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8 Characteristics Of Textile Fibers
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8 Characteristics Of Textile Fibers

1. Wear fastness

Abrasion fastness refers to the ability to resist wear and tear, which helps improve the durability of a fabric. Clothing made from fibers with high breaking strength and good abrasion fastness can be worn for a long time.

Nylon is widely used in sports outerwear, such as ski jackets and football shirts. This is because its strength and abrasion resistance are particularly good. Acetate is often used as a lining for outerwear and jackets due to its excellent drape and low cost. But because acetate has poor abrasion resistance, the lining is prone to fraying or forming holes before the outer fabric of the jacket shows corresponding wear.

2. Water absorption

The water absorption of fibers refers to the percentage of moisture absorbed by dry fibers in the air under standard conditions of a temperature of 70°F (equivalent to 21°C) and a relative humidity of 65%.

Fibers that absorb water easily are called hydrophilic fibers. All natural animal and vegetable fibers and two man-made fibers, viscose and acetate, are hydrophilic fibers. Fibers that have difficulty absorbing water or can only absorb a small amount of water are called hydrophobic fibers. All man-made fibers except viscose, Lyocell and acetate are hydrophobic fibers. Fiberglass does not absorb water at all, and other fibers typically have a moisture regain of 4% or less.

3. Chemical effects

During textile processing and home care, fibers often come into contact with chemicals. The type of chemical, the intensity of action, and the time of action determine the degree of impact on the fiber.

Fibers react differently to chemicals. For example, cotton fibers have relatively low acid resistance but good alkali resistance. In addition, cotton fabrics will lose a little strength after being finished with chemical resin.

4. Coverage

Coverage refers to the ability to fill a certain range. Textile coverings made from coarse or curly fibers are better than those made from fine, straight fibers.

Wool is a fiber widely used in winter clothing. Its curl provides excellent coverage to the fabric and forms a large amount of still air in the fabric, which insulates the cold air from the outside. The effectiveness of fiber coverage depends on its cross-sectional shape, longitudinal structure and weight.

5. Flexibility

Elasticity refers to the ability to increase length under tension and return to its original state after the external force is released.

Fibers that can stretch at least 100% are called elastic fibers. Spandex and rubber fibers are examples of this type of fiber. After being stretched, these elastic fibers can almost forcefully return to their original length.

6. Environmental conditions

Environmental conditions affect fibers in different ways. How the fibers and ultimately the fabric react to exposure, storage, etc. is very important.

Wool garments need to be protected from insects when stored as they are easily eaten by wool borers. Nylon and silk lose strength when exposed to sunlight for a long time, so they are not usually used to make curtains, doors and windows.

7. Flammability

Flammability refers to the ability of an object to ignite or burn. This is a very important feature.

Fibers are usually divided into flammable, non-flammable and flame-retardant:
Flammable fibers are fibers that ignite easily and continue to burn. Non-flammable fibers refer to fibers that have a relatively high burning point, a relatively slow burning speed, and will extinguish themselves after the combustion source is removed. Flame retardant fibers are fibers that will not burn.

8. Softness

Flexibility refers to the ability of fibers to bend repeatedly without breaking. Soft fibers such as acetate support fabrics and garments that drape well. Rigid fibers such as glass fiber cannot be used to make clothing, but they can be used in decorative fabrics that need to be relatively stiff. Generally the finer the fibers, the better the drape. Softness also affects the feel of the fabric.

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