Plans for DIY Soaping Equipment?

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BrewerGeorge

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Can anybody point me toward links detailing plans to build soaping equipment? I especially want to build some racks for curing soap because I can't find anything tall enough for my typical bars. I built my own mold and cutting guide, but I've already realized that the cutter has some shortcomings, and I'd like to see others' ideas before I make that mistake again.

As a parallel discussion, what in your opinion are good characteristics for drying racks?

My initial ideas are:
Wood or bamboo
Free flowing air
Stackable
Adjustable height
Trays sized to hold the output of my mold - 12 bars - on one tray
What else?
 

Susie

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If you Google "vegetable rack", there are a plethora of photos available. The needs of vegetables and soaps are so similar, that it is a good reference. I am going to have my hubby help me make one as soon as we get a couple of days off together.
 

commoncenz

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If you make your trays sized to fit only one batch of soap each, you will find yourself wishing that you had at least doubled it. To paraphrase: "I've been curing space poor and curing space rich .... I prefer rich." By that I mean, it's probably better to have a little more space than you need available at any time than to go on a soaping spree and find that you've run out of space to cure your soap.

Edit: The above is "space permitting" of course.
 

gigisiguenza

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If you Google "vegetable rack", there are a plethora of photos available. The needs of vegetables and soaps are so similar, that it is a good reference. I am going to have my hubby help me make one as soon as we get a couple of days off together.
I hadn't thought of that Susie, TY :)
 

BrewerGeorge

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Well, after doing a quicky design sketch and pricing materials, I found again that I cannot compete with mass produced stuff from China. So I ended up buying this from Lowes hardware store.

I bought two 30" tall by 24" wide by 14" deep, 3-shelf units and used all six shelves on a single set of legs so I have five spaces, each about 5" tall and the top. The shelves are covered with 12 pieces of plastic canvas from the craft store to keep the soap off the metal racks. Total cost was $43 - $18 for each shelf (with veteran's discount) and $7 for the plastic canvas.

It will hold a ridiculous amount of soap, too. My typical loaf mold makes twelve one-inch thick, 3.75" long, and however tall the ingredients reach typically about 3". Each shelf will hold 3 batches without much crowding and I can fit 4 batches if I stand them carefully. Even if I reserve the top shelf for equipment, which seems likely, I'll have more capacity that I'll fill for a while.

 

nsmar4211

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And in two months you'll be making rack #2 :).

Been eyeing doing this myself for a while....now I'll have to check lowes!
 

gigisiguenza

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Well, after doing a quicky design sketch and pricing materials, I found again that I cannot compete with mass produced stuff from China. So I ended up buying this from Lowes hardware store.

I bought two 30" tall by 24" wide by 14" deep, 3-shelf units and used all six shelves on a single set of legs so I have five spaces, each about 5" tall and the top. The shelves are covered with 12 pieces of plastic canvas from the craft store to keep the soap off the metal racks. Total cost was $43 - $18 for each shelf (with veteran's discount) and $7 for the plastic canvas.

It will hold a ridiculous amount of soap, too. My typical loaf mold makes twelve one-inch thick, 3.75" long, and however tall the ingredients reach typically about 3". Each shelf will hold 3 batches without much crowding and I can fit 4 batches if I stand them carefully. Even if I reserve the top shelf for equipment, which seems likely, I'll have more capacity that I'll fill for a while.

I've been eying similar shelves. And I never would have thought to use plastic canvas, great idea!
 

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