US 3250447 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
y 10, 966 s. H. LAREw 3,250,447
NEEDLE THREADING TOOL Filed June 19, 1964 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 INVENTOR SAMUEL H L AREW Y 746 w. W
May 10, 1966 s. H. LAREW 3,250,447
NEEDLE THREADING TOOL Filed June 19, 1964 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 INVENTOR SAMUEL H. LAREW BY gae v. film? United States Patent 3,256,447 NEEDLE THREADING TOOL Samuel H. Larew, Lexington, Va., assignor to James Lees and Sons Company, Bridgeport, Pa., a corporation of Delaware Filed June 19, 1964, Ser. No. 376,497 4 Claims. (Cl. 223-99) This invention relates to needle threading tools and more particularly to an improved needle and yarn guide threading tool useful for threading the needles of a soft floor covering tufting machine of the type shown in US. Patents 2,928,099, 2,976,829, and 2,991,738. More particularly the invention includes a forked thread or yarn pushing member having an offset or biased shank mounted in spaced relation to a yarn hook also having a biased shank, the relative dimensions and spacing of the hook and the fork being such that the machine operator can completely threads the needle with a single forward and backward motion of his hand.
In a tufting machine of the type described it is customary to have as many as 1200 to 1500 needles mounted in the needlebar on closely spaced centers which may be on the order of of an inch, Heretofore it has required considerable practice and dexterity to thread these needles expeditiously in the event of a broken yarn end because it is not convenient for the operator to reach underneath and behind the tips of the needles nor is it always easy to reach between the needles without snagging the adjacent yarn already properly threaded. Various types of threaders have been used for this purpose all of which have one or more serious disadvantages. The present invention comprises a yarn pushing element such as a fork and a yarn pulling element in the form of a hook mounted in the same handle in such a way that the machine operator can readily push the yarn through the eye of the needle from the front of the machine and on the return stroke of the handle pull the yarn from in back of the needle towards the front to complete the threading. In tufting machines of the type described the threading is further complicated because the needles are not mounted so that the eye faces directly to the front of the machine. They are always biased either to the right or to the left depending upon whether the loopers are forming cut or uncut pile. This fact renders it'important to permit the quickest possible replacement of a broken end by the operator under somewhat adverse conditions.
A primary object of the invention, therefore, is to provide a unitary tufting machine needle threader havingmeans for inserting the yarn through a biased needle from the front and sequentially pulling the loop so inserted around the side of the needle to draw the yarn end completely through the eye.
A further object of the invention is to provide in the same tool a yarn hook for threading the yarn guides of a tufting machine.
Further objects will be apparent from the specification and drawings in which FIGURE 1 is a perspective showing my improved needle and yarn guide threading tool,
FIGURE 2 is an exploded view showing the various parts of the threader of FIGURE 1,
FIGURE 3 is a view of a modified combination fork and hook with the shanks biased in the opposite direction from those shown in FIGURE 2,
FIGURES 4 to 7 show the sequential steps in the threading of a single needle, and
FIGURES 8 to 10 show the steps in the threading of a yarn guide on a tufting machine.
Referring more particularly to the drawings an improved threading tool constructed in accordance with the present invention comprises a handle which may if 3,25%,447 Patented May 10, 1966 preferred be made in two parts 15a and 15b held together by suitable glue or other retaining means. At one end of the handle I provide a yarn pushing fork 16 which protrudes from the handle and is secured therein by means of a shank 17 having a bend and reduced width at 18. Directly below the shank 17 I mount a yarn pulling hook 19 which has a biased or bent shank 20, the bend 21 in shank 20 being in the opposite direction from the bend 18 in shank 17. The length of shank 17 is somewhat shorter than the length of shank 20 so that the hook 19 will always be positioned behind the bight of the yarn or thread that is inserted through the eye 25 of needle 26 as shown clearly in FIGURE 5.
At the other end of the handle 15 I mount a yarn guide threading hook element 27 by means of an eye 29. The hook 27 has an arcuate shank 30 and may be esirably formed by means of a bent piece of spring wire.
Referring to the operation of the tool as shown more clearly in FIGURES 4 to 10 it will be understood that very often when an end breaks in the tufting operation not only does the needle 26 have to be rethreaded but the yarn guide in the jerker bar as well as one or more of the stationary yarn guides shown in FIGURE 10! of US. Patent 2,991,738 must also be reth readed. It is therefore of considerable importance to have a single threading tool by means of which the machine operator can in a minimum of down time rethread a broken yarn in any or all of the stationary and moving yarn guides as well as the needle. This means that the operator does not have to carry several different tools for this purpose and it also eliminates some of the very small threading devices previously used which because of their size are constantly lost or misplaced.
Starting with one of the yarn guide bars 35 which as noted above may be either a stationary or'a moving yarn guide it may be assumed that the yarn passing through the eye 36 of the guide has broken or that possibly the yarn supplypackage has run out before the creel attendant detected this condition. When a new yarn end has been threaded into the yarn guide from the creel or otherwise brought into position at the yarn guiding depending upon circumstances, a quick upward insertion of the hook 27 into the eye 36 as shown in FIGURE 9, enables the operator to draw the new yarn Y under the bill 37 of the hook and then quickly pull the hook downwardly through the eye as shown in FIGURE 10 to almost instantaneously thread the yarn through each of the yarn be pushed downwardly in the needle eye thus permitting the shank 20 to swing under the. needle from front to back as shown in FIGURE 5. By contacting the far side of needle tip with the shank 20 the operator is enabled to accurately guide the fork and yarn into the eye 25 and as soon as the fork has been clearly inserted into the eye a slight twist of the operators wrist permits the shank 20 to clear the tip 40 of the needle and on the withdrawing movement of the yarn threader the shank 20 is forced upwardly on the opposite side of the needle which assists in guiding the hook 19 into the loop 41 formed in the yarn Y. Continued retraction of the tool pulls the loop 41 to the opposite side of the needle and ultimately the tip 42 of the yarn is completely pulled through the eye thus completing the rethreading operation.
The above described operations are used in conjunction with the shanks 17 and 20 shown in FIGURE 1.
In the event that the needle 26 is biased in the opposite direction the bends or offsets in the shanks are formed in the opposite direction as shown in FIGURE 3 so that shank 17a has a reverse bend at 45 and shank 20a has compound reverse bends at 46 and 47. Since the needles in the tufting machine are normally all set in the same direction for a particular fabric it is only necessary to have one threading tool per machine.
It will be understood that with a minimum of practice the operator is able to thread the needle with my improved tool so quickly that it cannot be followed with the human eye. The combined guide and needle threader clearly reduces the down time due to broken ends in a tufting machine and this reduction in down time may be cut as much as /3 or /2 particularly where several ends have to be threaded at the same time. The tool is extremely simple and is large enough so that it will not be easily lost or mislaid. In addition to reducing the down time caused by rethreading of broken ends, the threading tool of the present invention greatly reduces the initial threading of all of the needles. Especial advantages are achieved in a staggered needle machine such as shown in Patent 2,976,829 or a tufting machine having double eyed needles such as shown in Patent 2,990,792. 7
Having thus described my invention, I claim:
1. A threading tool for pile fabric tufting machines having stationary and movable yarn guides and a plurality of closely spaced needles comprising a handle, a fork extending from one end of said handle, a hook extending from the same end of said handle a greater distance than the fork and in generally parallel spaced relationship thereto.
2. A threading tool in accordance with claim 1 in which the fork is at the outer terminus of a shank anchored in the handle and the hook is at the outer terminus of a shank anchored at the handle, the spaced relationship between the shank of the fork and the shank of the hook is at one point sufiicient to permit the tip of a needle to pass between the shank of the fork and the shank of the hook when the fork is inserted in the eye of the needle.
3. A threading tool in accordance with claim 2 having an arcuate yarn guide threading hook mounted at the opposite end of the handle.
4. A threading tool for pile fabric tufting machines having stationary and movable yarn guides and a plurality of closely spaced needles comprising a handle, an arcuate yarn guide threading hook mounted at one end of said handle, a fiat narrow shank extending from the other end of said handle and being biased therefrom in one direction, a fork at the 'outer end of said shank, a second shank extending substantially parallel to the first shank, said second shank being longer than the first shank and being biased in the opposite direction, and a hook on said second shank in spaced relation to the fork on the first shank.
References Cited by the Examiner UNITED sTATEs PATENTS 471,150 3/1892 Spengler 223-99 FOREIGN PATENTS 1,023,282 12/1952 France.
FRANK J. COHEN, Primary Examiner. JORDAN FRANKLIN, Examiner. G. H. KRIZMANICH, Assistant Examiner.