This question was asked about installing an apron on a Weavers Delight loom, but the answer should be applicable to most other looms as well.
<< can anyone explain the proper method of installing an
apron on a Weavers Delight loom. The old one was attached
with carpet tacks. How do you keep everything straight? >>
First off, buy cotton canvas that will reach from the old installation, around the breast beam to the heddles on your loom (and maybe 6" more for hems) Install it warp wise for strength. Warp is parallel to sides of loom. Rip ends crosswise so weft is straight. Triple fold as Birgitta mentioned. I run mine through a sewing machine to hold the edge. Triple fold hem in leading edge near beater. Sew it also. You can use wood screws to attach instead of carpet tacks.
About every six inches slit hem on leading edge. Put 3/8 metal rod into hem or rod pocket. Cut seine cord about 14 inches long. Put seine cord over rod in pocket at slit area, tie ends together in overhand knot, very close to ends. Repeat process for every slit. Leave knot near apron. Use lark's head to hold second rod in front of apron. When apron is pulled forward over breast beam and toward reed, heddles, the longer length and space between the two rods will allow good finger space for manipulation of knots, and result in less wasted warp for projects.
Juanita with a Weaver's Delight
Getting the apron on squarely:
I prepared the apron and inserted the dowel rod. Then I temporarily attached the dowel to the reed (in the beater). This makes sure that the apron is coming over the breast beam square with reed/beater. Start attaching the apron in the center of the cloth beam. Work out from the center, keeping even tension on the apron.
Here's what I did & I'm happy with it. My apron was ripped & had skinny wooden dowels. I cut the apron STRAIGHT. I hemmed it with a big (2" ) hem. I cut slits in the hem about 3" apart. I cut some cotton strapping into 6" lengths, folded them in half, then inserted them in the slits & sewed through the whole thing. I replaced the dowel with about a 1/2" rod (easy to tie onto the spaces between the straps) and I've been happily weaving ever since. When I'm doing a bunch of rugs, I unroll the cloth beam, then slide the rod out the side in a sort of "un-screwing" fashion. I cut off all but one rug & roll that up with the apron (with or without the rod this time.) I only use the rod when I put on a new warp or change the threading. (Or if I happen to be in a "rug emergency" and need to cut off all of them!) Most of the time, the rod is just laying around - but it is strong & straight when I need it.
Laurie in PA