From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
WikiProject Textile Arts (Rated Start-class, Mid-importance)
WikiProject icon This article is within the scope of WikiProject Textile Arts, a collaborative effort to improve the coverage of textile arts on Wikipedia. If you would like to participate, please visit the project page, where you can join the discussion and see a list of open tasks.
Start-Class article Start  This article has been rated as Start-Class on the quality scale.
 Mid  This article has been rated as Mid-importance on the importance scale.

Article name[edit]

Wouldn't it cause less confusion to change the article on the clothing fastener from zip to zipper? We'd also save on disambiguation... --Uncle Ed 19:06, 25 Aug 2003 (UTC)

Done. - Patrick 19:52, 25 Aug 2003 (UTC)

Isn't "Zippers cost only a fraction of the total cost of the garment. However, if the zipper fails, the whole garment is wasted. Therefore, it is very important to choose a very good quality zipper, even if it costs a few cents more." a matter of POV or badly worded. Also the use of cent on this page (American) and Pants (Not the same meaning in British English) is dubious. EAi 01:23, 19 Jun 2005 (UTC)


Regarding earlier comments on disambiguation and changing this article from 'Zip' to 'Zipper', this would seem a little strange.

The English usage of the word is "Zip", Americanisation (note the usage of 's' not 'z') has made usage of the word "Zipper" more common - an unfortunate and needless amendment to the language.

Surely - as this is the English edition of Wikipedia - the article should be changed back and listed under the term 'Zip', with 'Zipper' used for disambiguation for those who do not speak the traditional form of English.

If we must be exposed to the Americanisations of the traditional language, then surely these should be as supporting material to the definitive 'Oxford English' - alternatively, there may be scope for which could house such examples of language abuse. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 11:45, 15 November 2005 (UTC)

Do you have some sort of superiority/inferiority/snob complex or something? Your complaints and opinions on "Americanisms" and "traditional" language is trivial and unnecessary, and the problems you stated can be easily fixed if people like you copy-edited instead of complaining. I find it annoying when people such as you complain about these sorts of thing. If you care so much, then go ahead and change it. BE BOLD - M0rphzone (talk) 23:22, 24 April 2012 (UTC)
I'm a Canadian who uses mostly British spellings over American spellings when given the choice (i.e., esses instead of zeds in words like 'Americanisation', as you mentioned), but I think you're worrying a bit too much over this. "Language abuse"? Just because one country uses a different word for something than another country doesn't make it wrong or abusive. English isn't the same between any two countries, or even cities. British English may be the most common, but it doesn't make it any more "right" than American English. And as Imarsman noted below, the English edition of Wikipedia isn't restricted to British English terms and spellings. It's all English, even in its many variations.
(That being said, I really don't care if the article is called "Zip" or "Zipper" or whatever - I just think it's kind of offensive to accuse Americans of abusing the English language just because they have a different word for something than most of the world.) --DearPrudence 22:03, 3 December 2006 (UTC)


As the zipper seems to have been invented, patented, and initially manufactured in North America the term "zipper", if it's an "American" one, seems to be the appropriate one to use. Why would the UK term be the most appropriate? serves the English language as a whole, not the UK version of the English language. By the way, I'm not an American, I'm a Canadian who lives a few kilometres from Gideon Sundback's original Lightning Fastener Company factory in St. Catharines, Ontario. Imarsman 19:49, 23 January 2006 (UTC)

Huge Zipper[edit]

I think it would be a good idea if examples of the largest and smallest zippers were included (I would be interested to know if zipper patents extend into nanotechnology).

On a personal note, I've been looking for a source for a particularly large zipper (the largest I have seen to date). Unfortunately, my searching has not been able to find a good source. The only example of this zipper that I have is the following:

As you can see for the picture, the dimensions on this zipper are roughly one and a half to two inches wide for the zipper head and with the individual teeth at around one quarter of an inch. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) Sep 16, 2007 05:19:02 (UTC)

Zip or Zipper[edit]

Apparently, the trademark taken out on the name 'zipper' in 1925 applied to a boot with zips, not to the "lightning fastener" itself, which was at first called a zip.

Both could be considered correct, both stem from the verb 'zip'... zipper isn't an Americanisation of zip, and zip isn't an Anglicisation of ziper.

I vote that a separate is formed, so American and English words can live side by side in harmony. Anon, 23:43, 23 April 2011 (GMT) — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk)

Zipper animation[edit]

I was Browzing the commons when i came acrose this sweet animation. Is it apropriat to but moving animations in an artilce? This Zipper animation seems like a must have for the artivle but then again sombody may object to animations in an artile so i am bringing it to the talk page. I did not make it--E-Bod 02:47, 28 March 2006 (UTC)

This Zipper animation is a better link to use. I am proposing moving it into the article other than just a link. Good idea? Bad Idea?--E-Bod 03:12, 13 April 2006 (UTC)

- i think that the animation looks great. It's very informative, simple to follow and relevant to the topic. ~Neph — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 02:36, 3 May 2006 (UTC)

I think this one looks much better: [1] Greetings from the German Wikipedia! -- 13:33, 26 August 2006 (UTC)

Can someone please make a reverse animation of the wonderful zipper? It should be quite easy and would be informative for the spatially challenged. Xiner 17:05, 3 December 2006 (UTC)

What is Excoffier zipper?[edit]

I tried to find external reference about "Excoffier zipper" which is mentioned in the History section. However, I could not find any reliable resource in the internet with google, yahoo, msn. The closest result which is not original or quote from wikipedia is about Excoffier's zipper algorithm in computational biology. Please check this piece of information. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Hoangmit (talkcontribs) 16:15, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

Birthplace of the Zipper Dispute[edit]

There is some disagreement in this article as to the birthplace of the zipper. In this article, it is claimed that the zipper was invented in Meadville, PA by Gideon Sundback. In the Gideon Sundback article, however, it is claimed that the zipper was invented in St. Catharines, Ontario, Canada. This claim is also supported in the St. Catharines, Ontario article. In this very article, a TV special is mentioned which names the zipper the greatest Canadian invention. So, was the zipper founded in St. Catharines, or in Meadville? CanadErik 05:05, 28 January 2007 (UTC)CanadErik

FWIW Sundback's zipper patent (US patent # 1219881) says that he lived in Meadville. (Of course that only indicates where he lived when he filed the patent, not necessarily where he lived when he did the inventing.)Anonymous55 18:01, 28 January 2007 (UTC)
Upon further research, both appear to be wrong. According to what is by far the most detailed source I could find - History of Northwestern Pennsylvania by Joseph Riesenman, Jr., Part 46, pages 9-10, Sundback's invention, called the "hookless fastener", occurred in 1913 while he was working for the Automatic Hook & Eye Company in Hoboken, NJ. Subsequently the "Hookless Fastener Company" was founded in Meadville, PA, specifically to manufacture Sundback's invention. The idea that the invention occurred in St. Catherines, Ontario appears to be a misunderstanding derived from the fact that Sundback was later the president of the Lightning Fastener Company of St. Catherines, but that wasn't until after 1925.Anonymous55 19:28, 28 January 2007 (UTC)
Upon even further research, apparently it's a bit more complex. According to this article (subscription required) from the Hayward, California Daily Review, Aug 13 1972, the version of the zipper Sundback invented in 1913 was a failure due to poor durability, prompting Sundback to design a new one in 1914 called the "Hookless No. 2". That was after the Hookless Fastener Company was already operating, so it would have been in Meadville rather than Hoboken. So whether the zipper was invented in Hoboken or Meadville depends on whether you consider the Hookless No. 1 or the No. 2 the true "zipper".Anonymous55 20:05, 28 January 2007 (UTC)
About this last point, there ought not be any debate. Hookless #2 (USP 1,219,881, Filed Aug 27, 1914, issued March 20, 1917) is the foundation patent of the "modern zipper." Hookless #1 was an unsuccessful departure from the C-Curity/Plako approach, having a row of spring jaws along one side of the fastener that engaged a bead sewn on the other. The slider wedged the jaws apart and guided the bead into and out of engagement. Because the #1's slider ran over the tape, wear and fraying of the fabric were unacceptably high. Hookless #1 was never produced.
There really isn't much room to debate the "where" either. The company's transition from Automatic Hook and Eye to Hookless and the move to Meadville (which was initially outfitted to produce the Plako) were complete by the fall of 1913. Hookless #2 prototypes were made sometime in the spring of 1914, workable production machinery by that fall. [Friedel]
QuatSkinner 19:03, 2 April 2007 (UTC)
I've now updated the article to reflect the new information.Anonymous55 09:15, 30 January 2007 (UTC)

"Reverse Coil Zipper"[edit]

Google has many instances of the term"Reverse Coil Zipper", but Wikipedia doesn't know what it is. (And neither do I.) 04:02, 27 April 2007 (UTC)

A reverse coil zipper is exactly that - the coil is on the reverse (back) side of the zipper and the slider is engineered to work on the flat side of the zipper (normally the back, now the front). Unlike an invisible zipper where the coil is also on the back, the reverse coil shows stitching on the front side and the slider will accommodate a variety of pulls (the invisible zipper requires a small, tear-drop pull due to the small slider attachment). Water resistant zippers are generally configured as reverse coil so that the pvc coating can cover the stitching. The trend toward exposed zippers have popularized the use of reverse coils on novelty tapes. Examples may be seen at: (talk) 23:36, 13 July 2012 (UTC)

Company promotion?[edit]

Maybe I'm reading too much into this, but this part

"A special type of metal zipper is made from pre-formed wire, usually brass but sometimes other metals too. Only a few companies in the world have the technology. TALON is the pioneer of this zipper in the world. These type of pre-formed metal zippers are mainly used in high grade jeanswear, workwear, etc., where high strength is required and zippers need to withstand tough washing."

together with the link to "Talon Zippers "The Original American Zipper"" seems like inappropriate promotion of that company to me. If no one objects, I'll make it less so.Crana 01:29, 13 May 2007 (UTC)

can anyone explain why YKK make 90% of the zippers, but SBS zippers are used in the example image? can we just use the brand that is most typical? (talk) 05:22, 24 April 2012 (UTC)

Vandalism on History Section[edit]

The first paragraphs of the History section appear to have been vandalized. Unfortunately, there have been several intervening edits, even including spelling & grammar corrections to the vandals' text, so it's hard to tell what should be there. Could the original contributors take a look?--Theodore Kloba 22:05, 26 September 2007 (UTC)

Double section.[edit]

Why is there two different sections named History of the Zipper? This makes the article confusing and annoying to read. 04:41, 29 September 2007 (UTC)

What about Ziploc-type zippers?[edit]

I have seen garments with a zipper-style closure made from two continuous beads. One is shaped like a plus in cross section, the other is c-shaped, with an inside that forms to the plus. When these are put together, they hold closed. And there is a shuttle that runs from end from end that does and undoes the bead for you. It's essentially a souped-up version of the type of closure found on a Ziploc-bag. It shares the problem with those closures that once the closed side pops open, the opening expands in size with little effort (like a run in fabric) unlike a true zipper.

Is this not a form of a zipper? If it were not, why are these called zipper storage bags? Maybe this should be mentioned here and zipper storage bags linked to. Bollinger 20:35, 22 October 2007 (UTC)

Agree with the above, there is a wikipedia entry which could be linked to, I also think there are other types of toothless zippers in use as waterproof fastenings. (talk) 04:07, 5 February 2011 (UTC)

Clergy opposition?[edit]

I can't find anything to support the vague claims of opposition by clergy as being a cause of delayed acceptance. Did someone just make this fact up? Perhaps the paragraph should be moved to limbo until support can be found. (talk) 02:38, 26 January 2008 (UTC)

Japan vs. China[edit]

I'm curious as to the source that claimed 68% of the world's zippers came from Japan. The Guardian implied that China made 80% of the zippers, so there's obviously a conflict. Someone oughta get to the bottom of the barrel here. — Rickyrab | Talk 03:55, 5 November 2007 (UTC)

Note also that YKK claims to have the world's largest zipper facility, located in the USA:
Manufacturing facilities in 68 countries; the world’s largest zipper manufacturing center, at the Macon, Georgia facility, where they have 900 employees.[2] —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 02:04, 9 February 2008 (UTC)

Coil zippers[edit]

Most modern zippers are plastic coil zippers. The article does state this, but it is buried. We need diagrams and pictures of coil zippers.

It seems that there are three kinds of zippers: metal teeth, plastic teeth, and plastic coil. It seems like there are no metal coils -- true? Why? It seems like metal zippers always have metal sliders, but that plastic zippers can have metal or plastic sliders. It would be good if the article brought out these basic facts more clearly.

The teeth or coils are sometimes called elements. - (talk) 02:31, 9 February 2008 (UTC)


It is very difficult to locate information about zipper sizes. Please add to the article!

The most common sizes are #3, #5, #8, and #10. Some sources say that these numbers correspond to the width of the zipper in mm. Which logically would also correspond to the width of the opening of the slider?

Another source says, for YKK:

Width of a closed zipper (not including the zipper tape)
#3 coil = .165 in ~~ 5/32 in
#5 coil = .275 in ~~ 17/64 in   #5 tooth = .225 in ~~ 7/32 in
#8 coil = .284 in ~~ 9/32
#10 coil = .417 in ~~ 27/64   #10 tooth = .335 in ~~ 11/32 in

It seems that parts may not be interchangeable between brands, and that the only way to be certain the parts will work fully is to buy a zipper and slider together. - (talk) 03:01, 9 February 2008 (UTC)

Broken links[edit]

the link to the patent that is within the paragraph doesn't lead to anything. Neither does the external link to the radio show. whoever originaly put the up should see if there was a typo, or if the things they have linked to have been taken down —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:38, 4 January 2009 (UTC)


Ok i live in st.catharines ontario which is in truth the place where it was invented.

the first zipper factory was even here. this needs to be mentioned somewhere — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 22:37, 1 August 2011 (UTC)

History: Martin Othmar Winterhalter[edit]

Works of Swiss Inventor Martin Othmar Winterhalter is missing in article. (talk) 19:08, 7 May 2013 (UTC)

Double zipper[edit]

What about a section of double zippers, both luggage and jacket types? — Preceding unsigned comment added by Palacesblowlittle (talkcontribs) 00:59, 4 December 2013 (UTC)

Thank you Wikipedia![edit]

I have no credit card (nor credit)but if I did I would give you so much it would make you smile. You have been the light in my darkness, and the savior of questions. I need you and love you. I implore you never to stop what you are doing. Happy Holidays and nights. MMMMMMMMMMMMMWWWAAAAAA. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 06:04, 14 December 2014 (UTC)