Altoids Tin Candle





Introduction: Altoids Tin Candle

About: I always looking for new things to build, I like to build stuff that is different than normal or something that is useful that I can actually use often. I love to go fishing and camping and my hobbies and ...

A simple instructable to teach u how to make an easy candle for camping or surviving in the wild.

Step 1: Items Needed

All u need is a glass jar or anything else to melt your wax,four to six tea light candles,an empty Altoids tin,and either super glue or a hot glue gun.

Step 2: Removing Metal and Wicks From Candles

Remove the metal from the tea lights and also CAREFULLY remove the metal base and wick and save them for later.

Step 3: Preparing Altoids Tin

Glue down the wicks for the tea lights into the bottom of the Altoids tin.  You can either put one in the middle or one on the left and right(i prefer to put two wicks) but in the picture i tried it with only one.

Step 4: Melting the Wax

to melt the tea lights place them all in a safe,thick canning jar and place the jar in a pot.  Fill the pot up with enough water to cover enough of the sides of the jar but not to much that it will go into the jar.  Heat the water on your stove gradually until all of the tea lights melt.  Once the wax is in liquid form pour it into the Altoids tin and either let it sit out disturbed to harden or place in the freezer to let it harden quicker.  And that is all u need to do to make a cool camping or emergency candle.

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54 Discussions

You could also use a Citronella candle for wax. I only camp once or twice a year and we wind up buying citronella pots every year and tossing them after using only a fraction because they get gross with all the dead bugs and debris. Plus you'd have plenty of Citronella wax left over to make them again and store for next year without the smell of Citronella in your house.

Gonna use the wife's old Yankee Candles. I'll just have to steal a tea light from her for the wick

1 reply

If you melt down the wax from an emergency candle it will last longer, about 5 hours or so.

the glue in the container might not hold if you heat it up wa7jos

I always try to find shortcuts even if they are simple. Could you just get some tin foil and make it into a cup and just heat the wax like that?

1 reply

Has anyone had difficulties with the bottom of the can getting hot when the wick burns down far enough, or is that little metal disk on the bottom of the wick a sufficient insulator?

I was thinking about trying these with the Boy Scouts since I have a bunch of candles that could be recycled.

Thank you,


2 replies

This is a great idea, I'm glad you thought of this I just got done using a bunch of bug repellant candles that wickers burnt out, now I can use the wax. Great idea!

1 reply

This is cool, and practical - it has a holder and is self-contained. You even could glue some paper matches and strike paper on the inside lid. I'd love to see a picture of the finished product burning :)

I wonder if the pan ideas people are suggesting would work. Hopefully it wouldn't warp the tin. Might be worth trying if you are just making one or two.

1 reply

We have been making these for years as survival lights, but we call them Zombie Candles.
Remember that the more wicks you use, the brighter the output, and the more heat you end up with on a cold day.
Larger tin, more wicks... big enough and you can heat water over it.
If you use the mini Altoids can with one wick, you get a 'Warning Light' you can put out around corners of stairwells, etc., so you can see the Zombies coming...

3 replies

Well, you don't NEED to use them for Zombies, but since they are for our survival kit [Read: BugOut Bag] and for camping, or whenever the power goes out for more a than a few minutes- and you end up going stir crazy- "Zombie Candles".
I have made them in candy tins, up to 5"x3"x1", with 10 wicks. And with the silver lid at 90 degrees it produces anopugh light to read by for over an hour, and, with the lid folded completely down, enough heat to warm your tea.
Fun stuff, Zombie Candles! 
With the Mini Altoids tin and one wick, if you are camping replace 'Zombie' with 'critter', and if you add juice from a lemon or orange peel, it helps keep away bugs, too.