A few blogs ago I directed interested knitters to TechKnitter's blog. There are three links to various topics and this one caught my attention: A burn chart to help identify mystery fibers.
I have a few "mystery fibers". One is several skeins of yarn from a back street Quito, Ecuador trip, and another is carefully wound into balls white wool. Or I assume it's wool.
So, I welcomed a science experiment where I might get some idea as to what I have in my stash.
Here's how I managed to eat up a few hours, and make the house (and my fingers) smell not so Christmasy.
I covered a rack with foil, and assembled some tools. I collected my mystery fibers and a few others that I knew exactly their content. That was very helpful in educating me as to what "Burns Self-Extinguishing" and other terms mean.
I tried cotton first. It was over quickly!
Fingering / 4 ply
196 yards / 50 grams
by Shibui Knits
Fingering / 4 ply
191 yards / 50 grams
The catch is that fiber-blends will - well... not behave like all of the fibers in them. The Merino above didn't want to burn, but I kept lighting it. I was beginning to think it was a blend with nylon, but no, the label says...
My mystery fiber from Ecuador, which I had treated as some sort of synthetic, appears to behave like acrylic.
|Yarn from Quito, Acrylic|
It sputtered and burned and melted into a neat, stinky pile. I determined it Burns, Not Self-Extinguishing, and Melts. I couldn't discern what odor (vinegar, burning meat or tumeric: first of all, I didn't WANT to inhale any of the smoke, so I guess I'm not much of a scientist!) but the remains were definitely Soft Black Irregular Ash. That's the part that scented my fingers. I thought they just smelled 'smokey'.
Worsted / 10 ply
210 yards / 100 grams
|Top left: White Wool|
Bottom: Patons Classic Wool
Christmas is coming! Later, gator!