Nylon 6

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Nylon 6 at 200x polarized light


Nylon 6 at 200x transmitted light

Nylon 6 is made by polymerizing Caprolactam under pressure. Nylon 6 was first sold as Perlon L in 1939 by I.G.Farbenindustrie. It was produced during W.W.II for parachutes. Nylon 6 is very similar to Nylon 6,6 except that it has a greater affinity for dyes and has a lower melting point. Its Thermoplastic fibers are strong, tough, elastic and have high gloss. They are extruded through a spinneret with a circular cross section. Nylon monofilaments are used for brushes, surgical sutures, tennis strings, and fishing lines. Nylon 6 is also used for heat-seal films because it has low water vapor transmission rates. Cellular nylon foam is made from nylon 6 for lightweight buoys and flotation products.

See also Nylon fiber.


MFA- Nylon 6.jpg

Synonyms and Related Terms

polycaprolactam; Perlon® [I.G.Farbenindustrie]; Caprolan® [Honeywell]; Kapron; Silon; Dederon; Danamid; Nivion; Enka®; Hydrofil [Honeywell]; Powersilk [BASF]; Dorlon (later called Bayer-Perlon) [Bayer]; Bobingen (later called Hoescht-Perlon) [Hoescht]

Personal Risks

Physical and Chemical Properties

Resistant to alkalis and most organic solvents. Degraded by concentrated acids and phenol. Burns with yellow-orange flame and blue smoke; smells of burnt horn. Fiber is smooth. Cross section is circular. Tenacity = 3.8-8.3 g/denier (dry); 3.5-7.1 (wet); Elongation = 16-50% (dry); 19-55 % (wet); Moisture regain = 3.5-5.0% (dry)

Composition (C6H11NO)n
CAS 25038-54-4
Melting Point 210-217
Density 1.14


Properties of Synthetic Fibers

Sources Checked for Data in Record

  • G.S.Brady, Materials Handbook, McGraw-Hill Book Co., New York, 1971
  • Richard S. Lewis, Hawley's Condensed Chemical Dictionary, Van Nostrand Reinhold, New York, 10th ed., 1993
  • Marjory L. Joseph, Introductory Textile Science, Holt, Rinehart and Winston, Fort Worth, TX, 1986, p. 135.
  • J.Gordon Cook, Handbook of Textile Fibres:II Man-made Fibres, Merrow Publishing Co., Durham, England, 1984, p.261.
  • F. Kidd, Brushmaking Materials, Bristish Brush Manufacturers, London, 1957
  • Meredith Montague, contributed information, 1998