Moldettes? Moldecitos? Mini-molds! :)

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I've just today made these mini-molds so that I can make small test batches to explore recipes or to discover the effects of EOs/FOs or colorants or whatever. Each mold makes 4 bars 3-1/2" x 2-1/2" x 1-1/4" or whatever desired depth up to 1-1/2" maximum. A typical batch size is about 1 lb of oil. (1-1/4" thickness uses 17.5 oz oil.)

As can be seen from the photo, the mini-molds disassemble for "logette" removal. ;) I intend to cut an over-size piece of freezer paper to cover the bottom, then install the sides (holding the freezer paper down) and then use double-sided plastic tape to hold pieces of freezer paper to the 4 sides.

The flat pieces at right are to cover the top of the soap. They fit inside the mold so that the top can be pushed down to flatten the top surface of the soap. I intend to cover the soap with a piece of plastic wrap first, to keep the soap from sticking to the top. The system results in complete containment on all 6 sides of the logette and should yield 4 perfectly rectangular bars.


One of my first projects will be to make a few mini-batches of single oil soaps to discover the color and soaping qualities of the oils independently, so that I can better understand their effect in multi-oil recipes.
Hey, that's a good idea!!! :)

I'm actually lining one right now, and it's too late to go back to Home Depot today. I might try that idea soon.
Sure! I was thinking of taking pics tonight or tomorrow morning when I use it the first time. I'd like to do it right now but I'm recognizing that I'm tired and maybe it's better to not push myself. OTOH I'd love to be breaking out those puppies tomorrow morning. I'm thinkin' that I've already got SoapCalc going on the formula for a bar of pure palm, yeah a very complicated recipe. ;)

I think I'll do it tomorrow morning, then got to visit my oilmonger in Simi Valley and go for a doctors appointment, then rush home and hopefully my WSP will be on my door.

It sounds like my day will be fun tomorrow, goodies from WSP, Christening my new mini-mold and getting a bunch of new oils from my oilmonger. It will be my first reorder of coconut and palm, having nearly expended my 1 gal of each for my initial soaping foray.

I bet you remember the good old days when you first started, the excitement of getting mass quantities of common and rare oils. :)
Lovehound said:
I bet you remember the good old days when you first started, the excitement of getting mass quantities of common and rare oils. :)
Sigh... Its true... twenty pounds of just coconut oil isn't nearly as fun...
Well I'm getting at least 30 pounds of oils tomorrow, maybe more, 4 one-gallon pails minimum. I haven't taken a final checklist yet. And then there's my WSP order, another gallon within it too, sweet almond oil (not available at my oilmonger). Few pounds of hemp seed oil too. :)

Btw I did take pics of making my palm oil bars. I have a few more to shoot, then gotta crop 'em and I'll post 'em tomorrow.

Nobody would make palm oil bars for actual use of course. I just want to see what they are like. There's less than $3 of oils and lye in this run, hardly worth worrying about. That's what I like about the mini-molds. Even chock full of expensive oils I doubt a run would cost more than a dozen dollars or so. Who wants to make $3 bars anyway?
i tried (ok, made my DH do it) lining my mold with the silicone caulk, and it just got sticky and never really cured right. is there any way to fix it?
I saw that write up and was thinking of trying it. I can't say until then. Maybe you slurped it on too thickly?
bettycrackpot said:
no, its very thin.... it just never cured. ruined my .50 mold too! (although i lined it the other night, i was NOT happy about it)
Yeah mine didn;'t end up very good either. Couldn't get the silicone to get smooth enough? I just line them in freezer paper and just use them like how I always did... I think they gel better now...
im so glad yours didnt work out that great either! (im not, but it makes me feel less dumb..YKWIM?)

maybe if i do another layer..... hrmmm
What is a .50 mold? Used for making .50 cal ammo? :D

Just a suggestion: If it never cured you don't want to add another layer. Not curing may have been caused by contaminants (soap from previous uses) or could be caused by low temperatures or high humidity.

To fix it you should try some solvent, read the ingredient list and see if you can figure which ingredient it is. Or remind me and I'll go to home Depot and get some and try it myself, and I can tell you what to clean it off with too. The solvent would remove the uncured caulk. You could either try again or forget it.

I think I'll try it on one of my mini-molds. I've got a new idea that might make a better mini-mold and if so the old ones will be obsolete anyway. Particularly if the caulk works. The molds would be almost effortless to use then.

I wish I had access to big factories. I could make plastic molds that snap apart and won't stick to soap. I'd become a millionaire. I'd buy SMF and I'd give all the present members free lifetime supply of all soaper supplies. I'd run for President and spoil Hillary's chances in 2012.

Ah but alas, I have no factory. 8)
Greg, my molds are plastic (HDPE) lined, they come apart, and I'm not a millionaire. Been at this 3 years, still no million! :( :lol:


Hiya Paul. Uh, dude, I was just kidding! :D :D :D

The thought of a one person soaper business making that person a millionaire is so ludicrous as to almost make me fall out of my chair, but I haven't yet soaked up enough coffee this morning to be sufficiently energetic.

Here's pics of my regular sized molds, made three weeks ago. The small one continues to be my work horse because it's a very good size for a novice, and the bigger one will suit me when I feel like making bigger batches later. I think I'll make more of these in the near future, except different sizes, and I'll probably experiment with permanent linings too like your HDPE.

Small mold takes 2.7# batch size (oil wt) and makes a dozen bars, or poured flat takes 1.5# poured flat and makes 6-7 bars. The construction is obvious, and I bet many others have made exactly the same molds except for the dimensions.

Large mold takes 6.5# (or 3.7# poured flat) and makes 28 bars (or 16 bars). I haven't tried this one yet. This information is provided for educational purposes only. Use at your own risk. ;) ;) ;)

Obviously Paul I'm not the expert wood crafter that you are, and in fact everything I know about woodworking comes from just getting a table saw, drill press, handsaw and miter box, hand tools, etc., and just doing the obvious.

Paul will recognize the construction materials but I wonder if anybody else does. Hint: Look in your bathroom or kitchen. ;)
its a "mold" (read: wooden wine box) i found at the flea market for fifty cents. it holds a 6 lb batch perfectly! let me know how your caulk works out.

is it a counter top? or a drawer?
bettycrackpot said:
is it a counter top? or a drawer?
Crackpot Betty wins the prize, and I'm awarding her a big smile! :D

Carpenters make kitchen and bathroom drawers using stock that already has the groove in the bottom to fit the drawer bottom. All I had to do is cut it to the proper lengths and dado the end pieces into the side pieces. (The dados are the notches that hold the end pieces in place.) You use a similar construction for drawers except one end has a covering plate (the front of the drawer) instead of projecting like my molds.

I haven't seen mention of this technique on the Internet but it's so incredibly obvious that I'd bet $1,000,000 that other amateur soap mold makers have made exactly identical molds except for the dimensions. They don't work to badly either, very easy to disassemble to get your log out, and you stick your freezer paper to the pieces with double-backed tape before you assemble the mold. :)
Beautiful work Greg!! I wish I had half the energy you have!!

And Paul, yours is lovely, of course.... is that the 1-pounder or 2-pounder?

I wish I was as talented as you guys & that I had the neat toys you do!!