ASTM D4974 - 04(2011)

    Standard Test Method for Hot Air Thermal Shrinkage of Yarn and Cord Using a Thermal Shrinkage Oven

    Active Standard ASTM D4974 | Developed by Subcommittee: D13.19

    Book of Standards Volume: 07.02


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    Significance and Use

    This test method may be used for the acceptance testing of commercial shipments of yarns and cords. Caution is advised because yarn and cord may contract in length over a period of time due to room temperature retraction. Thermal shrinkage values are reduced proportionately by the amount of room temperature retraction.

    Note 1—Experience, especially with nylon, shows that yarn retraction, which may be observed directly as shortening of length (or indirectly as denier increase), will occur in unrestrained yarn or cord that is not at equilibrium (equilibrium in this case being defined as essentially zero thermal shrinkage yarn or fully relaxed yarn). Normally, retractive forces are present in most wound packages of yarn and cord; thus, unrestrained yarn near the surface is likely, with time, to undergo some retraction. After retraction, such yarns exhibit lower thermal shrinkage values than yarn or cord deeper within the package. The opposite condition of yarn on the surface exists with yarn or cord wound against or near a rigid package core, such as a metal or hardwood wind-up spool. Such core yarn or cord cannot move against this restraint, and thus, will exhibit thermal shrinkage values even several weeks later near to those which were measured immediately from the surface of the freshly wound package. Elevated humidity will accelerate retraction of unrestrained yarn, but moisture content in itself will have little influence on thermal shrinkage. Exposure of untensioned skeins of yarn or cord to 95 to 100 % relative humidity at room temperature for two days and reconditioning under standard laboratory conditions will cause most of the room temperature retraction that is possible within a sample to occur.

    In case of differences of practical significance in reported test results from two or more laboratories conduct comparative tests to determine if there is a statistical bias between them. Competent statistical assistance is recommended for the investigation of bias. As a minimum, the parties should take a group of test specimens that are as homogeneous as possible and that are from a lot of material of the type in question. The test specimens then should be assigned randomly in equal numbers to each laboratory for testing. The average results from the two laboratories should be compared using Student's t-test for unpaired data and a probability level chosen by the parties before the testing is begun. If a bias is found, either its cause must be found and corrected, or future test results must be adjusted in consideration of the known bias.

    Thermal shrinkage of nylon, polyester, and other fibers is related to the polymer of origin and its manipulation in processing. Thermal shrinkage measurement can be used to control product uniformity.

    The level of thermal shrinkage is critical in the user's subsequent operations. For example it can affect the drumset (original length of cord) required in tire building to produce a finished, final tire of a particular size.

    Thermal shrinkage is critical to final shape and size of fiber reinforced articles. For example, thermal shrinkage affects final size of V-belts and their ability to maintain tension while running.

    This test method is similar to the procedures of Methods D885 for the determination of thermal shrinkage of yarns and cords. Shrinkage is measured while the specimen is within an oven and tensioned as specified in Methods D885;D885 however, there are enough vagaries among different units of apparatus for measurement of thermal shrinkage that numerical equivalence between units of different design should not be assumed, even under the same nominal conditions.

    1. Scope

    1.1 This test method covers the measurement of shrinkage of yarns and cords when exposed in a thermal shrinkage oven.

    1.2 This test method is applicable to yarns and cords made of nylon, polyester, and other polymers not detrimentally affected by the temperature used and with linear densities in the range from 20 to 700 tex (180 to 6300 denier).

    1.2.1 Yarns or cords for testing may be taken from yarn or cord packages or from fabrics.

    1.3 This test method shows values in both SI and inch-pound units. SI is the technically correct name for the system of units known as the International System of Units. Inch-pound units is the technically correct name for the customary units used in the United States. The values stated in either acceptable metric units or other units shall be regarded separately as standard. The values expressed in each system may not be exact equivalents; therefore, each system must be used independently of each other, without combining values in any way. Referee decisions are to use SI units.

    1.4 This standard does not purport to address all of the safety concerns, if any, associated with its use. It is the responsibility of the user of this standard to establish appropriate safety and health practices and determine the applicability of regulatory limitations prior to use. Specific hazard statements are given in Section 8.


    2. Referenced Documents (purchase separately) The documents listed below are referenced within the subject standard but are not provided as part of the standard.

    ASTM Standards

    D123 Terminology Relating to Textiles

    D885 Test Methods for Tire Cords, Tire Cord Fabrics, and Industrial Filament Yarns Made from Manufactured Organic-Base Fibers

    D1776 Practice for Conditioning and Testing Textiles

    D6477 Terminology Relating to Tire Cord, Bead Wire, Hose Reinforcing Wire, and Fabrics


    ICS Code

    ICS Number Code 59.080.20 (Yarns); 59.080.50 (Ropes)

    UNSPSC Code

    UNSPSC Code 11151700(Yarns); 41114716(Textile shrinkage tester)


    DOI: 10.1520/D4974-04R11

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