Semi successful corner pour - HELP!

Discussion in 'The Photo Gallery' started by Dawni, Apr 4, 2019.

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  1. Apr 6, 2019 #21

    Dawni

    Dawni

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    Ok this is gonna be one long reply lol

    No worries :) But I've noted what you said about SB and hand mixing for future soaps. Thank you.
    I wanna see! Hehehe.. I don't mind ash either. I had a black n white with green soap that had it and I liked how it seemed to emphasize the grooves of the swirls. I just wonder, is all
    I started with using % of oils, then learned about lye ratio early on and have used that since. I have been experimenting with less water, mainly in my HP soaps, to see if it helps minimize warping. I have a badly warped soap that's now cured only 6mos and I wanted to see if not having that much water to lose might help. I figure, more or less water, if at the end I still get soap, what's the harm in trying less. So far it has worked fine in most, but I think HP is a lil more forgiving and it's easier to fix mistakes, like throwing a lil extra water if it doesn't look like it wants to gel for example.
    No problem hehe I like stories from old timers :p
    Now that's something to think about. This batch did not have RBO though, but I should recheck the other ones and see if I can find a difference. Probably not, as I wouldn't have a control sample, but still, it's one thing to observe in the future.
    I unmolded after about 8hrs. I forgot to line the plastic mold and wanted to see if it stuck but it popped right off when I turned it over. I left it for another 5hrs or so before cutting. It was firmer than cheese then though.. Next try I'll leave it longer in the mold and longer to cut.

    It's summer now and always hot, and previous CPs I made did gel (I think) on their own, but you're right, maybe not this one.
    I didn't scent this soap because, after 2 prior failed attempts I did not want to waste EOs in case this failed too. In a way it did so good call I think lol. I don't have FOs. The crumbles that fell off however, when touched, crumbled even further to a coarse powder. Never had the before.
     
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  2. Apr 7, 2019 #22

    Zany_in_CO

    Zany_in_CO

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    Yes. :)
     
  3. Oct 27, 2019 #23

    penelopejane

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    @Dawni
    I have attached photos of 2 soaps I've made in the last 2 weeks. Exactly the same recipe and FO. The were, unfortunately, two differences between the soaps. The one on the left is perfect. The one on the right is dry and crumbly.
    1. To the one on the left I added the extra water to the master lye mix and let it heat up and cool down again. So I would have soaped at about 43*C (107*F). To the one on the right I added the extra water to the oils and then added the lye so it would have heated up a little more in the mold.
    2. The one on the left was poured at a light but definite trace.
    The one on the right was poured at just over emulsion.

    Both covered with a timber lid to a timber mold with a silicone liner and both were gelled. 32% lye concentration.
    Charcoal soap 2.jpg
    You soaped cool so it probably isn't an overheating issue.
    When you hand blended part and SBd the other you might have created different traces and that might have caused the different textures.

    Still no definitive answer for you, sorry.
     
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  4. Oct 27, 2019 #24

    Dawni

    Dawni

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    Ooh look at that difference!

    Thank you.. I haven't revisited these soaps in a while, but the last time I did I remember the lather was difficult to produce and the bar itself still had a powdery texture although no crumbling anymore.

    It's my only soap that looks pretty but isn't very nice to use lol
     
  5. Oct 27, 2019 #25

    dibbles

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    I missed this the first time around, but I find it interesting. It doesn't happen often, but occasionally I will have a soap that remains very soft and is crumbly. It seems to me that it happens when I soap very cool, the soap doesn't gel and I maybe don't quite get my batter to a true emulsion. Generally I use 30-33% lye concentration. The last time it happened I was also using a FO that always seems to ash.
     
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  6. Oct 28, 2019 #26

    cascarral

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    I just had this happen to me, but I used EOs, not FO! Still have no idea what went wrong, then it happened again after a couple of weeks, both had rosemary EO, AC and salt... Here are the pictures, "chalk" describes perfectly I think. https://www.soapmakingforum.com/threads/soap-soft-dry-and-crumbly.76754/
     
  7. Oct 29, 2019 #27

    penelopejane

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    I use a lot less AC than you - about 1 1/4 teaspoons ppo.
    I see a lot of other suggestions on the other thread - some conflicting. It is so tricky working out a problem when there are so many variables.

    Do you remember at what trace you poured your soap?
     
  8. Oct 29, 2019 #28

    cascarral

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    It was a very light trace! I've never learned how to identify which kind of trace it is but I always aim for a light trace in case EOs accelerate it, also I'm always trying out designs that need light trace.

    I just read your comment about temperature! I usually make bigger batches but now that I'm trying out this recipe I've been doing 400/500 grams and it cools down so so fast! The first time this happened I had a problem with one of my oils so my lye got very cold, sadly I didn't write down the soaping temp but it was at 30 celcius when I poured into the mold.

    However this second time it happened I was soaping at 39 celcius, I also isolated to prevent this from happening. The day after soaping seemed a bit too soft and I thouhgt something was weird but didn't have much trouble unmolding or even cutting the first bar, today I tried cutting the rest and it crumbled down! The color of the bar seems also too light for 1 Tbs of AC.

    Can I ask how you got such a dark bar with just 1 tsp of AC ppo?

    I'm giving it another try today without the AC, just a plain brine bar. I discounted the water to 28% because my last attempts with 33% have been too soft and I always soap with a discount. Or do you think this could be de source of the crumbling?
     
  9. Oct 30, 2019 #29

    cascarral

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    This is the picture of today's crumbling from the soap I made last week!
     

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  10. Oct 30, 2019 #30

    penelopejane

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    Try 31% lye concentration. That small difference in the amount of water really makes a difference in the recipe.

    I have been trying to standardise my measurements. I am using 1.5 tsp of AC leveled (which used to be 1.25 heaped) off with a wooden stirrer. I mix 1.5 tsp with 1.5g of water (from the recipe) and let it sit for a while. Then I SB it into the mix. If you only hand blend AC in it comes out much lighter than if you SB.

    I am currently thinking the crumbly problem has something to do with trace. I always soap at 42*C. I think the variable for me is the trace.

    What this video it might help you discover trace. Even if you get very light trace to separate colours etc you need to hand blend or SB it a bit further. You might find it a good idea to add the EO early so you can control the reaction.
     
  11. Oct 31, 2019 #31

    cascarral

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    Thanks so much for all this information! And for taking the time to share :)

    I've only used water as % of oils, would you mind explaining how does lye concentration work? I read about it but cant seem to understand. Do you think the water discount has something to do with my crumbling soap?

    I will make another soap next week and look after the trace! thank you!

    So... if we are assuming it has something to do with trace... does the high amount of soda ash has anything to do with lye not being well mixed? Are this bars safe to use?
     
  12. Nov 1, 2019 #32

    penelopejane

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    Using % lye concentration (on every soap calc) is easier to compare recipes as it clearly defines what a soap maker needs to know - the amount of lye and water in the lye-water solution. Don’t worry about understanding it just use it - or read heaps of old posts especially explanations by DeeAnna on the subject.

    I don’t think the lye concentration has much to do with the crumbly soap per se but if you are using 28% lye concentration and add an extra 1 tsp of water that can throw a recipe out. 31% lye concentratio is more forgiving with tiny miscalculations.

    I think it might be about trace so I’d watch that video a few times and really slowly SB your next batch. Wait between SB and hand stir a bit. Be really patient and make sure it’s at light but definite trace when you are about to pour. Emulsion is ok if you have to separate to add colours but then take to light trace.

    I think pouring at least at light trace and keeping it warm and going thru gel and keeping it covered either with isopropyl alcohol, Saran wrap or a tight fitting lid for at least 24hrs all prevent soda ash.

    Soda ash can be washed off or steamed off. It is unsightly (to me) but won’t harm the soap or the user. The crumbly soap isn’t soda ash.
     
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  13. Nov 4, 2019 #33

    cascarral

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    Wow! Thanks a lot for all the info :) it has been so helpful, really!

    will give it ANOTHER try tomorrow... I'm acummulating enough soap to wash my whole neighborhood!
     
  14. Nov 4, 2019 #34

    Arimara

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    I don't know about that. That charcoal soap would stain many a wash rag, judging byt the pic you shared. :)
     

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