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Why is the dryer bad for denim?

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
I've had a pair of 501 STF's that I've been wearing since last xmas. They are coming along slowly as I have to wear business attire during the work week so they just don't get worn as much as I'd like. Additionally, I went TTT rather than sized down so they are looser than I'd like. I should've gone with the recs here rather than the Levi store salesperson.

I did an initial soak and they've been washed twice (at about 5 & 8 months). I always hang dry but keep wondering why the dryer is so bad. I understand that repeated washing will result in less contrast but how can the dryer on low affect the denim negatively? I figure the dryer will shrink them up a bit after weeks of stretching from wear. Snugger fit should help with developing combs and whiskers, right? Additionally, with a dryer sheet, it'll even help with the smell. What am I missing about the dryer?
post #2 of 16
Possibly uneven shrinking, may not receive even heat if they get "stuck" in one position. Do you ever get clothes out of the dryer with a big hot or damp spot?

It's harder to monitor shrinking and stop it since they'll retain heat.

Jeans may overshrink vs. wearing them as they dry (or at least for a time while damp).

When you wash, do you use hot water? Add boiling water from the stove to really get it hot? That may get the extra shrink you want.

That said, they're just jeans. You can start slow with a short, low temp dryer cycle and see how it goes.
post #3 of 16

Dryers damage the fibers of cotton because they are suppose to have some level of humidity to them. It causes breakage and eventually worn out look. 

 

To shrink jeans best way is to boil them in hot water for 30 mins then throw them into the washer on the heaviest cycle on hot water. It will shrink by one size or more. 

 

Remember to turn them inside out so at least the thing isn't knocking it around and you will need to remove any patch work as they will shrink as well. 

post #4 of 16
Thread Starter 
Thanks guys, appreciate the input.
post #5 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by thewatcher101 View Post

Dryers damage the fibers of cotton because they are suppose to have some level of humidity to them. It causes breakage and eventually worn out look. 

 

To shrink jeans best way is to boil them in hot water for 30 mins then throw them into the washer on the heaviest cycle on hot water. It will shrink by one size or more. 

 

Remember to turn them inside out so at least the thing isn't knocking it around and you will need to remove any patch work as they will shrink as well. 


No, you should absolutely never do what this person is saying.
You should never boil your jeans in water. Also, boiling them then soaking them in hot water is redundant and overkill, especially if you don't allow them to fully dry between the soaks.
Edited by kiya - 9/16/11 at 8:54pm
post #6 of 16
Kiya is right. The only circumstances where you would need to boil denim is if you find them somewhere under some bridge.

B6YBx.png
post #7 of 16
oh my god i just watched that. i died at the blood vomit scene sooooo funny
post #8 of 16
Thread Starter 
Kiya, can you comment on the reason to avoid the dryer...or can I use the dryer sparingly?
post #9 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by patrick_b View Post

Kiya, can you comment on the reason to avoid the dryer...or can I use the dryer sparingly?

All the dryer will do is shrink the jeans more than normal. If the denim yards are rope dyed with indigo you also risk the chance of the dryer leaving stripes or marks on the jean, this can happen even if you flip them inside out.
post #10 of 16
I have a few pair of nice denimz - but still like the old faithful 501STFs as well.

I have always had the best results w/ TTS waist and plus 3 length
I get 'em - throw 'em in a hot wash and then hot dryer until dry.
Always gives me the fit I am looking for after they stretch back out to my dimensions.

your results may vary.

blasphemy of all blasphemies, I also did this to a pair of unsanforized sugar cane 2009s w/ similar results.

be aware............they WILL hella-shrink in length w/ dryer.

Dunno how subsequent washes will affect, have not washed any of my 501s again yet.

As for faydz.......dunno......didn't expect great fades w/ the OTR 501s to begin with.


namaste
post #11 of 16
According to the Tech dept at Cone, you should not use a dryer because it leaches out the last of the resins (sometimes wax) with which the warp yarns are sized, and takes some indigo with it. Personally, I find they also make the denim too soft, and with that kind of fluffy feel they seem to attract dirt quicker, too.

You're fine with a hot wash; I've done 95 degrees celsius, which didn't lose any indigo, and took well over two inches off a 34 waist.
post #12 of 16
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Astronaut888 View Post

I have a few pair of nice denimz - but still like the old faithful 501STFs as well.

I have always had the best results w/ TTS waist and plus 3 length
I get 'em - throw 'em in a hot wash and then hot dryer until dry.
Always gives me the fit I am looking for after they stretch back out to my dimensions...

That's pretty much what I did but I soaked in warm water instead of washing them when new. The length shrunk perfectly but the waist is still a bit loose.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Astronaut888 View Post


As for faydz.......dunno......didn't expect great fades w/ the OTR 501s to begin with...

Well said...that may be my biggest problem. I'm very likely expecting too much out of them. As you said, they are $45 501's after all. We're not talking high end Japanese denim.

Thanks for the reality check.
post #13 of 16
^
Dude, for $45 bucks, the 501s will still look pretty good with some hard wear. If that's what you are comfortable paying for jeans, rock 'em! Just wash them when they smell or get dirty, and air dry. I've seen awesome fades on men shopping for supplies at the hardware store. They would probably consider $45 WAY too much for jeans.
post #14 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by S-Town View Post

^
Dude, for $45 bucks, the 501s will still look pretty good with some hard wear. If that's what you are comfortable paying for jeans, rock 'em! Just wash them when they smell or get dirty, and air dry. I've seen awesome fades on men shopping for supplies at the hardware store. They would probably consider $45 WAY too much for jeans.

Sufu should a thread dedicated to contractor fades pr0n.
post #15 of 16
i throw mine in the dryer so they shrink, i got a pair of new cures and im going to get them hemmed. how much should i hem so that when i wash them they dont shrink too much?
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