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Textile Merit Badge requirement 2b question

Hello. I wonder if there are anyone doing a Textile Merit Badge Counseling.

The Textile Merit Badge requirement 2a, and 2b states as follows (posted at the end of this question.) I am trying to figure out what it means by “origin” and “the general content of each fiber” in requirement 2b.

Could someone chime in to help me understand the definition of the question please? Thank you very much.

Mika Watanabe
ASM, Troop 402

"2. Do the following:
a. Get swatches of two natural-fiber fabrics (100 percent
cotton, linen, wool, or silk; no blends). Get swatches
of two synthetic-fiber fabrics (nylon, polyester, acrylic,
olefin, or spandex). Get a sample of one cellulosic fabric
(rayon, acetate, or lyocell).
b. Give the origin, major characteristics, and general content of each type of fiber obtained for 2(a). Explain the
difference between a cellulosic manufactured fiber and a
synthetic manufactured fiber.

Do you have the merit badge pamphlet? To me, that is something that is probably covered in the pamphlet.

Yes I have a pamphlet. Pamphlet talks about the origins of some of the fiber, but not all of them. However, that can be probably researched easily by googling the term. What I am wondering more about is the meaning of “general content of each type of fiber.”

For example, if I take the word “content” literally, cotton is 100% cotton, and probably most other natural fibers’ content is 100% of that material. Or does this word, “content” apply only to the kind of fabric, which are made with mixed fiber, etc? This particular question 2b is not clear to me. That is my question.

Thank you.

Mika Watanabe


Mika Watanabe

Yeah, that word “general” does leave it open to interpretation. I think for scouts there are some practical considerations that are fun to consider: does it cut if you clean your knife with it? will it hold or wick water? how heavy is it? will it melt if near a fire? So, I think “general” means focus on the types of material in the fiber and how they that might inform on the textile’'s use … as opposed to actual percentages.

“Origin” means the beginning of the use / manufacture of the particular fiber. For example, the merit badge pamphlet has a section on “Silk’s Origin”, which describes the origin of silk.

“General content of each fiber” I think is another way of saying: what is this fiber made from? I think it means something like (for example):

linen: The fiber for linen comes from the inner stalk of the flax plant.
wool: Hair, an animal fiber that comes from sheep and other animals (camels, alpacas, Angora goats (mohair), Angora rabbits, llamas, etc.)

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