At this year’s Techtextil show, German textile machinery maker Groz-Beckert displayed a Mercedes E-Class T-model specially prepared so that nearly all of the technical textiles in and around it were visible. The exhibit at the 276 square meter booth was named TexCar and attracted roughly 2,600 visitors from 60 countries.
The TexCar demonstrated the textile end products that can be made with Groz-Beckert products. The Mercedes E-Class T-model was completely disassembled and cut open at the crucial parts. The finished TexCar unveiled and made visible almost all textile applications. It showed at which parts in a modern car nonwovens, knitted or woven fabrics or tufted products play an important role.
On top of this, the car stood on a bridge section, made of textile-reinforced concrete. A video explained the car in more detail. It demonstrated the functions of the textile elements in the car. Another video featured the development of the TexCar from the planning, to the cut, to the finished exhibit. Both films will soon be available on the Groz-Beckert website.
The TexCar sprang surprises, since textiles can be found in a car where one would not expect them. One example is the cut open carbon brakes where nonwovens can be found. Another example is the safety belt. The woven polyester band has linked belt edges, and the bar tacking is a sewing operation.
In addition to the TexCar exhibit, an "insertion competition" with the company’s new NeedleMaster was organized at its booth. The three fastest participants were rewarded with prizes.
The NeedleMaster is a piece of equipment for nonwovens manufacturers that enables an efficient insertion of needles into the needle boards. The insertion can be performed at least three times faster than by hand, depending on the needle board spacing. In order to show how fast one person can insert the needles with this system, Groz-Beckert hosted the insertion competition. More than 40 participants tried to insert 140 needles into a needle board row as fast as possible. In the end, with a time of 1 minute and 8 seconds, Fabian Wolf (TU Dresden) won the first prize, an iPhone 5. The second prize, an iPad, went to Fabrice Lorenzi (Faurecia), and the third prize, an iPad mini, went to Daniel Toncelli (Laviosa Chimica Mineraria).