The Fork Needle
Fork needles are used to produce loop and velour structured needlepunched carpeting and other textured surface nonwovens from pre-needled fiber webs. These webs are fed through what is called a structuring loom. Fibers become engaged in the fork section of the needle as it penetrates the pre-needled batt. Figure 12 shows a typical Fork needle opening. Depending on the orientation of the Fork needles, a rib or velour effect is produced. Commercial floor covering, automotive carpeting, wall covering and artificial fleece are some of the textured surface nonwovens manufactured with Forked needles.
Figure 12: The Fork Needle
Typically, Fork needles come in three different body styles: single reduced, double reduced, and double reduced conical. The tapered cone shape of the conical fork needle adds a great deal of stability to the Fork needles blade. This results in a considerable reduction in needle breakage. The Conical Fork needle is useful on high speed structuring looms where increased fabric throughput may result in increased needle breakage.
Figure 13 shows the three common Fork needle body styles.
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