Take the 2-minute tour ×
English Language & Usage Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for linguists, etymologists, and serious English language enthusiasts. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Looking for a general term for things one would store on a spool -- thread, string, lanyard, wire, that sort of thing. Things that occur in long lines and will get tangled up if you don't organize them properly.

share|improve this question
    
"Fiber" or "thread" might work... (even though you mentioned "thread" already - I think "thread" is actually fairly generic) –  advs89 Feb 26 '11 at 2:17
    
Is there a motivation for the need for such a generic term? You've articulated the concept but that doesn't guarantee a concise existing term in English. –  Mitch Jan 1 '12 at 14:47
    
@Mitch: Yes, I asked because I have a motivation. I understand that not all concepts map to English words. –  chaos Jan 1 '12 at 18:34
    
@chaos: OK then, what is your motivation? –  Mitch Jan 1 '12 at 23:06
    
@Mitch: Naming a software object that can take on any of these as specific forms. (I don't see how knowing this helps anything.) –  chaos Jan 1 '12 at 23:37

3 Answers 3

up vote 10 down vote accepted

You might refer to all of those as line, which means

a length of cord, rope, wire, or other material serving a particular purpose

share|improve this answer

All things that could be stored on a spool have coils. So perhaps the word 'windings' in combination with coils. As in: "Windings, left uncoiled, are hazardous."

share|improve this answer

For the record, I'm considering using "filament".

share|improve this answer

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.