Upholstery Fabric / Upholstery Fabrics

Upholstery fabrics from KOTHEA offer the very best Martindale / rub test values for contract and residential usage. KOTHEA never compromise on elegance in design throughout their extensive range of collections that encompass many textured upholstery fabrics and hard wearing fabrics such as mohair velvet and faux leather. Much more information can be found about our products and company elsewhere here in The Fabric Blog.

Try searching for particular technical characteristics like ‘Martindale’ or ‘ the specific type of product like ‘Mohair’ or ‘upholstery fabric’ or ‘textured upholstery’ .

Alternatively ask a question by commenting on this page and it will be answered.

Press Release | Interiors | Fabrics | KOTHEA | Aug2009

KOTHEA Release New Fabric For Interiors

LONDON, England. 03-AUGUST-2009 11.30 AM: KOTHEA today announced it has expanded its extensive curtain fabric collection by the addition of KOOMEGA DUPION. KOOMEGA DUPION is a highly unusual contract fabric – on the face of it a superb silk for contract curtain usage with washability and both daylight colour fastness and UV resistance. Yet these are not characteristics not usually associated with silk. 28 colours make it a steadfast choice with more than enough colour options for every scheme. The beautiful fabric looks the part of the finest silk, yet it is a silk alternative, attractively priced for high volume contracts and desirable for domestic usages where silk is required in high-light conditions.

KOOMEGADUPION

Reference: 20-001-452

Colour Shown: Pink

Other colourways: 28

Width: 158cm

Repeat: none

Composition: 100% Polyester

Martindale: na

Primary Usage: Curtains, contract & domestic.

Type of fabric: Silk alternative

About KOTHEA.

KOTHEA are a top-market fabric house based in London serving customers throughout all of Europe and The Middle East. Founded in 1999 they have since continued to develop and sell an extensive range of timeless fabrics to the top architects, interior- and yacht-designers for projects ranging from mega-yachts to boutique hotels and from luxury spas to penthouses.

KOTHEA operate on a trade-only basis and their fabrics are available to the public through interior designers and specialist interior design shops such as Gotham, Interiors Bis and Fiona Campbell. KOTHEA also supply beautiful hand-woven linen fabrics and finished goods – throws and table linen.

KOTHEA’s trade customers would perceive their signature fabrics to include several ranges of velvet including the exclusive ‘cashmere silk velvet’, silks, linens, double-width sheers, faux leather and interesting weaves for upholstery often with high Martindale ‘rub tests’ making them highly suited to both contract and residential projects.

Founder and Executive Director, Lisa Parsons started KOTHEA more than 10 years ago after 11 highly successful years with Nobilis Fontan in Chelsea and Donghia in Chelsea Harbour. She says, “At KOTHEA we like to think we bring something a little different to the market. Our difference will be reflected in our customers’ eyes by unusual fabrics that complement our core fabric ranges; all augmented by our excellent levels of customers service, market knowledge and attention to detail.”

# # #

Top Market Fabric Suppliers For Interiors (Leading European, UK Base)

Use this page as a directory of the UK’s leading fabric suppliers.

Abbot and Boyd 020 7351 9985
Altfield 020 7351 5893
Alton Brooke 020 7376 7008
Borderline 020 7823 3567
Brian Yates 01524 35035
Brunswig 020 7351 5797
Bruno Triplet 020 7823 9990
Chase Erwin 020 8875 7441
Colefax 020 7244 7427
Colony Fabrics 020 7351 3232
Donghia 020 7823 3456
Gainsborough Silk 01787 372081
Henry Bertrand 020 7349 1477
Jab 020 7349 9323
Jane Churchill 020 7244 7427
Jrobertscott 020 7376 4705
KOTHEA 0870 285 4768
Kravet 020 7795 0110
Lee Jofa 020 7823 3455
Lelievre 020 7352 4798
Manuel Canovas 020 8877 6400
Nobilis 020 7351 7878
Pierre Frey 0207 376 55 99
Robert Allen 01494 474741
Sacho Hesslein 020 7352 6168
Silk Gallery 020 7351 1790
Turnell and Gigon 020 7259 7280
Watts Westminster 020 7376 4486
Zimmer and Rhode 020 7351 7115
Zoffany 08708 300 350

Many of these fabric companies sell a wide range of products including: chenille, contract fabric, faux / fake leather, mohair velvet, linen velvet, cotton velvet, wool,  hand woven products, natural silk, cashmere and damask for upholstery, curtains and cushions.

Hotel Restaurant :: Contract Fabric Rub Tests

We were asked for suggestions of the level of abrasion resistance for contract fabrics suitable to use in restaurants or hotels.

A Martindale of at least 30,000 would be the minimum specification. The higher the level of expected usage the higher the specification required.

Sheer Fabrics & The Rub Test

KOTHEA was recently asked “Do sheer fabrics have a double rub test?”

The Martindale rub test (covered extensively, elsewhere on this site) is an abrasion test. Essentially is mimics sofas being sat on a lot.

Any fabric can be put through the test procedure.

Sheer fabrics are used for curtains and blinds.

So the answer is “No”. Only because sheer fabrics are not used on sofas.

For sheer fabrics or for contract curtains then the most important test is for flame retardancy/flammability.

Textile Performance Guidelines (USA Only)

ACT is the acronym for Association for Contract Textiles, which is a not-for-profit trade organization made up primarily of the companies that supply textiles to the contract interior design industry.

The ACT Textile Performance Guidelines

In order to make textile specification easier, ACT member companies adopted a body of popular tests that measure important performance criteria for textiles in the contract interior textiles market. The results of these specific tests are represented by graphic symbols, which are used on ACT-member company textile sampling to indicate that a specific textile performs to contract standards for its recommended application.

The Guidelines are a selection of the numerous tests for textile performance that have been established (and are periodically reviewed) by standards organizations, such as ASTM (American Society for Testing and Materials: www.astm.org) and AATCC (American Association of Textile Chemists and Colorists: www.aatcc.org).

ACT has developed the following voluntary Performance Guidelines to make textile specification easier. The 5 symbols give architects, designers, and end-users a vast amount of performance information in a succinct visual way. Look for these symbols on INSTYLE CONTRACT TEXTILE sampling to assure that the textiles you specify perform to contract standards and pass all applicable testing.

These categories describe a textile’s performance features as measured by specified methods under standard laboratory conditions.’


Flammability

The measurement of a fabric’s performance when it is exposed to specific sources of ignition.
Note: ACT guidelines specify different flammability tests dictated by the intended end use for the fabric.

ACT Guidelines
Upholstery
California Technical Bulletin #117 Section E – Class 1 (Pass)

Direct Glue Wallcoverings
ASTM E 84-03 (Adhered Mounting Method) – Class A or Class 1

Wrapped Panels and Upholstered Walls
ASTM E 84-03 (Unadhered Mounting Method) – Class A or Class 1

Drapery
NFPA 701-89 (Small Scale)* – Pass* NFPA 701-99 Test #1 is being phased in at this time, but is not yet cited in all relevant codes. Therefore, the small-scale test remains the ACT standard until further notice.

TEST METHODS
California Technical Bulletin #117
Section E* – Class 1 (Pass)

The California TB #117 Section E is a test method of the California Bureau of Home Furnishings and Thermal Insulation. It is a vertical flame test measuring the ease of ignition and the burning rate when a small open flame hits the surface of the test fabric for 1 second. A Class 1 (Pass) rating is assigned if:

1. A 5.0 inch section of the fabric is consumed in 3.5 or more seconds (less than 3.5 seconds is a failure). For raised surface fabric, the minimum burn time is increased to 4.0 seconds.

2. An average char length of less than 6.5 inches or an individual specimen over 7.5 inches.

* For complete technical details about California Bulletin #117 Section E:
http://www.bhfti.ca.gov/techbulletin/117.pdf

ASTM E 84-03* Tunnel Test
The ASTM E-84 test is a test method of the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM). Commonly called the Tunnel Test, this test can be performed under two different methods adhered or non adhered where the only difference is in specimen preparation:

Adhered: The fabric is bonded to either a CA board substitute or gypsum board. This is the prescribed method for wall coverings whose actual use will be adhered .

Non adhered: If the fabric is a panel fabric or upholstered walls, it is tested in a frame without being bonded to any other material.

In each instance (adhered and non adhered), the fabric is placed in the ceiling of the test tunnel and subjected at one end to a high intensity flame which spreads over the first 4.5 feet of the 24 foot test specimen.

The distance of flame front progression and total burning time are used to calculate a flame spread index. Smoke monitors are used to calculate a smoke developed value. The flame spread index and smoke developed value are calculated from the results of the test fabric compared to the characteristics of cement board and red oak materials resulting in the indexes.

Typically, the code classes are as follows:
Class A: Flame Spread Index of 25 or less and Smoke Developed value of 450 or less
Class B: Flame Spread Index of 26 to 75 and Smoke Developed value of 450 or less
Class C: Flame Spread Index of 76 to 200 and Smoke Developed value of 450 or less

Caution: The ASTM E 84 test is only valid if the textile or vinyl wall covering is used in a sprinklered occupancy. If not, the Room Corner Test (NFPA 265 for textiles; and NFPA 286 for vinyl) is mandated in many jurisdictions.

* For complete technical details about ASTM E 84-03: http://www.astm.org

NFPA 701-89 (Small Scale)*
The NFPA 701-89 (Small Scale) is a test method of the National Fire Protection Agency. It measures the ignition resistance of a fabric after it is exposed to a flame for 12 seconds. The flame, char length and flaming residue are recorded. The fabric will pass the test if all samples meet the following criteria (if one sample fails the fabric fails):

1) an after flame of less then 2.0 seconds

2) a char length of less then 6.5

3) the specimen does not continue to flame after reaching the floor of the test chamber

Note: NFPA 701-99 Test #1 is being phased in at this time, but is not yet cited in all relevant codes. Therefore, the small-scale test remains the ACT standard until further notice.

* For complete technical details about NFPA 701: http://www.nfpa.org

Revised October 2003


Wet & Dry Crocking

Transfer of dye from the surface of a dyed or printed fabric onto another surface by rubbing.

ACT GUIDELINES
Upholstery

AATCC 8-2001
Dry Crocking, Grade 4 minimum.
Wet Crocking, Grade 3 minimum.

Direct Glue Wallcovering
AATCC 8-2001
Dry Crocking, Grade 3 minimum.
Wet Crocking, Grade 3 minimum.

Wrapped Panels & Upholstered Walls
AATCC 8-2001
Dry Crocking, Grade 3 minimum.
Wet Crocking, Grade 3 minimum.

Drapery
AATCC 8-2001 (Solids)
Dry Crocking, Grade 3 minimum.
Wet Crocking, Grade 3 minimum.

AATCC 16-2001 (Prints)
Dry Crocking, Grade 3 minimum.
Wet Crocking, Grade 3 minimum.

TEST METHODS
AATCC 8-2001*

The AATCC 8-2001 is a test method of the American Association of Textile Chemists and Colorists (AATCC). This method uses a standard white cotton fabric that is rubbed against the surface of the test fabric. To test for wet crocking the standard fabric is wet before rubbing against the test fabric. After rubbing under controlled pressure for a specific number of times the amount of color transferred to the white test squares is compared to an AATCC color chart and a rating is established.

Grade 5 = no color transfer
Grade 1 = high degree of color transfer

* For complete technical details about AATCC 8: http://www.aatcc.org

AATCC 116-2001*
The AATCC 116-2001 is a test method of the American Association of Textile Chemists and Colorists (AATCC). This test is specifically used for printed fabrics that do not lend themselves to the AATCC 8-2001 method. The test fabric is held at the base of a Rotary Vertical Crockmeter and rubbed with a standard cotton white fabric either dry or wet. After rubbing under controlled pressure for a specific number of times the amount of color transferred to the white test squares is compared to an AATCC color chart and a rating is established.

* For complete technical details about AATCC 116: http://www.aatcc.org

Revised October 2003


Colorfastness to Light

A material’s degree of resistance to the fading effect of light.

ACT GUIDELINES
Upholstery

AATCC 16 Option 1 or 3-2003 Grade 4 minimum at 40 hours

Direct Glue Wallcoverings
AATCC 16 Option 1 or 3-2003 Grade 4 minimum at 40 hours

Wrapped Panels and Upholstered Walls
AATCC 16 Option 1 or 3-2003 Grade 4 minimum at 40 hours

Drapery
AATCC 16 Option 1 or 3-2003 Grade 4 minimum at 60 hours

TEST METHOD
AATCC 16 Option 1 or 3 – 2003*

The AATCC 16 Option 1 and 3 are test methods of the American Association of Textile Chemists and Colorists (AATCC). ACT recognizes both methods where the only difference is the light source being used. In AATCC 16 Option 1 a Carbon-Arc lamp is used as the light source and in AATCC 16 Option 3 a Xenon-Arc lamp is used. Under both methods a strip of fabric (part of which is protected by a special paper card) is placed in a fadometer and exposed to 40 hours of accelerated fading units (AFU). After the exposure the difference in color between the exposed and protected parts of the fabric are compared to the AATCC gray scale and the degree of fading is rated.

Grade 5 = no fading
Grade 4 = slight fading
Grade 1 = high degree of fading

* For complete technical details about AATCC 16 Option 1 or 3 – 2003: http://www.aatcc.org

Revised October 2003


Physical Properties

Physical property tests include: Brush Pill, Breaking Strength and Seam Slippage. Pilling is the formation of fuzzy balls of fiber on the surface of a fabric that remain attached to the fabric. Breaking strength is the measurement of stress exerted to pull a fabric apart under tension. Seam Slippage is the movement of yarns in a fabric that occurs when it is pulled apart at a seam.

ACT GUIDELINES
Upholstery

Brush pill
ASTM D3511-02, Class 3 minimum

Breaking strength
ASTM D5034-95 (2001) (Grab Test)
50 lbs. minimum in warp and weft

Seam slippage
ASTM D3597-02-D434-95
25 lbs. minimum in warp and weft

Wrapped Panels and Upholstered Walls
Breaking strength
ASTM D5034-95 (2001) (Grab Test)
35 lbs. minimum in warp and weft

Seam slippage
ASTM D3597-02-D434-95
25 lbs. minimum in warp and weft

Drapery
Seam slippage
ASTM D3597-02-D434-95
for fabrics under 6 oz./sq. yard
15 lbs. minimum in warp and weft

Seam slippage
ASTM D3597-02-D434-95
for fabrics over 6 oz./sq. yard
25 lbs. minimum in warp and weft

TEST METHODS
ASTM D3511-02*

The ASTM D3511-02 is a test method of the American Society of Testing and Materials (ASTM). This test utilizes nylon bristles to rub the surface of the test fabric for a specific amount of time. The number of pill balls are counted and given a 1 – 5 rating.

Class 5 = no pilling
Class 1 = severe pilling

* For complete technical details about ASTM D3511: http://www.astm.org

ASTM D5034-95 (2001) (Grab Test)*
The ASTM D5034-95 (2001) (Grab Test) is a test method of the American Society of Testing and Materials (ASTM). To evaluate, the fabric being tested is put into a machine that grips the fabric with two clamps. One clamp is stationary and the other moves away applying tension until the fabric breaks or ruptures. This test is performed in both the warp and weft directions. The number of pounds required to cause a fabric to break or rupture determines the rating.

* For complete technical details about ASTM D5034-95 (2001) (Grab Test): http://www.astm.org

ASTM D3597-02-D434-95*
The ASTM D3597-02-D434 is a test method of the American Society of Testing and Materials (ASTM). To measure a fabric’s ability to resist seam slippage, a seam is sewn in the test fabric using a standard thread, specific seam allowance and specific number of stitches per inch. The sewn fabric is then clamped at opposing side of the seam. One clamp is moved away from the other applying tension at the sewn seam. This test is performed in both the warp and filling directions. The tension is increased until the seam separates to a specific distance. The number of pounds required to cause separation due to yarn slippage determines the rating.

* For complete technical details about ASTM D3597-02-D434-95: http://www.astm.org

Revised October 2003


Abrasion

The surface wear of a fabric caused by rubbing and contact with another fabric.

ACT GUIDELINES
General Contract Upholstery

ASTM D4157-02 (ACT approved #10 Cotton Duck)
15,000 double rubs Wyzenbeek method

ASTM D4966-98 (12 KPa pressure)
20,000 cycles Martindale method

Heavy Duty
ASTM D4157-02 (ACT approved #10 Cotton Duck)
30,000 double rubs Wyzenbeek method

ASTM D4966-98 (12 KPa pressure)
40,000 cycles Martindale method

End use examples of heavy-duty installations where upholstery fabrics rated at 30,000 double rubs should be appropriate are single shift corporate, hotel rooms/suites, conference rooms and dining area usage.

ACT acknowledges that there are extreme wear situations that may require higher levels of abrasion resistance. End use examples that may require higher than 30,000 double rubs include: 24 hours transportation terminals, 24 hour telemarketing, 24 hour healthcare emergency rooms, 24 hour casino gambling areas, and such public gathering places as theatres, stadiums, lecture halls and fast food restaurants.

It is strongly suggested that double rubs exceeding 100,000 are not meaningful in providing additional value in use. Higher abrasion resistance does not necessarily indicate a significant extension of the service life of the fabric.

The Wyzenbeek and Martindale tests are the two methods commonly used to predict wear-ability. Actual performance is determined by many factors such as fiber content, weaves, finishes, furniture design, maintenance, cleaning, and usage. Durability of an upholstery fabric is a complex interaction (combination) of a number of performance tests that, in addition to abrasion, includes seam slippage, pilling, tensile strength, and usage.

There is no correlation between the Wyzenbeek and Martindale tests so it is not possible to estimate the number of cycles that would be achieved on one test if the results from the other test were known.

TEST METHODS
ASTM D4157-02**

Oscillatory Cylinder (Wyzenbeek)
The ASTM D4157-02 is a test of the American Society of Testing and Materials. A Wyzenbeek machine is used for this test allowing samples of the test fabric to be pulled tight in a frame and held stationary. Individual test specimens cut from the warp and weft direction are then rubbed back and forth using an ACT approved #10 cotton duck fabric* as the abradant. The number of double rub cycles achieved before two yarn breaks occur or noticeable wear is observed is recorded as the fabric s abrasion rating.

** For complete technical details about ASTM D4157-02: http://www.astm.org

* The wire screen abradant is recommended by ACT for use with vinyl and polyurethane coated upholstery and may also be used for testing 100% olefin fabrics.

ASTM D4966-98* Martindale
The ASTM D4966-98 is a test method of the American Society of Testing and Materials (ASTM). This is an oscillating test. Fabric samples are mounted flat and rubbed in a figure eight like motion using a piece of worsted wool cloth as the abradant. The number of cycles that the fabric can endure before fabric shows objectionable change in appearance (yarn breaks, pilling, holes) is counted. Number of cycles determines abrasion rating.

Source: Association for Contract Textiles

Quirky, New Textured Weave Fabric For Contract & Domestic

KOTHEA Release New Fabric For Interiors

LONDON, England. 06-JULY-2009 11.30 AM: KOTHEA today announced it has expanded its extensive upholstery fabric collection by the addition of KOCAFELATTE. KOCAFELATTE is a somewhat quirky and hard wearing fabric with an unusual, fine patterned design. It is a striking fabric with a high Martindale result, achieved whilst maintaining the highest levels of exclusive design. It is well suited for a range of uses but targeted towards upholstery and cushions in either domestic or contract installations.

KOCAFELATTE
Reference: 02-002-415

Colour Shown: Champagne

Other colourways: 3

Width: 135cm

Repeat: V9 – H9cm

Composition: 100% Viscose

Martindale: 40,000 ‘rubs’

Primary Usage: General upholstery or window treatments, contract & domestic.

Type of fabric: Textured Weave

About KOTHEA.

KOTHEA are a top-market fabric house based in London serving customers throughout all of Europe and The Middle East. Founded in 1999 they have since continued to develop and sell an extensive range of timeless fabrics to the top architects, interior- and yacht-designers for projects ranging from mega-yachts to boutique hotels and from luxury spas to penthouses.

KOTHEA operate on a trade-only basis and their fabrics are available to the public through interior designers and specialist interior design shops such as Gotham, Interiors Bis and Fiona Campbell. KOTHEA also supply beautiful hand-woven linen fabrics and finished goods – throws and table linen.

KOTHEA’s trade customers would perceive their signature fabrics to include several ranges of velvet including the exclusive ‘cashmere silk velvet’, silks, linens, double-width sheers, faux leather and interesting weaves for upholstery often with high Martindale ‘rub tests’ making them highly suited to both contract and residential projects.

Founder and Executive Director, Lisa Parsons started KOTHEA more than 10 years ago after 11 highly successful years with Nobilis Fontan in Chelsea and Donghia in Chelsea Harbour. She says, “At KOTHEA we like to think we bring something a little different to the market. Our difference will be reflected in our customers’ eyes by unusual fabrics that complement our core fabric ranges; all augmented by our excellent levels of customers service, market knowledge and attention to detail.”

# # #

For Further Information

Please visit the company web site at https://www.kothea.com

Trademarks

KOTHEA is a registered trade mark of KOTHEA Limited. Other names may be trademarks of their respective owners.

Colourfastness – Testing to US standards

Colorfastness to Light

A material’s degree of resistance to the fading effect of light.

ACT GUIDELINES (USA :: Association for Contract Textiles)

Upholstery
AATCC 16 Option 1 or 3-2003 Grade 4 minimum
at 40 hours

Direct Glue Wallcoverings
AATCC 16 Option 1 or 3-2003 Grade 4 minimum
at 40 hours

Wrapped Panels and Upholstered Walls
AATCC 16 Option 1 or 3-2003 Grade 4 minimum
at 40 hours

Drapery
AATCC 16 Option 1 or 3-2003 Grade 4 minimum
at 60 hours

QuickTime Movies (click link to play)
Colorfastness to light

TEST METHOD
AATCC 16 Option 1 or 3 – 2003*
The AATCC 16 Option 1 and 3 are test methods of the American Association of Textile Chemists and Colorists (AATCC). ACT recognizes both methods where the only difference is the light source being used. In AATCC 16 Option 1 a Carbon-Arc lamp is used as the light source and in AATCC 16 Option 3 a Xenon-Arc lamp is used. Under both methods a strip of fabric (part of which is protected by a special paper card) is placed in a fadometer and exposed to 40 hours of accelerated fading units (AFU). After the exposure the difference in color between the exposed and protected parts of the fabric are compared to the AATCC gray scale and the degree of fading is rated.

Grade 5 = no fading
Grade 4 = slight fading
Grade 1 = high degree of fading

* For complete technical details about AATCC 16 Option 1 or 3 – 2003: http://www.aatcc.org

Source: Association for contract textiles (USA)

Match & Cigarette Tests :: Equivalents in USA

Flammability


The measurement of a fabric’s performance when it is exposed to specific sources of ignition.

Note: Association of Contract Textiles (ACT) guidelines specify different flammability tests dictated by the intended end use for the fabric.

Association of Contract Textiles
Guidelines

Upholstery
California Technical Bulletin #117 Section E –
Class 1 (Pass)

Direct Glue Wallcoverings
ASTM E 84-03 (Adhered Mounting Method) –
Class A or Class 1

Wrapped Panels and Upholstered Walls
ASTM E 84-03 (Unadhered Mounting Method) –
Class A or Class 1

Drapery
NFPA 701-89 (Small Scale)* – Pass*NFPA 701-99 Test #1 is being phased in at this time, but is not yet cited in all relevant codes. Therefore, the small-scale test remains the ACT standard until further notice.

QuickTime Movies (click links to play)NFPA 701-99 (Small Scale) California TB #117 Section E

TEST METHODS
California Technical Bulletin #117
Section E* – Class 1 (Pass)
The California TB #117 Section E is a test method of the California Bureau of Home Furnishings and Thermal Insulation. It is a vertical flame test measuring the ease of ignition and the burning rate when a small open flame hits the surface of the test fabric for 1 second. A Class 1 (Pass) rating is assigned if:

1. A 5.0″ section of the fabric is consumed in 3.5 or more seconds (less than 3.5 seconds is a failure). For raised surface fabric, the minimum burn time is increased to 4.0 seconds.

2. The fabric does not ignite.

* For complete technical details about California Bulletin #117 Section E: http://www.bhfti.ca.gov/techbulletin/117.pdf

ASTM E 84-03* Tunnel Test
The ASTM E-84 test is a test method of the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM). Commonly called the Tunnel Test, this test can be performed under two different methods adhered or non adhered where the only difference is in specimen preparation:

Adhered: The fabric is bonded to either a CA board substitute or gypsum board. This is the prescribed method for wall coverings whose actual use will be adhered .

Non adhered: If the fabric is a panel fabric or upholstered walls, it is tested in a frame without being bonded to any other material.

In each instance (adhered and non adhered), the fabric is placed in the ceiling of the test tunnel and subjected at one end to a high intensity flame which spreads over the first 4.5 feet of the 24 foot test specimen.

The distance of flame front progression and total burning time are used to calculate a flame spread index . Smoke monitors are used to calculate a smoke developed value. The flame spread index and smoke developed value are calculated from the results of the test fabric compared to the characteristics of cement board and red oak materials resulting in the indexes.

Typically, the code classes are as follows:

Class A: Flame Spread Index of 25 or less and Smoke Developed value of 450 or less

Class B: Flame Spread Index of 26 to 75 and Smoke Developed value of 450 or less

Class C: Flame Spread Index of 76 to 200 and Smoke Developed value of 450 or less

Caution: The ASTM E 84 test is only valid if the textile or vinyl wall covering is used in a sprinklered occupancy. If not, the Room Corner Test (NFPA 265 for textiles; and NFPA 286 for vinyl) is mandated in many jurisdictions.

* For complete technical details about ASTM E 84-03: http://www.astm.org

NFPA 701-89 (Small Scale)*
The NFPA 701-89 (Small Scale) is a test method of the National Fire Protection Agency. It measures the ignition resistance of a fabric after it is exposed to a flame for 12 seconds. The flame, char length and flaming residue are recorded. The fabric will pass the test if all samples meet the following criteria (if one sample fails the fabric fails):

1) An after flame of less then 2.0 seconds

2) An average char length of less than 6.5″ or an individual specimen of 7.5″.

3) The specimen does not continue to flame after reaching the floor of the test chamber

Note: NFPA 701-99 Test #1 is being phased in at this time, but is not yet cited in all relevant codes. Therefore, the small-scale test remains the ACT standard until further notice.

* For complete technical details about NFPA 701: http://www.nfpa.org

Revised October 2003:

Source: Association For Contract Textiles