Working model, scale 1:2, of candle moulding machine. Made by Price's Patent Candle Company Ltd., Battersea, London.
This is a half-size working model of a candle-moulding machine which was made in 1888 by the famous Price's Patent Candle Company Ltd. of Battersea. Traditionally, candles were made by repeatedly dipping the wick into molten tallow, or pouring tallow over a hanging wick and allowing it to cool. Candle moulds were introduced in the fifteenth century, but were little used because the soft, sticky tallow was difficult to remove from the moulds. The development of harder wax substances after 1850, such as stearine and paraffin, made possible the mass production of uniform candles in special moulding machines.
This model incorporates improvements made earlier in the century. The moulds are water-cooled, first patented by Thomas Binns in 1801, and utilise a piston moulding system first used by Joseph Morgan in 1823. This machine moulds 96 candles at each cast. Larger machines could manage up to 500.