Brushing is a finishing process that uses brushes or other abrading devices to raise the fibers in fabrics like tricot. Raising a nap produces a fuzzy or downy surface, which is why brushed fabrics have a softer feel. This novelty texture of brushing fabric is a good choice for Class A surfaces, a term that’s used in automotive design to describe high-quality surfaces that fit together. If parts with Class A surfaces become scratched, assemblers may reject them because even shallow grooves can affect part fit and function.
Tricot fabrics that are brushed are easy-to-produce and relatively inexpensive. These reusable packaging materials also offer good elasticity and resist creasing. When tricot fabric is brushed, the material acquires a distinctive look and feel.
The front of the fabric has vertical ribs, but the back has horizontal ribs. This novel appearance is a function of how the manufacturing processes stretches long parallel threads and then loops the adjacent threads around these parallel threads.
Typically, brushed tricot fabrics are made of synthetic fibers such as nylon or polyester. Natural fibers such as cotton can be used, but they’re usually blended with synthetic fibers that impart particular properties. For sewn fabric dunnage, tricot or napped fabrics can be laminated to vinyl for reinforcement. Laminated fabrics can provide greater tensile strength than plain fabric alone, but they tend to act as separate materials and can de-laminate. Coated fabrics made of tricot materials are available.