Load cells: the secret behind successful carpet shearing

Published On: October 14 2022

If like us your knowledge of carpet manufacture goes no further than shaggy or flat, here’s your opportunity to upgrade it a bit – with the help of load cells.

Carpet shearing is the process of removing the “fuzz” from carpet and rugs. Removing this fuzz from rugs makes the design clearer and often gives a rug a slightly glossy finish.

According to an article in Innovation inn Textiles magazine, shearing a carpet is:

“The essential final step in ensuring tuft uniformity and ‘just new’ freshness in finished carpet rolls.”

Shearing cylinders

Carpets are sheared using a shearing cylinder, which comes in two types:

  • a strap-on cylinder incorporates spiral blades bolted to the cylinder body
  • a caulked-in cylinder includes spirals which are fixed very securely in a machined groove within the machine

A new hybrid cylinder created by UK firm Sellers Textile Engineers :

“Combines the benefits of both, resulting in an improved cut and finer finish, in addition to longer repeatable finishing and increased rigidity … to provide a sharper and cleaner cut, along with enhanced rigidity which significantly lengthens the intervals between the necessary regrinding of the blade.”

Key to the process of maintaining an even cut is a load cell tension control drive system. It’s also a greener option, as:

“Ongoing developments on the company’s coating and drying lines have resulted in improved guiding and product tension control as well as dryer efficiency, reducing heat loss and optimising energy use.”

Load cells also help ensure that when laminating a carpet (applying a secondary backing) the backing is applied using just the right amount of pressure. As carpet machinery manufacturers Campden explain on their website:

“Automatic measurings and control of the pressure between the rollers constantly ensure – fully automatically – the desired pressure irrespective of the carpet weight or the carpet thickness.”

Load cells provide continual measurement of the roller pressure, which can then automatically compensate for the carpet’s weight.

Weighing yourself on a carpet

If you’re monitoring your weight, you’ll know that it’s important to weigh yourself on a hard flat surface, and not a carpet. Why is this?

It’s all to do with the height of the pile of your carpet, and the profile of your scales. Most domestic bathroom scales are low-profile, so they are close to the floor. When you place these type of scales on a carpet, and then stand on them, the scales sink into the carpet pile.

This causes a problem because the carpet pile is pushing up against the underside of the scales. Since bathroom scales weight through downward force, the result is an inaccurate reading that will make it appear you weigh less than you do. In fact, up to 10kgs less! Good for the ego perhaps, not so good for accuracy… That’s why some scales come with swappable feet, with flat feet for tiled surfaces, and longer feet with a spike for carpets.

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