Having trouble getting the Woolee Winder working?

The most common issue is that the fiber is being wound too high or too low on the bobbin, "piling up" on one end, and leaving empty space on the other end. This is either due to the bobbin riding too low on the flyer, or the Woolee Winder traveling loop needing adjustment.

First, check to see that the mesh between the flyer gear and bobbin gear is correct -- about half the gears should be touching, as seen to the right. If the gears are barely meshed, the bobbin is riding too low on the flyer shaft. Check that the upper bearing is fully seated upwards, pressing it gently upwards and readjusting the upper bearing collet as needed. If the bearing is properly seated, but the bobbin is still too low, the bobbin spacer needs increased until the gear mesh is correct. The simplest method is to install one or two nylon washers (1/4" inside diameter) under the bobbin atop the installed nylon spacer. You could replace the spacer with a slightly longer piece of nylon tubing, but it's likely that humidity changes will require another adjustment, and it's easier to add or remove washers.

If the mesh between the gears is correct, but the Winder is leaving empty space at one end, the Winder's traveling loop needs adjusted. Remove the Woolee Winder from the wheel and set it on a table, with the orifice end away from you. The traveling loop will be on the right flyer arm, and needs twisted slightly and gently to shift the fiber up or down the bobbin. Only a very small change in the loop's position is needed to shift the fiber's position on the bobbin.

If your Winder is leaving empty space at the bottom of the bobbin, the traveling loop needs twisted counter-clockwise, so the left side of the loop rotates slightly towards the tip of the flyer arm.

If your Winder is leaving empty space at the top of the bobbin, the traveling loop needs twisted clockwise, so the left side of the loop rotates slightly towards the flyer's orifice.

The next most common issue is an erratic tension or take-up, with the Winder sometimes becoming very grabby. This is caused by too much scotch tension, or by the flyer collet dragging on the bobbin.

The flyer gear and bobbin gear don't fully mesh, only about half to two-thirds of the gears should overlap. A small gap is needed between the tip of the flyer's metal collet and the top of the bobbin -- if the collet is touching the bobbin it can adversely affect the take-up and tension, usually making it really unpredictable and grabby. A simple test is to install the Winder, then wiggle the bobbin to ensure a slight space exists between the flyer and bobbin. If the flyer sits too close to the bobbin, loosen the flyer collet, slide the Winder slightly up the flyer shaft , and re-tighten the flyer collet. Only a very slight space is needed, just enough to feel the bobbin has wiggle room.