Magazine July 2018

The textile world at a glance: From sustainable products to processes

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General recommendations and specific advice

Sewing machine needles are the unsung heroes of everyday sewing. You can hardly see or hear them, but they still provide long-lasting high performance. When a wide variety of materials and sewing threads are processed at ever higher machine speeds, the needle has a decisive influence on the design and longevity of textile products.
But using high-quality sewing machine needles does not guarantee high process reliability alone. Oftentimes, problems in application occur upon which the needle has no or very influence. These problems can usually be solved with simple measures. If these are not enough, the sewing experts from the Groz-Beckert sewing labs are happy to provide tips on perfect solutions for specific problems and sewing procedures.

Material damage

Just an imageExample of material damage to knitwear after sewing

One of the most common problems is that the material to be sewn is damaged during the sewing process. This makes using the correct needle size so important: The smaller the diameter of the needle, the lower the penetrating forces acting on the material. Thus, a smaller needle size reduces the risk of damaging the material.

In addition to the correct needle size, the use of the correct point style has a considerable influence on reducing material damage. This damage can be avoided or reduced by the use of a ball point (FFG or FG).

Moreover, additional factors, such as damage to the needle point or needle surface (through wear), can be responsible for material damage. From the perspective of the sewing machine, a damaged feeder or throat plate can negatively affect the quality of the finished product. Also, sewing at too high a speed can cause material damage.

The quality of the fabric is of considerable importance: If the fabric is poorly finished or classified as critical to be sewn, material damage often occurs during the sewing process.

Thread breakage

Thread breaks or tears are another central problem of the sewing process. The thread quality has a large influence on this. Additionally, problems in taking the thread down from the bobbin or a damaged thread bobbin can be responsible for this. The quality of the needle, in particular the needle eye, play a large role with respect to thread breakage.

Just an imageIncreased risk of thread breakage due to lower needle quality

Just an imageMinimized risk of thread breakage with Groz-Beckert products due to high-quality needles

If the needle size is too low compared to the thread size used, the thread will not guide through the needle eye unaided. This can also result in thread tears. Other causes of yarn breakage/tearing is the simple fact that the thread has been threaded incorrectly or the needle has been inserted incorrectly into the machine.
The sewing thread and needle size are correctly matched if the needle slides freely down the thread.

Skipped stitches

Skipped stitches occur when the loop created by the thread is not picked up by the hook. This is primarily caused by the machine setting (especially the position of the hook) or the fact that the needle geometry cannot create a perfect loop. Additionally, a bent or strongly warped needle, due to low needle stability, increases the risk of skipped stitches.
Optimal yarn tension and correct sewing speed are critical for the best possible stitch formation.

Needle breakage

If thicker materials or multiple layers are to be sewn, this often results in needle breakage. This problem usually occurs when the needle chosen is too thin, meaning the needle does not provide sufficient stability.

Needle breakage is also caused by incorrect machine settings, thread tension that is too high, or excessive sewing speeds. Using incorrect sewing systems can also result in needle breakage.

Global support for individual application problems

Other problems of the sewing process include overheating of the needle as well as various types of seam puckering. The general recommendations provided will not solve these and other specific sewing problems. This is where Groz-Beckert's sewing and joining service comes into play: The global sewing technical centers house comprehensive expertise in all areas of the sewing industry. These service centers are equipped with extensive machinery and benefit from excellent networking and communication between one another. There, experts in application technology work out problem solutions in various service packages with different inspection and evaluation protocols.

Moreover, the Groz-Beckert sewing lab provides material analysis and needle recommendations. Before a material to be sewn can go into production, these experts examine its ability to be sewn and potential problems. This enables them to recommend the best possible needle in order to ensure process reliability from the very beginning.

We currently offer sewing and joining services at our locations in Germany, India, Vietnam, Indonesia, China, and Turkey. You can find contact information and the services they offer on our data sheet on our sewing and joining services.

Just an imageView of the machinery at the Groz-Beckert Vietnam Service Center

New service center in Vietnam

The service center at Groz-Beckert's Vietnam location was recently renovated and expanded. The new sewing lab has a size of almost 100 m² and various sewing machines for all areas of applications, multiple testing machines, and a training line for INH quality management. A total of three of the five employees of the service center are working permanently on solving application problems in the sewing industry and optimizing sewing processes.

In addition to application advice, the service center in Vietnam also provides various training programs. There, Groz-Beckert trains internal employees and customers, for instance end users, trademark owners, and machine and yarn manufacturers, on topics of sewing machine needles and sewing in general. Handling sewing machines and their functions as well as comprehensive information on the INH Quality Management system are also a component of the training program.

Always on your side

We strive to fully support you, as a Groz-Beckert customer: before, during, and after the production process. Our technical application advice solves sewing problems directly or avoids them entirely from the start. This is why the sewing experts at Groz-Beckert are always available to help if you have questions about individual areas of sewing technology, or if you would like to seek professional application advice on sewing and joining technology.

  • Did you know this?

    A sewing machine needle stitches up to 10,000 times per minutes into the material to be sewn. In other words, up to 10,000 stitches are created per minute. Preventing skipped stitches is the first priority. Loop Control® needles from Groz-Beckert guarantee perfect loops due to their innovative needle geometry, thus creating optimal stitches.