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How to Measure the Abrasion Resistance

As we can see, some new clothes are susceptible to being damaged even though they are just worn several times. However, there are also some garments that remain intact for a long time regardless of the color fading. Obviously, it is the quality that causes the difference. But do you know what kind of fabric performance is connected to this occurrence? In fact, it is referred to as fabric abrasion resistance.

What is fabric abrasion resistance?

Fabric abrasion refers to a phenomenon that the fabric gradually wears out and breaks as a result of frequent friction between the material and other substances. And abrasion resistance can be defined as the ability of textiles to resist abrasion when the fabric is subject to repetitive mechanical friction. Besides, it is of great importance to measure the abrasion resistance. Testing the fabric abrasion resistance can improve the efficiency of textile utilization as it is a key indicator of textile product quality. Before there was an abrasion tester available on the market, most people judged the quality of friction-related products according to their experience. And the abrasion tester can directly quantify this sensation, making it possible to manufacture products in mass production.

the abrasion resistance

Test methods for determining the abrasion resistance

Martindale abrasion test method

Martindale abrasion resistance test method is frequently employed for the evaluation of abrasion resistance and pilling performance of textiles. GB/T3903.16-2008 Test Methods for Uppers, Linings, and Insocks-Abrasion Resistance stipulates the test method for testing uppers by applying the Martindale method, which is also applicable to the abrasion resistance test of automotive leather.

In accordance with the Martindale abrasion method, the specimen is rubbed with standard friction fabric under consistent pressure. The relative motion between the rubbing fabric and the specimen is carried out by the Lissajous pattern, creating friction in all directions. The degree of damage to the specimen is evaluated after completing the rubbing in the required number.

In the test, a piece of polyurethane foam with a thickness of 3±1 and a density of 30±3 kg/m3 is padded flat on the back of the specimen. Then the specimen is fixed to the grinding head with a clamp ring while the table felt is placed on the grinding table. And the fabric for friction will be put on the table felt. Next, put the heavy item which can generate 2±0.2 kPa pressure on the specimen and make it fixed. More importantly, install the grinding head on the abrasion tester and apply 12±0.2 kPa pressure on it. Once the aforementioned steps are complete, start the instrument and operate it according to the number of rotary times set by the counter. When the test is completed, take the specimen out of the machine, and check and record the degree of abrasion of the specimen. And evaluate the color change in the test area according to GB/T 250-2008 Textile-test for color fastness: Grey scale for assessing change in color by applying the grey scale.

Martindale abrasion test method

STROLL abrasion test method
According to ASTM D 3886-1999 Standard test method for abrasion resistance of textile fabrics, the STROLL method applies the principle that the test specimen is placed on an inflated rubber diaphragm with constant air pressure and rubbed against the specimen using sandpaper with specified surface characteristics. After rubbing the specimen at the designated times, the degree of wear of the specimen is evaluated by its appearance.

Test procedure

Put the specimen on the rubber diaphragm in a flat state and the abrasive paper on the abrasive plate with the contact head attached to the abrasive paper flush with the surface of the paper. Then apply 28 kPa of air pressure below the diaphragm and 454 g pressure above the abrasive plate and make sure that the control of air pressure and the contact between the inflated sample and the loaded sandpaper is in a stable and balanced condition. Then start the instrument and perform the test in the number of rotations set by the counter. After the test, remove the sample, check and record the wear degree of the sample and use the grey scale card to evaluate the color change in the test area according to GB/T 250-2008 Textile -Test for color fastness-Grey scale for assessing change in color.

Universal Wear Tester

Taber abrasion test method

Test procedure

1 It is necessary to assemble the grinding wheel (also known as the abrasive wheel )required for the specimen material prior to the test according to the relevant test standards for the test material. (Remark: the tester will prepare additional fine sandpaper)

2 Cut the standard specimen, and then to be attached it to the back of the test piece with double-sided tape (the other side should also be attached, too). Then weigh the specimen and record it.

3 Before starting the test, we need to confirm the power supply voltage to be in accordance with the specified standard.

4 Before the test, lift the test arm and then start the power supply to try to run the abrasion machine. By doing so, we can check whether the machine is running in the normal way by lifting the test arm and vacuum arm, removing the fixing nut and spacer (ring) of a specimen, and using a wrench to loosen the fixing screw of the fixing ring and picking up the fixing ring.

5 Cut the prepared fine sandpaper into the model of the specimen in advance, then just put the center hole on the screw and cover the spacer. Next, use a screw nut to fix the fine sandpaper on the disc.

6 After finishing the above steps, you need to put on the fixing clip, flatten the sandpaper, and then lock the fixing ring and screw nut with a wrench.

7 According to the test standard choose the corresponding grinding wheel and fixed it (the test standard should be based on the actual requirements of the product). It is required to loosen and remove the fixed screw nut of the grinding wheels, and then install the grinding wheel and tighten and fixed it.

Tabewear tester
8 According to the test standard, the corresponding weight can be placed in the counterweight that needs to be used (for example, placing the weight of 500 grams). (Equipment weight loads of 250G, 500G, and 1000G are available.)

9 In the test, we can set the number of test revolutions to 50 times (according to different test needs to set their own test revolutions, here it is just taking 50 times as a small example). After that, put down the test arm and vacuum arm, turn on the power and vacuum cleaner to adjust the air volume, and turn on the motor switch to start running.

10 After the sandpaper has been polished 50 times, turn off the power and then remove the sandpaper according to the opposite steps 4,5, 6, and 7, and put it on the test according to steps 4, 5, 6, and 7.

11 Set the number of test revolutions to 1000 times, stick the sand layer on the wheel with plastic cloth, and check whether the double-sided adhesive of the specimen is firm. Put the paper sticker on the test disc, then repeat step 10.

12 When the machine reaches the set number of tests, it will automatically stop working.

13 After stopping the machine, the operator can use a small brush to remove the sand layer on the surface of the leather. You need to remove the specimen with double-sided tape. Then weigh it with precision scales and record it. Finally, calculate the test value according to the formula.

Taber Abrasion Tester

Our TESTEX, one of the most advanced manufacturers of abrasion testers, provides Tabwear testers with high quality and reasonable prices. There are various abrasion resistance testers available for sale. If you are interested in these machines, feel free to contact us.

Common test standards for the abrasion test

There are various methods for testing the abrasion resistance of textile products, such as the flat grinding method, curved grinding method, folded edge grinding method, and compound grinding method. The Martindale method is one of the flat grinding methods and is widely used for abrasion resistance testing of garments, home textiles, decorative fabrics, and furniture fabrics. And the following are common standards applying the Martindale method used in the Taber abrasion test.

Chinese standards
GB/T 21196.2-2007 Textiles-Determination of abrasion resistance of fabrics by the Martindale method Part 2: Determination of specimen breakdown
GB/T 21196.3-2007 Textiles-Determination of abrasion resistance of fabrics by the Martindale method Part 3: Determination of mass loss
GB/T 21196.4-2007 Textiles-Determination of abrasion resistance of fabrics by the Martindale method Part 4: Assessment of appearance change

International standards
ISO12947.2-1998 Textiles-Determination of abrasion resistance of fabrics by the Martindale method Part 2: Determination of specimen breakdown
ISO12947.3-1998 “Determination of abrasion resistance of textiles by Martindale (Martindale) method Part 3: Determination of mass loss
ISO12947-4-1998 Textiles-Determination of abrasion resistance of fabrics by the Martindale method Part 3: Determination of mass loss

American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) standards
ASTMD4966-2010 Standard test method for abrasion resistance of textile fabrics(Martindale abrasion tester method)

The main factors affecting the abrasion resistance of fabrics

When fabrics are used on different occasions, they will be certainly subject to different external factors, such as mechanical, physical, chemical, and other effects, which gradually reduce their use value as it is damaged.

1 The properties and geometric shape of the fiber
In the same conditions of spinning, the longer the fiber is, the larger the holding force of the inter-fiber. It is not easy to pull the fiber out from the yarn when under friction, which improves the abrasion resistance of the fabric. The moderate fiber fineness is also conducive to developing the wear resistance, generally kept in 2.78~3.33 dtex.
And generally speaking, flexural abrasion resistance and folding edge abrasion resistance fabric with profiled fiber are generally worse than the fabric with round fiber. The mechanical property of the fiber is also a decisive factor affecting the abrasion resistance of the fabric. The abrasion resistance of the fabric with high fiber elongation at break and elastic recovery rate is generally better.

various fibers

2 Diverse characteristics of yarns
When the yarn has a higher level twist and the fiber stress is too large, the fiber fragment will be weak in mobility, making the yarn body rigid. Besides, when experiencing friction, it is not easy to compress the contact area, causing the partial pressure to increase. Thus, the yarn suffers from partial pressure prematurely, which is not conducive to the development of the abrasion resistance of the fabric. When the twist is too small and the yarn body is loose, the fibers will be easily drawn out from the yarn, which will also damage the abrasion resistance of the fabric.

3 Fabric geometric structure
Since the fabric is thick, its resistance to flat abrasion will be good. On the contrary, resistance to flexural abrasion and folded edge abrasion will be kept in excellent condition. When the warp and weft density is low, the plain fabric with short floats is more abrasion-resistant. And when the warp and weft density is high, the satin fabric with long floats is more wear-resistant. The weight per square meter of the fabric is the most significant factor in abrasion and resistance. The flat abrasion resistance of the fabric becomes better almost linearly with the increase of the weight per unit area, and there is only a difference in the degree of the abrasion resistance of various fabrics. The fabrics with low density and lots of hair feathers will have great abrasion resistance.

4 Environmental conditions
There are plenty of environmental factors putting a large impact on the abrasion resistance of the fabric, such as the temperature and humidity of the environment, the direction of friction, etc. And the fabric in the use process often is affected by many factors, such as the sun, sweat, detergent, etc. Therefore, the impact brought by the environment on the fabric abrasion resistance is more complex. When performing the test, we should pay attention to the environmental condition.

5 Fabric finishes
The abrasion resistance will be different due to diverse frictions after the cotton and viscose undergo the hot melt resin finishing. When the pressure is very large and the friction is extremely intense, the abrasion resistance of the fabric is obviously reduced, which is mainly because the elongation performance of the fiber becomes worse after finishing. On the contrary, when the pressure is small and the friction is very gentle, the fabric abrasion resistance will increase after finishing.

fabric finishes

6 Material
Fabric abrasion resistance depends on the material made up of the fabric. And the materials can be rated in the following order according to the degree of their abrasion resistance: nylon > polypropylene > vinylon > ethylene > polyester > acrylic > chlorine > wool > silk > cotton > hemp > polynosicrayon> copper ammonia fiber > viscose fiber > acrylate fiber > glass fiber


1 The instrument must be placed on stable ground before use.
2 It is not allowed to remove the machine when in use.
3 Choose the appropriate power supply voltage which should not be too high to avoid burning the device.
4 The machine must be in a working environment with good ventilation when operating.
5 Due to the large operating load, please add lubricant to mechanical parts in a timely manner.
6 After each test, clean the machine and keep it clean.
7 Control box part must be wiped with a dry cloth instead of a piece of wet cloth.


1 If the power indicator is on and the counter is not displayed, there is some trouble with the counter. In other words, the counter should be replaced.

2 If the power is not displayed, it will be either off or the power indicator damaged. At this time, you need to simply swap out the indicator. If the power output terminal is not producing any electricity, please verify the power cord or energized socket.

3 When the test has been carried out for the times set by the counter, the motor still keeps working, indicating that the counter is damaged or that the number of times set by the counter has not been recorded for not pressing the reset button.

4 If the power is turned on and the power indicator is also indicated but the machine does not work even though the start button is pressed, please check whether the relay has dropped or disconnected. If the relay has not dropped or connected, indicating that the relay has been damaged. It should be replaced in time.

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