In keeping with the thrust of this site, the intention is to be generally informative rather than prescriptive. If you have researched suppliers, supplies, and components (as suggested in the previous section), you should have a range of options to develop when you arrive at the planning stage. Perhaps you might even trial some ideas by way of 'prototyping'.
However, even before we discuss assembly,  I should emphasize the worth of a good drawing. Drawings (plans), can reveal unforeseen problems, and raise design issues such as placement and fitting of components, and assembly sequences.  Regardless of your drafting abilities - DON'T under-estimate the value of committing your ideas to paper - whether simple sketch plans, or full sized working drawings. These have often saved me a cut in the wrong place - and time too!

    The fitting of axles, spindles, pulleys and faceplates should be done to close tolerance and 'fit'. The mounted pickup must rotate smoothly and 'on centre'. In some cases this will require the faceplate to be 'dressed' to remove any wobble - ideally on a lathe. Don't forget to wear a dust mask (for wooden face plates) during this operation and fit and fix firmly. Bearings, 'fit' and tolerances require ongoing checks, along with belt tension, machine lubrication, and electrical checks. Some type of adjustable 'limiter' assembly, to prevent wire overshooting the bobbin limits will prove advantageous. My own design for adjustable acrylic limiters has served me well.
    'Direction of rotation' issues will come into play for both winding and counting (if mechanical). All my machines were specifically designed to rotate 'top going' (top of spinning coil rotates away from the operator). I feel I can see the building coil and wire 'tracking', more clearly this way, but the opposite rotation can work well if you have no choice. Put in the simplest terms, this comes down to circumstance, personal choice, and what you get accustomed to.
    Except where indicated, most of my machines are designed for hand guiding the wire onto the spinning bobbin. This method best serves low production/multi-type pickup winding. Auto traversing (one method is outlined in Jason Lollar's book) has greater application where higher volume, one-of-a-kind winding is involved.
    I like to control tension by hand on most of my machines, however, 'set and forget' tensioner ideas can be drawn from sewing machine devices. On my 'auto traversing' unit, I use two felt lined aluminium discs that can be tightened together via a bolt. A numbered guitar knob fixed to the top of the bolt, indicates a 'reading'. Coil wire passes through tensioner 'off centre', meaning between the central bolt and the outer edge of the disc.
    Sewing machine type foot controllers will accumulate some heat buildup during operation, and a 'machine kindly' approach is needed to keep this at a minimum during operation. I prefer pedals with a plastic (insulated) outer casing and avoid metal types. All wires, plugs, and connectors should be checked for sound insulation, and safe location away from moving parts.

Mindful of the warnings that follow, I strongly recommend that the would-be constructor undertake some prior training to deal competently with electronics assembly issues. If necessary, refer electrical work to a qualified technician.

'Work Safely-Wind Safely'
Warning: Mains electricity is a potentially fatal phenomenon. No person should embark upon any electrical work without adequate instruction, knowledge and/or supervision. At all times, the constructor must be mindful of the possible hazards and diligently observe all safety precautions/procedures.

Electrical work MUST be executed to a professional standard and comply with local regulatory provisions.

    Winding can be tiresome on the eyes. You should work under good lighting conditions and rest frequently.
 Consider using a headband magnifier (or similar sight aid) for intricate operations.
Safety glasses (spectacles) are recommended where appropriate to the task in hand.

Associated work, including wood and metal work, may involve other hazards which should be addressed appropriately by - protective clothing and/or equipment, machine guarding, fume and dust extraction, safe materials handling and storage, noise abatement, etc.etc. All workshop safety practices and protection should be employed.
'Work Safely -Wind Safely'


While I endorse careful adherance to all appropriate safety guidelines and safety precautions, I cannot/will not be responsible for undertakings (or resulting consequences) by any person working with designs, equipment, materials, skill levels, wiring codes, and/or environmental circumstances outside of my knowledge/awareness and/or beyond my control/supervision.
In this regard, the intending constructor/builder MUST assume ALL risk and liability associated with his/her original project/s.

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