Can anyone troubleshoot the dots and streaks??

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SwitzyBelle

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I have sucessfully made thirty or so batches of goats milk soap, but my last few are coming out with semi transparent streaks and dots. They appear more often in bars cut from the middle of the mold. There is no change in the appearance of the top surface. The soap's pH values are perfectly good, but aesthetically, I'm not too happy with the soap. In one batch the variation occurred only around the bits of ground oats. If anyone has ideas on what it is or what might prevent it, I would be ever so thankful!! Pics are attached...

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coffeetime

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Do you gel or prevent gel? It actually looks like on of the oils is going to gel but not the others??? Has anything changed relative to temperature? What oils are you using? A new batch of FO?
 

SwitzyBelle

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Thank you both SO much for your responses! I will take a look at the glycerin river pics after I post this, thank you for pointing me to some those. My recipe is 47.5 olive, 21 palm, 25.5 coconut, 3 castor, 3 shea butter.

I was going for non-gelled. I treated it my usual way, not insulated, but covered with a sheet of freezer paper and left to rest at room temperature. This has usually worked for me. I would say the ambient temperature where I cure is within 4 degrees of 70F at all times. The fragrances I'm using have always been trouble-free for me. Something I have recently done different, is to add my melted shea butter at trace. Some of the batches using this method have been unaffected, though.
 

SwitzyBelle

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Those pics sure look like what I'm dealing with!! I am going to study that article and consider how best to proceed. The writer holds TD is culprit. And mentions temps and FO's contributing to it. Still, I do wonder if one of the oils had something to do with it, like you mentioned, Coffeetime.
 

coffeetime

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Just a thought, did you melt and mix your palm? If not, you could be getting more stearic in these batches which could generate more heat. Is your trace happening faster?
 

SwitzyBelle

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No, did not melt and mix it, I measured it in solid form. This bucket of palm was "grainer" than what I have gotten in the past. It seemed fresh, good date on the bucket, and is brand new from Wholesale Supp Plus.

So, would you recommend melting and stick blending before each use or just once per bucket?
 

coffeetime

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Aha! We figured it out. Yes I buy it in 40lb buckets, so I melt the whole thing and stir it, but I also parcel it out into smaller buckets for ease of use. And when I use it, I make sure I dig down vertically, right to the bottom, just in case it has settled. That way I get the same distribution of fatty acids each time.
 

SilverMaple

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I've had the same thing happen when I didn't remelt and stir the Palm. I usually set mine outside on a really hot day to melt it, then stir it periodically when I bring it inside to cool.
 

SwitzyBelle

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Thanks so much for helping me solve my mystery!! I use 8lb buckets so that will be easy to melt. You said 40lb buckets, how in the world do you melt that :)!! If you happen to have time, I have just 2 more questions. Do you just hand stir it? and should I worry if I get grainy looking palm in the future, or is that just normal? Thanks A LOT!:grin:
 

SwitzyBelle

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Thanks for sharing that, Silver Maple. That helps confirm that the palm really is most likely the problem. I'll be mixing and melting from now on :D
 

coffeetime

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I find it does re-form the layers in the smaller bucket, but I just scoop it out vertically (spoon straight in to the bottom) so that I get even amounts of each layer. Seems to work!
 

leniwie

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be careful with lye

I have sucessfully made thirty or so batches of goats milk soap, but my last few are coming out with semi transparent streaks and dots. They appear more often in bars cut from the middle of the mold. There is no change in the appearance of the top surface. The soap's pH values are perfectly good, but aesthetically, I'm not too happy with the soap. In one batch the variation occurred only around the bits of ground oats. If anyone has ideas on what it is or what might prevent it, I would be ever so thankful!! Pics are attached...
The first picture shows something that happened to me as well - those little grains on the top. That's lye particles not melted properly - I had the same, the soap itself checked fot PH was fine, but as I checked the place with the small grain - very high! So watch out - I noticed it happens because the temp of the milk is too low for the lye to melt - to avoid it I pour throught a small sieve.

Magda
 

shunt2011

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When I first stated I too bought the 8 lbs of Palm. I melted the whole thing then portioned it into smaller containers. I would then just remelt the smaller containers and pour what was needed. Now I purchase 50 lb block of homogenized palm that doesn't need to be melted and stirred from Soaper's Choice.
 
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