Paraffin Waxes FAQ
Wax is a type of organic substance that is solid at room temperature and melts at a relatively low temperature. It is composed of long-chain hydrocarbons, which are molecules made up of carbon and hydrogen atoms.
Wax can be derived from a variety of sources, including plants, animals, and minerals. Some common types of wax include beeswax, paraffin wax, carnauba wax, and soy wax.
Wax has a wide range of uses in various industries due to its unique properties such as water resistance, low reactivity, and high melting point. It is commonly used in the production of candles, polishes, cosmetics, lubricants, and waterproofing products. In the corrugated industry, wax is used to coat corrugated cardboard sheets to protect them from moisture and humidity during shipping and storage.
Wax can also be blended with other materials, such as polymers, to modify their properties and improve their performance. For example, blending wax with polymers can improve their impact strength, flexibility, and processability.
Paraffin wax is a type of wax derived from petroleum, which is a fossil fuel. It is a white, odorless, and tasteless solid that is typically sold in the form of small pellets or blocks.
Paraffin wax is used in a wide range of industries, including the production of candles, cosmetics, and polishes. In the corrugated industry, paraffin wax is commonly used to coat corrugated cardboard sheets to make them water-resistant and protect them from moisture and humidity during shipping and storage.
Paraffin wax has a low melting point and is relatively soft, making it easy to melt and shape. It can also be blended with other materials, such as microcrystalline wax or polymers, to modify its properties and improve its performance. For example, blending paraffin wax with microcrystalline wax can improve its strength, adhesion, and flexibility.
Fully refined paraffin wax is a high-quality type of paraffin wax that has undergone a refining process to remove impurities and improve its properties. The refining process typically involves several steps, including solvent deoiling, clay treatment, and filtration.
During the refining process, the crude paraffin wax is first treated with solvents, such as propane or hexane, to remove any oil and other impurities. The wax is then mixed with a clay material, such as activated bleaching earth, to remove any remaining impurities, such as colorants and odorants. Finally, the wax is filtered to remove any remaining impurities and achieve the desired melting point and hardness.
Fully refined paraffin wax is a high-quality wax that has a low oil content of 0.5% or less, high melting point, and good clarity. It is commonly used in the production of candles, cosmetics, and pharmaceuticals due to its purity, stability, and consistency. It is also commonly used in the corrugated industry for coating corrugated cardboard sheets to make them water-resistant and protect them from moisture and humidity during shipping and storage.
Semi-refined paraffin wax is a type of paraffin wax that has undergone a partial refining process, but has not been fully refined to remove all impurities with an oil content of .5 to 1.5%.
Semi-refined paraffin wax is often used in applications where a higher level of impurities is acceptable, such as in the production of matches, fire starters, and waterproofing agents. It is also used in some applications where a lower melting point is desirable, such as in the production of crayons, where a softer wax is needed.
However, semi-refined paraffin wax is generally considered lower quality compared to fully refined paraffin wax, as it may have a less consistent quality and may contain more impurities that can affect its performance in some applications.
Slack wax is a byproduct of the refining process of crude oil, which is also known as petroleum wax. It is a semi-solid mixture of hydrocarbons that is produced during the process of dewaxing petroleum-based products such as lubricating oils, paraffin wax, and candles. The range of oil content in slack wax is usually between 1.5 to 10%.
The term "slack" refers to the residual or unrefined wax that remains after the dewaxing process. This wax has a relatively low melting point and is often used in the production of various products such as wax emulsions, wax blends, and polishes.
Slack wax can be further processed to produce fully refined paraffin wax or microcrystalline wax, which are used in a wide range of industrial and consumer applications, including candles, packaging materials, cosmetics, and coatings.
It is produced by further refining slack wax or de-oiled wax through solvent-based processes. The resulting wax has a fine crystal structure, which gives it unique properties, such as a higher melting point, greater flexibility, and improved adhesive strength.
Microcrystalline wax is often used in various industrial applications, such as adhesives, coatings, and polishes, due to its high viscosity and tackiness. It is also used in the production of candles, cosmetics, and packaging materials. The wax can be blended with other waxes to improve their performance or modify their properties.
Microcrystalline wax is considered to be a high-quality wax due to its unique properties. Its properties make it an ideal choice for applications where high performance and durability are required.
Blended waxes are waxes that have been combined or mixed with other waxes or additives to modify their properties and improve their performance. The purpose of blending waxes is to create a final product that has specific characteristics that are ideal for a particular application.
Blended waxes can be made by combining different types of waxes, such as paraffin wax, microcrystalline wax, to achieve a desired melting point, consistency, and texture. The addition of other additives, such as stearic acid or polyethylene, polymers can also enhance certain properties of the wax, such as hardness, gloss, and water resistance.
Some common types of blended waxes include:
Container wax: a blend of paraffin wax and other additives that is designed to adhere well to container walls and resist shrinkage and cracking.
Pillar wax: a blend of harder waxes, such as microcrystalline wax and stearic acid, that is used to create pillar candles with a smooth surface and minimal shrinkage.
Cosmetics wax: a blend of waxes, oils, and other ingredients that is used in the production of various cosmetics, such as lip balms, lotions, and creams.
Blended waxes can offer a range of benefits over single-component waxes, such as improved burning properties, enhanced scent throw, and better mold release.
Curtain coating wax is a type of wax used in the corrugated industry to improve the performance of corrugated board. It is applied to the surface of the corrugated board using a curtain coater, which is a specialized piece of equipment that evenly distributes the wax across the surface of the board.
The purpose of curtain coating wax is to improve the water resistance and printability of the corrugated board. The wax forms a thin, uniform layer on the surface of the board that helps to prevent moisture from penetrating the board, which can cause warping, weakening, and failure. The wax also provides a smooth surface that is ideal for printing and graphics, and can enhance the vibrancy and clarity of the printed images. The wax is typically applied at a controlled temperature and pressure to ensure uniform coverage and adhesion to the board.
Overall, curtain coating wax plays an important role in improving the durability and printability of corrugated board, which is widely used in packaging and shipping applications.
Cascading wax is a process used in the corrugated box industry to improve the water resistance and durability of corrugated board. The process involves pouring molten wax onto the corrugated board as it moves along a conveyor belt, allowing the wax to cascade down and coat the board evenly.
The purpose of cascading wax is similar to curtain coating wax - to create a barrier against moisture and improve the performance of the corrugated board. However, the cascading wax process is typically used for heavier weight board or board that will be exposed to more extreme conditions, such as high humidity or water immersion. The wax is typically heated to a specific temperature and viscosity to ensure proper flow and coverage on the board. The amount of wax applied to the board can also be adjusted to achieve the desired level of water resistance and other performance characteristics.
After the cascading wax process, the corrugated board may undergo further processing, such as printing, laminating, or die-cutting, to create a finished product, such as a shipping box or container. The wax coating helps to ensure that the finished product will withstand various environmental conditions and protect its contents during shipping and handling.
Overall, cascading wax is an important process in the corrugated box industry for improving the performance and durability of corrugated board, particularly for applications that require high water resistance.
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