Yarn Ball Winder 101: Types, Comaparision, How to and FAQs

When you buy through links on readyforten.com, As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

Do you love knitting? If yes, then yarn ball winder is a vital tool you should have to make work easier and save time.

The operation of these tools requires the use of hands, and you have enough time they can do a great job.

Sometimes, winding yarn using your hands may be tiresome. You may feel pain in wrists as a result of straining in your shoulders and arms.

Therefore, below is the full detail on the manual and electric yarn ball winder.


Manual Vs. Electric ball yarn winders

These are the most known and commonly used by starters or hobbyists who only knit when they feel like. For this reason, there is no need for you to buy an electric yarn winder, use manual ones.

Manual yarn ball winders are cheaper compared to electric ones. However, if you intend to use your tool to knit for an extended period, you should have an electric yarn ball winder. But, if you knit for leisure, try manual ones.

As their name suggests, manual yarn ball winders have a lever and a handle. You are required to rotate the handle so that to enable the apparatus work, which in turn, will convert the yarn skein to a rigid and sturdy ball.

Manual yarn ball winders have a design so that you can drag the yarn from inside. Here, the speed of your work depends on how faster is your hands.

Electric yarn ball winders use electricity, and some operate using batteries. Therefore, what you need to do here is to switch ON your tool to make it work.

You don’t have to manually operate the tool because it is an automatic yarn ball winder that comes with different settings in speed. A swift umbrella swift can be used with an electric yarn ball winder to convert your skeins, forming a tight yarn ball.

Therefore, manual electric ball yarn winder is the best because they are relatively cheap.

Yarn Ball Winder 101

Step by step guide to setting up a Yarn Ball Winder

Before you start to wind, it’s good to set up your equipment. Items that are needed here are; a yarn swift, ball winder, yarn skein, and finally, a table. Below are steps to set up a yarn ball winder using Amish yarn swift style.

  1. Gather your yarn swift

Assembling the Stanwood swift is faster because you only need to lock the base using two pieces of wood. Insert the pin at the center between the two arms.

  1. Fix the pegs in specific holes

Place pegs in the holes, tying untwisted skein together.

  1. Wrap the skein around the pegs

Ensure that the yarn loop slides around the pegs, they should not drape loosely.

  1. Assemble your skein

Spot the bond holding loops together, then unite and cut them carefully using scissors. It would be best if you were keen here to avoid cutting your skein. Here, the skein will have two relaxed ends, and one will be more approachable than the other. It is advisable to use an accessible one.

  1. Clamp your ball winder to the table

At this step, connect the center cylinder to the base and lock it in the place by turning.

  1. Thread the yarn in the wire loop

Place a loose end in the curlicue loop through the wire arm. The arm directs the yarn from the swift up to the winder.

  1. Attach loose end to the notches of your ball grinder

Now that you have threaded loose end, tightly place it to the cylinder in the notches. The notches tie the cylinder in place when winding the yarn ball.

  1. Use your hands to pull the yarn

Once you start to crank, swift will rotate quickly and smoothly hence freeing yarn from hank.

  1. Turning the yarn ball clockwise

You can now start winding because everything set up. Wind the crank slowly in a clockwise direction. Use the other hand to direct the yarn on the ball winder and the swift.

This is helpful because sometimes yarn may be stuck in the swift arms. If you are comfortable with cranking, you can increase speed, but be careful because you can break the ball winder.

  1. Finish the ball

Continue cranking and directing them from the swift to have “a yarn cake.” The swift will turn along automatically with the help of the ball winder feed yarn on the winder faster and smoothly.

  1. Drag the yarn from the winder

Once you have entirely wound the yarn skein, slide it out from your ball winder. What you will get is not really but something a bit flatter with a hole at the center.  This hole keeps you from tightly turning the yarn. Now you are done with your yarn making.


Tips For Using a Yarn Ball Winder

  1. Ensure that your apparatus is far from each other– Before winding, you need to connect the yarn to the ball winder. At the top of your grinder, slide the yarn in the yarn metal guide passing through plastic disk notch.
  2. Tuck the loop on the swift- When you turn the hank, the yarn is pulled outside.
  3. Cut the ties keenly using a scissors– use small scissors to snip the bonding close to the knot.
  4. Wind at an advised speed– try to maintain your speed so that you get desired results.
  5. Direct the yarn using your other free hand– let the yarn twirl on your other free hand to ensure that it has proper guidance to the tension pin.


Frequently Asked Questions

Yarn Ball Winder 101 FAQ

Question: How to wind a yarn with the ball winder

Place the yarn on the swift, then carefully untwist the hank or skein, connect the yarn to the winder, make your center-pull yarn “yarn cake,” then slowly spin the handle, get your “yarn cake” from the ball winder and use it.

Question: How to make yarn ball winder

Set up your apparatus, put the yarn to the swift, fix the yarn to your ball winder, wind, finish, then use your ball of yarn.

Question: How can you use a yarn swift and a ball winder?

First, you need to set up your swift of yarn, hold your yarn hank, put the yarn to the swift, transparent all holdings, spot the yarn end that is outside of your hank.

Question: Why do you need a swift with a yarn ball winder?

Swift of yarn enables you to wind yarns effectively to perfect balls

Question: How can you make a wooden yarn ball winder?

Turn to round from blank, then put the blank in between centers, decide how big you want the handle to look like, then make a mark on the ball winder, smooth and shape the ends of the ball winder, form its handle then finish.

Question: Why do you use a yarn ball winder?

They are cheaper and most popular in the market.

Question: How tight should a yarn ball binder work?

It should be held tight enough to prevent the yarn from falling off from the pegs.

Question: Why use a yarn ball winder instead of a skein of yarn

We use yarn ball winder to correct issues that may arise from tensions.



After going through the above steps and tips on how to use a ball winder, I hope by now you are in a position to make your ball of yarn. It is essential to get quality winder because it will save you time and energy.

Invest in a winder that will do best for you. There is electric and manual yarn ball winder. Therefore, you should buy, depending on how you frequently knit.


Welcome, everyone! I'm Karl D. McGrath, Founder of Ready For Ten, an American living in Thomasville, Georgia. I love everything about writing where my favorite topis of writing are family, kids, home improvement, tools, ourdoor, kitchen gadgets, etc. I love to spend time with my wife, kids and friends. I work closely with several charities and have a passion for making people laugh. If you would like to chat with me please feel free to reach out via facebook or twitter or email.

Leave a Comment