Friday, January 22, 2010

Homemade Lye

Try Something New Friday, my first, is all about making homemade lye this week. When I had my dairy goats (and am anxiously awaiting my new dairy goats) I saved some goats milk for soap making. Lye was easier to buy back then, but it can be hard to find now due to its use in drug making. So in preparation of upcoming soap making days, my husband has been saving all his ashes from the BBQ pit. But how exactly do you make lye - the old-fashioned way?

So I went internet searching! I found many websites on the topic and I wanted to share with you my favorites. The first one I am going to start with explained the process well at Journey to Forever. It didn't have any pictures, but I appreciated its detail. So for pictures check out Steve's Art Stuff. He didn't offer a lot of detail, but it did show each step in pictures!

Now for the nuts and bolts. You have read about the process and seen some pictures, but how do you pull it off . . . and safely? Wiki-How had step-by-step instructions for building a lye making device. It's really simple, but I just need someone to lay out the details for me. And for the visual learners out there I found a cool video on You Tube showing the "old-time" equipment and an authentic character telling the story about how they used to do it. The audio is poor, but listen carefully and you will get it all. And for those of you that like nifty inventions, End Times Report set up a rain water collection system for making lye.

Now for the safety of the matter. Lye can be dangerous, but it can be dealt with safely. I found a website that not only describes each step in detail on how to make a lye solution safely, but also offered a video!

After all that, you decide you would rather buy lye than make it here is a list of online suppliers. Although it is difficult to buy lye in the store, it can be ordered from soap making companies. But what's the fun in that? I dare you to try making your own lye for soap making and then tell me all about it! I will most definitely be posting pictures of our endeavors.

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