Making a Giant Slab of Soap
I have been lurking here from time to time, and I really liked some of the production upscaling advice you guys had so I thought I’d give it a shot.I am planning to make a 300kg soap slab for an art project. My biggest batch so far has been 2kg, so I am in way over my head. As of now I don’t have access to any industrial size production facilities, so I am going to have to wing it somehow.There are two different recipes I am considering.
One is cold process formulated with coconut and lard. It would make for a hard and durable slab that would not need to cure much. This is important cause it will spent the summer outside in sun and rain. The biggest problem for me is how to melt all the fat so that it can be stirred to emulsify when lye solution is added. Where I live summers are cold and wet, and only a couple of days a year the solid oils and butters will liquify.How would I pour this giant drum of alkaline sludge into the mold? I would like to do the pouring directly into a mold atop a trailer and drive it to the site to unmold as to prevent damage.
I guess one of the options would be to make smaller batches and just pour them atop each other, but I guess there would be visible imperfections on the surface… Maybe that is fine, too, as it would not be visible for long as I intend for people to use it.Another recipe I’m considering is for a high temperature hit process transparent glycerin soap which could be made to be remeltable. This way I could do smaller batches, but how would I remelt all that and pour it fast enough before the previous pour solidifies? This method would maybe not look so great done in layers, as the boundaries would be visible, the soap would be softer and maybe less durable. But maybe it would be more interesting as it ages under the influence of the elements and people…I would have access to a budget that would cover things like one of those concrete blenders or such equipment, induction cooker and big pot or such.Everything about this is scaring me right now, but it is also exciting. I welcome all suggestions, questions and ideasThank you for your time