What is Loom | Define Loom | Shuttle Loom | Shuttle less loom | Modern Loom | Classification of Modern Loom | Projectile Loom | Rapier Loom | Water Jet Loom | Air Jet Loom | Circular Loom

An apparatus for making fabric by weaving yarn or thread. A loom is a device used to weave cloth. The basic purpose of any loom is to hold the warp threads under tension to facilitate the interweaving of the weft threads. The precise shape of the loom and its mechanics may vary, but the basic function is the same.
Shuttle Loom: 
The shuttle loom is the oldest type of weaving loom which uses a shuttle which contains a bobbin of filling yarn that appears through a hole situated in the side. The shuttle is batted across the loom and during this process, it leaves a trail of the filling at the rate of about 110 to 225 picks per minute (ppm). Although very effective and versatile, the shuttle looms are slow and noisy. Also the shuttle sometimes leads to abrasion on the warp yarns and at other times causes thread breaks. As a result the machine has to be stopped for tying the broken yarns.

Classification of Modern Loom:
Shuttle less loom: 
Many kinds of shuttle less looms are used for weaving such as Projectile Looms; Rapier Looms; Water Jet Looms; and Air Jet Looms.

Projectile Loom
It is sometimes called missile loom as the picking action is done by a series of small bullet like projectiles which hold the weft yarn and carry it through the shed and then return empty. All the filling yarns are inserted from the same side of the loom. A special tucking device holds the ends of the wefts in place at the edge of the cloth to form the selvage. This loom needs smooth, uniform yarn which is properly sized in order to reduce friction. Projectile loom can produce up to 300 ppm and is less noisier then the shuttle loom.

Rapier Loom: 
Rapier loom comes in many types. Early models of it use one long rapier device that travels along the width of the loom to carry the weft from one side to the other. Another type of rapier loom has two rapiers, one on each side of the loom. They may be rigid, flexible or telescopic. One rapier feeds the weft halfway through the sheds of warp yarns to the arm on the other side, which reaches in and carries it across the rest of the way. Rapier looms are very efficient and their speed ranges from 200 to 260 ppm. These looms can manufacture a variety of fabrics ranging from muslin fabric to drapery fabrics and even upholstery fabrics.

Water Jet Loom
In it, a pre measured length of weft yarn is carried across the loom by a jet of water. These looms are very fast with speeds up to 600 ppm and very low noise. Also they don't place much tension on the filling yarn. As the pick is tension less, very high quality of warp yarns are needed for efficient operation. Also, only yarns that are not readily absorbent can be used to make fabrics on water jet looms such as filament yarn of acetate, nylon, polyester, and glass. However, it can produce very high quality fabrics having great appearance and feel.

Air Jet Looms: 
In the air jet weaving looms, a jet of air is used to propel the weft yarn through the shed at speeds of up to 600 ppm. Uniform weft yarns are needed to make fabrics on this loom. Also heavier yarns are suitable for air jet looms as the lighter fabrics are very difficult to control through shed. However, too heavy yarns also can't be carried across the loom by air jet. In spite of these limitations, air jet loom can produce a wide variety of fabrics.

Circular Looms: 
These looms are particularly used for making tubular fabrics rather than flat fabrics. A shuttle device in it circulates the weft in a shed formed around the machine. A circular loom is primarily used for bagging material.

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Mazharul Islam Kiron is a textile consultant and researcher on online business promotion. He is working with one European textile machinery company as a country agent. He is also a contributor of Wikipedia.

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