1- 8 1s cross RH to double triangle position with 2s+3s and set, 1s cast up to top and dance down until they are between 2s and 3s
9-16 1L dances RH across with 2M+3M while 1M dances LH across with 2L+3L, 1s followed by 2s+3s dance down centre
17-24 3s followed by 2s+1s dance up and 3s+2s cast down to places, 1L dances LH across with 2M+3M while 1M dances RH across with 2L+3L
25-32 1s dance up to top and cast down to 2nd place opposite side, 1s dance ½ Fig of 8 around 2s to end in 2nd place on own sides. 213
(MINICRIB, Dance Crib compiled by Charles Upton, Deeside Caledonian Society, and his successors)
1-2 1s cross down to face out between corners;
3-4 2s1s3s set on the sides;
5-8 1s cast up, meet, lead down;
9-12 1L2M3M right hands across WHILE 1M2L3L left hands across;
13-16 1s, followed by 2s 3s, lead down;
17-20 3s, followed by 2s 1s, lead up and cast, 3s finishing in 3rd place;
21-24 2M1L3M left hands across WHILE 2L1M3L right hands across;
25-28 1s lead to the top and cast;
29-32 1s half figures of 8 round 2s, finishing 2s1s3s.
(MAXICRIB, Scottish country dancing instructions compiled by Reuben Freemantle)
1-2 2s must be awake to move up.
13-20 Take nearer hands to lead down and up.
-20 3s must have completed the casting to 3rd place before starting the hands across, otherwise there will not be room enough for 1s to pass through second place on bar 28 and finish there on bar 32.
Bobbins are typically found in sewing machines and used in spinning, weaving, knitting, sewing, or lacemaking. The bobbin provides temporary or permanent storage for the yarn or thread.
It is most probable that the bobbins referred to in this Scottish country dance are those used in the jute mills which took up the spun jute, not the small and often pretty ones used in lace-making and embroidery.
The "shifters", often children by today's standards, exposed to the noise of the spinning frames and the danger of open drive belts, removed the full bobbins and replaced them with empty bobbins.
The title of this dance, Shiftin' Bobbins, is found in The Jute Mill Song - Song written by Mary Brooksbank of Dundee, who worked in the mills and died in 1980 at the age of 82.