Hey everyone, first post here on the forum. I've been lurking for a few weeks and this place is a wealth of information. Hopefully I can contribute useful information as I learn from the many of you more experienced chandlers. My wife and I have been making candles for less than a year (we stumbled into it and are obsessed now) and have recently started a small business that has received great local support. It all happened so fast and while I think we have a good candle, I want it to be great. This, as you all know, is no easy task. Here's what I've got going currently:
Coco 83/Easy Beads in a 10oz. straight-sided glass vessel filling to 9oz. Inside diameter is 3.06". Melting temp is 200-205 degrees as suggested by Accu-Blend and the distributors, and after mixing FO we are typically pouring at roughly 185-190 degrees. Tops always finish very smooth with a creamy white to slightly off-white color (depending on FO), and there's almost always very good jar adhesion with little or no pulling away (curing takes place in a room around 70-73 degrees). We've been very happy with this wax and while wicking was a total pain (shocker, I know), we've settled for now using CD9 from California Candle Supply (interestingly, I've seen most people trying a CD8 or CD10, but not many CD9, and this is just the right size IMO) and these have proved themselves consistently in each candle we offer with FO loads between 9-10% (typically using Candle Science, The Flaming Candle, Wellington, and Candles & Supplies FOs). The first burn is regularly at or very near the edge after 4 hours and does this fairly consistently with each 4-hour burn. It does tend to get a bit hotter and quicker in the final 1/3, but not too terrible, especially if you trim the wick properly. Cold throw is always good but hot throw, while always good, is often much better in certain scents than others. At this point I'm still not sure if it's FO % or wicking, but I'm leaning towards wicking because I've pushed it as much as 13% FO and it definitely has an improved HT with the higher percentage (interestingly, 13% is 1% higher than the recommended max for the coco83 and it had no sweating and burned pretty good). Candles cure for 2-3 days and seem to do fine. Seems like there's a lot more knowledge and experience with Soy curing (many people suggest weeks), but I've noticed little difference with the coconut whether it's a few days or a few weeks. This is probably more in the area of expertise of the scientists here, perhaps they can chime in. Anyway, that's where we're at for now.
Observation with question: I burned a coconut wax blend candle (I'm fairly certain with the CT/HT and stark white appearance that it's a coco/paraffin blend) that is 11oz. and double-wicked (cotton). The candle has an excellent CT and HT but it burns incredibly hot. The wax is reaching temps of 200+ degrees within a few hours, MP is to the edge in an hour, and the jar is coming it at 180-190 degrees using an infrared thermometer on the surface (5-15 degrees hotter than the recommended max of jar temp). It is promoted as having 55 hours of burn time and after 6 4-hour burns (24 hours) with proper wick trimming and at least 1 day in between burns, it's almost entirely gone (again, because of the extreme heat). Other than CT/HT, it's not a great candle. This has me speculating, however, that coco blends have a much better HT with higher temps. Not only does this candle throw well at such a high temp, but typically when I'm mixing FO in the 200 degree wax prior to pouring the fragrance blooms and fills the whole room. Anyone have any thoughts on this? Does it seem to others that coco loves hot temps to throw? If so, I'm wanting to balance the wicking to get a similar MP to what I have now but at about 20-30 degrees hotter. Perhaps an impossible task, but we'll see.
I have 20 candles poured into our 9oz. vessel with 10% FO (identical for each) with 20 wicks across 6 series (ECO, LX, CSN, HTP, Premier, and RRD). I will post photos and results of the testing in a week or two after they've all cured and I have time to test them appropriately. Hopefully this will shed a bit of light on the mysteries of wicking coconut/coco83/easy beads and lead us all a bit closer to the elusive almost-perfect candle. 🙂
Cheers to you all!