Melting Wax in the Solar Oven

Finally, a couple of fully sunny days. In the morning I feed the chickens, move the chicks into their mini coop, then set up the solar oven and the wax. Here’s how I do it (with thanks to LDSPrepper).

Bucket of wax, rinsed several times to get most of the honey off. This is a mix of brood, honey and burr comb:

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Pan with an inch of water:

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Cover it with cotton (tied with a rubber band):
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Put paper towel on top, this is the filter:

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Add the wax:

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Set in homemade solar oven:

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Wait all day, turning the oven to the path of the sun once in a while. It goes up to 200F in there. Till you get this:

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And underneath it, beautiful yellow wax:

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Now that I know that it works, I need to scale this up. We got a lot of wax from the beekeeper but it all needs more filtering if we’re going to make candles out of it. I’m on the hunt for the largest pan that will fit that old kitchen cabinet/solar oven.

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4 Comments

  1. I’m curious – is there any follow-on use for the guck left on top of that paper towel? Does it compost? Is there anything that would eat it? I’m just fascinated by the entire process. Thanks for all the fab photos, by the way – they truly are worth a thousand words.

  2. Thanks, Michelle!
    As far as I know the gunk leftover is mainly the pupa skins the bees leave in the brood comb when they eclose, or come out. Honeycomb is usually kept very clean, but brood comb, after a few years, become brown, then black with these leftovers.
    There would also be pollen and propolis.
    I may compost it, as it’s not a lot, but if it were a lot I’d be concerned about leftover wax, which is inert and might smother the compost pile.

  3. Thank you, Kath! I went to the local Savers and bought a $1 oven pan that fits the narrow oven alongside the smaller pan, so I’m making good use of the limited space now. Or I would be, if it were sunny… But rain is good too, refilling my water tanks, so I’m not complaining.

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