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Gutterbunnie

Capping/bottling mishap

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My first experience breaking off the tops of glass bottles using the wing capper from Mr Beer! I've bottled at least 19 batches with it & not too many problems. An occasional stuck bottle inside capper. But, the other night when bottling Dead & Berried Saison, I literally broke off the tops of 2 glass bottles.  Not shattered - the bottles were still standing full of beer. They were recycled bottles, although I've not had much trouble in the past with recycled bottles either. Well my hubby saved my butt that night, because he was able to pry out the broken cap that had the glass lip of the bottle jammed into the capper & I finished bottling, minus some beer. I thought I was going to have to put everything away & go to LHBS, buy new capper & start all over. But the saddest part, I lost 2 full bottles of beer☹️ Has this happened to anyone and is it just the bottles, my technique (maybe I don't know my own strenght?), or is it time to buy a new capper tool? I just prefer glass over plastic, but I also don't want to be losing 24 oz of beer at every bottling when I'm only making 2 gallon batches.

 

Just glad to be making beer again - my weekends for the last few months have been otherwise occupied with family stuff. I'd rather be brewing beer, honestly. Just made 2nd batch of Golden Empire IPA last night. Looking forward to trying my first Pumpkin Ale & Chocolate Milk Stout. I'm hoping the Dead & Berried Saison conditions well, but I liked the sample before I added the fruit & lactic acid. I used Safale BE-134 & I like the light spicy flavors it produced, more subtle funk than Belle Saison. Happy Brewing everyone:)

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I broke one with my hand capper and thought I'd have a heart attack as it literally crushed the top and left some very nasty jagged edges.

 

I haven't used the hand capper since and bought a Colt bench capper and mounted it to a board. I feel better about using the lever action capper.

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ah good ideas. Yeah I just bottle at my kitchen table as it gives me just the right leverage, but it's just wood, nothing under the bottles. My brother gave/loaned me his ancient bench capper (on a plank of wood) but it's been in an old wooden storage shed that had mice running all over the place Image result for images of miceImage result for images of mice

 

 

& so I've been hesitant to use it. And I haven't taken the time to scrub it down & sanitize it - how would one sanitize a bench capper attached to a piece of wood? Anyhoo, I'll just use the LHBS bought- bottles for the most part & stop recycling commercial bottles over & over. That may do the trick I hope.

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I think that some glass bottles may develop micro cracks, fractures and even a deep scratch that can lead to failure. Working with laboratory glassware, we trash any scored glassware, as they WILL fail at some point. Lately, I've gone back to plastic.

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Make sure you're not using screw top bottles.  The necks on those bottles are weaker and break easy.

 

I have never brought a new bottle.  I have approximately 600 564 12 oz glass bottles, every one a recycled bottle.  

 


There is nothing that needs to be sanitized on a capper except the cap which you place on the bottle.  Then wipe out the bell so that it doesn't rust from the sanitizer.  

 

Super Agata Bench Capper

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4 hours ago, Cato said:

I broke one with my hand capper and thought I'd have a heart attack as it literally crushed the top and left some very nasty jagged edges.

 

I haven't used the hand capper since and bought a Colt bench capper and mounted it to a board. I feel better about using the lever action capper.

Not to jinx you but I have  broken a bottle with my hand lever operated capper before now (just one though)

That was because I had the cap on crooked.

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38 minutes ago, Nickfixit said:

Not to jinx you but I have  broken a bottle with my hand lever operated capper before now (just one though)

That was because I had the cap on crooked.

Yes, for sure that can happen, I just feel better about having my hands further away from the glass.

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6 hours ago, Gutterbunnie said:

ah good ideas. Yeah I just bottle at my kitchen table as it gives me just the right leverage, but it's just wood, nothing under the bottles. My brother gave/loaned me his ancient bench capper (on a plank of wood) but it's been in an old wooden storage shed that had mice running all over the place Image result for images of miceImage result for images of mice

 

 

& so I've been hesitant to use it. And I haven't taken the time to scrub it down & sanitize it - how would one sanitize a bench capper attached to a piece of wood? Anyhoo, I'll just use the LHBS bought- bottles for the most part & stop recycling commercial bottles over & over. That may do the trick I hope.

Most bells unscrew from the capper.

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On 9/22/2018 at 2:35 PM, Jdub said:

bottling day. i had noticed the last few bottling days that my hand capper was starting to crap out on me. was starting to crunch against the glass. I broke 2 bottles this morning of precious hefe. threw the capper away and ran up to my LHBS and bought a super agata bench capper. what a great device. finished out my batch, but only got 20 bottles b/c of the hand capper. live and learn.

 

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Yeah, I've been contemplating investing in a good bench capper.  Not sure about cleaning that old one, but I might give it a try this weekend. My LHBS has a super sale on Black Friday for members, 20% off everything in the store. Well, I have 2 more batches ready to be bottled, & will likely have to use hand capper for those. will hope for the best:)

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