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Factors Affecting Defects in Plain-Weft Knitted Fabrics

due to Knots of Spun Yarns


By Ryuzo Oinuma, Member, TMSJ
Miyagi University of Education, Sendai, Japan
Based on the Journal of the Textile Machinery Society of Japan, Proceeding, Vol. 37, No. 8, P322-P327 (1984-8)
Abstract
The effects of some factors on the defect in plain-weft knitting due to knots are investigated in detail, using a
cotton yam and a worsted yarn. The results obtained are as follows:
(1) The knitting defect due to the knot is almost the knitting hole caused by the end breakage in plain-weft knitting
zone. The end breakage occurs near the knot on the take-down side.
(2) The end breakage rate increases together with the increase of the depth of stitch draw, the input tension, the
take-down weight, the machine gauge, the coefficient of yarn friction, the step length of cam, and the machine
speed. But the increase of the cam angle decreases the end breakage rate.
1. Introduction
End breakages and yarn faults such as slubs and neps cause
70% of all the defects of circular knitted fabrics made of spun
yarnst''. Since slubs and neps disgrade the knitting efficiency
and the quality of knitted fabrics, these are removed beforehand
and replaced by knots in winding [2,3]. Bissmannt4' shows that the
number of knots made in winding process reaches 19-44 in a cone
(net weight: 1.5 kg).
Although the size of knitting defect due to a knot is smaller
than that due to a yarn fault, the knot causes the end breakage in
knitting and the machine stoppage . Therefore, in the weft
knitting of spun yams with many knots, the end breakage is a
serious problem in view of the knitting efficiency and the quality
of knitted fabrics . However, little work has been reported
on this subject in plain-weft knitting.
This paper attempts to consider the mechanism of the end
breakage in plain-weft knitting due to the knot, and to investigate
the effects of some factors on the end breakage rate.
2. Experiment
Knitting yarns used were a worsted yam 2/72s metric count
(27.8 tex) and a combed cotton yarn 30 s/1 cotton count (19.7 tex).
Yarn was given about 500 weavers knots every 3 m by hand.
Each of knot tails was cut to about 3 mm and marked with light
color. Details of knitting yams are shown in Table 1.
The knitting machine used was a 6-feeder, 564-needle (18
gauge) or 696-needle (22 gauge), 10-in.-diameter circular rib
knitting machine with a positive-yarn-feeding device (IRO sys-
tem) and with a variable speed drive. To manufacture only the
plain-weft knitted fabric, the machine was stripped of all useless
parts (i. e. the dial, its support and the take-down mechanism) . To
Table 1 Details of knitting yarns.
ensure a constant take-down tension, a dead weight was tied to a
fabric. Dimensions of the knitting elements are shown in Table 2.
Table 2 Dimensions of knitting elements.
36
Journal of the Textile
Machinery Society of Japan
Knotted yam was fed to one feeder, and normal knitting yarns
were fed to other five feeders. Two identical sets of fabrics were
knitted under various knitting conditions as follows:
The depth of stitch draw was 1.4 mm (18 gauge) or 0.8 mm (22
gauge), the input tension 5.0 gf, the take-down weight 4000 g,
the cam angle 50, the step length of cam 3.20 mm and the ma-
chine speed 32 rpm. Knitting tests and measurements were
performed in a conditioned room (20C, 65%RH).
The numbers of marked knots (km) and the end breakages due
to them (ke) in each of sample fabrics were counted. The end
breakage rate (EBR) in plain-weft knitting zone due to marked
knots is the ratio of ke to km, and given as percentage by
EBR (%) = (ke/km) x 100 .......................(1)
Each of sample fabrics was raveled and the course lengths
were measured 20 times using a course length tester under 5 g
weight. The loop length is the value of the mean course length
divided by the number of cylinder needles.
3. Results and Discussion
3.1 Mechanism of end breakage due to knots
When knitting defects due to marked knots are checked, they
are almost holes caused by end breakages in plain-weft knitting
zone, and above 95% of them occurs near the knot on the take-
down side~s1. Thus, the mechanism of the end breakage in plain-
weft knitting zone due to the knot may be as follows:
Figure 1 shows that knots may stick to needles, verges, old
loops, or will jam the space between a needle-head and a verge.
The observation of slow drawing-in of a needle reveals that
(a) Knots turn in a direction vertical to a yarn axis so that these can
easily pass through gaps among needles, verges and old loops.
Therefore, knots scarcely stick to needles, verges and old loops.
(b) End breakages in plain-weft knitting zone due to knots seem
to occur in the following three steps:
(1) When the space between a needle-head and a verge becomes
narrower than the knot size, the knot jams this space as shown in
Fig. 1. This state keeps until the needle reaches the knitting point.
(2) As the yarn fed from the input side does not proceed into the
section mn in Fig. 1, the increase of the yarn length in mn caused
by the decent of the needle has to be supplied by yam elongation
and robbing-back. Therefore, the yarn tension in mn increases
rapidly with the decent of the needle in plain-weft knitting zone.
(3) When the yarn tension in mn becomes higher than the yarn's
breaking load, the end breakage occurs at any point in mn, that is,
near the knot on the take-down side.
3.2 Effect of stitch draw on EBR
The depth of stitch draw is represented by a vertical distance
between the upper surface of the verge and the knitting point as
shown in Fig. 1. Examination of Tables 3 and 4 reveal the follow-
ings:
(1) From Tables 3, 4 and 7, the loop length increases with the in-
crease of the depth of stitch draw at any constant input ten-
sion X101' rl l~
(2) For all yarns and machine gauges, EBR increases with the in-
crease of the depth of stitch draw. Wray and Burns t12~show that as
the depth of stitch draw is increased, the yarn force increases. If
the knot jams the space between a needle-head and the verge at
the position shown in Fig. 1, the yarn length required in mn in-
creases with the increase of the depth of stitch draw. Therefore,
the yarn tension in mn increases with the increase of the depth of
stitch draw.
(3) At any depth of stitch draw, EBR of a worsted yarn is always
more than EBR of a cotton yarn. This difference is probably due
Fig. 1 Diagram of the plain-weft knitting zone
B: Knitting point
BC: Step length of cam
Table 3 Effect of stitch draw on EBR (Input tension: 5.0 gf)
Cam angle: 50; Step length of cam; 3.20 mm;
Take-down weight: 4000 g; Machine speed: 32 rpm.
Table 4 Effect of stitch draw on EBR (Input tension:
10.0 gf)
.
Vol. 32, No
. 2
(1986)
37
to the knot size and the breakage load. It is seen from Table 1 that
the knot size of a worsted yarn is larger than that of a cotton yarn,
and the breaking load of a worsted yarn with knots is smaller than
that of a cotton yarn with knots.
3.3 Effect of input tension on EBR
The input tension is controlled by a positive-yam-feeding de-
vice, and is measured with a yarn tension meter having a strain
gauge. Examination of Table 5 reveals the followings:
Table 5 Effect of input tension on EBR.
(1) For all yarns and machine gauges, the loop length decreases
[10' with the increase of the input tension
. Knapton and Munden
show that the decrease of the loop length is probably due to the
yarn elongation and the robbing-back in knitting zone.
(2) For all yarns and machine gauges, EBR increases with the
increase of the input tension. Wray and Burns[121 show that, as the
input tension is increased, the yarn force increases. It seems the
yarn tension in mn increases with the increase of the input
tension.
(3) When the input tension is over 5.0 gf, EBR of a cotton yarn is
more than EBR of a worsted yarn, but this result is reversed at
2.5 gf. This is probably due to the differences in the breaking
elongations and the tensile moduli of both yarns (Table 1).
3.4 Effect of take-down weight on EBR
The take-down weight is controlled by a dead weight tied to a
fabric. Table 6 reveals the followings:
(1) The take-down weight has hardly any effect on the loop
length. Henshaw[11' shows that the take-down tension has vir-
tually no effect on the course length in case of a flat-bottom cam.
This result shows that the robbing-back occurs hardly.
(2) For all yarns and machine gauges, EBR increases with the
increase of the take-down weight. This is probably due to the
robbing-back, that is, the heavier the take-down weight, the less
the robbing-back.
(3) With the same machine gauge (18 gauge), EBR of a worsted
yarn is more than EBR of a cotton yam up to the take-down
weight of 4000 g. But this result is reversed beyond 5400 g. This
is probably due to the differences in the breaking elongations and
the tensile moduli of both yarns (Table 1).
3.5 Effect of machine gauge on EBR
When the machine gauge is changed from 18 to 22 gauges,
EBR at the depth of stitch draw of 1.4 mm increases from 13.3%
to 45.0% (input tension: 5.0 gf) or from 22.7% to 52.6% (input
tension: 10.0 gf), and the loop length decreases from 4.21 mm to
4.05 mm (input tension: 5.0 gf), or from 4.15 mm to 3.98 mm
(input tension: 10.0 gf) as shown in Tables 3 and 4. When the
machine gauge is increased from 18 to 22 gauges, the needle
Table 6
Effect of take-down weight on EBR.
Table 7 Effects of cam angle and coefficient of yarn friction on EBR
38
Journal of the Textile Machinery Socce t)? of Japan
spacing decreases from 1.42 mm to 1.15 mm (Table 2), and the
number of needles in knitting zone increases by about 1.23
(= 696/564) times. It seems that, in the case of 22 gauge, the knot
is apt to jam the space between a needle-head and the verge, and
the yarn tension in mn increases. Knapton and Mundent10' show
that the maximum knitting tension decreases with the decrease of
the number of needles in knitting zone.
3.6 Effects of cam angle and coefficient of yarn friction on
EBR
Examination of Table 7 reveals the followings:
(1) The cam angle has hardly any effect on the loop length.
(2) When the cam angle is changed from 50 to 56, for all depth
of stitch draw, EBR decreases. Knapton1131 shows that the maxi-
mum yarn knitting tension decreases with the increase of the cam
angle.
(3) For all depths of stitch draw, the loop length of the waxed
yarn is always longer than that of the unwaxed yarn as Nutting~141
suggests.
(4) At any depth of stitch draw, EBR of the waxed yarn is less
than EBR of the unwaxed yarn. Knapton and Munden~101 show
that the maximum knitting tension of the unwaxed yarn is larger
than that of the waxed yarn.
3.7 Effect of step length of cam on EBR
The loop length is kept at 4.21 mm by adjusting the depth of
stitch draw, which is set in another case at 1.6 mm. It is seen from
Table 8 that, in both constant cases, EBR increases with the in-
crease of step length of cam. Aisaka~15' shows that as the step
length of cam increases, the robbing-back decreases.
3.8 Effect of machine speed on EBR
The machine speed is controlled with a variable speed device.
The machine speed has hardly any effect on the loop length as
shown in Table 9. Henshaw~'1 shows that the machine speed has
hardly any effect on the course length. As the machine speed
increases, EBR increases. Wray and Burns1121, and Aisaka,
Kawakami and Sindo~161 show that the machine speed has hardly
any effect on the yarn tension (or yam force) in knitting zone.
It seems that the increase of EBR with the machine speed is
attributed to the following factors:
(1) The temporary increase of the depth of stitch draw due to the
inertia force on the needle after the knitting point.
(2) The increase of the take-down weight due to the centrifugal
force on the take-down weight caused by the machine speed.
4. Conclusion
(1) Knitting defects due to knots are almost knitting holes caused
by the end breakage in plain-weft knitting zone. Over 95% of
them occurs near the knot on the take-down side.
(2) The end breakage rate increases together with the increase of
the depth of stitch draw, the input tension, the take-down weight,
the step length of cam, and the machine speed.
(3) When the machine gauge is changed from 18 to 22 gauges,
the end breakage rate increases.
(4) When the cam angle is changed from 50 to 56, the end
breakage rate decreases.
(5) When the coefficient of yarn friction is changed from 0.39 to
0.30, the end breakage rate decreases.
Acknowledgement
The author would like to acknowledge the continuing guid-
ance and encouragement by Professors H. Ogawa and H. Takeda
of Faculty of Engineering, Yamagata University. The author also
would like to express his appreciation to Professor S. Watanabe
of Miyagi University of Education.
Table 8 Effect of step length of cam on EBR
Table 9 Effect of machine speed on EBR.
References
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Society of Japan, Osaka (1975).
[2] ' Meriyasu Gijutsu Hikkei (Yokoami Hen)'', p. 107, p.
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[4] 0. Bissmann; International Textile Bulletin (Weaving),
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[5] P. Mehta; Knit. Tim., 40, No. 19, 39 (1971).
[6] R. Oinuma; J. Text. Mach. Soc. Japan, 27, P105 (1974).
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[10] J. J. F. Knapton and D. L. Munden; Text. Res. J., 36,
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[11] D. W. Henshaw; Text. Res. J., 38, 592 (1968).
[121G. R. Wray and N. D. Burns; J. Text. Inst., 67,123 (1976).
[13] J. J. F. Knapton; Text. Res. J., 38, 914 (1968).
[14] T. S. Nutting; J. Text. Inst., 51, T190 (1960).
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Vol. 32, No. 2 (1986)
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