First CP batch

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Todd Ziegler

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I have been reading this forum for almost two years now and I just made my first CP batch. Everything appears to have went well. It is now in the mold going through the hardening process. Is there any advice or wisdom that someone would want to share with me? I have plenty of time for reading comments while the soap hardens and cures. I am so excited to see how this turns out and any lessons that I might learn from success or failure.
 

cmzaha

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Congratulations on your first batch. We really cannot lend any advice yet other than patience until you know how it turns out or we know your recipe. At this point, any advice would just be given blindly.
 

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Congratulations! Are you gelling your soap? Just watch it for possible overheating. Otherwise when it’s hard enough cut it and set it aside to cure. How long it takes to cut will depend on if gelled or not as well as what oils/butters used and how much liquid as well.
 

Todd Ziegler

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I used 7 ounces of extra virgin olive oil, palm oil and 76° coconut oil with a 10% super fat. So I believe that it will be a soft soap. I just hope that it's not to soft. I am familiar with the gelling that you are talking about but not very sure I understand it completely. My original plan was to just let it sit for however long it needs before I un-mold it. I was thinking of 48 hours before I slice it up and start the curing process. I hope this helps.

Congratulations! Are you gelling your soap? Just watch it for possible overheating. Otherwise when it’s hard enough cut it and set it aside to cure. How long it takes to cut will depend on if gelled or not as well as what oils/butters used and how much liquid as well.
I am not sure on how long to wait until I determine that it has gelled or going through the gelling process.

It is gelling but I don't know wether to put in the fridge or some place cooler.
 

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shunt2011

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I used 7 ounces of extra virgin olive oil, palm oil and 76° coconut oil with a 10% super fat. So I believe that it will be a soft soap. I just hope that it's not to soft. I am familiar with the gelling that you are talking about but not very sure I understand it completely. My original plan was to just let it sit for however long it needs before I un-mold it. I was thinking of 48 hours before I slice it up and start the curing process. I hope this helps.


I am not sure on how long to wait until I determine that it has gelled or going through the gelling process.

It is gelling but I don't know wether to put in the fridge or some place cooler.
I would just let it gel. It’s easier to unmold sooner.
 

lsg

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That is one of the hardest things, waiting. Congrats on your first batch. By the way, partial gel doesn't hurt the soap. It is still usable.
 

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Welcome, Todd! My basic recipe is similar to yours. I unmold at 48 hours. I use a silicone loaf mold and I know it's time to unmold if I pull the edges away and the soap doesn't adhere to the edges. It's hard to wait for unmolding and even harder to wait 6 weeks for the cure! Keep us posted and have fun.
 

Todd Ziegler

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Thanks for the replies and encouragement. I spent 2 years reading on this forum because I thought that the process was very hard. Although I don't know if my first batch is a success or not. I do know that I succeed in just trying and overcoming my fears of the process. Regardless of how my first batch turns out, I am going to keep making soap. It is amazing how every term, process or description becomes crystal clear after you finally do your first batch. The one thing that I am glad I did was READ before I tried to make soap. Nothing will replace the experience of actually making a batch but since I read so much, I recognized everything that was happening.

I have over 30 different types of oils (because I use them for other projects) and I was wondering how I would incorporate them into a recipe. Is it better to keep olive oil and coconut oil in the recipe (33%,33%) and replace the palm oil with one of my other oils? I want to do a olive, coconut, raspberry, carrot, passion fruit recipe. With the last 3 oils making up 30%. Any thoughts?
 
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Kcryss

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I have over 30 different types of oils (because I use them for other projects) and I was wondering how I would incorporate them into a recipe. Is it better to keep olive oil and coconut oil in the recipe (33%,33%) and replace the palm oil with one of my other oils? I want to do a olive, coconut, raspberry, carrot, passion fruit recipe. With the last 3 oils making up 30%. Any thoughts?
I was using a lot of olive oil, mostly because that's what I had on hand. I've since learned that it's best not to use a lot of olive unless you like waiting for months to use the soap. The cure time is longer with a lot of olive oil.

I would use DeeAnna's information about what the numbers mean in soap calculators and then use soapcalc or another calculator to determine how best to use the oils you have.

From what I've seen/learned olive, coconut, palm and animal fats need to have a larger percentage and then other oils can be added in smaller percentages to keep the fats correct.

Here is DeeAnna's page. https://classicbells.com/soap/soapyStuff.asp look for the link on "What do the soapcalc numbers really mean"
Here is another page with good info on the fats in oils as well. https://www.modernsoapmaking.com/the-most-popular-fatty-acid-profiles-in-soapmaking/

Happy soaping. :)
 

Todd Ziegler

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I was using a lot of olive oil, mostly because that's what I had on hand. I've since learned that it's best not to use a lot of olive unless you like waiting for months to use the soap. The cure time is longer with a lot of olive oil.

I would use DeeAnna's information about what the numbers mean in soap calculators and then use soapcalc or another calculator to determine how best to use the oils you have.

From what I've seen/learned olive, coconut, palm and animal fats need to have a larger percentage and then other oils can be added in smaller percentages to keep the fats correct.

Here is DeeAnna's page. https://classicbells.com/soap/soapyStuff.asp look for the link on "What do the soapcalc numbers really mean"
Here is another page with good info on the fats in oils as well. https://www.modernsoapmaking.com/the-most-popular-fatty-acid-profiles-in-soapmaking/

Happy soaping. :)
Thanks

That is some great reading material.

Welcome, Todd! My basic recipe is similar to yours. I unmold at 48 hours. I use a silicone loaf mold and I know it's time to unmold if I pull the edges away and the soap doesn't adhere to the edges. It's hard to wait for unmolding and even harder to wait 6 weeks for the cure! Keep us posted and have fun.
You are absolutely right! My soap pulled away from the edges very cleanly. However I am going to wait 2 more days before I pull it out and trim the bars for curing.
 
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thetoe

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Hey Todd, I was in the same boat man. Had been lurking for a while and decided to take the plunge. The garage has now turned into a place of zen for me. Beer making, coffee roasting, and now soap making! Congrats on your first batch!
 

Todd Ziegler

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Hey Todd, I was in the same boat man. Had been lurking for a while and decided to take the plunge. The garage has now turned into a place of zen for me. Beer making, coffee roasting, and now soap making! Congrats on your first batch!
Thank you. I am remodeling a big garage I bought and I am going to turn half of it into my cosmetics lab. I also make lotions, lip balms etc. and now I can add soap to the list. Up until now, I was only doing M&P. I can't wait until everything is finished because I will have an apartment upstairs and my soap and cosmetic lab downstairs.
 

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Don't wait too long to cut. If it gets too hard, it won't cut easy or will break apart. Once your soap feels as firm as a block of cheddar cheese, its ready to cut.
 

Todd Ziegler

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Don't wait too long to cut. If it gets too hard, it won't cut easy or will break apart. Once your soap feels as firm as a block of cheddar cheese, its ready to cut.
My soap is in a silicone mold that makes eight 4 ounce bars. Should I go ahead and separate them?

My soap is in a silicone mold that makes eight 4 ounce bars. Should I go ahead and separate them?
My soap is in a silicone mold that makes eight 4 ounce bars. Should I go ahead and separate them?
When I poke the soap it still has a little give to it. So should I wait until tomorrow before breaking it up into the individual bars?
 
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Obsidian

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I would cut it now. As long as you can get it out of the mold without squishing it, its ready.

Use the thinnest blade knife you have. Chef knifes with a thick spine can cause cracking.
 

Todd Ziegler

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I would cut it now. As long as you can get it out of the mold without squishing it, its ready.

Use the thinnest blade knife you have. Chef knifes with a thick spine can cause cracking.
Here's a picture of the bars after I cut them. There was a little crumble but I think it was from the cutter I used.
 

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Obsidian

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Good job, they look good. After they've set up for a couple days, you can clean up the edges if desired.
Now comes the hard part, waiting to try it out.
 

Todd Ziegler

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Good job, they look good. After they've set up for a couple days, you can clean up the edges if desired.
Now comes the hard part, waiting to try it out.
Thanks. I am so excited to try my next batch. I am going to keep it simple but I have a lot of oils to choose from. I am going to research some of my oils and see what they could add to my soap or if I shouldn't use them.
 

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Congratulations on your first batch.

Keep notes on your batches and eventually you will find what combination of oils you like best. (or in my case keep experimenting looking for your perfect recipe)

This is an expensive hobby and you may want to keep the more expensive oils for lotions etc. Using jojoba in soap can be a waste, but in whipped body butter it is the bomb.
 

Todd Ziegler

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Congratulations on your first batch.

Keep notes on your batches and eventually you will find what combination of oils you like best. (or in my case keep experimenting looking for your perfect recipe)

This is an expensive hobby and you may want to keep the more expensive oils for lotions etc. Using jojoba in soap can be a waste, but in whipped body butter it is the bomb.
Thanks for the advice and your right some of my oils are very expensive. I took very detailed notes on what I did.
 
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