Inside Textiles

Free membership

Receive our weekly Newsletter
and set tailored daily news alerts.


Digital solutions for challenging times

The Karl Mayer Group is focusing on digitisation at TMA ASIA + CITME, which is being held at the NECC in Shanghai, from 12 to 16 June 2021.

21st May 2021

Innovation in Textiles
 |  Obertshausen, Germany

Clothing/​Footwear, Industrial

The textiles industry is used to flexibility, but the coronavirus pandemic has once again increased the dynamics of change enormously. Karl Mayer, the innovative textile machinery manufacturer, has reacted quickly to the challenges of the crisis and has considerably accelerated its development activities, especially in the field of digitization. The result is digital pioneering solutions for machines, technical services and data that make textile production faster, more self-sufficient and more diverse.

Visitors to ITMA ASIA + CITME can find out more at Karl Mayer's stand, A 35 in Hall 4 of the NECC, in Shanghai from 12 to 16 June 2021. Here, the latest digital products, mainly offered under the KMO.ON brand, will play the main role - especially among the high-performance, high-price machines on display. The selection of high-tech models on display will be completed by a show of fashionable fabric developments and will include representatives of the Stoll flat knitting machine brand for the first time. Visitors to Karl Mayer's stand from the warp knitting, flat knitting, weaving and warp preparation sectors will find solutions for effective optimization, and above all for expanding their businesses. 

We want to help our customers participate in the current economic cycle. We offer them solutions that, above all, exploit the opportunities offered by digitisation for highly efficient production

China has overcome the coronavirus pandemic relatively quickly and in the first three months of 2021, its economic growth grew to record levels, Karl Mayer reports. The boom led to lively investment activities among textile manufacturers, and the Karl Mayer Group is assisting them in this endeavour. "We want to help our customers participate in the current economic cycle. We offer them solutions that, above all, exploit the opportunities offered by digitisation for highly efficient production," says Arno Gärtner, CEO of the Karl Mayer Group.

Karl Mayer is looking forward to exchanging information about its innovations and market trends directly with guests from its most important sales region, for the first time since the beginning of the pandemic. There will also be further innovations and opportunities to talk during the main trade fair days at an in-house show at Karl Mayer (China) in Changzhou.

Even customers who can’t travel can learn more about Karl Mayer’s solutions for current and future business - following ITMA ASIA + CITME, there will be a hybrid exhibition with a tour of the virtual Karl Mayer exhibition stand, including a wide range of digital information such as videos and interviews from the live exhibition with experts.

High price-performance machines for strong markets

Warp Knitting

The HKS 3-M ON, 280", sets new standards in warp knitting in terms of output and flexibility. At 2500 rpm, the innovative HKS model is around 15% faster than its predecessor with the same working width and, thanks to the width expansion, even more productive than the narrower 210" version. Despite its high speed, the HKS 3-M ON offers the diverse patterning possibilities of Karl Mayer EL pattern drives.

The basis is the new electromechanical guide bar control and the secure networking of the machine via the k.ey industrial computer with a cloud. From here, pattern data is loaded directly onto the machine, without production delays and handling effort. The patterning potential can be easily adapted to current market needs through different business models.

Among them is one variant for pattern repeats over 36 stitch courses which uses KM.ON's web-based k.innovation CORE software. The newly launched dashboard from KM.ON can also be used to call up all important machine key figures independently of time and on the move. The overview creates transparency for quick decisions and efficient planning.

The k.ey box from KM.ON for secure networking of machines with a cloud. © Karl Mayer

The digital solutions can be tried out at the HKS 3-M ON or at the KM.ON flagship store on the Karl Mayer trade fair stand. Other highlights include k.innovation STYLE for the collaborative creation of designs in cross-divisional teams and the new Paperless Solutions, which digitally document machine runs and fabric quality. The digital reports are stored securely in the cloud. This replaces paper management with often illegible data and enables fast, authorized access to values that are always up to date.

Flat Knitting

Karl Mayer Group’s Stoll flat knitting machines ensure maximum efficiency and productivity in flat knitting production with the knitelligence Industry 4.0 platform. The modular system with its software solutions ensures a high degree of automation throughout the value chain. For the creative process, the new design software k.innovation CREATE will be launched in Shanghai - Stoll and KM.ON - two successful brands of the Karl Mayer Group - have combined their expertise and creativity to significantly simplify design development and speed up programming.

The new BMS 52 ki for the commodity market. © Stoll by Karl Mayer

Further modules of knitelligence are k.innovation CREATE PLUS, which combines an innovative programming system with an easy-to-learn user interface for optimum utilization of knitting potential, and a production planning system (PPS) for rational management of all processes. During the trade fair, three networked knitelligence flat knitting machines will be demonstrating the performance of the platform: two ADF models and a new BMS model for the commodity market.

The new BMS 52 ki demonstrates Stoll’s proven quality, high performance and minimal costs. Using digital solutions from knitelligence, the new machine will be producing individualized front parts for a children's sweater in a completely automated process during the trade show. The designs and knitting program are created with the k.innovation CREATE PLUS.

Stoll’s tried-and-tested ADF family has also been further improved to meet market requirements. New is the ADF 830-24 ki knit & wear in the unique gauge of E 10.2. With its fine gauge, the model exhibited in Shanghai will produce fine Stoll-knit and wear products with intarsia, inverse plating and Stoll-ikat plating, along with woven looks from Stoll-weave-in technology.

Gauge E 10.2 will now be available for almost all Stoll machines and in addition, the ADF portfolio has been expanded to include a variant with a 36ʺ working width. An ADF 330 ki will be presented in Shanghai to this end. This model is available as a variant with 24 or 32 yarn guides and with the Stoll-weave-in device. During the trade fair, it will be producing a customizable footwear item in E9.2 a multi-gauge. The seamless knitted 3D shoe upper is optimised for a minimal downstream make-up in footwear production.

Warp Preparation

In the warp preparation for weaving sector, the ISODIRECT is an efficient beam warping machine for the mid-range segment with an excellent price/performance ratio. The innovative model processes all spun yarns, reaches a warping speed of up to 1000 m/min and can be operated with simple hand movements. The beams produced are absolutely cylindrical in design, precisely wound and completely identical in terms of warp lengths. A computer-controlled measuring system allows deviations of only 0.15% maximum. With the high-quality ISODIRECT beams, machines in weaving mills can fully develop their efficiency potential.

The efficient beam warping machine ISODIRECT warper for the mid-range segment. © Karl Mayer

Care Solutions

In the Care Solutions sector, Karl Mayer is using the possibilities offered by digitization to provide after-sales support at a completely new level. A newly developed dashboard now makes it possible to book and use support services individually in the simplest way, in a targeted manner, and clear communication. Support from experts, tools for spare parts management and online service offers can be used.

Specific products of the Care Solutions dashboard for this are the proven WEBSHOP for easy spare parts ordering, a health check for inspecting the machine, as well as online after-sales tools for immediate troubleshooting of the machine remotely and for expert support. There is also a button to access videos that provide machine and technological know-how. Assistance videos and e-learning tools are also expected in this area. A prerequisite for utilizing the clear customer benefits from the diverse offers, is the networking of machines via k.ey.

Textile solutions for current trends

Chic knitted goods – functional and sustainable

In the area of comfortable fashion and loungewear, Karl Mayer will present fashionable fabrics and chic garments with important product attributes for the current times - smart, casual and environmentally friendly.

For greater sustainability, recycled PES and PA yarns are being processed on all Karl Mayer's current machines, without compromising on speed and product quality. In addition, the company points out, warp knitting, unlike weaving, can do without sizing. With less water, chemicals and energy than generally used in weaving, woven-fabric-like articles can be produced, as demonstrated by a chic denim-style dress. The fabric for this was created on a WEFT.FASHION TM 3 and consists of 73% yarn-dyed, coarse natural fibre flame yarn.

Trendy fabric from a WEFT.FASHION TM 3 in a yarn-dyed, coarse natural fibre flame yarn. © Karl Mayer

Fine woven-fabric-like materials for men's shirts, can also be produced on warp knitting machines. One example is a lightweight article completely made from polyester for full recycling, which offers natural comfort-stretch, breathability and wear without wrinkling.

Less waste and more comfort is also the goal of close-to-contour manufacturing. What is possible in this regard is demonstrated by a sporty top from a RDPJ 6/2 EL that was made with seamless technology and free-cut fabrication, thus managing without seams.

TERRY.ECO, the highly productive and sustainable production of terry products, also has something new to offer. For the first time, a super-soft terry fabric made from absorbent bamboo fibres on the inside, and ultra-soft microfiber polyester on the outside, has been processed on a TM 4-TS EL to create casual loungewear.

The fabric showcase is rounded off by fashion lace fashion and by new, innovative 3D crinkle fabrics. The fabrics produced on a HKS 4-M EL were created using a yarn mix of polyamide and partially drawn wrapping yarn.

Chic set made from a fashionable 3D crinkle fabric from an HKS 4-M EL. © Karl Mayer

Eye-catchers for guests from the flat knitting sector are likely to be the extravagant fashion items from the current Stoll collection ‘FASTER: From(CONCEPT)–To(STORE)’. In addition, a joint project for the production of sustainable face masks will be shown.

Woven fabrics in indigo with GREENDYE

In the denim sector, a collection of fashionable denim items will demonstrate the performance of Karl Mayer's environmentally friendly nitrogen technology for indigo dyeing. The dye content of the deep blue GREENDYE fabrics is 1.5 to 2.7%. To achieve this, the cotton raw material went through three dye troughs instead of the usual six. This reduces the liquor volume and thus water or wastewater and chemicals. In addition, less yarn waste is produced, and the dye is better fixed.

Knitted geotextiles and construction textiles

The exhibits of Karl Mayer Technische Textilien at ITMA ASIA + CITME will focus on infrastructure and construction applications. In particular, the wide range of articles for the renovation of pipes, the implementation of roofing systems, the reinforcement of roadways and for use as plaster grids are proving to be bestsellers in China. Karl Mayer Technische Textilien is also looking forward to having discussions about its new BIAXTRONIC II. The weft insertion warp knitting machine has been optimized in terms of its price/performance ratio and has already successfully been presented to key customers in the run-up to the exhibition.

Grid structures from a knitting machine with weft insertion for use in the construction sector. © Karl Mayer

Latest Reports

Business intelligence for the fibre, textiles and apparel industries: technologies, innovations, markets, investments, trade policy, sourcing, strategy...

Find out more