When it comes to candle making there are a few tried and true items that you are going to need in order to create beautiful hand poured candles. This blog will focus on possible heat sources you will want to use.
Turkey Roasters- Turkey roasters work great for melting slabs of candle wax. On average, turkey roasters can hold 20-25 pounds of candle wax at a time, so this is a great solution if you are making big batches of candles. The average cost of a turkey roaster is anywhere from $40-$100. But, keep in mind that these turkey roasters do go on sale around the holidays, so you might be able to find a bargain. When melting wax in a turkey roaster you will want to keep the temperature set at 175 degrees Fahrenheit. You will also want to make sure that you have the bottom portion of the pan filled with about ¼” water. If you do not fill this area with water, you will notice that the wax will not melt properly. Also, you will risk burning up your turkey roaster and rearing it useless. But, remember ¼” is the magic amount. Using more than this amount will result in having water bubble up and entering your work space. Try not to let any water enter the melting wax. Water is waxes worst enemy, and water in your melted wax will result with holes in your finished candles.
If you do get water in your wax, or you notice water in wax; put your turkey roaster on the low setting and keep it uncovered. This will allow the water to evaporate out. When wax is made into slabs, the manufacturer uses water to cool the wax. Sometimes, water can get trapped in the wax as it cools, and this creates water pockets. The water will evaporate; just keep an eye on the wax.
Besides working with a single pour wax, if you choose to also make votives and or pillars, you will want to have a second turkey roaster for this wax. It is very important that you keep the waxes separated. If you do not, chances are your single wax will require a second pour. But, do not stress too much if a small amount of votive/pillar wax gets into your single pour wax. A little bit of the waxes mixing should not give you any major issues.
Stove/Hot Plate- Besides the turkey roaster, you will also need a secondary heat source. This is because you will need to maintain your melted wax temperature (or pouring temperature) as you add colorants, additives, or fragrance oils. A stove or hot plate are great secondary heat sources.
By using a 13” x 9” cake pan you can create the same double boiler situation like you have in your turkey roaster. This time fill the bottom of the cake pan ½” with water. Then, set the stove or hot plate to a low to medium heat setting. Place the cake pan with water on top of the burner and allow the water to heat.
Ideally, a stove works best for this situation, especially if you also warm your candle containers before pouring the hot candle wax into them. Warming your containers will help to prevent jump lines from occurring in your candles. Jump lines occur when the melted wax cools too quickly in your jars. Warming your candle jars levels the “temperature playing field” if you will, allowing the wax to cool in its own natural time by decreasing the gap in temperature between the hot wax and warmed jars.