Each material, each type of fabric requires a shuttle adapted in shape, weight, in form, or even a shuttle built especially to task.
Here are some of the latter. These are the arched shuttle, here referred to as a 'hand-shuttle', and the fly-shuttle, which is straight. Each of these two sorts of shuttle is provided with a cap made of iron or steel and which is conical in shape, and which is screwed onto or set solidly onto either wooden end of the shuttle. It forms an integral part of the shuttle so that no thread will catch on it in its progress across the shed.
arched shuttle is called 'hand shuttle' because it is
It is arched, so that in the course of describing its curved trajectory, the force of the worker's hand cannot knock the point of the shuttle against the teeth of the reed, which would result in the deterioration of the reed; and always so that it is the blunt convex part of the shuttle which brushed against the reed. This curve moreover has the advantage of being able to facilitate the work for the weaver, who catches the shuttle with greater ease than with a hand-thrown straight shuttle, due to the curved shuttle's tendency to get itself out of the open shud as it goes by the edge of the reed.
The flying shuttle,
said also straight shuttle,
Instead of being thrown by the hand, the shuttle is introduced into a sort of box ('shuttle box') of which one is placed at either extremity of the batten, and which is slightly longer than the shuttle itself. A wooden wedge ('rat') containing a leather loop whose purpose is to catch the tip of the shuttle as it slides into the shuttle box, and also to propel it back out of the shuttle box, slides longitudinally along the upper part of the shuttle box.
The upper face of this wooden wedge is attached to a cord, which in turn runs up along the top of the batten and comes down again to fasten to the rat of the shuttle box on the opposite side.. Tied to the centre of this cord is another cord, which has a pear-shaped knob hanging from it. The cord passes over a pulley fixed to the upper part of the batten.
As the weaver pulls sharply on this knob he is able to make the shuttle pass through the shed from one shuttle box to the other. The leather loop of the rat quite naturally catches the tip of the shuttle as it enters the shuttle box, and it is then immediately ready to send the shuttle back across the shed to the other side.
Translated by Alfred Eberle from San Francisco. Thanks to him.