Quantcast

Bottom of soap is crumbly...

SoapMakingForum

Help Support SoapMakingForum:

Stacyspy

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 8, 2015
Messages
522
Reaction score
579
Location
Missouri
I've been working with my 3lb. slab mold lately to practice new techniques. The last 2 batches have cut well about 3/4s of the way through, but when it gets to the bottom, the cut edges crumble badly.
It's a basic lard recipe, with CO, OO and castor, and I've never had this happen. I used different colors and FOs in each batch.
I let it sit 24 hours, covered and insulated.
Anyone have an idea what I may have done?
 

lionprincess00

Supporting Member
Joined
Jul 21, 2014
Messages
1,671
Reaction score
1,124
I think that's usually indicative of lye heavy. If it doesn't zap, then it may be your lye is old...how old is it because that's happened to me with roebic lye when I'm down to the bottom of the barrel.
 

Stacyspy

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 8, 2015
Messages
522
Reaction score
579
Location
Missouri
Crap. I bet the lye was getting old. It was the end of the old batch. It doesn't zap, so I think I'm ok there. I get it in sealed tubs from our local Amish, and I didn't soap for a couple months because of my hand. Thanks :)


I think that's usually indicative of lye heavy. If it doesn't zap, then it may be your lye is old...how old is it because that's happened to me with roebic lye when I'm down to the bottom of the barrel.
 

Obsidian

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 18, 2013
Messages
9,894
Reaction score
7,250
Location
Idaho, USA
It can also happen if you wait too long to cut. My high lard recipes crumble on the bottom if I wait more then 8 hours or so before I cut.
 

Stacyspy

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 8, 2015
Messages
522
Reaction score
579
Location
Missouri
Well, that narrowed it down...lol..could be old lye, cut too early or cut too late :)
I feel an experiment of sorts coming on... today, I'll use new lye and wait the 24 hours. If that doesn't work, the next batch I'll only let sit 8 hours, then if necessary, one where I wait longer than 24.

Thanks for all the help! It's much appreciated.
 

DeeAnna

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 20, 2013
Messages
12,602
Reaction score
17,403
Location
Northeast Iowa, USA
Also, what are you cutting the soap with -- knife or wire cutter? If you are using a knife, the soap may be simply splitting apart due to the wedging action of the blade.
 

Stacyspy

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 8, 2015
Messages
522
Reaction score
579
Location
Missouri
I use a very long, very sharp stainless steel knife. It could be that as well, because Lord knows, I have a hard time cutting a straight line...lol... I've been trying to justify either Bud cutter or an adjustable mold...could be this is the push I need...

Also, what are you cutting the soap with -- knife or wire cutter? If you are using a knife, the soap may be simply splitting apart due to the wedging action of the blade.
 

DeeAnna

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 20, 2013
Messages
12,602
Reaction score
17,403
Location
Northeast Iowa, USA
Since this is a slab, the wedging action of the knife blade could easily be a big part of the problem. If you need to use a knife, try cutting when the soap is as soft as possible and make a slow easy cut. The cut may still end up a little crumbly or rough at the bottom, but it might not be quite so bad.

Another thing to consider is using a "taping knife" that's normally used for drywall finishing. I used one when I was first starting out. Since this kind of "knife" doesn't have a taper, it might work better for you. They come in widths from 3" all the way to 12" and aren't very expensive. You can get one that's wide enough to give you a nice straight cut.

Uh, lessee ... here's an example of a wide one:

image_10154.jpg
 
Top