Okay! We left off with a pot full of sludge and me full of skepticism. I somehow imagined that the wax would solidify in a tidy ball suspended in the water. I was wrong, but it DID come together:
I also put some water in the cans to help encourage the wax to melt. I'm not sure that was strictly necessary, but it worked!
So now what? The bottom of each can will have an inch of water or so. Then there will be some miscellaneous crap adhering to the bottom of the wax, and then a column of wax. It could probably stand yet another round of filtering before it gets used, but we'll see. I feel like it's definitely come a long way in a couple of days.
I've also done a lot of cooking in the two evenings in the kitchen: mesquite chocolate chip cookies, curried pumpkin coconut soup, muhammara, and a ravioli-broccoli-tomato-cheese bake (because I needed the can the tomatoes were occupying!). I'm a little sick of kitchen projects for the moment, but look for more wax updates in a week or so.