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Thread: I think my Gi is destroying my washing machine...

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    Unhappy I think my Gi is destroying my washing machine...

    Has anyone else had this problem? I think the weight of my gi (especially when it's wet) is really making the washing machine work extra hard. My solution has been to put another gi in in the opposite side (regardless of whether it needs a wash or not) just to balance it out... Has anyone else had such problems with cleaning their gi?

    Conversely, I think my washing machine is destroying my gi as payback. It seems that after every cycle I put it through the gi comes out looking more and more like I dressed a statue with it then pushed it down the side of a mountain.

    Don't get me wrong, the roughed up and frayed look is one I can cope with, but sooner or later I'm gonna have a pile of what used to be a gi.

    Any sugestions? Is dry cleaning my only hope?

    I guess I'm kind of hoping to discover a special Japanese folding method that makes the gi light as a feather... Or not.
    Anthony Ray Ferguson

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    Just run over to your local laundromat. Use one of their machines, take a book, have a cup of coffee while it's getting clean. Takes about 1hour to 1-1/2 hours, but it's not that bad, a chance to read and sip coffee undisturbed by family, phones, dogs, etc...

  3. #3
    Mark Murray Guest

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    Quote Originally Posted by Neil Yamamoto View Post
    Just run over to your local laundromat. Use one of their machines, take a book, have a cup of coffee while it's getting clean. Takes about 1hour to 1-1/2 hours, but it's not that bad, a chance to read and sip coffee undisturbed by family, phones, dogs, etc...
    Well, except for the other weirdos that are going to the local laundromat who want to chat incessantly.

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    Front loading washers are easier on dogi than top loading machines, and can handle heavier-weight loads better.

    Many laudromats have both types, so use the front loader if you go that route. Then, next time you're in the market for a new machine, get a front loader; they also use less water, less detergent, are quieter, etc.

    If you don't want to go to the laudromat, use gentle cycle on your machine, and slow (or no) spin cycle. You'll have a very wet dogi, but it won't get as beat up. Then hang the dogi on a pole to dry rather than putting the water-logged beast in a clothes dryer. (If you live in a humid clime, you can start the drying on a pole, then finish in the dryer.)

    HTH.
    Yours in Budo,
    ---Brian---

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Murray View Post
    Well, except for the other weirdos that are going to the local laundromat who want to chat incessantly.
    That's why you take an ipod or MP3 player and wear headphones. Or even better, wear headphones not plugged into anything and snap and nod your head like you are listening to music That usually keeps people away. At least it does for me on airplanes.

  6. #6
    Samurai Jack Guest

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    I am going to assume youíre not married or able to contact woman who have expertise in this area. Your washing machine isn't new (0-5 years old). Second, you throw your gi in the dryer. Third, this is your first gi, or so.

    Here is my advice, buy an expensive gi and have it dry cleaned. If you can't afford that then consider the following.

    Basically, most gi tops are made of rough coarse cotton, not the good refined cotton that doesn't shrink 2 sizes, puckers, balls up, or most of all wares quickly. In the washer you probably put it on a heavy setting with a coarse power detergent that contains bleach. All these things play havoc on rough cotton. The heavy agitator and water in the machine adds ware and tare on the gi breaking down the cotton on the edges (which are not usually sewn to prevent fraying), on the high ware and tare areas, collar and lapel. The cotton is further broken down by bleach. Chlorine bleach is not a friend of clothing, as it reduces the life of the gi. Modern powder/granules detergents like Tide clean as a mild abrasive again reducing the life of the fabric. If you have an old machine and running an unbalanced load isn't good for older machines. Though it is more likely your machine is getting old and need or repair. High heat drying shrinks the cotton, again weakening the fibers/fabric.

    If any of the above is applicable here is your solution. Ideally, hand- wash the gi gently in a liquid detergent, and hang dry, or very low tumble dry. This is not realistic for many, but for the hard core traditionalist it part of the life-style. The next best thing is to wash the gi with towels or something of equal weight when wet on the delicate setting. The type of detergent is a liquid Woolite, or liquid Tide, etc. On the delicate cycle the agitator doesnít move much and rub against the giís fabric. The cycle is shorter usually, so if you have happy skid mark stains or other stains i.e. blood pre-treat with liquid soap and not bleach, soak, then wash. Extra heavy giís are may need to go through the heavy spin cycle to get the water out of the gi. Once washed, donít use the high heat drying, as it shrinks the cotton, weakening the fibers/fabric. When drying, hang dry or place on the lowest setting like air dry. These methods of drying take longer, but will save the fabric.

    Washing Machines: Front loaders are better then top loaders as there is no agitator. But, remember that bleach and detergents and high heat drying, will also break the cotton fibers. If you can, replace your washer with a new model. New top loading models are cheap and easier on clothes, and are designed to compensate for unbalancing. Front loaders are costly, and are designed to make your clothes last longer.

    Good washing.

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    Here's my top ten dogi care tips:

    1) Don't buy stupidly expensive kit thinking it's going to last you a lifetime - it won't
    2) But make sure what you do buy is as solid as possible
    3) Throw it in the washer with other heavy stuff to balance it out.
    4) Drip dry the first couple of times until it has shrunk, then just tumble dry it as normal
    5) When it wears out, get a new one. (That goes for dogi and washing machines both)
    6) Don't stick a blue gi in the washer with your white one
    7) Don't accidentally leave a pair of red underpants in the washer
    8) Whenever possible, get your mum, girlfriend or wife to do it
    9) Make sure she fetches you a beer while she's at it.
    10) Depending on the state of your relationship, now is a perfect time to work on your kata bunkai

    Cheers,

    Mike
    No-Kan-Do

  8. #8
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    +1 for the front-loader, it's definitely easier on clothes in general. Woolite or some other such non-detergent cleaner is easier on stuff than the normal soap.

    Ultimately though, keikogi are disposable items. You'll eventually have to get a new one.
    Neil Gendzwill
    Saskatoon Kendo Club

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    Thank you everyone for responding with your tips and tricks.

    I shall invest in a front loading washing machine when it becomes financially feasible (A front loader was actually my "Big Super Solution" to this problem... I just couldn't properly justify it past "it's what laundromats have" and "..maaaaybe the weight distribution is less of an issue". Happy to see that so many have suggested it )

    Anyways, thanks again!

    Regards
    Anthony Ray Ferguson

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    Just a passing, last thought: I find the missus scrubs up really well. Not herself, of course, the gi.

    Osu
    Trevor
    Trevor Gilbert
    ("If I had to select one quality, one personal characteristic that I regard as being most highly correlated with success, whatever the field, I would pick the trait of persistence. Determination. The will to endure to the end, to get knocked down seventy times and get up off the floor saying "Here goes number seventy-one" - Richard M. DeVos)

  11. #11
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    You mean you are supposed to wash those things?
    Ed Boyd

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    Practice in a loincloth...
    Ray Baldonade
    Chibana-ha Shorin-ryu

    "Love many, trust few and do wrong to none". Chan Yau-man

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nyuck3X View Post
    Practice in a loincloth...
    loincloth smoincloth.

    Ever see old drawings or statues of the pankration?

    http://www.historical-pankration.com...archiveid=1091

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:U...eWrestlers.jpg
    Last edited by Brian Owens; 31st October 2007 at 07:21.
    Yours in Budo,
    ---Brian---

  14. #14
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    Wink

    Quote Originally Posted by CEB View Post
    You mean you are supposed to wash those things?

    I'm usually wearing it at the time

    Osu
    Trevor
    Trevor Gilbert
    ("If I had to select one quality, one personal characteristic that I regard as being most highly correlated with success, whatever the field, I would pick the trait of persistence. Determination. The will to endure to the end, to get knocked down seventy times and get up off the floor saying "Here goes number seventy-one" - Richard M. DeVos)

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brian Owens View Post
    loincloth smoincloth.

    Ever see old drawings or statues of the pankration?

    http://www.historical-pankration.com...archiveid=1091

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:U...eWrestlers.jpg
    It's getting a little uncomfortable here...
    Ray Baldonade
    Chibana-ha Shorin-ryu

    "Love many, trust few and do wrong to none". Chan Yau-man

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