb settings?
There are 4 different settings of tines, also referred to as "pins". The setting is the distance that the tines are apart from one another. Pitch refers to how many rows there are.
These are 3 pitch, with tines measuring 1/16" diameter, about 3" long and are set apart on 1/8" centers.
There are 74 total tines (25 each in the front and back rows and 24 in the middle row).
They are best suited for superfine, silky fibers like kid mohair and cria alpaca. They also work well on extremely superfine wools.
These are 2 pitch, with tines that are 3/32″ diameter, about 4.25″ long, and set 3/16″ on center.
The full size ExtraFines have 43 polished, hardened steel tines, (22 in the front row and 21 in the back row), in a 5" wide unfinished hard maple head with a 4" working width.
The ExtraFine Minis have 33 tines (17 in the front row and 16 in the back row), in a 4” wide unfinished hard maple head with a 4” working width.
The 2 pitch full size Fines have 33 polished hardened steel tines (17 in the front row and 16 in the back row), 3/32″ diameter, about 4.25″ long, and set 1/4″ on center in a 5” head with a 4” working width.
The 2 pitch Fine Minis have 25 polished, hardened steel tines (13 in the front row and 12 in the back row) in a 4” head with a 3” working width of 3”.
The single pitch mini combs have the same setting but only one row of 13 tines.
These are 2 pitch, with tines that are 1/8" diameter, about 4.5 inch long and spaced 3/8" apart on center.
What woods are used to make the comb head and handle?
Most of the combs are made using hard maple which is very durable. They come unfinished and do not require any finish, however, if you wish, you may use a good quality wood oil (think Danish) or a wood stain.
The Fine Minis also come in Cherry and Walnut and are finished with a Danish oil to bring out the color of the wood.
What metal is used for the tines?
The tines are made of hardened steel and not stainless steel. Everything has pros and cons. The tines are very strong and under normal use, will not bend out of alignment. The down side is that they can rust if exposed to moisture for prolonged periods of time.
Oh no, my combs have rust on them, now what?
In the event that you notice rust on the tines, we would recommend one of two approaches.
The first is to use 00 or 000 steel wool and rub it up and down on the tines. This is usually sufficient to remove light rust.
Another way is to use very fine sandpaper, about 600 grit, take small pieces curved in half (but don't crease the paper) and put it around each tine and rub either up and down or back and forth. You may have to do this to both sides of the tines.
Both methods will remove rust from the metal. Sometimes the rust will have left a dark spot where it was. This does not affect further use.
How to store
If your combs or hackles are set up for combing, make sure when not in use, that you cover the tines with the paperboard cover provided.
Your new combs come in a plastic bag secured with a rubber band. When not in use, keeping them in the bag is the best way to avoid exposure to humidity which could cause rust on the tines. In a temperature controlled environment under normal circumstances, humidity shouldn't be an issue.