Jump to content

where to start


Recommended Posts

I have been trying to make candles but feel so scatter brained. When you first start out what do you suggest doing as far as testing a wax and scent. If you have a new wax and a scent you want to try how many jars do you pour of this to try it out. I mean I tried my GG palm with a vanilla scent and poured 3- 6.5 oz jars with 3 different size wicks. How do most people try out new stuff I feel as though I may be all wrong at what I am doing and that there might be a simpler or much better way. When testing wicks do you usually try several different types with your wax and scent or just one type? See what I mean I am so mixed up but that is nothing new. I go to get something in another room, get there and don't even know why I am there! Thank you.:confused:

Joy Have a great week end everybody the weather here in VA is just beautiful and so are the leaves

Link to comment
Share on other sites

OK I'll try...

When I first started making candles I used KY125 and HTP wicks and I got lucky and didnt have to change wax or wicks for YEARS!! But since we moved West the shipping became too high so I have been on the testing roller coaster for a while now.

Here is what I do...first search the wax you want to try like, say , 6006 just put 6006 in the search thingy and read read read. Then I search the kind of jar I want to use such as 8oz sq mason see what wicks are working for others. Then I search wicks. I like the CD wicks so I only use those. I have tested RRD and ECO and settled with the CD wicks.

When I test I know it takes about 6-7 oz wax to fill an 8oz tin. Then I figure the FO needed for one candle....I have the formula here somewhere....you measure that in grams. Then I try a wick I think will be close and pour the candle and let it cure for about 24 hrs then light it up.

Sometimes I will melt 1lb wax and use 1oz of FO and pour into a couple of tins or whatever I am testing.

The best thing to do is stick with one jar and one FO and try maybe 2 or so different wicks till you find the wick/jar/FO combo you like then move on to the next FO.

I started out with jelly jars they were easy and cheap.

HTH

tootie

Link to comment
Share on other sites

After a bit of playing around, I have a wick that I consider my "medium"(one wick size that works for most of my FO's in one size container)... I make a batch with 1 pound of wax and 1 ounce fo. I pour 1 8oz jj and 1 16oz WM with my "medium" wicks.

Then I take notes and adjust from there. Sometimes you can just tell right off the bat that it's the wrong wick. When this happens..I melt the candle down and repour adjusting the new wick size. When I finally get a good burn.. hopefully the scent throw is good.. If not, I make another batch (if I think the scent is worth it) using 1 and 1/4 ounce FO and start all over again..

Takes lots of notes, pictures if possible, and pay attention to every detail and write it down... That is what helps me the most!

HTH!

Emily

Link to comment
Share on other sites

After a bit of playing around, I have a wick that I consider my "medium"(one wick size that works for most of my FO's in one size container)... I make a batch with 1 pound of wax and 1 ounce fo. I pour 1 8oz jj and 1 16oz WM with my "medium" wicks.

Then I take notes and adjust from there. Sometimes you can just tell right off the bat that it's the wrong wick. When this happens..I melt the candle down and repour adjusting the new wick size. When I finally get a good burn.. hopefully the scent throw is good.. If not, I make another batch (if I think the scent is worth it) using 1 and 1/4 ounce FO and start all over again..

Takes lots of notes, pictures if possible, and pay attention to every detail and write it down... That is what helps me the most!

HTH!

Emily

Geez how could I forget the take notes part!!:embarasse Yes, take very good notes and pics if ya can.

I know you want to try everything but perfecting one at a time is best....you'll keep your sanity that way.;)

tootie

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I was just like you when I started out. I bought a kit from Michael's but that was the worse thing I could have ever done. I started researching on here, and just like you every question I came here and asked. Some of the people that were here then don't seem to post as much anymore but some of them got quite rude. I never thought I would get to where the experienced Chandlers were.

At first I poured a whole bunch of candles and tested them all at once, never took notes. Then I was getting mad and stopped making candles for a few months then came back.

So I poured one candle at a time. Like they said, one jar. One scent. If it didn't burn right I up'd one or went down one wick. On the third try if I didn't get a good result I went to a different brand of wicks and tested those. And so on and so on. This craft is basically a trial by elimination thing. You take one step at a time and go slow. There is no rushing when it comes to candle making. Believe me, I tried.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I just want to say THANK YOU to all that gave me advice. It will help me now the next time I go to make some more candles. I have been getting very impatient lately, I am sure you all know that feeling but some can handle it better than others. I will surely try what you advised here.;) Joy

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi Jwn! Geesh, you mean I'm not the only one out there that can get lost in closet? :laugh2: Now I feel a little better...lol

I just want to add to everyone's expert advice given.....I found it so helpful to come on a board where others were and its amazing the questions that are asked and answered and over and over too... No matter how many you have or how many times you have to ask, just keep asking away no matter how stupid you may think they are, as a question not asked is the stupid question....Thats how I've learned and continue to learn....;)

And I also find it extremely helpful to ask others what they may or may not use aside from what is written down somewhere that you read in a book, a page, or on a site....because not all that you read may be the right answer but a guide or starting point somewhere. I like asking what others do...And just because you may have the same wax and use the same wick as the other person, that persons formula may not even work for you but at least its a starting point (well it always is for me, lol) ....its all just trial and error and test, test, test test. It can be so frustrating but at the same time really exciting and the best part is when you find what works for you! Then you feel like you just hit the jackpot!

Trappeur

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Exactly....just because one wax wick combo works for me or you does NOT mean it will work for everyone. What we do when we test and post about it is give guidelines... starting points to make someone elses search a little easier. Nothing is ever written in stone. ;)

tootie

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Having reference sources at hand also helps. The wick recommendation tables at WickIt

http://www.wickit.net/index.html

and Wicks Unlimited

http://www.wicksunlimited.com/candle_wicks.php

are good places to bookmark. While the range of a wick can vary greatly depending on wax type and FO, they are good resources.

I don't pull wicks except on pillars. With container candles, unless the wicking is REALLY off, I don't know until I get near the end of a candle whether the wick is gonna work or not. With pillars, however, you can pull the wick, relevel the top (very important!) then test on.

I also found instead of buying a whole bunch of different wicks, I did better buying one kind and testing it thoroughly before switching. I came upon CDNs early on and haven't looked back since.

I have an index card file for notes - someone here suggested that and I really like that system! Each container I use gets a card. Once I establish the approximate size wick that generally works for a particular jar, I start listing the FOs AND suppliers from whom I bought the particular FO (vanilla is not vanilla is not vanilla...) and the size wick that works best in THAT container with THAT FO. I generally make candles in batches, so for every batch, there is a card which has the details - date, wax, wax batch number from the case, supplier, amounts, how many of what I poured, etc. That way, I can trace back each candle to its origin. I LOVE my card file!!!

Once I think I have the testing completed (successive burns 1 hour per inch of diameter, extinguish, cool completely, trim wick, repeat) until the candle is consumed), I powerburn a tester to make sure it will not overheat (containers) or blow out (pillars) even if a FOOL burns it from start to finish without trimming the wick, turning the candle, etc. If it passes that torture test, then I know I've hit on what works for that wick and that FO in that jar with that wax. If ANYTHING about that equation changes - additives, different supplier, different wax, different container, we go back to square one. Unless you always use the exact same FO, wax, container and wick, testing never really ends. It's just a part of making candles. Even though it's kind aggravating, I find it interesting. HTH :)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Very good advice Stella!! I love the index card idea. I will try to adopt that idea. I always seem to loose my notes somehow or other.

I also do not pull wicks. I dont feel you can get an accurate test that way. Most containers need to be tested ALL the way down. I also do the power burn test too.

tootie

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Okay for me...we do get accurate results pulling the wick...if my candle is not doing what it needs to be doing in 30 or 45 min...different wick...I might go through 2 or 3 wicks...but like I said on the original post After I decide which wick I pour another and test all the way down. Maybe it won't work for others but it is perfect for us. Since your new at this try it...and see if it works..and when your wax gets closer to the bottom...or maybe your power burning and have a pretty deep melt pool your wick will falls over ,big deal let it harden put a different wick or keep what you had and continue to test it! We get accurate results doing it this way, this technique is as important as the heat gun! ( thats pretty important) HTH! LeeAnn~

Link to comment
Share on other sites

if my candle is not doing what it needs to be doing in 30 or 45 min

Which is...? Achieving full melt pool as you stated in another thread - cause I sure don't agree that a standard JJ should achieve FMP in soy wax in 45 minutes!!! *faint* Once a container candle has been burned, inserting another wick cannot give you accurate testing results because the level of the candle has changed. Perhaps you can guesstimate because you are more experienced, but I don't think the method you describe is best practice for testing container candles nor could I recommend it to a person new to candlemaking.

Save the wick pulling for pillars and be sure to relevel the top of the pillar before lighting the new wick.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Which is...? Achieving full melt pool as you stated in another thread - cause I sure don't agree that a standard JJ should achieve FMP in soy wax in 45 minutes!!! *faint* Once a container candle has been burned, inserting another wick cannot give you accurate testing results because the level of the candle has changed. Perhaps you can guesstimate because you are more experienced, but I don't think the method you describe is best practice for testing container candles nor could I recommend it to a person new to candlemaking.

Save the wick pulling for pillars and be sure to relevel the top of the pillar before lighting the new wick.

First I do not pour in JJ and do not pour 100% soy, I have but not my normal Blend. And I said if my candle is not performing how I want it to with my wick in 45 min to 60 tops I change my wick. That is more than enough time we need to figure my fragrance wick combo....Second I also stated at the bottom the wick would fall over...and again..thats why I said when I figure which wick I like then pour a new one and burn all the way down!(on a few stubborn scents it might take two candles doing it that way) Not sure why thats so hard to understand. But hey different strokes for different folks....You may not tell a newbie that method but that method I was tought when I first started by an experienced Candle maker and candle supply company and it was one of the best tips I learned...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Sorry if I misinterpreted your reply #14 in the thread below

http://www.craftserver.com/forums/showthread.php?t=77680&page=2 where you stated:

It varies a little but 45 to an hour tops for a melt pool across the top(for us).

The container being discussed there was a soy wax standard JJ container candle, so I assumed that was what you were talking about there and here also...

if my candle is not doing what it needs to be doing in 30 or 45 min...different wick...I might go through 2 or 3 wicks...

If it works for you, great. I simply have a big problem with the accuracy of that wick testing method for containers (for the reasons stated) and the length of time you claim it takes for a FMP (in ??? size container of ??? wax).

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Normally I give mine several burns before determining a wick size. I have a few FO/wick combinations that I don't get a good burn on until about half way down the jar. The heat buildup in the jar seems to help melt the wax faster. So a wick that may not have looked good at first, sometimes will catch up, halfway through the jar.

The only times I switched wicks was if I was way off base on the one I chose. If that happened, I would melt the candle back down, dump the wax back into the pot, wipe the jar and rewick it, repour the wax and let it set back up and retest. I tried just yanking the wick once, but could not get the new ones to stand upright long enough for a good burn.

There are lots of ways to test, you have to do what works best for you, what you think is going to give you the best results.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Sorry if I misinterpreted your reply #14 in the thread below

http://www.craftserver.com/forums/showthread.php?t=77680&page=2 where you stated:

The container being discussed there was a soy wax standard JJ container candle, so I assumed that was what you were talking about there and here also...

If it works for you, great. I simply have a big problem with the accuracy of that wick testing method for containers (for the reasons stated) and the length of time you claim it takes for a FMP (in ??? size container of ??? wax).

Agree to disagree!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Such great info you learn here from all the old hands!....Never ceases to amaze me....

And Stella, you sure have a nice way presenting yourself and giving out advice...You make it so simple to understand....Love your style with people even if they ask a million times the same question because that would be me too.....

Its people like you and yes all you others out there that make people want to come back to the board to learn...

Trappeur

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...