Finishing is a process that enables desired hands and other functions utilizing characteristics of the fabrics.
Hand feeling provides softness or hardness, and other functions provide water repellency, water absorbency, anti-static, anti-bacterial, anti-odor, flame retardant, and so on, depending on the demands.
Final products are expected to meet the required specs as well as the product stability in order to mass manufacture.
Processing methods include continuous process, batch process, and coating.
WR (water repellent) agent is used on the fabrics that are required water repellency, such as apparel products; outdoor wear, sportswear, and material products; bag, umbrella, and tent.
WR agent with Fluorine type macromolecule (C6) used to be the mainstream but Fluorine-free WR agent (C0) became more favored starting with apparel products in the recent year. Global apparel brands have declared total abolition of Fluorine type WR agent by 2020, which has triggered the development war for Fluorine-free WR agents (C0).
NICCA's WR agent has a global share of over 20%, and we continue to strive with the development of C6 and C0 type WR agent.
In general fabrics are easy to catch fire, so treating with FR agent slows down the ignition and prevents flames from expanding.
There are specs for fire retardancy for curtains, automotive materials like car seats and industrial materials, and in order to pass the specs NICCA thrives to research and develop FR agents.
Use of synthetic Fabrics such as Polyester and Nylon used to be limited due to its hydrophobic characteristics that wouldn't absorb water and sweat, but with the improvement of yarn shape and the development of the water absorbent and fast-drying agent, the use of synthetic fabrics has expanded to inner wear and sporting wear, providing comfort.
NICCA will continue to develop and launch new products toward this ever growing market.
There are 2 types of anti-static agents:
One of them is for troubleshooting the statics during the sewing process. Hydrophobic fibers like Polyester and Nylon are prone to be electrostatically charged, and they attract dust and stick to fabrics during cutting and sewing process, which cause production inefficiency and product quality issues.
Second type is to improve the discomfort caused by statics on the final products. If there is a static when changing clothes, fabrics stick to the skin and cause discomfort.
NICCA is developing these 2 types of anti-static agents and strives to advance in its field.
As market trend changes and spinning & weaving technologies progress, we are starting to see more light weight materials. Light weight materials tend to have seam slippage after sewing, so we need countermeasures in order to meet the apparel standard.
Anti-slip agents were developed for the purpose of preventing seam slippage.
Although anti-slip agent has a disadvantage of making the hand harder, NICCA develops products that resolve this drawback.
These agents prevent yarn breakage from sewing needles and improve the sewing quality.
At NICCA we develop high melting point wax type and silicone type needle cuting & sewing improver.
Softening agents adjust the fabrics' hand and feel. General softener made with fatty acid type and silicone oil are mainstream, and typically the more the agents soften, the more they inhibit water absorption.
In recent years depends on the purpose of final goods, softening agents for underwear that is required to absorb perspiration and sportwear are sought to be excellent in water absorption.
At NICCA we develop softening agents that have both excellent softening and water absorption functions.
Bacteria grow by obtaining nutrients such as sweat and sebum that got on fiber product, and these sweat and sebum that were decomposed in this process cause the sweat odor.
Bad odor can also be released while laundries are hang in the room if bacteria grow on sweat and sebum that did not get washed off of fabrics completely.
The process that prevents bacteria from growing on the fabrics is anti-bacterial process.
At NICCA we develop optimal anti-bacterial agent for both synthetic and cotton.
Odor can be eliminated by applying the anti-odor agent to the fabrics and get rid of smell of sweat and components that cause sick-house with chemical reaction and/or chemical absorption.
At NICCA we develop anti-odor agent tailored to odor component.
For the continuous processing, the impregnating tank with treatment agent, which is adjusted to certain concentration, and padding machine, which is constructed with mangle controls impregnation rate by squeezing solution, are most frequently utilized.
They are interlocked with drying machine such as pin tenter, non-touch dryer, or shrink surfer, and after padding fabrics are continued on with drying, baking, and curing process.
There are two types of padding; dry pad that dry fabrics are treated, and wet pad that fabrics are wet when treated; however, since managing the add-ons is important for function processing dry padding is mainstream.
With batch treatment, fabrics will be treated while soaked in liquid flow dyeing machine, washer or drum dyeing machine each batch.
Because mechanical impact is applied it is effective for the improvement of hand if used in softening treatment.
It should be noted that these chemical solution are required to have resistance against temperature and mechanical impact.
Coating is the method that one side of fabrics are coated with chemical solution continuously.
There are knife, comma, gravure, and reverse coater, and by choosing the appropriate coating method coated amount can be adjusted from low to high add-ons.
There are two preparation methods; using thickener and foaming mechanically, in which stabilities of viscosity and expansion ratio are required.
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