is probably Australia's best known producer of cotton and polyester canvas. In our bid to use Australian products in Peak Oil designs, we head out to Rutherford to meet Jim and learn more about the products and processes at WaxCon.
Jim is a lovely man who gave us well over an hour of his time to hear about some of our goals, and show us his products. WaxCon handles very large scale production including Defence contracts, so we really appreciate his generosity in considering the very small scale work we might bring him.
We were particularly interested in 2 of his products: Fortress
(a 100% cotton with a dry waterproof treatment that leaves the fabric looking like oilskin, but without the oiliness); and Avanti 2000, or Dri Pel
(a tight woven cotton that if scortched would be identical to the UK product Ventile
, and a heck of a lot less expensive).
We learned that 500m are the minimum orders for these two fabrics, and we can order any colour we want in that. WaxCon can do printing too. Printing is off photographic roles of 75cm circumference printing area. There is a setup fee of $650 per colour and a minimum of 1000m.
We were a little disappointed to learn that while the weaving of the heavier canvas products is done in the WaxCon factory, the base cotton of these finer fabrics is done off shore. Wax Con is mostly set up for colouring, coating and treating the fabrics we're interested in. So now we want to find out if there is a factory weaving high grade cotton in Australia, and see if Wax Con will take it and treat it. Wax Con has a lab too, so some day maybe we'll ask them to trial the treatment of hemp and linen.
Jim gave us enough metres of Fortress and Avanti to use in our sample making.. So we're heading back to see Julio to tweak the pattern and make samples with this fabric.