What is Fabric Denier?

While sourcing and stocking fabrics for our durable custom products, there are many aspects we consider – woven vs. non-woven, coated vs. uncoated, textile strength, and more. While there are many units of measurement that can be attributed to textiles and manufacturing of soft sided goods, one of the measurements most often considered is Denier.

Many of the textiles utilized in the mil-spec and durable carrying cases field (especially Cordura) are measured using Denier (notated as “##D”, ## being the calculated Denier). Denier is the linear mass density of fibers per 9000 meters of the fiber, and is actually the measurement of the fibers that make up the textile itself. While it may seem like a strange and specific way to calculate measurement, it’s one rooted in natural reference – a strand of silk is 1 Denier, and a 9000 meter silk strand is 1 gram. In simpler terms, Denier defines fiber thickness and weight (in grams). While the calculation for denier, 1D=1g/9000m, was originally designed to measure natural fibers such as silk and cotton (hence the silk being the basis of the measurement), it’s most often now attributed to synthetic woven fabrics to boast durability, such as nylon and polyester. The higher the Denier, the more durable your textile will be.

In terms of the measurement of high durability textiles, Fieldtex offers up to 1050D Ballistic Nylon, which is the top choice for applications where durability, heavy-duty textile weight, and tear/abrasion resistance are the most important aspects. This is ideal for equipment transport carrying cases, EMS and First Responder Cases (Check out our guest post on High Performance EMS on The Anatomy of A First Responder Kit), and body armor plate carrier vests. We also carry 400D Nylon, 600D Polyester, and 1000D Cordura.