Knitting fabric has been around for centuries, but the use of knitting machines has revolutionized the labor-intensive process of creating beautiful and intricate fabrics. It is essential for the textile industry to know the science behind the knitting machine, from its history to its current uses today, and discuss how technological advances have made it possible to produce fabrics with amazing accuracy and speed.
How Does a Knitting Machine Work
A knitting machine is a device used to create flat or tubular fabric from yarn or thread. Knitting machines can range from simple hand-operated devices to sophisticated computerized industrial machines. In general, there are three types of knitting machines: flat bed, circular, and hosiery.
Flat bed machines are the most common type of knitting machine. They are typically used to make sweaters, afghans, and other garments that do not require shaped pieces such as sleeves or leggings. Flat bed machines have two sets of needles: one set is mounted in a fixed position, while the other set is mounted on a carriage that moves back and forth across the bed. The knitter selects the desired stitch pattern and uses the carriage to control which needles are active at any given time.
Circular knitting machines are used to knit cylindrical shapes such as socks, hats, and sweaters with sleeves. Circular knitting machines have several sets of needles mounted on a rotating cylinder. The number of sets of needles can vary depending on the machine; some commercial circular knitting machines have over 100 sets of needles! The knitter inputsthe desired stitch pattern and tension into the machine, and then the machine does the rest. These types of machines are often used in factories where high volumes of identical garments need to be produced quickly and efficiently. Hosiery knitting machines are specialized circular knitting machines that are used to create seamless garments.
When it comes to fabric, there are 2 main types: woven and knit.
Woven fabrics are made by interlacing threads at right angles to one another, while knit fabrics are created by looping yarns together in a series of connected stitches. Knitting fabric is made on a knitting machine, which consists of a bed of needles that the yarn is fed through. The needles create the stitches, which can be either straight or crossed, depending on the type of fabric being created.
There are 2 main types of knitting machines: hand-operated and computerized. Hand-operated machines are typically only used for small projects, as they require the user to manually control the needles. Computerized knitting machines are much larger and can produce large pieces of fabric quickly and efficiently.
The benefits of knitting fabric include its stretchiness and flexibility. Unlike woven fabrics, knit fabrics have some give to them, which makes them ideal for garments like sweaters and socks. They also tend to be more breathable than woven fabrics, making them more comfortable to wear in warmer weather.
Why Use Knitting Fabric
There are many reasons to use knitting fabric. It is strong and durable, yet flexible and comfortable. It is easy to care for and can be made in a variety of colors and patterns.
Knitting fabric is also ideal for garments that are meant to be form-fitting, such as swimwear, leggings, or underwear. The stretchy nature of the fabric allows it to hug the body without being constricting.
Finally, knitting fabric is relatively inexpensive. While it may not be the cheapest option available, it is still a cost-effective choice for many projects.
How to Make Knitting Fabric
If you want to make your own knitting fabric, there are a few things you'll need to get started. First, you'll need a knitting machine. You can find these at most craft stores, or online. Second, you'll need some yarn. Again, any craft store will have a good selection, or you can order online. Third, you'll need a pattern. There are many free patterns available online, or you can purchase them from a knitting magazine. Finally, you'll need some patience!
Once you have all of your supplies, it's time to get started. First, wind your yarn onto the yarn tube of your knitting machine. Then, thread the yarn through the needles and begin to knit following your chosen pattern. It may take a few tries to get the hang of it, but once you do you'll be able to churn out-knit fabric in no time!
3 Types of Knitting Fabric
There are 3 types of knitting fabrics: weft-knit, warp-knit, and lace.
1. Weft-knit Fabric
Weft-knit fabrics are the most common type of knit fabric. The yarns are interlooped in a horizontal direction, and the fabric has a lot of give or stretch. This type of fabric is often used for sweaters, t-shirts, and sportswear.
2. Warp-knit Fabrics
Warp-knit fabrics are made with yarns that are interlooped in a vertical direction. These fabrics have less give than weft-knit fabrics and are often used for swimwear, shape wear, and tricot linings.
3. Lace Fabrics
Lace Fabrics are made with an openwork design created by looping yarns around each other in a variety of ways. Lace fabrics can be either weft- or warp-knit; the main difference is in the appearance of the finished fabric. Weft-knit lace fabrics have a more “netlike” appearance, while warp-knit lace fabrics appear to have more defined stitches.