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General Category => Kegging and Bottling => Topic started by: midtex on February 11, 2010, 09:00:38 PM

Title: Re-using commercial pry-off bottles
Post by: midtex on February 11, 2010, 09:00:38 PM
I saved the bottles from six-packs of Paulaner and also Weihenstephaner hefeweizen and am considering re-using them. Both sets are identical and are obviously from the same manufacturer. Since those are bottle-conditioned beers, am I safe to assume they are strong enough for my own hefe and carbonation to 3.5 units of CO2? I have been weighing bottles, and the empty bottles I bought from Midwest are about 9.5 oz. and these German bottles are about 8.7 oz. Compare that to Sam Adams bottles which were quite a bit less - less than 7 oz. if I remember correctly. The thought of flying glass near my face is a little scary.......
Title: Re: Re-using commercial pry-off bottles
Post by: hamiltont on February 11, 2010, 09:17:05 PM
You should be fine at 3.5 units of CO2....  Unless you have a defective bottle.  :o
Title: Re: Re-using commercial pry-off bottles
Post by: BrewArk on February 11, 2010, 10:16:42 PM
I use the Sam Adams all of the time.  I prefer the amber to the green.
Title: Re: Re-using commercial pry-off bottles
Post by: deepsouth on February 11, 2010, 10:17:31 PM
are there any commercial bottles that anyone know of that are unsafe to use for bottle condtioned beers?  i had never thought about this when bottling.
Title: Re: Re-using commercial pry-off bottles
Post by: robling on February 12, 2010, 04:42:42 AM
I have never personally had any bottles explode on me, and I have been re-using commercial bottles for years for bottle-conditioning. In fact, the only time I have ever even really thought about exploding bottles is when I have made sodas with the kids.

For beer, I have stopped using 12oz bottles though, and switched to the 22oz bottles, which are considerably more heavy duty than 12oz bottles. So my thought is, if you are really worried about it, switch to 22oz bottles.

One might venture to say (depending on the beer style - of course), if you end up with exploding bottles when brewing beer, you may want to take a look at your process (bottling too soon, too much priming sugar etc). You could always take a play from the soda maker's handbook, and refridgerate your bottles once they hit an acceptable level of carbonation - although you will slow to a crawl any further conditioning - if needed.
Title: Re: Re-using commercial pry-off bottles
Post by: mr_jeffers on February 12, 2010, 11:17:12 AM
I've been reusing commercial bottles for years, mostly Sam Adams, Long Trail and Magic Hat.  Only problem I've ever had was breaking a few necks with the capper, but that hasn't been a problem since I stopped sanitizing in the dishwasher with the heat cycle.

Unless they've changed bottle designs, I didn't have any luck capping a Hoegarden bottle.  After crimping the cap you can still spin it by hand.
Title: Re: Re-using commercial pry-off bottles
Post by: ndcube on February 12, 2010, 12:38:10 PM
I usually go close to 3.4 for belgians in SA bottles with no problems.  I tried to push a little further than that once and had one bomber (not a commercial bottle) explode.  It may have just been a problem with that one bottle but I backed down to 3.4 for the next batch.