April 16/23, 2018: Volume 33, Issue 22
By Mara Bollettieri
Imagine a sample dyeing device that allows an operator to quickly color carpet samples in continuous format and detect defective or contaminated yarn. Thanks to Beyer Engineering, maker of the Microdye, this is now a reality.
According to Robert Beyer, proprietor of Beyer Engineering, Microdye can continuously dye 1 linear foot samples up to 13 ½ feet wide in about 10 minutes. The idea, he said, is to allow manufacturers to ensure the accuracy of their color and the quality of their goods efficiently before the full-scale production commences.
How it works: Microdye has a unique moving applicator head that cascades a metered dye solution onto a static piece of carpet sample. The dyestuff then is exhausted in the fiber via a pivoting overhead steamer. Afterwards, the sample is rinsed, extracted and dried. What’s unique about this piece of equipment, according to Beyer, is the “reverse application method” compared to continuous dyeing ranges. The moving applicator and stationary sample configuration of Microdye eliminates the need for the sample piece to be “tailed” to get in and out of the steamer, and it allows sample sizes to be flexible; any length up to a full width.
“When I initially designed this machine, it was only for catching the defective, contaminated or wrong threaded yarn which used to [take a lot of time] when it went through undetected,” Beyer explained. “These issues are still around, and the methods used by the industry are still not very effective.”
Beyer pointed out the samples dyed by Microdye are production quality, not just ring stained, thereby revealing the true dye absorbency of the fiber from which they are constructed. “After I was able to control the dye output of Microdye precisely, it became a very versatile tool capable of matching any color the continuous production machinery produces. And it does so with the same formula the production machines use.”
Other innovative features of the unit allow users to adjust steaming and drying temperatures. These functions can be timed as well. Also, the unit can be connected to plant steam or utilize a standalone electric steam generator when plant boilers are down, but sampling must go on. Not only does it save time, Beyer reports, but it also saves money wasted on improper methods of sampling. Instead of dyeing multiple color checks and dye headers on the production machine, Microdye can churn them out in advance and prevent production slowdowns.
“This machine will make life a lot easier for people around the country in dye houses,” Beyer stated. “First, it’s a great money saver; and second, it’s the right tool for the right job. It will give the end user a competitive edge.”
The introductory price of Microdye is $128 (excluding the optional standalone electric steam generator). Power requirements are 110V AC for most of its functions and 3 x 220V AC for the dryer.