Silicone Fabric Coatings: “The Invisible Protectors” 1956 Dow Corning Syl-Mer

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‘- Man wearing suit walks out of flower shop carrying a bouquet of flowers, pauses in front of camera to inspect his bouquet, then walks out of frame.

- VS MS man walking up sidewalk carrying a bouquet of flowers, water spills on man from storefront overhang; soaked man throws his bouquet on the ground; MS store owner mouth agape looks shocked; pan down man in suited covered in water and dirt.

- Woman enters living room carrying coffeepot; woman pours her friend a cup of coffee, young boy plays with a ball on the floor and causes his mother to spill coffee on the couch, woman runs out of the room to get cleaning supplies; CU disembodied hand scrubs stain on couch cushion.

- Pan over Dow Corning silicone plant in Midland, Michigan; MS staircase leading through maze of pipes in plane, worker wearing white jumpsuit and hard hat walks up the stairs, text “Syl-Mer For Fabrics Sylflex for Leather” superimposed over shot.

- MS woman in laboratory with various instruments and two spinning wheels… man enters laboratory smoking cigarette, man exhales cigarette into fabric showing air pass through the fabric, man exhales cigarette smoke through fabric a second time.

- CU Sylmer labels on fabric samples.’ Produced by Jam Handy.

Reupload of a previously uploaded film with improved video & sound.

Originally a public domain film from the Library of Congress Prelinger Archives, slightly cropped to remove uneven edges, with the aspect ratio corrected, and one-pass brightness-contrast-color correction & mild video noise reduction applied.
The soundtrack was also processed with volume normalization, noise reduction, clipping reduction, and/or equalization (the resulting sound, though not perfect, is far less noisy than the original).

Wikipedia license:

Silicones are inert, synthetic compounds with a variety of forms and uses…

Silicones are polymers that include silicon together with carbon, hydrogen, oxygen, and sometimes other elements. Some common forms include silicone oil, silicone grease, silicone rubber, silicone resin, and silicone caulk…


Silicone films can be applied to such silica-based substrates as glass to form a covalently bonded hydrophobic coating.

Many fabrics can be coated or impregnated with silicone to form a strong, waterproof composite such as silnylon…

Syl-Mer ad in 1956 Life Magazine:

Dow Corning is a multinational corporation headquartered in Midland, Michigan, USA. Dow Corning specializes in silicone and silicon-based technology, offering more than 7,000 products and services. Dow Corning is an equally-owned joint venture of Dow Chemical and Corning.


Products developed over the years include silicone sealants, adhesives, silicone mold-making rubbers, lubricants, release agents for cookware, sound-absorbing silicone, leather treatment, skin care lotion, preceramic polymers for high temperature applications, liquid silicone drycleaning solvent, High purity silicon wafers for use in semi-conductors and solar panels, as well as silicone waxes.


In 1942, moisture in aircraft engines and the formation of corona discharge from aircraft electrical systems at high altitudes made high-altitude flight all but impossible. Dr. Shailer Bass developed Dow Corning’s first product, a simple silicone grease (Dow Corning #4 Compound) that solved the problem. Dow Corning was formally established in 1943 specifically to explore the potential of silicones…

Breast implant controversy

Throughout the 1980s and 1990s, class-action lawsuits claimed that Dow Corning’s silicone breast implants caused systemic health problems. The claims first centered around breast cancer, and then migrated to a range of autoimmune diseases, including lupus, rheumatoid arthritis and various neurological problems. This led to numerous lawsuits beginning in 1984 and culminating in a 1998 multi-billion dollar class action settlement. As a result, Dow Corning was in bankruptcy protection for nine years, ending in June 2004.

A number of large, independent reviews of the scientific literature, including the U.S. Institute of Medicine, have subsequently found that silicone breast implants do not appear to cause breast cancers or any identifiable systemic disease…

Post time: Apr-28-2018
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