A Dictionary of Occupational Terms Based on the Classification of Occupations used in the Census of Population, 1921.
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Sub-order 1.—Textile Workers

365.—Spinners and Piecers (Mule, Ring, Cap, and Flyer)

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assistant driver, assistant shifting mistress
assists shifting mistress q.v.
billy tenter
see piecer billy ; cf. billy tenter (363).
cap frame tenter
see spinner, cap.
creeler (woollen and worsted)
(i) collects condenser bobbins from card room, and takes them to mule room;
(ii) places full bobbins in position on worsted spinning frame, and removes empty bobbins therefrom.
curler, hair
see spinner, hair ; cf. hair curler (398).
see piecer, cross.
doffer, patent ; patent doffing frame spinner
a spinner q.v. minding a spinning frame fitted with an automatic doffing arrangement to remove full bobbins.
driver, shifting driver
see shifting mistress.
end lapper
assists spinner; attaches loose ends of yarn to bobbins.
framer (wool spinning)
a spinner q.v. who minds one whole wool spinning frame, as distinct from one who minds a frame and a half or a short side frame.
head spinner ; mule head minder
is leading hand of a pair of spinners, who jointly mind one or more spinning machines; engages and pays under spinner and piecers q.v.
horsehair curler
as for spinner, hair.
improver (wool spinning)
a promoted piecer q.v. working as a minder or spinner q.v. under instruction of another spinner; period of improvership depends more upon vacancies at frames than on experience.
joiner, joiner minder ; joiner-spinner, partner-minder partner-spinner
a spinner q.v. who joins with another operative in minding a pair, or more, of spinning mules, and shares joint earnings with partner in agreed proportions.
one of a pair of piecers q.v. who share between them duties of "big " and of "little " piecer, and who divide joint earnings in agreed proportions.
see joiner.
attaches yarn to bobbins of several spinning frames, and assists in restarting frames after spools have been removed by doffer (399) q.v.; when yam breaks in spinning, lays end of spun yarn over end of that from roving bobbin, so that, in reeling, ends may be neatly knotted; cf. layer (363).
looper (wool)
a spinner q.v. who minds a frame which spins a special kind of yarn which has a loop spun into one of its strands; feeds machine and watches accurate working of looping mechanism, reporting maladjustments to foreman; ties up broken ends.
middle minder
see spinner, under.
see spinner.
Mrs. Shifter (slang)
see shifting mistress.
mule head minder
see head spinner.
mule man, mule minder
see spinner, mule.
partner-minder, partner-spinner
see joiner.
patent doffing frame spinner
see doffer, patent.
piecer, piecener ; mule piecer, spinner's piecer, spinning piecer, spinning mule piecer, spinning mill piecer
pieces, or joins together, by hand, threads broken in spinning; keeps mule clear of waste; sometimes adjusts temper weights, collects full oops of yarn from spindles, and assists spinner q.v. generally.
piecer, big
chief assistant to spinner q.v., usually in coarse spinning districts; as for piecer; cf. little piecer (399).
piecer, billy ; hilly tenter
a piecer q.v. on self-acting mules for cotton waste spinning, or in some country districts on spinning mules generally.
piecer, cross ; dodger
a piecer q.v., additional to big piecer and to little piecer, found only in fine cotton spinning, or in spinning on long mules.
piecer, extra
a supernumerary piecer q.v. either supplying place of piecer absent through illness, etc., or employed where bad material causes additional work.
piecer, mule
see piecer.
piecer, ring; ring frame piecer
either a spinner q.v. minding a ling spinning frame or an assistant to a ring spinner q.v. who mends threads broken in spinning, and sometimes doffs, see doffer (399).
piecer, side
chief assistant to spinner q.v. usually in centres where fine cotton is spun; as for piecer.
piecer, spinner's; spinning piecer, spinning male piecer
see piecer.
piecer-minder, piecer-spinner
a piecer q.v. who also performs some of duties of spinner or minder q.v. in assisting in adjusting spinning machine.
ring frame tenter
see spinner, ring.
self-actor joiner
as for joiner.
self-actor minder
as for spinner, mule.
shifter (jute spinning)
is engaged on one spinning frame carriage consisting of seven or eight bobbins; presses empty bobbins on spinning frame spindles; loops yarn through flyer and leaves frame in running order for spinner q.v.; doffs full bobbins and replaces with empty bobbins.
shifter-piecer, shifting-piecer
combines duties of shifter and of piecer q.v.
shifting mistress ; Mrs. Shifter (slang), driver, shifting driver
is in charge of spinning bobbin shifters, and responsible for proper, quick, and systematic shifting of a set of frames.
short side minder (silk spinning)
a spinner (spun silk) q.v. who attends frame having fewer spindles than usual type.
side minder
as for spinner, mule ; sometimes specifically designated, e.g. fly (flyer) side minder.
spinner ; minder, yarn spinner
minds spinning machine, which attenuates and twists fibre into yarn; keeps machine supplied with material, controls power drive of machine, and clears faults, e.g., knots, tangles, breakages, which interrupt even and continuous production of yarn; sometimes also joins broken threads, adjusts temper weights, superintends taking off of bobbins, etc., usually assisted by piecers q.v. or other assistants, whom he/she commonly engages and pays; precise duties vary with type of machine and fibre used; often further distinguished according to fibre spun, e.g., asbestos spinner, cotton spinner, jute spinner; or according to type of machine used, e.g., band spinner, fly spinner, flyer spinner, mule spinner, ring spinner; or according to method employed, e.g., dry spinner, wet spinner.
spinner, big
senior of two male spinners jointly minding a pair of spinning mules.
spinner, billy
(i) a spinner q.v. who minds self-acting mules for cotton waste spinning; sometimes also minds carding machines which supply his mules with rovings;
(ii) in certain country districts minds spinning mules generally.
spinner, bump mill (cotton waste)
spins candle wick yarn from coarse cotton waste; guides loosely twisted yarn from previous machine through rollers on to spindles, where it is wound after receiving slightly more attenuation; operates special roving frame upon which such yarn is spun.
spinner, cap ; cap frame tenter
minds a spinning frame in which guide over spindle is in form of a cap; as for spinner.
spinner, double
(i) a female spinner q.v. who minds two spinning frames;
(ii) hand-spins rope yarn with both hands at same time, on two bobbins.
spinner, dry (flax and hemp)
minds a frame in which yarn is spun dry, as distinguished from wet spinner q.v.
spinner, French
a spinner q.v. who minds spinning frame on which degreased wool is spun.
spinner, fuse
attends machine which spins yarn on to bobbins in form suitable for use in manufacture of mining and safety fuses; places on machine bobbins of yarn to be spun; starts and stops machine by pulley lever, mends breakages to yarn, removes bobbins holding spun fuse.
spinner, gill
a spinner q.v. who minds a gill spinning frame; guides hair through gills, or combs, to drawing rollers, and thence through flyers on to bobbins.
spinner, hair; hair line spinner ; hair curler
spins or curls horsehair or other hair or fibre into ropes, by drawing it from a hank and attaching it to a hook in an upright frame; controls engine which draws frame along rails and rotates hook, strands being curled thereby into a rope; sometimes specifically designated, e.g. horse hair spinner.
spinner, hand (mule); hand mule spinner
(i) uses a small spinning jenny, turned by hand; spins cops, in domestic manufacture, for hand looms;
(ii) operates a spinning mule, traversing carriage of which runs outward by mechanical means, and is pushed inward by hand.
spinner, mule ; mule man, mule minder
a spinner q.v. who minds a pair of spinning mules, arranged facing each other, i.e. spinning machines with intermittent action, which simultaneously draw and twist cotton, wool, etc. into yarn or thread, and wind it into cops.
spinner, ring; ring frame spinner ; ring frame tenter
a spinner q.v. who minds a spinning frame in which the twist given to the yarn by a revolving bobbin is regulated by the drag of a small metal loop sliding on a ring around the bobbin.
spinner, rope; rope yarn spinner
(i) (machine process ) minds spinning frames, usually from two to four, on which rope yarn is spun; as for spinner;
(ii) (hand process ) feeds flyers with fibre, which he keeps wrapped round his waist; removes bobbins when full, and replaces them by empty ones.
spinner, self-actor
as for spinner, mule.
spinner (spun silk)
a spinner q.v. who minds a spinning frame in which roving, i.e., silk in ropy form, is attenuated and twisted; cf. spinner (thrown silk) (372).
spinner, tape (mining and safety fuses)
as for spinner, fuse.
spinner, throstle; throstle frame spinner ; throstle tenter
a spinner q.v. who minds a throstle spinning frame, i.e., any continuous acting spinning frame, having twisting apparatus stationary as distinguished from a mule; cf. spinner, mule.
spinner, under ; middle minder
is subordinate of a pair of spinners, who jointly mind one or more spinning machines; works under direction of head spinner q.v. and supervises work of two piecers.
spinner, wet (flax or hemp)
a spinner q.v. who places rove bobbins in creel above spinning machine; guides rove end through water trough and through reach rollers and flyer on to bobbin.
spinner, yarn
see spinner.
string maker
see twine maker.
throstle tenter
see spinner, throstle.
twine maker, twine spinner ; string maker
a highly skilled operative who twists heist quality twines by hand; winds threads round his waist, and pays-out as he twists them.
twister (spun silk)
attends frame used alternately for spinning spun silk or for doubling; puts bobbins on creel and passes ends through rollers and so to another bobbin; cf. spinner (spun silk) and doubler (366).
wheel minder
a mule spinner q.v. in wool spinning department.

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From: A Dictionary of Occupational Terms Based on the Classification of Occupations used in the Census of Population, 1921,
Ministry of Labour, 1927. Digitised by Peter Christian, August, 2016.   This text is in the Public Domain.