Old Fashion Torch

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Introduction: Old Fashion Torch

 I learned this trick from some friends and perfected it myself. Please not that they are relatively unstable and should not be used for anything other than emergency or novelty purposes. I.E. I do not suggest using these to be part of some sort of dungeon themed room since they would probably light your house on fire. 

**Be careful, I do not want some law suit because you are the kind of kid that burns yourself with matches and then you try to make a torch for the fun of it. Whatever you do is your responsibility and in no way is it my problem what happens if you use or misuse this technique**

Step 1: Materials

You will need:
Beeswax 
100% Cotton Rope
A stick 
something to melt the wax in
something to light the torch with 
a knife

Note you MUST use 100% cotton rope otherwise you will have dripping molten plastic instead of a nice clean-burning torch. Paraffin or any other comparable wax will do. Also you should use a cheep butter knife so you don't kill your heat temper.

Step 2: Preparing the Torches

There are two main ways to tie the rope to the torch shaft. probably the safest way is to cut and tie individual pieces. this way if it burns through at one place you won't have catastrophic failure . The other option is to tie it the same way you would whip the end of a string. Since that method is more complicated i went over it here.

Step 3: Meting the Wax

Cut the wax and drop it in your cans. This is easier if you heat the knife and then cut it. Double boil the wax so you don't destroy your Mom's pots! You don't actually need two tin cans i just did that so i could show my brother. 
Melting the wax is relatively safe since it is relatively inert. Once it is fully melted roll the end around in the can until it won't absorb any more. Then place it somewhere to try

Step 4: Finished

Lighting these is a little difficult i have a cooking torch that i usually use. once it is lit they will drip burning wax for the first minute or two BE CAREFUL. 
The best way to put these out is to dunk them in water. Ignore the audio on this one i was talking with my dad at the time. Leave comments if you have any questions so you can not burn your eyebrows off.

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    42 Discussions

    0
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    GregS271

    Question 4 months ago

    Most important question how long is burn time?

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    DeadS2

    2 years ago

    Great job!... just wondering if there is anything you could use instead of bee's wax?

    2 replies

    You can use all kinds of stuff, lard or other animal fats were used traditionally aswell as pitch. Paraffin and other types of lamp oil work pretty well and i've heard you can use petrol or even spirits and vodka but i havent tried those myself. Also cotton jersey, old rags or cotton socks tied to a stick work just aswell as rope, you can use stuff you have lying around just make sure its not plastic based or you'll regret it :)

    could you actually go and collect pitch from a damaged tree and melt it like wax to complete the process?

    would it work if instead of cotton rope, you used a cotton sock?

    Just a thought, if your worried about the cord burning through just staple it in several places around the stick. Be safe

    Hemp, sisal, silk, fiberglass, Kevlar, or similar rope would work just as well as cotton. Just no plastic rope. If you can fuse the cut end of a rope, it can't be used for this.

    I love that is flagged "popular"! Is there a large demand for flaming torches these days? I guess i am hanging out with the wrong people, becasue I've always wanted to walk around a cave/dungeon/Mayan temple w a torch just like Indiana Jones.
    Very cool.

    3 replies

    "I learned this trick from some friends and perfected it myself. Please not that they are relatively unstable and should not be used for anything other than emergency or novelty purposes. I.E. I do not suggest using these to be part of some sort of dungeon themed room since they would probably light your house on fire."


    the friends are unstable and may light your house on fire...:)

    I wrapped what i though was cotton string around a stick after i poured wax on it. Should it be burning bright? mine is pathetic.

    1 reply

    pouring wax on it will not be as effective as soaking it in melted wax, the wax will cool before it gets absorbed

    Ideally you should soak the cord in the warm melted wax so that it has maximum absorption. Then wrap multiple layers over the top of each other, bound very tightly. Using a slightly smaller cord you can get 3 or 4 layers and it will burn fairly bright for a torch.

    randomhand: bbq party idea is first thing I thought of too.
    Anyone know a reason why not add citronella oil to the wax?

    1 reply

    I would think that you would just have to make sure that it mixes evenly with the wax. I have never heard of citronella reacting with wax in a bad way and they sell those candles all the time.

    Just a hint, in the begging of Step 3 you spelt melting wrong. Just saying. Other than that your instructable is great! I have always wanted to have one of these! Thanks for posting instructions, it looks like it will work better than using lighter fluid.