After a review of the development of extensible papers, a description of the double-roll compacting process and its variables is given. Its principal feature is the venturi section formed in the nip between a rubber and a steel roll, between which the paper web passes in a semi-dry state. On running the rubber roll more slowly than the steel roll, the web will shrink in the machine-direction. Experiments on a pilot machine showed an increase in the compacting effect with increasing nip pressure and speed difference, though with certain limitations. When considering nip width and peripheral speed difference as primary variables, however, linear relationships with the paper properties were found. The nip width will vary with the nip pressure and rubber thickness and hardness.
The mechanism of double-roll compacting is considered to involve tangential forces, which move the rubber towards the back side of the nip, where it contracts, thereby shrinking the web. The structure of the resulting extensible paper was examined by photo micrographs of surface and cross-sections, by measuring the thickness changes on stretching and by load elongation measurements. The fibres appear curved after the compacting operation. This will result in the breaking of bonds when stretching the paper and in an ultimate breaking load lower than for flat kraft. The total rupture energy, however, is considerably higher.
An apparent increase in the rubber roll diameter on increasing nip pressure was observed. This will cause a decrease in the mean speed difference at the nip. At a limited set speed difference, the rubber roll was found to change from being driven to be driving on increasing the nip pressure. In an appendix, the nip width and the slip have been treated theoretically as well as experimentally.