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Monday, September 29, 2008



The following defect grading standards and specifications are to be used and adhered to as closely as possible, when grading all fabrics consigned to vendors producing apparel for adidas-Salomon. It is realized that there will be occasions when the conditions are not adequately covered by these instructions. In such cases, the fabric should be held and the relevant LO Quality Manager contacted, for further advice.

marketing apparel products, which use woven and knit fabrications. These include woven synthetic and synthetic blends; 100% cotton, CVC, CVS and synthetic warp and circular knits. It is recognized that some fabrications have fewer defects than others due to the nature of the yarn, the behavior of the fiber and the type of spinning or the type of weave/loom/knitting machine used. For the purpose of grading, fabrics have been grouped into two classifications as follows, although the majority of the current fabrics will be found in group 1, listed below.

The performance of our material suppliers will be reviewed from time to time but the goal of our suppliers should always be to ship materials and products that are defect-free.


All fabrics shipped to apparel suppliers should meet the following criteria based on the 4 point system. Note that the expected standard is the maximum points allowed per individual roll and the maximum average per shipment. Our expectation is that the quality of the fabrics shipped, should be better than this.

Group 1
Group 2

All 100% synthetic and synthetic blends
Twills and sateens
Cotton & cotton blends

(Ring/Ring), (Ring/OE)
(Ring/Ring), (Ring/OE), (OE/OE)

All knitted fabrics
Warp and circular knits
Square weaves
Linen, cotton & linen/cotton blends

(Ring/Ring), (Ring/OE), (OE/OE)
Expected Standard

Individual roll
(maximum allowed)
15 points per 100 linear yards.
25 points per 100 linear yards.
Shipment (average)
(maximum allowed)
12 points per 100 linear yards.
20 points per 100 linear yards.



The Four-point system will be used to determine the lot acceptance of fabrics for . This numeric grading system is endorsed by the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM), The American Apparel Manufacturers Association (AAMA) and the European Clothing Manufacturing Association (ECMA).

A) Demerit points shall be assigned as follows (Defects in any direction):

1 point - Defects of size exceeding 0 inches but not exceeding 3 inches (7.5cm)
2 points - Defects of size exceeding 3 inches (7.5cm) but not exceeding 6 inches (15cm)
3 points - Defects of size exceeding 6 inches (15cm) but not exceeding 9 inches (22.5cm)
4 points - Defects of size exceeding 9 inches (22.5cm)
B) No yard shall be penalized more than 4 points.

C) All holes regardless of size, shall be penalized 4 points. There must be two or more yarns broken at the same place, for the defect to be considered a hole.

D) No piece shall be accepted as first quality where the usable width (which is the width between the insides of the selvages or between the stenter pinholes) is less than the minimum usable width stated on the purchase agreement. Unless otherwise stated, the fabric width specified on the material specification sheet is for minimum fabric width, measured inside the selvages.

E) No piece shall be accepted as first quality that exhibits a noticeable degree of shading from side-to-side or side-to-center.

F) No piece shall be accepted as first quality exhibiting a noticeable degree of shading end-to-end, when checked by laying panels, cut from the beginning of the roll, across the opposite end.

G) Fabric bowing or bias should be within the following tolerances.

i) Yarn-dyed in checker pattern: No piece shall be accepted as first quality exhibiting more than 1.5 inches (3.8 cm) of bow or bias on 60 inch (152cm) goods.

ii) Printed in checker or stripe pattern: No piece shall be accepted as first quality exhibiting more than 1.2 inches (3cm) of bow or bias on 60 inch (152cm) goods.

iii) Single jersey knitted fabrics within 5%. Note that fabric should be within 5% skew after washing.

H) No piece shall be accepted as first quality exhibiting a noticeable degree of looseness (waviness) or tightness along either or both selvages, nor ripple or puckers within the body of the fabric, which would prevent the fabric from lying flat when spreading in a conventional manner.

J) Any defect found to repeat and or run in a continuous manner will constitute a running defect.

i) Any piece having a running or repeating defect through more than three (3) continuous yards shall be rejected regardless of the point count.

ii) More than one occurrence, in excess of three (3) yards, in an audit can cause the dyelot to be rejected.


K) If the total number of second quality yardage is 20% of the total inspection quantity, the dyelot fails inspection pending adidas-Salomon’s instructions, as to the disposition of the shipment. The following types of defects are included:

a) Bowed or bias in excess of stated tolerances.
b) Dye streaks or unevenness.
c) High point count.
d) Hand-feel too stiff or soft compared with standard.
e) Loose, wavy or tight selvages.
f) Narrow width.
g) Shading side-to-side or side-to-center.
h) Shaded end-to-end.
i) Any combination of the above.

Note that for defects such as bowing or bias, incorrect hand-feel, narrow width, and side-to-side/side-to-center/end-to-end shading no penalty points shall be assigned. However, the entire roll shall be graded as second quality and should be rejected.

At the discretion of adidas-Salomon or their appointed garment supplier, the fabric supplier may be required to re-evaluate the entire shipment, remove and/or re-evaluate defective rolls, and re-offer the shipment for re-inspection.

L) Individual pieces and dyelots shall be rejected if their point levels exceed those of the classified groups, listed below, based on 100 linear yards:

Fabric Classification
Individual roll
(max. points per 100 lin yds)
(max. points per 100 lin.yds)
Group 1
15 points
12 points
Group 2
25 points
20 points

M) If the actual fabric length of a piece is significantly more or less than the length recorded on the piece
ticket, penalty points will not be assigned for the roll length variation. However, the discrepancy will be
recorded on the fabric inspection report.

N) All bulk dye lots should be consistent with the adidas color standard and approved lab dip. Please refer to the adidas-Salomon color manual for detailed information.

O) If there is more than one dye lot for any color, in a fabric shipment, the mill is responsible for ensuring that
the color consistency between dye lots is within an acceptable range, compared with the first bulk approved
colour swatch and adidas-Salomon color standard.

P) For denim, a certain amount of skew is required to be added to the fabric in the finishing process. Please check with the respective LO Quality Manager to determine how to measure the fabric skew.

Q) All rolls of fabrics should be within +/-5% of the given weight specification, measured according to Determination of Fabric Weight g/m2 ISO3801/ASTM3776 (adidas modified) method. (Refer to section 4.19 Apparel Materials Test Procedures & Requirements Manual).



The ability to sample sufficient rolls of fabric will depend on the type of facilities and equipment that the fabric and apparel suppliers have available. However, it is recommended that the following sampling procedures be used:

By Material Supplier

A) Any Shipment lot - 100% inspection

By Apparel Supplier

A) Shipment of 1,000 yards or less - 100% inspection
B) Shipment of 1,001 yards or more - 10% inspection (minimum 1000 yards)


Please refer to ASTM D3990-99 Standard Terminology Relating to Fabric Defects for an explanation of different types of defects found in knit and woven fabrics.


With the introduction of Lean practices at all adidas-Salomon suppliers, it is important that a Right-First-Time approach is indoctrinated at each level of the production process. The expectation of the apparel supplier is that all materials reaching them have zero or minimal defects. Unfortunately, material manufacturers are currently not achieving such a level of excellence, so the apparel supplier still needs to inspect and replace defective parts before submitting cut panels to the sewing line.

All in-coming materials to the apparel supplier must be inspected, unless they have sufficient confidence in the ability of their material suppliers to mark or tag defects or to produce quality fabrications. It is also recommended that apparel suppliers set up a process of panel inspection to replace any defective parts, before the cut panels are sent to the sewing section.


This section is written to provide a general guideline on the fabric inspection procedure, so that fabric mills and garment suppliers can conduct the inspection process in a similar way.

In our quest for the continuous improvement of garment quality, we believe that the inspection of the piece goods and the subsequent improvement of fabric quality are important steps in the continuous improvement process.

It is recognized that there are several piece goods inspection systems, but in order for our garment suppliers to communicate any problems to our fabric suppliers, it is important that a common procedure be used. For this reason, adidas-Salomon has chosen to use the 4-point system, as the common system.

This procedure will allow our suppliers to evaluate the conformity of production fabric and/or approval samples against adidas-Salomon minimum requirements, through the visual inspection of fabric rolls, randomly selected from a shipment lot.

· ASTM D3990-99 Standard Terminology Relating to Fabric Defects
· Approved first bulk fabric swatch(es) for each color and adidas-Salomon color standard
· Color continuity card (showing previous dye lots, refer to Appendix 2 for example of form)
· Packing list from mill
· Blank inspection report form
· adidas-Salomon fabric inspection procedures.



· All fabrics are to be inspected on an inspection machine. The inspection machine should have a variable speed motor and a mechanical counter for measuring roll lengths. During the inspection, the inspector must stand at an appropriate distance from the machine to ensure the best viewing position to observe both fabric color shading and mill defects.

· The frame should be tilted so that the fabric passes at an angle of between 45 and 60 degrees to the horizontal. The frame is to be illuminated with a minimum of two F96 CWF (Cool white fluorescent) bulbs, positioned parallel to each other and perpendicular to the direction the fabric is moving.

· The fabric should be inspected at a speed that is compatible with the inspector’s ability and the type of fabric being audited. The appropriate inspection speed should be determined by the inspector, but should never exceed twenty-five (25) yards per minute.

· All material suppliers are required to provide a suitable and safe area for conducting fabric inspection. This area should be separate from the fabric finishing department and equipment. The mill should also provide appropriate personnel to load and unload the inspection machine, whenever adidas-Salomon QC or appointed garment suppliers are conducting an inspection.

This procedure is for a fabric inspection conducted by the apparel supplier or a third party at the mill. The apparel supplier for incoming shipments can also use most of the steps. A physical inspection will generally cover the following procedures.

a) Record the inspected roll details (piece length/piece number/dye lot number) on the inspection form.
b) At the beginning and end of each roll, a 6-inch wide full width sample should be cut, as a color reference and used to assess side-to-side, side-to-center, end-to-end and roll-to-roll shading.
c) Check the fabric weight (refer to section 4.19 Apparel Materials Test Procedures & Requirements Manual).
d) The fabric width should be checked a minimum of three times during the inspection of a roll (at the beginning, middle and end). The definition of cuttable fabric width is the measurement excluding the fabric selvages or the fabric outside the tenter pin marks, the unprinted, uncoated or otherwise untreated surface portion of the fabric.
e) Record the fabric length (by mechanical counter).
f) During inspection, the location of the defects should either be flagged, with a plastic barb at the selvage, or marked with a defect sticker. Whether to flag defects and how to flag defects should be discussed and agreed upon between material supplier and garment maker. For example, some delicate fabrics should not have defects tagged with barbs as it can cause more damage to fabric in shipping and handling.
g) Record the point count and type of weaving or finishing defects on the inspection form.
h) Calculate the total penalty points per 100 linear yards, by individual roll.
i) Calculate the average penalty points per 100 linear yards for the entire shipment.
j) Complete the inspection report and determine acceptance/rejection of the shipment or whether it is necessary to hold.
k) Review the results and any defective samples with the supplier.
l) If the supplier agrees the result, they need to confirm by signing the inspection report.
m) If the shipment is rejected or placed on hold, some defective samples should be immediately brought back to the office, to review with appropriate parties.
n) Bulk sample swatches from each dye lot should be attached to a color continuity card (appendix 2).



Achieving the correct color and achieving consistency of color between dye lots are key to the success of adidas-Salomon, especially for any teamsport and coordinated products.

In order to evaluate color consistently between the different material and apparel suppliers’ procedures for color/shade approval by visual viewing and by spectrophotometer, and for maintaining color continuity cards, need to be in place.

All suppliers need to be certified for color approval. This involves a third party, Datcolor, performing a Color Accreditation, which includes assessment of a supplier’s equipment, practices and employees that work with color.

Color procedures and information regarding the color accreditation process can be obtained from the Regional Materials/FAD team or the LO Quality team.


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