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Milling Wax Foundation

Homemade wax melting tank with water jacket. A metal barrel sitting inside an electric hot water tank with the top removed. (Heated using a regular hot water tank 1500 watt heating element and W.T. Kelly dial control box). Tank is wrapped with insulation and covered with plastic bags (30Gal). I believe the inside barrel (12″ diameter) came from a military resale store.

A pine board, 1×10 by 16 inches, is sanded with fine grit paper to removed any protruding wood fibers. The board is soaked in water (30 min.?) before you begin dipping. Half the board is dipped, then it is turned over and the other half dipped.

The wax is cut off the edges of the board right away. The ends are cut first.

Continuing cutting the plain wax sheets off of the wax dipping board by cutting around the edges.

The wax sheets can be removed by gently peeling them off of the dipping board. Stack wax sheets with a sheet of cut newspaper between to await embossing.

Neatly position a plain wax sheet onto a precut plastic sleeve (made from a plastic garbage bag that is a bit wider than the wax sheet (16″) and twice as long as the length of the wax sheet (20″)). Soapy water is applied to all surfaces as a release agent.

The plastic sleeved plain wax sheet (sleeve guards against stretching the warm wax sheet during embossing) is fed through the foundation embossing rollers.

Here is a stack of 4.9mm foundation made by running plain wax sheets through the embossing rollers.

Peel the protective plastic sleeve away from the embossed foundation sheet that has been run through the hand mill (embossing rollers).

Remove the plastic protective sleeve from the embossed foundation that helps prevent stretching and fudging of sizing.

Trim the wax foundation to size. Lay a piece of masonite (in this case, 10″ x 16-1/2″ for deep frame) on the embossed wax.

Using a pizza cutter, trim off the ends.

Finished sheet of 4.9mm wax foundation using clean wax from untreated hives.

Here are three good stacks of foundation I made while at the Lusby’s.