Getting frustranted

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Well-Known Member
Apr 29, 2008
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I think there may be a problem with my scale. Maybe it doesn't handle small amounts well?

Here is what happens: I put the cup to measure oils on the scale, press tare, it reads 0, I start adding oil, say I need 8 ounces, it'll go to say 7.2 so I keep spooning coconut or liquid into the glass (without taking the glass off the scale) and keep spooning it on and sometimes it'll read the same or it'll go up to 8.5 or whatever, so I scoop some out, it remains at the same number, then it'll drop to under 7, something like that.

It's gotten to the point that when I'm finished measuring the oil, I'll tap the rim of the glass with my finger to make sure the reading stays the same. Sometimes I tap it and the number will change and remain that number. Then I'll have to add more oil, water or lye.


When I measure lye, I put a lightweight plastic cup on the scale. I just switched cups, the ones I'm using currently weigh 0.2 oz. Sometimes when I put the cup on the scale remains at zero. Huh? The last batch I made I said **** the cup and just measured the lye and added slightly extra to make up for the weight of the cup.

The last batch, I took it out of the mold less than 24 hours later. I tongue tested and no zap. I've never gotten a zap, I've tasted all the soaps in the house and no zap.

So I'm thinking that my oils/lye/water are all off, that's why no zap. It's looking and behaving more and more like soap with each batch I make, but there's a problem if there's no zap, right? Is there a such thing as lye-light soap?

This is a brand new scale I'm using. Ugh! Does anyone expierence this with their scale? Any recommandations for another scale?
Natalie said:
but there's a problem if there's no zap, right? Is there a such thing as lye-light soap?
Lye-light is just another way of saying superfatted. If there's no zap there's no problem. If there's a zap then that is a problem.

But the way you describe how your scale is working I wouldn't trust the scale. You should return it and either get one that isn't broken or get a refund and buy a different brand.
If it has a gram unit of measurement, try using it. Grams are a very accurate measurement and you should not have that problem. If it does that while in the gram unit mode, switch out the scale. Remember 1 ounce is 28.35 grams. :wink:

Paul :wink:
yeah I have a scale I bought from target, does the same thing even in grams... i tend to just shoot for the higher number, I think it rounds up or scale is possessed lol.... also what might help, make sure no speakers are on or cellies close to it...itll throw off the reading...(I have worked with very sensitive scales and experienced this often)
I make one pound batches, and only use the "gram" unit for measurement. When making a batch that small, being off even just "a little" could throw the batch completely off and ruin it. Larger batches -- from what I read -- aren't quite as critical.

I also only use an AC adapter on mine when using it, even though I have the option of battery only... I just don't want to take a chance that the battery is on its way out & having it give me wacky measurements.
Grams are always more accurate than ounces. A scale measuring tenth ounce units can divide an ounce into 10 parts. A scale measuring grams divides that same ounce into 28 parts.

But it sounds like the scale in the OP is broken, and Ian's too if it does the same thing. You should be able to add and subtract small amounts of an ingredient and see the scale move up or down by mere tenths of an ounce (or grams). If you can't do this then it's difficult to measure to tenth-ounce accuracy, and you need that accuracy particularly with small batches.

I'm pretty sure a scale will just quit turning on at all if you run the battery out. I bought my scale several years ago and use it daily for weighing food portions. It continues operating on internal batteries that are not even user replaceable. I've sure had my money's worth now, and whenever it quits I'm getting a dual grams/ounce scale. Other similar products, one day you turn it on and it refuses to turn, end of life. Lucky for you if your batteries are replaceable. :)
I only measure in grams. I've been making 2-pound test batches since March, but even at higher weights, I would only want to measure in grams to get the very best accuracy as I can. I also round off. It is my understanding that making soap in any weight under 2-pounds should be measure in grams, being that you can't afford anything but accuracy in the smaller batches as there isn't much wiggle room. Test your scale for accuracy before use. Put five quarters on it. They should weigh exactly one ounce.
That's why I want a new scale, so I can get one that has both grams and ounces, grams for soap and ounces for food. But my present ounces only unit is alive and well. Decisions, decisions...
Ive got a teeny tiny one but I dont want to use it for soap cause it cant hold much..maybe a # or so...but it measures REAL accurate to the 100th place :)