No sustainability without innovation –
true to this motto, TINTEX and
BRÜCKNER strive for new paths together
The Portuguese textile company TINTEX Textiles S.A. and
the German textile machinery manufacturer BRÜCKNER Textile
Technologies GmbH & Co. KG make a big step into the future
together. A completely new developed process technology for
coating bi-elastic knitted fabric opens new markets and new
possibilities for both sides.
The modern textile company TINTEX is located in Villa Nova,
not far from the Spanish border in northern Portugal. The
company was founded in 1998 in the region of Porto. The product
range includes functional tricot fabrics for well-known fashion,
sports and lingerie brands. TINTEX is convinced that fashion can
truly make a difference in tackling climate change. That is why
their engineers are constantly developing new strategies and
environmentally friendly concepts throughout the whole
production process. The technologists' expertise covers the
entire textile supply chain, including dyeing and finishing
techniques as well as coatings.
General view of the new line at TINTEX in Portugal
“No sustainability without
True to this motto, TINTEX is constantly researching for
fabric innovations to develop and produce intelligent,
functional and high-performance textiles. To round off the
concept, a few years ago it was decided to cooperate with the
German textile machinery manufacturer BRÜCKNER. Their product
range includes machines and complete lines for coating and
finishing of textiles, technical textiles, nonwovens and floor
coverings. With their own production site in the south of
Germany, completely rebuilt in 2018, BRÜCKNER has become even
more flexible and competitive. The family-run company was
founded in 1949 and is today managed in the second generation by
Regina Brückner and her husband Axel Pieper. Still valid today,
the values and visions of the company founder are the key to
success: the production of high-quality lines, the development
of sustainable and innovative technologies and the competent and
comprehensive advice of their customers.
Since both companies, TINTEX and BRÜCKNER, share the same
philosophy, the basis for constructive and goal-oriented product
development was quickly established. The vision of TINTEX was to
be able to achieve completely new effects on bi-elastic knitwear
and to produce fabrics that did not even exist before. This was
followed by numerous tests in the Technology Centre at BRÜCKNER
in Leonberg and on a BRÜCKNER line in an institute for textile
and process engineering near Stuttgart. So a new, revolutionary
line concept was worked out together, which has unbeatable
benefits especially with regard to the requirements of
temperature uniformity, the thermal treatment of synthetic fibre
blends and other constructive issues. Even very difficult
knitted fabric with high elastane content can now be directly
coated or functionalized. Until now, such coatings were only
possible in an indirect coating process.
Screen coating unit
The heart of the new line is the proven, but constantly
further developed and optimized POWER-FRAME stenter frame dryer.
The inlet and outlet components are specially designed for
sensitive fabric and ensure a tensionless fabric run. A special,
newly developed coating unit is integrated in the infeed stand
of the stenter frame. Due to its variable design, two different
application processes are possible on the same line. In the
so-called screen coating process, water-based pastes and stable
or unstable foams are applied onto the fabric with high
precision by means of a driven, cylindrical screen and a
squeegee system integrated in the screen.
For paste coating, the machine parameters can be adjusted in
such a way that a single-side coating is possible even on light
knitwear made of cotton or viscose, provided the paste is of a
suitable viscosity. For the stable foam coating, the coating
medium is mixed to foam with an exact foam/liter weight of 150
to 300 g/l. With an integrated feed pump, this foam can be
precisely dosed and applied to the textile through the screen.
Also in the case of unstable foam coating, the coating medium is
foamed up with a mixer and applied to the textile in exact
doses. Here the foam/liter weight is 30 to 100 g/l.
As the unstable foam collapses shortly after leaving the
screen, a single-side functionalization with a very low pick-up
of less than 10-20 % can be achieved. This is a minimum
application with the corresponding benefits, e.g. considerable
energy and thus cost savings in the subsequent drying process.
If you want to coat somewhat more stable fabric or apply higher
coating weights, the unit can be quickly and easily converted
from screen coating to a knife-over-cylinder system. The counter
pressure roller is then used as coating cylinder.
Infrared dryer at the machine outlet
A laminating/embossing calender integrated in the outfeed of
the stenter allows various effects to be achieved on the fabric,
e.g. a leather grain. If the applied stable foam coating has a
certain layer thickness, this effect can be achieved after the
drying passage in the laminating calender by means of a fed
release paper or an appropriate embossing roller. Even with
sensitive, directly coated knitted fabric, this calender can be
used to apply e.g. a film, a membrane or a second textile web
onto the fabric. For this purpose, the calender is additionally
equipped with an electric short-wave infrared dryer.
For simple heat-setting processes a special roller has been
developed which can be inserted into the coating unit instead of
the screen and thus acts as the upper infeed roller. Even very
tension-sensitive knitwear can be run with an overfeed of up to
60% before heat-setting.
This new multifunctional line can therefore be used for
heat-setting, drying and coating processes. It can be used to
manufacture products comparable to those previously produced
with indirect coating - but without having to rely on
cost-intensive release paper. At TINTEX in Portugal, production
on this line has already been running for some time and research
into completely new types of textiles is continuing. At Munich
Fabric Start, TINTEX even won the Hightex Award with such newly
developed products, as well as the Innovation Award at
Techtextil in Frankfurt.
BRÜCKNER is very proud to have customers like TINTEX who act
with foresight and do not strive for short-term profit
optimization. The goal is always to think and act with a
long-term perspective, because this is the only way how BRÜCKNER
and their customers can be successful in the long run.