There are three main types of production system.
One-off production is designing and making a single textile product to a client's specification
Batch production is manufacturing set quantities of a textile product to order
Mass production is industrial-scale manufacture of large quantities of products, usually on a production line
Systems and sub-systems
In a production system, a number of different designing and manufacturing processes or sub-systems take place at the same time. Examples of sub-systems are
The range of hand tools, equipment and machines used in textile production.
Computers are used for producing Lay plans which work out exactly where to place each pattern piece to best use the fabric. Remember wasted fabric is wasted money!
A plotter would mark out the pattern pieces and any construction instructions such as darts.
A CAM cutting machine automatically cuts out the pieces following the lay plan. It cuts the fabric quickly and accurately using vertical knives, high pressure water jets or lasers. Many layers can be cut out at once which means less labour costs and more efficiency
A Band saw can be used by a skilled operator. It is used for cutting through multiple layers of fabric quickly. Metal chain mail gloves are worn to protect the workers hands.
These range from simple machines to ones that do specialist tasks such as buttonholes, overlocking fabric edges or CAD CAM machines that stitch out motifs
1- Lockstitch –Used for sewing seams (Straight stitch)
2- Over locker—Stitches, cuts and finishes seams in one process
3-Seam cover—Used for sewing belt loops
4-Automatic buttonhole—Used for sewing buttonholes
5-CAD/CAM—Multihead embroidery machine
Hand tools and equipment
Tools & equipment for
1-Designing, colouring and embellishing
2-Measuring and marking
4-Heating and pressing
Below are some of the main types of machines used in the manufacture of textile products:
Digital jet printer
Multi-head embroidery machine
USING COMPUTERS TO DESIGN AND PRESENT
Computers are used by designers for:
1-Writing documents and creating display boards, including artwork, text, spreadsheets, graphs and tables
2-Putting together slide show presentations
3-Digital photography and video making
4-Designing and sampling
5-Supplementing drawing and colouring with use of specialist fashion software, e.g. Speed Step.
DRAWING USING SOFTWARE
1-Drawing software can be used to design, illustrate and show working drawings. Drawn lines and shapes or photographic images can be imported and edited, or scanned to manipulate and develop ideas. Collections with a range of coordinating products can be developed from one initial idea.
2-With some specialist software it is possible to get a 3D impression of the design by rotating the design and seeing it from different viewpoints. The designer can use the computer to simulate draping and shadowing to create a realistic image of the design. Also, ideas for different colourways can be tested and a variety of printed, knitted or woven fabric designs can be trialled on screen, to see the effect of each different combination of colour and texture.
USE OF ICT FOR PRESENTATION
The designer can present ideas to the client on screen or printed on to presentation boards, or via e-mail, and then quickly modify them according to client feedback. Promotional material developed from design work can be adapted for use on websites, business stationery and advertising and marketing materials, such as point of sale literature and display posters. Computers make this development of related design work a quicker process.
DESIGNING AND SAMPLING USING COMPUTERS
1-Computers can be used to pass detailed design information to machinery quickly so that samples can be made during the design and development stages, often without the designers even leaving their workstations.
2-Designers can use computers to design new woven or knitted fabrics on screen and then show the new fabric in use on a drawn model, on screen or on printed copy.
3-Printed fabric design developed on screen can be digitally printed on to actual fabric for sampling.
4-Embroidered motifs and patterns can be designed on the computer and then stitched directly onto fabric.
5-A design process that previously took weeks or months can now take less than 24hrs. The images on colour monitors and those reproduced by colour printers are so realistic that they can be used to present ideas to fashion buyers. In the past buyers have demanded to see and touch actual sample garments, before deciding to place orders, but with the new computer technology they now have the confidence to buy from screened or printed presentations.
ICT and CAM
ICT and computer-aided manufacture (CAM)
ICT and CAM play a vital role in modern textiles production. For example, they enable :
1-designs to be sent electronically to the print manufacturer and stored on computer to ease repeat printing orders.
2-colours to be matched to the design, dyes weighed and dispensed and the fabric printed automatically
3-ICT makes possible the just-in-time ordering of materials and components so they arrive at the factory as they are needed, ie just-in-time for production to start.
4-ICT enables companies to transmit information between plants, and manufacture on a global scale
Computer-aided manufacturing involves the use of CNC machines for printing, cutting, joining and many other textiles processes. CNC-automated machines can repeat processes with accuracy and reliability, and are easily re-programmed when changes to design or production run are needed. The graphic shows some of the uses of CNC machines.
Computer-integrated manufacturing (CIM) systems integrate or link CAD and CAM systems. These combined systems link design development, production planning and manufacturing systems together. Companies that use CIM are able to design a product in one country and manufacture it overseas where labour costs are lower.
Make sure that you understand the different roles of clients, designers, manufacturers and users.
You need to know what a production plan and work schedule are - and the difference between them.
Make sure that you know the difference between one-off, batch and mass production.
1-Production plans and work schedules are important planning tools in batch and mass production.
2-The production plan should set out information about all the stages of production, so that every product is made to the same quality
See example below:
Each production plan should include the following stages:
1-The preparation stage details the amount of materials to buy-in, preparation of garment patterns, templates and lay plans.
2-The processing stage details the fabric spreading, cutting, labelling and bundling of the fabric pieces.
3-The assembly stage contains instructions for fusing, joining and pressing the separate product parts.
4-The finishing stage gives instructions for decorative/functional finishing and final pressing.
5-The packaging stage explains how to label, hang, fold, and cover the product ready for transport to the retailer.
A work schedule sets out instructions about the order of assembly, the stitch type, the processes to be used, the time each process will take and the seam allowance