Ugh, another zap test question, Sorry!!

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HoiPoloi

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I really want to understand the zap test. I get the theory of "if it zaps you, like a battery it's not done" and "if it doesn't, should be ok" (having older brothers, I fell for the, Hey put this to your tongue trick when I was young. You don't forget that!

I swear to holy heaven I think my tongue is broken. I have a batch that I made six weeks ago, I'm *pretty sure* I messed it up, and I get no zap. I guess my bizarre question is, are there levels of zap or is it really just "YIKES that hurt". I swear, I've now been licking soap for an hour, and can't get the feel for it.
 

kchaystack

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Not really. You know when you get zapped.

How do you think you 'messed up'

Can you give us your recipe in weights?
 

galaxyMLP

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At 6 weeks old, you'd have to mess up pretty badly to get zapped. Even soaps that are negatively superfated will not zap after a long enough amount of time (and with enough water in the recipe). Take a look at the 40% lye excess Castile thread. It's really interesting.

Zap is very obvious. I've never stuck my tongue to a battery so I can't compare it. But I've been zapped many times (from testing HP soap too early). The first time I did it, I actually ended up burning my tongue so just make sure you do it with a tiny piece. However, you'll probably not experience zap if you do CP soap unless you zap test within a few hours of making your soap or really make a very big mistake with a big water discount.
 

HoiPoloi

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So I HP more than I CP but this was a CP batch, super basic, no EO, I added 2 tsp of activated charcoal at trace. I *think* I may have added more lye than needed, it was curing all weird (looked to liquid on top, ended with soda ash) I sort of remember taring my scale when measuring the lye but after I made the soap I was thinking, did I really see it tare to zero?

Olive 17
Palm 8
Coco 6
Castor 1.5
water 12.3
lye 4.49

Wanted to test out using activated charcoal for my nephew who is suffering from newly teenaged acne!! LOL!!!

If I taste this darn soap one more time, I might just eat it. Thanks!
if you didn't get tricked into the battery thing when you were younger, certainly don't do it now!! LOL!! I started to read some of the posts you suggested, thanks!!! I'll keep reading!!
 
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DeeAnna

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I can't speak for anyone else, but I have convinced myself at times that I did something wrong or forgot something important but I really, honestly didn't. Go figure. :think:

If you didn't tare your scale to zero out the container weight, I would think you probably weighed out LESS lye than you should have rather than too much lye. That would give you too much superfat and that would make it even less likely you'd get a zap.

To reduce the chance of ash, try soaping with less water. (It looks like you're using the default "38% water as % of oils" setting.) Switch to using lye concentration and try a lye concentration of 30% and see how that works for you. Many soapers use 30% to 33% lye concentration (and even higher) with good results.
 
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kchaystack

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is that coconut oil or cocoa butter?

if it is coconut, your amounts look fine for a 5% superfat.

Like galaxy says, a long cure can take care of an amount of lye excess. If it was lye heavy tho, it won't have any superfat now - and that might be fairly stripping on the skin.

I would try it out - first on my hands, then on my arms, and them maybe try it on my face if my hands and arms do not dry out and itch.
 

HoiPoloi

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My concern was that I had something else on the scale before (my water) and then switched to measuring the lye and didn't tare it out. OK, maybe I am perfect and did nothing wrong. HAAHA!! So kidding, so not perfect!!!! Maybe my tongue is broken. Too many jalapenos in college those oh so many years ago. LOL!! Thanks, I will try the water at a lower % next time and see what happens! Should have paid attention in chemistry class. darn.
yes, sorry, it was coconut oil (76), and I will wait another week and then test is out on myself. Don't want to upset the new teenager any more than he already is. HA!!!!
 
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