Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Carving Wax 01

Today I made a small batch of carving wax. I used a modified version of the wax recipe in this post. My recipe for carving wax is basically

1 part paraffin
1 part microcrystalline wax
2 parts talc

The talc I used was Baby Powder, purchased at The Dollar Tree, 14oz per container. So I weighed 14oz of paraffin wax, 14oz of microcrystalline wax, and added 2 containers (28oz) of talc to the melt. I also added a couple of ounces of a white scented candle.

This is a group shot of the carving wax ingredients.

This is the Baby Powder talc. The ingredients of the talc are: Talc, Fragrance.

This is the brown microcrystalline wax and the paraffin wax, with a couple of ounces of a white, scented candle.

I used a candy thermometer to keep track of how hot the melt got. When the wax was all melted, the thermometer read 160 degrees Fahrenheit (71C). At that point I added the two containers of talc and stirred the mixture thoroughly. It is much lighter in colour than the brown wax.

I had soaked the rough plaster test mold in water, while the wax was melting. When the carving wax mixture was ready, I took the plaster mold out of the water and dabbed the excess moisture from the inside, then banded it together with thick rubber bands. I poured the mold using a tin can scoop, which I dipped into the wax pot to fill. Once the mold was filled, I emptied the rest of the wax from the wax pot into another plaster mold which had been thoroughly wet with water, then dabbed dry. In this picture, you can see the wax in the mold. I used a spatula to get all of the carving wax out of the wax pot. The last thing I did was to score the wax with a knife, so it will be easier to break apart the next time I need to melt it.

When the wax I had poured into the test mold was thick enough, I emptied the excess into the wax pot (this was before I emptied the wax pot). Then I put the mold back into the sink of water, to cool. After I had cleaned the wax pot, I took the test mold out of the sink and opened it. This is the same mold that I had scribed two marks on the inside, one inch apart. Once again, I highlighted the raised marks with a Sharpie permanent marker. As you can see from the following photo, there is no discernible shrinkage for the carving wax!

The next time I get to work on my doll, I will cut this wax apart and string it with some elastic, as well do some other tests on it. More later.

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  1. Thank you for this, I will try this, I am looking for a recipe, but most of that I found, the materials are not available, your recipe is the most accessible for me, is this recipe makes for a hard carving wax? I am using a white Micro wax, will it be ok?

  2. This recipe makes a hard carving wax that can be sanded, drilled, carved, and so forth. I do not know if white microcrystalline wax is the same as brown microcrystalline wax. I purchased my brown wax many years ago from Petrolite Specialty Products Group, Bareco Products in Oklahoma, USA. It is called Victory Brown. Perhaps that information will allow you to find the comparison information you are looking for?

  3. I guess they are just the same..is the victory brown wax hard when you touch them? because white ones are malleable when you touch them thank you again for this info.


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