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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    marlette Mi
    Posts
    35

    Post

    Saturday I melted down some wax and filtered it through some cheese cloth. The wax I melted was white to yellowish in color. But it turns a brown kind of mud puddle color. I use a double boiler. That is I melt the wax in a melting pot in a pot of water. What is going on? My mentor gets a nice gold colored wax. All I want to do is seal my bottled mead with it but not with such a crappy colored wax.
    Any suggestions? Can I do anything with what I have already melted to lighten the color? I really hate the idea of buying beeswax when I am already producing it. Plus this wax is worthless in my opinion, for resale at least. So it seems to me that I have a valuless hive product. The wax is supposed to be the icing on the cake after the honey crop. Well unless I started collecting propolis. I hear that propolis is going for $6/lb.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Erin, NY /Florence SC
    Posts
    3,361

    Post

    Overheating the wax is the most common way to darken the wax. You don't say whether you are using cappings wax or discarded comb. Comb often has many more impurities (larval leftovers, travel stains etc) than cappings. We process several hundred pounds of wax a year ourside on a coleman gas stove we use just for this. We put several pounds of cappings wax in about a gallon and 1/2 of water, cover and boil until everything is melted. We then let the wax cool to a cake and most of the impurities will sink to the bottom. We scrape the bottom of the cake and then the wax is carefully heated to melting point in a double boiler, filtered through old t-shirts and it comes out lemon yellow.

    As to propolis if you find a retail market, especially in an ethnic Russian or Polish community it is a great seller. We sell 2 ounces of Propolis for 4.00 and 1 oz. of propolis tincture for 5.95. We never have any extra on hand. I believe even wholesale with someone like Beehive botanicals you could get the wholesale price you speak of. We use propolis traps and harvest chunks from finished honey supers. We take nothing from hive bodies due avoid any contamination from yearly IPM routines.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    marlette Mi
    Posts
    35

    Post

    I was wondering aboout overheating. I did the same on an outdoor colman stove. The wax I used was mostle burr comb. None of what I used was from the brood chamber. So no part of a bee's life cycle had occured in this comb.
    So you melt the wax down mixed with water? Or did I read your post incorrectly?
    My latest wax cake had a small amount of impurities in the finished block. It had some but not enough to completely cover the bottom of the block.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Evansville, IN, USA
    Posts
    2,837

    Post

    MeadMan . . .

    I have a pc of burr comb on my desk that looks like chocolate, dont know why.

    I alway melt the wax in water. First time, the wax is floating in water. that removes the honey. Second time it melted, I float a container (stainless pet food dish) of wax in the water. That way the "pure" wax is never overheated or in direct contact w/ heat source.

    The brightest/lightest colored wax cakes come from "cappings".

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Erin, NY /Florence SC
    Posts
    3,361

    Post

    On the 1st processing we melt the wax in water. Most of the dirt will sink to the bottom and wax to the top. This allow eliminating most of the "dirt" from the wax before the final melting for filtering. This is done with the wax in a container in a double boiler. End result is lemon yellow wax.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    marlette Mi
    Posts
    35

    Post

    Is it to late for the wax I have already melted down?

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Heavener Oklahoma
    Posts
    937

    Post

    Get you or make your self a solar wax melter and let the sun do the work, even out of old dark brood combs it will be a nice yellow

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