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not_ally

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Hello all,

Just got some PKO flakes from WSP, and have never used them before. I was going to sub them for CO in a recipe in which I usually use CO at 20%. However, most people seem to mix PKO w/CO rather than using it by itself. Also, BB recommends using theirs at a 15% max in recipes.

Any reason to blend w/CO rather than going whole hog? I was hoping to try the same recipe in two batches, using 20% CO in one and 20% PKO in the other so I could see what the difference is in use, but will refrain if it makes crappy soap.
 

snappyllama

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I've done a little playing around with CO/PKO ratio. This is just what I've noticed, you might have different results.

5% PKO 15% CO - not that different feeling than my normal 20% CO recipe
10% PKO 10% CO - nice bubbles, not drying, not waxy
15% PKO 5% CO - kinda waxy feeling

Now I stick with a 50/50 split. :)
 

doriettefarm

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My skin seems to prefer PKO over CO. I've used PKO (regular & hydrogenated) at 15-20% without noticing the waxy feeling snappy reported. Maybe it's just a me vs CO thing . . . PKO and babassu don't give me any problems. I say experiment away and see how your skin reacts. I do tend to use plenty of lard/tallow in my recipes along with 10% castor in pretty much every batch if that helps you balance your recipe at all.
 

newbie

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I wasn't certain what the changes would be for trace and for the finished soap if I sub'ed all PKO for CO. PKO is more brittle than CO so I never tried a full swap out. I somehow, sometime bought a 50# box of PKO flakes and had to start using them up so I use them for up 10-25% of my CO amount, just to use them up. Some say you get better lather if you use CO, PKO and castor oil together in any amounts. Not sure if it's true though.
 
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not_ally

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Hm, interesting. Thanks for your thoughts. Doriette, this recipe sounds sort of like yours, 72% lard, 20% coconut (usually), 8% castor. I had read that PKO sped trace some, but I figured that with so much lard it would be OK, especially if I did not swirl or did a simple one. Am curious to see the result now, wish I didn't have to wait a month!
 

Obsidian

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I've replaced all the CO in my recipe with PK flakes. I really didn't notice much difference with trace and I do like it a bit better then coconut. I can't really put my finger on what makes it different, maybe the bars are a bit waxier and a little less harsh.

I do know that 100% PK bars aren't very good, they are so hard they don't lather well. I think my max was 25%. I've recently found I really like 50/50 CO/OO (10% SF) but the bars seem a but too soluble, I wonder if PK would make a harder bar.
 

shunt2011

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I use both in my recipes. Pretty much 50/50. I like the combination of the two together.
 

not_ally

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I did a little more searching on this and found some interesting stuff, mostly on this site, of course. Irish Lass suggested not soaping below 110 w/PKOF blends because they increase the possibility of false trace (makes sense b/c the melting pt is 102), although many people don't seem to have trouble soaping at lower temps depending on their oil mix composition. Also, you guys that prefer to blend CO and PKOF seem to be in the majority, there seems to be a general feeling that blending the two produces a synergy that is good.

The second thing, which was really interesting - and contra to most stuff I read about pko v. pko flakes, which suggested that they were interchangeable in use - was that PKOFs have a substantially higher stearic acid percentage than both CO and PKO. Here's the post:

http://www.soapmakingforum.com/showthread.php?t=48823&highlight=palm+kernel

I was not able to find a chart that set out a fatty acid profile for PKOF, which have to be hydrogenated to get them solid, although there are lots of FA breakdowns for PKO and CO. But I did find references to the fact that the process of hydrogenation results in the production of additional stearic acid, so it makes sense that PKOF speeds trace more than, and makes soap harder than, both CO and PKO.

So now I am going to make THREE batches, one 20% PKOF, one 10% of each of PKOF and CO, and one 20% CO. And soap at 110! I never thought that soapmaking would make me interested in chemistry, which I have assiduously avoided all my life :)
 
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kumudini

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Hello all,

Just got some PKO flakes from WSP, and have never used them before. I was going to sub them for CO in a recipe in which I usually use CO at 20%. However, most people seem to mix PKO w/CO rather than using it by itself. Also, BB recommends using theirs at a 15% max in recipes.

Any reason to blend w/CO rather than going whole hog? I was hoping to try the same recipe in two batches, using 20% CO in one and 20% PKO in the other so I could see what the difference is in use, but will refrain if it makes crappy soap.
I have them too not_ally, but I use them very sparingly, like under 3%. I don't know if you've noticed that soap calc has the PKO and PKOF listed separately. While PKO is very similar to CO, PKOF gives much higher cleansing and hardness values. I never questioned soap calc on that, meaning I still go by those numbers and keep my cleanse value under 15 and hardness below 45. I really don't know where the difference comes from but I do believe PKO and PKOF are different.
ETA: may be PKOF acts more like SA??
Edit#2: I have soap calc app on my pad and if I just plug in numbers for one oil it gives me values for that single oil and in the details section it gives the FA breakdown. Interestingly, it tells me it has some 220+ % Laurie acid and very little SA. Now I'm just like you know, scratching my head,lol
 
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not_ally

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V, thank you for the tip on getting the single oil fatty acid breakdown on SoapCalc. I knew that I could put PKO and PKOF in separately, but I didn't realize you get separate FA values for single oils by clicking on one and looking at that column, and it was really interesting.

It confirmed the differences b/c PKOF and CO/PKO for me, especially w/r/t stearic and oleic acid values. PKO is much higher in stearic - 16, as compared to 2 and 3, respectively for PKO and CO. And lower in oleic, 4 as compared to 15 and 8, respectively. Cool!

Although it just occured to me, I still don't really what that means b/c I don't know what the range of values on the scale is - ie; 16 compared to 2 and 3 out of what maximum value? If 100, the difference b/w that and 2 and 3 is much less substantial than, eg, if the scale went from 0-20.
 
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kumudini

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Well, I said little SA comparing it to the given value for LA, which is 220+. Looks like out of 300. Now, why would soap calc give us values out of 300 while percentages are well per 100. I need to read more about the flakes, sometime soon.
 

topofmurrayhill

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Although it just occured to me, I still don't really what that means b/c I don't know what the range of values on the scale is - ie; 16 compared to 2 and 3 out of what maximum value? If 100, the difference b/w that and 2 and 3 is much less substantial than, eg, if the scale went from 0-20.
Those are percentages. For each oil, the fatty acids add up to 100% or a little less. The missing percentage points can be less common fatty acids and other stuff.

In the hydrogenation process, linoleic is converted to oleic and oleic is converted to stearic -- the idea being to solidify the oil at a given temperature and increase its stability. CO 76 becomes CO 92 and PKO becomes PKO flakes.

Technically, linoleic is also converted to trans-oleic, which has the same chemical formula as oleic but isn't good for your body when you consume hydrogenated oils.
 

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