- What is SD? SD stands for Standard Deviation. Standard deviation is a statistic which measures the degree of variation of fibre fineness above and below the average fibre diameter. The higher the SD, the more variable is the fleece sample.
- Everyone who comes on the farm these days is concerned about two items - micron count and crimp. I, myself, have written much about the virtues of skinny fleece and bold crimp, so I began to ponder whether this narrow focus was all that healthy for our industry.
- My goal is to breed alpacas with the fineness of cashmere and the crimp of merino. Fineness is measured in microns and finer fiber has a smaller micron count. As an example, human hair can have a micron count of 40-80+ while most cashmere is in the 15-19 micron range. Alpaca fiber can range from 15 -40 microns—depending on their breeding and age—with younger animals having the finest fiber.
- Much has been written about crimp and the relationship with curvature, frequency and microns, as well as curvature and compression. Many of the comments you hear are fact and fiction. We have heard the crinkle theory, the popcorn theory and various statements like “crinkle provides bulk which is created by the air pockets” (processors have concerns re the lack of bulk in Huacaya fibre – products too heavy) and of course that “crimp frequency is a reliable indicator of fineness”. I will demonstrate quite clearly that well-defined crimp is more consistent in its relationships with crimp frequency, curvature and micron.
- Information on the relationships between micron, curvature, crimp frequency and character.