Tuesday 30 June 2009

Worsted Yarn Production - Flow Chart

Sunday 28 June 2009

Manufacturing Process of Woollen Yarn

Flow Chart of Woollen Yarn Manufacturing

Monday 22 June 2009

Why Cotton Shrinks

Why Cotton Shrinks

Cotton has the property of swelling in water and this effects shrinking when drying. Also the mechanical stresses, strain and tension, during spinning and weaving etc., when released causes the fabric to shrink.

The cotton fabric, when put in water, swelling occurs and rearrangement of internal forces takes place. The fibres will become free from tensionless state. These are the resons for shrinkage.

In case of a fabric, the warp yarns are under much strain due to interlacement than the weft yarns. The warp yarn shrinkage will be more than weft.

to overcome this, the fabric is extended in widthwise to some extent in the stenter machine during the finishing process. Then it is subjected to preshrink process.

How to Improve Colorfastness in Vat Dyeing

Colorfastness Problems in Vat Dyeing- Reasons and Remedies

Causes of Poor Colorfastness in Vat Dyeing

Frequent addition of colors in the dye bath to match the shade. It disturbs the equlibrium between colors and chemicals.

- Improper oxidation

- Improper washing

- Some peculiar colors such as blue and brown also leads to this defect.

- Hardness in the water used

- Mixing of incompatible colors

- Usage of large quantities of reducing agent and alkali

- Improper temperature

- Improper wringing of the cloth

- Faults in the machine

- Not using essential chemicals such as dispersing agent or leveling agents.

- Dyeing in a finished cloth ( Resin or Silicon Finish)

- Improper preparation of the cloth or thread for dyeing ( Like not removing impurities or size)

How to improve colorfastness in Vat Dyeing

1. Dont frequently add colors during dyeing

2. Ensure proper reduction clearance

3. Ensure proper oxidation

4. Choose right colors and chemicals

5. Control Temperarue

6. Use soft water

7. Add Dispersing or levelling agent as per need

8. Dont redye finished cloths

9. Ensure proper washing after dyeing.

10. Treat the material with small amount of Ammonia and Sodium Hydrosulphite

11. Treat the cloth with large amount of reducing agent and alkali. This method can be resorted to if there is some bleeding in the colors.

Sunday 21 June 2009

The Measures of Fiber Length

The Measures of Fiber Length

1. Mean Length: Numerical Average length of fibres of given population of fibre.

2. Upper Quartile: Length for which 75% of all observed values are lower or 25% higher by weight or number

3. Modal Length: The most frequently occuring length of fiber.

4. Median Length: Length Below and above which 50% of fibres lie.

5. Half Fall Value: The fiber length higher than modal length having half the modal frequency by wt. (Group length longer than mode with frequency equal to 1/2 of mode.)

6. Effective Length: Upper quartile of numerical length distribution from which some of the shortest fibers, having length less than half of effective length are cutailed or eliminated.

7. short fiber %: It is the % of fibers having length less than 1/2 of the effective length value.

8. Uniformity Ratio: Ratio of 50% span length to 2.5 % span length.

9. Span Length: It is the distance that can be spanned by specified percentage of fibers in a test beard.

10. Irregularity: Percentage by weight fo fibers in a sample which are shorter than 3/4th of the mode.

11. Dispersion %: inter quartile range expressed as % of effective length.

How to Determine the Color Fastness of Textile material to Dry Cleaning

How to Determine the Color Fastness of Textile material to Dry Cleaning

Technical Specifications:


1.To determine colorfastness to drycleaning a suitable mechanical device consisting of water bath containing a rotatable shaft which supports, radially, glass or stainless steel containers ( 75+-5mm diameter x 125+-10mm high) of approximately 550+-50 ml. capacity, being 45+-10mm high from the centre of the shaft should be used. The Shaft/container assembly is rotated at a speed of 40+-2 rev per minutes.The temperature of the water bath is thermostatically controlled to maintain the test solvent at 30 deg +-2 celcius.

2. Stainless stell disc of 30+-2mm x 3+-0.5mm, smooth and free from rough edges of mass 20+-2 gm.

3. Undyed cotton twill cloth of unit area 270+-70 gsm, free from finishing and cut into samples of size 12 cm x 12 cm

4. Grey scale for evaluating change in color and staining.

5. Glass tubes of diameter 25 mm

Preparation of the Specimen

For a fabric sample, take a specimen of size 10cm x 4cm from the sample representing the lot.

If the material to be tested is sewing thread, make a wick of parallel length 10 cm long and about 0.5 cm in diameter, tied near both ends.


Prepare a bag with inside dimension of 10cm x 10 cm using the undyed cotton twill cloth by sewing together two squares of this cloth around three sides.

Place the specimen and 12 stell discs inside the bag and close the bag.

Place the bag in the container and add 200 ml of Perchloroethylene or any other suitable solvent at 30 +- 2 deg C

Fix the container in the mechanical device maintained at 30+-2 deg C and run the machine for 30 minutes.

Remove the bag from the container, withdraw the specimen and dry the specimen in air at a temperature not exceeding 60+-5 deg C.

Evaluate the change in color of the tested test specimen with grey scale, after attaining normal moisture content.

Filter the solvent remaining in the container through filter paper and compare the color of the filtered solvent with that of unused solvent in the glass tube placed in from the white card using transmitted light by means of grey scale for assessing staining.

In case of doubt in the color fastness rating as assessed by an observer, the assessment should be done by at least three observers and the overall average rating should be reported.


Report the numerical rating for change in color of the test specimen and the numerical rating for staining of the solvent. Also report the solvent used for the test.

Saturday 20 June 2009

Listing Defect in Vat Dyeing

Listing Defect in Vat Dyeing and the Precautions to Prevent the Defect

Listing is the variation in color of centre of the fabric with the selvedge. Some of the reasons for this defect are:

1. Improper batching.
2. Non Uniformity in the selvedge
3. Redyeing of the fabric
4. Foam on the two sides of the jigger.
5. Slippage of the fabric from the roller during dyeing.
6. Shortcomings in the machine such as malfunctioning of guide roll, expander roller or improper squeezing.
7. Improper filteration of the colors, improper circlation of the liquor during dyeing. Difference in temperature of liquor in the centre and at the ends.
8. Mixing of colors which are not properly compatible.
9. Improper singeing

The remedies are:

1. There should not be any mechanical fault in the machine.
2. Take proper care during dyeing, like filter the color solution before using, ensure that all the controlling instrument ( temperature, time) work properly. Circulate the liquor continuously during dyeing.
3. If some shade is not coming out proper, dye with a slighly heavy shade without taking out the earlier color.
4. Join the fabrics of the same width while making a lot.

Friday 19 June 2009

How to Perform Test for Color Fastness to Rubbing

How to Perform Test for Color Fastness to Rubbing

Select a sample that is a representative of the lot.

Technical Specifications:

Apparatus: For determining the color fastness to rubbing a suitable device ( crock meter) with a rubbing finger, comprising a cylinder of 1.6 cm diameter moving to and from in a straight line along a 10.0 cm track on the specimen with a downward force of 9N should be used.

Rubbing Cotton Cloth: Desized, bleached - without finish and cut into 5cm x 5cm squares, should be used.

Grey Scale- Used to evaluate the stain on the cotton cloth

Preparation of the Specimen

1. If the textile to be tested is a fabric, two pieces, each not less than 14 cm x 5 cm for dry rubbing and two pieces for wet rubbing should be drawn from the sample.

2. One specimen of each pair should have the direction parallel to the yarn yarns and other parallel to the weft or filling yarn.

3. If the textile to be tested is yarn or thread, same should be knitted or woven into fabric to provide 4 specimens each of minimum size of 14 cm x 5 cm, two for dry rubbing and two for wet rubbing. Alternatively 4 specimens should be prepared by forming a layer of parallel strand by wrapping it lengthwise on a rectangular card board of suitable dimension.

4. The test specimen should be fixed on the rubbing device by means of clamps such that the long direction of the specimen follows track of the device.

5.In case of multicoloured textiles, care should be taken to position the specimen in such a way that all colors of the design are rubbed in the test. If the areas of colors are sufficiently large, more test specimens should be taken and individual colours should be assessed separately.

Dry Rubbing

With the dry rubbing cloth flat in place over the end of the finger of the crock meter, same shouldl be rubbed 10 times to and fro in a straight line along a track 10 cm long on the dry specimen in 10 seconds and with a downward force of 9 N.

Wet Rubbing

The above described procedure should be repeated with a fresh dry specimen and with wet rubbing cloth. The wet rubbing cloth should be prepared by soaking a fresh rubbing cloth in distilled water and squeezing the same to contain its own weight of water.

The staining of the rubbing cotton cloth should be assessed with the help of a grey scale.

It is necessary to eliminate dyed fibres pulled out during rubbing and retained on the surface of rubbing cotton cloth, the coloration due to staining by dye stuff only should be considered.

In case of doubt on the assessment of color fastness rating by a single observer, the assessment should be done by at least three observers and overall average rating should be reported.


The numerical rating for dry staining and for wet staining of the rubbing cotton cloth for each direction of manufacture should be reported.

Thursday 18 June 2009

Polyurethane Fibres ( Spandax, Lycra)

Polyurethane Fibres ( Spandax, Lycra)

Polyurethane is produced by action of butanediol and hexamethylene diisocyanate.

The polyurethane thus formed has rubber like properties. It gives an elastomeric fibre, which displays elasticity associated with natural rubber and hence can be stretched several times its original length and on releasing the stretching loads it will snap back quickly to recover its original length almost completely. Therefore polyurethane fibres are called snap back or elastomeric fibres.

Different Steps in Fiber Manufacture

Prepolymer Production:

The soft segments of the final polymer are formed in this step. The segments are the source of amorphous regions which permit unfolding of the molecular chains leading to the extension of the fibre under tensile stresses. These segments are made by normal condensation polymerisation techniques. These segments have hydroxy groups at the end.

Reaction Between prepolymers and Diisocyanate

The first prepolymer is reacted with excess of diisocyanate to form urethane groups in the molecular chains.

Segmented polyurethane production

In this step the hard segment is created by chain extension in which second prepolymer is treated with glycols or diamines.


When the final polymer contain essentially linear macromolecules then it is dissolved in the solvent ( eg. DMF- Dimethyl Formamide) and extruded through spinnerettes into a coagulating bath ( water) as in wet spinning or into an atmosphere to remove the solvent as in dry spinning.


Strength: 0.55-1.0 gpd

Extension at Break: 520-610 %

Specific Gravity: 1.20-1.25

Set % at 600% stretch: 70%

Moisture Regain: 0.8-1.2

It is a thermoplastic fibres which sticks at 170 deg C and melts at 230 deg C

It has an excellent resistance to sunlight

It is resistant to insects and microorganisms.

It is resistant to common solvents such as dry cleaning solvents and saturated hydrocarbons.

Chemical Properties

It has good resistance to cold dilute Acids, Hot concentrated acids slightly yellow it.

It has a good resistance to weak and cold alkalies. It has good resistance to cosmetic oils and lotions. Chlorites and hypochlorites attack the fibre.

When heated the fibres fuse and do not shrink from the flame. They burn and produce soft fluffy black ash.

Wednesday 17 June 2009

Natural Dyes and their Application Classes

Natural Dyes and their Application Classes
S. No.Common NameDye Class
3manjeetAcid/ Mordant/Disperse
4SappanwoodMordant /Disperse
5Lac dyeAcid/ Mordant
7TesuMordant/ Disperse
8KamalaMordant/ Disperse
10Gall NutsAcid/ Mordant
11CutchAcid/ Mordant/ Disperse
An excellent paper on the status of natural dyes in India can be downloaded from here

Here is a great blog talking about mordanting on wool.

Monday 15 June 2009

Defects in Dyeing with Reactive Dyes

Defects in Dyeing with Reactive Dyes

Defect: Colors are not fast to washing, Abrasion;Staining in the fabric when transporting from place to the other, water marks on the fabric

Remedy : Wash the fabric with soap and soda ash at right temperature. Adding sequestering agent will yield good results. Treating with Ammonia will also give good results.

Defects in the fabric due to Printing- Need to take out full color

Remedy: Treat the dyed fabric with Sodium Hydrosuphite with 5-10 gm Sodium Hydrosulphite at 75 deg C for 30-45 minutes. Add 5-7 gms Caustic Soda for even removal of colors. The color becomes light yellow or brown after removal. Wash it thoroughly with soap.

The color can also be removed by solution of Sodium Hypochlorite. Treat the fabric with a sodium hypochlorite solution ( 3-5 gms Chlorine) for 20-30 minutes. Keep the pH between 9-10. The fabric is treated with Acetic acid after removal of color to remove chlorine and to neutralise the fabric.

The fabric can be redyed after removal of color

Defect: Bleeding in colors during washing, abrasion

Remedy: Boil the fabric with caustic, Treat the fabric with Hydrogen Peroxide ( 5-10 gpl, 60-70 deg C) to make the color fast.

Defect: The fabric has been dyed in darker shade, uneven dyeing

Remedy: To take out color from the fabric treat it with caustic for 45-60 min at 70 deg C. Thereafter treat the fabric with 10-20 gpl Acetic Acid for 40-60 min at 80-85 deg C.

Defect: Uneven dyeing, marks of water, marks of colors

Remedy: Wash the fabric in soap and redye in a darker shade

Defect : The fabric has become stiff and rough after dyeing

Remedy: Finish after adding right softner

Defect: Color staining of fabric, uneven dyeing

Remedy: Redye the fabric in darker shade.

Defect: Color staining in fabrics of darker shade, uneven undyeing

Remedy: Dye the fabric in Sulphur black

Caution: Please treat a small length fabric to check the effectiveness and any harmful effects before commencing a full treatment.

Polypropylene Fibres- Manufacturing Process

Polypropylene Fibres

Propylene is one of the constituents obtained from thermal or catalytic cracking of petroleum. Under suitable polymerising conditions, propylene produces fibres forming polypropylene.

Polymerisation: It is done by dissolving propylene in heptane using TiCl3Al(C2H5)3 catalyst system at about 100 deg C under a pressure of 30 Atm for 8 hours. The polymer has a molecular weight of about 80000.

Spinning : Polypropylene is melt spun. The filaments are extruded at 100 deg C above the melting point, cooled in air chamber and collected on bobbins. The filaments are hot drawn (polyethene- cold drawn) and twisted into yarns.


1. PP fibres are colorless and have a smooth surface, with round cross section.

2. Tenacity- 4.5-6 gpd
Elongation at Break: 17-20 %
Elastic Properties at 2% extenstion: Instantenous
Stretch for 30 Seconds: 91%, delayed - 9%
Moisture Regain: Nil

3. Boiling water shrinks PP by about 15-20% in 20 minutes

4. Specific Gravity: 0.85-0.92

5. Softening point- 150 deg C, Melting Point: 160-170 deg C

6. PP is also attacked by atmospheric oxygen in presence of sunlight

7. It has excellent resistance to common organic solvents

8. It is resistant to insects and microorganisms

9. PP is generally resistant to common chemicals.

Friday 12 June 2009

Printing with Natural Dyes

Printing with Natural Dyes

In traditional methods in India, printing is essentially carried in three steps:

1. Preparation of the Cloth
2. Mordanting
3. Dyeing

1. First of all the cloth is prepared by applying tannin.

2. A thickened mordant is printed on this tannin treated cloth in the desired pattern.

3. The cloth is then dyed so that dyestuff attaches itself to those parts of the cloth to which mordant has been applied.

Thus the various processes are:

a. Tanning of fabric
b. printing of mordant
c. fixing of the modant
d. washing out the excess of fixing agent
e. dyeing
f. washing and soaping.

Harda or Myrobalan is used in India as a tanning agent for dyeing and printing with natural colours.

It is applied on scoured cotton fabric in cold ( 10-40 gpl) using conventional method of tub dip wherein the Harda powder is replenished with each piece added to the bath.

After drying various metallic salts such as alum or ferrous sulphate are printed on the fabric either separately or in mixtures.

It is then subsequently dyed with madder root ( Manjith), pometranate rind, kusum flowers and other vegetable dyes.

Thursday 11 June 2009

Trade Names of Natural Dyes

PomegranatePunica granatiumPacific
MyrobalanTerminalia chebulaKongo
CutchAcacia catechuThar
KamalaMallotus phillipinensisBasant
Nut Galls Quercus infectoriaAmber-M
MadderRubia cardifoliaIndus
Himalayan RhubarbRheum emodi Desert
IndigoIndigofera tinctoriaNile
Annato Bixa orellanaAmazon
LacCoccus laccaeRhine-M

You can find a tutorial on How to Use Natural Dyes here.  Receipes for natural dyes can be found here.

Common Causes of Dyeing Defects

Common Causes of Dyeing Defects:

It is important that the general precautions should be followed while dyeing a textile material. It is always helpful to keep a record of all the conditions (including temperature, time, conc of color, chemicals, material to liquor ratio) in order to get an even shade in each batch. In general the following are the common causes of dyeing defects across all the categories of dyes:

1. The material is not well prepared for dyeing and printing

a. Material having dead fibres or other defective fibres
b. Left over of Chemicals after bleaching etc.
c. Material not properly desized
d. Material not properly mercerised.
e. Absorbancy of the fabric not proper
f. Sticking of insoluble material on the fibres
g. Impurities are not removed properly
h. Uneven heat treatment.

2.Water Quality not Proper

a. More Hardness of water
b. Water has metal ions such as iron.
c. pH of water not proper
d. Water having more chlorine

3. Due to Shortcomings in making Dyeing Solution

a. Improper weight ratio of colors, material and chemicals.
b. Improper material to water ratio
3. Improper filtering of concentrated colors.

4. Due to Shortcomings in the dye machinery

a. Coming out of Dye liquor during dyeing
b. Defective instruments controlling temperature, pressure speed etc.

Wednesday 10 June 2009

Polyethylene Fibres

Polyolefin fibres

Fibres made from polymers or copolymers of olefin hydrocarbons such as ethylene, propylene are called polyolefins.

Polyethylene: Of all the fibre forming polymers, polyethylene (made by addition polymerisation) Ch2==Ch2 has the simplest structure.

Manufacture: Ethylene is the principal raw material for producing polyethylene fibres. Ethylene gas is obtained by cracking petroleum.

Polymerisation: Ethylene is polymerised under severe conditions in autoclaves at 200 deg C and 1500 atmospheric pressure in the presence of traces (0.01%) of oxygen acting as a catalyst. The polymer resembles paraffin wax and is characterised by low density.

Spinning : Spinning of polyethylene is carried out by melt spinning. The polymer with a molecular weight of about 15,000 is spun from the melt at about 205 deg C and extended through a spinnerette of 0.1 mm diameter into a current of cooling gas. The filaments are cooled to 15 -60 deg C and stretched 4 to 10 times their original length. The drawn monofilaments are wound on spools.

Properties of polyethylene

a. Polyethylene fibre has a round cross section and has a smooth surface. Fibres made from low molecular weight polyethylene have a grease like handle.

b. Specific Gravity- 0.92
Tenacity - 1.0-1.5 gpd
Elongation at Break %- 45-50
Tensile Strength psi - 15000
Softening Range: deg C- 85-90

c The moisture regain of polyethylene is practically nil and hence moisture does not affect the mechanical properties of the fibres.

d. Polyethylene is insoluble in most of the common organic solvents at room temperature.

e. Polyethylene fibres have a high degree of resistance to acids and alkalies at all concentrations even at high temperature.

f. The fibre is generally inert and is resistant to wide range of chemicals at ordinary temperatures. They are attacked by oxidising agents.

How to determine Seam Strength

Seam strength is the strength of seam assembly in a garment. It is a function of the strength of the thread used for the seam, type of seam assembly in a garment and type of fabric used, among other factors.

Failure of seam assembly can occur either by breaking of sewing thread, tearing of the fabric at the seam, excessive yarn slippage adjacent to the stitches or a combination of the above mentioned conditions.

How to determine seam strength in laboratory

In a lab CRE type tensile testing machines such as INSTRON is used. Before testing the samples are prepared.The method is called Grab Test

If the specimens are from manufactured items such as garment then five speicmens are cut having a length of 270 mm on either side of the stitch line and a width of 100 mm parallel to the stitch line.

If the specimens are prepared from fabric then seam strength is measured in warp, weft and bias directions. In such cases swatches are cut in these three directions.

Also two such swatches from two different rolls are joined by the seam assembly- for which we want to test the strength- to measure the parameters.

Before testing the material is conditioned to standard temperature.

The specimen is mounted on the tensile tester. It is operated until the sewn seam or fabric ruptures. The observation is made whether the rupture is caused by Fabric yarn rupture, sewing thread rupture, sewn seam yarn slippage or a combination of two or more of the foregoing. This will give the seam strength.

Repeat this Grab Test for the fabric specimens from which seam failure test is carried out. The result will give the base fabric strength.

Seam strength ( for each direction) will be calculated by the formula:

Seam strength ( gms/cm)= ( Individual specimen seam breaking force in gms)/ Width of specimen in Jaws i.e. 2.5 cm.

Base fabric breaking strength of the individual specimens are calculated by the formula:

Base fabric strength (gms/cm)= (Base Fabric breaking force in gms of individual test specimen)/ Width of specimen in jaws i.e. 2.5 cm

Seam Efficiency= Seam Strength ( Seamed Fabric Strength) x 100)/ Base Fabric Strength

If this seam efficiency ratio falls below 80%, the fabric has been excessively damaged by the sewing operation.

Friday 5 June 2009

Manufacturing Process and Properties of PVA

Polyvinyl Alcohol Fibres

Polyvinyl alcohol (water soluble compound) can be described as a polyhydric, having secondary alcoholic groups on alternate carbon atoms of an aliphatic macromolecule.

Because of the presence of a large number of hydroxy groups, in its molecular structure, it is soluble in water. This is solublised in water by a treatment with formaldehyde.

Manufacture of Polyvinyl Alcohol

1. Production of acetic acid from acetylene

For this purpose, limestone is calcinated to give quicklime (CaO) which is treated with coke at elevated temperature to form calciium carbide. Acetylene is generated by treating calcium carbide with water. A part of acetylene is converted into acetic acidby combined hydration and oxidation.

Synthesis of Vinyl Acetate

The acetic acid formed in the above step is reacted with acetylene in the presence of zinc acetate catalyst when vinyl acetate is formed.

Polymerisation of Vinyl Acetate

A solution of vinyl acetate in methanol is used for the polymerisation of vinyl acetate in the presence of a peroxide or azo compound as a catalyst.

Conversion of PVAcetate into PVA

NaOH is added in PV Acetate solution in methanol, when alcoholysis of the acetate groups takes place.


The precipitated PVA as obtained in the preceding step is pressed and dried. It is then dissolved in water to give a 15% solution of the polymer. This solution is extruded into a spinning bath containing sulphuric acid ( 20%), Glauber's Salt ( 25%), formaldehyde (5%) and water (50%)


Shrinkage Properties: 10% at 220-230 deg C.

At 220 deg c, It begins to turn yellow and shrinks.

The fiber is inert to animal, vegetable and mineral oils and to most common organic solvents.

It has good resistance to acids under normal conditions, Hot or concentrated mineral acids cause swelling and shrinkage. Its resistance to alkali is generally good. Strong alkalies cause yellowing without affecting the tenacity.

Fabrics made from this fibre do not get solied easily. They are easy to wash and quick to dry. They have good crease retention.

Specific Gravity:

Tenacity ( GPD)  
Elongation at Break  
Elastic Recovery65-85%70-90%
Moisture Regain4.5-5%3-5%

Thursday 4 June 2009

How to Identify Constituent Fibre Percentage in a Blend-2

Blend of Acrylic with Wool, Silk, Cotton, Viscose, Polyester or Nylon

1. Dissolve the acrylic fibres with (Dimethyl Formamide - DMF). Acrylic Fibres will dissolve in DMF.

2. Filter, rinse and weigh carefully to get the ratio of Acrylic Fibres.

Blend of Protein Fibres ( Wool or Silk) with cotton, polyester, nylon or acrylic

1. Take the blended fibres ( Carefully weighed) in a conical flask.

2. Add a solution of 5% (w/w) solution of Sodium Hydroxide or Potassium Hydroxide and boil for 10 minutes. Protein fibres will dissolve in Sodium Hydroxide or Potassium Hydroxide.

3. Rinse the leftover fibres with water and neutralise with dilute Acetic Acid.

4. Weigh the fibres after drying and find the ratio of protein fibres.

Blend of Polyester with Cotton or Viscose

1. Weigh the blend and heat it with Meta cresol. Polyester fibres will dissolve.

2. Weigh the residual fibres after rinsing thoroughly and drying and find the percentage of polyester fibres.

Blend of Elastane ( Spandex or Lycra) with Cotton or Viscose

1. Treat the blend with DMF. Elastane will dissolve in DMF.

2. Filter, Rinse, dry and get the weight of residual fibres to get the percentage of elastane.

Wednesday 3 June 2009

How to Identify Constituent Fibre Percentage in a Blend-1

Blend of Polyester/Cotton (viscose)

1. Take 0.5 to 1.0 gms of blend sample, carefully weighed, and put it in a flask.

2. Add 75% (w/w) Sulphuric Acid (M:L::1:200).

3. Put in a water bath for one hour at 50+-5 deg C.

4. Filter it, whatever is left is polyester.

5. Wash it thoroughly.

6. Neutralise it with Dilute solution of Ammonia

7. Dry at 110 deg C, cool and weigh to find the Percentage of Polyester and the other cellulosic component.

Blend of Cotton/Viscose

1. Take 0.5 to 1.0 gms carefully weighed sample and put it in 60% w/w Sulphuric Acid. Keep material to Liquor ratio as 1:100.

2. Stir this solution mechanically for 30 minutes. Viscose fibres will dissolve by this process and cotton fibres will be left.

3. Filter the cotton fibres and wash it in Sulphuric Acid.

4. Again wash it with water and neutralise it with a dilute solution of Ammonium Hydroxide.

5. Dry and Weigh. Note that cotton fibres lose weight by 5% in this process. Apply this correction factor in finding the blend percentage .

Blend of Polyester/Cotton/Viscose

1. Put the fibres in 60% w/w sulphuric acid (after weighing). Viscose will dissolve in 60% w/w sulphuric acid.

2. Dry and weigh carefully the rest of the fibres.

3. Put these fibres in 75% sulphuric acid. Cotton will dissolve.

4. The fibres left will be of polyester, which are weighed after thorough washing and drying.

FAQ in textile dyeing

Here is an amazing site to answer the following ( and many more) frequently asked questions on Dyeing:

Which dyes are more lightfast?

How can I fix non-reactive dyes

Is there anything I can do to "set" the dye on purchased fabric?

How can I dye spandex (or Lycra or elastane)?

How can I dye nylon?

How can I dye rayon?

How can I dye satin or charmeuse?

How can I dye polyester?

What are mordants? What's the difference between mordants and other dye chemicals?

What is soda ash? What's it used for?

What temperature should the soda ash be?

What is the effect of pH? What is the optimal pH?

What is urea for? Is it necessary?

What is the effect of temperature?

Should I use distilled or spring water instead of tap water?

Do I need to use salt?

How are thickeners such as alginate used with dye?

How do you use Silk Salt or other large salt crystals to make bursts of color?

Help! I ruined clothing by spattering bleach. How can I fix it?

How do you "bleach" a screen print on a t-shirt?

Can you tie dye something that is already dark?

How can I neutralize the damaging effects of chlorine bleach?

What chemicals can be used to remove dye?

Which Procion MX dyes discharge the best? Which are good at resisting chlorine bleach?

Which Procion MX dyes are pure, and which are mixtures?

Which MX dyes at one supplier are the same as those at another?

How can I mix Procion MX dyes to get specific colors?

What is in Procion type dye powder?

What other brand names are Procion MX type dyes sold under?

What do the letters and numbers in the code name for a Procion MX type dye mean?

Which Procion MX dyes discharge the best? Which are good at resisting chlorine bleach?

Which Procion H dyes are pure unmixed colors, and which mixtures? How do they compare from one retailer to another?

Which Wash Fast Acid dyes are pure, rather than mixtures?

What are Kiton Levelling Acid Dyes?

My colors just washed out! What happened?

My colors are not very bright. What did I do wrong?

Why are there specks of color all over my fabric?

Why did the thread stay white when I dyed clothing?

How do you tie-dye a star or mandela pattern?

How do you tie-dye a spiral?

How do you tie-dye letters of the alphabet?

How can I tie-dye a peace sign?

How can I dye clothing or fabric in the washing machine?

Can I paint on clothing with oil paints?

Can I screenprint with a dye resist?

How do you tie-dye socks?

Is it safe to eat or breathe fiber reactive dyes?

Which dyes are the safest? Which are the most dangerous?

Aren't natural dyes always safer than synthetic dyes?

Is all-purpose dye safer than fiber reactive dye?

Polyvinyl Chloride- Manufacturing Process and Properties

Polyvinyl Chloride (Vinyon)

Fibre Manufacture:

Vinyl Chloride is the principal raw material from which polyvinyl chloride is made by addition polymerisation. There are two methods commonly used for the production of vinyl chloride:

1. Ethylene+ chlorine--> Ethylene Dichloride--600 deg C--> Vinyl chloride +HCl


Cl-CH2-CH2-Cl--300deg C +Charcoal--> Vinyl Chloride + HCl


Cl-CH2-CH2-Cl--CH3OH+NaOH (60 deg C)--> vinyl Chloride + NaCl+ H2

2. Acetylene +HCL--150 deg C, HgCl--> CH2=CHCl (Vinyl Chloride)


the vinyl chloride monomer is polymerised in the emulsion form in an autoclave at a pressure of 50 Atm and at a temperature of 65 deg C. A suspension of the polymer is obtained which is then spray dried.


This may be done by dry spinning or wet spinning.

1. Dry Spinning: In the dry spinning process the polymer is dissolved in a mixture of CS2 and acetone, filtered and pumped at 70 deg to 100 deg through spinnerettes into a chamber, provided with heated walls, and into which air is introduced. The solvent evaporating from the extruded filaments is carried away by the air. At the bottom of the chamber the solvent free filaments are removed through a fine orifice and wound on a bobbin. The solvent is recovered and used again. the filaments are stretched to ensure that the molecular chains get oriented and the fibres become stronger and attain less extension at break, increased brightness, transparency etc.

2. Wet Spinning: In the wet spinning process, PVC is dissolved in THF (Tetra Hydro Furon) to give a highly concentrated solution, which is spun into water, through a stretch spinning funnel. The filaments ar stretched and cut into staple fibres.


1. Tenacity: Wet or Dry: 2.7-3 gpd
2. Elongation at BreaK: Wet or Dry: 12-20 %
3. Moisture Content: 0
4. Specific Gravity: 1.4

v. Effect of Heat: It contracts at temperatures above 78 deg C and shrinks to half its original length at 100 deg C.

vi. It has an excellent resistance to sunlight. It is completely resistant to insects and microorganisms. It is inherently non-flammable.

vii. It is exceptionally resistant to caustic soda, nitric acid and sulphuric acid. It has outstanding resistance to many chemicals including bleaching agents, reducing agents.

Tuesday 2 June 2009

Flex Abrasion Resistance- Determination

Method for determination of Flex abrasion resistance:

1. Cut five test specimens each 200mm. long and of 32 or 38mm width depending upon wheter the number of yarns/dm of the specimen is below or above 200. Ravel the specimen to 25 mm in width by removing from each side approximately the same number of yarns. Do not take two specimens fro the weft test from the same warp ends or any two specimens fro the weft test from the same picks. Take weft specimens at wide intervals.

2 After positioning the bar by means of the yoke holder, place the specimen between the pressure (upper) plate and the reciprocating (lower) plate of the apparatus and locate centrally. with the specified folding bar or folding blade inserted, after being clamped and loaded by removal of yoke holder, distribute the tension exerted by the bar or blade uniformly over the width of the specimen and align the long dimension both above and below the bar parallel to the direction of the reciprocating motion. Position the specimen with the fold at the centre of the upper plate, and the reciprocating plate at the rear of its stroke when the specimen is clamped.

3. Load the pressure plate and the folding bar or blade as required by the material specifications. In the absence of the material specification, the bar load sufficient to produce rupture in excess of at least 100 cycles and preferably in 300 cycles should be used, in combination with the lowest head load (pressure) sufficient to prevent vibration of the upper plate at the start of the test.

The ratio of the bar to head loads shall be 4:1

4. Check the bar alignment after the first 25 cycles. If shifting of bar from its normal position is noticed, discard the specimen and make the proper adjustment.

5. Remove the pills of matted fibres debris interfering with proper contact between the specimen and the folding bar or folding blade during the test if they cause a marked vibration of the pressure plate or otherwise interfere with proper abrasion. The pill should be removed by careful clipping. Do not correct the vibration of the pressure plate due to pilling by applying additional load. Check the position of the specimen after additional cycles to ensure that the removal of the pills has not altered the bar alignment.

6. If the specimen slips in the clamps or tension and pressure upon the folded specimen do not remain constant during the test, or an anomalous wear pattern is obtained, discard such individual measurements and test an additional specimen.

7. Before every test the blade is rinsed with degreasing agent.

8. The end point is determined by abrading the specimen until rupture and number of cycles is recorded.

9. The report should include the following information:

a. Abradent used, bar or blade
b. Average number of cycles required to produce rupture the specimen

Total No of cycles Report to the nearest cycle
Below 200 10
200 to 299 25
1000 to 4999 50
5000 and above 100

c. Tension and pressure used.

Monday 1 June 2009

Acrylic- Manufacturing Process and Properties

Polyacrilonitrile ( Acrylic)

vinyl Cyanide, more commonly known as acrylonitrile, can under go addition polymerisation to form polyacrylonitrile.

Raw Material

Acrilonitrile is the main main raw material for the manufacture of acrylic fibres. It is made by different methods. In one commercial method, hydrogen cyanide is treated with acetylene:

acetylene + Hydrogen cyanide --> Acrilonitrile

2nd Method

Ethylene--Air Oxidation--> Ethylene oxide + HCN--> Ethylene cyanahydrin--Dehydration at 300 deg C (catalyst)--> Acrylonitrile

In a continuous polymerisation process, 95% acrylonitrile and 6% methyl acrylate (400 parts) 0.25% aqueous solution of K2S2O8(600 parts), 0.50 % Na2S2O5 solution ( 600 Parts) and 2N sulphuric acid (2.5 Parts) are fed into the reaction vessel at 52 deg C under nitrogen atmosphere giving a slurry with 67% polymer. The slurry is continuously withdrawn, filtered and washed till it is free from salts and dried.

Acrilonitrile is dry spun. The material is dissolved in dimethyl formamide, the solution contains 10-20 polymers. It is heated and extruded into a heated spinning cell. A heated evaporating medium such as air, nitrogen or steam moves counter current to the travel of filaments and removes the solvent to take it to a recovery unit. The filaments are hot stretched at 100 to 250 C depending on the time of contact in the hot zone, to several times their original length.

Properties of Acrylic Fibres

1. Acrylic has a warm and dry hand like wool. Its density is 1.17 g/cc as compared to 1.32 g/cc of wool. It is about 30% bulkier than wool. It has about 20% greater insulating power than wool.

2. Acrylic has a moisture regain of 1.5-2% at 65% RH and 70 deg F.

3. It has a tenacity of 5 gpd in dry state and 4-8 gpd in wet state.

4. Breaking elongation is 15% ( both states)

5. It has a elastic recovery of 85% after 4% extension when the load is released immediately.

6. It has a good thermal stability. When exposed to temperatures above 175 deg C for prolonged periods some discolouration takes place.

7. Acrylic shrinks by about 1.5% when treated with boiling water for 30 min.

8. It has a good resistance to mineral acids. The resistance to weak alkalies is fairly good, while hot strong alkalies rapidly attack acrylic.

9. Moths, Mildew and insects do not attack Acrylic.

10. It has an outstanding stability towards commonly bleaching agents.


1. Knit Jersey, Sweater, blankets
2. Wrinkle resistant fabrics.
3. Pile and Fleece fabrics
4. Carpets and rugs.

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