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wood and ashes
The wood in this pile will be reduced to this much ash when it is burned. What happens to the rest of the mass from the wood?

Soap Making

We took the first steps in learning about how soap was once made in the Wood Ashes experiment, using water to dissolve potassium hydroxide out of paper ashes.

If we had been serious about making soap, we would have used a lot more ashes, probably from a wood fire. We would have dissolved the potassium hydroxide in water and then would have boiled the water to concentrate the chemicals.