Upscaling my recipe

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Teddy2604

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Hi everyone!

Are there any pitfalls to be aware of when upscaling soap recipes?
I have a tried and tested recipe I've used for single log moulds, and I'm considering making enough for 5 moulds at once rather than 1 at a time. I imagine this will streamline things given my base oils are the same in each soap, just with different additives.

Are there any issues with simply multiplying my lye and oil ratios by 5, separating and mixing in additives before pouring into moulds? I can't think of any but thought it prudent to ask, as if it went wrong it would be a huge waste.

Thanks for your help in advance.
 

DeeAnna

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A regular stick blender in a single batch of soap batter will mix that batter more intensely and thoroughly than using the same SB in a batch that's 5 times larger. So you may find the larger batch will be slower to reach emulsion and slower to show obvious trace. It will get there, just not as quickly.

That said, you just have to be prepared for anything -- a much larger batch will behave differently, but you will probably have to try it to learn exactly what those differences are.

Also scraping the sides of the soap pot will be important because the SB will be even less efficient than usual at mixing the ingredients clinging to the wall of the pot into the main portion of the batter.

Since you're pouring into 5 individual molds rather than one X 5 sized mold, this will avoid changes in the behavior of the soap in the mold. Soap in a large block will tend to get hotter during saponification and possibly even overheat while soap in a smaller mold will remain somewhat cooler.

I personally wouldn't just multiply all the ingredients X 5 to minimize the chance for rounding errors to creep into the numbers. I'd enter the fats into a s.oap recipe calculator and recalculate the recipe, just to be sure.
 

TheGecko

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On occasion, I get a wild hair and will pull out my dish pan (it’s plastic and only used for soap making) and make between 14 and 15 pounds of soap, depending on what molds I plan to use.

1) Don’t just multiply your recipe x 5. Put your normal size recipe into your soap calculator and resize to the total amount of oils you will need for your five mold and then print your recipe out. Then calculate your regular additives (if any) PPO and write those down.

2) Plan what you are going to do. Set out your molds and put your colorants, special additives and FOs in each mold. Designs requiring a fluid batter should be done first. Designs that can be done with a thicker trace can be left last. Pick FOs that are well-behaved. Pick designs that you are familiar with.

3) Make sure your mixing container has plenty of room. You want to be able to stick blend and stir without making a mess. I like a dish pan because if has soft rounded corners and a large flat surface making it easier to mix my batter.

4) While your hard oils are melting and your lye is cooling down, get your colorants, scents and special additives dispersed and measured out. Once you combine your oils and lye, the saponification clock as started and even the thinnest batter turns to soap.

5) Make one soap at a time. I weigh my mixing bowl, then scoop out out what batter I need with a ladle for each soap. After I’m done with soap #1, I wipe out my bowl and ladle out what I need for soap #2 and so on and so forth.

One thing I would recommend...start with a double batch, then a triple batch before going the full Monty. Make sure your recipe is going to give you the time you need to make five soaps. My recipe gives some good play time, but I really pushed it with seven soaps. Admittedly I had two small layered soaps so there was some tricky planning going on. My last two soaps were supposed to be a semi-wispy drop/chopstick swirl, but I had pushed it and I was at a medium trace. Still got a cool design.
 

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