Candle making?

Discussion in 'Products of the Hive' started by brooksbeefarm, Nov 3, 2012.

  1. brooksbeefarm

    brooksbeefarm Active Member

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    Thinking about making candles from my cappings to sell at the farmers market.What would be the cost of the equipment to get started? and best place to get it? Would it be worth my time and effort? or would i be better off selling the wax? Jack
     
  2. PerryBee

    PerryBee New Member

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    This is an absolute no-brainer (lucky for me) Jack.
    Making candles and stuff like Christmas ornaments is the way to go. It doubles or triples the price you get for your wax (probably even more than that).
    It takes a bit of time and if you go with silicone molds the initial cost has to be taken into account but once you have it ........
    If you are at all gifted you can even bypass the molds and do hand dipped tapers.
    I am always hesitant to sell wax at $7 or $8 a pound when I know with a bit of time and effort I can do way better than that.
     
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  3. Daniel Y

    Daniel Y New Member

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    Cost of equipment is pretty much impossible to give a price on. A range of price is more like it.

    DO you want basic (making only a few candles) or more of a production type set up? I will assume basic

    You wil need a (prices are just an idea)
    pour pot $8.75
    thermometer $7.45
    Digital scale. $20.00 even from a post office. to $40.00
    molds or container (you will want a selection, multiply by number of different candles you will make) approx $9.00 per mold X 6 $54.00
    Selection of wicks A master wick sample kit I found was $45.00 is dollars Wick by the roll runs around $9.50 per roll would will want a variety. Guesstimate $30.00 in wicks.
    Fragrance oils if desired $12.00 for 6 scents
    Dyes if desired Guesstimate for sampler kit $25.00

    SO it depends on how you want to approach this.

    Make only purely natural votive beeswax candles and sell those to generate funds to expend. purest conservative approach you can get started for say, $35.00 ish and put off the purchase of even a scale
    Pot,
    thermometer
    5 votive molds
    one size of wick by the roll.

    Or go full blown with a variety of candle styles. colors fragrances etc. possibly as much as $225.00 or so. And that is not getting very fancy. That gives you 6 styles of molds, 6 fragnrances and pretty much an unlimited number of colors to work with. But the melting pouring and molds are only basic.
     
  4. gunsmith

    gunsmith New Member

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    What Daniel Y said. With a little bit of shopping, you can pick up some of the stuff at garage sales, flea markets, etc. Start out small and simple, sell some, take the money from your initial sales to expand. Like the rest of beekeeping-the sky's the limit.
     
  5. PerryBee

    PerryBee New Member

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    I went basic as far as molds go. Don't bother with fragrances and colours, people who buy your honey are after "natural" stuff.
    I went with silicone taper molds (3.7 ounces a pair) $6
    A 3" pillar (10.4 ounces) $12
    A 6" pillar (20.6 ounces) $20
    An Emergency pillar (8.0 ounces) $10
    A 2" skep (a big seller-1.8 ounces) $3
    Beeswax bars (1.2 ounces) $1.50
    Christmas decorations (unsure of weight, but no where near an ounce) $1
     

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  6. brooksbeefarm

    brooksbeefarm Active Member

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    WoW, didn't know it got that involved:shock: I seen all the pretty wax Perry showed on another post and started getting all the 5 gal buckets of cappings gathered up. I melted all of it in a crock pot and put in plastic containers, it made about 30 to 40 pounds, some real light and some butterscotch color. I strained it through a plastic colander into a gallon bucket then through a larg metal coffee strainer into a plastic coffee can then through the same coffee strainer into plastic storage containers you get at the dollar strore. four of the finished containers had some black stuff settled to the very bottom of them, guess i can cut that off when i get it out of the containers? It's so pretty i don't know if i want to sell it or not.:lol: Jack
    PS. This took the biggest part of the day.:roll:
     
  7. Omie

    Omie Active Member

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    Perry i only have a pound or two of wax- can you please point me to where you bought that triple bee skep silicone mold, and the proper wicks to go with that type of candle? I just want to make a few of those. :razz:
     
  8. Walt B

    Walt B Active Member

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    Jack, You may want to PM Hobie. She made candles last year and the process is probably still fresh in her mind. :smile:

    Walt
     
  9. PerryBee

    PerryBee New Member

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    Omie:

    It's PM-803 $26.95 (for a mold that makes 3 at a time). do 3 pours and that's 9 skeps @ $3.00 a piece and it's paid for. :wink:
    If you check out the wick section it tells you exactly which wick goes with which mold.

    http://www.mannlakeltd.com/beekeeping-supplies/page132.html

    Jack:

    It does take time :lol: Just scrape or cut off the junk and melt it down with the next batch of cappings. Now turn that gold into $$$$ :mrgreen:
     
  10. BoilerJim

    BoilerJim New Member

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    Perry, where did you get the gold thread for the Christmas decorations? I didn't see them in the Mann Lake catalog.

    Jim
     
  11. PerryBee

    PerryBee New Member

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    Hey Jim:

    Actually, that's wire. Almost any craft store will carry it. Just twist the 2 ends together, put a little bend in it to sink in the wax, and pour. These decorations use so little wax it's almost hard to pour and yet they sell for a buck a piece. People like the smell on their Christmas tree.
    My best sellers are the skeps, every kid that walks by asks Mom or Dad to get one. :lol:
     
  12. brooksbeefarm

    brooksbeefarm Active Member

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    After melting beeswax in the shop from noon till 6 pm i've been feeling weird, my clothes hurt touching my skin eyes ached behind my eyeballs, and joints ached.After i was in the house awhile it let up and i didn't sleep good last knight. Felt alright this mourning until i walked around the barn and done my chores and came to the house. Now i'm setting here typing this and all those symptoms are back? It was 60f yesterday and i had to keep the shop door shut most of the day and it got smoky in there a few times, i would open the door and let it air out, the bees were flying and i couldn't leave the door open to long or i'd have a shop full of bees. Is it possible breathing the fumes off the beeswax done this? (of course i know it's possible, but have any of you had this happen Jack
     
  13. PerryBee

    PerryBee New Member

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    Geez Jack, sorry to hear that.
    I melt wax in the kitchen, no ventilation other than the fan above the stove going. Everyone that walks in says it smells great in the house. I only melt wax (indoors) that has already been through my solar melter once and all the really bad junk (corpses, etc.) have already been removed. I wonder if you were melting really crude wax and the fumes from all that crud being cooked got to you?
     
  14. brooksbeefarm

    brooksbeefarm Active Member

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    Yes, it had crude in the bottom of the crockpot everytime i poured the wax off, i would scrape an inch of crude out before i put more wax in. I'm a tough old bird an most things don't bother me, but this has zapped me? Jack
     
  15. gunsmith

    gunsmith New Member

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    Jack:
    Are you just melting the cappings, or are you melting old comb too? I may be way off base here, but I'm thinking that if it's old comb-there MAY be some type of chemical contamination, i.e. pesticides, herbicides, etc. Just a thought.
     
  16. Omie

    Omie Active Member

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    I'm thinking toxic chemicals one way or another. I can't imagine any other reasons for your weird symptoms of illness after a day of melting old comb for hours. Any coughing, tingling, numbness, confusion, visual disturbances?
    You mention the shop was smoky as you worked- just how high were you heating the wax, or maybe it was melting chemicals from the plastic containers you were pouring the wax into? Were you breathing fumes from propane or kerosene etc used in the heating process? If all other sources are are eliminated, there must be something toxic accumulated in the wax. Are you producing smoke from the wax by overheating it?
     
  17. brooksbeefarm

    brooksbeefarm Active Member

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    It was cappings,when i'm through extracting i put the cappings in a larg tray and set it out on the picnic table for the bees. When there done with it, the cappings look like saw dust and i store them in five gal. buckets. I've not used any chemicals in my hives for 15 or more years now, only essential oils,thymol oil and wintergreen oil, or spearent oil, and only then when i see a need to for mites. An older couple came after turnips a couple hours ago and i went and helped them (afaird the might trip and fall) the fresh air must of helped me, i'm feeling better now.:thumbsup: I use to give the cappings to an elderly lady that made things out of them to sell for extra income ( she only had her deceased husbands SS to live on). She passed away three years ago and i thought i might try to do something with them. Jack
     
  18. Omie

    Omie Active Member

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    What makes you so sure it was the cappings that made you feel ill?
     
  19. brooksbeefarm

    brooksbeefarm Active Member

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    I'm not sure it was,but i felt fine before i started melting the cappings. Some of the cappings had formed a hard ball while stored in the buckets, and i had to bring them to a boil before they melted in the crock pot. Thats what caused the smoke when took the lid off to stire it, but i did have the glass lid on the crock pot most of the time? Jack
     
  20. PerryBee

    PerryBee New Member

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    Sometimes a bucket full of old wax can have a build up of mould and stuff on it, I wonder if perhaps you got a bit of an exposure to the contents?