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Pillar candle making questions

Posted by Lisa_in_PA (My Page) on
Sun, Jan 9, 05 at 9:30

Hello all,

I have been making pillar candles for years with mixed results. Lately, I have been coming up with candles that I have been really pleased with, but still have a few things to iron out.

First of all, I am using Yaley Medium Zinc Core Wire wicking for pillar candles that are 2"-3" in diameter. I find it works really well with the 2" candles molds (almost the entire candle burns) but with the 3" pillars, it tends to burn straight down the middle. I am reluctant to try a larger wick for fear of having a fire. Any ideas?

Secondly, I have 4 different pillar molds and still have not mastered the art of leveling off the bottoms of my pillars when they are released from the molds. I have tried heating a pie plate and rubbing the bottom of the pillar on it to get a more even bottom, but sometimes this results in revealing the wick, and causing a bump on the bottom where the wick is. I have even gone as far as digging out the wick a little with a knife to avoid this, but I think there must be another way!

Lastly, I hardly ever buy wax. I mostly use leftover wax from candles that didn't burn, and find I have access to an endless supply from friends and family who have candles laying around that didn't burn properly. I recently also found out that my local recycling center gets a lot of wax and is willing to let me have whatever I want. Food for thought...

Thanks for your ideas...

Lisa


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Pillar candle making questions

I didn't want you to think that no one read this, so I am replying. I only make container candles- never made a pillar or anything like that. Sorry, I can't help you. If you don't get an answer here, try thescentreview.com . You have to register (keeps out the spammers) but it is free, and for anyone who makes candles it is a very valuable forum.
Susan


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RE: Pillar candle making questions

I make pillar candles, and you have to use a thicker wick for pillar candles. You should keep the wick trimmed short while burning, and if there is any black smoke then trim it shorter. That way the flame will stay in control too, so you won't have to worry so much about fires.
Any candle can easily start a fire, so obviously should never ever be left unattended.
Also, when you're talking about pillar molds, the bottom is the top right? Just want to make sure we're talking about the same end. It worked out easier for me when I used to not know better and thought the top was the top, because the bottom was always level!
Anyway, try nail clippers to trim the wick at the bottom, digging a little below the surface.
Good way to save money and recycle wax. I buy plan wax though so I can add my own scents and other additives a lot though. I find the scents are most expensive.
Too bad this forum seems so inactive, we have recently moved into a much bigger house and soon plan to set up a candle making space in the basement so I won't have to do it in the kitchen any more. I have taken long periods of time away from candlemaking simply because of the mess it makes in my kitchen! They're fantastic for Christmas and other gifts though, and I use them all over the house to decorate.
There are some good sites online, including the one below, which has a chatroom that seems active enough in the evenings with die hard candle makers that are more than willing to answer any questions you have. I go there often when I have problems or just want new ideas.
good luck!

Here is a link that might be useful: great candle site with chatroom


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RE: Pillar candle making questions

Hi,

I used to make candles all the time but stopped after not having enough room in my old house. Now that I'm in a new home with a FULL basement, I can set up a workshop.

For pillar candles - are you talking about the bottom of the candle - the top part of the open mold? When I used to make mine the bottom would always have a depression when the wax cooled. To make it even I'd keep a supply of wax the same color and scent and use it to fill up the depression after the first pour cooled. This allowed me to cover the bottom of the wick, and also make sure the bottom of the candle was exactly level. Sometimes you have to pour that little bit more than once - it depends on how big the depression was when you began.

Good Luck!

Ken


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