Tuesday, May 4, 2010

The Great Fail, Part II

I know it's been a week and you've been dying (insert sarcastic snort here) to find out what happened with my soap mold, but I have to stop and remind you that Mother's day is next Sunday.  So remember to take a time out this week to make her something nice. Okay...back to the story.

So after putting my mold together, I wanted to test and make sure it wouldn't leak.  As a general rule when choosing a soap mold, if it holds water, it will hold soap. Using this way of thinking, I lined my mold with wax paper and filled it with 4 lbs worth of water. It took all of about 10 seconds for that water to soak through the paper and start pouring out the bottom of the mold.  Luckily I had the forethought to set the mold on an oversized cookie sheet, so the water was well contained. Cleanup was easy but I was discouraged.

Panicked that my project had majorly failed, I ran over to the Teach Soap forums to request help from the scores of other soap makers who use wooden molds. They suggested differently lining materials, so that's what I tried next.  Parchment paper was the next test subject.  It held water for about 15 seconds.  Then came freezer paper. Maybe 20 seconds.  So I took another trip to Lowe's.

Vinyl gasket material.  That's what came next.  It's the stuff that is used to seal the edges of doors and windows.  I unhinged the sides of my molds, cut the gasket to length and then forced the hinges back on.  It was messy looking and ill fitting, and utterly horrible. But...I was going to give it a water test any way.  As expected, water poured out faster from my mold than ever before. The side boards were just elevated too far to make a tight seal with the bottom.

Once again, I ran crying to the forums. This time, my peers suggested just going for the soap.  That my problem may simply be that soap is more viscous than water and will do just fine, where the water keeps pouring out.  I haven't taken up that challenge yet.  The first step will be putting my mold back together minus the gasket material.  I'm extremely nervous about pouring hot caustic liquid into the thing and having it run out all over my kitchen. This could turn out to be a complete disaster, but I guess I'll never know until I try it.

What about you?  Have you ever had a project turn out so horribly wrong that there was no way to salvage it?

No comments: