J R Crompton* (Bury) appear to have been the first speciality papermaker to report interesting results from their first trials with short-cut Tencel. Brian Tomkinson, the Technical Manager, evaluated 5mm 1.7 dtex as a direct replacement for viscose in tea-bags and as a direct replacement for abaca (manila hemp). He also evaluated 12-15mm 1.7 dtex as a replacement for polyester in medical papers.
Tencel disintegrated too easily in the abaca beating process and gave an unusably high Schopper Riegler value and a very highly swollen "gel" in a 5 minute treatment. It clearly disintegrated much more easily than the abaca fibre and they would need to optimise the beating process to make it usable.
They were keen to follow up the polyester replacement, and we noted the need to study the beating properties of Tencel back in Research.
*Now Glatfelter UK