Hi,I figure if making colored candle flames was easy, then these candles would be available. They are... but only when the candles burn a liquid fuel. I would think you could make an alcohol lamp that burns with a colored flame by attaching a wick to an alcohol lamp filled with fuel containing metal salts. The salts could be dissolved in a small amount of water, which would be miscible in alcohol. Some salts dissolve directly in alcohol. It's possible something similar could be achieved using a fuel oil. I'm not sure a wax candle would ever work as well. Soaking the wick will produce a colored flame, much as if you burned paper or wood that has been soaked with metal salts, but the wick of a candle burns very slowly. Most of the flame results from combustion of vaporized wax.
I just posted this question to the forum but I am also interested in your take on it. I read the article about colored fire and decided to try to make a candle with a color flame!
First I tried dissolving the chems you suggested in the article (such as Cupric Chloride) into water until it was fully concentrated, and soaking some wicks overnight. After drying the wicks I found that on their own they do burn with a pretty flame (well some of the chems), but once I tried adding wax to the mixture the natural color of the wax burning completley took away any desired effects :(
Next I tried grinding up the chems into a fine powder and mixing as uniformly as possible with the wax. This was also unsuccessful and resulted in sporadic and weak color at best and often wouldn't even stay lit. Even when I could keep the particles from sinking to the bottom of the molten wax, they still not burn correctly. I am convinced that in order to make a functioning candle with a color flame it is necessary to fully dissolve the salts and minerals listed in the article into the wax. Obviously the salts do not naturally disssolve and this got me thinking that maybe an emulsifier is neccessary? Does that make sense? Thanks,
Has anyone tried making candles with colored flames? Do you have any suggestions for the reader who sent this e-mail or any tips about what will/won't work?