Recently one of our notions suppliers sent us an electric ball winder to test. I've been meaning to give it a try for a couple of weeks now, but never had the time. Now that I'm home with sick kids, it was the perfect opportunity.PROS
It's from Boye, seems to be well made and sturdy, and retails for just $89. It has a nice big suction cup and a great carrying handle. It was super easy to set up, and once I plugged it in and turned it on, it started to wind automatically.
I tried the different winding speeds, and found that it was very easy to adjust. And even though I switched the speed numerous times during the actual winding process, it made no difference to the tension in my finished center-pull skein.
This winder would be great if you did a lot of winding. If you really mind cranking the lever on the regular ball winders, this will certainly save wear and tear on your arms, hands and wrists.
There's a certain WHIRRRRR that I'm used to when I'm using my regular winder. It's the sound of the winder winding and the swift turning and it's actually a pleasant sound. The electric winder is a bit on the loud side... a little jarring.
Even when I had the winder working at the highest speed, the umbrella swift was still turning rather slowly. I was actually worried that the swift was going TOO slowly, and that this would cause a problem. So the motor is going quickly, but the yarn isn't being wound any faster.
I'm not sure I felt comfortable leaving the room - or even taking my eyes off it - while it was winding. Perhaps with more use I would be?