Important Zipper Terms Everyone Should Know

If you are designing pieces that require zippers, it will always bea good idea to be familiar with the different zipper terms that are currently used in the zipper sales industry. This will not only makeit easier every time you work with zipper companies,but it will also give you serious insight into the unique world of zippers as a whole.

Here are some zipper terms that everyone should be familiar with:

Auto-Lock Slider

It is a type of slider with a locking pin within the slider body. The pin prevents the slider from moving freely on the zipper chain. Theauto-lock slider is most often used on apparel, specifically on the center front zipper on the back center of dresses or outerwear.

Closed Bottom

Also known asclosed-end, a closed bottom zipper is typically used on pants or other applications where the zipper simply opens one part of the design. These zippers will open but these don’t separate unlike separating bottom zippers.

Gauge Size

Every time you hear the terms zipper size or gauge size, these refer to the teeth’s size. Depending on the final application or design or the specific use of the piece, this will determine the gauge size of the zipper that should be used.

Long Chain

Long-chain is known in other names such as continuous chain, zippers by the yard, and zippers on a roll.Long-chain is the zipper teeth and tape on a roll of the measurement specified by the client. Most contractors of handbag sewingbuy zippers in a long chain form as this allows them to cut any length they require and assemble the stops and sliders to meet the design requirements.

Non Lock Sliders

These sliders have no locking mechanism within the slider body. It is the slider most frequently used on handbags since the absence of the locking mechanism allows the slider to move freely with a seamless and smooth action when zipping.

Separating Bottom

Known in other names such as separating zipper, separating end, and open-end, separating zippers are the zippers most commonly used in jackets or other functions where one part of the zipper must totally separate from the other.


The pully thingy or zipper car,the slider is that actual part that closes and opens the zipper. Some people often mistakenly assume that the slider is the zipper, but the truth is that the zipper pertains to the entire zipper including the slider, teeth, and stops.

Bottom and Top Stops

Also known as thestoppers, the bottom and top stops of the zipper are used to prevent the slider from coming off the zipper.

Two Way Separating Zipper

Sometimes referred to as thedouble zipper, these zippers are a separating bottom zipper with two sliders working in opposing directions. These zippers are historically used for long coats. If the wearer has to sit down, they need to zip up the bottom slider to create somelegroom.

Sinceshorter-length jackets are now common, however, there is really no reason to usetwo-way separating zippers. This is done more as a traditional nod.