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Making Glycerine Biodiesel Soap

Making Glycerine Biodiesel Soap

Written by Adam Cloe

Glycerine is one of the byproducts from the process by which biodiesel is made. Biodiesel is made from vegetable oil through a chemical process as transesterification, which yields biodiesel and glycerine. Soap made from this glycerine is good for industrial purposes because it can readily clean grease. For household use, dyes and fragrances can be added to alter the colour and smell. Glycerine obtained from the transesterification reaction should be filtered to remove any impurities.

Other Ingredients
Most soaps are essentially a mixture of glycerine, lye and water. Changing the amounts of lye and water can affect the properties of the soap that is produced. Adding more lye makes a stronger soap that is very good at cutting grease. However, large amounts of lye also dry out the skin. Adding extra water helps the soap generate a thicker lather. As a starting basic, one quart of water and 170gr of lye for every gallon of glycerine is a good benchmark.

Process
The glycerine should first be heated to between 65.6 and 79.4 degrees Celsius to remove any methanol and ethanol that may be contaminating it. Then, the lye should be added to the water. This mixture should be heated to 37.8 degrees C and then added to the heated glycerine. This mixture should be mixed slowly for about 20 minutes, after which it can be poured into a storage container for cooling. After 24 hours, the soap can be cut into bars, and allowed to cool further. After 4 to 7 days, the soap will be ready for use.