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A brief history and human factors of Zippers
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A brief history and human factors of Zippers


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A brief history and human factors of Zippers

A brief history and human factors of Zippers

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  • 1. ‐submitted by   Praveen Uchil A brief history of Zippers A zipper i a slide f t i is lid fastener with ith two edges of teeth attached to a fabric tape. The teeth lock into a snug fit when they arc drawn together by a slide. When the slide is pulled back, the teeth separate. The zipper was invented by Whitcomb L. Judson. a Chicago. Illinois. mechanical engineer. to relieve the tedium of fastening by hand the fashionable high‐ buttoned boots of the time . Judson' fastener called th J d ' s f t ll d the Clasp Locker and patented in 1893. consisted of a movable guide that meshed together two sets of hooks and eyes. Judson also invented a machine to mass produce his fasteners cheaply. However: these  machines broke down  Slider engagement mechanism involves frequently and the Judson’s  interlocking of clasps along vertical to f t fasteners had a way of  h d f axis of motion vertical motion unlike spontaneously unfastening. modern day zippers
  • 2. Sundback ‘ s invention (1913) ( ) Sunback’s patent on separable fastener f t It was Gideon Sundback( 1880‐ 1956),  a Swedish engineer who developed the  first really practical and successful slide  fastener. Sundback ' s 1913 invention used  small interlocking teeth that were  flexible and remained locked together.  Sundback also invented efficient  machinery to produce improved  fastener cheaply.  fastener cheaply Although the slide fastener was now  ready to be mass produced  for wide  spread usage clothing manufacturers  continued to ignore it  except for one   which contracted  in 1918 to supply the  Detailed view showing manner of locking and g g United States Navy with flying suits  unlocking equipped wih the device. Judson' s  company suddenly had an order for  thousands of the fasteners. . Manufacturers began to realize how  useful the fastener could be. Soon it  useful the fastener could be Soon it appeared in gloves and  pouches.  In 1923 the B.F. Goodrich Company  added the slide fasteners to their  rubber galoshes calling this new  footwear design Zipper which from  f d i Zi hi h f then on became the popular name for  the fastener itself . Zippers finally appeared on clothing,  first in men's pants. and. in the late  1920s. In  women’s garments. g Today' s design is little changed from  Sundback’s original
  • 3. Human Factors in Zipper Design Typical Usage Scenario: When the user want to fasten or unfasten the zipper,  When the user want to fasten or unfasten the zipper he drags the pull tab along the chain. He may use his  other arm for  making a convenient and swift  movement. Product dimensions concerned to human factors:  Dimensions of puller tab:  Length, width, thickness of the puller tab should be  selected as such to accommodate proper gripping using  thumb and fore fingers. On the other hand the design   requires that in order to hide the zipper identity, its  dimensions should be as small as possible. di i h ld b ll ibl Length of tape (Chain):  Length of the tape should be as minimum as possible to  reduce the pulling effort required to zip. Force required to zip and unzip:  Components of a zipper Force required to zip and unzip should be minimum as  possible to reduce the effort required to move and local  straining of thumb and forefingers. Force required to hold and pull: Maximum  Locking Force that can be provided  between the teeth of the zippers depends on quality of  fit between the teeth and t yield  strength of the  material.  Application like zippers used in a canvas sling  pp pp g to help lift dolphins out of municipal aquariums require  very strong interlocking between the teeth.
  • 4. Human Factors in Zipper Design Probelms with existing zippers: Current Zippers that found in everyday  Current Zippers that found in everyday products, many of the times needs  both of  the hand to fasten or unfasten. This is because  when angle between left and right side of the  zipper becomes obtuse, they interfere with  side walls of the slider blocking the zipping  action. During this the user further tries to zip  by applying more force which results in  movement of zipper and the surrounding  cloth as a whole, making the scenario verser. Accidents: Another serious problem which could lead to  p adverse consequences is penis skin getting  caught in zipper. There are lot of instances of  such accident which  often  are not revealed.  Small children are more prone to such  accidents when they do not wear underwear. Scope for improvement: Presently available zippers needs  both of our hands to be used. If the zippers  Remedies for can be used effectively and smoothly in one  Penile zipper entrapment: hand it would be a remarkable innovation and  a simple and less threatening will have large market potential. approach using mineral oil is pp g Any modification in teeth Configu shown in above fig. ‐ration to prevent the penile entrapment  could be a very significant development in  zipper design.