Types of Thread Packages in garment industry

In order that thread should sew well, it must be presented to the machine in a satisfactory way. It must be possible to purchase it in economically large or small quantities, while still having the right number of separate package for use on multi-thread machines. It is sold by length rather than weight, and is available in a variety of types of package appropriate to the thread type and its end use.

  • Spools are the smallest package and are flangged bobbins, once made in wood but now always made in plastic. Although used to a small extent on slower industrial machines, especially in footwear and leather goods manufacture, they are largely used for domestic sewing. A relative short length of thread, usually 100 or 500m, is parallel wound on to the bobbin, spools are not suitable for delivering thread to high speed industrial machines, nor for textured threads.
  • Cops are small, cylendrical, flangeless tubes on to which thread is wound for stability. The lack of flanges facilitates regular offwinding from the top on industrial sewing machines, mainly lockstitch, their small diameter making them less well suited to the faster thread takeoff of machines such as overedgers. They usually contains length of 1000-2500m of thread and are popular size in fashion manufacturing where production runs in any one colour are short. They are suitable for cotton, spun polyester, spun nylon or core spun threads, but not for glace finish of fine filament threads where spillage from the package would be a problem.
  • Cones contain 5000m or more of soft or merserised cotton, spun polyester or core spun thread, crosswound for stability and good offwinding performance. they give troublefree thread delivery at intermittent or continuous high speed and this, combined with there long length capacity, makes them ideal for use on  class 400, 500, 600 and combination stitches machine where stops for rethreading needs to be minimized. cones are the ideal package  for conventional sewing threads in situation where thread consumption is high and production runs are long with limited shade changes. they are also well suited for automatic machines.
  • Vicones are parallel tubes or low-angled cones with an additional base in the form of a raised flange which may incorporate a small lip. they contain polished or continuous filament thread and are designed to contain any spillage that may occur in off winding these smooth threads with no snagging ang trapping when the slack thread is taken up.
  • Large package for use on  overedge and coverstitch machines can hold in excess of 20,000m of spun or corespun thread wound on large cones or tubes.
  • Containers are constructed to handle lively monofilament thread that would be difficult to control on standard package. an exceptionally large spool of thred is held within the container which can incorporate an extra lubricant applicator at the thrad-draw off point.
  • Cocoons are self supporting i.e. centerless thread package design for insertion in the shuttle of multi needle quilting machines and some types of embroidery machines.
  • Prewounded bobbins are percision-wound thread package which can replace metal bobbins on a variety of lock stitch machines. conventional bobbins in these machines are inconvenient and in efficient as time is lost in starting up an empty bobbin on its winder after removing a full one, thread tension and lengths are variable and faulty buildup of threads on the bobbin may cause jamming in the bobbin case. They also inhibit overspin during stitching, a particular problem on zig-zag stitching machines. prewound bobbins generally contains more thread and the length is guaranteed. thus in cases where bobbins runs out must be avoided, the number of seams that can be sewn with each bobbin can be determined and the almost empty bobbin is changed in time. Bobbin changing time is considerably reduced and smoother unwinding results from the initial precision winding. This improves efficiency and quality of production. A variety of thread types are available prewound and in a variety of sizes to fit most of the lockstitch machines. From some manufacturers, these packages are self supporting and have no metal, wood or paper support.

Choice of package is important if sewing is to be trouble-free and thread handling by the operator is to be minimized. Where a number of machines are involved in manufacturing a style and shade of the garment, enough thread packages of suitable size must be available without excess stock of  thread being required. Thus a small contract for which only a small quantity of thread is needed may present problems in supplying enough packages to run safety stitch machines which require five threads, especially since thread is normally purchased in box of say six, or ten packages. One answer is for a company to make use of a thread winding machine, which enables them to rewind cones as smaller that they can be spread around more machines, especially when the stock is running low.