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An Iron is a small appliance, usually electric, for pressing fabrics by hand. Ironing is the process of smoothing out wrinkles and/or removing moisture by Heat, Pressure and Friction, often with application of moisture or steam. Ironing is done with a gliding or sliding motion
The first known use of metal to "iron" clothes, however, is known to have occurred in China. The electric iron was invented in 1882, by Henry W. Seeley. Seeley patented his "electric flatiron" on June 6, 1882 (U.S. Patent no. 259,054). Ironing is the use of a heated tool (an iron) to remove wrinkles from fabric. The heating is commonly done to a temperature of 180-220C, depending on the fabric Ironing works by loosening the bonds between the long-chain polymer molecules in the fibers of the material. While the molecules are hot, the fibers are straightened by the weight of the iron, and they hold their new shape as they cool. Some fabrics, such as cotton, require the addition of water to loosen the intermolecular bonds. Many modern fabrics (developed in or after the mid-twentieth century) are advertised as needing little or no ironing The iron is the small appliance used to remove wrinkles from fabric. It is also known as a clothes iron, flat iron, or smoothing iron. The piece at the bottom is called a sole plate. Ironing uses heat energy, chemical energy, electrical energy, and mechanical energy Pressing Pressing is the act of exerting pressure and heat, with of without steam, to smooth or crease a fabric. It is distinct from ironing by its limitation to special smoothing operations such as crease and pleat setting or touch up of wrinkled areas of a garment. Involves no sliding of the iron The Charcoal Iron The Charcoal Iron is still seen in India. It is used dhobis and some tailors even in big cities like Bombay and Delhi. Its a metal box with the lid hinged onto the back. Wooden handle is fixed to the top of the lid. When the iron is to be heated the lid is opened and live coal pieces are filled into the box. The lid is then closed and fastened by means of a little hook placed near the front tip of the lid. Drawback The temperature cannot be regulated. It either gets too hot or does not heat up sufficiently. When it 'gets cold the ash has to be emptied out and

The iron has to be filled again with burning charcoal. The coal iron is practically extinct in homes to-day. Electric irons of various weights and makes are the ones in use.

An Electric iron consists of : The Sole Plate This is the base of the iron. Its lower surface is highly polished so that it can glide smoothly over the fabric to be ironed. In many irons there is a coating of Teflon which prevents sticking as well as corrosion.

The Element It is the most important part in an electric iron. A wire made of an alloy of nickel and chromium, nichrome is sandwiched between two sheets of mica. The ends of this wire are attached to the plug pins at the rear end of the iron. The plug pins are connected to the flex which carries a plug which fits into the socket.

The Press Plate The Press Plate covers the element and has the handle attached to it. It adds weight to the iron. Some irons have a sheet of asbestos between the element and the press-plate. This prevents the press plate from getting hot.

The Handle The Handle attached to the press plate is of bakelite. Some handles have a thumb rest.

Thermostat Most electric irons today are thermostatically controlled. This is a very desirable feature which helps regulate the temperature of the iron for ironing various types of flbres.

Temperatures for ironing various fibres Fibres Linen Cotton Wool Silk Nylon Polyester Acrylic Rayon Modacrylic Safe ironing temp 200C 180C 160C 160C 160C 160C 120C 120C No ironing

The Thermostat It is a device made up of a strip of two metals which are affected differently by heat.

When an electric current flows through the strip the two metals respond differently and the strip bends. When the desired temperature is reached the contact with the element is cut off shutting off the flow of current. When it cools the strip bends back making contact and permitting the current to flow

Features Automatic irons also have an indicator lamp which comes on when the current is switched on and which goes off when the set temperature is reached. Heat not weight is more important in the automatic iron. The thermostat has made it possible to have light-weight irons with more heat and safety. Irons have chromium plated surfaces. Household irons vary in weight from 1.8 - 3.6 kg. The wattage used varies from 600 to 1,000 watts. STEAM IRON Steam irons are electric irons having a reservoir into which water is filled. When the current is switched on the water boils and steam is emitted at the ironing surface. A considerable amount of time is saved since clothes need not be previously dampened.

However many heavy cottons and linens require more moisture than can be obtained from a steam iron. Some steam irons also have a device for spraying water on the garment being ironed. Most steam irons are combination irons, that is, they give steam or dry ironing as the user prefers. The iron is fitted with a devise that permits this adjustment.

Steam irons are of two types: Kettle type: The water boils and the steam is let out through perforations in the sole plate. Flash boiler type: which emits steam instantaneously

Selection of Dry and Steam Irons Points to be checked when purchasing an iron:

I. Type of iron 2. Weight 3. Sole plate

: : :

Automatic/non-automatic. Dry/steam. Light weight. Medium weight, heavy weight. Size - neither too large nor too small. Pointed tip. Rounded rear corners. Hard, non- scratch able, non-corrosive, polished surface. Teflon coated.

4. Handle 5. Cord

: :

Comfortable shape/easy to hold. Thumb rest. Comfortably cool during use. Sufficiently long. Well connected to the iron preferably by a swivel type connection. Well connected to the plug.

6. Plug 7. Thermostat 8. Servicing 9. Guarantee

: : : :

Good quality. Unbreakable. (Temperature control dial). Easy to adjust. Fabric markings easy to read. Easily available. Reliable. Reasonable cost Duration. Backed by a reliable manufacturer and a reliable dealer. ISI - mark. Safety features. Safety plug. Danger' of burns when refilling.

10. If steam iron :

Precautions in Ironing and Care of the Iron Before use check to see that the iron, particularly the sole plate, is perfectly clean. If it is dirty it should first be cleaned. After ironing starched clothes, the iron should be cleaned to remove any starch that might have stuck on the sole plate. This can be done with a wet, clean, soft, cloth wrung out in soapy water or vinegar. Do not use strong scouring powders or steel wool. Steel wool may be used in case of stubborn spots. Avoid ironing over zippers, pins, snap-fasteners, and other hard objects to prevent the sole plate from getting scratched. Correct sticking of iron by rubbing wax to the sole plate which is slightly warm. Remove excess wax by ironing on tissue or blotting paper and wiping with a clean cloth. The cord should not rob against the 'ironing table. It should hang from above the board. This position makes ironing easy and also safe for the person using the iron. Rest the iron in a flat position on an 'asbestos pad when not ironing. Preferably remove the plug from the switch board when the iron is not in use. Hold the plug and pull it off, Never tug on the cord. Allow the iron to cool on the asbestos pad.

In the case of steam irons it is preferable to remove the water after ironing and leave open to allow moisture to evaporate. When the iron is put away it should be clean and dry. It is advisable to change the flex periodically since the rubber coating gets brittle and could cause a short circuit. Never fill hard water in a steam iron.

Other equipment that is good to have and which make ironing or pressing easy are : Ironing board or table Sleeve board Press cloth

The ironing board It should be well-padded and smooth. It should be covered with a firm white woven cover stretched firmly and fastened well. It should stand firmly and be of correct height. A height of 75 cm is generally comfortable. It has a piece of asbestos at the right hand side on which the hot iron can be safely placed. Sleeve board It is good to use a sleeve board to facilitate the pressing of sleeves. Thin white muslin cloth is necessary when pressing wool or silk.

Pressing m/c : 1. Collar & cuff pressing m/c 2. Shirt press m/c

3. Coat press m/c 4. Topper m/c 5. Legger m/c 6. Trouser topper COLLAR & CUFF PRESSING M/C 3 SPRING LOADED BUCKS WHICH ARE FIRMLY PADDED CHROME PLATED STEEL HEAD BEARS HEAD IS HEATED UNIFORMLY BY STEAM TECHNICAL DATA Tension V.230-400 50 -60Hz Aspiration motor 450 W Steam pressure Air pressure 5 - 6 Bar 6 - 7 Bar

Steam requirement 5 KG/H

Shirt press m/c

TROUSER TOPPER Trouser pressing is conventionally carried out in two stages, namely pressing of legs and waist band section Topping presses the pleats along the waist, fry and accurately without the pocket impressions. Legging also presses pleat in the pant and shapes the calves to give better finish.