Water Resistant Fabric
In order to make a fabric water resistant it is usually coated with some form of waterproofing agent such as wax, rubber or polyvinyl chloride. Other forms of waterproof fabrics are made out of synthetic materials that are naturally water resistant. One of the most common and classic uses for this type of material is the rubberized cloth used to make the traditional British Mackintosh rain jacket. This jacket has been around for decades and is one of the first water resistant jackets to be patented.
One of the most important and unique features of water resistant fabric is that while it prevents water droplets from passing from the outside to the inside of a jacket, it still allows water vapor to pass through from the inside to outside. This allows the person wearing a waterproof jacket like the Mackintosh to stay dry in the rain and keeps them from getting soggy from the inevitable buildup of sweat on might get during a walk on a rainy day.
In order to classify water resistant fabrics properly a standardized laboratory testing procedure has been established so that all manufacturers are working to the same standards. The measurement is recorded in millimeters of water.
To establish the correct reading a column of water is suspended above the fabric. The more water in millimeters that can be added to the column without it seeping through the cloth the better the cloth is said to be, with mid range fabrics averaging 5,000 mm of water resistance.
At the same time this same water resistant fabric needs to be able to breath, this is measured by recording the speed at which water vapor passes through the fabric over a 24 hour period and is measure in grams/ square meter of cloth/ 24 hour period or abbreviated as g/m2/d, which is often reduced to a simple g. The average rating here is 5,000 g. thus a good quality mid range cloth will have a reading of 5,000 mm and 5,000 g. However these reading may not mean as much as the testing seems to make them seem as garments with far lower numbers hold up very well even in pouring rain.
At the same time there are some new fabrics that have been manufactured to be water resistant fabric merely by virtue of their design. Essentially the manufacturer combines two separate layers of different fabrics.
One of them is water resistant, while the other is windproof; some of these fabrics actually fail the hydrostatic test yet will keep you perfectly dry in very heavy downpours. One last method to create a water resist fabric would be to use one of the various types of spray water proofing, although some of these sprays do have an adverse effect on the fabric itself over time.
If you are in need of a water resistant fabric for your project there is only one place you need to go and that is Seattle Fabrics. Here you find a full spectrum of water proof fabrics along with many other types of fabric, along with the patterns and hardware you need to create many different items. They offer the best in outdoor fabrics along with top notch customer service for your convenience.
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