Author Topic: Commercial bottles  (Read 390 times)

Offline sarge99

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Commercial bottles
« on: March 30, 2018, 11:55:46 PM »
I was thinking about using 12 oz commercial beer bottles with standard caps for bottling my beer, are they safe to use?

Offline mainebrewer

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Re: Commercial bottles
« Reply #1 on: March 31, 2018, 12:38:16 AM »
Yes, for normally (around 2.5 volumes) carbonated beers.
The bottles with the twist off caps are difficult to get to seal well, however.
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Offline Philbrew

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Re: Commercial bottles
« Reply #2 on: March 31, 2018, 02:49:06 AM »
Yes they are fine as long as you keep your bottled beer at a reasonable temperature.  I've used commercial (not twist cap) bottles at up to 3.4 volumes of CO2 with no problems when kept at room temp or lower. 

But some yeasts that you think have worked all the way out can wake up and chew up some residual sugars if you store bottles in a place that gets hot, like 90F+.  Yup, I did that.  Bottle bombs.  What a mess!  And not just commercial bottles, any bottles.
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Offline Wilbur

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Re: Commercial bottles
« Reply #3 on: March 31, 2018, 04:20:32 AM »
I've noticed that after 4-5 uses they tend to chip, but thats where I always have gotten my bottles. A lot thinner than the ones you buy though.

Offline Robert

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Re: Commercial bottles
« Reply #4 on: March 31, 2018, 12:23:51 PM »
I've noticed that after 4-5 uses they tend to chip, but thats where I always have gotten my bottles. A lot thinner than the ones you buy though.
Even the ones you buy are pretty thin.  I still have a couple of cases of bottles bought at LHBS over 25 years ago.  They weigh well over 3 times as much as the ones sold now.  My rule with these more fragile bottles is when capping, wear eye protection and keep hands away from bottle: that is use a 2 lever capper, not a bench model you have to hold the bottle under.  A thin bottle can have its neck snapped by a two lever, but can be shattered in your hand by a bench capper, much worse. Rare but it happens.
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Offline Philbrew

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Re: Commercial bottles
« Reply #5 on: March 31, 2018, 03:48:50 PM »
I've noticed that after 4-5 uses they tend to chip, but thats where I always have gotten my bottles. A lot thinner than the ones you buy though.
Even the ones you buy are pretty thin.  I still have a couple of cases of bottles bought at LHBS over 25 years ago.  They weigh well over 3 times as much as the ones sold now.  My rule with these more fragile bottles is when capping, wear eye protection and keep hands away from bottle: that is use a 2 lever capper, not a bench model you have to hold the bottle under.  A thin bottle can have its neck snapped by a two lever, but can be shattered in your hand by a bench capper, much worse. Rare but it happens.
Good advice if you have to hold the bottle while capping.
I never hold the bottle but my bench capper is an antique that still works well.  Also, never had a bottle shatter while capping.
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Offline dmtaylor

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Re: Commercial bottles
« Reply #6 on: March 31, 2018, 03:56:00 PM »
I was thinking about using 12 oz commercial beer bottles with standard caps for bottling my beer, are they safe to use?

After using commercial beer bottles more than 4000 times, I can definitely say: YES, they're fine.
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Offline hopfenundmalz

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Re: Commercial bottles
« Reply #7 on: March 31, 2018, 03:59:35 PM »
I've noticed that after 4-5 uses they tend to chip, but thats where I always have gotten my bottles. A lot thinner than the ones you buy though.
Even the ones you buy are pretty thin.  I still have a couple of cases of bottles bought at LHBS over 25 years ago.  They weigh well over 3 times as much as the ones sold now.  My rule with these more fragile bottles is when capping, wear eye protection and keep hands away from bottle: that is use a 2 lever capper, not a bench model you have to hold the bottle under.  A thin bottle can have its neck snapped by a two lever, but can be shattered in your hand by a bench capper, much worse. Rare but it happens.

I weighed some battles years back. The lightest was a Bell’s at 180 grams. The heaviest was an Orval at 320 grams. You could tell that the Orval was much heavier in your hand.

So 3 times? That is 540 grams using the Bell’s bottle. That is 1.19 lbs per bottle.
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Offline Robert

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Re: Commercial bottles
« Reply #8 on: March 31, 2018, 05:20:17 PM »
I've noticed that after 4-5 uses they tend to chip, but thats where I always have gotten my bottles. A lot thinner than the ones you buy though.
Even the ones you buy are pretty thin.  I still have a couple of cases of bottles bought at LHBS over 25 years ago.  They weigh well over 3 times as much as the ones sold now.  My rule with these more fragile bottles is when capping, wear eye protection and keep hands away from bottle: that is use a 2 lever capper, not a bench model you have to hold the bottle under.  A thin bottle can have its neck snapped by a two lever, but can be shattered in your hand by a bench capper, much worse. Rare but it happens.

I weighed some battles years back. The lightest was a Bell’s at 180 grams. The heaviest was an Orval at 320 grams. You could tell that the Orval was much heavier in your hand.

So 3 times? That is 540 grams using the Bell’s bottle. That is 1.19 lbs per bottle.
Long time since I weighed 'em, was going by memeory.  My oldies are in that 380g range, and I have no newer ones to compare as I'm all draught these days. Point is,  they ain't what they used to be!  (Has anybody weighed a mega brew twistoff, out of curiosity? They are only designed to survive one use.)  And I have had a bottle shatter, as have a couple other folks I've heard about.  Just be careful.

EDIT  typo above, I meant to say my old bottles are in the 320g range like your Orvals (varying a bit, +/- 5g.)
« Last Edit: March 31, 2018, 06:00:10 PM by Robert »
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Offline hopfenundmalz

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Re: Commercial bottles
« Reply #9 on: March 31, 2018, 05:40:06 PM »
I've noticed that after 4-5 uses they tend to chip, but thats where I always have gotten my bottles. A lot thinner than the ones you buy though.
Even the ones you buy are pretty thin.  I still have a couple of cases of bottles bought at LHBS over 25 years ago.  They weigh well over 3 times as much as the ones sold now.  My rule with these more fragile bottles is when capping, wear eye protection and keep hands away from bottle: that is use a 2 lever capper, not a bench model you have to hold the bottle under.  A thin bottle can have its neck snapped by a two lever, but can be shattered in your hand by a bench capper, much worse. Rare but it happens.

I weighed some battles years back. The lightest was a Bell’s at 180 grams. The heaviest was an Orval at 320 grams. You could tell that the Orval was much heavier in your hand.

So 3 times? That is 540 grams using the Bell’s bottle. That is 1.19 lbs per bottle.
Long time since I weighed 'em, was going by memeory.  My oldies are in that 380g range, and I have no newer ones to compare as I'm all draught these days. Point is,  they ain't what they used to be!  (Has anybody weighed a mega brew twistoff, out of curiosity? They are only designed to survive one use.)  And I have had a bottle shatter, as have a couple other folks I've heard about.  Just be careful.

I have some old Rhinelander bottles I have never weighed, so when I get home I will weigh those.

Everything is one way now in the US, except maybe for Straub in PA. In Europe there are many that get reused.
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Offline sarge99

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Re: Commercial bottles
« Reply #10 on: March 31, 2018, 10:13:50 PM »
Just want to thank all for all the input, I have been using the wire cap bottles up till now, and now will try using the commercial bottles and cap my own. Thanks.