Design and development of a novel circular warp knitting machine

This paper reports the design, manufacture and test of an innovative method of producing warp knitting fabrics, using a circular disposition of the needles rather than linear needle bars. By using the novel truncated-cone needle-bed concept instead of a cylindrical one, the needles slide simultaneously in radial and vertical directions to combine the reciprocating and swinging motions into one. Initially a mechanical prototype machine was designed, built and successfully tested to prove the knitting mechanism and its interaction with the patterning rings. The second prototype has a mechatronic patterning mechanism, hence increasing the patterning capabilities significantly, and enabling changing fabric pattern change during knitting without requiring long machine stoppages and cam changes.