Wire insulating winding machine, 1837.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
From about 1837 onwards there developed a need for circulated electrical cables, insulated by cotton or silk. This machine was of a type that being hand powered could be supplied to outworkers/homeworkers who were supplied with the wire and covering material and paid for the work done. This is a six-headed machine. Each wire is pulled through a hollow spindle around which revolves the disc carrying the covering material on a bobbin. The graded belt driven pullies are arranged so that wires of different diameters may be covered. Manufactured by Henley Telegraph Works in Holborn, London. Overall measurements 1.15 x .88 x .7 m.