What would you do with this disaster? (100% canola) Still soft and ugly after 48 hours.

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saddigilmore

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So I wanted to test out 100% canola soap out of pure curiousity, and it did turn out terribly. I thought it was safe to unmold after 48 hours. Boy, was I wrong. It's amazing how much differently even just another 5% of a hard oil changes the consistency, unmold, and cut times...

I'm letting it sit like this to harden, the top 4/5ths are hard, the bottom was all mangled up.

I guess it would make most sense to just let it sit for another 24 hrs, and then cut it when it's harder..
.
but I have to leave here today for a few days :(

I either have to cut what I can in 5 hours from now, and hope it's hard enough to do so....... or just leave it as is in this ugly block, and deal with it next week (sounds like a rebatch, i don't think i can cut a rock hard soap after a week, right?)

Should I just shave/cut off the ugly bits, and cut/salvage what I can in it's semi-soft (hopefully harder than now) condition, and have a useable but ugly 100% canola soap in a few months? Or should I rebatch this entire thing into something that would look better, and feel better to use?

What would you all do? thanks for the advice.
 

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earlene

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My first 100% Olive Oil Castile soap was in the mold for a full week before it was firm enough to come out, and then I waited another few hours to a day before cutting it... So it is possible that your 100% Canola soap may well be NOT rock hard in a week. However it may also be firmer. It depends.

It really depends on other factors. What was your water to lye ratio or lye concentration? That was part of the determining factor in my case I mention above. I used the soapcalc default settings which puts the water to lye ratio at 2.95:1 or 25% lye concentration. That's a lot of water! Another factor for me was the mold I used, which was a plastic ice cream container, with a lid, so it was designed to contain fluid. And I did not add anything else other than oil, lye and water. No salt or sodium lactate or fragrance. Nothing else that could have impacted it.

Now if you used soapcalc and used the default settings, then that was 'water as 38% of oils', which is way too much water for this an all soft oil soap, in my experience. They tend to take a lot longer to set up and be ready to cut.

So, what was the complete recipe? 5% SF, 38% water to oils? or 25% lye concentration? or water to lye ratio 3:1? or something different? 24 ounces of Canola? or 24 ounces of High Oleic Canola? (recipe changes slightly for which type of Canola) Did you add anything else (additives)? Salt? Sodium Lactate? Was youf lye solution made with water or a water substitute? How warm or cool did you soap? Did you let your lye solution cool overnight or was it warm? Do you know the temperature at which you soaped or can you guesstimate based on touch or how long the ingredients sat out before you started?

What type of mold? Wooden with silicone liner? Plastic drawer organizer? Cardboard box lined with freezer paper? The mold can make a difference in how long a soap is ready to take out.

So many things play a part in how fast a soap is ready to unmold and then be ready to cut. Some soaps are not ready to cut immediately after taken out of the mold, for reasons I mentioned above. Some are ready to unmold and cut in 2 hours. There are many factors and the recipe is only a part of that.
 

saddigilmore

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So, what was the complete recipe? 5% SF, 38% water to oils? or 25% lye concentration? or water to lye ratio 3:1? or something different? 24 ounces of Canola? or 24 ounces of High Oleic Canola? (recipe changes slightly for which type of Canola) Did you add anything else (additives)? Salt? Sodium Lactate? Was youf lye solution made with water or a water substitute? How warm or cool did you soap? Did you let your lye solution cool overnight or was it warm? Do you know the temperature at which you soaped or can you guesstimate based on touch or how long the ingredients sat out before you started?
0% SF, 37% lye concentraion,plain water, plain canola, salt @ 1tsp PPO, I didn't use my thermometer, but it was hot.

Setting 1 on my hob melts my oils, and I've been pouring in the lye solution when it's.... hot. I don't know. thermometer is next on the buy list lol.

What type of mold?
A milk carton....

I think that the moving/changing shape of the milk carton, due to my sloppiness, and small workspaces, and my inablility to resist poking the carton to see if it's firm enough to unmold... when it was still REALLY soft.... probably contributed to this mess.

I'm thinking I should redo this experiment with my good silicone molds, so that I don't get bad results because of a flimsy walled container.... :p

Might also be worth CPOPing something this soft, right?

So it is possible that your 100% Canola soap may well be NOT rock hard in a week
I'm gonna leave it as it is and see what it looks like in a week, and hope it firms up enough to cut, and it isn't TOO firm! thank you
 
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earlene

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Milk cartons are designed to hold in liquid, so a well contained (closed or covered in some way) milk carton will keep the soap wet longer than molds that allow for at least a little air in (like wood & even silicone), so that's part of it.

Was it a half-gallon or a quart sized milk carton? Or perhaps a short & squat pint? Your photo makes me think it was not a quart because the soap is squarish, but not tall enough to be a full half-gallon carton. That probably doesn't matter, though. What matters is what was your total batch size? Is it 500 grams of oil and about 680 grams total batch size? If so, did you add insulation to encourage gel? Sometimes gel isn't reached even when soaping hot with an all liquid soap, particularly if it is a small amount of soap.

In spite of the high heat and the salt, even plain Canola is still high in Oleic acid, has so little palmitic & stearic acids that it's going to take longer to harden, with a 1.7:1 water to lye ratio. The mold most probably contributed.

You could still CPOP it (as is), to encourage gel, which speeds the hardening of the soap.

And one other thing regarding what to do since you are traveling today. I am a traveler, who also soaps while traveling. I normally do the majority of my traveling by car, so this may or may not be viable for you, depending on your mode of travel. On more than one occassion I have packed soap into my car to cut later. A benefit of packing a semi-hard molded soap into the trunk of my car and driving a few hundred miles to my next destination, is that the sun beats down on the metal trunk, thus heating the contents & CPOPing the soap for me, thus encouraging gel. It makes for a soap ready to cut sooner. If that's works for you, I say give it a try. Just pop that soap into a similar sized box (build it yourself with a cardboard box, some tape and scissors) and wrap it with plastic wrap or freezer paper to prevent any leaks (which are unlikely to occur, but better safe...) and then a towel and pop it into a corner in the trunk of your car. Don't forget to bring a pastry cutter or knife and a plastic placemat or cutting board. That's all you need. Oh, and something to later wrap the cut bars, like brown grocery bag paper or the like. This takes up little space in your car.

But if you're going to fly or take a train or bus, it can be a bit more of an ordeal, so if so, I'd CPOP now and see if that helps today. If it's still too soft before you leave, then, if it were me, I'd wrap it in plastic wrap tightly to keep out the air and leave it until returning home. Then it can't get rock hard while you are gone, and upon your return you can unwrap and either cut then, or let it sit out in the air to dry a bit more and cut later.

Wrapping a block of new soap in Saran wrap is something I have done for months, in fact, and was still able to cut the soap without difficulty. AND the soap did not go rancid or get DOS or anything adverse. So I know this works.
 

Zany_in_CO

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My first 100% Olive Oil Castile soap was in the mold for a full week before it was firm enough to come out, and then I waited another few hours to a day before cutting it... So it is possible that your 100% Canola soap may well be NOT rock hard in a week.
That was my first experience too. One week in the mold; another week unmolded before cutting. I would do nothing. Don't worry about it while you're away. It will do its thing until you can get back to it. @earlene's advice is well-taken. :thumbs:
 

Obsidian

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I've made 100% canola before. I don't remember how long before I could cut but I do remember it had horrible DOS within a month and I had to throw the whole batch out.

If you want to try a single oil soap besides olive, try HO safflower. I like it a lot more then olive and it didn't go bad.
 

ResolvableOwl

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@saddigilmore
Any news on this? Woefully, I had overlooked the original discussion, I'm curious about its state, and I have a few suggestions myself…
First off, for high-canola soap (with neither antioxidants nor chelators), DOS is a real threat. Whatever you do, keep a small bit of this soap for months…years to remind yourself why you should care about rancidity. Even if the soap hardens up decently, it won't be great (but in the end, that was your intention and expectation).
You can re-/upcycle it with a mixed (“hybrid”) rebatch-HP process: Grate up the canola soap and moisten them. Make a similar amount of regular batter from hard oils (palm/lard/cocoa/…, coconut, maybe also castor) but without soft oils, add chelators and ROE if at hand, and stir in the canola shreds. Put on a stovetop/crockpot and let it react through.
Another approach is salting out: combine the shreds together with other (hard) soap shreds in hot water, and add salt to precipitate the now mixed soaps. (Of course, when you have such hard soap shreds at hand, a regular (pot or oven) rebatch would be in reach just as well).
Classic confetti soap isn't ideal, since it will hold the canola shreds in place at high local concentration of stuff prone to go rancid.
 

saddigilmore

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@saddigilmore
First off, for high-canola soap (with neither antioxidants nor chelators), DOS is a real threat. Whatever you do, keep a small bit of this soap for months…years to remind yourself why you should care about rancidity. Even if the soap hardens up decently, it won't be great (but in the end, that was your intention and expectation).
It was pretty hard when I got home, but I managed to cut through it, but it wasn't easy :p It looked pretty rough.

So I had to see DOS for myself, and I did.

It took 3 weeks, it was poured on May 20 :/ DOS being a real threat, you weren't kidding. Less than 1 month!
My first time seeing it. But I also saw it on my non-raps soaps...

I didn't know that ANY metal besides stainless also causes DOS... I was using soap stamps that were brass, won't do that again. some got DOS,but only on the stamp, exactly, and nowhere else.

I got DOS on a 75/25 lard/coconut oil one, but this was right on the stamp, again.... First time seeing DOS, and it happens on my non-experiment soaps too. hah!

But one I made with 50% rapsoil still doesn't have DOS yet. I'm keeping an eye on them all, still. I wonder if there's a magic % that I can have, where I don't need extra antioxidants/chelators and still get a decent shelf life...

So in short... I totally believe that high% raps/canola is a huge DOS risk... I just, can't say for sure that I didn't contaminate all of my soaps with weird metals, tainting my results... :(
 

saddigilmore

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But if you're going to fly or take a train or bus, it can be a bit more of an ordeal, so if so, I'd CPOP now and see if that helps today. If it's still too soft before you leave, then, if it were me, I'd wrap it in plastic wrap tightly to keep out the air and leave it until returning home. Then it can't get rock hard while you are gone, and upon your return you can unwrap and either cut then, or let it sit out in the air to dry a bit more and cut later.

Wrapping a block of new soap in Saran wrap is something I have done for months, in fact, and was still able to cut the soap without difficulty. AND the soap did not go rancid or get DOS or anything adverse. So I know this works.
I wish I would have read this before I hit the road, I maybe would have Cpoped it, and it would have been cut and looked better. But It was moot anyway, I got DOS in 3 weeks. :p but I know for next time!! PS: I am also a HUGEEE squirrel fan :))
 

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