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Old 12-02-2008, 06:36 PM   #1
planenut
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Default help: corker tips?

I just bottled 30 bottles of Peach Apricot with a brand new two handle corker and no 9 x 1 3/4 corks.

There has got to be an easier way.

Almost all wanted to stop about 1/4 inch before being flush. It was not the adjustment, it was that the sides would slip past the lip. Then after putting weight on the corker w/out the sides touching it wouldn't want to budge w/out all my weight (200 lbs). Then it would go too far before I could stop it.

Did I mention the large Hickey on my neck that I developed by trying to have a 5th hand pressing down in the middle of the corker while my wife held the bottle. Ouch.

I know, this thread is worthless w/out a picture. Maybe later.

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Old 12-02-2008, 10:34 PM   #2
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I used the lever corker for about three years before breaking down and getting a floor corker. Sorry, but I believe this is your only option. I too had the very same seating problems with my lever corker. The frustrating thing was that some would seat all the way and some would only go 2/3 in the bottle. It was extremely irksome to have to pull perfectly good corks and then, maybe, on the 3-4 try the cork would seat. There seemed to be no rhyme or reson for it.

Save yourself the same grief and high blood pressure I experienced and spring for a $60 floor corker or, better yet, ask Santa to bring you one. You'll never look back.

BTW - Keep that lever corker. I found a magnum hock bottle that was about knee high and the lever corker was the only thing that worked.

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Old 12-02-2008, 11:08 PM   #3
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+ 1 on the floor corker, it rocks!

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Old 12-03-2008, 12:35 AM   #4
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I don't usually post pics of my ugly mug but here is a shot of my neck.. It looked much worse before an hour of ice and several more hours of conditioning..

I will definitely be looking for a floor corker.

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Old 12-03-2008, 02:01 AM   #5
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after seeing this pic it has made me want a floor corker even more ><
(just using a single lever corker atm, havnt had any real problems but some of the corks end up pushed an 1/8" below lip of bottle)

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Old 12-03-2008, 02:25 AM   #6
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I have never used a corker like you have but I just bottled a bunch of wine with a floor corker I borrowed from a friend and it was incredibly easy. I even had my 3yo daughter loading the corks. My local home brew store rents them. If you have one close ask them.

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Old 12-03-2008, 03:55 AM   #7
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I used my beer capper. Worked fine with used corks. Could be questionable, but probably as good as putting 5 liters at a time into the plastic bag from a wine box.

Now that my lathe is working, I guess I'll turn a 'funnel' to force new corks through and into the bottles?

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So far, I've had more experience thinking than I've had brewing....you don't think they are mutually exclusive, do you?

72 batches so far,
48 wine, mostly Loquat, peach, plum, prickly pear
23 beers and ciders
1 sauerkraut
1 Tequila, from a prickly pear wine experiment that didn't work. I call it "Prickly Heat"

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Old 12-03-2008, 04:13 AM   #8
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It seems the main problem is that the two clamps on the side don't really catch well on the top of the bottle where the diamater changes. Most of the time it slips past and keeps the cork from going in the last 1/4 of an inch or so.

Once it has slipped off, there is nothing compressing the cork so it has expanded and doesn't want to go the rest of the way. With the huge amount of pressure it takes to get it to move, once the last little bit is compressed, it will quickly slip way into the bottle.

My lhbs is a micro brewery and does not really support wine supplies. I'll have to look into a purchase or build..

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Old 12-03-2008, 08:20 AM   #9
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I've been using a hand corker and, if I understand your description right, have been having similar problems. My corks always stick about an 1/8-1/4 inch out of the bottle. Maybe 1 out of 10 corks will go all the way in, flush with the top of the bottle. This doesn't really seem to be a problem, though, as far as functionality. My first batch of wine is just about to hit the 1 year mark, and I have yet to have a bad bottle of wine because of it.

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Old 12-03-2008, 01:13 PM   #10
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Functionally it is probably ok but I was planning on giving some away as gifts.. I would like the presentation to be better.

Some went in too far and I am afraid that they may get pushed all the way inside when someone opens the bottle.

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