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Discovering New Facts About Paper

Discovering New Facts About Paper

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Excerpt from Discovering New Facts About Paper: The Story of the Greatest Paper Research Laboratory

Paper makers speak of "engine sizing" and "tub" or "surface sizing." By engine-sized paper, they mean a paper which has been sized in the beater. Tub or surface-sized paper is made on the Fourdrinier machine, the web moving through a bath of glue or starch or a combination of both. Paper makers were never agreed on the subject of sizing, particularly rosin sizing. Alum and rosin are also two important sizing agents. Gither used alone is not very effective, but together they form a compound which waterproofs the fibers and therefore prevents ink from being absorbed and Solving The Size Problem spreading on the writing paper. This subject of sizing has engaged the chemists of the American Writing Paper Company for over ten years. It used to be the practice in most writing-paper mills to use liberal doses of alum whenever the pulp seemed not to be running correctly. Research showed that the practice was to be condemned and that far too much alum is used in indiscriminate ways. During the past three years the American Writing Paper Company has saved $300,000 worth of alum.

Emulsions of rosin and soap are widely used in sizing paper. The best sizing effect is obtained with much free rosin; but emulsions are not easily formed when the free rosin is high. Research conducted in the American Writing Paper Company's laboratory resulted in the development of a process of making a clear rosin size - a solution which will not "settle out" and which has greater sizing power than the ordinary milky emulsions. All the guessing that attended the making of rosin size has disappeared, and an error is corrected by mere inspection. In rosin alone this represents a saving of over $150,000 a year.

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