Droopy Soap?

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BrewerGeorge

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Please take a look at the attached picture. It is 4 weeks old today. As I begin to think about shaping and using it, I notice that it seems to have developed a bit of a droop. Some of the bars on the front row sort of lean to the right, while some on the back row lean to the left. (These bars have been moved around numerous times during their cure, so I don't know their original orientation in the loaf or on the rack.) I'm absolutely certain that these bars were straight when cut because I use a knife guide that can't not cut straight bars. They have been stored in my garage with a light towel over the top, but neither the temperature nor the humidity has been at all extreme during their cure.

Any ideas what caused the droop?

In case it matters, the recipe was:
8 oz Lard
4 oz GV Shortening (ran out of lard, but DID recalculate lye)
12 oz Coconut oil
12 oz Olive Oil
2 oz Avocado Oil
2 oz Castor Oil

14 oz RO water by weight
5.75 oz of lye

Combined at roughly 125F for both. Trace took quite a while - 7 or 8 minutes probably.

At medium trace:
1 tsp or rose clay in 2/3 of the batter for the pink color and nothing in the remaining 1/3.
2 oz of BB's Cherry Blossom FO, which accelerated so much that it forced me to glop the two colors into the mold instead of the planned swirl.

Gelled strongly with a towel around the wooden mold and I cut them 24 hours later. They were a bit sticky when cut, but nothing drastic.
 
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spenny92

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It looks to me like they have warped a little. I think that can happen when using full water.

I'm sure someone more experienced will chime in, but I think it's purely a cosmetic issue. I wouldn't worry about it - they are handmade, after all. :)
 

Obsidian

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I agree, its warping. More likely to happen when you use full water or if its stored in a place where it will dry fast.
 

KristaY

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Another vote for warping due to full water. I've had a couple of batches do that exact thing or become concave on the sides. I also live in a very dry climate so that didn't help. Once I decreased my water, no more warping. Very pretty soap though and nice save with a speedy FO!
 

navigator9

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Not to disagree with those above, but it is possible to get an uneven cut with a single cut knife slicer. I know, because I made one for myself, with a nice little slit, just big enough for the knife to fit into, and slice the soap. The problem with this type of cutter is, that as the knife slices, the loaf can slide a bit. But this usually results in a wedge shaped bar, narrower at the top or bottom, not a "droopy" looking bar like yours. I'd try lying them down on their sides, rather than their edge, to see if they'll straighten out.
 

Dharlee

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Could this happen from cutting too soon?
 

DeeAnna

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If you try laying them down, put the concave face down. If its warpage due to unequal moisture loss, the longer (convex) side is the one with more moisture. That's the one you want facing up so it will lose moisture a little quicker than the other side.

If it's an issue of how the bars were cut, then I doubt this will help, but it's worth a try.

Also look at where the pink parts are located on each of the bars. It's hard to say for sure from a photo, but it seems like the warpage is all happening right where the white transitions into the pink. Not sure what that means ... might not mean anything ... but thought I'd mention it. ;) Do you have a mostly white bar -- is it warped too?
 
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