FYI: Fabrics & Soaking ability

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Dunners
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FYI: Fabrics & Soaking ability

Post by Dunners » Thu Aug 04, 2005 1:38 pm

The Cloth Diaper Supplies Coop leader has just done the following test on fabrics. Thought I'd pass it on in case anyone is interested...

I cut each piece the same size- 2.5 X 3.5 and put them each in a tupperware container, added 1oz of water, and then pushed the water into them and let them soak for about an hour- meanwhile coming back to give them a squeeze to soak up as much water as possible. Then I poured whatever water was left back into the 1 oz shotglass and measured what was left.

So my findings were these fabrics soaked up this much water:

Hemp Fleece (washed once) soaked up 1/3 ounce
Sherpa (from another source) soaked up 1/3 ounce
Organic BKT soaked up 1/2 ounce
Single sided Sherpa (coop sherpa) soaked up 2/3 ounce
Double sided Sherpa (coop sherpa) soaked up 3/4 ounce


Someone asked about the microfibre - she said she'd test it and let us know (I'll add it when I know).
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Post by Dunners » Thu Aug 11, 2005 6:49 pm

And another test that she's done... (Cloth Diaper Supplies Co-op)

I did an absorbancy test on some fabrics that I have here on hand. I started with each piece measuring 2.5"X3.5". I put each one in a tupperware container, added 15tsp of water and worked the water into the fabric, leaving it to soak in for at least 2 hours. I came back periodically to give the fabric a squeeze ensuring that each piece absorbed as much as possible. Then I poured out the water that remained and measured how many tsp it soaked up. So these are the fabrics and how much water they soaked up:

Brand new microfiber Terry (sold by the yard in this Co-op) 6tsp
Double sided cotton/poly fleece (sold in the Co-op) 6tsp
Sherpa in pastel colors (from Sewing Supply Co-op) co-op 5tsp
Organic BKT 5tsp
White Flannel (in Co-op) 5tsp
Microfiber terry towels from Wal Mart used for one year 4tsp
New Hemp Fleece 4tsp
Single Sided Sherpa (in Co-op) 4tsp
Nantucket cotton terry 4tsp
Organic French Terry Fleece 4tsp
Killingtons Flannel 4tsp
Hemp French Terry w/lycra used for one year 3tsp
New Hemp Jersey 3tsp
New Hemp French Terry 3tsp

One thing that is interesting is it kind of also gets less expensive the less absorbent the fabric is. For a true study, I would have to reapeat this several times and take the average of all the tests, but like that's gonna happen lol. It's just something I did since I had all the fabrics available to me and thought it would be interesting to everyone.
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Post by Uglyduckling » Sun May 07, 2006 10:06 am

I have just tested as above the GreenBeans Sherpa and Microfibre.

Each fabric was washed in a hot was with minimal Eco-store powder. A piece 2.5 x 3.5 inches of each and placed them in a tuperware container. I then poured 75mls (15 tsp) on each. They were mixed around and left overnight. The pieces of fabric were removed from the conainers and allowed to drip back into the container until they stopped dripping.

Microfibre absorbed 25mls or 5tsp
Sherpa absorbed 20mls or 4 tsp
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Post by mama anne » Thu Jun 22, 2006 12:46 am

hey
planning (in my head at least) my next fabric purchase ...

was wondering about the absorbancy of different types of hemp ...
And another test that she's done... (Cloth Diaper Supplies Co-op)

Quote:

I did an absorbancy test on some fabrics that I have here on hand. I started with each piece measuring 2.5"X3.5". I put each one in a tupperware container, added 15tsp of water and worked the water into the fabric, leaving it to soak in for at least 2 hours. I came back periodically to give the fabric a squeeze ensuring that each piece absorbed as much as possible. Then I poured out the water that remained and measured how many tsp it soaked up. So these are the fabrics and how much water they soaked up:

Brand new microfiber Terry (sold by the yard in this Co-op) 6tsp
Double sided cotton/poly fleece (sold in the Co-op) 6tsp
Sherpa in pastel colors (from Sewing Supply Co-op) co-op 5tsp
Organic BKT 5tsp
White Flannel (in Co-op) 5tsp
Microfiber terry towels from Wal Mart used for one year 4tsp
New Hemp Fleece 4tsp
Single Sided Sherpa (in Co-op) 4tsp
Nantucket cotton terry 4tsp
Organic French Terry Fleece 4tsp
Killingtons Flannel 4tsp
Hemp French Terry w/lycra used for one year 3tsp
New Hemp Jersey 3tsp
New Hemp French Terry 3tsp

One thing that is interesting is it kind of also gets less expensive the less absorbent the fabric is. For a true study, I would have to reapeat this several times and take the average of all the tests, but like that's gonna happen lol. It's just something I did since I had all the fabrics available to me and thought it would be interesting to everyone.




just was wondering about the hemp .... as i've read lots of times hemp gets more absorbant as it's washed a few times .... does that mean that theoretically the new hemp french terry, new hemp jersey and new hemp fleece would absorb more in nappying use than this test suggests ... ?

or is my preggo brain just not getting it? :roll:
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Post by mama anne » Tue Jul 18, 2006 12:15 am

sorry another fabric question ... hoping someone will know the answer ....

do you notice a different absorbancy with different types of hemp fabric ... eg hemp french terry .... hemp/organic cotton jersey ....
and has anyone found bamboo to be better/worse/similar absorbancy to hemp?

planning my fabric purchase which will hopefully be before bub comes!
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Post by Dunners » Tue Jul 18, 2006 9:25 am

Sorry Mama Anne - didn't see your other question. Yes, theoretically absorption will increase over time. I only have terry and fleece hemp and I couldn't tell you there was a significant different in absorption (the fleece is brushed terry).

I couldn't give you a comparison of bamboo with hemp. Maybe someone else can?
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Post by ditto » Sat Apr 07, 2007 1:38 pm

I've just done an absorbency test of eight fabrics, all measuring 7x11cm. All had been hot-washed once. I sat them in warm water for 10 mins, hung them over a knife and let them drip for two minutes, and then weighed them. Here are the results:

Bamboo/cotton towelling: absorbed 26ml
$4 beach towel (Spotlight): absorbed 22ml
Burley knit terry (Greenbeans): absorbed 22ml
Microfibre (Greenbeans): absorbed 20ml
Cotton velour towelling (Fabric Warehouse): absorbed 20ml
Hemp/cotton fleece (Greenbeans): absorbed 18ml
Hemp/cotton French terry (Greenbeans): absorbed 14ml
Bamboo/cotton fleece (Nappy Makers/spikybrain): absorbed 14ml
Bamboo/cotton French terry (Leanne's co-op): absorbed 12ml

The top five fabrics are bulky compared with the bottom four fabrics.

Bamboo/cotton French terry held 67% of the moisture it absorbed after it was well wrung.
Next was hemp French terry, at 57%.
Then cotton velour towelling at 50%, bamboo/cotton towelling at 46%, BKT and the beach towel at 45%, hemp fleece at 44%, bamboo/cotton fleece at 42%, and microfibre at 40%.

I tested the speed of absorbency and spread before I did the absorbency tests. (I didn't test the beach towel in these tests.) All had been hot-washed once and were dry. I dropped warm water onto the middle of the flat side of them using a syringe. The quickest to absorb were microfibre, bamboo/cotton towelling, bamboo/cotton French terry, and cotton velour towelling. The quickest to spread were microfibre, bamboo/cotton French terry, and cotton velour towelling.

The ones slow to absorb were bamboo/cotton fleece, hemp French terry, hemp fleece, and BKT. The ones slow to spread were bamboo/cotton towelling, bamboo/cotton fleece, hemp fleece, and BKT.
Mama to Braden (5/05), Rosalia (6/08), Corin (3/10) and Annelise (2/14)

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Post by annalisef » Thu Aug 02, 2007 10:04 am

I know this thread is a bit old, but I was reading with interest....

As Ditto pointed out, the different fabrics have different densities/bulkiness. Perhaps a more fair (scientific) test would be to compare the absorbancies of the same volume of fabric, rather than the same size (area-wise) piece? Then the hemp would probably come into its own.

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Post by Netty » Sat Aug 11, 2007 9:29 am

At some stage I hope to do some tests/calculations comparing absorbancy with fabric volume, also testing whole nappies as things like prefolds cannot be covered in tests like the ones done here, this would also be more representative of the way the fabrics are used.
Also a question: to test the fabrics more as they are used, I was thinking, would it be better to see how much they can soak up rather than emersing them? Or would it be too difficult to get an accurate indication of when they have absorbed all they can?
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Post by ditto » Sat Aug 11, 2007 9:49 am

I tried that way as well, Netty - but yes, it's too hard to know when it's full. If it's sitting on a flat surface it looks like it's absorbed everything, but when you pick it up there's a puddle underneath it, so it hasn't really. I also tried weighing the dry samples, but mine were too small to get accurate weights. That would work for bigger ones - by weight - I don't know how you'd do it by bulk.
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Post by Dunners » Sat Aug 11, 2007 10:48 am

I posted some results ages ago - shall try to find it later. I weighed the nappy (scientific scales at school), soaked, hung to drip for a time, weighed again, calculated volume & percentage soaked. This was before the days of bamboo & organic cotton nappies though ;)

ETA link http://thenappynetwork.org.nz/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?t=2418
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Post by cat » Thu Sep 06, 2007 9:07 am

What's BKT???

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Post by mama anne » Thu Sep 06, 2007 5:59 pm

burley knit terry. here's the info from http://www.greenbeans.co.nz

Gorgeous soft, stretchy knit fabric with long thick loops. Great for boosters, towels, bathrobes, absorbent layers in fitted nappies...

85% cotton / 15% polyester for durability

Natural colour

Very thick and thirsty

165cm wide

Stretch: Width 75%, Length 39%

FREE SHIPPING in NZ!
Working Mama of miss7yo and mr5yo.

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