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Lye Pockets?

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littleseedfarm

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Hi All,

We are new to the forum, but have used its threads for trouble-shooting in the past. It's a wonderful resource, so we just wanted to first say thanks to everyone that administrates and contributes!

The reason for this thread is to share an issue that we had with a recent batch. Upon slicing the bars we noticed big white pockets in the bars. You can see in the attached photos.

They are a bit crystalline and crumbly, so we thought they might be lye pockets, but upon licking them there was no "zap". Just normal soap taste. Probably not a good idea to lick a giant pocket of lye, but I did anyway and my tongue didn't burn or zap or have any experience other than tasting soap. We have not yet tested with pH strips.

The soap batch is an activated charcoal soap. The only ingredients are olive oil, coconut oil, goat's milk, lye and activated charcoal. It is superfatted at 5%. I've made approx. 250 pounds of this soap without an issue, so I'm a bit stumped at to why this most recent batch turned out strange.

The one change that we've made recently is moving from a 5# mold to a 10# mold. It's the same exact mold, only longer. Otherwise, everything about the soapmaking process, etc, remained the same.

I have some theories as to what might have happened, but I'd love to hear your thoughts! Thanks and we're excited to be a part of the forum.

James & Eileen

AC lye pocket.jpg

AC lye pockets 2.jpg
 

judymoody

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The size of the mold can change how your soap behaves during saponification. More thermal mass so probably a hotter gel and longer to cool off. That's my theory, anyhow. If it weren't for your negative zap test, I'd have guessed lye pockets.
 

pamielynn

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Could it be the milk reacting to more heat? (the heat as Judymoody said?)
 

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