Supply Chain Consultants, Manufacturers, Converters and Distributors of Thermal, Industrial and Technical Textiles.

Weave Patterns. Do they matter?

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Textile Technologies Europe Ltd explore weave patterns and their importance.

The choice of E Glass fabric for thermal or composite applications are determined by considering the following variables:

  1. Weight: often expressed in grams per metre squared.
  2. Yarn Type: Whether continuous filament or textured.
  3. Yarn Finish: Whether for thermal applications or composite. The latter requiring special finishes to promote the absorption of resins into the glass substrate.
  4. Weave Pattern.

Weave patterns are important because each one exhibits unique characteristics which can influence further processing requirements like lamination or polymer coating; as well as application requirements like tensile strength, drapeability and conformability.

Many weave patterns exist including Plain, Basket, and Satin for thermal applications; Uni Directional for composite applications; and leno weaves for construction reinforcement applications.

What is weaving?

The weaving machine, aka loom, interlaces the warp and filling yarns (the weft) according to a weave pattern to form a fabric structure.

The yarn system in the longitudinal direction of the fabric is called the warp and is supplied to the loom by beam or from creel. Warp yarns are often called ends.

The yarns crossing the warp are referred to as weft or filling yarn. These yarns are fed into the fabric by a controlled weft feeder.

According to St Gobain Vetrotex, a leading European producer of E Glass yarns; the weaving process is made up of five basic mechanisms:

  • Mechanism 1: The let-off-Motion distributes the warp to the loom.
  • Mechanism 2: A warp shedding mechanism moves the warp yarn up and down according to the weave pattern.
  • Mechanism 3: A filling insertion system introduces the filling between the openings of the warp yarns, carried out by the shedding mechanism. Filling glass products are basically inserted using modern picking systems: Air jet, Rapier, Projectiles, or Needle (loom for narrow fabrics).
  • Mechanism 4: A reed moved by the beat-up Motion beats the filling between the warp yarns against the fabric in formation.
  • Mechanism 5: A fabric take-up regulates the filling density and the fabric is wound onto a tube on the loom or with a separate winding.

The video below is an excellent demonstration of shuttle loom weaving. Whilst one of the oldest weaving technologies it shows how the warp yarns are fed to the loom by beam, the shedding mechanism, the weft insertion process (by shuttle in this instance) and the reed beat up mechanism to form the fabric.


Weave Patterns


Plain

A plain weave (sometimes referred to as a basic weave) is where each weft yarn alternates over and under each warp yarn, creating a simple, balanced (basic) structure. This results in a strong and durable fabric with good stability.

Common loomstate fabrics which utilise a plain weave include 200gm E Glass Fabrics as well as 600gm+ Textured Glass Fabrics.



Satin

Satin weave produces a smooth and lustrous surface due to long floats (long sections of weft or warp threads not interlaced). This weave provides excellent flexibility but may sacrifice some of the fabric’s inherent strength as a result.

Common loomstate fabrics which utilise a satin weave include 400gm, 660gm, 860gm continuous filament E Glass Fabrics.



Twill

Twill weave creates a diagonal pattern on the fabric. This pattern enhances fabric drapability and flexibility while maintaining good strength. Common twill styles include 2/2 twill (2 over, 2 under) and 3/1 twill (3 over, 1 under).

Common loomstate fabrics which utilise a twill weave include 400gm, 660gm, 860gm continuous filament E Glass Fabrics and some textured glass fabrics.  


Square Weave

Square weave (also called Basket Weave) features a distinctive pattern that results in exceptional durability and stability. This balanced weave offers both strength and flexibility, making it ideal for diverse industrial uses. Its unique yarn arrangement enhances resilience, rendering it a versatile option for crafting technical textiles.

Common loomstate fabrics which utilise a square weave include 600gm and 800gm continuous filament E Glass Fabrics for lightweight welding blankets.


Conclusion

Weaving industrial glass fabrics entails skillfully arranging warp and weft threads. This meticulous process results in textiles boasting exceptional strength, heat resistance, and remarkable versatility. By selecting specific weaving patterns Textile Technologies can tailor the materials properties to meet the demands of various industrial applications. These fabrics play a crucial role across diverse industries, offering solutions for thermal and composite applications.

 For further technical insight or help choosing the right weave pattern for your application, please contact Textile Technologies.

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  • Tracy Barker