Intro: Cast a Pen Holder From Wax
Wax is so flexible you can make any model using it. The pen holder you see here is made with simple paraffin wax used in candle making. Please read on to see how you can make this beautiful looking pen holder very easily.
Step 1: Equipment Required
- A suitable candle mold. I have used a 2-1/2" dia, 4" high aluminium candle mold. You can use any suitable round object, even a card board cylindrical piece as a mold.
- A double boiler. Here a water bath in a larger vessel is used to heat wax placed in a smaller container. You can find these vessels easily in your kitchen.
- Carving knife set for trimming the rim of the mold. A normal kitchen knife can be used for this.
- A Rotary tool with a flex shaft attachment for making the flower design on the side. I have used Dremel 4000 Rotary tool set. You can use a carving knife to make the design or simply leave it as it is
Step 2: Material Required
- Fully refined Paraffin wax. They come in crystal form and contains almost no oil. You need about 100 grams of fully refined paraffin wax.
- Wax Hardener. They are sort of plastic granules used to mix with wax to make it hard. If you do not find it no problem, leave it.
- Candle colors. Candle dyes are oil based and they come as liquid as well as in powder form. The color powder is to be mixed with little amount of coconut oil and then added to the hot wax. Liquid dyes can be added directly to the wax. I have used liquid dye which does not require addition of any oil.
- Few drops of coconut oil or any oil. A small piece of cloth soaked in oil will be used to lubricate the mold.
- Fevicol Synthetic Resin Adhesive. The diluted adhesive will be used for a final coat on the pen holder. This will form a thin layer over the wax cast so that the finished pen holder will not be oily to touch and also prevent dust from sticking to the sides.
Step 3: Prepare the Candle Mold
The candle mold comes in two parts, namely the cylindrical body and the base
- Detach the cylindrical body from the base and apply a thin coat of oil covering the inside
- Also apply oil on the inside of the base plate which will be in contact with wax.
- If you look at the base plate, you will find a small hole at the center for drawing the wick through. Pluck this hole from the bottom using little amount of play dough. This will prevent the melted wax from leaking through the hole.
Step 4: Prepare Wax for Melting
- Take about 100 grams of fully refined wax crystals in the small container
- Add few granules of wax hardener
- Add few drops of liquid candle dye, choose the color you like
- The container with wax is ready to be put in the water bath.
Step 5: Melt Wax
- Take enough water in a larger vessel and place it over medium heat
- Place the small container with wax in the heated water. The small container may tend to float up. Place some weight on top to hold it down.
- Once the wax starts melting, stir the contents using a ladle. Make sure to stir and mix the plastic granules which will take longer to melt.
- Normally we heat wax between 70 to 80 degree centigrade for candle making. But here we slightly over-heat wax to the boiling point of water. This will help us to keep the temperature of wax while casting.
You can see the completely melted wax in the last picture. It is just like water.
Step 6: Make the Cast
You have to do this step very quickly before the wax cools down.
- Pour the melted wax inside the mold immediately after removing from the water bath.
- Now rotate the mold quickly so that the melted wax forms layers on the sides of the mold.
- Keep on rotating the mold on both direction. Allowing molten wax to fall back in the heating container will coat the edges also.
- Re-pour the wax and repeat rotating till you get about 2 mm thick layer on the mold.
- Now pour the remaining wax inside bottom of the mold. This will form base of the pen holder.
- Keep the mold aside to cool.
Step 7: Remove Pen Holder From Mold
- After about 30 minutes, you will find the wax cast completely cooled.
- using a knife trim the excess wax from the rim of the mold.
- Lightly tilt the cylindrical body and it will be released from the base
- Now the completed pen holder will very easily slide down from the mold
- Wash the pen holder with soap water and then with clean water to remove traces of oil we applied on the molds
Step 8: Make a Flower Design on the Side
You can use the pen holder as it is. But to make it more attractive, we will make a flower design on its side.
- Mark the design on the side with a marking pen.
- Carve the design using a rotary tool. I have used a Dremel 4000 rotary tool with the flex shaft attachment. You can also use a carving knife to carve a design of your choice
- Remove any wax flakes on the carved edges with a soft brush.
I have made a single flower design only on its side. you can make many attractive designs of your choice with a rotary tool or a carving knife.
Step 9: Soak the Pen Holder in a Resin Bath
- Mix a tablespoon of Fevicol or any other synthetic adhesive resin in a cup of water. Choose a resin which is water soluble.
- Soak the Pen Holder in the resin bath thoroughly. This will form a thin layer of resin over the wax surface. Remove from resin bath and wipe clean with a cloth.
Your Wax Pen Holder is ready...
Step 10: Place the Pen Holder Where Ever You Like
The wax pen holder can be placed anywhere on your computer desk or on your work table.
Few words of caution here...
Do not expose the wax pen holder to direct sun light and also do not expose to any heat.
Enjoy the simple and attractive looking wax pen holder...