So, you now have a fire toy and you’re wondering how many times you can burn it. That number depends on a lot of things, but you can prolong the lifespan of your fire toy with proper care. First of all what toy you have and its construction will have a great affect on your toy, as well as how you use it and how you care for it. Very pointy construction will have the point burn and degrade much faster. Monkey fists will last much longer than Cathedral heads because the flame envelope covers the entire wick so a flame front won’t appear on the wick. As for things you can do:
1) Don’t practice with your fire toy, or at least don’t hit them a lot. This should be self explanatory.
2) Keep your wicks Covered when not burning. This will prevent your wicks from getting scuffed, decomposing from harmful UV rays, keep the rest of your house clean, and be able to identify your fire prop from everyone else’s. Go find some colorful baby socks.
3) Keep your wick in a clean and dry. If you do get water on your wicks, you can burn them soon to try and get as much moisture out as possible. Be very, very careful never to get salt water on your wicks. If you can, keep your wicks in an air tight container. Zip-Lock bags are wonderful for this.
4) Extinguish your wicks sooner. Keep an eye on your wicks during the burn. If the flame envelope no longer covers all of your wick, then portions of your wick is burning and not just the fuel.
5) Use low temperature fuel. Fuels like lamp oil and paraffin burn at a lower temperature than white gas or other naphtha distillates which will degrade your wicks faster if you let them burn down.
6) Do not use ‘colored’ flames. Colored flames use salts, which when heated, produce different colors. Many of these salts will decompose wicks much faster than normal.
7) Maintain your wicks. If you start to see fraying or the wick is coming apart, either use PBA or white glue to stop the fray. If the wick is falling apart from broken threads, repair the wick as soon as possible.
8) Proper construction. If making your own fire props, be sure to tighten your wicks so that the flame can’t get inside and smolder. Also try to make sure you sew the wick with as little thread exposed as possible. Don’t forget to seal any open ends with PBA or White Glue.
9) Don’t do damaging tricks. Yeah, Circle of Death is really cool but any trick where your wick touches concrete mean a severe reduction in wick lifespan.
10) Stop the smoldering. If you are using a low temperature fuel and are putting your wicks out early, but you still see some smoldering on your wicks. You can put the wick back into the low temperature (High Flash point) fuel to stop the smoldering. NEVER put a hot wick into a fuel container. If you hear a sizzle, that means you are boiling the fuel and the vapor will escape and could potentially catch fire.
11) Soak your brand new wicks. Soak new wicks all the way through. That way you have fuel to help prevent internal heat damage. The fuel will vaporize at a certain temperature before the wick starts to decompose. Otherwise you’re just heating up dry pockets of wick.
12) Use a Kevlar and Fiberglass blend wick. Fiberglass will not decompose until around 1000 degrees Fahrenheit (540 degrees Celsius) while Kevlar only can handle up to 600 degrees Fahrenheit (350 degrees Celsius).
13) Retire your wicks. When in doubt, please, please, retire your wicks early. Yes, you probably could get a couple more burns out of them, but is it worth the risk of a flaming part of the wick flying off and starting a fire? Please keep in mind that severely damaged wicks are potential fire hazards.
Content originally posted on: www.theflowjunction.com/wick-care-longer-life/