Recently I read a story in the Guardian and it forced me to think how technology can make a big difference in our life.
Here is the excerpt from the Guardian Story:
News Title – 3D Knitting: After 8000 Years a New Dimension in Weaving and Spinning
In the 20th century mass production revolutionized how we made clothes from fabric. Now new technology is taking textiles into new fields of medicine, architecture and sport.
3D knitting takes a digital design and turns it into a piece of clothing. In its simplest form, you download a pattern from the internet and size it digitally to fit the person it is intended for. You then feed the machine with the yarn and let it get on with its job.
Despite all this engineering, what makes fabric really special, is that it doesn’t seem hi-tech at all. It speaks an emotional and sensual language that we all respond to and inspires love and even obsession.
Recently I noticed that 3 D Weaving has further improved and become affordable too for the manufacturers to do new products.
I phoned few manufacturers to learn more about the benefits and they directed me to check these resources.
Watch the Below Video to Learn about 3 D Weaving Technology
Main Benefits of 3 D Weaving Technology
Rather than boring you with the technical stuff, I am going to share the main benefits here and some good resources so that you can learn more about it if you want.
As per the Wikipedia, here are the main benefits:
- 3D woven fabric are very useful in applications where the composite structure is subjected to out-of-plane loading.
- 3D woven fabrics have a high formability, which means they can easily take the shape of the mold in case of complex composite designs.
- 3D woven fabrics have a highly porous structure, which decreases resin infusion time.
- 3D orthogonal woven fabrics have less or no yarn crimp (the difference in length of yarn, before and after weaving); therefore, mechanical properties of fibers are almost fully utilized in warp and weft directions. Thus, it could benefit from the maximum load carrying capacity of high performance fibers in these directions.
- The shape of 3D woven fabrics can be tapered in all three directions during the weaving process, producing near net shape fabrics such as I-beams and stiffeners. This means that these preforms could be placed directly in the mold without any additional labor work.
- There is no need for layering to create a part, because the single fabric has a considerable thickness that provides the full three-dimensional reinforcement.
- The 3D woven fabric can be molded into different shapes and can be used in biological applications to create replacement tissues.
Here are some resources for those who are technical and want to learn more about this:
- An introduction to the Mechanics of 3D-Woven Fibre Reinforced Composites
- 3-Dimensional Weaving
- 3D Fabric: A result of new weaving technology
- An introduction to 3D Weaving
For me the above information is too technical and in simple terms, here is my list of benefits:
- Better fitting of clothes or products to our body
- Breathable fabric - you can wear for longer duration
- Washable fabric - no restrictions on wash-ability
- Better grip around our body
- Lighter fabric - no discomfort if this fabric is worn for a longer duration
- Softer fabric - makes you feel comfortable
Now I wanted to focus on how this technology is helping us by having a better Knee Compression Sleeve.
How 3D Weaving Technology is Changing Knee Compression Sleeves?
My editor asked me why I am focused on Knee Compression Sleeves only and why not other sleeves such as elbow compression sleeves or ankle compression sleeves.
I had to start from somewhere so I started with Knee Sleeves first. During my research on this topic, I found Missy from Furious Fitwear Brands talking about it in few places and also in our Public Relations news articles. So I decided to reach out to her.
Here is my interview with Missy on how this latest 3D weaving technology is making knee sleeves better:
Barry (reporter): Hi Missy, thanks for taking my call and appreciate you helping me understand the benefits of 3 D weaving technology for knee sleeves.
Missy: I appreciate you contacting me on this topic as I strongly believe in this theory that the main role of any technological advancement is to help our lives better.
Barry (reporter): OK I know your time is valuable and I wanted to know how knee sleeves could be done better with 3 D weaving.
Missy: Let me help remind your readers that the main benefits of 3 D weaving technology are that we can weave any fabric designed for those applications where there is a lot of body movement such as knee sleeve, softer and lighter fabric with breath-ability feature due to weaving technology and more importantly you can provide a better lighter knee sleeve which can be worn for the longer duration.
Barry (reporter): Wow, there are so many benefits. In fact I did my homework before calling you and I agree with your assessment. Moving on, I love theory but I wanted to know if you have any first hand experience with 3 D woven fabric.
Missy: I have been fortunate to work for the Furious Fitwear Brands and I have been intimately engaged in designing new products such knee compression sleeves, elbow compression sleeves and ankle compression sleeves. In fact I don't know much about theory as I prefer practical experience over theory.
Barry (reporter): That's awesome so I am talking to the right person. Based on your practical experience, what are the main benefits you see in designing and manufacturing compression sleeves.
Missy: While designing products, I noticed that there is more flexibility with the fabric. It is much lighter too. The knee compression sleeve we designed for Furious Fitwear is extremely light, the fabric is breathable, it stretches in all the direction, provides a better grip, you can wear the sleeves for the longer duration and sleeves are easy to wash. Another important benefit that I want to emphasize is that it is comparable in terms of pricing with the conventional fabric. So you get all the benefits without paying anything extra.
Barry (reporter): I have noticed that still there are only a few manufacturers of knee compression sleeves using 3 D weaving technology. What's the main reason for this?
Missy: Like any other new technology, it needs a significant investment to replace the machines. Talking to our competition we noticed that many brands want to switch to 3 D Weaving Technology for their products but there are still few manufacturers who can provide you compression products at the reasonable cost. I believe over the time we will see more compression sleeve products in the market as more manufacturers replace their machines.
Barry (reporter): Thanks for everything and here is the last question for you. If anyone wants to know more about your Knee Compression Sleeves, how can they get more information.
Missy: Since our products are available in the USA only, anyone can check at Furious Fitwear Store and learn more from there. If you live outside the USA, we have no connections with any other suppliers. If you are OK, you can share our product picture also in your report for your readers.
Barry (reporter): Thanks Missy once again and I would be happy to share the product picture here for those who want to learn more about the knee compression sleeve.
While talking to sports folks, I noticed that many people are switching to suppliers who are using 3D Weaving technology for their knee sleeves.
In summary I noticed that the main benefits from various users perspective are as follow:
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