Unless you’re an avid fan of 1997’s box office hit Mouse Hunt, or actively working in the string industry, you probably don’t spend a lot of time thinking about how those balls of string are made. [ord] has, however, and built a tidy little winding machine that has us contemplating the possibilities of how useful LEGO machines can really be.
The design uses a large and imposing-looking ring gear to drive a spinning arm which carries the string onto the bobbin. The bobbin itself is rotated along with the spinning arm as the hand crank that operates the machine is mechanically linked to both. As the arm and bobbin turn, string is deposited onto the bobbin, building up into a pleasing ball of string that looks just like the ones you buy at the store.
We suspect that, unless [ord] is doing some very interesting things that we haven’t seen yet, the string was probably sourced off a reel or ball anyway, and this machine just serves to demonstrate how the process works.
However, it does go to show how LEGO machines can do real work. We’d love to see LEGO put to more practical uses like winding pickups or transformers, or other jobs that are maddeningly tedious when done by hand. Video after the break.
9 thoughts on “LEGO String Winder Hints At Greater Possibilities”
Knitter (and spinner) here. I can see this being immensely useful. As well as way cool!
Now, find a way to feed my bobbin on my sewing machine when I’m doing embroidery work so I don’t have to change it mid stream.
cool application with LEGO though.
If you are either a knitter or crocheter, you know yarn stores use an item like this every day to make balls of yarns from skeins. A neat trick would be to make a Lego one versatile enough to wind everything from string to bulky yarn. I’d get a kit for home if it existed.
So how can we get Lego to make a kit. I would buy it right now!
Now, put a tube on the spindle so you have a core when it’s done.
I can’t help but notice they got all the way through a whole ball without the machine jamming or straight falling apart, which is more than I can say for any off the shelf models I’ve used. May have to seriously investigate this as a solution lol
Oh very cool! I made something similar back in 2009 for winding embroidery floss onto bobbins:
Thats fantistic! I would use this with me sewing items for when I needed to fix my thread or string. Where would I get the instructions to. my own?
I love it! I certain i could get grandma to build this!
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