Solutions of 1,6-hexanediamine and sebacoyl chloride are poured carefully into the same container.  Nylon polymer forms at the interface of the two layers and can be pulled continuously from the solution in the form of a "rope" and wound around a cylinder.


H2N(CH2)6NH2 + ClCO(CH2)8COCl → —[HN(CH2)6NH-CO(CH2)8CO)]n— + nHCl

To Conduct Demonstration:  

  1. Pour 1,6-hexanediamine into a beaker to a depth of about 1/2".
  2. Tilting the beaker, carefully pour a layer of sebacoyl chloride down the side of the beaker (or down a stirring rod) to cover the 1,6-hexanediamine.
  3. Nylon is formed at the interface between the two layers.  Using forceps, pick up the nylon and lift it slowly and smoothly from the beaker.  A continuous "rope" of nylon will form as you pull it away.  Wrap the end of the rope around a cylinder and slowly turn it.
  4. Rinse nylon well with distilled water before touching it.

 Safety and Disposal  

Wear gloves and avoid getting these solutions on your hands.  Rinse the nylon before touching it.


B.Z. Shakhashiri, Chemical Demonstrations1983.