ACRYLICS – Acrylic and modacrylic carpet fibres. Acrylic fibre contains at least 850/o by weight of acrylonitrile units. Modacrylic fibre contains between 35 and 850/o by weight of acrylonitrile. Acrylic fibres are available only as staple. The spun yarns have the closest resemblance to wool of any synthetic.
AFFINITY – Attractive force between substances or particles causing them to combine chemically. An example is the affinity of acid dyes for nylon fibre.
AMERICAN ORIENTAL – Woven American carpets of Axminster or Wilton weave in Oriental colors and patterns.
AVERAGE STIFFNESS – Force required to stretch fibres one percent in length, expressed in grams per denier. Related to Young’s Modulus.
BACK SEAMS – installation seams made with the carpet turned over or face down. Opposite of “face seams” made with the carpet face up. Both of course are on the back of the carpet.
(1) Primary back-in tufting, a woven or nonwoven fabric in which the pile yarn is inserted by the tufting needles. Usually woven or nonwoven polypropylene or woven jute for carpet and often cotton duck for scatter rugs.
(2) Secondary back-Fabric laminated to the back of carpet to reinforce and increase dimensional stability. Usually woven jute or woven or non- woven polypropylene.
(3) Backings of woven carpets are the “construction yarns” comprising chain warp, stuffer warp, and shot or fill which are interwoven with the face yarn during carpet fabric formation.
BALUSTER (BANISTER) – One of a set of small pillars that support a handrail (or balustrade) on a stairway.
BASEBOARD – A board skirting the lower edge of a wall.
BEAM – Large, horizontal cylinders or spools. Warp yarns are wound on beams and located on line in back of the weaving operation.
BEARDING – Long fibre fuzz on fabrics. Caused by fibre snagging and inadequate anchorage.
BIRDCAGE – Colloquial name for the end of a stair rail where the banisters are curved in a spiral to form a newel post.
BLEEDING – Removal of colour from carpet or other fabrics by a liquid, usually water, and subsequent staining of areas adjacent to the wet area, or of other materials in contact with the wet area.
BLEND – A mixture of two or more fibres or yarns.
BOBBIN – A spool-like device made of various materials, shapes, and constructions with a head at one or both ends and a hole through its length or barrel for placement on a spindle or skewer. It is used to hold yarn for spinning, weaving, or sewing.
BODY – The solid, firm or full feel of a fabric.
BREAKING STRENGTH – Maximum stretching force that can be applied to fabric, yarn, carpet or other material before it breaks. Sometimes expressed as pounds force to break a standard sized test specimen in the ASTM Grab Test.
BROADLOOM – A term used to denote carpet produced in widths wider than six feet. Was at one time used to identify “high quality.”
BRUSSELS – A term formerly, but now rarely used to describe a loop pile or round-wire carpet woven on the Wilton loom.
BUCKLING – (Also Puckers) A carpet that does not lay flat on the floor and contains ridges. Can be caused by uneven beam tension, dimensional instability, and putting together mismatched carpet. Failure to stretch wall-to-wall installations sufficiently will also contribute buckles.
CELLULOSE – A carbohydrate of complex molecular structure which forms the basic framework of plant cells and walls. Used as a basic raw material in making rayon.
CHAIN BINDERS – Yarns running warp wise (length- wise) in the back of a woven carpet, binding construction yarns together in a woven construction.
CHENILLE – A pile fabric woven by the insertion of a prepared weft row of surface yarn tufts in a “fur” or “4caterpillar” form through very fine but strong cotton “catcher” warp yarns, and over a heavy woollen backing yarn.
COMBINATION – A term which refers to yarns or fabrics: 1. A combination yarn is composed of two or more yarns having the same or different fibres or twists; e.g., one yarn may have a high twist; the other, little or no twist. 2. A combination fabric is one which uses the above yarns.
CONSTRUCTION – Carpet construction is defined by stating the manufacturing method (tufted, woven, etc.), and the final arrangement of materials achieved by following specifications.
CONTINUOUS FILAMENT – Continuous strand of synthetic fibre extruded in yarn form, without the need for spinning which all natural fibres require.
COTTON – A soft, white, fibrous substance composed of the hairs clothing the seeds of an erect, freely branching tropical plant (cotton plant).
COVER – Descriptive of how the underlying structure is concealed by the face yarn.
CRAB – A hand device usually used for stretching carpet in a small area where a power stretcher or knee kicker cannot be used.
CREEL – The rack located adjacent to a tufting machine which holds the cones of pile yarn which sup- ply yarn to the needles of a tufting machine.
CREELING – The process of mounting yarn packages on the yarn package holder in the creel.
CROCKING – Term used to describe excess colour rubbing off as the result of improper dye penetration, fixation, or selection.
CROSS DYED – Multicoloured effects produced in a fabric with fibres of different dye affinities.
CROSS SEAMS – Seams made by joining the ends of carpet together.
CUSHION-BACK CARPET – A carpet having a cushioning lining, padding or underlay material as an integral part of its backing.
DEFLECTED NEEDLE – Needles in the tufting machine that are pushed aside by a warp end in the backing cloth causing a streak or “grinning” running lengthwise because of off-standard tuft spacing across the width. The real mechanism of most so-called needle deflection is the pushing aside of backing fabric warp yarns by tufting needles during tuft insertion. When the needles withdraw, warp yarns move back to their original positions, thus pushing tuft rows off gauge and creating wide gaps between them.
DELUSTERED FIBERS – Synthetic fibres in which brightness or reflectivity is reduced, usually by incorporation of a fraction of a percent of white pigment such as titanium dioxide. Fiber producers’ designations include dull, semi dull and semi bright, whereas bright fibres are nondelustered.
DENIER – A yarn count unit. It is the weight in grams of 9000 meters. Denier is a direct yarn numbering system; the higher the denier, the larger the yarn.
DENSITY – The weight of pile yarn in a unit volume of carpet. U.S. government FHA density (D), expressed in ounces per cubic yard, is given by the formula
DOBBY – A ‘carpet loom device that selects the rotation in which one or more of a group of harnesses are raised over a filling shot. Can float an end over as many filling shots as desired. Produces geometric patterns in woven carpet.
DOUBLE BACK – (See also Secondary Backing) – Woven or nonwoven fabric laminated to the back of carpet with latex or other adhesive. Double-backed carpets have enhanced dimensional stability and strength.
DRAW – The manner and rotation in which the warp ends are placed in the loom heddles and reeds.
DRAWING-IN or DRAWING-UP – The process of placing the warp ends through the heddles and reeds of the loom.
FASTNESS – Retention of colour by carpets or other materials, usually with reference to specific exposures, e.g., light fastness and wash fastness. Dyestuff, fibre type, and dyeing method all influence the ability of coloured carpets and fabrics to withstand the effects of colour destroying agents.
FELTING – A nonwoven fabric formation process comprising entanglement of fibres by mechanical or other means. The product is called felt. Felts made by needle entanglement of solution dyed fibres such as polypropylene are used as outdoor carpet. Unlike weaving and tufting, felting does not employ yarns but converts fibre directly to fabric.
FIBER CUSHION – Separate carpet underpad consisting of needle-felted animal hair, jute, other fibres, or fibre blends. Hair and jute blends are common. Some padding felts are rubberised and may have one or two rubber faces.
FILAMENT – A single continuous strand of natural or synthetic fibre.
FINISHING – A collective term denoting processing of carpets and textiles subsequent to tufting, weaving, and dyeing. Carpet finishing processes include shearing, brushing, application of secondary backing, application of attached foam cushion, application of soil retardant and antistatic chemicals, back beating, steaming, and others.
FLUFFING – Appearance on carpet surface of loose fibre fragments left during manufacture; not a defect but a characteristic which disappears after carpet use and vacuuming. Sometimes called fuzzing or shedding.
FRAMES – Racks at back of the Wilton loom holding spools from which yarns are fed into the loom, each frame holding separate colors; thus a 3-frame Wilton has three colors in the design.
FRIEZE – (Pronounced “free-zay”) – A tightly twisted yarn that gives a rough, nubby appearance to carpet pile, and carpet having this characteristic.
GAUGE/PITCH – The number of ends of surface yarn counting across the width of carpet. In woven carpet, pitch is the number of ends of yarn in 27 inches of width; e.g., 216 divided by 27 = 8 ends per inch. In tufted carpet, gauge also means the number of ends of surface yarn per inch counting across the carpet; e.g., 118 gauge = 8 ends per inch. To convert gauge to pitch, multiply ends per inch by 27; e.g., 1/10 gauge is equivalent to 270 pitch, or 10 ends per inch x 27. One-eighth gauge is 8 ends of yarn per inch x 27 216 pitch.
GREIGE GOODS – (Pronounced “gray goods”) – Un-dyed carpet or other textile materials.
HAND – The tactile esthetic qualities of carpets and textiles. Factors determining how carpets feel to the hand include weight, stiffness, fibre type and denier, density, backing and latex.
HARNESS – Part of a weaving loom comprising frames holding the heddles through which the warp yarns pass, and used to raise and lower them to form the shed in which the shuttles moves to insert fill yarn.
HEATHER – A multicolour effect provided by blending fibres of different colors prior to spinning carpet yarn.
INDOOR/OUTDOOR CARPET – A term synonymous with outdoor carpet.
JACQUARD – An apparatus on a carpet weaving loom that produces patterns from coloured yarns. The pattern information is contained on perforated cards. The holes in the cards activate the mechanism that selects the colour to be raised to the pile surface. Wilton looms have jacquard pattern devices.
JAMB – The side of a door frame, doorway, or window; usually the side on which the opening for the lock is placed.
JERKER BAR – Part of a tufting machine comprising a movable guide or eye board through which the pile yarns are threaded. It controls tension on the pile yarns on their path to the tufting needles, removing slack on the upstroke of the needle bar and contributing to yarn feed control.
KNEE KICKER – A carpet installation tool consisting of a pinned plate connected to a short section of metal tubing. The end opposite to the plate has a padded cushion which the installer strikes with his knee to stretch carpet which is gripped by the pinned plate. Knee kickers should be used only in areas which are so small that power stretchers cannot be used. In general, adequate stretching of carpet installations cannot be achieved with knee kickers.
KRAFTCORD – A yarn made from twisted kraft paper. Kraftcord is used as a construction (backing) yarn in woven carpets.
LEVEL LOOP – A carpet style having all tufts in a loop form and of identical height. May be woven or tufted.
LINING – Same as Carpet Cushion
LOOP PILE – Carpet style having a pile surface consisting of uncut loops. May be woven or tufted. Also called “round wire” in woven carpet terminology.
LOW ROWS – A quality defect sometimes found in woven carpet comprising rows of tufts having pile heights below specification. This condition occurs in Axminster weaving when the face yarn spools are almost empty.
MARKERS – Coloured yarns woven into the backs of woven carpets to aid installers in achieving correct pattern match and pile direction.
MATTING – Severe pile crush combined with entanglement of fibres and tufts.
MENDING – Hand repair of carpet after tufting and weaving to replace missing tufts, remove knots and loose ends, etc.
MONOFILAMENT – A yarn composed of a single continuous strand of synthetic polymer.
MORESQUE – A multicolour carpet made from Moresque yarns. Moresque yarns are produced by ply. twisting two or more singles yarns of different colour or shades. Moresque yarns thus have a “barber pole” appearance. Moresque carpets in suitable colors are good soil hiders in high traffic areas.
NAP – Carpet or rug pile surface.
NARROW CARPET – Woven carpet 27 or 36 inches wide.
NEEDLE – 1. Tufting-An eyed needle which inserts yarns into primary backing to form tufts. 2. Needlepunching-Barbed felting needles which entangle and compress fibrous fleeces into needled felts such as those used for outdoor carpet. 3. Knitting-Hooked needles that form the loops of knitted fabric.
NEEDLE BAR – Tufting machine part that holds the needles and carries them up and down. Also, that part of a knitting machine on which needles are mounted.
NOSING – The front dividing line of a step, where the top of a riser joins the front of a tread.
ORIENTAL RUGS – Handwoven rugs made in the Middle East and the Orient.
OUARTER – OUND – Wooden or plastic molding having a cross-section comprising a 90 degree arc of a circle. It is used at joints between walls and floors, or between larger moldings and floors.
PACKAGE DYED – Yarn dyed while wound on perforated tubes or wire forms. The package dye machine forces dye liquor through the yarn on the dye package. (Discussed further in Chapter 13)
PATTERN STREAKS – Visually apparent streaking in patterned carpet resulting from linear juxtaposition of pattern elements in one direction. It is usually most visible in the length direction. It is not a carpet defect, but is inherent in certain designs. Contract specifiers should view rolls of carpet laid out on a floor to evaluate geometric or other busy patterns for this characteristic which may be objectionable in long corridors and other large areas but not visible in small rooms.
PIGMENT – Highly coloured insoluble powdered substance used to impart colour to other materials. White pigments, e.g., titanium dioxide, are dispersed in fibre forming polymers to produce delustered (semi dull and dull) fibres.
PIGMENTED YARNS – Same as solution dyed or dope dyed yarns.
PILE WIRE – Part of a carpet weaving loom consisting of a metal strip or rod on which the pile tufts are formed.
PILE YARN – The yarn which forms the tufts of the carpet. Also called “Face Yarn.”
PILLING – A condition of the carpet face (which may occur from heavy traffic) in which fibres from different tufts become entangled with one another forming hard masses of fibres and tangled tufts. Pills may be cut off with scissors.
PITCH – See Gauge.
PLUSH FINISH – A smooth carpet surface texture in which individual tufts are only minimally visible and the overall visual effect is that of a single level of fibre ends. This finish is normally achieved only on cut-pile carpet produced from non-heat-set singles spun yarns by brushing and shearing.
PLY – A single end component in a plied yarn, or the number which tells how many single ends have been ply-twisted together to form a plied yarn, e.g., 2-ply or 3-ply.
POLYMERS – High molecular weight chemical com- pounds formed by repeated linking of smaller chemical units called monomers. Polymers from which fibres are made are long chain molecules in which the monomers are linked end to end linearly. Synthetic polymers used for carpet fibre include nylon-6, 6 and nylon-6 (polyamides), polyester, polypropylene, and polyacrylonitrile (acrylics). In popular terminology, polymers are also called plastics or resins.
POLYPROPYLENE – Synthetic thermoplastic polymer used for molded items, sheets, films, and fibres. FTC (U.S. Government) classification is Olefin. The polymer is made by stereo specific polymerization of propylene. Most polypropylene carpet fibre is solution dyed and sometimes contains ultraviolet stabilizers for outdoor use. Printable modifications are available but not extensively used. The carpet fibre is available as both bulked continuous filament yarns and staple for spun yarn production.
POWDER – A carpet cleaning preparation consisting of absorbent granules impregnated with dry cleaning fluids, detergents, and other cleaners. The dry powder is sprinkled on the carpet, worked into the pile with a brush, left to absorb soil for a short time, and finally removed with the absorbed soil by vacuuming.
PRIME URETHANE CUSHION – Separate carpet underpad made from virgin polyurethane foam. The sheet of foam is cut from large “loaves.” As opposed to prime cushion, rebonded polyurethane is made from recovered scrap.
PRINTED CARPET – Carpet having coloured patterns applied by methods analogous to those used for printing flat textiles and paper. These include flatbed screen printing employing woven fabric screens, rotary screen printing with perforated sheet steel screens, Stalwart printing employing sponge rubber pattern elements on wooden rollers, and modern computer programmed jet printing. (See Chapter 14)
RANDOM SHEARED – A carpet texture created by shearing either level loop or high-low loop carpet lightly so that only the higher loops are sheared. The sheared areas are less reflective than the unsheared loops which appear brighter and lighter in colour. Random shearing of high-low loop carpet produces a texture somewhat similar to cut and loop.
REED – Part of a carpet weaving loom consisting of thin strips of metal with spaces between them through which warp yarns pass. The motion of the reed pushes fill yarn tightly into the fabric.
REED MARKS – Woven fabric (or woven carpet) defects consisting of lengthwise streaks caused by rubbing of reed elements against warp yarns.
REMNANT – A short piece of carpet roll goods usually less than nine feet long.
REPEAT – The dimensions of the basic pattern unit in any type of patterned carpet including printed, woven, high-low tufted loop, cut and loop, etc. See Match for further discussion.
RESIST PRINTING – A technique for producing coloured patterns wherein carpet is first printed with colourless chemicals which alter the dye affinity of the printed areas. The printed areas in nylon carpet, for example, may be altered to be light dyeing and/or cationic dyeable relative to the untreated regular acid dyeable nylon. Subsequent piece dyeing in a dye beck with appropriate selected dyestuff s produces a coloured pattern. In this fashion numerous colour ways may be produced from a single print run.
RESTRETCH – A carpet installation term used to de- scribe carpet stretching performed subsequent to original installation to remove wrinkles, bubbles, or loose fit. Most restretching is caused by failure of the installer to adequately stretch the carpet during original installation. Restretching should be performed with power stretchers and not with knee kickers. This is true of all stretching operations in overpad tackless strip installations.
ROWS OR WIRES – In woven carpet this is the number of pile yarn tufts per running inch lengthwise. Called rows in Axminster and wires in Wilton and velvet carpet. Analogous to “stitches per inch” in tufted carpet.
SCALE DRAWING – A drawing, such as a building blueprint, having its measurements in fixed proportion to the actual dimensions of the room, floor, or building depicted. A typical scale might be “one quarter inch to the foot.” On such a drawing, each quarter inch of linear dimension represents one foot of linear dimension in the actual structure.
SEAMS – See Back Seams; Face Seams; Cross Seams; Side Seams.
SECONDARY BACKING – Woven or nonwoven fabric reinforcement laminated to the back of tufted carpet, usually with latex adhesive, to enhance dimensional stability, strength, stretch resistance, lay-flat stiffness, and hand. Most secondary backings are woven jute, woven polypropylene, or nonwoven polypropylene. The term is sometimes used in a broader sense to include attached cushion and other polymeric back coatings. Because secondary backing is visible, whereas primary backing is concealed under the pile yarn in finished carpet, most dealers and installers refer to the secondary backing simply as “backing.”
SECONDS – Off-quality, defective, or substandard carpet normally marketed at substantial price discounts as “seconds” or “imperfects” by manufacturers. If manufacturers’ first quality standards are high, seconds may represent excellent values.
SELF-TONE – A pattern of two or more shades of the same colour. When two shades are used in a pattern or design, it is called “two-tone.”
SELVAGES – Carpet edges at @ides of rolls.
SET or DROP-MATCH – See Match.
SETTING – The process of preparing a pattern for the Axminster loom by winding the specified coloured yarns on a spool in the sequence required for weaving.
SEWING POLE – Any piece of wood or other material, more or less rounded, over which carpet may be laid in order to facilitate sewing and other related operations. Most installers prefer a wooden pole about 4 inches in diameter that has been slightly flattened on one side.
SHAG – A carpet texture characterized by long pile tufts laid over in random directions in such a manner that the sides of the yarn form the traffic surface. Modern shags are made from plied heat-set yarns and are either cut-pile or cut-and-loop styles.
SHED – A weaving term describing the space between warp yarns (created by alternate raising and lowering of the loom harness) in which the fill yarn is carried by the shuttle or other fill insertion device.
SHORT ROLL – A length of carpet roll goods shorter than a full shipping roll and longer than a remnant.
SHUTTLE – Part of a weaving loom which carries fill yarn back and forth across the fabric width. In conventional looms it contains a spool of fill yarn called a bobbin.
SIDE SEAMS – Seams running the length of the carpet. Sometimes called length seams.
SKEIN DYED YARN – Pile yarn dyed while in the form of large loosely wound skeins. (See Chapter 13)
SLIVER – An intermediate stage in the production of spun yarns from staple fibre. It is a large, soft, untwisted strand or rope of fibres produced by carding or pin drafting.
SOIL RETARDANT – A chemical finish applied to fibres or carpet and fabric surfaces which inhibits attachment of soil to fibre.
SPACE DYED – Yarn dyed two or more colors which alternate along the length. See Chapter 13 “Dyeing” for variations, methods, and applications of space dyed yarns in contract carpet.
SPECIFIC GRAVITY – Ratio of the density (weight per unit volume) of a material to the density of water under standard conditions. Arithmetically, densities and specific gravities expressed in metric units are approximately equal. Carpet fibre specific gravities range from 0.91 for polypropylene (lighter than water) to 1.38 for polyester (about 38 percent denser than water).
SPLUSH – A tufted carpet style, no longer popular, combining characteristics of both shag and plush textures. Most splushes were made from non-heat-set singles yarns (similar to yarns used in plush) but were constructed with long pile length on wide gauge machines at relatively low stitch rates (similar to shag construction). The combination of singles yarns and low density tuft placement resulted in matting, pilling, and generally poor wear performance. It is definitely not a contract style.
SPONGE CUSHION – Rubber foam material which is chemically blown to form a cushion product.
SPROUTING – Protrusion of individual tuft or yarn ends above pile surface. May be clipped with scissors. See Shooting.
STAIN – Foreign material (soil, liquids, etc.) on carpet that is not removable by standard cleaning methods. See section on “Carpet Maintenance”.
STAPLE FIBER – Short lengths of fibre which may be converted into spun yarns by textile yarn spinning processes. Also simply called staple. Staple may also be converted directly into nonwoven fabrics such as needle-punched carpet. For carpet yarns spun on the common modified worsted systems, most staples are six to eight inches long. See Chapter I 1 “Pile Fibres and Yarns.”
STAY TACKING – A carpet installation term for temporary nailing or tacking to hold the stretch until the entire installation is stretched over and fastened onto the tackless strip. An important technique in large con- tract installations which are too large to stretch in one step.
STEP RETURN – A term for that part of a staircase tread which extends over the riser. Also known as a bullnose or extended nosing.
STIFFNESS – Resistance of materials, such as carpet, to bending.
STITCH LENGTH – Total length of yarn from which a tuft is made. It is numerically equal to twice the pile height plus the associated back-stitch behind the primary backing.
STITCHES – Stitches per inch. Number of yarn tufts per running inch of a single tuft row in tufted carpet.
STOCK DYED YARN – Coloured spun yarn produced from fibres dyed in staple form. The term does not include yarns spun from solution dyed staple. See Chapter 13 “Dyeing”.
TAK DYEING – A continuous dyeing process for producing random multicolour patterns which are usually less sharply defined than printed patterns. Colour dye liquor is applied to the carpet in a controlled pattern (of droplets. (See Chapter 13)
TENSILE STRENGTH – The greatest stretching forces a yarn, fabric, or carpet can bear without breaking.
TEXTURE – Visual and tactile surface characteristics of carpet pile including such esthetical and structural elements as high-low or cut-and-loop patterning, yarn twist, pile erectness or lay-over, harshness or softness to the touch, lustre, and yarn dimensions.
TIMING – Operational sequence of the moving parts of looms and tufting machines.
TONE ON TONE – A carpet pattern made by using two or more shades of the same hue.
TOP COLORS – in printed or woven coloured patterns, top colors are the ones forming the pattern elements, as distinguished from background or ground colors.
TOTAL WEIGHT – Weight per square yard of the total carpet pile, yarn, primary and secondary backings and coatings.
TRAFFIC – The passing to-and-fro of persons with special reference to carpet wear resulting therefrom.
TUFT BIND – Force required to pull a tuft from the carpet (usually measured in ounces).
UNDERLAY – See Carpet Cushion.
VELVET CARPET – Woven carpet made on a loom similar to a Wilton loom but lacking the Jacquard motion. Velvet carpets are generally level loop or plush in solid or tweed colors.
VELVET FINISH – A smooth surface texture on dense plush carpet.
WARP PILE – In carpet weaving, the warp yarns forming the pile. See Warp.
WEAVING – A fabric formation process, used for manufacturing carpet, in which yarns are interlaced to form cloth. The weaving loom interfaces lengthwise (warp) and width wise (filling) yarns. Carpet weaves are complex, often involving several sets of warp and filling yarns. (See Axminster, Wilton and Velvet.)
WEFT OR WOOF – Yarns which run width wise in woven cloth or carpet, interlacing with the various warp yarns. See Filling Yarn.
WIRE HEIGHT – It is the height of the pile tufts in woven carpet.
WIRES – Parts of carpet weaving looms composed of thin metal rods or blades on which the pile tufts are formed. Round wires produce loop pile carpet, and flat wires with sharp edges produce cut-pile (plush) textures.
WOOLEN YARN – Spun yarn, composed of any natural or synthetic fibre, manufactured by the woollen system spinning process. Compared to worsted system or parallel spun yarns which are common to most tufted carpets, woollen yarns are soft, bulky, and hairy. Staple for woollen spinning is short, in the 3.5 to 5.5 inch range.