Now it has to be said that I dye a lot, I mean A LOT of fiber. I also maintain a stock of certain colors that I reproduce, so I have a very controlled dye method which does include presoaking for at least 30 min. The reason I'm compelled to do this little experiment is because no matter how careful I am, everyone once in a while a batch will come out a little uneven which makes me crazy. At the same time, there have been a few occasions when I have been in a rush to get an order done for someone and have skipped the presoaking and had the fiber come out just great. Is it a fluke? Can presoaking be a waste of time?
Now I know some of this depends of the fiber, it's quality and type. I've worked with roving where I was presoaking as much to get is really clean to accept the dye as anything else. But today I am working with top quality Merino.
I'm compelled to do this test as today is one of those days that my fiber came out a little uneven even though it was babied through my usual controlled process. Like I said it makes me crazy, so I ran upstairs, grabbed another half a pound and here I go again. This time, no presoaking, just the same two dye baths that I made earlier today.
The experiment is still happening, so I will have to report on the results tomorrow. I'll post a couple pictures so you can judge along with me.