The Tobacco Tying Machine

The tobacco tying machine played a significant role in the mechanization of the tobacco industry, and Bill played a small but important part in its development. Up until its invention tobacco was tied onto sticks by very skilled (and very fast!) women. It was hard, back-breaking work, and for many years numerous people had tried and failed to come up with an automated solution.

There is more to the story of how the tobacco tying machine came into being. I will elaborate a bit later.

Click on the picture for a larger view
View From Above
A high resolution TIF file (13 Meg) of this image can be downloaded from here.

The tying machine was based on a regular sewing machine – complete with needle, looper and thread. The main difference is that the needle was very large (about 8″ long and 1/4″ in diameter), the thread actually heavy duty rayon twine, and the looper very large.

Bill shot a short 16mm film of the tying machine that he designed being used on a farm in 1962.

Click on the picture to watch the video
Tobacco Tying Machine Video

The machine in the picture at the top of this page was a special machine built for the Imperial Tobacco Company. The image was taken in the Reynolds tobacco factory in Delhi, Ontario.

As always, if anyone has more details or information about the TTC tying machine and the role Bill played in its development, please post a message with details.

Posted by: Ron Warris | 12-03-2005 | 10:12 PM
Posted in: Images | Kelsey Manufacturing | Latest Posts

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