1) The first ‘gigs’ were whipping tops, as in ‘whirligigs’, a word noted from <i>c</i>.1440.
An Act of 1551-2 first referred to gig-mills, used principally for raising a nap on cloth and there are references to both gigs and gig-mills in the textile districts of the West Riding from the eighteenth century: 1730 erexit molam fullonic. sive instrumentu. pro operacione perching and burling, Sowerby
1788 engines for scribbling or carding of wool, giggs for raising of cloth, Hunsworth. The word was used occasionally in Sheffield from roughly the same period: 1738 a newly erected cutlers wheel or Gigg, Brightside. A definition of sorts was offered by a Wakefield clothier: 1760-1 If a shagg bee stout and strong ... make itt fine ... work itt on a barrall cast over with sand in the imitation of a raising mill bye some called a kig mill, Wakefield.