The black o-ring that is at the base of the spindle that goes onto the flange (the circular composite material part which is gray or brown) has to have the correct tension on it where it presses against the pointed steel shaft that comes up from inside the ball winder. This tension is the pressure that you place on this o-ring when it presses against the shaft.
Too much tension and the spindle will not be able to spin on its axis. Too little tension and the spindle will not spin at all. Both will result in the yarn accumulating on top of itself and looking like the rings of Saturn.
You are trying to put enough tension on the oring so that as you turn the crank handle the oring forces the spindle to spindle slowly on its axis. Look at this picture to see the meaning of Spin and Orbit as it relates to a ball winder.
Spin is the spindle spinning on its axis. Orbit is the spindle arm and the spindle turning in a big circle. BOTH spin and orbit are needed to make a ball. Spin is prevented if the o-ring is too tight or the gears are packed with fiber.
Please watch our video (below) entitled O-ring Adjustment #2 for details on how to set the tension.
We also have a cleaning video which also goes into the o-ring issue. Check out our youtube channel for other videos as well.