Adding GM the half/GM half water method/soap still pretty soft

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Lindy Lou

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Made the 2 pound batch, curing since June 10th. First time using this method of adding GM, made my bastile recipe with honey, coconut and castor, GM, honey and oat flour. Didn't write down whether I used default water amount(38%) or changed to 33, so not certain on that. I usually use powered GM at trace and discount water just a bit. I wasn't sure, so I used full water amount, because I knew I would be adding the lye in half of the water and GM in other. The full water amount shown I think, was a bit over 10 oz. The scale was tricky when I was measuring out the liquid, it was a bit over on both, so I used 5.08 canned GM and 6.17 oz water to dissolve the lye. It would seem that this is the culprit? Can you still take a discount with this method? TIA :)
 
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Hi Lindy,

This is exactly why I never use the "full" or "default" water amount, or try to "discount" from it ... you have to mess around with so many calculations, and the ratios will differ as you change batch sizes. So a large batch might end up much more liquidy than a small one, for instance. There is also no uniform definition of "full" or "discount."

I strongly recommend that you switch to either lye concentration, or water:lye percentage as a much easier way to calculate your liquids and your lye. They are really two different ways of saying the same thing, so pick whichever one is easier for you to wrap your head around.

A good place to start is a 33% lye concentration, which is the same as a 2:1 water:lye ratio. If you decide that less liquid would be better, try 37% or even 40% lye concentration. If you want more liquid, go down to a 30% lye concentration. A lot will depend on what oils and butters are used in your recipe, and whether you want to do swirls, etc.

I personally love a 40% lye concentration with my high-lard GM soaps, which also contain a bit of coconut, castor, and sometimes honey. But I also masterbatch my lye so it's always room temp, and I let my oils cool down quite a bit, as well. That keeps it from overheating with the honey and GM. Also, it may seem backwards, but soap actually gels at a lower temp with MORE water, not less, so if you want to prevent gel (many GM soapers do), then a higher lye /lower water concentration will be the ticket.

Hope that helps!
 

Lindy Lou

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Hi Lindy,

This is exactly why I never use the "full" or "default" water amount, or try to "discount" from it ... you have to mess around with so many calculations, and the ratios will differ as you change batch sizes. So a large batch might end up much more liquidy than a small one, for instance. There is also no uniform definition of "full" or "discount."

I strongly recommend that you switch to either lye concentration, or water:lye percentage as a much easier way to calculate your liquids and your lye. They are really two different ways of saying the same thing, so pick whichever one is easier for you to wrap your head around.

A good place to start is a 33% lye concentration, which is the same as a 2:1 water:lye ratio. If you decide that less liquid would be better, try 37% or even 40% lye concentration. If you want more liquid, go down to a 30% lye concentration. A lot will depend on what oils and butters are used in your recipe, and whether you want to do swirls, etc.

I personally love a 40% lye concentration with my high-lard GM soaps, which also contain a bit of coconut, castor, and sometimes honey. But I also masterbatch my lye so it's always room temp, and I let my oils cool down quite a bit, as well. That keeps it from overheating with the honey and GM. Also, it may seem backwards, but soap actually gels at a lower temp with MORE water, not less, so if you want to prevent gel (many GM soapers do), then a higher lye /lower water concentration will be the ticket.

Hope that helps!
Thanks so much! I do have a question or two, but will follow up again soon.
 

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