Establishing a sound business plan

August 31, 2009

By John Baker Dwight Eisenhower, when contemplating the plan for the invasion of Normandy and northwest Europe during World War II, said, “Plans are nothing. Planning is everything.” His view was that while both are necessary, plans are nothing but static documents, yet planning is a responsive and dynamic action that brings focus to uncertainty. …

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J. Ennis Fabrics launches 2 new collections

J. Ennis Fabrics has introduced two new lines of upholstery fabrics. The Treasures II collection, featuring more than 100 patterns and stripes, is ideal for use in furniture and accent pieces. The Palette collection, made for upholstery and bedding applications, is comprised of three solid color books. The books, titled energy, equality and renewal, contain …

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Finding a niche: Small markets, big profits

August 30, 2009

How and why digital graphics companies are succeeding because they found their niche. By Gail Nickel-Kailing I was sent on a quest to find digital graphics companies that are printing on textiles in niche markets. So what is a niche? Why a niche market? And who are these people? “Merriam-Webster” says that a niche market …

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Advancements in outdoor fabrics help get the message out

Improvements to outdoor fabrics have led to greater opportunities for digital printing. By Holly O’Dell Digital printing has opened the door to new possibilities in outdoor fabric applications. End product manufacturers, not to mention their customers, are becoming more aware of fabric capabilities in outdoor settings, as well as their uses, which include retail applications, …

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Maximize your equipment efficiency

When to upgrade and when to buy a new printer: A guide to increasing your efficiency on a tight budget. By Andrea Swensson A downshift in the economy doesn’t necessarily have to mean a downshift in profits, and one of the most important aspects to consider when examining the financial side of your printing business …

Museum exhibit to feature textiles

August 28, 2009

The Museum of International Folk Art, Santa Fe, N.M., will host an exhibit titled Material World: Treasures from the Textile Collection, which will feature a collection of textiles and costumes from all over the world. “Making and embellishing textiles can be a powerful tool of socialization and a reflection of cultural values,” says Dr. Bobbie …

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A last resort financing fix and more

By Mark E. Battersby A recently announced $15 billion, multi-pronged plan is designed to help ease the credit crunch affecting so many marine fabrication businesses. One part of the plan earmarks extra funding for loans and technical assistance by the U.S. Small Business Administration’s (SBA) “microloan” lenders. In addition to extra funding for microloans, new …

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Polyfab USA introduces 3 new colors

August 27, 2009

Polyfab USA, Manhattan Beach, Calif., has added three new colors to its Polytex® line of knitted shade fabric and two new colors to its Comtex® line of knitted shade fabric. The new colors, which were added to increase options for customers, include red, café and cappuccino. Polytex will be available in all three colors while …

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Spotting tent quality

August 26, 2009

Knowing how to spot superior shelters can save the day. By Barb Ernster John Crowley can spot a quality tent just by looking at it. “You get a feel for a good tent when you see it. It looks structurally superb,” says the general manager of ProEm Distinctive Tents in Denver, Colo. He sums up …

Specialized Technology Resources lab receives China Metrology Accreditation

Specialized Technology Resources Inc. (STR), Enfield, Conn., received a China Metrology Accreditation (CMA) for its lab in Shenzhen, China. CMAs are presented by the Administration of Quality and Technical Supervision at the Municipal Levels after an assessment of the metrology capabilities of a laboratory that tests the quality and safety of products sold to the …

Birdair Inc. wins Talisman Centre roofing contract

August 25, 2009

The Talisman Centre for Sport and Wellness in Calgrary, Alberta, Canada, awarded Birdair Inc., Amherst, N.Y., a contract to replace its 162,000 square foot roof. The new roof will be constructed of a Tensotherm™ with Nanogel® fabric membrane roofing system.

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Dome promotes Vancouver Olympics

August 24, 2009

It takes more than athletes to create a successful Olympics. By Janice Kleinschmidt A lot has changed since 776 B.C. (the first written record of the Olympics)—and even since 1896 (the first “modern” Olympics). These days, the games entail building permanent structures (i.e., stadiums), as well as temporary structures used before, during and after the …

AATCC announces details of 2010 materials competition

The American Association of Textile Chemists and Colorists (AATCC) announced its 2010 materials competition will focus on three main areas. The fields include industrial sports materials, medical materials and devices and smart nanofibrous materials. Winners of the competition, organized by the AATCC’s Materials Interest Group, will receive cash prizes.

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Kentucky Derby Festival features 241,149 square feet of temporary structures

August 21, 2009

Providing temporary environments for ‘the most exciting two minutes in sports’ required creativity and attention to detail. Each year, for the past 135 years, people have flocked to Louisville, Ky., to sip mint juleps, enjoy sumptuous southern fare, cheer as some of the finest horses in the world race to the finish—and make a wager …

AATCC announces 2010 design competition theme

The American Association of Textile Chemists and Colorists (AATCC) announced the theme of its 2010 design competition will be “Summer Bling!” The theme, developed by the AATCC’s Concept 2 Consumer® (C2C) interest group, includes designs for summer apparel. Winners will receive cash prizes and a cotton passport by Pantone®.

Agion earns gold certification

August 20, 2009

Agion has received a Cradle to Cradle Gold Certification from McDonough Braungart Design Chemistry (MBDC), resulting in the first gold level certification for an antimicrobial technology. After receiving the silver certification last year, the company decided to go for the gold in the areas of renewable energy, water conservation, material safety and social responsibility.

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Shop layouts that produce big payouts

August 19, 2009

Efficient and proficient shop layout and workflow optimize production, inventory, safety and the customer experience. By Maura Keller Marine fabricators have a desire to maximize their shop layouts to optimize production, inventory, safety and customer experiences. But that is easier said than done, especially when it comes to small, clutter-filled shop environments. Can it be …

NCFI Polyurethanes provides training in the green building industry

NCFI Polyurethanes, Mount Airy, N.C., is providing training for sustainable insulation contractors. The company notes the expansion of the green building industry as a motivating factor to seek out and provide training for qualified professionals. A recent McGraw-Hill Construction report states the industry could earn up to $140 billion by 2013.

Turkish manufacturer requests Karl Mayer machinery

August 18, 2009

Karl Mayer, Obertshausen, Germany, received an order for its new open-width dyeing and sizing machine from Turkish manufacturer Şirikçioğlu, Kahramanmaraş, Turkey. The machine features deep color technology, which Şirikçioğlu will use to produce denim apparel.

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Unique structure built for Australian sporting event

August 17, 2009

HTS Höcker Germany recently won the contract to design, manufacture and install what is believed to be the world’s largest and most structurally complex demountable building. The unique structure, known as the Pit Pavilion, will be used exclusively for the Clipsal 500 V8 Super Car race held annually at Victoria Park, Adelaide, South Australia. The …

Glen Raven facility gets ISO certified

The Glen Raven facility in Anderson, S.C., earned an ISO certification for environmental excellence. An independent auditor inspected the facility to make sure ISO 14001:2004 environmental management standards were met in all aspects of operation. The facility, which produces Sunbrella® performance fabrics, has practiced a recycling program for 20 years and stopped sending waste to …

Health Savings Accounts

August 14, 2009

By William J. Lynott As a business owner, you’re fighting what seems like a losing battle against rising health care costs. While this problem isn’t likely to disappear, the Health Savings Account (HSA) legislation, signed into law in 2003, offers you the possibility of making a dramatic reduction in your costs. In their first year …

Invista introduces new sustainability platform

Invista has launched the Cordura® Cares Program to emphasize the company’s commitment to sustainable practices. Sustainable performance, corporate responsibility and enduring materials comprise the three pillars of the program, which was launched at the Outdoor Retailer Summer Market 2009 trade show.

P2i raises $6.7 million to support company growth

August 13, 2009

P2i Ltd., Oxfordshire, U.K. has raised $6.7 million to increase the company’s global presence in a wide range of markets. The company plans to invest the money in facilities, marketing, sales and equipment. The funds were provided by shareholders such as Swarraton Partners, Naxos Capital Partners and Unilever Ventures.

Trützschler launches nonwovens unit

August 12, 2009

Trützschler GmbH, Dülmen, Germany, has launched a nonwovens unit as part of a recent company restructuring. The unit is comprised of Fleissner GmbH in Egelsbach, Germany, Erko Trützschler GmbH in Dülmen, Germany and American Trützschler in Charolotte, N.C.

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History, development, and future prospects for geosynthetics industries in China (Part 1 of 2)

By Jingkui Chi Abstract This article presents an introduction to the development of China’s geosynthetics production, applications, testing, and research, and discusses the market supply and demand as well as development trends. 1. Introduction 1.1 Development of geosynthetics in China The production and application of geosynthetics in China started in the late 1970s. Those materials …

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Geosynthetics magazine launches new website

August 10, 2009

Geosynthetics magazine, an IFAI publication serving the geosynthetics industry, has launched a new website. The site features the current issue of the magazine, up-to-date geosynthetics news, a blog and two years of previously published content, along with PDFs of older issues. New issues of the magazine will be uploaded on the first of every other …

Blind painter’s artwork inspires cotton fabric collection

August 1, 2009

George Mendoza was a promising high-school athlete when macular degeneration, a retinal disorder that leaves blind spots and distortions in the central vision, made him legally blind. Mendoza used his disability to fuel a passion for athletics, writing and painting, becoming the subject of two PBS documentaries and an exhibitor at galleries around the country. …

Turnout suit material provides functional protection

Problem: Firefighter turnout gear needs to provide full functionality, but be ready to provide protection from extremely high temperatures when the need arises. Solution: When DuPont™ Nomex® On Demand™ is exposed to temperatures approaching 250° F, the batt expands four to five times over its original thickness, providing up to a 20 percent increase in …

Recacril woven acrylic fabric used for variety of applications

Compiled by Juli Case I have a client asking for a fabric I’ve never heard of before: Recacril. What is it and where can I get it? Recacril is a woven, solution-dyed acrylic fabric that originates in Europe. It’s used in awnings, casual furniture, and marine applications. SOURCE Recasens USA, Bala Cynwyd, Pa., U.S.A., +1 …

University celebrates 80 years of textile research

In 2009, the Department of Textiles at the University of Ghent, Belgium, celebrates 80 years of textile leadership with an anniversary event, the 6th International Conference on Textile and Polymer Biotechnology and Smart Textiles Salon, an exhibition of smart textile prototypes scheduled for September 23–26, 2009. The University continues its research success as coordinator of …

Strap offers safe, flexible binding

Problem: Rigid strapping systems can snap back or cut the worker securing a load. Solution: Gator Strap from Burlan Corp. will not snap back and potentially cause an injury. Soft, flexible and lightweight, but as strong as steel, it won’t scratch, dent or mar the surface of the product that it is binding. It easily …

Plastic-coated bungee hooks available in 3/8-inch size

Compiled by Juli Case I need some plastic-coated bungee hooks in a 3/8-inch size. The hook portion has to be long enough to hold bungee cord. Do you have any suppliers? We found a couple of sources for the bungee hooks in the size you need: SOURCE Fasnap Corp., Elkhart, Ind., U.S.A., +1 574 264 …

Kentucky racing sets standards for safety vests

Later this year, the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission will require minimum standards for safety vests worn by jockeys, riders of horse or stable ponies, assistant starters and handlers at starting gates. Adoption of the new rules will expand the range of safety vests and allow jockeys to wear gear that exceeds the minimum standards. “Safety …

Setter allows safe and efficient washer setting

Problem: There isn’t a safe and efficient means to set washers into fabric. Solution: The Simple Setter from Shademaker Inc. prevents hurt fingers by holding the washer in place and bending the prongs in one operation with no other tools needed, or by turning the tool over, all four prongs can be set in one …

Alnet shade fabrics not distributed in the U.S.

Compiled by Juli Case We’ve had an architect quote a fabric called Alnet for a shade structure. Where can we purchase this material? Alnet is the fabric manufacturer; they have a family of shade fabrics, including Cooltone and Sunblock. The materials are knit high-density polyethylene. We contacted the company, which is located in South Africa, …

Nontextile super swimsuits don’t suit FINA

Smooth, impermeable swimsuits broke onto the international scene at the Beijing Olympics, worn by gold medal winner Michael Phelps in setting one record after another. In a move to eliminate this technological advantage from swimming competition, the Fédération Internationale de Natation (FINA), international swimming’s governing body, plans to ban all nontextile swimwear. FINA established a …

Clothing provides lightweight chemical protection

Problem: Clothing that provides optimum protection against hazardous chemicals can be bulky and heavy. Solution: The ContiBarrier System® features high-resistance, media-impermeable layers for optimum protection from chemicals and gases, but is lightweight and easy to work. Hazardous substances, such as chlorine, chlorinated hydrocarbons and ammonia, are unable to penetrate the barrier layer, and a high …

Finding an Omega sewing machine manual

Compiled by Juli Case I bought an Omega sewing machine at an auction and need to get a manual for it. Do you know who makes it? The Omega appears to be primarily a home sewing machine and comes out of Italy. The manufacturer is a company by the name of Necchi. A U.S. representative …

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Lancer Textiles to service TenCate customers

TenCate™ Industrial Fabrics has appointed Lancer Textiles, Elkin Park, Pa., as master distributor of its products to customers seeking small quantities, infrequent orders or special converting, such as slitting or re-rolling. Customers unable to meet the minimum order quantity now have access to the same first-quality products, allowing TenCate to expand its market. Lancer Textiles …

Vehicle armor creates portable safety zone

Problem: Vehicle armor is a permanent installation and cannot be transferred to another vehicle. Solution: Mayotex Mobile Armor Solution (MPD) is an efficient and cost-effective mobile armor that creates a personal safety zone inside any vehicle. With no structural changes to the MPD or the car, the device fits onto any car seat as easily …

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Nonwoven drainage composite comprised of 30 percent recycled content

Mirafi® MiraGreen™ D is a nonwoven drainage geotextile comprised of 30 percent (LEED calculated) recycled content, for site drainage applications that require a reliable product, as well as one that reduces dependence on virgin petroleum-based resins. The lightweight nonwovens are predominantly used for subsurface drainage applications along highways, green roofs, athletic fields and within embankments …

Textile machinery investments down

A survey by the International Textile Manufacturers Federation (ITMF) shows that textile machinery manufacturers recorded declines of between 3-66 percent in shipments in 2008. The ITMF report covers spinning, texturing, weaving, large circular knitting, flat knitting and finishing machinery. Investment in textile machinery boomed between 2003 and 2007, but the faltering world economy and the …

Shock cords alllow secure adjustments

Problem: Traditional bungee cords lack a safety clip and can slide off and cause injury, especially while being installed or released. Solution: Tarpline shock cords, using the Hippo Clip, can be installed loose and securely adjusted to the desired tension while out of harm’s way. The shock cord is made of natural rubber and wrapped …

LED light sticks produce white light in various environments

Lumenrail® LED light sticks are just 3/4-inch wide, ETL listed, and produce brilliant, cool white light indoors or outdoors in both wet and dry locations. Available in lengths from 6 to 60 inches, they may be mounted on walls, ceilings or under cabinets. The fixtures are fully dimmable when used in conjunction with listed, aftermarket …

Solutia Inc. becomes Ascend Performance Materials

SK Capital Partners , an investment firm based in New York City and Boca Raton, Fla., has added Solutia Inc.’s integrated nylon chemical, plastic and fiber business to its portfolio. The business has been re-named Ascend Performance Materials, and will be led by former American Standard chairman and CEO Frederic Poses. Solutia/Ascend had $1.8 billion …

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Gallagher visualizes success in the tent rental industry

Jim Gallagher communicates excellence—professionally. By Sigrid Tornquist “Sure, I could go out and do everything myself. I could create my own website, put a couple of Polaroids on there and say ‘look at me.’ But how am I going to grow my business that way?” says Jim Gallagher, president of Partytime Productions Inc. in Addison, …

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Gandinnovations releases innovative flatbed printer

The 1224 NanoJet2 Flatbed uses 20 fourth-generation Ricoh grayscale piezoelectric print heads to produce the highest resolution images available on any flatbed printer, at a speed capable of maintaining any size production required. The strong vacuum bed holds more than 73 qualified rigid and flexible materials, up to 2 inches thick, keeping them firmly in …

China, India becoming trading partners

When Tata Consultancy Services, a worldwide firm providing IT, business solutions and outsourcing services, set up a development center in Hangzhou, China, Indian workers asked for—and got—an Indian vegetarian restaurant. Historically, China and India have disputed over the common border, but are moving into a new phase as both lose U.S. and European market share. …

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Fabric benefits tight exhibits market

Fabric exhibits transcend economic and environmental concerns for a natural fit in a tight market. By Barb Ernster No one disputes the fact that the exhibits market is hurting, but exhibit builders are not dismayed. They’re adapting to new demands for efficient, economical and longer-lasting designs with sustainable and changeable features. And fabric is part …