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#1

Member
SE NH
(This post was last modified: 07-18-2016, 11:04 PM by PhilNH5.)
In a recent post I showed a reproduction antique sealing wax kit.  Today I tested it out and though other pen aficionados mig find it interesting.

This is the kit. A wax seal, an alcohol lamp, a melting spoon and wax sticks all in a nice case.
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I used a pencil to trace the size of the seal. This is so I know how much molten wax to pour on the letter.
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I used a very sharp knife to cut the wax. It is very hard. Modern sealing wax is much softer and flexible.
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I put the wax in the cup and used the lamp to heat and melt it. My fuel was rubbing alcohol which is 70% alcohol and 30% water. This did not burn as well as I hoped. I will replace it with lamp oil in the future.
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Once molten I poured the wax into the penciled circle on the envelope.
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Then I used the seal to spread the wax and make the impression.
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Final result. It is a paw print. I got soot in the wax which left a black mark. Also as this was my first attempt I did not put enough wax in the spoon.
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I am really pleased with this set up. The wax spoon holds the heat so I had plenty of time to work. I normally us wax sticks and you have to rush to keep melting wax before the first drops on the envelope harden. I really like this set up.

Phil

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#2

Member
Southern Ohio
I have used the wax sticks with the wick in them and it seems to stay soft enough to drip enough on there and make the seal. The wax on the sticks I use are definately harder than candle wax.

Sent from my SCH-I535 using Tapatalk

Freddy likes this post
#3

Super Moderator
San Diego, Cal., USA
Very nice, Phil. I do like the idea of the heating spoon. It looks like it gives one more control in pouring the wax.
#4

Member
St. Louis, MO
That's awesome. I have always been interested in those wax seals for letters. It's just so classy.
Ancient, Free and Accepted Wet Shaver since 2006
#5
I used to wax. I just lit the end of the wax stick let it burn and drip on the envelope then stamp it. About8-10 drops...stamp done
#6

Merchant
Central Maine
Very classy!

Will that seal survive a trip through USPS and to a destination?
Brian. Lover of SE razors. Maker of Krampert's Finest Products.
#7

Member
SE NH
(07-15-2016, 07:53 PM)ShadowsDad Wrote: Very classy!

Will that seal survive a trip through USPS and to a destination?


Brian,
No that wax shown above will not. In keeping with the antique reproduction time era it is a very hard wax. Initially sealing wax served 2 purposes. One, to seal the letter. Two, as a security device. The cracked wax showed your letter was tampered with.  This kind of wax will not survive modern USPS sorting machines.

I normally use modern sealing wax. It is flexible. I have sent hundreds of sealed letters to PA, NJ, NC and GA without one ever having a problem.


This is the process using modern sealing wax. These are flexible wax sticks with a wick.
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I did a few letters at once so I set the seal on a wet paper towel to cool it off between impressions.

The wax is flammable. And yes I have lit envelopes on fire. The flaming wick can add black soot to the impression. To avoid a fire and soot I use a long tipped butane lighter to melt the wax.
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Once there is enough wax on the envelope I press the seal in. Only needs about 10 seconds to set.
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This weeks batch of letters had expressions of thanks for birthday presents so I chose an appropriate seal.
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I have finished the seals. The brass gizmo above the pink envelope is a set of seals. It holds 6 seals that screw on/off for use. I put them on the wooden handle. There are 2 more seals on the top bottom surface of the brass seal holder.
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I have only used the antique repro cup once but prefer it over the sticks. I need to order plain wax sticks with out the wick. I think then I will be able to crank out the seals.

Phil

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#8

Merchant
Central Maine
As I wrote, "Very Classy!" .

That sure beats getting an e-mail !

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Brian. Lover of SE razors. Maker of Krampert's Finest Products.
#9

Brother
U S A
This looks really neat, but does the wax increase the weight of the letter too much?

A person wants to send a letter that weighs less one ounce.
DE Gillette
#10

Member
SE NH
(07-24-2016, 02:31 PM)alphege Wrote: This looks really neat, but does the wax increase the weight of the letter too much?

A person wants to send a letter that weighs less one ounce.

I have done this for 2 or 3 years. I have never had a letter marked "postage due" because it was overweight. I tend to favor heavy weight stationery as they handle fountain pen ink better. I had the same weight concern issues when I started using wax seals but as mentioned it is no problem.

Phil

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