Guar Gum and Water Concentrate RecipeEdit
This recipe makes a little more than a gallon of a guar and water solution containing 1/3 gram of guar per ounce. It can be used in any guar-based bubble solution recipe (see application notes below). I've found it useful for making a series of final mixes with varying ratios of water, soap, guar, etc, without having to deal with guar clumps when making each batch.
Preparation time: 45+ minutes.
Yield: Supplies guar for over 14 gallons of final mix requiring 3 grams guar per gallon.
Shelf life: About 2 months, refrigerated.
Please review this Wiki's Guar Recipes page before proceeding. It includes many useful details regarding the ingredients, procedures, equipment, etc, that aren't given here. The beginning steps of its Basic Mix recipe produce a similar concentrate with about half as much guar per volume of water as this mixture here.
Ingredients (for 1+ gallon)Edit
Ingredient: US Weight (US Volume) = Metric Weight (Metric Volume)
Water: 128 ounces (1 gallon) = 3.8 kilograms (3800 milliliters)
Guar gum: 1.5 ounces (1/4 cup + 1 tsp) = 42.7 grams (64 milliliters)
91% isopropyl alcohol: See procedures. (About 2.5 fluid oz, or 1/4 cup + 1 tbsp, or 75 milliliters)
Large mixing bowl (> 1 gallon capacity)
Small mixing cup (approx 1/2 cup)
Chopstick, fork, or small spoon
- Measure the guar (42.7 g) into the small mixing cup.
- Make a slurry of the guar by stirring in just enough alcohol to make a thin lump-free paste that's easily poured.
- Fill (or heat) the large bowl with a gallon of 180 F (82 C) water.
- Stir the slurry once again, then beat the hot water with the whisk while gradually but continually pouring all of the slurry into the bowl.
- Continue beating for about a minute. Afterward, there will still be some clumps of guar in the mix.
- Optional: Measure and note the weight of the mix and its container.
- As the mix cools, it will thicken and a skin will form. Every 5 minutes, beat this skin and all areas of the mix together to an even consistency. After the second whisking, avoid scraping clumps off the sides of the bowl. Let them remain stuck or scrape them out with a spoon.
- The skin formation will become much less pronounced when the mix cools to about 125 F (52 C). Typically, all the clumps will have dissolved by this time. It usually takes at least 30 minutes, but depends very much on your mixing container.
- Continue stirring every 10 or 15 minutes as needed to remove remaining clumps, incorporate any skin, and allow the mix to cool to a comfortable temperature for storage and refrigeration.
- Optional: Measure and note the weight of the mix and its container, and calculate the difference from before, which represents the alcohol and water lost to evaporation. Replace this lost amount with warm water, beating it into the mix.
- Bottle it. Avoid scraping any hardened clumps from the sides of the bowl as you pour out the mix. If it's too thick to pour, gradually beat in warm water until it's manageable.
If your mixing bowl has a narrow base, you might encounter fewer clumps by stirring the water into the slurry, as some guar recipes suggest.
It's tempting to reclaim some of the slurry that sticks to its mixing cup by immersing it in, or flushing it with the mix. Don't. It will add tough clumps. You might collect some sizable clumps of guar on your whisk. It's best to rinse these off rather than try to work them into the mix.
Until all clumps are mixed-in, I do not recommend trying to hurry the cooling process. After that point you can, for example, set your mixing container in a sink of cold water. Avoid putting your cooling mixture under a ceiling fan or similar breeze, as this will greatly increase skin formation.
With Bob's Red Mill guar gum, this concentrate is barely thin enough to handle conveniently. With other brands, its thickness might vary. Be aware that it will thin somewhat after a day or two of resting, and eventually become comparatively watery.
This concentrate conveniently can be made in a 1-gallon non-stick pot on the stove, adding the slurry to the heated water.
This concentrate can be diluted with hot or cold water for your final mix. For the fastest mixing and longest shelf life, use water as near to boiling as practical.
Adding water to the concentrate, instead of vice versa, will give you a head start on the mixing. I find it easiest to first stir the concentrate/water mix for just a few seconds (some clouds will remain undissolved), then wait a minute or two before stirring more. After this pause, it's easy to achieve a homogenous mix with a minimal amount of effort. It can also be shaken. The foam that accumulates dissipates quickly.
Because of its thickness, it's difficult to dispense the final amount of guar concentrate from its storage container. For this reason, it's good to the know the weight of that container, so you can calculate the amount of concentrate that remains within, and perform a dilution for a final mix's batch (or partial batch) within that container.
Final Mix RecipesEdit
The following is an adaptation of the Basic Guar Recipe that uses the above concentrate instead of guar gum powder. The recipe calls for 1.5 grams of guar in its 1 liter of water, and a water:soap ratio of 25:1. Having 1/3 gram of guar per ounce, the amount of concentrate needed to supply 1.5 grams of guar is (1.5 * 3) 4.5 ounces (128 grams). To maintain the same water:soap ratio, the amount of water is reduced to compensate for what's in the concentrate (roughly 4.5 oz).
This metric measure version makes about 1041 ml of bubbling solution...
- Pour 128 grams (ml) of guar/water concentrate into a 1+ liter mixing vessel.
- Add 872 grams (ml) water. Stir for a few seconds, allow clouds to dissolve for a few minutes, then stir again until homogenous.
- Add 40 grams (ml) dish soap and gently mix.
- Add 2 grams or 1 ml baking powder and gently mix.
Here's a version with US measures that makes a little less than 3 1/2 quarts (108 oz) of bubbling solution with similar ratios of guar, soap, and water as the above.
- Pour 8 ounces (1 cup) of guar/water concentrate into a 1 gallon mixing vessel.
- Add 96 ounces (3 quarts) water. Stir for a few seconds, allow clouds to dissolve for a few minutes, then stir again until homogenous.
- Add 4 ounces (1/2 cup) dish soap and gently mix.
- Add one teaspoon baking powder and gently mix.
As noted in the Wiki's Guar recipes page, a 2:1 ratio of baking SODA (sodium bicarbonate) and citric acid can be substituted for the baking POWDER, with similar results. With the baking powder, a harmless precipitate will form at the bottom of your final mix. It can be ignored or easily stirred back in.