It is problematic when we visit food stores, specially baking stores, with all the fancy equipment and tons of ingredients we go nuts! Last time we visit one, was inevitable to buy a bag of Wilton Candy Melts just to test some prints with it!
And that is what today’s experiment is about. Printing with Wilton Candy Melts.
When you buy candy melts they come in handy packages that look like this. Normally the are used for coating, molding or others. But we wanted to test melting temperature and how fast it sets in order to know if we could try some 3d prints.
First we melt some chips, we could not find many resources,… but the internet pointed a decent melting point between 40 and 50ºC. And that was exactly what we needed. Instructions suggest the use of microwave but we went fancy and did a double boiler water bath.
Our first test were to get a sense on how fast it sets. It took almost 5minutes at room temperature (18ºC). That was not cool. But still we proceed for our first print test at really low speed hoping that would help to set the candy.
FAAAAAAAIL. Printing slowly it gives more time to set BUT, the air compressed extruder is not really reliable at low speeds and pressures. Lots of blobs.
Second test was at 35mm/s.
For this one the definition was better, due to the air compressed extruder works better at this ratio (speed/pressure). But the issue was that the candy had no time to set, so we needed a couple of tries (and let the print to rest for some minutes before moving it) otherwise it collapsed.
So it is winter and we needed a better cooling system…so… we used our window!
We got a drop of 5 degrees between the window and the outside. But results were more or less the same. Window prints:
This was a fun one-day-experiment. As always, the biggest challenge is to find a proper way to manage heat transfer and evacuation. Not sure if candy melt is the healthiest thing on earth, but has plenty of colors to play with. So definitely once we fix the cooling issue we will give it another try!