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  #11  
Old 09-28-2015, 02:43 PM
BenjaminO BenjaminO is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: Residing in the calm sunshine of Santa Cruz, California
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Default Re: my lye bath has lost power?!

I add lye to my tank whenever it seems to lose power. Just sprinkle a quarter pound or so in from time to time and stir. I've been using the same muck for the last 6 months or so, and used it to strip perhaps a hundred pieces. It started to get really sludgy and thick in there, and one day I noticed that the sludge seemed to have congealed. Odd. I grabbed a strainer and went fishing. Hauled out a gallon or two of congealed and coagulated seasoning. It was somewhat like the consistency of jello, or maybe thick oatmeal? Piled it up and let it drain out for a while, bagged it up tight and tossed in in the trash. My lye tank is now back to a water-like consistency and ready for another hundred pieces, if I can find them.
I'm not sure what caused this but maybe it was the hundred degree weather?
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  #12  
Old 09-28-2015, 02:58 PM
RobM RobM is offline
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Default Re: my lye bath has lost power?!

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Originally Posted by BenjaminO View Post
Hauled out a gallon or two of congealed and coagulated seasoning.
Cleaned mine out last month, gross mess...
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  #13  
Old 09-28-2015, 04:05 PM
Jeffrey R. Jeffrey R. is offline
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Location: NEK, Vermont
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Default Re: my lye bath has lost power?!

I order lye 32 lbs at a time. Getting ready to clean mine and put it in for the winter, if I do not I will have a block of ice.
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  #14  
Old 09-28-2015, 04:54 PM
Dan Farmer Dan Farmer is offline
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Location: St Paul, MN
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Default Re: my lye bath has lost power?!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeffrey R. View Post
I order lye 32 lbs at a time. Getting ready to clean mine and put it in for the winter, if I do not I will have a block of ice.
I've been meaning to ask the question: what is the freezing point of a lye solution? Anybody have any idea?
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  #15  
Old 09-28-2015, 07:18 PM
Rick Hunter Rick Hunter is offline
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Join Date: May 2015
Location: Tucson AZ
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Default Re: my lye bath has lost power?!

Funny you should mention temperature Dan. Not sure at what temperature it freezes. But as has been mentioned a few times on this forum....the degree of heat in the lye tub will greatly determine how fast it will work on cleaning up the Iron. I have used the same lye tub without adding lye or cleaning out the tub for a year. During the summer months here in AZ where the tempts get to 110+...Iron cleans up in hours. As it cools it takes a lot longer. Having cleaned over 90 pieces, the solution looks like oil....but it still cleans great.

Am tired of the solution looking so bad. Will probably empty it soon and start from scratch with fresh lye. I am no scientist but that's just my experience!!
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  #16  
Old 09-28-2015, 08:10 PM
W. Hilditch W. Hilditch is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2015
Location: Talking Rock, GA
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Default Re: my lye bath has lost power?!

There are two freezing points depending on the percent of solution. First lye crystals will form in the water and dilute the solution. Here you go:

http://msdssearch.dow.com/PublishedL...romPage=GetDoc

Hilditch
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  #17  
Old 09-28-2015, 08:51 PM
Dan Farmer Dan Farmer is offline
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Default Re: my lye bath has lost power?!

Guess I'm either going to have to drain it for the winter or bring it inside. Not sure I want a tub of lye in the basement. Thanks for the info, guys!
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  #18  
Old 09-28-2015, 09:11 PM
RobM RobM is offline
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Default Re: my lye bath has lost power?!

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Originally Posted by Dan Farmer View Post
Guess I'm either going to have to drain it for the winter or bring it inside. Not sure I want a tub of lye in the basement. Thanks for the info, guys!
Kept mine in the bathroom all last winter, no issue. Just use a container with a lid. I have two large rubbermaid tubs, one inside the other for added strength. Some old towels on the bottom between tubs for support.
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  #19  
Old 09-28-2015, 11:03 PM
RickC RickC is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: CA
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Default Re: my lye bath has lost power?!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeffrey R. View Post
I order lye 32 lbs at a time. Getting ready to clean mine and put it in for the winter, if I do not I will have a block of ice.
No worries here, the average temperature here in California over Winter is about 72f...
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  #20  
Old 09-28-2015, 11:10 PM
RobM RobM is offline
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Default Re: my lye bath has lost power?!

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Originally Posted by RickC View Post
No worries here, the average temperature here in California over Winter is about 72f...
I wish, we've seen temps at -72F. Lye bath wouldn't stand a chance.
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