North American rental revenue to reach $38 billion in 2013

December 20, 2013

Total equipment rental revenue in North America for 2013 is expected to reach $38 billion, according to the latest figures released by the American Rental Association (ARA) from its ARA Rental Market Monitor™ service updated in late October. This figure represents a 6.2 percent increase over 2012 with fourth quarter revenue growth projected to be …

Free webinar, Jan. 15: NanoTechnology, human health and the environment

December 19, 2013

Answers to the questions surrounding nanosilver. Join Dr. Jan Beringer and Dr. Timo Hammer as they share the results from two extensive, publicly funded studies regarding the human- and eco-toxicity of nanosilver. Hohenstein delivers answers to questions regarding the possibility of environmental leeching after home laundering as well as how the emission of airborne nano …

New warranty for marine and awning acrylic fabric

December 18, 2013

Recasens USA, a subsidiary of Recasens SA, has announced a new 10-year limited warranty for Recacril® marine and awning acrylic fabric. Recacril fabrics have been sold and used throughout the U.S. for more than 10 years and have exhibited outstanding durability and fade resistance in all regions of the county. In addition, Recasens only sources …

AATCC Foundation announces Endowed Scholarship Program

December 17, 2013

The AATCC Foundation Inc. has launched a new endowed scholarship program that allows a sponsoring person, family, or company to donate funds that will form the basis for an ongoing, annual scholarship. Donations to the AATCC Foundation Endowed Scholarship Program, as it is called, are generally tax deductible. Individuals or organizations considering participating in this …

Trelleborg airbed: still airtight

December 16, 2013

An airbed manufactured by Trelleborg more than 50 years ago was recently found in a basement in Sweden, still in its original packaging. Trelleborg’s company historian, Carl Aspegren, picked it up, pumped it up and it was as airtight as when it was first made. Airbeds were one of Trelleborg’s post-war signature products, with production …

Bonar purchases geosynthetic firm

December 13, 2013

Bonar, a Dutch producer and supplier of synthetic nonwovens, wovens, three-dimensional polymeric mats and composites for a variety of industrial applications, has acquired Texiplast a.s., a Slovakian manufacturer of woven and knitted geosynthetic fabrics for retaining walls, roads, landfills and other infrastructure. Texiplast (formerly known as the Kordarna Geosynthetics Division) was purchased in September for …

Techmer PM acquires engineered plastics company

December 12, 2013

TP Composites (TPC), based in Aston, Pa., a custom formulator and engineered plastics manufacturer, will become part of the Techmer PM family, according to John Manuck, chairman and CEO of Techmer PM. The TPC facility in Aston will operate under the Techmer Engineered Solutions (TES) business unit, and will be added to existing facilities in …

Toray acquires large-tow carbon fiber company

December 11, 2013

The demand for large-tow carbon fiber, used for applications such as wind turbine blades and reinforced plastic compounds, is growing, and Toray Industries, Tokyo, Japan, wanted a presence in the market. Toray, with strengths in organic synthetic chemistry, polymer chemistry and biotechnology in textiles and plastics, will acquire Zoltek, a St. Louis, Mo., company that …

Martex Fiber acquires Waste Services Division of Bollag Intl.

December 10, 2013

Martex Fiber Southern Corp. has acquired the Charlotte–based Waste Services Division of Bollag International. Bollag collects and markets textile wastes including natural and synthetic waste, cuttings, rags and fabric remnants. The acquisition of Bollag is part of a larger global expansion strategy Martex Fiber is pursuing, which includes the June 2013 acquisition of JBM Fibers …

ECO CIRCLEâ„¢ fibers to be used in CBA basketball uniforms

December 9, 2013

The Teijin Group has announced that it is providing its chemically recycled polyester fiber, ECO CIRCLE™ fiber, for the production of uniforms worn by players in the China Basketball Association (CBA). The uniforms, made by Li Ning Co. Ltd., a major Chinese manufacturer of sports apparel, have been worn by CBA teams since the season …

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Outer Limits: the aerospace exhibit at IFAI Expo 2013

December 6, 2013

By Galynn Nordstrom This year’s Specialty Fabrics Showcase on the exhibit floor at IFAI Expo featured a 1,000-square-foot display of aerospace products made from specialty fabrics: everything from an eye-grabbing hang glider from Gray Bird Air Sports and an astronaut cooling suit from the University of Minnesota to a debris shield (Aerospace Fabrication & Materials), …

Top 10 mistakes for businesses to avoid when dealing with a disaster

December 5, 2013

Business continuity strategies offered at free SBA/Agility webinar, Dec. 10. What are the biggest and most common mistakes business owners make when dealing with a disaster? Whether it’s property damage caused by a flood or the loss of sensitive data thanks to a hacked email account, how you respond within the first few hours of …

The 2013 ShowStoppers winners from IFAI Expo in Orlando

December 4, 2013

Eight exhibitors chosen by attendees as the best new products at the show. By Galynn Nordstrom For our second annual ShowStoppers competition, IFAI received a total of 97 entries from 53 companies that were exhibiting at IFAI Specialty Fabrics Expo 2013 in Orlando. These eight products received the most votes from show attendees on opening …

Cellulosic fiber production set to grow

December 3, 2013

Strong growth predicted as uncertainty in the cotton market persists. Cellulosic fiber production is set to continue growing rapidly in the coming years, according to Issue No 165 of Textile Outlook International from the global business information company Textiles Intelligence. Faced with soaring raw cotton prices in 2011, many textile and apparel producers switched to …

Trends you should watch, from the Marks Group P.C.

December 2, 2013

By Galynn Nordstrom “Successful people think ahead,” says Gene Marks, president of sales and marketing consultant company The Marks Group P. C. Speaking on political, economic and tech trends at IFAI Specialty Fabrics Expo 2013 in Orlando, Fla., he emphasized three basic things that should be on every business person’s mind. First—watch C-SPAN (Cable-Satellite Public …

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The face of a neighborhood

December 1, 2013

The West Broadway Business and Area Coalition in Minneapolis, Minn., wants to bring new businesses and customers to live, work and play in the evolving inner-city neighborhood and on its major street. The FLOW Northside Arts Crawl, sponsored by the Coalition, displays work by more than 350 local artists during a fun-packed summer weekend each …

Port support

A New Zealand company worked across continents to provide world-class tent shelters for America’s Cup racing teams. By Jake Kulju We’ve all heard about the stunning come-from-behind victory at the 2013 America’s Cup. Oracle Team USA’s victory drew national attention and was hailed by many as the most exciting America’s Cup victory in the event’s …

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Quality shedding: year-round farmer’s market

The Central New York Regional Market Authority (CNYRMA) in Syracuse, N.Y., has a diverse and thriving farmer’s market that’s a year-round destination: the Regional Market Commons is “a safe and trusted community landmark, providing economic, social and nutritional value to the area.” When CNYRMA sought a new multipurpose facility to house additional vendors, challenging conditions …

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The Souk Okaz

Tensile membrane design recalls rich cultural history. Located in the Mecca Province, on the slopes of the Sarawat Mountains in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, lies the city of Taif. With fresh mountain air and beautiful scenery, the city of 500,000 is a popular getaway from the intense heat in the region. For hundreds of …

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Cargo nets help airline, reduce fuel, emissions

While flights that are full with passengers or freight reflect a successful and sustainable customer base, flights that are heavyweight pose problems. More weight equals more fuel used by the aircraft; more fuel consumed in flight equals more CO2 emissions. Anything an airline can do to reduce weight will save money and reduce greenhouse gases. …

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Advancing small business growth

SBA lending activity in FY 2013 tops $29 billion. The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) has announced its third highest year of SBA lending to date, surpassed only by two record years of supporting more than $30 billion in FY 2011 and 2012. In FY 2013, SBA supported more than $29 billion in lending to …

All the energy fit to print…

Trials began in September by the Victorian Organic Solar Cell Consortium (VICOSC) in Australia to develop flexible, large area, cost-effective printable plastic solar cells. The trial aims to speed manufacturing of organic solar cells “printed” onto polymer in much the same way as money is printed on paper. The potential to mass-produce solar cells cheaply …

Dave Clarke’s good business

Dave Clarke’s vision for The Industrial Fabrics Association International starts with strengthening its market-specific groups–known as Divisions. By Sigrid Tornquist “Generating new revenue streams without losing focus on your mission is a challenge for any organization but it can be done,” says Dave Clarke, incoming chair of the Industrial Fabrics Association International (IFAI) and global …

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Refugee shelter canopy cools, insulates and connects

Shelters in refugee camps, mostly tents, usually deteriorate within six months, battered by sun, wind and rain. Refugees often stay in camps for years. Swedish home products manufacturing giant IKEA and the United Nations (UN) Refugee Agency and Refugee Housing Unit joined forces in 2008 to build a better home for people already struggling with …

Interview with David Clarke of IFAI

Interview by Sigrid Tornquist What role do you see Divisions playing in the association? IFAI began as a tent and awning association, but it’s grown to be a diverse group made up of both small and large companies in a variety of market segments. It’s absolutely critical that Divisions drive the value of this association. …

Globe Canvas to merge with D.C. Humphrys

During the 2013 Specialty Fabrics Expo, agreements were signed to merge the assets and personnel of Globe Canvas Products Co., Yeadon, Pa., into Philadelphia-based D.C. Humphrys Co. According to Globe Canvas Products’ president Kevin Kelly, IFM, MFC, CPP: “Globe will continue as an operating division of Humphrys. Settlement of this transaction is expected to occur …

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Performance driven

Sports and recreation fabrics for apparel and gear match demanding customer expectations and show continued growth. Whether participating in an ultramarathon or exploring the arctic poles, serious athletes need the same thing in their apparel and gear: comfort and protection. Fabric technologies are delivering above and beyond these goals, helping to serve the extreme-sport mentality …

Coast-to-coast growth for Sunair

In 2010, Sunair Awnings and Solar Screens, Baltimore, Md., established a west coast presence by purchasing a 24,000-square-foot plant in Phoenix, Ariz. The company’s growth continues with the recent purchase of a 21,000-square-foot addition to its current plant at the Maryland location. The expansion will enable Sunair to meet demand created by the addition of …

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Load bearing

Manufacturers of fabric-based products find great potential in handling and transporting cargo, as fibers and fabrics become lighter and stronger. The vast majority of products sold must make their way from the place where they are manufactured to the place where they will be used. That simple truth equates to an ocean of opportunities for …

Castle Building to sell Norseman buildings

Castle Building Centres across Western Canada will now sell Norseman Structures building packages, following a partnership agreement completed in September. Norseman Structures manufactures fabric buildings and enclosure systems for the agriculture market. The clearspan design, natural light interior, fast delivery and installation and reduced maintenance requirements make steel framed, fabric-covered buildings a popular choice in …

High-impact digital graphics

DPF 390 is a wide-width digitally printable flexible substrate designed to take heavy amounts of ink, single or double-sided, ensuring color consistency day and night, without incurring additional material stretch. Heavyweight, seamless white translucent media can be used for back-illuminated signage and awnings; the material lights up brightly and uniformly whether used in a fluorescent …

Mutoh’s ValueJet printers win SGIA award

The Specialty Graphic Imaging Association (SGIA) product of the year award went to the ValueJet 1638 64-inch wide-format printer, made by Mutoh America Inc., Tokyo, Japan. This is the second year the Mutoh ValueJet line has walked away with honors in the Test Print Shoot Out Poster Size, Solvent or Latex Ink category, announced this …

Bursting strength tester

The SDL Atlas PnuBurst determines the bursting strength and distension at burst of woven, knitted and nonwoven fabrics, paper and paperboard. With a wide range of test clamp sizes and pressures, it is extremely versatile in use, capable of meeting all major bursting standards that do not require hydraulic testers. Intuitive software includes a correction …

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Pushing competitive, ‘green’ textile plants in India

India’s Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs recently launched a new Integrated Processing Development Scheme (IPDS) to establish environmental infrastructure and energy efficiency at textile processing units. The IPDS initiative, with funding of 5 billion rupees, will upgrade common effluent treatment plants, renewable power generation, storm water management infrastructure, pipelines for water and wastewater and testing/research …

Tape welding machine

New Variant T1 Tape automatic welder is designed for welding reinforcement and anti-vandalism tapes in truck tarps and tie-down straps. Options include: easily accessible lift-up device for simple moving and positioning of the machine, tape de-reeler, guide rollers, precision-designed nozzles and an optional laser guide. Machine enables a high level of productivity with a maximum …

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Narrow fabrics North American market report

The Narrow Fabrics Institute, a division of IFAI, has published its commissioned report “Overview of the Narrow Fabrics North American Market.” The 34-page report provides an overview of the current North American rigid and elastic narrow fabrics market; coverage includes the United States, Canada and Mexico. In addition, the report provides information on the overall …

Cutting room technology

The new Paragon® cutting platform from Gerber Technology produces high-quality cut parts regardless of material, application or operator, allowing manufacturers to produce more parts in less time for a higher return on investment. The system’s new user interface, KERI™, is simple enough for any operator to use efficiently and accurately from the start. Modular design …

Pinto joins Scovill board

Scovill Fasteners of Clarkesville, Ga., has appointed James I. Pinto to Scovill’s board of directors. The company manufactures high-performance fasteners for apparel and industrial applications, and Pinto has held operational and supply-chain roles in aerospace and industrial businesses, including Textron Lycoming, Greenlee Textron, Textron Fluid and Power and Tyco Intl. He earned a Six Sigma …

WeatherMax FR linen line

Keyston Bros., a carrier of WeatherMax fabrics from Safety Components Fabric Technologies, has designed a one-of-a-kind linen line of WeatherMax FR fabric, available in slate, sandstone, oyster, chocolate and black, with terra-cotta to come. The new line, to offer more options to the commercial awning market, has a textured finish, adding a richness to the …

Phifer Inc. hires two new designers

Phifer Inc. of Tuscaloosa, Ala., designs and manufactures textiles, and has enlisted two talented designers to enhance its products. Raymond Neuse combines 18 years of experience in the textile industry with 20 years as a freelance artist, using his expertise to design indoor/outdoor textiles, home décor, novelty and flooring. He holds a B.F.A. degree in …

Aurora, the greenpeace polar bear

A polar bear the size of a double-decker bus “walked” through London September 13, accompanied by about 3,000 people in support of Greenpeace’s Save the Arctic campaign. “Aurora” perambulated with the help of 15 puppeteers and 30 more volunteers to operate the mechanics of the giant beast. It carried the names of 3 million additional …

Health care: ACA, on the way

Is this the way to do health insurance? Stay tuned. By Marc Hequet Kevin Yonce has gone to a lot of work trying to figure it out. He may still be uncertain—and you may know the feeling. The chief executive at TCT&A Industries, an awning maker and tent renter in Urbana, Ill. (and the immediate …

New leadership team at Diamond Brand

Diamond Brand, Arden, N.C., had a good year in 2013, following a large order for tents by the Boy Scouts of America with a multi-million dollar deal to supply the Soldier Crew Tent for the U.S. Army. The company has hired P. Steve Floyd as the vice president of operations for the manufacturing division. Floyd …

A plug-in pavilion, with a twist

Volvo Car Italia sought a mind-bending way to display the new Volvo V60 Hybrid Electric Diesel at its Rome launch event in September 2013. The company held a design competition, “Switch to Pure Volvo,” and the winner was a collaborative effort from Synthesis Design + Architecture, Los Angeles, Calif.; engineering firm Buro Happold, Los Angeles; …

Technical support at Global Imaging

Global Imaging of Louisville, Colo., has recently added to its technical support team, appointing David Dawson as technical services manager and Leslie Herrmann as workflow studio production and application specialist. Dawson will oversee customer support and strategic training to ensure professional installation and trouble-shooting. He has experience as a technical support and customer service manager …

Knitting together Chile’s past and future

On the remote grasslands of the Chilean Andes plateau, Aymara herders have eked out an existence by selling fibers from their llamas and alpacas—until harsh conditions and low pay sent many to cities to find more promising work. Jorge and Isabel del Carpio launched Innovation Against Poverty to help preserve the Aymara and their ancestral …

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Creating the future of textiles: make it from milk

Qmilch IP GmbH makes a silky smooth, all-natural fabric from milk that’s highly desirable for high fashion, but well suited for more industrial applications, too. A lot of milk in the world is simply thrown away as unsuitable—for food, that is. German-based company Qmilch IP GmbH has found a use for discarded milk: fabric. In …