Apparel Science

Know Your Needle

Sewing Needle is one of the most important tools for garment manufacturing. All of us are aware with the importance of a correct needle type for a product. In below article we will discuss about the different parts of a needle. 


The beveled end allows easy insertion in the needle bar.


The upper thick part of the sewing machine needle is called the shank. It is the heaviest part of the needle and is designed to minimize needle movement by attaching it firmly to the needle bar
Home sewing needles have a flat, round side to assist in always having the needle in the correct position
Industrial machine needles have a completely round shaft is used to know the direction to put a needle into the machine



The shaft is the narrow part of the needle which supports the functional parts of the needle. It is the area from the bottom of the shank to the point. The shaft contains the groove, scarf, eye and point of the needle. Needle sizes refer to the diameter of the shaft.


The sloping area transitioning between the shank and blade. SCHMETZ color codes appear on the shoulder.


Needle size is determined by the blade diameter (i.e., size 75 is .75mm)


A groove is the side of the needle leading to the eye. A groove is the place for the thread to lay into the needle. It protects the thread by hiding it as it passes through the fabric to join the bobbin thread. Some needles have exaggerated grooves to protect the thread when sewing on particularly dense fabric. A needle is too fine for the size of the thread used will result in inconsistent stitches and broken threads. You can use your fingernail and feel the groove to understand why a different size thread would be needed for heavier threads.


The eye of the needle is the hole through which the thread passes. As the size of the eye increases, the size of the shaft increases to support it. The eye of the needle carries the thread so that the machine can keep forming stitches . The size of the eye can vary and works in conjunction with the groove of the needle. Too small or too large an eye for the needle can cause your thread to shred and break.

Point & Tip

The point of the needle is the first contact with the fabric and is responsible for how the needle pierces the fabric. It is a primary distinguishing feature of the needle. Points can be sharp or ball or universal. The angle of the point can be acute or slender. The point can be centred or eccentric. All are designed for aspecific purpose and give the operator unique applications. Length, shape and size vary according to needle types.


The scarf is a groove out of one side of the needle. It is a cut away portion on the back of the needle just above the eye. It allows the bobbin case hook to intersect with the upper thread and forms stitches. The shape and position of the scarf increases the consistency of stitching with various threads and fabrics.



Ref/Sources :- schmetz , singer , groz beckert etc.

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