I don't use a swift with mine. I usually end up winding my balls by hand and then thread the winder as usual, drop my handmade ball of yarn on the floor and start winding. The ball bounces around my table and the dog thinks it's strange. My two year old thinks it's a giggle and he often helps me wind. I get a lovely center-pull yarn cake and I love my winder for that. If it's not tight enough (which it usually is) I can send it through the winder again. I don't bother winding into a ball first if I'm just winding up the rest of a skein that is no longer a nice shape. And, I don't pre-wind into a ball if I'm frogging. That works just fine stripping as I wind. Does that help?