Home >> New International Encyclopedia, Volume 20 >> Wittekind to Yttrium >> Wool Sorting

Wool-Sorting

wool, quality, fleece and qualities

WOOL-SORTING. The differences in the quality of wool, and especially that from different parts of the fleece. render sorting a necessity. In shearing, the fleece from each sheep sticks to gether as a mat, and is tied up separately. In sorting, the different parts of the fleece repre senting separate qualities are torn off by hand. An idea of the location of the various qualities of wool is given by the accompanying diagram of a Leicester lamb's fleece, taken from Bow man's Structure of Wool Fibre. The same rela tive positions hold good in all kinds of fleeces.

The finest and most even growth of wool is found at A, on the shoulders. In some fleeces this quality extends farther up the back (E) and toward the tail (11 and F) than in others, and the quality of the wool at B is not very much inferior, although rather shorter and coarser.

These two qualities would be graded in the wool en trade as picklock and prime or choice, while the wool from the portion indicated by C is fre quently finer but shorter than A or 1) and apt to contain more irregular or colored hairs. When free from these defects C is graded as super in quality. The portions D and E shade into those on each side of them, and as they form the top of the neck and shoulder, the fibre is not as deep or close as at A or C. The portion over

the loin (F) resembles 13, into which it shades, and for many purposes, especially for spinning down, A, 13, E, and F are frequently used to gether as one quality. Back of F, on the flunks, the wool becomes long and coarse, the best being found in the portions marked G. The wool at II and 1 is the coarsest part of the fleece, grow ing in large locks with long coarse hairs. It is often termed 'breach' wool and can only he used for very coarse yarns spinning low numbers. Be yond the extremities of I there is often a still lower quality called 'tail' or 'cow-tail,' which is coarse and hairy and can only be used for the very lowest numbers. The differences in quality of fibre from the same fleece are so great that a large number of sortings can be made, depending upon the character of the fleece and the purposes for which the wool is to be used. The names ap plied to the different qualities of wool vary in different localities. and even among different manufacturers, and this lack of uniform nomen clature is a source of no little confusion.