Wool Carding Process

Wool carding techniques have been used for many years, as a process carried out after analyzing and cleaning the wool.

Wool carding is an essential process in the textile industry, vital for transforming wool into a material ready to be spun and woven.

This process not only improves the quality of the wool but is also fundamental in determining the characteristics of the yarn and the final fabric.

The Wool Carding Process

Before carrying out the wool carding, the material must be analyzed.

In the analysis phase, quality control of the wool is carried out. Then the material is classified according to its quality, which allows the creation of a filter to select the best of each textile fiber for optimal textile making.

Before carding, the wool is separated into batches and then taken to a machine that opens up this material.

Cleaning the Wool

Cleaning the wool is crucial to remove impurities that can negatively affect the quality of the spinning and weaving. Dirt and grease, if not adequately removed, can cause problems during carding and spinning and affect the dyeing and finishing of the fabric.

  • Selection of the Wool: Before washing, a selection is made to separate the inferior quality or excessively dirty wool.
  • Soaking: The wool is immersed in water to soften the dirt and lanolin. This step is essential to loosen impurities before applying detergents.
  • Washing: Warm water and mild detergents specific for wool are used. These detergents are designed to dissolve the lanolin and other impurities without damaging the wool fibers. It is important to avoid abrupt temperature changes, as they can cause the wool to felt.
  • Rinsing: After washing, the wool is rinsed several times to remove all detergent residues and dissolved impurities. Proper rinsing is crucial to ensure that the wool is completely clean.
  • Drying: After rinsing, the wool is carefully dried. The drying must be even and at a controlled temperature to avoid shrinking or damaging the fibers.

Opening of Fibers in Wool Processing

The main objective of fibre opening is to prepare the wool for carding, ensuring that the fibres are detangled and partially aligned. Correct fibre opening is essential for efficient and high-quality carding, which in turn influences the quality of the yarn and the final fabric.

  • Detangling: After drying, the wool may still have tangles and clusters of fibres. The first step in fibre opening is to detangle them. This is done using machines equipped with rollers or drums that gently separate the intertwined fibres.
  • Partial Alignment: Once detangled, the next objective is to align the fibres partially. This is achieved using cylinders or combs in the machines, which comb the fibres in a more uniform direction. This partial alignment is crucial for carding, as it facilitates combing and complete alignment of the fibres in that process.
  • Removal of Remaining Impurities: During fibre opening, additional impurities that were not removed during washing are also eliminated. This includes small dirt particles, plant remains, and possible residues.


Carding is the beginning of its transformation into yarn.

  • Carder: Once the wool has gone through the fibre opening, it is introduced into the carder. This machine is the heart of the carding process and is specifically designed to treat wool fibres efficiently and delicately.
  • Rollers with Fine Teeth: The carder is equipped with rollers covered with fine teeth. These teeth are designed to interact with the wool fibres in a way that combs and aligns them carefully.
  • Rotation at Different Speeds: The rollers of the carder rotate at different speeds. This variation in speed is essential for combing and aligning the fibres. The relative movement of the rollers facilitates the uniform alignment of the fibres in the same direction.
  • Removal of Short Fibers and Residues: During carding, the short fibres and other residues that remain in the wool are removed. This is crucial to ensure the uniformity and quality of the yarn. The longer and more aligned fibres are the ones that are finally used in spinning.

Wick Formation

Wick formation represents a key moment in the processing of wool, being the bridge between carding and spinning. Description of the Wick Formation Process:

  • Exiting the carder: Once the wool has gone through the carding process, it exits the carder in the form of a continuous wick. This wick is the result of the alignment and combing of the fibres carried out in the carding process.
  • Characteristics of the roving: The roving takes the form of a thin, uniform ribbon composed of aligned wool fibres. Its uniformity is crucial to ensure the quality of the yarn to be produced later.
  • Preparation for spinning: The roving is the ideal form of wool to be fed into the spinning machine. Its consistency and uniformity facilitate the spinning process, allowing the fibres to intertwine efficiently to form the yarn.


Carding is a crucial step in the transformation of raw wool into a fine textile product. Through this process, the wool is not only cleaned and prepared but also acquires the necessary characteristics to be transformed into high-quality yarns. Modern technology has perfected this process, but the basic principle behind carding has remained constant over the years, underlining its importance in the textile industry.


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