Natural silk production technology
Silk is one of the most beloved and demanded materials. It is lightweight, durable and has a pleasant tactile feel. High-quality clothing, accessories, home textiles and much more are sewn from it. We produce silk in an industrial way. First, silkworm caterpillars are raised and fattened. After the formation of cocoons, threads are obtained from them, and then by the weaving method - a finished fabric. This is a long and difficult process that requires painstaking work.
Raw materials for the extraction of silk
It is produced by the silkworm. The most valuable representative of this species is Bombyx mori, which is cultured and does not live in the wild. It alone forms the cocoon from which the highest quality Mulberry silk fiber is obtained. It is from this variety that silk is produced at BBS. Having hatched from a cocoon, butterflies do not fly and see nothing. They live only a few days, which, however, are enough for mating and breeding. One female can lay up to 500 eggs within five days. Silkworm eggs are small in size, 500 pieces weigh no more than five grams. Caterpillars hatch from the cocoon on the 10-12th day. The required amount for the production of 1 kg of silk is about 6 thousand individuals.From one insect get up to 1550 meters of silk (that is, silk thread) with a thickness of 20 to 30 micrometers.To transform into a "pupa", silkworms consume mulberry leaves day and night without stopping. The developmental cycle from larva to adult, which reproduces silk of caterpillar, is about a month. All this time, it is necessary to accurately follow the established feeding system of silkworms. Having increased its mass by 10 thousand times, each begins to form a cocoon with the help of the salivary gland. The shell is formed within three days and has a creamy color and glossy shade. Finished cocoons are collected and further processed. The main thing is, to do it on time.
The fiber that makes up the cocoon contains fibroin (75%) and sericin (25%). Fats, waxes and minerals are also present in small amounts.
The process of obtaining a thread includes several stages:
1.Boiling: the cocoons are thrown into hot, even boiling water. This is done to flush out the sericin and de-stick the threads.
2.Removing excess moisture. The silk fiber that makes up the cocoon is thinner than a human hair. And in length it reaches an average of one and a half kilometers. It is easy to tear when wet, so it is necessary to remove the water at least partially. For example, Thais, who are engaged in manual silk production, use rice for this purpose. The product placed in a raw silk mass, has excellent liquid absorption.
3.Pulling. A thin thread is wound on a special device - a spool. Most often, the fiber is folded several times until the desired thickness is obtained.
4.Whitening and staining. The color of natural raw materials is creamy, so it is first discolored with hydrogen peroxide, and then is it painted. The structure of the silk thread allows deep saturation of the fabric, as a result of which the color remains for a long time.
Fabrication of canvas
In order to become fabric, the threads must enter the loom. Our silk is woven on modern industrial looms of Belgian and French production such as Itema IP54, Bonas B-8510 (16896 hooks), Bonas B-8510 (27648 hooks), VEGA 3180D, ADTI-1200-54, GR203, YC1 / 4, ZJ -306, ZJ-203, ZJ-302, ZJ-206.
The finished fabric is usually subjected to additional processing, namely:
*revitalization - It is treated with a solution of vinegar essence to obtain shine and rich color;
*decating - sprayed with steam under high pressure in order to prevent shrinkage.
To obtain a colored or plain fabric, a silk fabric is dyed in a solid color or printed on it, using a digital printer.
The technologies for the production of natural silk have hardly changed over time. This process is still difficult and time consuming, so the price of finished products is not the most democratic. However, this does not stop consumers who value product quality over cost.