Braiding - Regular Knots by A.G. Schaake J.C. Turner D.A. Sedgwick
This new and original work is aimed at braiding craftsmen, especially those producing braided horse equipment. The authors are developing new theories and methods of braiding, stressing the practical application, which are based upon mathematical principles discovered by George Schaake in recent years. To disseminate these new methods, so that artisans may produce similar braids of their own design, they are going to publish a series of books - this being the first one - each dealing with a particular family of braids. The 3 authors are bearing a large proportion of the cost of publicity, so only small initial print runs will be possible on their very limited budget; but returns will go into a fund to enable publication of the series to continue. The Foreword to Book 1 states; “Many examples and exercises will be given, to give readers chance to practise using the methods.” Again; “The methods are generally very easy to learn and apply, once the underlying principles of the arithmetical calculations are grasped.” As John Turner, Associate Professor of Mathematics, is Dean of Waikato University’s School of Computing and Mathematical Science, it is perhaps inevitable that one finds ‘n’ values and ‘greater than’/’lesser than’ symbols in the text. Unfortunately, this will always deter simple and innumerate blokes like me. How can you say the book is for “artisans” and then later write “... computing the weaving algorithms”? Still, Guild members should NOT be put off straightaway by this mathematical slant. The specimen diagrams in my Press release were easy to understand (akin to Bruce Grant’s stuff in his Encyclopedia of Rawhide & Leather Braiding) and the Contents section looks promising. The step-by-step weaving formulae for braids of small parts and bights can (we are told) easily be computed “by hand”. For larger braids with complex designs, it may be preferred to use a computer. Computer software and diskettes for personal computers will be made available. Obtainable from the publisher, the software for Book 1 will provide the braider with the fully tabulated braiding algorithms for all desired Turk’s Head Knots, Ring Knots, Gaucho Knots, Head Hunter’s Knots, Perfect Herringbone Knots, Slow Helix Knots Type II, and members of Fan Knots; all these up to any required bight and part numbers. All the braider will have to do to obtain a desired tabulated braiding algorithm is to enter values for two or three knot parameters. The diskette will also contain the necessary software for obtaining the tabulated braiding algorithms for any regular knot of the braider’s own design. Could this be the long-awaited bridge across which revitalised knotting can be, transported from its moribund past into the 21st. century? Let us hope so...even if I am left behind and never really catch up again. We will all be further ahead as a consequence than we would otherwise have been. To that end, the authors invite interested individuals to contact them with a view to other possible publishing arrangements which might be mutually beneficial.