From the HBD Archive
From: Mike Fertsch <hplabs!uiucdcs!meccad.RAY.COM!FERTSCH>
Subject: JUST SAY NO to twist-off bottles
Date: 1989-01-25 16:34:00 GMT

The strength of the bottle crown and cap are only part of the exploding
bottle problem. The strength of the bottle itself is also critical. I use
only thick walled returnable bar bottles for my brew. During a heat stroke
last summer, I had a few bottles explode. Curiously, the caps and crowns
didn't break; instead, the bottoms of the bottles blew out. I hate to
think how many I would have lost if I had used thin walled bottles.

I would recommend staying clear of throw-away twist-top bottles. The
bottles have much thinner walls than returnable ones, and a brewer is just
asking for problems. I have no experience with twist-off caps, but they
have to be worse than standard crowns. Given a choice, use only returnable
bottles with standard crowns.

A friend of mine uses Grolsch bottles. It seems that the rubber gasket
acts like a relief valve to protect the bottles. During the heat stroke
he noticed that his bottles were hissing around the gaskets, releasing
excess gas. After the weather improved, the bottles sealed again. He
drank his beer, while I mopped mine up! Maybe I'll switch to Grolsch
bottles for this summer's brewing!

mike fertsch

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