Thesis Details

Thesis Title: The effects of machine parameters, abrasion surface type, and fabric construction on the physical characteristics of 100% polyester microdenier sueded fabrics
Thesis Author: Shannan Williams
Abstract: The competitive nature of the textile industry requires the development of innovative, quality products. Face finishing techniques such as napping, emerizing, and sueding can enhance the surface effect and the market value of a fabric. Fabrics constructed using microfibers can possess an even softer hand through the mechanical sueding process. Although sueding aesthetically improves the fabric value in the marketplace, the process may alter the color or change the physical characteristics of the fabric. A published quality assessment system of multiple sueding variables does not presently exist. The ultimate goal of manufacturing sueded fabrics, and all textiles, is the ability to maintain quality through consistent understanding of processing parameters. The purpose of this research was to evaluate the quantitative and qualitative effects of machine parameters of a multicylinder sueding machine. Trials were performed using knit and woven fabric, while varying the intensities of the following sueding conditions: fabric tension, fabric speed, the abrasion grit on the rolls, working roll speed, and fabric construction. Each of the aforementioned parameters can contribute to the quality and sueding intensity effect on the end product. The research results indicate that the main effects and interactive effects of sandpaper grit, working roll energy, fabric tension ratio, and fabric speed have significant impacts on the tear and tensile strength of the woven fabric, as well as the knit fabric. Surface effects were observed and analyzed using photomicrograph images of the fabric surface. However, subtle differences between less intense sueding conditions were difficult to discern. Regression models relating process variables to fabric characteristics were developed in this study. These models may be used to reduce the current trial and error practice of producing consistent face finished fabrics. The use of these models for sueding under controlled processing conditions of fabric tensions, roll speeds, and the abrasion surface type will enable the textile manufacturer to predict the end use of a fabric, based on the physical characteristics of the fabric.