linear vs circular
the linear machine went closed source after some early development. there is a github page but the design is frozen in beta mode. https://github.com/g3rard/OpenKnit
It seems linear machines are usually used for intricate designs in the fabric, but also to change the weave on the fly. I think the complexity of the machine vs the limited utility make circular machines more favorable.
Machines that make denim are a whole different beast https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i_G0YtXeLlY
The CircularKnitic machine is a small format machine sized to make sock diameter output. It uses a simple 1 spool of thread at a time feed. It also uses the same style needles typically used in hobby linear machines. There are a handful of hobby circular machines for sale that are in this size category. https://github.com/var-mar/circular_knitic https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ri9l0QdsUXA
I dont know anything about the different types of weaving/knitting but the industrial circular machines are fed from many spools at the same time. They also use much smaller gauged needles for a finer weave. Later the circle of fabric is typically cut lengthwise to be used as a simple flat piece to make shirts etc.
I think the best short term path forward is to increase the size of the CircularKnitic. Perhaps sized to be a diameter able to be mounted on a piece of standard ply wood. If all goes well, it should create large pieces of fabric at a slow speed. I think the utility of a full sized piece of fabric is appealing for a variety of uses. Perhaps later, the speed could be increased, then maybe refine the design for smaller thread and finer gauge needles. To change the style of weaving/knitting and increase the number of spools fed into the machine would be much more of a challenge.
Thanks Dorkmo! I'd been meaning to update this since CircularKnitic came out, but it seems I plain forgot around that time and have been very busy of late. I'll probably have time to get on that in a week. --4ndy (talk) 23:18, 24 February 2018 (CET) Also forgot to mention I grabbed a bunch of those steel needles to have a go at building one, but need to modify the design to do so.
On the note of that denim video, I think a lot of the issues with the spinning and such would be solved by either using synthetic materials, or semi-synthetic materials.
For cotton and other cellulose based fibers, semi-synthetics are quite easy. I am unsure about things like wool, as I haven't found any solutions that dissolve it well (you could also have the issue of said solution dissolving human skin and hair quite well too...) . But by using semi-synthetic fibers you have very consistent diameter, strength, and color to the thread, akin to a synthetic fiber, but from a easy to find raw material such as cotton or wood pulp.
On the note of the mechainism, I don't really know, but you seem to be doing some great work on that, so good luck!
I don't know where to put this so I will put it here:
I was reading about how needles and pins are made; It seems they are wire based. Would we use a custom machine for this, or do it manually? Also would plastic 3D Printed ones still work well, or is metal preferable (maybe a composite filament or ceramic could work better) ?
Anyways here are some links on Info I found:
Good points. I think a specialized wire forming machine might be out of our realm. We probably need to stick to buying premade needles or trying to print some. This Addi brand hobby machine uses plastic needles, so i think it would be possible. They dont have latches, im not sure what the indicates for their method of use, but i think latches might even be able to be printed if needed.