Born 1880 - Died June 21 1954
Patent No. 1,219,881
Swedish-born engineer Gideon Sundback improved on Whitcomb Judson’s work, making the zipper practical and commercially successful. Today, thousands of miles of zipper are manufactured daily.
Sundback increased the number of fastening elements from four to ten per inch, creating small teeth. He faced two rows of teeth opposite each other and added a slider to pull them together.
Sundback also developed the manufacturing machine and process for the new zipper. The “S-L” machine took a special Y-shaped wire and cut scoops from it, punching dimples to create teeth. Within the first year of production, the Universal Fastener Company was manufacturing hundreds of feet of fastener per day.