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Weak Flames... help!


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OK, I am a newbie, so please bear with me. I have been trying to wick my 16oz apothecary jar. The CD 22 was too small so I went to double wicking with 2 CD12's. The entire first half of the candle burned beautifully, great scent throw, full melt pool in about 1.5 hrs (seemed a little fast), good size flame, but half way through the candle the flames got weaker and weaker until they finally fizzled out. Do you know what would be causing this? I'm not sure where to go from here as far as wicking. I am using EL Millenium blend Soy and 1 oz of FO. I only used 4 drops of color.

The weak flames tell me wick up? but with a full mp in under two hours on a 4" diameter candle, I'm thinking it would be too much?

One possibility is that because I remelted this candle to rewick and then repoured, is it possible that the fo settled and is clogging the wick??

Any suggestions would be appreciated... thanks!

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It sounds like double wicking is your cure but with smaller wick sizes than the CD 12's. CD's get hot fast, at any rate. I have not experimented with apothecary jars of that size but just know from experience with other jars that smaller wick sizes are better when it comes to double wicking. Maybe size down a bit with two wicks... Apothecaries are known to be wide so you probably can't hope to use one wick, at any rate.

I had a problem with my votives a while back and there is a lady I buy CD wicks from on Ebay whom I swear by- she sells samples of CD and LX wicks. If it weren't for her, I would never have solved my votive issues. Now I have clean-burning votives all the time because I was able to buy quantities that allowed me to test without breaking my pocketbook- a minimum of one wick per sample at around 6 - 8 cents each plus minimal shipping.

Good luck!:cheesy2:

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Ah, this is the tricky part.

The problem is lack of oxygen. Once you get down low inside the jar like that, the two wicks are struggling for oxygen. There's no really simple answer other than playing around. Try and find wicks that are hot enough to burn good at the top, but not too hot once you get way down inside the jar. Wicks that are too big can also drown out because they require more oxygen, and there's just not much there.

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How about a quart size widemouth jar? I double wick it with 2 large zinc wicks. The flame is good until midway then apparently it has problems. I've seen it go out- the flame gets weak. Should I wick with 3 wicks? I can't imagine using larger wicks because the wicks are already pretty wide. This is more of an aesthetic issue- and for customers, too- those who don't want to watch the candle constantly to see if it goes out or not (especially on one side).

Thanks !

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3 things I can think of....

1. the type of scent you are using...I have scents that use much hotter and I mean much hotter wicks than other scents.

2. Blending thoroughly could be a problem. You wanna blend the daylights out of it...best suggestion is to go to home depot or some paint store and get yourself a metal (not plastic) paint mixer that hooks onto an electric drill. They come in different sizes so you can use your judgement on which to get.

3. too much oil can cause it, though what you said (1oz pp or less than 6%) is not really that heavy, so probably not the answer. However, maybe adding some additive could solve the problem.

W/ that said...welcome to the wonderful world of candle making...keep track of all your variables and eventually, if you keep good records, you'll get r done. Through my years of experience, I've found groups of scents that are very similar in regards to burn characteristics to the point that if I test a new jar, I will know that scents a,b,c,d and e will need the same wick size as f. That way I only test f and know the others will work. But, until you've tested a,b,c,d,e and f enough times to conclusively see they are similar, you have to test each scent to see its properties.

Good luck to you and remember to keep it fun...:D

dave

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2. Blending thoroughly could be a problem. You wanna blend the daylights out of it...best suggestion is to go to home depot or some paint store and get yourself a metal (not plastic) paint mixer that hooks onto an electric drill. They come in different sizes so you can use your judgement on which to get.

Sorry......but WTH???? That is about the biggest waste of time, money and effort I've ever heard of. It is absolutely 100% not necessary. And talk about a PITA. I don't think a single one of us would still be here making candles if that were needed.

To make sure your oil is blended well, you need to make sure you add oil at a high enough temperature and stir well with something with surface area to actually move the oil around throughout the wax. Paint sticks, large spoons, etc. Lots of options, but a drill powered paint mixer is not one of them.

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3 things I can think of....

1. the type of scent you are using...I have scents that use much hotter and I mean much hotter wicks than other scents.

2. Blending thoroughly could be a problem. You wanna blend the daylights out of it...best suggestion is to go to home depot or some paint store and get yourself a metal (not plastic) paint mixer that hooks onto an electric drill. They come in different sizes so you can use your judgement on which to get.

3. too much oil can cause it, though what you said (1oz pp or less than 6%) is not really that heavy, so probably not the answer. However, maybe adding some additive could solve the problem.

W/ that said...welcome to the wonderful world of candle making...keep track of all your variables and eventually, if you keep good records, you'll get r done. Through my years of experience, I've found groups of scents that are very similar in regards to burn characteristics to the point that if I test a new jar, I will know that scents a,b,c,d and e will need the same wick size as f. That way I only test f and know the others will work. But, until you've tested a,b,c,d,e and f enough times to conclusively see they are similar, you have to test each scent to see its properties.

Good luck to you and remember to keep it fun...:D

dave

LMAO, this is a first.

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I am so glad to see this post - I have been testing 16 oz apothecaries and experience the same situation 1/2 way thru the candle. Great burn & hot throw for the first half of the candle then weak, wimpy flames until it drowns out at the bottom 1/2. I have been making candles for over 5 years and still have not successfully tackled double wicking. :( My last failed test was 2 - 51z's. I never considered wicking down but after reading this post I am going to try it. At this point I have nothing to lose. (Sorry if I hijaked the thread)

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I add my fragrance oil as soon as I pull the wax off the heat at approximated 175 w/ a plastic spoon. Do you think it might be better to melt and mix f/o at a higher temp?

Thank you all for your great suggetions so far! :)

I don't think you need to add the fo any higher than 175 degrees. Just make sure you mix well and while it is cooling, mix some more until you have reached your desired pouring temperature. I use wooden spoons, but a plastic spoon should not be a problem for mixing.

:)

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Have you tried 2 HTP 104's yet? or any HTP's with El Soy?

I've been testing the 16 oz apothecary on off. They are a big pain! I've decided not to carry them and just stick with 10oz squares & 8 oz tumblers.

VS

Well the only problem is I wanted to save on shipping so I have ordered 2 dozen and I would hate for them to be a waste! I am going to try today to wick with CD10's and see how that goes.

I have not tried HTP's yet, but I heard they were basically the same as the CD's with the exception of them being produced here rather than germany. Is this not true?

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OK breath deep, sigh.... laugh....breath deep....Images of the middle finger...ok sigh...

I see some people thought I was talking about the mixers that they put the paint cans in and it shakes it like a Shaker on Easter Sunday. To you all, no, this is not what I am talking about...

What I am talking about is what is used for drywall or paint. They measure anywhere from less than a ft to a few feet. They come in different styles too which there is one that is patented and blends so much better than any other out there.

Anyway, they fit into a standard 3/8" drill, one that you can buy for like $15, or you may already have one, the mixer is about $6 for a small one.

I made stands from wood to hold the drills in various sizes. I have sizes for the small pourers and I have sizes for 100qt stock pots that I had ball valves welded into.

I can then weigh my blended, hot wax out, add the color and scent I need, set the pot under the thing I made (or move the mixer over the pot if its the large pots) and turn on the drill and its mixing. Then I move on to the next batch and don't have to sit there churning a pot. Instead of buying these very expensive blending melters, I made them for a little bit of nothing.

I've been doing this now for 7 years and ever since I started using the little mixers, I have never bothered to sit and stir over and over again, when these mixers do it so much faster and better. You ever had little flakes show in your wax that is the additive not blended too well, especially beeswax?

I am not saying you have to get one of these or you'll never blend it well. But, having one makes it a lot easier. To this day, when I am testing a new scent, I'll use the small mixer with my hand held drill and mix it up in less than a minute.

My whole point to begin with was that you need to blend your mix well or problems can arise. Since I make candles on a larger scale, I guess I forgot what it was like to make only a few candles.

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What I am talking about is what is used for drywall or paint. They measure anywhere from less than a ft to a few feet. They come in different styles too which there is one that is patented and blends so much better than any other out there.

Anyway, they fit into a standard 3/8" drill, one that you can buy for like $15, or you may already have one, the mixer is about $6 for a small one.

I've been doing this now for 7 years and ever since I started using the little mixers, I have never bothered to sit and stir over and over again, when these mixers do it so much faster and better. You ever had little flakes show in your wax that is the additive not blended too well, especially beeswax?

My whole point to begin with was that you need to blend your mix well or problems can arise. Since I make candles on a larger scale, I guess I forgot what it was like to make only a few candles.

I knew exactly what your talking about but I still don't think he needs that. Yes he needs to make sure his FO is fully in with the wax or he'll have problems but that would be weeping puddles of FO & no amount of beatings will change that. The most I ever stir any FO is 2 minutes & the only thing I ever need is a spoon, and that's just because when I 1st started someone placed a bug in my head that I "NEED" to stir for 2 minutes. It's just habit now.

I've only been doing this for 6 years but never had a problem with my additives or beeswax not melting all the way. I melt my wax with my additives & never see a problem like your describing. (especially beeswax??) There is only 1 additive I melt separately (translucent crystals) & I hardly ever make candles that require this additive.

OK now back to the problem, you've gotten some great suggestion. The 16 oz apothecary jar's are tall which leads to this problem.(the oxygen thing some else said was right on) If you take a 10 oz apothecary you probably wouldn't have seen it. If you saw a full mp in 1 hour the wick was probably to big. Also which FO was it, there are a few VERY heavy FO's that at 1oz per lb is just too much. This is different from a FO not incorporating in the wax. When a FO isn't blending you will see what looks like water pool on the bottom of your pour pot, that will also show up on your finished candle & look like colored water. 16 oz apothecary jars are one of the hardest jars to wick since you said your new to this you may want to put those aside & start with some 8 oz canning jars. Those only take one wick & are much easier than 16 oz apothecary jars.

hth,

Karen B

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Again, thank you for all of your help. The particular oil I used this time was a cinnabon fragrance from Fragrance Oil Heaven. It was nice smelling with good throw, but not what I would describe as a very overwhelming or heavy oil. I stir in my fo immediately after taking off heat with a long platic spoon and stir for 2 minutes... then I add my liquid dye and stir another 2-3 minutes. I also stir every five min or so until almost slushy and ready to pour. I found this temp best to get a smooth top. I currectly use the 8 oz square mason and have sucessfully wicked it and have no problems, so this is just the next step and to be honest I thought I was ordering the 10 oz Apoths when I received the 16's. I have made another candle and wicked it with 2 cd 10's and space the wicks just slightly farther apart in hopes they will not pull too much O2 from each other. I will keep everyone informed on my success after a test burn. Thanks for all of your help and suggestions!

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