The objectives of this study are are follows:
To identify the improve technology for Argeli paper production.
To find out the appropriate proportion of Argeli fiber to mix with Lokta fiber to produce Lokta-Argeli mixed paper.
Materials and MethodsConsultations with Experts
During the preliminary stage, the consultation on how to improve the quality of Argeli paper was carried out with paper manufacturers and exporters of Kathmandu. The work was carried out with the inputs from: Hand Made Paper Association, Oriental Colony,Everest Gateway Herbs P. Ltd., Jiri, Natural Paper Craft, Mandikhatar, TibetanHandmade Paper Industry, Kapan, Hand Made Paper P. Ltd., Kalanki, Om Paper Craft,Jorpati and Love Nepali Kagaj Udhyog, Kalopul.
Assessment of the Existing Technology for Argeli Paper Making
Various Argeli paper manufacturers of Kathmandu were visited. The observation wasdone visually and interviews were taken with the proprietors and workers involved in themanufacturing of Argeli paper. The samples of Argeli paper were also collected frommanufacturers. The quality of Argeli papers thus manufactured was also analyzed.
Improvement of Paper Quality
Altogether two varieties of paper production techniques were tested.
Pure Argeli Paper
Pure Argeli paper was produced with necessary improvements as according to theconsultation with paper experts. Argeli paper with different weights-5gm, 10 gm, 20gm,40gm and 60gm were produced adopting Japanese technology, except 5gm paper. The procedure followed during the paper making stages are given in annex- 1.
Mixed Argeli Paper
Mixed variety of Argeli paper; both containing Argeli and Lokta fiber was produced asaccording to the consultation with paper experts. Mixed paper with different weights-10gm, 20gm and 40gm were produced adopting traditional methods. The methodsfollowed during the paper making stage are given in annex- 2.
Results and Discussion
The study revealed that almost all Argeli paper manufacturers adopt Japanese technologyand few follow the traditional methods of paper making.The papers were found to be of less strength, thickness balance not maintained, low inweight than specified, rough surface, moisture absorption high (ink absorption) anddifficult for plate dyeing.Both the varieties of paper produced after adopting the improved technology were foundto improve in quality in terms of strength, thickness balance, maintaining weight, smoothsurface, low moisture absorption and mixed paper were plate dyed.2