Monday, 11 February 2013

Soap Cutter–Getting there slowly

Cutting Soap2007

When I first started making soap I did not really have any idea how I was going to cut it into bars and didn’t think it would be so hard to get it even every time. How hard can it be right? So after trying to eyeball it I decided I needed some sort of a guide to help me so I made the initial soap cutter (above). It worked really well except for a few minor issues: The soap did not stay in place and moved slightly when I was cutting it., the cutter/ blade seemed to bend during cutting so the bars were not totally straight on the edge and I had no way of measuring the cut bars – there were no markings on the cutter.

When I got busier and I was spending a lot of time cutting soap I decided to get a little more fancy and save myself some time so we built this cutter. I do love this cutter but it seems to only be good for cutting blocks of soap into logs. So once I had the logs I was back to good old faithful but had to still cut the logs into bars. I have a plan in mind for my log cutter which should help me save time but I need the time to make the adjustments.

Soap LogsSoap Logs2

Old faithful takes so long to cut logs into bars as each one is individually cut. I decided at Christmas to make a cutter that would save me some time. It didn’t work out exactly as I had hoped as it too needs some more thought and a few adjustments. I am working on that but in the mean time I am back to old faithful with a few adjustments to make things easier.

DSCN0022Cuttter2

I added a metal corner “thingies” to keep the cutter in place as the blade that cut the wood was quite thick and my cutter had too much room to move. The next thing I did was put a “stopper” on the end the hold the soap in place and prevent it moving whilst being cut. As I did not have a lot of room to play with at the end of the cutter I had to use a very thin piece of board with a metal slider. All good so far… sort of. The sider only had 2cm of “slide” in it so I could only cut my bars a certain size and no bigger. Not that great it I wanted to be a little flexible so I had to rethink the design. I used it like this for a long time while my brain put the problem to work in the background.

Cutter3

The next “problem” was stability. So I improvised until I could come up with a better plan. I used cable ties to hold it together. They worked really well but didn’t look too nice.

Next week I will show you what final adjustments I made to the cutter so it is as good as you can get for an individual bar cutter. The multi cutter is still in the pipeline but at the back of my brain while I work out the kinks.

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Riverlea Soap

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