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Soap is a particularly useful type of bar used for personal cleaning, which increases happiness ("recently took a soapy bath") and lowers the chances of an infection in case they are wounded, and for cleaning wounds in hospitals, preventing infections from developing. It is thus a vital commodity in dwarven health care, and one not traded in caravans: you're going to have to make some soap yourself. Since soap is considered to be a bar it can be used to make constructions and workshops.

[edit] Manufacture

Soap is made of two components, lye and fat (either tallow or oil), and requires a dedicated workshop, the soap maker's workshop. It has a somewhat complicated production process; lye must be produced at an ashery from ash, which in turn must be created at a wood furnace from wood logs that must first be cut down. Tallow is rendered from fat from butchered animals at a kitchen, requiring either livestock or hunting activities, while oil must be pressed from seeds or rock nuts at a screw press, which first requires gathering up or growing crops and then processing them at the farmer's workshop. One unit of tallow or oil plus one of lye creates a single bar of finished soap.

Soapmaking procedure
Chop wood Butcher an animal Mill seeds with a quern or millstone Press oil from olives (fruit) in a screw press
Make ash in a wood furnace Render fat in a kitchen Press oil from seed paste in a screw press
Make lye at an ashery Tallow Oil
Lye Tallow or Oil
Make soap at a soap maker's workshop

[edit] Hygiene

Dwarves do not require soap to clean contaminants such as mud and blood from themselves - if necessary, they will use murky pools, artificial pools of water, brooks, or a well. However, using soap will often generate the happy thought "recently took a soapy bath". It is possible to construct bath-houses (rooms containing pools of water, a soap stockpile, and perhaps a few nice statues) so dwarves living deep underground need not venture to dangerous cave pools or surface brooks to clean off a little mud or bloodstain. For cleaning wounds and preventing infection after surgery, however, hospitals should be kept stocked with a small amount of soap. Soap will get used up as dwarves wash themselves; the current rate seems to be 1/10 a bar per washing, so each bar lasts quite a while.

Dwarves have an internal "dirtiness" level, which gets lowered when they have a bath, lowered further when they have a soapy bath and slowly builds up over time. This "dirtiness" value is connected to the chance of getting an infection if the dwarf is injured, making soap useful as a preventative as well as treatment.

Soap is stored in bar/block stockpiles with the "soap" option enabled.

A convenient way to keep an emergency stockpile of soap is to use it as a building material for workshops or constructions such as walls. When/if you need more soap, you can deconstruct and get the soap bars back. Since soap in a hospital is reserved for hospital use, this is especially useful in case you start to produce soap before setting up a hospital.

"Soap" in other Languages Books-aj.svg aj ashton 01.svg
Dwarven: uben
Elvish: dathe
Goblin: snubez
Human: kamven

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