The textural effect which results from the flocking process can be created in a variety of ways. Different techniques are selected based on the surface or object to be flocked.
Flock fibers are applied to adhesive coated surfaces either mechanically, electrostatically or by a combination of both techniques. Mechanical flocking can be further divided into pneumatic and ‘beater-bar’ methods.
Flock can be random or precision cut providing different pile effects. Common materials used to manufacture flock include: Cotton, Rayon, Acrylic, Nylon, Polyester.
The feel of flocked surface is closely related to the size of the fiber and the cutting method. Random cut flock gives a short pile while precision cut flock allows for the pile depth to be specified.
The Flocking Process
A wide range of flocking machinery exists for a variety of applications, however the process fundamentally remains the same.
Step 1 – Pre-treatment of the substrate (where necessary)
Step 2 – Adhesive application
Step 3 – Flock application
Step 4 – Preliminary cleaning (removal of excess flock by suction)
Step 5 – Drying/curing of adhesive
Step 6 – Final cleaning (removal of excess flock by suction, brushing and/or beating)