Trying to diagnose what went weird with first soap batch

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Red Osier

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No buck but 30 ounces of rendered tallow that was run through a cloth diaper and is clean and does not smell. 250 degrees and I stopped before browning cause it was time to hunt and so I will water bath the rest and might get a few more ounces. I will probably stretch it and use it in small amounts as a hardener rather then make high deer content soap. Wish I had some more chicken fat to use with it.

I should do better with your impute so far come next season. I wish I could return the favor and answer your questions but I am not qualified. Thanks for your response.
gww

@gww I’m glad you have gotten something of value to you from my posts! 😊

I hope the rendering finishes well, and I’ll look for posts of your soaps!
 

TheGecko

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Thanks @TheGecko!

And I believe you, but my confusion shows my inexperience! How do I ‘soap’ at a temperature where my fats are hard solid masses? I had though I at least had to keep them liquid long enough to mix them!

You can’t of course. Unless you are making soap in a cold environment with small amounts, it’s going to take a bit of time for you hard oils/butters/fats to become “hard solid mass” again and you’ll be long done making your soap before that happens. Once you fats and lye solution have been emulsified and/or you reach trace…your batter is going to start to thicken, but that isn’t your fats resolidifying…that’s the chemical process of saponification,
 

Red Osier

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Yes, yes, and yes. FWIW, I've not added sugar water to rebatch but my guess is that it would act as a solvent to help liquify everything. Let us know how it turns out.

Thanks @AliOop!

I minced it all up super fine this evening (then had to hide it from the cat…. aren’t I glad it was fully reacted!!), except for one tiny 1.5oz bar I was able to carve out of the mess, and will put it in to bake in the morning…

I tucked the little bar out of the way and will check on its performance around the holidays next month.

You can’t of course. Unless you are making soap in a cold environment with small amounts, it’s going to take a bit of time for you hard oils/butters/fats to become “hard solid mass” again and you’ll be long done making your soap before that happens. Once you fats and lye solution have been emulsified and/or you reach trace…your batter is going to start to thicken, but that isn’t your fats resolidifying…that’s the chemical process of saponification,

Ah! Gotcha @TheGecko, that makes sense.

I’ll have to pay more careful attention to how quickly this stuff resolidifies in room temperature….

Thanks for clearing up my confusion!
 

Red Osier

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Yes, yes, and yes. FWIW, I've not added sugar water to rebatch but my guess is that it would act as a solvent to help liquify everything. Let us know how it turns out.


So here we go:

Moving very slow today… first head cold in 21 months. Blech. But it means I’m home, not working.

It also means no distilled water, and I’m using an old spring scale. I cross my fingers, but I’m taking heart from the injunction that you can’t add *too much* water, and that since my soap is already ripe for DOS, impurities in the water during remelt won’t make a huge difference.

Here is how my little loaf looked after mincing:
678346F5-ADB4-4B34-A734-83EDEEC63031.jpeg
And my tiny little bar!

I made a 4oz solution of water and honey. I had a brain fog moment and forgot to cut my honey by half, so we’ll see. It was supposed to be at 5% of fat…

I only needed about 3oz of solution to moisten it until it looked like the dough when I make oatcakes:
7032DDE2-A0B8-4DA1-9E34-E593451BABE9.jpeg

I packed it into my little silicon loaf pans:
1D551AD3-7D79-4C2D-B597-51191D22AADD.jpeg
Onto one tray, and covered by a second, into the oven at 250F for 60min….

So here is what they looked like after 60min and a quick stir, then back in for 5….

AB258645-E31D-4F85-A5E0-58DA14F74F99.jpeg
They actually foamed up and stuck to the lid, which I scraped off and mixed back in (you can see the last bit in the centre of the top one).

They are certainly molten, and very homogenous, but they are foamy!!

They are out and cooling now….
 
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As you have discovered, 250F is good for melting, but a bit too hot for sustained exposure. Next time, check it every 15 minutes, and as soon as you can stir it into something rather homogenous, it can be removed from the heat. Fortunately, it looks like you got it all under control and will end up with some decent soap.
 

Red Osier

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As you have discovered, 250F is good for melting, but a bit too hot for sustained exposure. Next time, check it every 15 minutes, and as soon as you can stir it into something rather homogenous, it can be removed from the heat. Fortunately, it looks like you got it all under control and will end up with some decent soap.

Thanks @AliOop! I really appreciate the vote of confidence. 😊

And yes, lesson learned, 250F is good for melting but not holding. I wonder… is the choice of 250F a speed thing? If I was comfortable with a longer wait, could I do this at a lower set point?


So….

Here is what they looked like 5min out of the oven:
CBD9A323-E5A1-4077-8674-355F8257CC33.jpeg

You’ll note I was poking…. I managed to keep my hands off one, at least!

The bottom one had a good amount of translucent molten soap under the foam. I tried poking it around a bit to incorporate, and had yet another reminder of how quick this batch sets up.

Here they are unmolded and sliced:

785153D9-8FF8-4BA9-AAD2-ED3D5258303B.jpeg

Certainly the untouched one has a smoother consistency throughout, but the foaminess I mentioned is the bulk of both soaps.

930FE408-B08C-460B-B6B9-30DCDEA97F9F.jpeg

They are certainly much softer than the first go round. Not surprising with the amount of water and honey added. I will set them to dry and see how they develop. There is the ever so slightest of suggestion that they may be sticky or tacky - we shall see.

The temperature and foaming up suggest (correct me here if needed, guys!) that the honey got a bit overheated, as does the scent. However, the soap was faintly acrid before and now smells deliciously of toasted honey….. 😋
 

gww

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Every soap I have warmed in the microwave foams. It is not just your soap or recipe. I watch it while heating and stop and stir at start of foaming to keep it as smooth as possible. I find it hard to work with it fast enough before it gets hard again. I have not did it but a very few times though.
Cheers
gww
 
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Yup, foam happens during rebatching. Good job on fixing the smell and the looks, too. If you can have a fan blowing on it, that will help with drying the soap out sooner, but be prepared to be patient with all that extra water.
 

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