I did a cut out the other day and had a 5 gallon bucket about 2/3 full with comb. And this was crushed down a bit too, not just loosely stacked in there. I figured there was at least 5 lbs in the bucket and even though there was some larvae and cocoons in there to - I figured there had to be about 3 lbs of wax.
I did not have room in the freezer, so I just went ahead and tried to melt it down.
I brought some water to a boil and slowly added the comb. I have a course strainer and scooped off the larvae and cocoons into another bucket and left the water and wax behind.
I know this process is not terribly efficient, but I fugured if I got even half of the wax and half was wasted - I'd still get 1.5 to maybe 2 lbs of wax.
After the water cooled there was almost no wax left in there. Just a ring around the pot - not even a thin layer over the water. Obviously the wax is all tied up with the cocoons etc in the other bucket, but how much is really there?
I know of the method to tie it all in a weighted bag and drop in boiling water, but it just seems like there can't be much there.
What kind of return on investment are others seeing when processing wax. If you had a 5 gallon bucket 2/3 full of comb - how much wax would you expect to get out of it?
Do you usually save up a large quantity of wax before processing?
How many combs does it take to get a pound of nice filtered wax?