Need recommendations for a mini crock pot

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kc1ble

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So I'm planning on doing several test batches of shaving soaps that will likely have high percentages of stearic acid. From what I've read so far, hot process is going to be the only way to go which is fine, but I want to get a small, 1 quart or so crock pot to cook the batches. I've been searching for an inexpensive model and am not sure which would be best. It seams stearic acid takes a lot of heat to melt and most of the small cookers I've seen don't have a temperature adjustment so I don't know if they get hot enough or not. If you know of one that will work for me, please let me know, thanks.
 

Navaria

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You need this little guy right here! I only use it on low and it gets plenty hot. I have to watch I don't overcook stuff with it! Not sure where it came from but Walmart carries Rival brand so that would be my guess. It's become my soaping go to cooker!

20160412_141511.jpg
 

Seawolfe

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Haunt the thrift stores, garage sales, or (surprisingly enough) hardware stores. Thats where I got my collection (yes I NEED 3 sizes of slow cooker, who doesn't?)

The ideal little one is round instead of oval for even melting, has 2 heat settings, and never ever buy one that doesn't have a removable insert.

That said, I microwave my stearic acid in little HDPE buckets (that I rest in water in pyrex like a cheap double boiler) that are only used for that purpose because melted stearic acid is impossible to clean off of anything.
 

kc1ble

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You need this little guy right here! I only use it on low and it gets plenty hot. I have to watch I don't overcook stuff with it! Not sure where it came from but Walmart carries Rival brand so that would be my guess. It's become my soaping go to cooker!
I can't seem to find this one online, do you know what the capacity is?
 

snappyllama

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I have this one I use for 1lb batches. It works fine. I normally melt oils on high and then switch to low to soap. I think I paid $15 for it as a warehouse special.

ETA: I melt my stearic separately over a double boiler. I know this one would melt those too - but I like to add stearic after I have a thin trace going so I know everything is coming together.

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B007K9XWI6/?tag=skimlinks_replacement-20
 
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Arimara

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I use the CrockPot brand I got from Target a coupld of years ago.
 

DeeAnna

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Melting stearic (or beeswax or rosin) is a pain. I melt mine in a used, well cleaned metal food can in a bath of simmering water. The can can be discarded after use rather than fuss with cleaning. Stearic melts about 180 deg F, and I think that's the upper range for crock pot temps.
 

LBussy

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I've had several of the 1-1/2 qt cookers and all would melt the SA just fine. SA melts at 158f and it seems like the smaller pots do a really good job of getting hot - certainly a better job than my 2-1/2 qt pot. I have three different 1-1/2 qt pots and never had an issue with any of them.
 
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