US 3769815 A
A method of producing a textile fabric on a multi-needle stitching machine comprising the steps of feeding at least one film comprised of a synthetic polymer into said stitching machine, actuating said machine, whereby said film is split into a plurality of film elements and simultaneously integrated in the ongoing textile manufacture, and collecting said manufactured textile.
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Unite States Patent [1 1 Ploch et al.
[ 1 Nov. 6, 1973 METHOD OF PRODUCING TEXTILES 0N KNITTING MACHINES  Inventors: Siegfried Ploch; Walter Scholtis;
Heini Gerischer; Heinz Zschunee; Karl-Heinz Dietrich, all of Karl-Marx-Stadt, Germany  Assignee: Forschungsinstitut fur Textiltechnologie, Karl-Marx-Stadt, Germany  Filed: Dec. 14, 1970  Appl. No.: 97,823
 US. Cl 66/85 A, 66/191, 66/192, 66/202, 28/DIG. l  Int. Cl. D04b 23/10, D04b 23/08  Field of Search 66/84, 85, 85 A, 66/86 R, 190-195, 202; 28/DIG. 1, 77, 1 CS; 1 12/410  References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 3,474,611 10/1969 Suzuri et a1 28/D1G. 1 3,336,645 8/1967 3,283,788 11/1966 Bottomley et al. 28/DlG. 1 3,427,654 2/1969 Rasmussen 28/D1G. 1
3,542,267 Il/1970 lda 28/1 CS OTHER PUBLlCATlONS 1,285,089, 12-1968, German Application, (Kaps). New Fabrics Without Weaving by K. W. Bahlo, Papers of The American Association for Textile Technology lnc., November 1955 pp. 51-54.
Developments in Slit and Split Film Textiles by J. E. Ford Textile Month December 1968 pp. 79-81. "Mali-Techniques-Present and Future Potentialities," by K. W. Bahlo Knitted Outerwear Times November 25, 1968 pp. 61-63.
Primary Examiner-James Kee Chi Attorney-Nolte and Nolte  ABSTRACT 1 A method of producing a textile fabric on a multi needle stitching machine comprising the steps of feed ing at least one film comprised of a synthetic polymer into said stitching machine, actuating said machine, whereby said film is split into a plurality of film elements and simultaneously integrated in the ongoing textile manufacture, and collecting said manufactured textile.
10 Claims, 18 Drawing Figures Patented Nov. 6, 1973 3,76%,315
7 Sheets-Sheet 1 INVENTORS SIEGFRIED PLOCH WALTER SCHOLTIS HEINI GERISCHER HEINZ ZSCHUNKE KARL-HEINZ DIETRICH BY M M ATTORNEYS Patented Nov. 6, 1973 7 Sheets-Sheet A INVENTORS SIEGFRIED PLOCH WA LTER S'CHOLT/S HE/NI GERJSCHER HEINZ ZSCHUNKE FIG.3
KARL-HEINZ DIETRICH BY %ZZZ 77% ATTORNEYS Patented Nov. 6, 1973 3,769,815
7 Sheets-Sheet L) INVENTORS SIEGFRIED PLOCH WALTER SCHOLTIS HEINI GER/SCHER HEINZ ZSCHUNKE KARL-HEINZ DIETRICH ATTORNEY Patented Nov. 6,1973 I 3,769,8i5
'7 Sheets-Sheet 4 INVENTOHS W L S L 6 HEINI GERISCHER HEINZ ZSCHUNKE KARL-HEINZ DIETRICH BY WM 7% ATTORNEYS Patented Nov. 6, 1973 '7 Sheets-Sheet s,
INVENTORS SIEGFRIED PLOCH WALTER SCHOLT/S HEINI GER/SCHER HEINZ ZSCHUNKE KARL-HEINZ DIETRICH BY 77% g? M FIG/O ATTORNEYS Patented Nov. 6, 1973 E GI ii i u km vokw Q at mm INVENTORS SIEGFRIED PLOCH WALTER SCHOLTIS HEINI GERISCHER HEINZ ZSCHUNKE KARL-HEINZ DIETRICH BY g /fl AT TORNEYYS Patented Nov. 6, 1973 7 Sheets-Sheet 7 INVENTORS SIEGFRIED PLOCH WALTER SCHOLTIS HE/N/ GERISCHER HEINZ ZSCHUNKE KARL-HE/NZ DIETRICH ATTORNEYS METHOD OF PRODUCING TEXTILES ON KNITTING MACHINES The present invention relates to a method of producing textiles on warp knitting machines or multi-needle stitching machines (hereinafter generically referred to by the latter terminology) which insert stitches into a base material which may be layers of continuous filaments, a fiber web or bat, a woven fabric or the like, these multi-needle stitching machines being generally known as Mali machines and including Malir no, Malipol and Maliwatt machines (New Fabrics Without Weaving by K. W. Bahlo, Papers of the American Association for Textile Technology lnc., November, 1965, pp. 51-54).
Fibers which have been cut from a thin film have been used for some time past as components of woven and knitted fabrics. Severed from the film in a separate cutting process, the so-called flat or film yarns are highly oriented and therefore very stiff and wiry. Because they lack the properties which are desirable for textiles, they can be used only for a limited range of articles.
According to one known process, a film which is made of synthetic material is stretched uniaxially before it is cut into narrow strips, strands or filaments. Although the resulting discontinuous web has been employed in the manufacture of non-woven textiles, it has been mainly used in the past for packaging twine, ropes and similar articles. For such purposes the narrow strips, into which the film has been divided, are filamented by compression and a sharp change in direction before they are twisted.
For the filamentation of synthetic films, the prior art includes several other processes which make use of diverse disintegrating machines such as, for example, brushes and particularly metal brushes. Sonic and/or electrostatic effects, combined perhaps with mechanical work, have also been used.
Typically, the filamentation of synthetic films or sheets requires special processing or special apparatus, which are supplementary to the processing and apparatus adapted to convert the filaments into textiles. The conventional processes furthermore restrict the range of applicability for the narrow strips cut from the films and do not fully exploit the potential offered by such material.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION It is, therefore, the primary object of the present invention to extend the range of applicability and the usefulness of splittable synthetic films for the production of textiles.
A further object is to provide a method of converting a synthetic film directly into a fabric on a warp knitting machine or on a machine in which film elements are tied by stitches formed by the warp knitting or the analogous stitching performed by :1 Mali machine.
Another object is to provide a simple and economic process for converting synthetic film directly into knitted goods.
These objects and others which will become apparent hereinafter are attained, in accordance with the present invention, by feeding a splittable film, made of synthetic polymers, into a knitting or Mali machine where it is split or filamented by the reciprocal motion of the pointed needles, pins, notched pile bars, eye needles or such. The resulting filaments or strands are used directly as warp, pile and/or filler yarn, and as stitching (sewing) yarn.
Films made from high polymers, whether of one or more than one monomeric material, commonly known as plastics or thermoplastics," such as polypropylene, polyethylene, polyacrylonitrile or polyamides and which can be oriented by stretching, are well suited as raw material for the method of the present invention. Such films may be additionally scored and/or partially slit. According to one preferred embodiment, the variety of polymer films to be used is to be restricted to those which are splittable only after they have been scored and/or partially cut. In operation, the mechanism of the machine tightens the film, splits it into film elements and uses the latter as warp, filler or stitching yarn.
According to a distinctive feature of the present invention, the film is split not in advance of, but during the fabrication of the textile. Since the film is supplied as an entity, guide devices such as are required for separate yarns can be dispensed with. Any one or more or all the different components of a fabric to be produced on one of the above machines can be derived from a film, that is, for example, the warp, pile, filler or stitching yarn depending on the intended end-use of the fabric.
The distance is so short between the point where the film is still unfilamented, and the point where the mechanism of the machine converts the split film into a fabric, that it is permissible to speak of a direct processing of the film into a textile, in spite of the most thorough division of the film into strands and its transformation into a knitted fabric, the strands may still cohere, at least in part, in the finished article.
According to one preferred embodiment of the invention, the film which is to supply the filler is folded in zig-zag form and fed transversely to the operating direction into the machine so that, upon actuation of the mechanism, the severed strands are oriented nearly at right angles thereto.
One or more films may be processed together with a ready-made base material (web) which may include, for example, a woven or knitted fabric, a bat, a foam rubber sheet or similar material. A base material is required, in particular, for the manufacture of plush fabrics on a Malipol machine wherein the strands of a split film are made into pile loops which are stitched into the base material by means of a stitching yarn. The film is fed into the machine at a higher speed than the base so that, after splitting of the film the resultant strands may be formed into a pile.
Before a film is turned into a textile, according to one of the methods described heretofore, it may be flocked on one or both sides with fibers, for example, by electrostatic deposition, whereby the filamented strands are given a fuzzy surface.
The operation and advantages of the present invention will be more readily apparent from the following examples which are intended to illustrate, without restricting, the invention.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS:
The invention is illustrated in the attached drawings and subsequently described in several examples, without being restricted thereto.
FIG. 1 is a partially schematic isometric view, showing the feeding of a film used as a warp component and the feeding of a film in zig-zag shape as a weft components, in to a Mali machine.
FIG. 2 is a similar view which, in a different position, shows the stitching (or knitting) elements of the Mali machine, while being fed with a film as the warp component, a film as the weft component, and with yarn to be formed into the stitches;
FIG. 3 is a transverse section through the superimposed films forming the warp and weft components during penetration of the needles of the Mali machine, which leads to fibrillating of the films;
FIG. 4 illustrates the stitching elements of a Mali machine when fed with a film as the warp component, a film as the weft component, and a further film as the stitching yarn component, including a compacting or stuffing device for the last mentioned film;
FIG. 5 illustrates fibrillation of the film serving as the stitching yarn component by the eye or guide needles of the Mali machine;
FIG. 6 illustrates fibrillation of the film serving as the stitching yarn component by the eye needles of FIG. 5 in top view, with the fibrillation taking place in alignment with the needles;
FIG. 7 illustrates fibrillation of the film serving as the stitching yarn component by the eye needles of FIG. 5 in top view, with the fibrillation taking place between the needles;
FIG. 8 shows Mali fabric in plan view, the warp, weft and stitching yarn components of which consist of film;
FIG. 9 shows a section through the fabric of FIG. 8, as taken along the line A-A of FIG. 8;
FIG. 10 shows a section through the fabric of FIG. 9 as taken along the line B-B;
FIG. 11 shows a section through a Mali fabric in cross-section, in which a fiber fleece is arranged between the warp and weft components and in which both layers are interconnected by a stitching yarn component;
FIG. 12 is a longitudinal section through the fabric of FIG. 11;
FIG. 13 shows the knitting elements of a Mali machine being fed with a base layer and a film as the pile component, including a compacting device for this film;
FIG. 14 is a transverse section through a pile material produced in accordance with FIG. 13, the pile of which is formed from the fed film and is pulled into thee layer;
FIG. 15 shows the knitting elements of a Mali machine with means for feeding a base layer, a film as pile yarn component, and stitching yarns;
FIG. 16 is a transverse section through a pile material made in accordance with FIG. 15, the tufts of which are formed from film and connected to the base layer by means of stitching yarns;
FIG. 17 shows a film flocked on both sides with fibers;
FIG. 18 illustrates the knitting elements of a warp knitting machine while processing films serving as yarn components and the fabric produced thereby.
DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS Several preferred embodiments of the invention shall presently be described with reference to the drawings. Referring first to FIGS. 1 and 2, a first splittable film I serving to provide a warp component is fed to the working locations of a Malimo machine from a roller 1a, the feeding taking place in longitudinal direction. As a weft component, a second splittable film or foil 2 is withdrawn from a web having a width of approximately 12 inches, the film 2 forming a roll 2a on unwinding rollers 3. From roll 2a the film is fed to a trans verse carriage 7 which, in a manner well known in connection with Malimo machines, reciprocates between two transporting chains 5, 6 which run substantially parallel in the working direction of the machine. In principle, a transverse carriage may be used as for instance that described in U.S. Pat. Nos. 3,440,840 (Frenzel) and 3,030,786 (Mauersberger) the latter reissued as Reissue U.S. Pat. No. 25,749. The transverse carriage comprises rollers 8, 9 and 10 on which the carriage reciprocates along guide rails 11, 12.
Film 2 leaving the slot 13 of the carriage 7 is hung up or placed on the hooked needles of the transporting chains 5, 6 by the carriage at the reversing points of the latter. Chains 5, 6 transport the film which has been folded back upon itself in zig-zag form, to the working location, where it is stitched together with the film l forming the warp component by means of stitching yarns 14 which are presented to slide needles 15 by eye needles 16 of a bar 17, to form stitches, preferably tricot stitches. Knockover bits 18 assure that the slide needles 15 can safely be pulled from the tricot stitches formed from the stitching yarns l4. Retaining pins 20 arranged on a bar 19 together with a retaining bar 21 prevent the produced textile web from being moved along during advance of the slide needles 15 (FIG. 2). During the stitching process the slide needles penetrate the film 1, 2 placed one on top of the other and split the same. Thus a multitude of netlike film elements extending in longitudinal and transverse direction are created which, depending on the film being used, can be fibrillated further.
FIG. 3 shows splitting of the films by slide needles 15, and the formation of longitudinally oriented film elements 1' and of transversely oriented film elements 2'.
Instead of stitching yarns, a further film can be used for stitching the film fed in longitudinal direction to the working location in zig-zag form. As shown in FIG. 4, a film 22 serves as the warp component, a film 23 as the weft component, and a film 24 as the stitching (tricot stitches) yarn component. Film 24 is fed to the working location of the machine with a speed which amounts for instance to 2.8 times the withdrawal speed of the finished fabric. By means of a compacting or stuffing device as shown in principle in U.S. Pat. No. 3,442,101 (Ploch et al) and designed as a circular brush 25 (in FIG. 4) extending over the width of the machine, film 24 is pressed into the hooks of the slide needles 26 arranged in their front working position, and is simultaneously split. Film 24 with each working cycle is offset to the right or left by one pitch between the needles 26, by the circular brush 25. Knockover bits 27 and retaining pins 29 on a bar 28 as well as a retaining bar 30 perform the same functions as described in connection with like elements in FIGS. 1 and 2.
FIGS. 5 to 7 illustrate how the stitching of a longitudinally fed film 31 and a zigzag-shaped film 32 can also be effected with a film 34 which is presented to slide needles 35 as split film elements by eye needles 36. Film 34 fed to the eye needles 36 is split when passing the eye needles, and the thus formed film elements are formed into tricot stitches by the slide needles 35.
When starting the operation, the film ends are being split into individual film elements by means of a comb the teeth of which have a length of about 20 cm; and are spaced in accordance with the gauge of the Mali machine. The split film elements are then pulled into the eye needles 36 by means of a feeding comb well known in warp knitting.
Splitting of film 34' can either be effected in alignment with the eye needles 36' (FIG. 6), or the film 34" can be split between the eye needles 36" (FIG. 7).
The knockover bits 37 and the counter pins 39 provided at the bar 38 as well as the counter bar 40 have the same functions as described in connection with like elements in FIG. 1.
The Mali fabric shown in FIGS. 8 to consists of warp components 41, weft components 42 and stitching yarn components 43 all made from film, and is produced in accordance either with FIG. 4 or with FIG. 5. This material is especially suitable for decorative purposes and curtains.
As in the Examples 1 and2 described above, as warp component a film is fed to the Mali machine, and as weft component a film in zigzag shape is used. Between the two films a fiber web is arranged. The three superimposed layers can be stitched together in accordance either with Example 1 or Example 2. The thus formed material comprises, as shown in FIGS. 11 and 12, film warp component 44, film weft component 45, nonwoven fabric 46 arranged therebetween and the stitching yarn component 47 which can either be a conventional yarn or a film element.
According to FIG. 13 a Malipol machine is fed with a backing fabric 48 and with a splittable film 49 having a wide surface. The machine is equipped with a compacting device similar to that shown in FIG. 4 and in US. Pat. No. 3,442,l0l.'Film 49 is grasped by the flat brush 50 of the compacting device provided with bristles 500, which cooperates with the needles and is pressed into the hooks of slide needles 51. Needles 51 penetrate through film 49 and split the same into a multitude of film elements. At least as many film elements are formed as there are slide needles in the machine. By means of the compacting device the film is with each working cycle, as described in US. Pat. No. 3,442,101, offset by one pitch of the needles to the right or left and is thereby placed over pile bits 52 of bar 53 arranged between slide needles 5]. In this way, the film elements form pile tufts 54 on the base layer 48.
Legs 54a of the pile tufts 54 are pulled to the backside of the backing fabric 48 and there formed into stitch segments, thus effecting a connection of the pile tufts 54 to the backing fabric 48 (FIG. 14).
Knockover bits 55 assure that the slide needles 51 can be removed from the stitches formed by the film elements. The counter bar 56 facilitates the passage of the slide needles 51 during their advancing movement through the backing fabric 48.
As illustrated in FIG. 15, however, it is also possible to affix the yarn elements of the film 58 forming the pile tufts 57 to backing fabric 60 by separate yarns 59. In this instance, instead of the compacting device, in accordance with FIG. 13, an eye needle bar 61 is provided the eye needles 62 of which receive the film 58. The feeding at the beginning of the operation is ef fected in the same manner as described in connection with FIG. 5 (Example 2). During passage of the eye needles 62 film 58 is split and the thus formed film elements are placed over pile bits 64 arranged at bar 63 in view of the lateral displacement of bar 61, and are fixed to the backing fabric 60 as pile tufts 57 by the stitching yarns 59. The yarns 59 are presented to slide needles 66 and are formed by needles 66 into warp knit stitches including stitch segments 590 (FIG. 16). The pile tufts 57 are bound to thereby formed chains 67 of knit stitches alternately right and left.
Knockover bits 68 assure that the slide needles 66 can be removed from the stitches formed by the stitching yarns 59. Counter bar 69 facilitates the passage of the slide needles 66 during the advancing movement thereof through the base material.
Depending on the ability of the film to split, the film elements may become split into finer fibers (fibrillated) when subjected to the Mali process.
The raw material produced in accordance with FIGS. 13 and 15 can be subjected to treatment on a roughening, ironing, shearing or beating machine in order to obtain a plush surface. Prior to this treatment it is recommended to provide a supporting layer on the backside. By means of well known cutting devices it is of course also possible to cut open the pile tufts 54, 57. In this way, cut pile for carpets or the like can be obtained. In accordance with FIG. 18, the working location of a warp knitting machine is fed with two splittable films 70, 71. While'the film 70 has a lower splitting ability, film 71 can be split into very fine fibres. For purposes of starting the operation, the ends of the films are split into individual film elements having a length of approximately 20 centimeters, by means of a comb having points arranged in accordance with the pitch of the needles of the knitting machine. Thereupon, the individual film elements of film 70 are pulled into eye needles 72 of rear laying rail 73, and the film elements of film 71 into eye needles 74.of front laying rail 75, by means of a feeding comb well known in warp knitting.
The further splitting of the film in the direction of movement of the film is effected by the-eye needles 72, 74 which place the thus formed film elements into the hooks of tongue needles 76. The film elements in the rear laying rail 73 are rounded somewhat during this operation. The film elements in the front laying rail 75 are guided in the eye needles 74, are offset at great speed with each stitch, and thereby split into veryfine fibers (fibrillated).
The rear laying rail 73 executes a tricot pattern, and the front laying rail 75 a 2-needletricot pattern so that the two surfaces of the knitting consist of the finely fibrillated film elements of film 71 and the thus formed knittedfabric 77 has a closed, tight appearance.
In all the foregoing embodiments, films 67 may be used, as is shown in FIG. 17, which are flocked on both sides with fibers 67a. In this way, the fibrous character of the film elements upon splitting can be enhanced.
From the above, it is apparent that although the invention has been described hereinbefore with respect to certain specific embodiments thereof, it is evident that many modifications and changes amy be made without departing from the spirit of the invention. Accordingly, by the appended claims, we intend to cover all such modifications and changes as fall within the true spirit and scope of the invention.
1. A method of producing a textile fabric on a machine of the warp-knitting and multiple needle stitching type, comprising the steps of a. moving fabric elements for the production of said textile fabric, including at least one splittable film comprised of a synthetic polymer and another fabric element, into the machine;
b. splitting said film by motion of needles of the machine into a plurality of film elements in form of filaments and substantially simultaneously integrating these filaments with said other fabric element into said textile fabric, at least one of the fabric elements constituting a set of stitching yarns; and
c. collecting the integrated textile fabric.
2. A method as defined in claim 1, wherein said integrating of film elements includes feeding the film elements as warp yarns, lengthwise of said textile fabric.
3. A method as defined in claim 1, wherein said feeding includes the feeding of several splittable films and mutually superposing the same, said penetrating including motions of said needles through the superposed films.
4. A method as defined in claim 1, including arranging the film elements split from at least one of said films as pile yarns in said textile fabric.
5. A method as defined in claim 1, including arranging the film elements split from at least one of said films as weft yarns in said textile fabric, by steps including feeding the respective film in zigzag form transversely into the machine.
6. A method as defined in claim 1, including stitching by means of said needles the film elements split from at least one of said films as stitching yarns in said textile fabric.
7. A method as defined in claim 1, including the step of d. feeding at least one of said films into said machine together with a base material, but at a higher speed than said base material, whereby film elements, split from said film, are concentrated longitudinally on said base material.
8. A method as defined in claim 7, including the steps of e. forming said concentrated film elements into pile tufts by pile sinking motions performed directly after said splitting of the film;
f. drawing the tufts into said base material by knitting in said machine; and
g. binding them into chain stitches or wales on the back side of the base material.
9. A method as defined in claim 7, including the steps of forming said concentrated film elements into pile tufts and fixing the pile tufts to said base material by binding separate stitching yarn into chain stitches or wales while the splitting, forming and binding proceeds.
10. A method as defined in claim 8, including the step of cutting said pile tufts, on said machine, directly after said forming, sinking and binding.
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