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Hot Process turns to dough in 1 hr. 45 min.

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seannasmommy

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I apologize if this problem has already been addressed in another thread. I tried to search for hot process problems, but didn't have much luck. I'm sure inexperience is a huge factor, because I have only tried 2 HP batches, each a different recipe. Both were cooked on low in my crock pot, stirring every 15 minutes or so, but very shortly after "applesauce" stage, at around 1 hr 45 min., both batches turned to dry, soap dough that had to be kneaded like dough to scent and color and cram into a mold. I think the problem may be the temp of my crock pot on low, because I checked last night's batch after it became dough, and it was 210 degrees F. And then when I did the zap test, it still zapped, so I know it didn't cook long enough. If I try HP again anytime soon, I'm going to try it on the "warm" setting instead of low. Any other ideas?
 

seven

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how much water did you use? i always use full water, sometimes even 3:1 (water:lye), when i do hp to make the batter as fluid as possible. i also use 1% sodium lactate. it makes a huge difference me thinks.

also, how big was your batch? 1 hour and 45 mins is a long time. i cook mine for around 45-60 mins only and it's done.

i use the warm setting in my crockpot.
 

seannasmommy

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how much water did you use? i always use full water, sometimes even 3:1 (water:lye), when i do hp to make the batter as fluid as possible. i also use 1% sodium lactate. it makes a huge difference me thinks.

also, how big was your batch? 1 hour and 45 mins is a long time. i cook mine for around 45-60 mins only and it's done.

i use the warm setting in my crockpot.
I used the full amount of water, and the recipes came from The Everything Soapmaking Book. The first was a 1 lb recipe, and the second was a 2 lb. I don't have sodium lactate yet, but I have it ordered, so I'll try that next time. The book recommended cooking it 3 hrs., but maybe I just need to watch for it to be ready and take it off much earlier than I have been. Thanks for your help!
 

Obsidian

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Did you run the recipes through a lye calculator? Often recipes in books need slight adjusting, the recipe you used could be lye heavy.

When I make HP, if it seems like its getting too dry, I will add a bit more water. Stiring less will help it not dry out as much, some people don't stir until its hit vaseline stage. I generally don't have to cook mine for more then 45 min on low.
 

seannasmommy

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did your batch have a "Vaseline" type look or consistency to it?
I couldn't decide if it was still like applesauce or if it had moved into "vaseline" yet, and then I stirred it and it was just balling up into the center.
 

seannasmommy

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Did you run the recipes through a lye calculator? Often recipes in books need slight adjusting, the recipe you used could be lye heavy.

When I make HP, if it seems like its getting too dry, I will add a bit more water. Stiring less will help it not dry out as much, some people don't stir until its hit vaseline stage. I generally don't have to cook mine for more then 45 min on low.
That's a great idea! I didn't use a lye calculator, but I will run it through one. I will try not stirring, and I'll expect it to be finished much sooner. I also saw a video where someone waited to superfat until it had gelled. I thought I might try that, since it would moisten it up a little more again to make it easier to work with. I was afraid to add any water, but I guess it would just eventually evaporate back out, wouldn't it?
 

seannasmommy

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Did you run the recipes through a lye calculator? Often recipes in books need slight adjusting, the recipe you used could be lye heavy.

When I make HP, if it seems like its getting too dry, I will add a bit more water. Stiring less will help it not dry out as much, some people don't stir until its hit vaseline stage. I generally don't have to cook mine for more then 45 min on low.
Well, the lye calculator at Bramble Berry came out to a tad more than I used, so the batches weren't lye-heavy. But interestingly enough, it said I should have used another .56 oz of water. That may have made a difference! Thanks for the idea. I will check all my future recipes :)
 

Seawolfe

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My 2 lb batches only take 45 min in the crockpot on low. I've learned to not stir, check it at 45 min to see if it looks like waxy mashed potatoes, and zap test. If no zap it gets glopped into another container (leaving dry bits behind), superfat added, stir like heck to cool a bit, add EO's and whatever, and then blop into the mold.
 

seven

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it is a good suggestion what Obsidian said, to run ANY recipe thru the lye calc. you never know, we're only humans. typos do happen.

also, don't be afraid to use more water for HP, as the batter did loose some water during cook. i'm not a fan of the rustic look, so when i do HP (which is rare), i try to make the batter as liquid as possible by doing what i said earlier (3:1 water to lye ratio and sodium lactate).
 

Candybee

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An hour and 45 minutes is too long a cook. I'm not surprized your soap became dry and doughy. I use full water in my recipe and cook on low in the crockpot about 45 minutes to an hour. You can always check doing a zap test on your tongue. So far I have never gotten zapped after an hour cook.
 

Susie

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I used the full amount of water, and the recipes came from The Everything Soapmaking Book. The first was a 1 lb recipe, and the second was a 2 lb. I don't have sodium lactate yet, but I have it ordered, so I'll try that next time. The book recommended cooking it 3 hrs., but maybe I just need to watch for it to be ready and take it off much earlier than I have been. Thanks for your help!
Always, always, always run every last recipe through a lye calculator for yourself. Never trust anyone's recipes. Not even mine. We are all human. All it takes is for someone to hit a 9 instead of a 6 (or some such) to have a HUGE problem.
 
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The Efficacious Gentleman

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I keep the lid on mine and stir now and again when it is getting closer - not before. Every 15 mins sounds a bit too often.

If you're doing HP, I would 100% wait to superfat until after it is finished cooking. The whole point of doing it is that all of the lye is gone so that your superfat remains as fats and not soap.
 

seannasmommy

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it is a good suggestion what Obsidian said, to run ANY recipe thru the lye calc. you never know, we're only humans. typos do happen.

also, don't be afraid to use more water for HP, as the batter did loose some water during cook. i'm not a fan of the rustic look, so when i do HP (which is rare), i try to make the batter as liquid as possible by doing what i said earlier (3:1 water to lye ratio and sodium lactate).
Thank you so much! I'm going to try the 3:1 ratio next time.
 

seannasmommy

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I keep the lid on mine and stir now and again when it is getting closer - not before. Every 15 mins sounds a bit too often.

If you're doing HP, I would 100% wait to superfat until after it is finished cooking. The whole point of doing it is that all of the lye is gone so that your superfat remains as fats and not soap.
Thank you for your help :)
 

seannasmommy

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I keep the lid on mine and stir now and again when it is getting closer - not before. Every 15 mins sounds a bit too often.

If you're doing HP, I would 100% wait to superfat until after it is finished cooking. The whole point of doing it is that all of the lye is gone so that your superfat remains as fats and not soap.
I have another question based on your answer. Assuming the superfat amount is built-in as a percentage on soapcalc, how do I decide how much oil to hold out to add after the cook? If my percentage is 5%, do I multiply .05 by the total soap weight before CP cure or HP cook?
 

seven

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Not TEG, but here's how i do it: let's say 1000 gr of oils with 5% SF. That would be 1000 gr x 5% = 20 gr. You then choose which oils you want to put as your SF, totaling 20 gr.


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