odd reaction when adding lye...

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james_Duprie

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So I had something happen that's entirely new to me. As I was adding the lye to the oils, the mix pretty much set up - almost seized - instantly. It wasn't a full seize, just moved through trace and to a porridge-like consistency) smooth, pourable, no grain) - Kind of like cold motor oil.

The recipe is 70 oz each of coconut, peanut, and castor oil, 29.7oz lye, and 80 oz water. Pour was at 100 degrees F.

Because this was m,y first try with this recipe, I didn't do any additives.

It's in the mold now (I do large blocks, then cut them), so I'll have an idea of if it worked (at least the first read) in about a week (I cure for a week in the mold, then cut the bars and let them finish drying for another month or two).

Any thoughts on the cause or if the batch will be OK?
 

cmzaha

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Castor will acclerate trace even at 5% and high coconut oil will trace quickly. With 70 oz of each oil I can understand why it seized. I would have to question why you would use a recipe in such a large quantity. In my book, testing is much more reliable for new recipes. High Castor oil does not make a nice soap
 

james_Duprie

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I kind of thought that was the case.... This is my default batch size, and I'm experimenting with different types of oil combinations. this was just a shot in the dark - I have a tone of all of them, and don't mind if it doesn't come out well, so I figured I;d give it a shot...

I've done a bit of digging on the web, but haven't found anyplace that has summaries of what to expect with particular oils - like the fact that castor is an accelerant..... If you know of anyplace, I'd really appreciate a link..

thanks again
-James
 

The Efficacious Gentleman

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Well, you're kinda sorta posting on one right about now, fella!

Anytime you're looking at a recipe, take a couple of seconds to post it here and get some thoughts. I've seen many people save time and money by asking here before making a batch which is destined to be a poor soap. Alas I have seen so many more people only ask AFTER making a batch

Edit - and 6kg is your basic batch, including random tests? Blimey
 

james_Duprie

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ONLY when I've got way to much of something, and want to use it up..... At least for testing. Once I've got a recipe I like, that is my normal batch....

Thanks for the idea though.. next time I'm playing, I'll post here first...
 

Scooter

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If you do not mind me asking, what was the intended purpose for having so much castor oil?
 

james_Duprie

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mostly I just had a lot of all three, and wanted to see what happened. I haven't used castor in soap before, so this was pure experiment.
Other than "not being good soap" what exactly is it that makes soap with lots of castor "bad"?

-Thanks
 

james_Duprie

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once again - had it around, figured I'd try.

Once its cured, I'll post results
 

penelopejane

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mostly I just had a lot of all three, and wanted to see what happened. I haven't used castor in soap before, so this was pure experiment.
Other than "not being good soap" what exactly is it that makes soap with lots of castor "bad"?

-Thanks
Castor oil helps the bubbles to stay bubbly. Use it at 5% of the oils. At higher rates it makes a very sticky soap.

Coconut is drying for a lot of people's skin so they use it at 30% max but often more except for salt bars where you can use it at 50, 80 or 100%.
I have not heard of using peanut oil in soap but it looks like it has a short shelf life.

Here are links to two "soap making oil chart"
Google for more.

http://www.lovinsoap.com/oils-chart/

http://images.soapqueen.com.s3.amazonaws.com/GuidetoCommonSoapmakingOils_V1-00.pdf
 

Scooter

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once again - had it around, figured I'd try.

Once its cured, I'll post results
We were cross posting at the same time, so I may have deleted the post you (later) replied t. My post was redundant.

Sorry!
 

CaraBou

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Castor oil is one of the more expensive oils for me, and I'm always glad I don't need to use much. Hope you still have some left to use in the right proportion and see what it does for bubbles.

Just curious - did you add any fragrance to that batch?
 

Susie

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If the oils were old, don't be surprised if you get DOS (dreaded orange spots, AKA rancidity) rapidly.
 

james_Duprie

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Castor oil is one of the more expensive oils for me, and I'm always glad I don't need to use much. Hope you still have some left to use in the right proportion and see what it does for bubbles.

Just curious - did you add any fragrance to that batch?
No, it was an experiment (and a use-it-up type thing) so I didn't. That was actually one of the things I was hoping to see - what it came out smelling like...

Based on feedback, I was worried about how sticky it would be, so I took it out of the mold a bit early - about half as long in the mold as normal). My mold is one I made - hard maple with removable sides, and I don't line it with anything (hard maple is fairly resistant to absorption, and has close tight closed grain).

My normal process is to slide a frosting spatula down the sides of the mold, remove the sides, then flip the soap onto my cutting jig, and slice it into bars for aging/drying. The process worked fine, although the soap was a bit softer than normal (I DID take it out with only half of my normal cure time). There was some minor cracking in the top surface, but other than being a bit soft the soap is fine. It was soft enough that I could easily deform the bars if I wasn't a careful handling them - indentations from my thumb was the give away. A little extra caution, and everything was fine.

Initial impression (washing my hands after handling the soap) is that it is a pretty good soap. Its still very soft, so its characteristics may change a bit as it finishes curing, but I would consider it to be comparable to a pure olive oil soap for feel. The lather seems stronger (based on washing the mold and utensils). The scraps went together into balls very nicely - good consistency, held together nicely, and (although a bit soft) molded by hand easily.

Now all I have to do is wait a month to let them finish curing, and I can do a real evaluation...
 

shunt2011

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You won't have the full effect of what the soap will be like until it cures. I'm just amazed at the size batch you are making as a test. That's a huge waste of ingredients/money if it's a crappy soap and will likely be prone to DOS due to the peanut oil.

Hope it works for you as it's not a great recipe to begin with at all.
 

kumudini

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Most of us here wont make that soap because of what we already know, had experience with those oils. But since you have already done it,please do update here once your batch is done curing. I have used castor oil at 12% once, it made for a softer soap and had a draggy feel on the skin. it wasn't a long lasting bar either. So, I don't use it at more than 5% now, but I do use it in almost all of my soaps.
I have been wanting to use peanut oil and sesame oil in soap, as these were the cooking oils I grew up with. may be soon...
 

james_Duprie

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OK, 2 weeks into the cure, and this is looking like a great soap. Nice pale butter colored bars, hardening up nicely, no spotting yet. I couldn't resist, so I tried a bar. A little light on the lather, but feels nice. Rinses well, doesn't feel sticky. I think I like it, but I'll have to wait until I've been using it for a while to see if its too drying....
 

cherrycoke216

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I have been wanting to use peanut oil and sesame oil in soap, as these were the cooking oils I grew up with. may be soon...
Do NOT use too much sesame oil in soap! Or you'll smell like the Chinese sesame oil chicken soup...after your shower! Ask me how I know...

( coz you said the cooking oil, I supposed you mean roasted sesame oil...not cosmetic deodorized one)
 

dixiedragon

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I put toasted sesame seed oil in my hummus instead of olive oil and it is amazing! I dont' use tahini b/c it's too much like peanut butter to me and then I want peanut butter when I eat the hummus.
 

cherrycoke216

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I put toasted sesame seed oil in my hummus instead of olive oil and it is amazing! I dont' use tahini b/c it's too much like peanut butter to me and then I want peanut butter when I eat the hummus.

Sorry for the digress, but this sounds YUM!!!!!! I'm drooling all over here like a puppy now... :p
 

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