These lovely batts smacked me right down. Beautiful suri alpaca, merino, silk and nylon. And they fought me every step of the way. Lumpity, slubbity, thickity and thinnity. I never got a grasp on a good drafting method and I fiddled constantly. I really despaired of the finished yarn, until I set the twist. A bit of a soak, and a good couple of thwacks against the tub, and it's actually something approaching yarn:
Then, stablize the dowel by drilling some pilot holes through the supports and into the dowel on either end, then some small screws. If your cheapo shelf's dowel is firmly affixed and doesn't rotate, then you can skip this step.
Finally, drill holes just above the dowel on either side and sand or file the inside smooth. You don't want these holes to be too huge or too far up because you need for the yarn to go through the yarn meter at the same level as the track on the meter, or slightly below. Make sure you have it well sanded to prevent snagging your yarn. I use my orifice hook to thread the yarn through the holes, alternately, you could saw some slots for easier yarn threading.Voila! Your very own $17 yarn meter! Last time I looked, yarn meters were $50 in the knitting catalogs, and it's the exact same fishing line counter! For extra stability, I like to clamp this on my counter with some cheapo C-clamps I got at the dollar store. Oh, and don't forget to divide by 3. It counts feet, not yards.