\ ˈspül How to pronounce spool (audio) \

Definition of spool

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a cylindrical device which has a rim or ridge at each end and an axial hole for a pin or spindle and on which material (such as thread, wire, or tape) is wound
2 : material or the amount of material wound on a spool


spooled; spooling; spools

Definition of spool (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to wind on a spool
2 : wind entry 3 spool the thread off the bobbin
3 : to regulate the transmission of by means of a spooler spool data

intransitive verb

1 : to wind itself on a spool
2 : to be wound or unwound
3 : to regulate data flow by means of a spooler

Examples of spool in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun STAGGERING GENIUS World of Outlaws cars use a spool in place of a differential, so both rear tires spin at the same rotational speed. David Beard, Car and Driver, "Weighing in at 1400 Pounds, with 900 Horsepower, Outlaws Drift Like Champs," 3 May 2020 The sewing guild got involved and began to fix the bands, and when the supply of elastic was exhausted, the group switched to spools of nitrile vinyl, a stretchy, nonlatex material used for tourniquets. USA TODAY, "Subdued funeral for Zulu king, sewing guild fixes masks, mayor defies NM governor: News from around our 50 states," 28 Apr. 2020 Cay grinned, then looked down at his spool of red thread. David Canfield, EW.com, "First look: Disney's epic new fairy-tale series begins with Julie C. Dao's magical Broken Wish," 13 Apr. 2020 Abe Troyer went home that night carrying three heavy spools of wire. Elizabeth Williamson, New York Times, "In Ohio, the Amish Take On the Coronavirus," 9 Apr. 2020 The group received a $10,000 donation from the American Institute of Architects, California Council, and the L.A. firm Gruen Associates donated 60 spools of PLA filament material, a type of vegetable-based, biodegradable plastic. Los Angeles Times, "USC leads an army of architects making masks for medical workers using 3-D printers," 7 Apr. 2020 That same spool is oversized, so line should peel off on the cast. Joe Cermele, Outdoor Life, "Tackle Test: The Best New Fishing Rods and Reels for 2020, Ranked and Rated," 23 Mar. 2020 Surrounded by spools of thread and rolls of cloth, the trio make Cowboy Pajamas for adults and children, Jeans for Justice and customers’ special orders in a 1,000-square-foot open space. Vincent T. Davis, ExpressNews.com, "San Antonio woman finds common thread of purpose as head seamstress of South Side nonprofit," 2 Mar. 2020 The researchers performed a variant of the experiment that extended the link from 22 kilometers to 50 kilometers, albeit with fibers wound on spools. Adrian Cho, Science | AAAS, "Quantum internet closer as physicists stretch spooky link between atoms," 13 Feb. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb To increase throttle response, the electric blower generates boost while the turbos spool up to speed. John Pearley Huffman, Car and Driver, "2020 Audi S6 Is Less and More Than the S7," 8 Apr. 2020 And for the first time, the Wrangler runs on diesel, thanks to a 3.0 V6 Turbo Diesel engine that whistles and clatters as the turbo spools up and driving the monster to bear down on anything in its path. Hannah Elliott, Bloomberg.com, "The Diesel Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Takes Off-Road Glory to the City," 6 Feb. 2020 If that’s the case, China may need to spool back ambitions for its Digital Silk Road to countries closer to home. Washington Post, "For China, Israel Loses Its Promised Land Allure," 22 Feb. 2019 All rods and reels were 5-weight models, and all were spooled with the same weight-forward floating line. Joe Cermele, Outdoor Life, "Tackle Test: The Best New Fishing Rods and Reels for 2020, Ranked and Rated," 23 Mar. 2020 That extra boost is administered with silky refinement just off idle, during gear changes, and in a handful of other situations when the V-8 might pause while its turbos spool up. Scott Oldham, Car and Driver, "2021 Mercedes-AMG GLE63 S Defines Muscle-Bound Refinement," 28 Feb. 2020 What is more, since Mr Akimoto’s arrest on December 25th, the allegations have spooled out to ensnare five other politicians, all but one from the ruling Liberal Democratic Party. The Economist, "The chips are down The Japanese government wants to build three flashy casinos," 6 Feb. 2020 First, consider spooling up with a thin-diameter braided main line, rather than monofilament or fluorocarbon. Outdoor Life, "5 Bluegill Facts That Will Help You Catch More Fish," 27 Jan. 2020 A half hour later, a long-time visitor needed a reel spooled with fishing line. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Column: San Diego fly-fishing haven Stroud Tackle reminds us of unrushed yesterdays," 27 Sep. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'spool.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of spool


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1603, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for spool


Middle English spole, from Middle Dutch spoele; akin to Old High German spuola spool

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Time Traveler for spool

Time Traveler

The first known use of spool was in the 14th century

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Last Updated

23 May 2020

Cite this Entry

“Spool.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/spool. Accessed 30 May. 2020.

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More Definitions for spool


How to pronounce spool (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of spool

: a round object that is made to have something (such as thread, wire, or tape) wrapped around it


\ ˈspül How to pronounce spool (audio) \

Kids Definition of spool

: a small cylinder which has a rim or ridge at each end and a hole from end to end for a pin or spindle and on which material (as thread, wire, or tape) is wound

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More from Merriam-Webster on spool

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with spool

Spanish Central: Translation of spool

Nglish: Translation of spool for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of spool for Arabic Speakers

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