How long after it harderns do you cut your soap?

Discussion in 'Lye-Based Soap Forum' started by SunRiseArts, Sep 26, 2017.

  1. Sep 26, 2017 #1

    SunRiseArts

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    HP was so much easier ...:)

    I am so impatient. As soon as I feel is hard I cut my soap.

    When is the best time to do this? Should I wait more than 24 hours?

    I making a lot of soap for December, and want everything to be perfect!
     
  2. Sep 26, 2017 #2

    Kittish

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    Honestly, it depends on the soap. Some of the ones I've made started off kind of on the soft side. Give it a couple of days in the mold, then a couple of days airing out out of the mold, then cut and let it dry some more before I bevel and trim, then (finally!) onto my curing rack. I've also had a couple of batches that came out of the mold in 12 hours, were cut right away and beveled within the next day. I understand that some salt soaps come out of the mold and are ready to cut in just a few hours, and if you wait too long they turn into rocks.
     
  3. Sep 26, 2017 #3

    BattleGnome

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    I've had to wait up to five days. Comparing my soap to SoapQueen I tend to take much longer, even when I've used Brambleberry mixes or recipes. Environment and recipe play a huge roll in unmolding times
     
  4. Sep 26, 2017 #4

    shunt2011

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    It will depend on your recipe(s) and if you gel it or not. My standard recipes I can generally unmold and cut 12-18 hours or so. 24 at the most. I do use Sodium Lactate in most of my batches which helps with the unmolding/cutting as well.
     
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  5. Sep 26, 2017 #5

    navigator9

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    As shunt mentioned, it depends on whether the soap has gelled or not. This is the main reason I like to CPOP, and gel my soaps. Whatever time of day I soap, I unmold and cut the following morning. The only time I ever had difficulty removing my soap from a silicone mold, was when I put it in the fridge to prevent gel, and (in my early days of soapmaking, before I knew better), then tried to unmold the following morning. The soap was soft and doughy, and I thought it was a failed batch. It also zapped like crazy, so I was sure I had messed up. Little did I know, that saponification was still ongoing, and that several days later, the soap would be hard, zappless and ready to cut. For ungelled soap, it can take several days to be ready, that's why I like the almost instant gratification of gelled soaps.
     
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  6. Sep 26, 2017 #6

    artemis

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    FO can play a part, too. I had two identical recipes, same process, same mold type. The only difference was FO. One was out and cut in about 10 hours. The other was in thr mold for almost a week.
     
  7. Sep 26, 2017 #7

    toxikon

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    My usual schedule, with a high-lard recipe, no salt and silicone molds.

    Day 1: Batter is poured into mold, loosely tented with parchment paper and left at room temperature to gel
    Day 2: Pull on sides of silicone molds to loosen and allow a bit of airflow on the sides
    Day 3: Unmold. If it seems kind of iffy that it'll come out clean, I'll throw it in the freezer for an hour or so before the attempt.
    Day 4: Allow loaf to breath, flipping after 12 hours.
    Day 5: Check firmness, allow it to breath for another day if needed. If firm enough, cut 'er up!
     
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  8. Sep 26, 2017 #8

    Gini

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    So much patience in this group. It's inspiring!!

    I gel with CPOP (Living in Mesa, AZ the "O" means outside at this time of year.) Most recipes I usually pull off the liner (silicone or old-fashioned butcher paper) within 12 hours and cut at about 8-10 hours after that. It's sometimes a little bit sticky, but cuts well. Then wait about two days :( before beveling.
     
  9. Sep 26, 2017 #9

    Kamahido

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    It depends on your recipe, but I can cut my bars after 8 hours.
     
  10. Sep 26, 2017 #10

    soapmaker

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    You must have a lot of patience. Also a lot of room. I use SL, unmold in 12-15 hrs. and cut right away. Then I get everything out of the way so I can make more!
     
  11. Sep 26, 2017 #11

    toxikon

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    I only make 1 or 2 loaves twice a month, so they really don't take up too much room! My soap SUPPLIES, on the other hand... :crazy:
     
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  12. Sep 26, 2017 #12

    Susie

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    I do gel, do not use SL or salt, and I unmold and cut usually before 18 hours has passed. If my soap is firm enough to handle gently, I turn it over and pull the freezer paper off at about 12 hours, then cut as soon as I can't dent it easily.
     
  13. Sep 26, 2017 #13

    IrishLass

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    Right here, silly!
    Like the others have said- it depends on the recipe, water amount, and whether or not you gel. I use a water discount, encourage full gel and can unmold, cut and bevel all within the time span of 6 - 24 hours (depending on which recipe I'm using).


    IrishLass :)
     
  14. Sep 26, 2017 #14

    jcandleattic

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    Another vote for "it depends" on several factors.

    I cut within 18-24 hours, but could probably cut earlier, but with a FT job, that's when I can get around to it.
     
  15. Nov 7, 2017 #15

    iwannasoap

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    I think it only depends on how much water you use or the real amount that you actually did superfat and not how much you think you superfatted as to how long you can unmold and cut.

    My pure olive oil soap was made and cut the same day and in my opinion that would not have happened if I had used too much water.
     
  16. Nov 7, 2017 #16

    CaraBou

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    Gelling matters. You can make a high water soap, and if it gels you can unmold and cut well within 24 hours. I intentionally made a really high water soap a few weeks ago, and when I cut it the next day, it was literally wet but firm. I wouldn't have believed it if not for seeing with my own eyes.
     
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  17. Nov 9, 2017 #17

    SherylG

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    I cut as soon as it's firm enough. I have waited too long before and had the soap so hard I couldn't slide a knife through it, so I don't wait any longer than I have to.
     
  18. Nov 10, 2017 #18

    iwannasoap

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    Yes, gelling or no gelling, can go either way. But however, if you used more water that means that you used less oil and less lye and it will not get as hot. Your more likely to end up with a partially gelled soap loaf that that will look like an oval inside of your soap.
    If more water is added, depending on the amount, it is really better in my opinion to not let it gel at all to avoid any ovals inside the loaf.
    The reason why adding more oils and less water gets hotter is because there is more lye present. Its like adding paper to a fire. The more paper the more heat it puts off.
     
  19. Nov 10, 2017 #19

    DeeAnna

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    "...If more water is added, depending on the amount, it is really better in my opinion to not let it gel at all to avoid any ovals inside the loaf. The reason why adding more oils and less water gets hotter is because there is more lye present. Its like adding paper to a fire. The more paper the more heat it puts off. ..."

    Nope, this is not correct soap chemistry and it makes no sense. You appear to be using "common sense" to formulate a theory, but unfortunately that doesn't always work when talking about soap.

    As the water content goes down, soap is less and less likely to go into the gel phase. "Gel" is simply a physical state (like solid, liquid, and gas are physical states) that soap can become depending on temperature and water content.

    A lower water soap may get as hot or perhaps even hotter than a soap with a higher water content, but lower water soap (in particular, soap made with 33% lye concentration or higher) really doesn't gel very easily. A proven reliable solution to the problem of "bullseye rings" in soap caused by partial gelling is to reduce the amount of water in the recipe for a given amount of fat and lye.

    Read Scientific Soapmaking by Kevin Dunn and read Clara Lindberg's blog in which she experiments with water content in soap and whether the soap gels or not.
     
    Last edited: Nov 10, 2017
  20. Nov 10, 2017 #20

    iwannasoap

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    I know what your trying to get at but your agreeing with me and contradicting yourself at the same time.
    First you said "As the water content goes down, soap is less and less likely to go into the gel phase"
    Then you say "A lower water soap may get as hot or perhaps even hotter than a soap with a higher water content".
    Those statements contradict each other.
    What I said is and this is true.(I do have a thread that proves this) As the water content goes down, more lye and more oil can be added to create a hotter gel phase. More water = Less water + less Oil to fill the same space.
    More water can create a cooler gel phase which will result in those Bulls eye rings and I perfectly agree with you but your disagreeing to just disagree no offense.
    In addition, great book. I read it already and I am glad that you did too so maybe I can ask you a question.
    By getting on here I have learned how to use the acids and I have started another spreadsheet to help me make even better soap using the acids. The only loaves I have ruined and froze up are those that had incorrect water amounts and the fact that it was really hard to find the definition of "full water" and my favorite "discounted water". That never made sense to me until I found that book. He mentions it too about the confusion and that it doesn't make sense. But any way, our soaps do last a while, they are good maybe not the best looking but are good and they definitely do the job without wrinkling up your hands. There has to be something I am doing wrong to not get repeat customers. It is either the product, price or advertising. What is your suggestion and what would your next step be?
     

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