Improvised kitchen scale

No kitchen scale? I say no problem.

I found myself in a pinch last week at my mom’s house. I’d promised to bring my kitchen scale to North Carolina so we could divvy up the soap base for her melt & pour soap party. Well, I forgot it.

Rather than chopping the 10lb block into 10 equal portions by look, which wasn’t going so hot since the soap base wasn’t particularly responsive to my dicing desires, I decided to make a lever.

True, you can use levers in all sorts of ways, but a scale is a lever balanced at center point. image courtesy of linked webpageI determined the center point (of my paint stir stick) and located a 1lb bag of peanuts to suffice as a counterweight. A vitamin holder served as the fulcrum. I could’ve hunted around for a finer, more triangle-shaped fulcrum point, but the vitamin holder doo-hicky worked just fine for me; precision wasn’t absolutely necessary.

Balancing the peanuts against chunks of soap base gave me 10 portions within a few ounces of 1lb.

I ended up with a little stash of soap base in the end, which probably had something to do with my too-wide fulcrum base. I just divvied that amount up between the bowls and then balanced them against each other as a quick check.

If you wanted a higher degree of precision, I’d suggest a triangular fulcrum point, and you’d probably want to pull out the ruler and mark the center point. You’ll also want to make sure you have the weights placed at the same point on your lever. In the case of the stir stick, I made sure the base of the bowl was butted up to the very end of the stick on both sides. Think symmetry.

This should make all the Libras out there very happy. Go forth and balance!