|Clock reel gears|
While we are on the topic of winding yarn, I thought I might provide a few definitions:
1. Hank: this is the yarn off of the reel; it is tied in several places and twisted for storage.
2. Skein: this is a mill spun preparation. They come in cocoon shapes and may be center pull.
3. Cake: these cute little pats of yarn come from a ball winder. They are usually round tubes that are flat on the top and bottom.
4. Swift: As in the umbrella type. They come in many shapes but all serve the same purpose, to hold a hank of yarn so that in can be wound into a ball (by hand) or a cake (ball winder).
5. Clock Reel: see above. Finished yarn is wound onto these and the niddy noddy.
6. Niddy noddy: Turned wood (or other material; I made one from PVC pipe) in the shape of a capital "I" that fresh yarn is wound onto and into a hank.
7. Ball Winder: Used to wind yarn from a swift into a usable preparation like a cake. Different winders may make different shapes.
Many of these definitions and tools are used interchangeably. Here's one way to remember: Yarn is spun onto a bobbin, then wound off onto a clock reel or niddy noddy and into a hank. The hank goes onto the swift and is wound into a usable preparation with a ball winder.