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What is the actual chemical compound of our clothes?


kenny1999
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What is the actual chemical compound of the texture of our clothes that are commonly available in the commercial market? Is different color of clothes due to addictive added during the manufacturing process or the natural color of the compound of the raw materials? What are usually the chemical reactions that will be done to raw materials to make it become clothes?

I know it's a broad question but I am looking for some understanding on this issue.

Edited by kenny1999
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1 minute ago, kenny1999 said:

What is the actual chemical compound of the texture of our clothes that are commonly available in the commercial market? Is different color of clothes due to addictive added during the manufacturing process or the natural color of the compound of the raw materials? What are usually the chemical reactions that will be done to raw materials to make it become clothes?

I know it's a broad question but I am looking for some understanding on this issue.

Why don't we start by you engaging your brain and thinking about the fact that (i) there are numerous different types of fabric, (ii) there are these things called dyes and (iii) there are just one or two mechanical processes to convert raw materials into fabric and then fabric into clothes?

After you've done that and can formulate a sensible question instead of a silly one, maybe it will be worth going to the trouble of answering it.     

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Most natural fibres, derived from plants, are essentially made of cellulose

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cellulose

 

Silk is largely a protein called fibroin

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fibroin

And wool is mainly keratin.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Keratin

Some artificial fibres are made from reconstituted cellulose.
Nylon could be any of a number of polyamides

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polyamide


And polyester is  an ester of ethylene glycol with terephthalic acid.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polyethylene_terephthalate

There are some others.

 

All of those materials are intrinsically white.
The colours are due to dyes mixed into the fibres or added onto the surfaces.

2 hours ago, exchemist said:

there are just one or two mechanical processes to convert raw materials into fabric and then fabric into clothes?

For example, for cotton, those two or three processes are

Harvesting

ginning

carding

spinning

mercerising

dyeing

weaving,

cutting

sewing.

I may have missed two or three.

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6 hours ago, kenny1999 said:

the texture of our clothes

The feel and consistency of our clothing has a lot to do with physics, which is also fascinating, but a separate topic. Spinning fibers changes the way fabric moves and stretches. 

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37 minutes ago, Phi for All said:

The feel and consistency of our clothing has a lot to do with physics, which is also fascinating, but a separate topic. Spinning fibers changes the way fabric moves and stretches. 

I worked for DuPont, the Cape Fear site, we made Dacron polyester, the way fibers can be manipulated on the manufacturing level is mind bending. And physics is a big part of it. But we made clear polyester all the way up to what we called "dull" fibers that were so full of titanium dioxide they looked like double white or something, hard to really describe, but the properties of the polyester determined how it would take dye and feel when you wore it. We had a large lab and engineering section and we made experimental fibers some of which were silk like to fibers that looked like aluminum foil threads.

Polyester is made from plastic that is stretched and otherwise manipulated to resemble other fibers. Dacron is just one of many fibers bother natural and artificial. I have a small video that shows parts of the process, it can be amazingly complicated, but it's on tape and I am not supposed to share it anyway. 

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55 minutes ago, Moontanman said:

I worked for DuPont, the Cape Fear site, we made Dacron polyester, the way fibers can be manipulated on the manufacturing level is mind bending. And physics is a big part of it. But we made clear polyester all the way up to what we called "dull" fibers that were so full of titanium dioxide they looked like double white or something, hard to really describe, but the properties of the polyester determined how it would take dye and feel when you wore it. We had a large lab and engineering section and we made experimental fibers some of which were silk like to fibers that looked like aluminum foil threads.

Polyester is made from plastic that is stretched and otherwise manipulated to resemble other fibers. Dacron is just one of many fibers bother natural and artificial. I have a small video that shows parts of the process, it can be amazingly complicated, but it's on tape and I am not supposed to share it anyway. 

But you must have more interesting tales you can share from that time ??  +1

As a matter of interest I recall being taught that Dacron was acquired by DuPont from the  pre-ICI who invented the stuff (then called terelene).
We understood that the US had nylon and the UK had terelene.

Edited by studiot
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53 minutes ago, Moontanman said:

but it's on tape and I am not supposed to share it anyway.

Tape ????
How long ago did you work there ?


The OP is rather open ended, so you may have been a bit brutal, John ...

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I've gravitated back to natural fibers and goose down, partly due to the plastic nanoparticles issue, and can report that's an expensive path.  But comfortable on the skin when you replace poly blends with straight cotton.  All I know about cotton is that it gets stronger and wrinkles less when mercerized (soaking in NaOH), which is useful for clothes but not for towels (unmercerized absorbs water better).   

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21 hours ago, studiot said:

But you must have more interesting tales you can share from that time ??  +1

Oh you don't know the half of it but most of them require some knowledge of the process to really make any sense. 

Having a tube core explode next to you while you are up close to rotating and or hot equipment and can't let yourself move at at all is a classic. 

21 hours ago, studiot said:

As a matter of interest I recall being taught that Dacron was acquired by DuPont from the  pre-ICI who invented the stuff (then called terelene).
We understood that the US had nylon and the UK had terelene.

I'm not sure about that, it was never discussed, DuPont pretty much claimed they invented it.  

21 hours ago, MigL said:

Tape ????
How long ago did you work there ?

I worked there from 1973 to 1998, we had a worldwide computer network going there by the early 80s, I loved to surf the other DuPont sites around the world. We used computers to monitor our processes in real time and they were linked to all the dupont sites around the world. I remember really enjoying talking to DuPont in Australia! 

21 hours ago, MigL said:


The OP is rather open ended, so you may have been a bit brutal, John ...

 

21 hours ago, John Cuthber said:

Does that mean it's a video on polyester on polyester?

 

I never thought of that but it makes sense. 

19 hours ago, TheVat said:

I've gravitated back to natural fibers and goose down, partly due to the plastic nanoparticles issue, and can report that's an expensive path.  But comfortable on the skin when you replace poly blends with straight cotton.  All I know about cotton is that it gets stronger and wrinkles less when mercerized (soaking in NaOH), which is useful for clothes but not for towels (unmercerized absorbs water better).   

I prefer natural fibers as well. We made polyester that was like spider silk and some that was almost like rope, good times for all ! 

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53 minutes ago, Moontanman said:

I'm not sure about that, it was never discussed, DuPont pretty much claimed they invented it.  

Of course they would, but I'm not talking about their publicity department.

They certainly invented Nylon and ICI held a licence for its manufacture in the UK.
But after the war the Sherman Act cause bitterness and much litigation over this licence.

 

 

Wikipedia will do

Quote

Textiles

Polyester fibres are widely used in the textile industry. The invention of the polyester fibre is attributed to J. R. Whinfield.[9] It was first commercialized in the 1940s by ICI, under the brand 'Terylene'.[10] Subsequently E. I. DuPont launched the brand 'Dacron'. As of 2022, there are many brands around the world, mostly Asian.

Polyester fibres are used in fashion apparel often blended with cotton, as heat insulation layers in thermal wear, sportswear and workwear and automotive upholstery.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polyethylene_terephthalate#cite_note-9

 

There is a facebookmemories group you might be interested in for the now defunct ICI fibres.

https://www.facebook.com/groups/332552444829415/

 

Perhaps there is one for Du Pont ?

Edited by studiot
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21 hours ago, studiot said:

Of course they would, but I'm not talking about their publicity department.

They certainly invented Nylon and ICI held a licence for its manufacture in the UK.
But after the war the Sherman Act cause bitterness and much litigation over this licence.

 

 

Wikipedia will do

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polyethylene_terephthalate#cite_note-9

 

There is a facebookmemories group you might be interested in for the now defunct ICI fibres.

https://www.facebook.com/groups/332552444829415/

 

Perhaps there is one for Du Pont ?

There is a local page for the Cape Fear Site, but I know of no company wide pages for Dacron. 

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