Dehairing Machine FAQs

If I want my fiber to be dehaired, does it have to be sorted?
No, it does not have to be sorted.  However, a more consistent product will be achieved when fiber is separated according to similar micron ranges and lengths. (This is especially true for alpaca, wool, and llama.)
Color batches should also be separated as well.

Do I need to have 100 lbs. of the same grade and/or color?
No.
A batch of 100 lbs. can consist of several grades and/or colors.

What are my options if my animals don’t produce 100 lbs. of fiber?
We have processed 100-lb. batches of fiber that include different farms, however, these orders must be booked to run consecutively.

How long will the dehairing process take?
The machine dehairs fiber at a rate of 20-35 lbs. per hour depending on the type of fiber being dehaired and the quality of the yield expected by the customer.  Some fiber runs through the machine at a slower speed than others.  Maximum time is estimated at two weeks once the fiber arrives for its scheduled dehairing window.

How does my fiber need to be prepared?
For alpaca and sheep wool

  • It is advisable that fiber be properly skirted (removing coarser guard hairs from the legs, belly, and chest) prior to shipping.
  • Fiber should be separated according to color, grade, and length before shipping.
  • Delays will occur when fiber is received in any other condition.

What kind of preparation is required for dual-coated or triple-coated fiber?
Fiber from dual-coated and triple-coated animals doesn’t require any sorting prior to dehairing.  The machines separators will manage that task.

Does my fiber have to be scoured before it can be dehaired?
Yes.
All fiber passing through the dehairer MUST be scoured first.  Fiber scoured outside of the facility should be scoured at one of our approved facilities.  [Checking with the Project Lead for a listing of approved facilities is advisable].

What are the steps to having fiber dehaired?

  1. Call the Office (208-337-3371) to discuss costs and terms, and provide contact information.
  2. All necessary paperwork will be sent to you by Eliza Williams @ Saco River Dyehouse
  3. Return paperwork with a 50% deposit PRIOR to shipping any fiber
  4. Once your deposit is received, you will be instructed to ship your fiber.
  5. It will be weighed several times:  at intake, after scouring, and after dehairing. Each “drop” will be weighed and recorded.  This information will be provided when your fiber is returned to you.

What information is included in the report that the customer received with their fiber return?
The report will include:

  • Incoming weight(s)
  • Weight after scouring (if that process is performed)
  • Weight of each “end product” – “C” drop, “B” drop, “A” drop, Prime

What can I expect to see when my fiber is returned to me?

  • Fiber is returned bagged and boxed according to the “C” drop “B” drop, “A” drop, and Prime.
  • Each bag will be identified with the owners name, “drop” identification, and weight.
  • Prior to return shipping, an invoice will be sent for final dehairing charges, and return shipping charges.
  • Once payment is received, fiber will be shipped.

What is meant by “Prime”, “A” drop, “B” drop, and “C” drop?

  • “Prime” refers to the final output, or the “cloud”.  This is the finest fiber achieved once dehairing is completed.
  • “A” Drop:  the fiber closest to the Prime once dehairing is completed.  In most cases, this is a very usable resource of fiber.  It tends to be 1 or 2 grades higher than the “prime”.
  • “B” Drop:  the fiber dropped at the location of the second roller.  This “drop” consists mainly of strong guard hair.
  • “C” Drop:  the fiber dropped at the location of the first roller, directly after the beginning of the dehairing process.  This “drop” will commonly contain the debris, 2nd cuts, or anything that is not a fiber.

What kind of payment arrangements are required?

  • An invoice for 50% down payment of estimated charges will be sent
  • When payment is received, you will be notified to ship your fiber to the dehairing facility at Saco River Dyehouse.
  • When all batches are completed, a second invoice will be sent with final charges, including shipping charges to return your fiber, or send it to its next destination
  • NOTE: It is the common practice at Saco River Dyehouse to keep your credit card on file, notifying you of “intent to charge”, and keeping you advised of the amount to be charged.  This will serve to hasten the process of managing your fiber.

Will I receive suggestions as to best uses for my fiber when it is returned?

  • Not as a rule
  • We are, however, open to helping our customers by learning their needs, and are happy to share industry contacts that may be able to assist with your project questions