Recycled Bobbin Winder

Picture of Recycled Bobbin Winder

My Grandma wanted a dedicated bobbin winder. She liked the way one of her sewing machines wound them so I copied the setup it had. I made it with scraps I had lying around. Works pretty good.

Remove these adsRemove these ads by Signing Up

Step 1: Materials

Picture of Materials
  • little DC motor
  • Dowel that fits the bobbin
  • Wood
  • Epoxy
  • Washers
  • Nuts
  • Bolt
  • Basic tools

Step 2: Find a motor

Picture of Find a motor

I had an old nail sander that I took the motor out of.

I took the switch out as well.

Step 3: Cut Dowel For Bobbin

Picture of Cut Dowel For Bobbin

Cut a short piece of dowel and sand the end round.

Drill a hole in the flat end slightly smaller in diameter as the motor shaft.

Press the dowel on the motor shaft.

Step 4: Make a Thread Tension

Picture of Make a Thread Tension

I found some washer and domed them with a ball peen hammer.

Put the to washers on first domed sides together then the two nuts tightening the two nuts together.

Ended up not using the square one.

Step 5: Layout

Picture of Layout

Layout where about you would like everything placed and mark the locations.

Step 6: Motor Housing and Thread Post

Picture of Motor Housing and Thread Post

Drilled a hole in a piece of wood the size of the motor part way through. Then drilled a smaller hole for the arbor.

Drill a hole in the bottom for the thread post and glue in.

Step 7: Glue Up

Picture of Glue Up

Center the motor in the housing and glue i with epoxy.

Then glue the motor housing to the back board.

I cut a small piece of wood and glued it to the back to bring out the thread tensioner.

Drilled a hole smaller then the threads of the bolt for the tension and screwed it in.

Step 8: Electrical

Picture of Electrical

I took the C battery box off and soldered a AA one I had in the junk drawer.

Screw the switch and battery pack to the back.

Thought AA would be more convenient.

Step 9: Testing

Picture of Testing

Got an empty bobbin and thread turned it on and it works like a charm.

There you have it a Dedicated Recycled Bobbin Winder.

rimar20001 month ago

Good work.

Does not the thread tensioner need a soft spring?

I thought the same.

For a even tension on the bobbin you need a spring, if you look at your sewing machine you will see that the domes are flexible. If the thread got a knot or thickness (especially by low cost thread is this a problem ) then it wil not break.

@LoMac what do you think about a end switch?

LoMac (author)  morthole1 month ago

I was in a bit of a hurry and I was just working from a picture so I didn't notice a spring. I could probably salvage one from a clicky pen.

I thought about putting a switch to stop it wouldn't be hard at all but she said it's fine without it.

Ygreg1 month ago

Very nice ! I was working on a similar project a few weeks ago. Your design is neat and will inspire the mark II of my winder.

This is great, thanks for posting it.




Get More Out of Instructables

Already have an Account?


PDF Downloads
As a Pro member, you will gain access to download any Instructable in the PDF format. You also have the ability to customize your PDF download.

Upgrade to Pro today!