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Gas jet wick?!


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Hi all, and I want to first say thank you to all of the posters, new and veteran, for all of the information I have gathered here.  I am grateful.


I am new to candle making, but while doing wick tests, I had a very strange (to me) thing happen:


I was on the first light after a 10-day cure. 

The wax is a 6046/4625 blend. 

There is UV inhibitor @ 1/2 tsp per pound.

There is no fragrance oil.

The container is an 8-ounce tin ( 3 1/8" Diameter x 2 1/8" Deep).

This wick is a zinc 51-32-18.  It was a step up from the previously tested 44-36-18 that was "almost there."

There was an Eco 8 wick and an HTP 83 in this same batch test.

The ignitor is an electric plasma lighter.


So, when I got the ignitor within an inch of the zinc-wicked candle, a flame shot up like there was a buried gas jet in the wax!  I quickly pulled away, and it stopped immediately without lighting the wick.  I tried a second time, and the same thing happened.  I'm not too bright, so I went in for a third time, and it lit like normal.  The other 2 candles in this test batch didn't behave in any unusual way, and this candle has continued to perform well throughout the testing beyond the shocking event. 


Is this a common thing that has just never happened to me in decades of using candles?

Is this a common thing in candle-making?

Is this a bad wick that had some kind of foreign material on the wick?


Anyone have similar experiences? 


I appreciate any guidance.




Edited by loriemccl
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Zinc is used in fireworks, and can have shocking flames when superheated. 


use a”normal” lighter and I bet the zinc wick performs like it is supposed to 


check out YouTube for zinc and fire videos. Pretty sure you make zinc oxide, so I hope you didn’t breathe the smoke. 😬

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How does zinc react to fire?
ZINC METAL is a reducing agent. Reacts violently with oxidants causing fire and explosion hazards [Handling Chemicals Safely 1980. ... Zinc powder or dust in contact with acids forms hydrogen. The heat generated by the reaction is sufficient to ignite the hydrogen evolved [Lab.




Zinc Oxide fumes are fine, white, odorless particles which are formed when Zinc or Zinc alloys are heated to high temperatures (such as in welding, galvanizing and smelting). * Zinc Oxide is on the Hazardous Substance List because it is regulated by OSHA and cited by ACGIH, DOT, NIOSH, DEP and EPA.



normally, the zinc in a wick is a core to keep I upright.  It does not burn, well burn completely. You set the metal on fire with a plasma torch. 😉

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  • 2 months later...
On 11/21/2021 at 12:34 PM, loriemccl said:



I will check out all of those.  I never considered the zinc + plasma combo.



We’re you ever able to recreate that phenomenon? 
would be interesting to see a video of it - made safely of course.  

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