Top performance in the production of terry fabrics

Release of the new HKS 4 F with a specific performance profile in January 2007

(PresseBox) ( Obertshausen, )
Warp-knitted terry fabrics can be used for absorbing liquids and for wiping and drying sur-faces. They are also attractive, and are a vital element of every bathroom and kitchen in the modern home.

Because they play such a major role in generating turnover, manufacturers are constantly striving to improve the production of these fabrics. They are helped in these efforts by the machine builders, and in particular KARL MAYER. This market and technology leader launched the HKS 4 FB(Z) high-speed tricot machine onto the market some time ago. This has proved itself time and time again over the years, and was modified at the beginning of 2006 to take into account the changing needs of the market. The speed of the new model, known as the HKS 4 F, was up to 74 % higher than its predecessor, yet it was 25 % cheaper and cost less to run. The old HKS 4 FB(Z) was withdrawn from the production programme on 1 January 2007.

The improved HKS 4 F has undergone extensive tests in the last few months, and its performance specifications have been defined. The result is a highly efficient production machine for producing terry fabrics from filament yarns at top speeds. This high-speed machine, which is based on the old HKS 4, is available as standard with gauges E 24 and E 28 and in working widths of 136", 186" and 218". Other gauges are available on request. Depending on its specifications, the machine can operate at speeds of up to 1400 rpm with no problems at all.

Certain features of the terry machine have also been changed. The brushing unit, which used to be available, has now been removed from the machine, a step which has paved the way for using new techniques for raising and processing the pile loops. On the previous mo-del, this process was carried out by teasing or brushing clothing, which meant that all the brushing parameters had to be adapted on the machine when processing different types of filament yarns. There was also a risk that the fabric would have an uneven appearance as a result of poorly brushed loops or hairier loop surfaces caused by broken filaments. In the search for alternative solutions, the cooperation between KARL MAYER and Xetma Vollenweider yielded some very encouraging results. This Aue-based company specialises in the mechanical surface treatment of textiles, and manufactures a range of equipment - from sheering systems to polishing units.

During the course of extensive trials, the Optima XPS polishing cylinder proved to be the most suitable for processing this type of terry fabric made from filament yarns. It consists of four spiral grooves, which may optionally be fitted with beater strips, IR heating elements, and a control system for setting the contact pressure and depth of the polishing cylinder in relation to the polishing table.

The terry fabric is pressed against the grooved roller by a felt blanket and passes over its surface by means of translational velocity, which is lower than the rotational velocity. This different causes the fabric to be beaten and the pile loops to be erected. This effect can be easily modified to suit a wide range of fabric types by adjusting the velocity differential and the contact area between the textile and the polishing cylinder.

The result is a dense, uniform fabric with terry or pile loops protruding straight out from the ground fabric. Another advantage of using the polishing unit is that the processing efficiency is increased.

Since these are usually combined with shearing heads in one machine, the shearing process can be incorporated directly and the whole process can be speeded up.

The advantage of carrying out a separate aftertreatment is that the fabric can be collected from a number of machines and processed together on the appropriate finishing line. This rules out any irregularities caused by the different conditions of the brushing units on the in-dividual high-speed tricot machines, and higher processing rates can be achieved.

These advantages have all been available as standard since January of this year. This terry machine, with its versatile performance profile, has been mass-produced since 1 January 2007, and the first machines are already operating in the plants of various customers world-wide.
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