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Let's talk Candles

Discussion in 'General Survival and Preparedness' started by Motomom34, Oct 18, 2014.

  1. Motomom34

    Motomom34 Moderator Moderator Site Supporter++

    Candles are a form of light but can also be used for heat and cooking. Yes heat and cooking.

    Light: you can use basically any candle for this. Please note most "survival sites" recommend unscented candles or those expensive emergency candles. I have read that one can use the prayer candles that are nice because they are enclosed and long burning. You can find prayer candles in you local grocer or dollar tree.

    Prayer candles-http://Bulk St. Jude Glass Prayer candles, 8" at DollarTree.com

    Survival candles- Amazon.com : Coghlans 36 HOURS SURVIVAL CANDLE, 6 OZ : Camping First Aid And Safety Equipment : Sports & Outdoors

    I personally have a variety of candles. Since I burn candles daily I tend to have more scented then unscented but my stock is always rotating. You should rotate your candle supply, all of your supply, especially if you live in real hot conditions that the candles could melt or warp. Or if you live in a damp area, this can affect your candle. Cool dry storage is the best.

    I have been reading about soy candles that you can make. Since I am thrifty, these soy candles not only can be used for light but also moisturizer. Plus oils can be added to your soy candles when making so you have light, moisturizer and aroma- therapy. These are usually called soy massage candles- shea butter is also added, which is good stuff.

    Soy Massage Candle Recipes with essential oils | Naturally Organic Skin Care

    Since thrifty and dual purpose is something I strive for here is the recipe for how to make a Crisco candle. I am sure it has been posted before but this simple dual purpose item bears repeating.

    One question I do have regarding a Crisco candle is if you use rancid Crisco does it smell or is it bad?

    Also there are other items to make candles please chime in-

    did someone say chapstick? chapstick candle | Field & Stream

    Candles for Heat and cooking:

    For all you that live in cold areas please have a candle in your car for warmth in case you get stranded. Don't leave the candle in your car over the summer it will melt. I have jar or tin candles in our vehicles, safer and easier then wax dripping all over.

    If your power goes out you can be in a tent inside your home with a candle burning to keep from freezing. Please use safety rules at all time, don't sleep with the candle burning while sleeping.

    Hear is the youtube video for a clay pot heater & votive candles. I am sure this has been posted before but it is good to have it repeated, though there is debate about the effectiveness and environmental impact of this.

    Cooking with candles- it can be done big candle or tealights, all will work.
    Cooking With Three Candle Flames | Self-Sufficiency

    Please note there is a youtube video that shows a guy putting his tealights around his burner because his gas is out, personally I thing this is unsafe cause some people could forget to make sure their gas is off. Cook with candles safely.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 25, 2015
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  2. ditch witch

    ditch witch resident bacon hoarder Site Supporter+

    I made not one but two of those flower pot heaters. We took temperature readings an inch from it, 6 inches from it and a foot away, using 1, 2, and 4 candles under them. We also tried it with both pots fired up. Basically any heat radiating off of it stopped registering 2 inches away from the pot. It makes a nice hand warmer as the clay pots get warm and you can lay your hands on them, but they will not heat a room. I still have them and put one on my desk in the winter because my hands get cold and I like to wrap them around the thing, but even sitting less than a foot away from it I don't feel ANY heat coming off it. So there you go, a less than glowing testimonial from someone who has actually done it. ;)
  3. VHestin

    VHestin Farm Chick

    I make my own candles. They can heat food already cooked, but it takes a while.
    Motomom34 likes this.
  4. ditch witch

    ditch witch resident bacon hoarder Site Supporter+

    I made a lot of candles as a kid. I was always making something or other. But my candles involved buying wax and wicks and scents at the craft store and in the long run we could have bought candles for half what it cost to make them. Recently I've been using some beeswax candles, so yet another reason I want to add bees to our place. Having beeswax available would make it worthwhile to make them again. For now I just store those 15 hour votives for when the power goes out, although we pull out the battery candles and lights first (or just move around in the dark) so I've yet to use them.
    Motomom34 likes this.
  5. VHestin

    VHestin Farm Chick

    I don't use scents, and for wicks I use regular cotton thread. And can always get those huge slabs of paraffin wax at Michael's craft store with a 40% or 50% off coupon, to make it more economical.
  6. ditch witch

    ditch witch resident bacon hoarder Site Supporter+

    Just thread like sewing thread? I was eyeballing cotton string thinking I could wax it and use that but I hadn't looked around to see if that was a good idea or not.
  7. VHestin

    VHestin Farm Chick

    Not sewing thread, more like knitting/crocheting yarn, but the somewhat thin kind. I especially use it for my hand-dipped ones. When I make tealights, I 'cheat' and buy a bag of unscented white ones, and pop the wax out and save it for future use. Then I have the tealight wicks and container/mold all ready to go. And for votive type candles, I use toilet paper rolls as molds. Once the candle has 'set', I tear the roll off and throw it in the woodstove. And I don't have to pay $20 for the stupid mold
  8. kellory

    kellory An unemployed Jester, is nobody's fool. Banned

    I don't see any point really to rotating candles. If they melt or warp, just recast them. Or dip them. Use the same wicks and wax, just melt and pour.
  9. NotSoSneaky

    NotSoSneaky former supporter

    General Wax
    9" processional tapers $0.47 ea , $0.31 ea if you buy a case.

    I've purchased candles from them before with good results and from time to time at Wall-Mart when I can snag a box or two on sale.
    Never paid more than $0.50 each.
    Motomom34 likes this.
  10. Motomom34

    Motomom34 Moderator Moderator Site Supporter++

    Well that is a disappointing report. I had concerns about the toxic potential. I worry because manufactures are always putting stuff in products that could hurt you. I know a clay pot should be a clay pot but you never know.

    I wonder if you could use a bigger pot with a bigger candle? Currently all my clay pots have plants in them
  11. Motomom34

    Motomom34 Moderator Moderator Site Supporter++

    Do you have the means and knowledge to recast? Also, I swear the wicks or the candles change. Example- I have holiday candles that I drag out every year for decoration, I usually burn the wicks some for good luck. IMO by the third year, the candles were not burning as well as they did year one. Granted these candles are cheap but it seems like they changed.
  12. Motomom34

    Motomom34 Moderator Moderator Site Supporter++

    When using them to heat food what did you use? Burner from stove? Can/hobo stove? Marshmallows over a flame. Could you share your personal experiences?
  13. kellory

    kellory An unemployed Jester, is nobody's fool. Banned

    Yes. Casting candles is very simple. As discribed, you can use toilet paper rolls, or any smooth metal tube. (A touch of heat, and they slide right out.) Sand casting was a common thing for kids to do, both in class, and at home. Dipping candles is very easy, and a simple grid type hanger will let you dip a hundred candles or more at a time. It is very easy to make candles from melted wax, left over stubs, garage sale candles, or raw chunk wax from Michael's. Wicks are the hardest part. If you have a good supply of wick material, the rest is simplicity itself.
    Motomom34 likes this.
  14. ditch witch

    ditch witch resident bacon hoarder Site Supporter+

    Maybe if you used a 20 gallon pot with a small bonfire under it.... :D
    Better off getting those "Hot Hands" packs and throwing a few in the bottom of your sleeping bag IMO.
    Motomom34 likes this.
  15. kellory

    kellory An unemployed Jester, is nobody's fool. Banned

    How To Make Perfect Dipped Beeswax Taper Candles …:
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  16. kellory

    kellory An unemployed Jester, is nobody's fool. Banned

    Candles in the Sand:
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  17. kellory

    kellory An unemployed Jester, is nobody's fool. Banned

    Making Candles with a Pringles Tube!:
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  18. kellory

    kellory An unemployed Jester, is nobody's fool. Banned

    Lol. Send casting can be used for other things too...
    Metal casting on the beach:
    NotSoSneaky likes this.
  19. ghrit

    ghrit Ambulatory anachronism Administrator Founding Member

    A spool of cotton hardware store string will work if you have nothing else. I think pre-coating might be helpful.
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  20. vonslob

    vonslob Monkey++

    I buy wicks and beeswax at a craft store and use it to make hand warmers in altoid tins. My family puts out paper bags with sand and a votive candles every christmass eve. I take the left over wax remelt it, then mix it with saw dust to use as a firestarter.
    Yard Dart and ghrit like this.
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