Candle making?

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

  1. gunsmith

    gunsmith New Member

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    Looking good, Perry. How many did you end up making?
     
  2. Omie

    Omie Active Member

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    iT'D BE INTERESTING TO BURN A BEESWAX TEA LIGHT AND A REGULAR PARAFFIN ONE (oops sorry for the caps), same size, and see how long each burns.
    I never saw those plastic tea light containers before, Perry. Cool! (I'm hoping one can recycle them, too). :)
    Did you need special wicks for the beeswax tea lights, or did you use regular tea light wicks?
     

  3. Minz

    Minz Member

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    If I were Omie’s husband I would be worried after reading her description of the candle man!
    This sounds like where I should go with the next hobby. Woodworking-bee keeping-candle making: it looks like fun and I am over 40 and not into yoga (belly does not stay in my shirt and I have ugly haggard looking feet).
    Seriously how many supers does it take to get a 5 gallon bucket of capping wax? I have been melting all of mine down and putting it on my plastic frames.
     
  4. Omie

    Omie Active Member

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    The candle man is a nice fellow, but he doesn't hold a candle to my man. (lol!)
    No way I would trade. Other men are like little ants scurrying upon the ground around my guy's feet. :)

    Seems to take a LOT of wax to make candles. I harvested with crush and strain, got only 2.5 lbs of wax in the end from about 20 med foundationless frames....enough to make around 20 nice votives. So, if cutting out all the wax from a frame, i'd say you will very roughly average one votive candle per med frame.
     
  5. PerryBee

    PerryBee New Member

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    I've sold 20 already to the lady that first asked. I'm charging $1 each or 6 for $5. I haven't tried to burn any yet as I read somewhere that beeswax candles need to cure for at least 3 days before burning.

    The cups are made of a non combustible poly carbonate. I really don't see why the cups can't be reused.
    http://www.canwax.com/Tealight-Containers-Rcipient-pour-Bougie-Chauffe-Plat_c_133.html

    The wicks I bought are pre-wicked tabs (veggie based htp 73).
    http://www.canwax.com/Veggie-Wax-Coated_c_246.html

    The price for 500 of each was around $85, $15 for shipping and of course another $15 for tax = $115 total.
    At roughly $.90 each (taking into account the 6 for $5) that works out to $450 in sales less the wax (roughly 15.5 lbs.) and materials. The time to pour is miniscule to do a large batch.
    I think I have all my numbers right. :???:
     
  6. Omie

    Omie Active Member

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    Perry, I'd be sure to light one for a 'test drive' before shipping out any large orders of them.

    Anyone know why beeswax candles might not be best until 3 days of 'curing'...?
     
  7. PerryBee

    PerryBee New Member

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    I just hunted on a few sites Omie, and found where candles should cure @ 70 F for at least 24 hours before burning and 4 to 7 days before shipping, but no real explanation as to why. I'll hunt around some more.
     
  8. Barbarian

    Barbarian New Member

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    Wick Thickness

    I was told that for beeswax candles the wick should be twice as thick than for a non-beeswax candle.

    Can anyone comment ??
     
  9. Omie

    Omie Active Member

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    I believe that is true, I've read that in several places- that wicks for beeswax candles need to be thicker than wicks for paraffin candles. Supposedly, a typical wick for paraffin candles will refuse to stay lit in a similar sized beeswax candle. Has anyone actually tried this? I do know I've read lots of posts here and there online from people who were having trouble keeping their beeswax candles from just going out over and over, so it seems probable that folks often use the wrong wicks for beeswax.

    BUT there is another variable as well- and that is the candle diameter. The wicks for thin tapers are a different thickness than the best wicks for thick columns.
    For both these reasons, I ordered from Mann Lake at least for the first time, so as to get their highly experienced wick recommendation for the specific size beeswax candles I was making. For votives, they recommended the #2 wick. Rolls of 100 feet are only about $3, and I thought it was a pretty good deal.
     
  10. Omie

    Omie Active Member

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    I posted some pics of my modest candle production in my 2012 thread, here is the post with photos: https://www.beekeepingforums.com/threads/5421-My-bee-year-2012?p=173451#post173451
    Just wanted to add it there as a way to bring my bee year thread to a close. :)
    Anyway, from 2.5 lbs of wax I was able to make 20 generous votive-sized candles. (I think regular votives might be just a bit smaller that the pointy-topped votive mold I used.)
    Next year I'll buy another mold or two, and maybe purchase some extra wax too so I can make a bunch of holiday gifts. :)
     
  11. PerryBee

    PerryBee New Member

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    "Just wanted to add it there as a way to bring my bee year thread to a close." :sad: It has been a pleasure following it. :grin:
     
  12. brooksbeefarm

    brooksbeefarm Active Member

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    Hey, are any of you planning to get fancy and start coloring your bees wax? Also does anyone know if putting dye in the bees wax for color, would add a different smell to a burning candle? I've heard both yea and nay on this? Jack
     
  13. PerryBee

    PerryBee New Member

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    Sorry, can't help you there Jack. Never tried colouring or scenting. :smile:
     
  14. Omie

    Omie Active Member

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    Brooks, the only thing I've seen done so far is to dip the beeswax candles into colored beeswax only as the last couple of dips, to coat the outside with colored wax, not the whole candle. Not sure why, though it might save money on coloring and save space when making various colors...since one could have a large pot of natural wax, and then only smaller dipping pots of colored wax as a final finish. If you were pouring candles into molds i guess you could still make the basic candle in plain wax and then dip it in colored wax quickly twice once it's done.
    I have no knowledge about making solid colored beeswax candles.
    I admit nothing appeals to me as much as the natural color and scent of beeswax candles, and I'm not selling candles, so it's probably not an area that I will be experimenting with or learning about.
     
  15. PerryBee

    PerryBee New Member

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    Omie was right!

    I tried test burning my tea lites and was very unhappy with how they burned. I have let the lady I sold the first bunch to know that I will give her a refund and soon replace them. I contacted another candle company in my old home province and they explained to me that the wick that the "other" place had sold me was too thin. They have 3 different types of pre-wicked tabs designed especially for tea lites and beeswax, one for light beeswax, one for medium coloured beeswax and one for dark beeswax.
    I also bought another beeks tea lites (where's the whisper smilie?) and his burn great, and I immediately noticed the difference is wick thickness.
    Live and Learn. :oops:

    The first pics show the difference between the 2 burns (other keeps on the left). The next pics show how mine burnt down through the middle. The cups should be empty if they burn correctly. I am having all 3 different types sent for me to try.
    Lesson learned, don't always believe the "experts"...........................(ask Omie instead) :wink:

    Tea lites and cake 004.jpg Tea lites and cake 003.jpg Tea lites and cake 001.jpg Tea lites and cake 002.jpg
     
  16. brooksbeefarm

    brooksbeefarm Active Member

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    Geeez, didn't know there was so much to learn about making candles:roll:. I'll probably not get into the colored candles either, it would be intresting to know how they put 2,3,or 4 colors on one piece, like on a snowman, angle. ect. It would also be intresting to know what kind of wick they had back when they had to use candles for light ?? Jack
     
  17. pturley

    pturley New Member

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    This would be why candlemaking was considered a "Professional Occupation" with apprenticeships, etc., back then...
     
  18. Omie

    Omie Active Member

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    (hey wait a minute, is that an insult?) :lol:
    Yer crackin' me up perry. lol!


    Better ones. ;)
     
  19. PerryBee

    PerryBee New Member

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    I would never insult you Omie, NEVER!

    Now Iddee is another thing,.......and maybe tec,.......probably should add Jack,........hmmmmmm, give me a minute will you? :wink:
     
  20. Omie

    Omie Active Member

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    So Perry has shown it is indeed true what we hear- that beeswax candles need different, heavier wicks than the same size candles of paraffin. Let's all remember this!