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Thread: Making Soap from wood ashes

  1. Post #1

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    Default Making Soap from wood ashes




    made a small batch of soap from wood ashes just to see if i could I am always telling people
    how they can make lye and soap from wood ashes but had not tried it.

    ive made a good deal of soap using exact measurements,recipee and purchased lye before
    but this was something different and i learned a few things.

    I learned that you need lots of ash to make even a small batch of soap

    softwood ashes will work but just not as well as hardwood ashes

    its probably better to have a little to much lye than not enough if your guestimating

    i know the floating egg theory but did not have enough lye in this vid to float an egg lol

    if i was to concentrate the lye solution a little before settling i think i would have had cleaner looking soap

    if you dont have a thermometer its better to just add more water to the mix and evaporate it down untill it saponifies.
    Last edited by damoc; 10-09-2011 at 12:21 PM.

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  3. Post #2

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    Former Boat Owner argentos's Avatar
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    Default Re: Making Soap from wood ashes

    I made some of that stuff when I was a teenager, just for fun. A lot of hard graft for not much nasty-looking soap in my case, but at least I know it works.
    "Any fool can criticize, condemn and complain and most fools do."
    Benjamin Franklin

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    Default Re: Making Soap from wood ashes

    QWAK,HUMmmmmmm usefull information BUT a lot of work and effort for very little soap!

    I have a case or two of bar soap I have had for over 20 years in my preps!

    I value them even MORE now after watching the clip!

    the DUCK
    "ALL is ONE" What we DO to and FOR others we DO "TO and FOR" our selves ultimitly!

    People SELDOM look for TRUTH! What they look for is CONFERMATION that what they have chosen to believe IS TRUTH! This is why people will believe almost ANY THING and also WHY the WORLD is SO MESSED UP!

    IT is never realy OVER -- things just CHANGE!

    You can QUOTE me on ALL! It IS what I believe to be TRUE!

    I AM, the DUCK

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    Default Re: Making Soap from wood ashes

    lol yep it was a lot of hard work for not much soap

    but it would have been close to as much work for much greater quantities as well

    just need to save up the wood ashes.

    lol in my preps ive got about 10 cans of lye thats enough soap making material
    for about 10-20 years

  8. 10-09-2011, 01:26 PM


  9. Post #5

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    Default Re: Making Soap from wood ashes

    A couple of links:

    MAKING LYE SOAP THE ARKANSAS WAY

    Preparing raw animal fat: Chop into cubes and cover with an equal volume of water. Boil it until it melts. If you find many small particles that will not melt, remove them with a strainer and discard. Cool and skim fat from the top or allow the fat to solidify and remove.

    Preparing rancid fat: Boil rancid fat in a solution of one part vinegar to five parts water. Cool and skim off the fat or allow it to solidify and remove. Re-melt fat and add one quart of cold water per gallon of hot fat. Stir, cool and skim off the fat.

    Preparing meat drippings: Bring to a boil equal parts of drippings and water. Remove from the heat and cool. Add one quart of cold water per gallon of hot fat. Skim fat off top, allow to solidify and remove. Salt and other impurities sink to the bottom of the pan.

    Along the way, someone perfected a "cold method" of making lye soap. This is the recipe:

    Mix 2 1/2 pints water and 1 can lye.
    Stir until lye is thoroughly dissolved.
    Add this mixture to:
    6 pounds of bacon drippings which have been strained and melted.
    If desired, add perfume or 1/2 cup borax to sweeten.
    Stir together for about 20 minutes. When mixture begins to thicken like gravy, let it stand for a few minutes. Pour into a flat shallow enameled pan to harden overnight. Score and cut into bars.

    I've made lye soap before and it takes practice to perfect the method. I caution you, if you intend to try and make this soap, use protection against the lye. It is toxic and can burn.
    http://www.suite101.com/pages/articl...arkansas/77779


    Here's a PDF you can save off or print out for you BOB docs, that was called "May 1997 Soap Making Traditional Methods Lye Rain Water Wood Ash"
    http://journeytoforever.org/bflpics/...SoapMaking.pdf
    -smooth thread killer

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    Default Re: Making Soap from wood ashes

    QWAK,Seems to me being FUNKEY and DIRTY after TSHTF will be the NEW NORMAL!

    Having a BATH a LUXURY!

    The first two years at the DUCK NEST we did with out runing water For several years after THAT from Nov. to march/april it was too cold out in the GREEN HOUSE BATH most of the time.

    Most years with the JAN. thaw I could run a hot bath during the day when temp was high enough! it was a TREAT!

    Now I can fire up the HOT TUB and PONDER all I want but I had to build it and hook up a boiler!

    I gained a lot of RESPECT for the ones who came here in covered wagons and managed to survive and toughed it out with no help!

    Living like a Mountan Man is realy hard and FUNKEY too!

    the DUCK
    "ALL is ONE" What we DO to and FOR others we DO "TO and FOR" our selves ultimitly!

    People SELDOM look for TRUTH! What they look for is CONFERMATION that what they have chosen to believe IS TRUTH! This is why people will believe almost ANY THING and also WHY the WORLD is SO MESSED UP!

    IT is never realy OVER -- things just CHANGE!

    You can QUOTE me on ALL! It IS what I believe to be TRUE!

    I AM, the DUCK

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    Default Re: Making Soap from wood ashes

    How many years do you go between haircuts, Duck?
    "Any fool can criticize, condemn and complain and most fools do."
    Benjamin Franklin

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    Default Re: Making Soap from wood ashes

    Quote Originally Posted by argentos View Post
    How many years do you go between haircuts, Duck?
    QWAK,argentos,HUMmmmmmmmmm WELlllllllll last time I got a haircut was about 6 or 7 (?) years ago after thet busted me for growing 10 pot plants for madisanal purposes I figured IF I had to go befor a judge I should clean up my act!

    For some reason (?) my hair does not grow fast or long -- just bairly touches my sholders and has been getting thiner and less there as I get older.

    Also went from salt and peper to GRAY and now BLOND don't know why?

    It's just me and the dog and 7 cats and they don't care what I look like as long as I feed them!

    the DUCK
    "ALL is ONE" What we DO to and FOR others we DO "TO and FOR" our selves ultimitly!

    People SELDOM look for TRUTH! What they look for is CONFERMATION that what they have chosen to believe IS TRUTH! This is why people will believe almost ANY THING and also WHY the WORLD is SO MESSED UP!

    IT is never realy OVER -- things just CHANGE!

    You can QUOTE me on ALL! It IS what I believe to be TRUE!

    I AM, the DUCK

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  15. Post #9

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    Default Re: Making Soap from wood ashes

    Quote Originally Posted by damoc View Post
    lol yep it was a lot of hard work for not much soap

    but it would have been close to as much work for much greater quantities as well

    just need to save up the wood ashes.

    lol in my preps ive got about 10 cans of lye thats enough soap making material
    for about 10-20 years
    Damoc,

    Boy lordy! Did you ever bring back memories!

    That's pretty much how we made soap when I was a kid back in the Olden Days (back before air was invented). It was most ricky-tick the kids' job to make the soap.

    HOWEVER! I gots a little help for you:

    1. (you know this already, but I gotta say it) Hardwood ashes only. Wasting yer time with softwood.

    2. Instead of having holes in the bottom of your pot, use a barrel. Drill ONE hole about 2" from the bottom of the right size to be able to close it up with a cork.

    3. Put in yer coupla inches of rock, and the hay. FILL the whole dang barrel with hardwood or fruitwood ash. Add rainwater... until it begins to come out the hole. Then plug the hole. Let it sit a day, and add more ash. (You can see how you were nowhere near having strong enough lye in your excellent demo movie.) At the end of THREE days, you unplug it, and you have really good lye pouring out of the barrel.

    4. We'd never waste an egg. Drop a potato in it. If it floats, yer in!

    5. Just barely melt the fat. Should be able to put your finger in it without discomfort. Pour the lye into the lard. IIRC, it will get warm all by itself (bear with me, this was sixty fargin years ago). Stir constantly -- we had a humongumous wooden spoon with a hole in it to stir with.

    6. Instead of busting yer buns boiling for hours and hours to reduce the liquid, just add some salt to the liquid <-- makes the soap "cake up". Not only that, but the best soap is never heated more that body temp.
    Get that mix in your molds PRONTO!! It will harden in minutes.

    WAY back inna Olden Days, solid soap was the measure of well-to-do folks, since salt was dang hard to come by 'way back in the hills. Po' folks had liquid soap.

    Hope this helps for Attempt Number Two.

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