Graduate Thesis Or Dissertation

 

A comparative study of the construction and quality of silk materials purchased in China and the United States Public Deposited

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https://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/5t34sm88h

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  • The question about the quality of Chinese silk has always been of interest not only to the manufacturer and consumers in China but also to people who are wearing and dealing with silk all over the world. Judging of silk fabrics by means of the feel and on the basis of sales information has been realized an inadequate and unreliable method. Hence, a more objective method of determining the quality of silk fabrics is desirable for everyone concerned with silk. Cognizance has been given to the use of scientific methods of textile testing in the United States. How far the tests are applicable to Chinese silk fabrics is not known. In this comparative study of both American and Chinese fabrics under the same methods of testing it was found that the American method of finding the amount of metallic weighting was unnecessary for Chinese fabrics. Fifty fabrics, 29 from China and 21 from the United States, were bought. The commercial standards of "woven dress fabric" promulgated by the United States Department of Commerce, the United States Bureau of Standards, and the Standards of the American Society for Testing Materials were adopted. Test methods of this study consisted of tensile strength test, resistance of yarn slippage, shrinkage after dry cleaning, color fastness, and metallic weighting content test. The findings indicate the difference in qualities demanded of silk fabrics in both countries. First, the width of Chinese fabrics varied a great deal, the most common being 27-30 inches; while those of the United States were wider, the popular width being 39 inches. Second, more brocades were found in the Chinese silk market, while there is more demand for plain weaves in the United States. Third, the colors of the Chinese silk fabrics were found more pure and there was a variety of different shades and tints that are more or less neutralized in the American fabrics. The results of this study show that of the 29 Chinese silk fabrics tested all except three were composed of pure cultivated worn silk. The tensile strength of 11 fabrics in the warp and 18 in the filling rated below 30 pounds, which seems rather low in comparison with all the studies and findings in regard to American silk. Seventeen fabrics did not slow any yarn slippage warp-wise at the seams, and 24 were not affected filling-wise. The percentage of shrinkage was not more than 5 per cent in any case. None were affected as to color by perspiration and dry cleaning, and only three fabrics changed color slightly when a hot iron was applied. Only one sample contained more than 10 per cent weighting. The tests made on the 21 American silk fabrics showed that the information given by sales persons concerning the composition of fiber was accurate. Only five fabrics in the warp and eight materials in the filling registered tensile strengths of less than 30 pounds, a result which is lower than those found by others. Seven fabrics in the warp and 19 in the filling did not pull at the seams. Shrinkage from dry cleaning was very slight. The shortcoming of these fabrics seemed to be in the resistance to spotting. Eleven out of 21 fabrics were either slightly or greatly affected by perspiration. No change was noted in the commercial dry-cleaning process. All but one was affected under the hot pressing test. Four fabrics were found to be weighted with more than the legitimate amount of metallic substance. Two of them, however, were specified as weighted silks at the time of the purchase. It may be concluded from this study that the facts about qualities of silk fabrics cannot help manufacturers to prosper their trade nor can they help the consumers to get more service out of their dresses. Facts are helpful in so far as they are adapted to the purpose and needs of the individual. Also, this points to the need of further study and working out of different sets of standards and specifications for various types of silk fabrics.
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