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S.A.P. Values in Soap Making

SAP values are the numeric values that allow you to calculate the precise amount of sodium hydroxide (NaOH) or potassium hydroxide (KOH) required to fully saponify a given weight of oil/s.


As well as On-Line calculators, a very simple way to calculate how much is required is to use a simple 'multiplication factor' given in the Saponification Charts just below for most popular oils, butters and waxes.


These can be used in either grams or ounces. To convert ounces into grams for any reason simply multiply by 28.35.


Water is not a precise measurement. When calculating the amount of water to use in a soap recipe work on approximately 30-35% of the total weight of other ingredients used. i.e. 4lb (1816g) of oils and 8.2oz (233g) sodium hydroxide will require approximately 1lb 8oz (680g) of water.


Saponification Chart (sodium hydroxide, NaOH)


To use this simple chart, just multiply the weight of each oil (in either Grams or Ounces) by the value for that oil in the table below. This will give the amount of Sodium Hydroxide required to fully saponify that amount of that particular oil (in Grams or Ounces). Soap Making is a very precise science, so you should always work in one or other factor of measurement if possible. If for any reason you need to convert ounces into grams, simply multiply by 28.35 for a fairly accurate result.


For combinations of oils, each oil should be calculated separately and then the figures added together to give the overall figure for the combination.


In all home soap making, to ensure safety and avoid 'free caustic alkali' in your soap you should Superfat your recipe. A minimum superfatting percentage generally considered appropriate is 5%. Therefore, after calculating your required sodium hydroxide you should discount this by 5% minimum.


Almond (Sweet): 0.136
Apricot kernel: 0.135
Arachis: 0.136
Avocado: 0.133
Babassu: 0.175
Beef Tallow: 0.1405
Borage Oil: 0.136
Brazil Nut Oil: 0.175
Butterfat (cow): 0.1619
Butterfat (goat): 0.1672
Camelia oil: 0.136
Castor: 0.1286
Chicken fat: 0.1389
Chinese Bean: 0.135
Cocoa Butter: 0.137
Coconut (refined): 0.190
Coconut (virgin): 0.1946
Cod Liver Oil: 0.1326
Coffee Seed Oil: 0.130
Colza: 0.124
Corn (Maize): 0.136
Cottonseed: 0.1386
Deer Tallow: 0.1379
Earthnut: 0.136
Emu oil: 0.135
Evening Primrose: 0.136
Flaxseed: 0.1357
Gigely Tree: 0.133
Goat Tallow: 0.1383
Goose Fat: 0.1369
Grapeseed: 0.1265
Grapefruit Seed Oil: 0.123-0.135
Hazelnut: 0.1356
Hemp Seed: 0.1345
Herring Oil: 0.136
Illippe Butter 0.136
Jojoba: 0.069
Kapok: 0.137
Katchung: 0.136
Kokum Butter 0.134
Kukui Nut: 0.135
Lard: 0.138
Linseed: 0.1357
Loccu: 0.134
Macadamia Nut: 0.139
Mango Butter: 0.135
Mink Oil: 0.140
Moringa 0.136
Mustard Seed Oil: 0.1241
Myrtle oil: 0.069
Neat's Foot Oil: 0.1359
Neem: 0.1387
Niger Seed Oil: 0.1355
Nutmeg Butter: 0.116
Olive Oil: 0.134
Olive Butter: 0.185
Palm Kernel: 0.156
Palm: 0.141
Peanut: 0.136
Perilla: 0.1369
Pistachio Oil: 0.135
Poppy Seed Oil: 0.1383
Pork Tallow: 0.138
Pumpkin Seed: 0.1331
Ramic: 0.124
Rape Seed (Canola): 0.124
Rice Bran: 0.128
Ricinus: 0.1286
Safflower: 0.136
Sardine Oil: 0.135
Sesame Seed: 0.133
Sunflower: 0.134
Shea (Karite) Butter: 0.128 Sheeps Tallow: 0.1383
Soybean: 0.135
Sunflower: 0.134
Tung: 0.1377
Vegetable Shortening (hydrogenated mixed vegetable oils): 0.136
Venison Fat: 0.139
Walnut: 0.1353
Wheatgerm: 0.131
Waxes...
Beeswax: 0.069
Carnauba Wax: 0.069
Lanolin: 0.0741


.


Download a SAP Calculator Spreadsheet....


Saponification Chart (potassium hydroxide, KOH)


To use this simple chart, just multiply the weight of each oil (in either Grams or Ounces) by the value for that oil in the table below. This will give the amount of Potassium Hydroxide required to fully saponify that amount of that particular oil (in Grams or Ounces). Soap Making is a very precise science, so you should always work in one or other factor of measurement if possible. If for any reason you need to convert ounces into grams, simply multiply by 28.35 for a fairly accurate result.


For combinations of oils, each oil should be calculated separately and then the figures added together to give the overall figure for the combination.


In all home soap making, to ensure safety and avoid 'free caustic alkali' in your soap you should Superfat your recipe. A minimum superfatting percentage generally considered appropriate is 5%. Therefore, after calculating your required sodium hydroxide you should discount this by 5% minimum.


Almond (Sweet): 0.1925
Apricot kernel: 0.1941
Avocado: 0.1886
Babassu: 0.2463
Beef Tallow: 0.1999
Borage Oil: 0.1886
Castor: 0.1811
Chicken fat: 0.1910
Cocoa Butter: 0.1941
Coconut (refined): 0.2690
Corn (Maize): 0.1927
Cottonseed: 0.1954
Deer Tallow: 0.1946
Emu oil: 0.1939
Evening Primrose: 0.1918
Flaxseed: 0.1913
Goat Tallow: 0.1946
Goose Fat: 0.1900
Grapeseed: 0.1861
Hazelnut: 0.1928
Hemp Seed: 0.1914
Jojoba: 0.0979
Kukui Nut: 0.1903
Lard: 0.1970
Linseed: 0.1913
Macadamia Nut: 0.1959
Mink Oil: 0.1976
Mustard Seed Oil: 0.1720
Neem: 0.1932
Niger Seed Oil: 0.1890
Olive Oil: 0.1906
Olive Butter: 0.1880
Palm Kernel: 0.2503
Palm: 0.2000
Peanut: 0.1925
Poppy Seed Oil: 0.1960
Pork Tallow: 0.1946
Pumpkin Seed: 0.1956
Rape Seed (Canola): 0.1870
Rice Bran: 0.1808
Safflower: 0.1928
Sesame Seed: 0.1882
Shea (Karite) Butter: 0.1825 Sheeps Tallow: 0.1949
Soybean: 0.1914
Sunflower: 0.1903
Venison Fat: 0.1946
Walnut: 0.1900
Wheatgerm: 0.1858
Waxes...
Beeswax: 0.0970
Carnauba Wax: 0.087
Lanolin: 0.1054


.


Download a SAP Calculator Spreadsheet....


For the traditionalist or just for your interest, here's the old fashioned method...

SAP Values of popular soap making oils

Below, for the traditionalist, we also list the traditional SAP values for a number of popular soap making oils together with the mathematics of how to use them.


Almond (sweet): 192.5
Apricot Kernel: 190.0
Avocado: 187.5
Babassu: 247.0
Beef Tallow: 197.0
Borage: 188.0
Calendula: 190.0
Castor: 180.3
Cocoa Butter: 193.8
Coconut: 268.0
Corn: 192.0
Evening Primrose: 191.0
Hazelnut: 195.0
Hemp Seed: 192.8
Illippe Butter 188-200
Jojoba: 97.5
Kokum Butter 187-193
Kukui Nut: 190.0
Lard: 194.6
Macadamia Nut: 195.0
Moringa 193.2
Neem: 194.5
Olive: 189.7
Palm Kernel: 219.9
Palm: 199.1
Peanut: 192.1
Pumpkin Seed: 193.0
Rapeseed: 174.7
Rosehip Seed: 193.0
Safflower: 192.0
Sesame Seed: 187.9
Shea Butter: 180.0
Soybean: 190.6
Sunflower Seed: 188.7
Wheatgerm: 185.0
Waxes Beeswax: 88-100
Lanolin: 82-130
Lecithin: 110-140

HOW TO USE

To calculate the SAP value for a combination of oils first you need to calculate what percentage of the whole mixture of oils each oil makes up. For example. A mixture of oils consisting of 2 Lb Olive Oil: 1Lb 4oz Coconut Oil: 12oz Palm Oil will be: 50%Olive Oil: 31.25% Coconut Oil: 18.75% Palm Oil. Representing all the oils as 1, each percentage then becomes: 0.5: 0.3125: 0.1875


Next you multiply each figure by the Value in the table for each oil and add them all together. This will be:

0.5 (189.7) + 0.3125 (268) + 0.1875 (199.1) = 215.93 and divide by 1000 = 0.21593


Next, multiply the total 4Lb of oils by this figure:

4Lb x 0.21593 = 0.86Lb of (potassium) hydroxide.


Because SAP values pre-date our use of sodium hydroxide in soapmaking we have to make an adjustment. SAP values are for using potassuim hydroxide. To convert simply multiply the figure by 40/56.1:

0.86 x 40/56.1 = 0.61Lb


To convert into Ounces, multiply by 16: 0.61 x 16 = 9.76oz


Finally, as most of us work in grams these days, convert this figure by multiplying by 28.35:

9.76 x 28.35 = 276 grams


Therefore, to produce a fully saponified soap using 2Lb Olive Oil: 1Lb 4oz Coconut Oil and 12oz of Palm Oil you will need 276 grams of Sodium Hydroxide.


To superfat your soap, simply discount this figure. As a guide, between 5 and 10% discount will produce a very good superfatted soap, i.e. 250g will be a satisfactory amount of sodium hydroxide to achieve a good superfatted soap formula.


Water is not a precise measurement. When calculating the amount of water to use in a soap recipe work on approximately 30-35% of the total weight of other ingredients used. i.e. 4lb (1816g) of oils and 8.2oz (233g) sodium hydroxide will require approximately 1lb 8oz (680g) of water.

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