US 2997952 A
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1961 s. HORROCKS ET AL 2,997,952
APPARATUS FOR PRINTING PILE FABRICS 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 Filed Dec. 9, 1958 INVENTOR Sam Her-rocks +WiH|am fiFarrer ATTORNEY 1961 4 s. HORROCKS ETA]. 2,997,952
APPARATUS FOR PRINTING PILE FABRICS Filed Dec. 9, 1958 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 ATTORNEY United States Patent Ofice Patented Aug. 29, 1961 2,997,952 APPARATUS FOR PRINTING PILE FABRICS Sam Horrocks, Woodlea, Woodland Ave., and
Greenhalgh Farrer, Half Acre, Green Lane, Todmorden Road, both of Bacup, England Filed Dec. 9, 1958, Ser. No. 779,154 Claims priority, application Great Britain Dec. 12, 1957 9 Claims. (Cl. 101-181) invention relates to the printing of; fabrics particularly (though not exclusively) tufted fabrics such as carpets.
It has not hitherto been found feasible to apply rotary printing methods to pile fabrics owing to he depth of penetration required, and previous experiments in the printing of tufted carpeting and like deep-piled fabrics have been confined to the use of a screen and a highpressure gun whereby dye is blown through the apertures of such screen in atomized condition.
The object of the present invention is to provide alternative apparatus whereby the printing of pile fabrics can be carried out at least as effectively, and much more quickly and cheaply, without any limitation as to the width of fabric which can conveniently be handled.
According to this invention, apparatus for the printing of fabrics, and particularly of pile fabrics comprises a roller with a covering of absorbent material which may or may not be confined to, or omitted at, defined areas collectively representing at least one complete repeat of the desired pattern, means for maintaining such absorbent covering uniformly charged with dye, and means whereby the fabric is continuously advanced whilst held in contact with the absorbent covering on said roller.
Such covering is conveniently charged by adjustable immersion thereof in a supply of dye contained in a reservoir which has means for maintaining the dye at a constant level therein, whilst pressing of the fabric against the printing roller may be effected by means of a second roller which may be common to two printing rollers acting upon the same side of the fabric.
In the accompanying drawings:
FIG. 1 is a schematic sectional front elevation of one form of printing apparatus according to the present invention,
FIG. 2 is a sectional side elevation of the apparatus showing a fabric in course of being printed thereby, and
FIG. 3 is a view corresponding to FIG. 2 but showing a modified apparatus.
In the example illustrated in FIGS. 1 and 2, the printing roller A is provided with a covering B of a suitable absorbent material such as felt, this covering having a thickness of (say) /a inch and being continuous except for certain cut-out areas indicated at C, which collectively represent at least one complete repeat of the pattern to be printed.
This roller A, which may have suitable driving means D at one end thereof, is mounted above a reservoir E divided by a longitudinal baflie F into two intercornmurnicating compartments E E Dye is pumped through a pipe G into the compartment E passes therefrom to the larger compartment E beneath the roller A, and escapes at each end of such compartment over a weir H into a pocket I having a drain I to a sump K.
In this way the dye is maintained at a constant level in the compartment E irrespective of its rate of delivery, the overflow collected in the sump K being pumped back to the compartment E The absorbent covering B of the roller A dips beneath the dye surface in the compartment E to an extent detenmined by suitable adjustment means, such as racks L depending from the reservoir E and engaged by pinions M on a manually-operable shaft N.
The peripheral covering B of the roller A projects slightly beyond the adjacent edge of the reservoir B so as. to engage the pile face of a fabric 0 which is advanced upwards or downwards past the roller A with its back P engaging a second roller Q at the same level.
For the purpose of illustration the fabric 0 (which may be a web of tufted carpeting) is shown passing to and from the rollers A, Q around guide rollers R or the equivalent, but it will be understood that one or more. other pairs of rollers corresponding to A, Q may be associated with the printing run of the fabric 0 to apply other colours thereto.
For example, in a pattern consisting of light-coloured leaves upon a darker backg ound, the latter will normally be printed first by a roller covering similar to that shown at B but having the cut-outs C with loaf-shaped profiles.- From this first stage of the printing operation the fabbric 0 passes to a second roller similar to A but having its absorbent covering confined to certain areas thereof in the form of leaf-shaped pads which are charged with a lighter colour and make accurate registry with the complementary unprinted areas of the fabric. If desired, the. second roller may print certain of such areas only, the remainder being dealt with by one or more further printing rollers charged with dilierent colours.
In the final printing stage, the veins or other features of the leaves already represented may be applied to the previously printed areas of the fabric by a roller or rollers charged with a darker colour or colours and having cutouts of appropriate shape and position.
In certain cases, it may be desirable to reverse the order in which the colours are applied to the fabric; for example, the lightest colour included in the pattern may be printed over the whole surface of the fabric by means of a roller having a complete absorbent covering, the pattern being then built up by successive rollers having cutout coverings or absorbent pads which over-print progressively darker colours on the light background.
In the modified arrangement shown in FIG. 3, the overdimensions of the apparatus are reduced by disposing one of the guide rollers R so that the fabric 0 is led down behind the back roller Q with its pile face in contact with a second printing roller A which may be disposed at the same level as the roller A but has independent means for charging the absorbent covering B thereof with dye.
In any case where a successive of roller pairs corresponding to A, Q is employed, alternate printing rollers may be arranged to operate on opposite sides of the fabric provided that the latter has not already been coated with rubber or other impervious material.
Whilst the printing apparatus hereinbefore described is primarily intended for use with tufted or other pile fabrics, it may also be employed for the simultaneous printing of several lighter fabrics whose aggregate thickness when superimposed does not exceed the maximum depth of pile which the machine is designed to handle.
1. Apparatus for printing of fabrics, particularly of pile fabrics, comprising a reservoir for a dye solution, means for maintaining said solution at a constant level, a printing roller on a substantially horizontal axis, a covering on said roller of absorbent material, said covering contacting and said roller being above the surface of said solution, said surface being aproxirnately tangential to said covering, said absorbent having cutout portions forming a printing pattern, a plurality of guide rollers, said fabric adapted to pass over said rollers, a backing roller adjacent to and on approximately the same level as said printing roller, said fabric adapted to pass substantially vertically between said printing and backing rollers.
2. Apparatus according to claim 1, further characterized in that the absorbent covering is charged by adjustable immersion thereof in a supply of dye contained in a reservoir which has means for maintaining the dye at a constant level therein.
3. Apparatus accordingto claim 2, further characterized in that said reservoir is divided into intercommunieating feed and working compartments, the latter having at least one weir which permits overflow of excess dye to a sump for re-use.
4. Apparatus according to claim 2, further characterized in that the depth of immersion of the roller covering in the dye is controlled by a manually-operable pinion engaging a rack on the reservoir.
5. Apparatus according to claim 1, further characterized in that two absorbent-covered rollers for successive printing stages are applied to the same side of the fabric and co-operate with a single interposed pressure roller.
4 background colour is printed over the whole surface of the fabric by means of a roller having a complete ab sorbent covering, a different colour being then overprinted by a roller whose absorbent covering has cut-outs adapted to produce at least part of the desiredpattern.
8. Apparatus according to claim 1, further characterized in that a batlle extends under said surface and short of the bottom of said reservoir dividing the same into two compartments, in one of which said printing roller is mounted, and means for introducing dye solution into the second compartment.
9. Apparatus according to claim 1, further characterized in that that portion of said covering which contacts 6. Apparatus according to claim 1 and arranged so with a difierent colour so that, on registry with the areas left unprinted by the first roller, they produce at least part of the desired pattern.
7. Apparatus according to claim 1, arranged so that a said fabric projects slightly beyond the adjacent edge of said reservoir.
References Cited iii-the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS