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Weaving Trials as a Customer Support Measure

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MARCEL EMCH SULZER RUTI

New types of fabrics and fabric constructions can only be developed efficiently outside the production facility and with an appropriate machine inventory. The Sulzer Ruti Customer Trial Weaving and Development Facility exists to help solve weaving problems of this kind. Customers can also test machines at the facility as a basis for capital goods investment decisions.
1I Sulzer Rutis Customer Trial Weaving and Development Facility is housed in a modern, purpose-built building.

The machine inventory of a modern weaving facility is geared to economic production of a particular range of fabrics. From time to time, new fabrics have to be developed, for instance to meet new demands in industry or the fashion trade, or from new yarns or man-made fibres. And it may be that the machines suitable for the task arent installed or cant be taken out of production. In situations like this, Sulzer Ruti can help customers, potential customers, and yarn manufacturers via its Technology Centre in Ruti, Switzerland. At this centre, weaving machines with projectile, rapier

and air-jet weft insertion systems, and with a wide variety of different equipment are available to help solve weaving problems.

THEORY AND PRACTICE UNDER ONE ROOF


The Technology Centre covers all technological aspects of weaving, thus ensuring rapid knowledge transfer between R&D and application. A modern facility specifically designed for weaving trials, with an enclosed space of 56 000 m3 and a gross floor area of about 8000 m2 is available for this purpose. The building is subdivided into four weaving rooms, each with a floor

area of 600 m2 and a basement below. Between them is a threefloor service block with the necessary infrastructure (Fig. 1I). Utilization of the overall area of the weaving rooms is divided equally between weaving trials for Sulzer Ruti customers and the Weaving Development Centre. The weaving rooms are fully airconditioned, to meet climatic requirements for processing natural or synthetic fibres. Each room has space for about 15 weaving machines with various weaving widths and weft insertion systems (Fig. 2I). The service block houses the air

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2I Weaving room in the Customer Trial Weaving Facility for staple fibre yarns.

conditioning plants, the weaving preparatory department, the warp beam store (Fig. 3I), the central vacuum system for keeping the weaving machines clean, the loomstate fabric inspection department, the textile laboratory and other ancillary rooms. In the basement rooms beneath the weaving rooms, there are various stores and trial workshops.

HELPING CUSTOMERS TO DECIDE


To stay competitive, weavers have to prepare their investment decisions thoroughly. The following questions often arise in connection with the purchase of new machines: What are the yarns characteristics during high-speed weaving? How good is the quality of a tried-and-tested fabric like with a different weaving system? At the Customer Trial Weaving Facility, weaving specialists and the latest weaving machines are on hand to answer these questions. Depending on the problem, a weaving or weft insertion trial may be necessary. If a new fabric has to be developed or an overall evaluation of production of a particular fabric is

required, the necessary warp and weft yarn is usually supplied by the customer. At the Customer Trial Weaving Facility, a weaving machine is set up and optimally adjusted on the basis of the applicable technological criteria and in accordance with the customer s fabric data (Fig. 4I). During the weaving trial, all process-relevant parameters, such as the machine setting or warp and weft yarn breaks, are recorded and analyzed. The running performance in industrial production can be predicted fairly reliably from these data. Subsequently, the trial fabric is finished (dyed, printed, made up) and tested in its intended application. Weft insertion trials are frequently requested. The purpose of these trials is to establish the probable frequency of weft stoppages and the weavability of the yarn on the type of weaving machine in question.

3I Stored in paternosters, customers warp beams are protected against risk of damage.

4I Multi-layer special fabric developed jointly by Sulzer Ruti and a customer.

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5I As no new process can be developed to market maturity with a single prototype, several machines are installed in the Weaving Development Centre for trials. This photo shows the M8300 multi-phase weaving machine.

PRODUCTION TESTING OF NEW YARNS


Development of new man-made fibres and new types of yarn is only complete when it has been ensured that the yarn can be woven on high-speed machines and has the properties expected of it. Sulzer Ruti collaborates with all leading manufacturers of synthetic fibre and yarns, putting machines and specialist personnel at their disposal for weaving trials. Both the yarn manufacturers and Sulzer Ruti benefit, because both can pass on the know-how needed to weave the new yarns to their customers.

wide variety of yarns and in the construction of different fabrics. An extensive collection of fabric patterns has thus been built up, with the corresponding setting and production data, documenting the broad range of applications of the various weaving machine types manufactured by Sulzer Ruti.

air-jet and multi-phase weaving machines (Fig. 5I). Collaborating with the measuring and control engineering department, a wide variety of machine components are tested with regard to the stresses to which they are subjected, and motion sequences in complex processes are measured and evaluated (Fig. 6I).

MACHINE DEVELOPMENT IN DETAIL


The Weaving Development Centre, which is also housed in the Technology Centre, is used primarily to test the suitability of components, complete assemblies, and prototypes for the uncompromising conditions of everyday weaving. In this section of the Technology Centre, which is not open to visitors, intensive ongoing development is carried out on projectile, rapier,

BASIS OF PARTNERSHIP
With its Customer Trial Weaving and Development Facility, Sulzer Ruti provides a valuable and unique service for its customers and yarn manufacturers. Open dialogue in a spirit of partnership makes it easier to identify customers needs. These are then taken into account in development, together with the latest knowledge in textile technology. On the basis of the trial results, the customer knows exactly what performance can be expected from a particular machine, and can thus decide with confidence which machine to invest in.

ABUNDANT EXPERIENCE
With some 50 weaving trials and 200 to 300 weft insertion trials a year, a great deal of know-how is accumulated in the weaving of a

6I Precise data from existing machines play a key role in the development of new weaving machines.

FOR MORE DETAILS


Sulzer Ruti AG Ren Knig, 9018 CH-9630 Ruti Switzerland Telephone +41 (0)55-250 24 65 Fax +41 (0)55-250 21 71 E-mail rene.koenig@sulzer.ch

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