Salt bar question(s)

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Guspuppy

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When making a large batch of salt bars, how do you figure out by how much to reduce the oil amount in the recipe to account for the salt volume, so that it all fits into your mold? My first salt bars I used 75% salt and used a cardboard mold for 40 oz oils. Luckily the mold was much larger than my planned volume because after adding the salt it filled it right to the top, with some bowing out of the sides. Now I want to make an extra large batch of salt bars (148 oz oils) but I can't decide how small to make my oil amount so the whole thing fits in the new box once salt is added. And additionally, do I have to worry about volcanoing or anything making that large a batch of 100% CO soap? Will I still be able to cut it in just a few hours?
Thanks!
 

TeresaT

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I've only done salt bars once and used individual molds, so this isn't going to solve your problem or even answer your question. This is just a suggestion. Why not have a second mold ready for the extra batter? I normally do that for my batches of soap because, depending on which mold I use, my 1000 grams of oils is either too much, not quite enough or just right. (It's the three bears of soaping.) I like to have a few single molds, an 11 oz loaf mold and a 1 pound square mold handy for any extra batter. I'm bound to use at least one of them. Since my single molds are pringles singles containers, they don't need any special treatment and the other two are Soaper's Choice silicone molds. Again, no special treatment needed for those. Just a suggestion. (BTW: You are really brave to not use individual molds for salt bars. I would never try that. Hats off to you!!)
 

shunt2011

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I make five lb loaf molds and use 53 oz do oils with 24 oz salt. I don't do 100% Co but use 80% with 15 avocado and 5% castor. I usually have a bit extra for individual molds I keep for personal use. I cut them at about 3 hours while still hot so use gloves. No problems itch volcanos.
 

cmzaha

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My normal batches use 60 oz oils. For salt bars I multiply 60 x .90 = 54 oz of oil. Using 100% salt will pile them up higher in the mold which I like for salt bars, since I want bigger bars. Salt bars, even though very hard, are more soluble than regular cp soap, so to get the same longevity out of a salt bar I make them a little larger.
 

makemineirish

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When making a large batch of salt bars, how do you figure out by how much to reduce the oil amount in the recipe to account for the salt volume, so that it all fits into your mold?
Depending on the grain size and content of your salt, it has a completely different density than mine. It is one of the reasons that I prefer to cook/bake by weight, rather than volume. All you need to do is measure a set amount of the salt that you are using and weigh it to figure out a weight/volume conversion factor.

I am too lazy to go grab mine, but a quick online search stated that Morton's Table Salt is 304g/cup (10.72oz). Alternatively, you could express this to mean that each pound of salt occupies a volume of 1.49 cups. I'm just going to round that of to 1.5 to make the math easy.

That means that if you are making 75% salt bars...you are planning to use 0.75 pounds of salt for each pound of oil. That translates to an added volume of 1.125 cups (or 9 fluid ounces) of salt for each pound of oils.

Does that make sense?

I cannot help with the other questions as I do not make batches that large...ever:)
 

cmzaha

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Depending on the grain size and content of your salt, it has a completely different density than mine. It is one of the reasons that I prefer to cook/bake by weight, rather than volume. All you need to do is measure a set amount of the salt that you are using and weigh it to figure out a weight/volume conversion factor.

I am too lazy to go grab mine, but a quick online search stated that Morton's Table Salt is 304g/cup (10.72oz). Alternatively, you could express this to mean that each pound of salt occupies a volume of 1.49 cups. I'm just going to round that of to 1.5 to make the math easy.

That means that if you are making 75% salt bars...you are planning to use 0.75 pounds of salt for each pound of oil. That translates to an added volume of 1.125 cups (or 9 fluid ounces) of salt for each pound of oils.

Does that make sense?

I cannot help with the other questions as I do not make batches that large...ever:)
I tried for a long time to figure out the exact formula as per weight and volume of salt but I will say it does not work for me. My 100% fine grade salt only takes up around 10% of the volume in my mold. I am not great at math, but in the course of 7 yrs making salt bars I finally determined I only deduct around 10% from my oils and this is using equal parts 100% salt.
 

Guspuppy

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Thanks for the help everyone!! I just sent in a big order of EO's so I'll be waiting for those before I make any soap. I'll ponder it some more but I think I decided that subtracting an eighth of the oil should leave enough room for salt. Also this is to make a 3" wide bar, I discovered in the course of my latest soaps that I really prefer bigger bars. But if they should end up less wide due to less overall volume then it'll still be fine. :)
 

cmzaha

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Thanks for the help everyone!! I just sent in a big order of EO's so I'll be waiting for those before I make any soap. I'll ponder it some more but I think I decided that subtracting an eighth of the oil should leave enough room for salt. Also this is to make a 3" wide bar, I discovered in the course of my latest soaps that I really prefer bigger bars. But if they should end up less wide due to less overall volume then it'll still be fine. :)
Either do as Obsidian mentioned or subtract 10% of your oil if you know what your mold normally holds. If you use less than 100% salt I would go with the full amount of oils and have some individual molds in case of overpour. Again my 10% is based on 100% oil and of course will also depend on your water percentage. Mine is based on a 29% Lye Concentration or 2.4:1 water:lye Ratio
After making a few batches you will know for sure how much for per your recipe
 
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makemineirish

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I tried for a long time to figure out the exact formula as per weight and volume of salt but I will say it does not work for me. My 100% fine grade salt only takes up around 10% of the volume in my mold. I am not great at math, but in the course of 7 yrs making salt bars I finally determined I only deduct around 10% from my oils and this is using equal parts 100% salt.
My previously stated method is an estimate that fails to account for the air spaces in the salt. It is just a rough estimate to ensure that the mold size is adequate. If I were wanted to get determine an exact dimension, I would try starting with the density of salt to reach a weight/volume number. Math people, please double-check me:think:
 

Marshall

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Somewhat related question if I may?
We speak of making adjustments for the salt content to fit specific mold sizes, in making those adjustments are you also adjusting you FO percentages?
Do you still calculate your FO volume based upon your total oil weight or do you also take into account the salt volume/weight?

Thanks!
 

shunt2011

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Somewhat related question if I may?
We speak of making adjustments for the salt content to fit specific mold sizes, in making those adjustments are you also adjusting you FO percentages?
Do you still calculate your FO volume based upon your total oil weight or do you also take into account the salt volume/weight?

Thanks!
I generally calculate my FO amount based on the oil weight. However, I also pretty much use 1 oz. ppo. Be sure to check the IFRA usage rates for each particular one you use though. Some are lower. I don't use low usage rate FO's in my salt bars.
 

dixiedragon

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That's a very good question! I calculate mine based on the oil weight. But I also wonder should we count the salt into that as far as FO use goes? I scent my salt bars with 1 oz fragrance PPO, unless that is unsafe.
 

cmzaha

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I figure fo at 7% of my oils, especially if it is a light fo. Salt has a way of gobbling up the fragrance with long cures. I am the rebel that does not take IFRA recommendations as set in stone. Soap is a wash-off. Until FDA says I can't I will... :) I do respect FDA's regulated EO's
 

Marshall

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Thanks to all for the input, it seems that the consensus is 6 to 7 PPO. Since the overwhelming majority of my soap never leaves my home and we all seem to like a fairly strong scented soap I think I take a walk on the wild side with Carolyn Z and see how we do with 7%.

You have taken me one step closer to this weekends project!

Thanks again and have a great day!
 

cmzaha

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Thanks to all for the input, it seems that the consensus is 6 to 7 PPO. Since the overwhelming majority of my soap never leaves my home and we all seem to like a fairly strong scented soap I think I take a walk on the wild side with Carolyn Z and see how we do with 7%.

You have taken me one step closer to this weekends project!

Thanks again and have a great day!
I do sell and have never had a problem or complaint. Go for it, you will be much happier than having a batch of salt bars that smell like salt!! BTW Dragons blood is wonderful in salt bars!
 

Guspuppy

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I never thought of taking into account the salt content for FO! I'm wondering if my Yuzu FO I used in my last batch will fade, I only used about .5 oz ppo, and that was before (75%) salt. My last salt bars I used 1 oz cedar EO in 40 oz oils and it smells wonderful still, but that was not an FO.... I'll be very sad if the Yuzu fades as I dearly love it!!
 

shunt2011

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I've found that if I don't use 1 oz ppo they have a tendency to fade quite a bit. I only use 30-40% salt. I've also used more for light scents.
 

Guspuppy

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I've been going lighter because I used 1 oz PPO with Lily of the Valley FO in one of my first tries and it smelled up the house for months. I thought it was way too much. Now, however, it's almost completely faded, and I only made it in April. AND I didn't realize it had faded so badly because once summer hit I moved all my soaps to the basement where there is a dehumidifier for curing, and I hadn't used the LoV soap in a few months. I just smelled one the other day when I took the Yuzu down to cure and realized the scent was gone. I'm going to miss the Yuzu! Better start using it early, maybe next month. :mrgreen:
 

sudsy_kiwi

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I've been finding similar lately, my salt bars don't seem to be holding their fragrance as long as non-salt bars
 

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