chapter  5
7 Pages

Electronically Controlled Knitting Machinery: New Enterprise in an Old Industry

WithChristopher Layton

The basic machine is, in a sense, a machine tool, plus some 20 per cent of its value in the form of the highly specialized needles, cylinders and elements where the skill of the knitting machine technician comes in. The basic problem is lack of the kind of skilled labour still needed in knitting machinery manufacture. The Bentley Engineering Group, owned by Sears Holdings, has brought together a number of companies over a period of time and consists of twelve member companies of which the principal three are William Cotton, Bentley Engineering and Wildt, Mellor, Bromley. The most interesting challenge to Wildt, Mellor, Bromley's knitting predominance comes from Franz Morat, a south German businessman. The Bentley Group have reacted to the challenge by working with Newmark Engineering, an electronic company with a background in aviation and weapons control, on their own electronic system.