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3/26/12

Survival Candle Update


A book of matches fits perfectly inside the top of the mason jar survival candles we posted about a while back. Makes sure that you have a light on hand for getting the candle going.

I've put one of these in each vehicle and have a box stored for use at home. We've also made some scented ones that see fairly regular use...it's been almost 2 months and they still have about 1/2 of the wax left in them.

Fun project--give it a shot if you haven't yet! Here's the original instructions.

14 comments :

  1. UGLY ROOSTER

    Note to anyone doing this for the first time...
    If you are reclaiming wax and combining, it may be a good idea to separate groups of wax and do multiple batches. Otherwise the color and scents will mix. You may end up with mauve colored candles that smell like vomit. Been there, done that.

    Also, thanks T-Blog, for the "cardboard-tin can-wax" portable stove idea. Me and the boys did some for a home school project. Man, were they amazed by the huge flame. I was equally impressed. Disposable, yes. But very useful and reloadable on the fly with scrounged components.

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    1. Ya, vomit scented candles are never very popular. The bulk bags of soy wax flakes are pretty affordable and high quality - generally the way to go.

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  2. i've made a case of 12 candles and they burn really well.

    make sure you use the correct width of wick, i use a thicker cotton core wick that can handle soy wax. the thinner wicks that come premade at the hobby story will NOT work well for soy wax.

    i'm going to be making these in bulk and giving them away to friends and family that haven't been preparing so they can at least have light in an emergency.

    i don't put any fragrance in my candles because attracting outside attention in grid down situations should be avoided.

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    1. The wicks I used work totally fine, but the link from RomeroNJuliet below should guide you to the "best" option.

      I wouldn't use scents in survival candles either! The ones we have are for use around the house--my wife likes scented candles.

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  3. RomeroNJulietMarch 26, 2012

    Candlescience website has a handy little "Wick Calculator" at this site: http://www.candlescience.com/learning/wick-guide.php It recommends 3 of the MANY wick varieties based on your type of wax and diameter of vessel.

    I tried this project and have been happy with the results. I bought 10 lbs. of 444 soy wax (since I live in a warmer climate). Total cost for the wax was $25.75, which seemed pretty good after shopping around (and after amazon ran out of the one that Mr. Wolf linked, lol). I'm also making gifts of these candles to non-prepper family. I bought a set of decorator mason jars which actually look fairly classy. Though the ones I've been testing are all poured into recycled pickle jars. Less attractive, but functional and cheap. I enjoy saving the lids..efficient way of extinguishing the candle, and allows it to solidify without the threat of a mess. Great project!

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  4. Are you going to separate the matches from the candle in case the wax melts in the heat?

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    1. Good thought. The soy wax has a melting point of around 120-130 degrees if I remember correctly, which could certainly happen in a vehicle during the summer. I'll duct tape those to the side of the candle instead.

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  5. I just followed your article and made some great beeswax candles. Here's a tip--use baby food jars! For about 50 cents a can you can get some fairly large jars of baby food. If you don't have a baby or if you don't like baby food just dump it down the drain--it'll still be cheaper than buying empty jars!

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    1. Rather than dumping the baby food buy banana baby food and use it to make banana pancakes or bread or something.

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  6. Saw a good video today using Muphys Beeswax hair dressing. A very small amount burned for 19 minutes and provided quite a lot of light. Get this product at your local Dollar store or big lots in hair care Dept.

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  7. I find Mason jars to be pretty valuable in canning so I'd recycle a jar from a commercially canned source. So much is in plastic these days but the small salsa or cheese sauce jars would work. These jars can't be used in canning but are perfect for storing dried goods and are larger than baby food jars.

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  8. Never thought about something so simple as placing the matches inside the jar. Thanks!

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  9. A candle is a must-have.
    I was caught up in the mountains outside Santa Fe once, up above the Ski area...had to spend the night unplanned...it was summer but a hail storm had come in late afternoon and I was a bit wet. Got to shivering pretty good, but by covering up w/ a tarp while sitting down, and an 8 hour 'plumbers' candle going it warmed things up enough that all shivering stopped.

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  10. Another suggestion is to put a piece of sandpaper between the jar lid and the ring and then use stick matches. If matches are kept outside the jar, you would also need to protect them
    from water.

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