Insulating soap and tiny batch size for individual bar

SoapMakingForum

Help Support SoapMakingForum:

bdenunzio

New Member
Joined
Jun 20, 2016
Messages
3
Reaction score
3
Hi. I am new to making soap. I have been doing research for months now and am ready (i think) to make my first CP soap. I have two questions though. First is I know that several of the Lye Calculator programs also resize recipes. Can I resize to make a single 4-5 oz bar? Also I have noticed that you insulate the loaf molds while they harden up during the first 24 hours. If I am pouring into a silicone mold that has many small soaps will covering up be enough heat? I could set on a heating pad then cover if this would help.
 

dixiedragon

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 1, 2013
Messages
6,472
Reaction score
4,905
Location
Birmingham, Alabama, USA
Welcome! I do not recommend doing a batch that small unless you have an insanely good scale. Do you have a food scale that measures in grams? If so, you could safely do a 1 lb batch, which is only 4 bars.

With individual silicone molds - are these food molds? Are they oven safe? If so, what I do is cover a cookie sheet with wax paper or freezer paper, and put the silicone mold on there. The paper will protect the cookie sheet b/c raw soap reacts with aluminum. Pre-warm the oven to 150 or less, then put the cookie sheet + mold + soap in the oven. Turn the oven off. Let it sit overnight.
 

navigator9

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 17, 2014
Messages
2,713
Reaction score
3,092
Location
New England
To go even a bit further than dixiedragon's suggestion, I also preheat my silicone molds in the warm oven while I'm soaping, then take them out, fill them, and put them back. I have the oven on at it's lowest setting while I soap, but turn it off when I put the filled molds back in. Leave it, without opening the door to check, til the next morning.
 

Seawolfe

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 21, 2014
Messages
3,272
Reaction score
2,998
Location
So Cal
Unless your scale can properly measure fractions of a gram, I wouldn't try that small a batch - any inaccuracies would ruin the soap.

To gel in my individual molds I use a heating pad - I've had bad luck with my oven overheating the soap.
 

bdenunzio

New Member
Joined
Jun 20, 2016
Messages
3
Reaction score
3
Thank you so much for your quick responses. I do have a scale that weighs in grams max 150 gr capacity which is a little over 5 oz so that should work. I'll try a recipe for one bar on one of those recipes with special ingredients and see what happens.

I have silicone molds I ordered online from china due to budget limitations. They say they can go to 230C so I should be able to put them in the oven on a lined tray. I'll pre-warm one to see what happens. If it doesn't die I have a recipe that will fill my two trays so I'll try one in the oven and one on a heating pad to see if there is any difference in the finished bar.

I did build two different size 1 LB molds so I'll try a lb recipe to see how those turn out. Guess all this will take a few days. Will let you know how my maiden soap voyage goes. Thanks again for all you suggestions. Now I just need the courage to work with the lye (shiver).
 

The Efficacious Gentleman

Lifetime Supporter
Joined
Nov 19, 2013
Messages
8,998
Reaction score
9,103
Location
Austria
It won't work - I have a scale that does 0.1g and the smallest I would go is 100g, with a 1g scale I would do 500. At 141 grams (5oz) your 5% superfat is 7g. If you mis measure here and there, especially with the lye, it's not great. If the scale says 10g, that could be 10.1 or 10.9 and in these figures it's not far off being a whole % difference and it would look fine on the scale

With that size, you also have bars left over to see how it develops over years, which is great fun.
 

kchaystack

Supporting Member
Joined
Jan 14, 2015
Messages
1,906
Reaction score
2,080
Location
Monroe, LA
It won't work - I have a scale that does 0.1g and the smallest I would go is 100g, with a 1g scale I would do 500. At 141 grams (5oz) your 5% superfat is 7g. If you mis measure here and there, especially with the lye, it's not great. If the scale says 10g, that could be 10.1 or 10.9 and in these figures it's not far off being a whole % difference and it would look fine on the scale

With that size, you also have bars left over to see how it develops over years, which is great fun.
Actually it could be anywhere from 9.5 to 10.4 grams. ;) 10.5 should round to 11.

Tho most scales that weight to 1g the variance can be even worse than that - the smaller the amount you need to weigh the worse the accuracy usually. so trying to get 5g is less accurate than if you are weighing 50g.
 

dixiedragon

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 1, 2013
Messages
6,472
Reaction score
4,905
Location
Birmingham, Alabama, USA
We have scales at work we use for measuring things similar to playing cards. A playing card weighs 1.3 grams. These scales are $800 - used.

I still strongly recommend against the 1 bar batch, but if you are determined to do it -
1) Round lye down and everything else up.
2) After you are done weighing out your individual oils, weigh the entire batch of oils to make sure your total is where you are supposed to be.
 

IrishLass

Staff member
Admin
Moderator
Joined
Feb 11, 2008
Messages
17,287
Reaction score
11,090
Location
Right here, silly!
Yep- when it comes to working with lye, the smaller the batch, the exponentially greater the chance of failure if you are not using a scale that can weigh in fractions of a gram accurately. Whenever I make single-bar batches, I use my 200g x .01g scale.


IrishLass :)
 

penelopejane

Well-Known Member
Joined
Sep 19, 2015
Messages
5,460
Reaction score
4,250
Location
Sth Coast, NSW, Australia
ok, you sold me. I will do a minimum 1 BL batch for 4-6 bars. I can collect the extras from each batch and send them to my family to fight over for christmas gifts.

It also gives you a chance to keep one for a while and see what it is like in 6 months or a year. A worthwhile experiment.
 

dixiedragon

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 1, 2013
Messages
6,472
Reaction score
4,905
Location
Birmingham, Alabama, USA
I give goodie bags with 6 bars of soap and several lip balms and lotions to my co-workers and my family members. That will quickly wipe out your stash of left overs!
 

gdawgs

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 9, 2016
Messages
150
Reaction score
147
Location
Minnesota
I have a scale that I use for reloading that would work for this and I wouldn't be afraid to do it. It's accurate down to 0.002 grams. The problem is that in only goes up to 20 grams.

I inadvertently went the other direction on my first batch. I didn't think the batch size through at all. I just used a recipe out of a book I bought. It was a 5.5 pound batch. Fortunately, the soap is pretty decent. Not the prettiest looking, but it's a nice soap. I think 1-2 pounds is a good batch size for a first attempt.
 

Latest posts

Top