How a Circular Knitting Machine Works

Circular knitting machines are widely used in the textile industry for the production of weft-knitted fabrics. These machines work in a semi or fully-automated fashion and produce tube-shaped fabrics. In this blog post, we will discuss the components of a circular knitting machine and its functions.

Table of Contents

The Journey of Circular Knitting

The journey of circular knitting starts with a creel, which is used to place the yarn cone. The yarn is supplied to the machine through an aluminum tube from the cone. The positive feeder is a device that supplies the required amount of yarn to the needle with proper tension. The not-catcher minimizes any knots in the yarn. The magnetic tensioner maintains proper yarn tension, and the yarn pulley stores some extra yarn to ensure continuous supply to the machine. The upper side of the positive feeder has two driving pulleys, which get motion through the toothed belt. If any yarn breakage occurs, it is detected by a sensor that stops the machine automatically through its automatic brake detection system.

Yarn path of a circular knitting machine.
ourney of Circular Knitting

How a Circular Knitting Machine Works

Formation of Loop

The yarn enters the needle to form a loop through a feeder guide. The yarn is received by a needle and forms a loop by the action of a cam and sinker. Cams are the devices that convert the rotary machine drive into a suitable reciprocating action for the needles and other elements. The movement of each needle is obtained by means of cams acting on the refusing needle butts. The sinker is part of the machine that coordinates with the needle to create a stitch. The sinker pulls down the loop and holds it in place while the needle pushes the yarn into the loop. The sinkers are also designed to support the fabric once it is stitched so that it does not pull too much on the yarn.

Knitting Elements

A close-up shows how a circular weft knitting needles knit one after another in sequence for each yarn. Loops are formed horizontally by needles knitting around the cylinder, forming a tube. The knitted fabric is passed over a spreader mechanism through a take-up roll and is wound into a roll. This elliptical spreader distributes the take-up tension uniformly and enables the fabric to conform to a flat tube.

Various Knitting Elements for Socks Machines at best price in Jaipur
Knitting Elements

Inspection of Fabric

After the roll of fabric is cut, it is sent to an inspection machine to detect any faults in the fabric. The inspection machine detects faults in the fabric by scanning it for any irregularities or defects. Once the fabric passes the inspection process, it is ready for further processing, such as dyeing or printing.

The Importance of Circular Knitting Machines in the Textile Industry

Circular knitting machines have revolutionized the textile industry. They have made it possible to produce fabrics in a semi or fully automated fashion, making the process more efficient and cost-effective. These machines are widely used throughout the knitting industry for their productivity and user-friendliness. They can produce a wide range of fabrics, including jersey, rib, and interlock, among others.

Advantages of Using Circular Knitting Machines

Circular knitting machines offer several advantages over traditional flat knitting machines. They can produce tubular fabrics, which are more cost-effective as they eliminate the need for cutting and sewing. They can also produce fabrics of varying diameters, making them versatile and suitable for a wide range of applications. Additionally, circular knitting machines can produce fabrics at a faster rate, making them an ideal choice for high-volume production.

Types of Circular Knitting Machines

There are several types of circular knitting machines available in the market, each with its own unique features and capabilities. Some of the most common types include single-jersey machines, double-jersey machines, rib machines, and interlock machines. Single jersey machines are used to produce plain fabrics, while double jersey machines can produce fabrics with different patterns on both sides. Rib machines are used to produce fabrics with a distinct ribbed texture, while interlock machines produce fabrics with a double-layered structure.

Maintenance of Circular Knitting Machines

Like any other machinery, circular knitting machines require regular maintenance to ensure optimal performance and longevity. Regular cleaning of the machine parts, oiling of the needles, and replacing worn-out parts are some of the maintenance activities that need to be carried out regularly. It is also important to follow the manufacturer’s guidelines for maintenance and repair to avoid any unnecessary damage or downtime.

Future of Circular Knitting Machines

The future of circular knitting machines looks promising, with advancements in technology and automation. The industry is witnessing the development of new machines that can produce even more complex fabrics at a faster rate. There is also a growing demand for sustainable and eco-friendly fabrics, which is driving the development of circular knitting machines that use recycled yarns and reduce waste. With these advancements, the circular knitting industry is poised for growth and continued innovation.


Circular knitting machines are a vital component of the textile industry. They are highly productive and user-friendly, making them an ideal choice for fabric production. The circular knitting machine components discussed in this blog post work together to produce high-quality, tube-shaped fabrics. By understanding the functions of these components, we can gain a clearer understanding of how circular knitting machines work and how they are used in the textile industry.

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