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mkochsch
11-02-2005, 07:21 AM
I decided to try to refine some cappings using the melt in water method. A dismal failure, and to add injury to insult I've make a mess of my pots and some cooking utensils. How do I get rid of wax from pots. What's the best workflow? Is there a chemical that dissolves the wax or leaves it in suspension so I can wash it down the drain? Thx.

ChellesBees
11-02-2005, 07:34 AM
heat it up again, coat it with vegetable oil, and wipe with paper towels. Then use hot soap water. I wouldn't run anything waxy down the drain.
What happened that you would call it a failure? Maybe you can still salvage it.

mkochsch
11-02-2005, 08:15 AM
Does the vegetable oil dilute the wax?

I was trying to separate out a small pail of cappings from this year. So a eight quart pot was all I needed. I ran it through the heating process twice, each time tossing the yucky water in the bush. I probably got about half a pound of what was a mixture of wax and crud. It just seems that on my small scale I can't get enough pure wax on top to make it worth my while. Maybe if I used a tall thin pot more would be on top for skimming. I could still try again I suppose. Is there a chemical way to filter it? I'm not feeding it back to bees or humans or making foundation. I'd just like a chunk of wax.

daniel G.
11-02-2005, 10:13 AM
Use a fine window screen and a nylon stocking or nylon furnace filter to filter the wax. I use two pots for a double boiler setup. One pot is used for wax, the other pot holds the water and the pot of wax. When I get it melted and ready to pour, I use samll bread loaf pans or the larger ones (depending on the amount of wax) to pour the melted wax into.

I put the furnace filter ontop of the window screen and than pour the wax through the window screen and furnace nylon filter to filter out all impurities. You can make a frames to hold the screen and furnace filter. This method seems to work for me. When I am done with the pot of wax I use the hot water from the double boiler pot and pour it into the wax pot to soften the wax, than wipe it out with paper towel. Keep doing this until the wax is gone.

Mitch
11-02-2005, 10:26 AM
Try this for a small amount of wax.I have had good luck.Take a canning funnel or one that sets nicely on a mason jar put 2 coffee filters in the funnel.Put the wax in and put the whole thing in the oven at about 200 deg F.It works great for small amounts of wax nice and clean.The used coffee filters make a great fire starter for the wood burner.

Ps i like to use and old glass jar that i can pitch

[ November 02, 2005, 12:30 PM: Message edited by: Mitch ]

LittleBeeHive
11-02-2005, 10:31 AM
I only have one hive and I got 3 small cottage cheese containers of wax from the cappings and from the cleaning of the super frames before storage (just scrapped off the excess, not the drawnout comb). I melted everything in a double boiler. As it was melting, the junk (bee parts, propolis, dirt etc.) kinda sunk to the bottom. I used a skewer to pull out the clumps, getting out as much as I could. then when it was pretty clean, I took cheese cloth (double layer) and stretched it over a cottage cheese containter, holding it in place with a rubber band. I then slowly poured the hot wax mixture over the cheese cloth, slowly. Then let it cool. I did this 3 different times and each time it worked great. The wax that was filtered was beautiful and clean.

Well good luck to you. You can always remelt the wax and filter it again. Should be good as new.

LittleBeeHive
11-02-2005, 10:33 AM
I only have one hive and I got 3 small cottage cheese containers of wax from the cappings and from the cleaning of the super frames before storage (just scrapped off the excess, not the drawnout comb). I melted everything in a double boiler. As it was melting, the junk (bee parts, propolis, dirt etc.) kinda sunk to the bottom. I used a skewer to pull out the clumps, getting out as much as I could. then when it was pretty clean, I took cheese cloth (double layer) and stretched it over a cottage cheese containter, holding it in place with a rubber band. I then slowly poured the hot wax mixture over the cheese cloth, slowly. Then let it cool. I did this 3 different times and each time it worked great. The wax that was filtered was beautiful and clean.

As far as cleaning goes, hot water, soap, papertowels and a green scrubby for the last bits that don't come off.

Well good luck to you. You can always remelt the wax and filter it again. Should be good as new.

PA Pete
11-02-2005, 10:35 AM
Would starting out by putting the wax inside a stocking, then tying it off also work? Can you boil a stocking? Seems like this might be easier, as any wax floating on the water will already have been filtered. Costs you a stocking though.

-Pete

ChellesBees
11-03-2005, 07:20 AM
The vegetable oil will combine with the wax, making it soft and easier to clean up. If you combine it with the wax you are trying to clean, it will ruin it. I just use it to clean pots and pans afterwards. See how LittleBeeHive rendered wax, that is how I do it too. Cottage cheese cartons or any disposable plastic that has a slight taper to it. I put the wax I am trying to clean into a double boiler, and then when it is all melted, I add some hot water (how much depends on the size container you are pouring it into)stir it well and pour through cheesecloth to strain it. As it cools, the wax floats on top, the water goes to the bottom, and most of the gunk goes to the bottom with the wax. Sometimes I have to melt and strain two or three times to get something really clean. For a small amount of wax, if you use a container that is too big, with too much water, it spreads out all over the top and you end up with too much water in the wax. It can still be salvaged though.