Use of Sulphite Cellulose Extract as a Tanning Material Page: 310
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Technologic Papers of the Bureau of Standards
Among the many materials which have been investigated for use in
the tanning of hides, one class has stood out prominently as a fruitful
field for research in view of the cheapness with which production and
distribution may be accomplished as compared with the ordinarily
used vegetable tanning materials. Reference is made to sulphite
cellulose extracts which are prepared from the waste sulphite liquors
discharged from mills engaged in the manufacture of paper pulp.
At the present time these extracts are recognized commercial products
and find a steady use in the filling and extracting operations accom-
panying the manufacture of sole leather after the actual tannage has
been completed. Investigations made by this bureau' showed that
leather filled with sulphite cellulose extract wore equally as well as
leather filled with the ordinary vegetable materials, such as chestnut
wood and quebracho extracts. Samples of these leathers, stored in
the laboratory for six years, show no detrimental effects of aging.
The suitability of sulphite cellulose extracts for use in the filling stages
in sole-leather manufacture being established, it appeared logical to
investigate its suitability for use in the tanning stages.
Its successful application in the tanning processes would be bene-
ficial in many ways. It would provide the tanner with a cheap raw
material which could be substituted, at least in part, for some of the
more expensive materials now used, thereby lowering his production
costs. Its utilization would eliminate waste to the advantage of the
paper pulp producers and also modify the dependence of the tanning
industry on imported tanning materials.
II. PURPOSE OF THE INVESTIGATION
The direct purpose of this investigation was to determine the
suitability of sulphite cellulose extracts for use in the actual tanning
processes by means of practical tanning tests, together with such
chemical and physical studies as would assist in the evalution of the
tanning properties of these materials. It has been generally stated
that sulphite cellulose extracts do not contain true tannins similar
in structure to those contained in the ordinary vegetable tanning
materials. It is not the purpose of this investigation to study the
structure of the materials in these extracts, but rather to determine
their suitability for use as tanning materials. Therefore, it should
be borne in mind that, when the term "tannins" is mentioned in
connection with these extracts, the materials meant are those absorb-
able by hide powder as determined by methods generally employed
in commerce for all vegetable tanning materials. It is fully realized
1 Bureau of Standards Tech. Paper No. 215, Durability of Sole Leather Filled with Sulphite Cellulose
Extract, June 10, 1922.
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Wallace, E. L. & Bowker, Roy Clement. Use of Sulphite Cellulose Extract as a Tanning Material, report, November 1, 1926; Washington D.C.. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc66515/m1/2/: accessed March 30, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.