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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Bottling/Kegging > Capping with those special oxygen caps question
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Old 04-14-2008, 07:10 AM   #1
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Default Capping with those special oxygen caps question

I'm about to bottle my first brew and have the 60ish regular caps that came with the kit. I bought a package of those oxygen absorbing caps from Austin Homebrew Store when I bought my second kit and various other tools that will make my second batch easier. My questions is two fold. How to sanitize? (Vodka? anything that won't introduce oxygen?) and once I open the sealed package and only use like 6-12 caps will the rest of the caps I wanted to save for later batches be worthless? From what I've searched on the forum, I think I've either got to use all those caps at once or what I don't use will be ineffective on later batches.

Also thanks to this forum for the loads of information. I've been reading here at least an hour a day for the past 3 weeks and have learned so much so my next brews will be easier and hopefully successful.

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Old 04-14-2008, 07:18 AM   #2
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Some people swear that they have oxidation issues in the bottle. Personally, I've had beer that's been bottled for 9+ Years, and I can say that there is no appreciable oxidation issues....at least none that my pallet can detect. I would say that this doesn't mean much...But I usually have a pretty refined sense of taste.

Go with the caps in bulk from the LHBS.

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Old 04-14-2008, 12:23 PM   #3
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Use what you need and wrap up the rest and keep them dry. They activate when wet. I would use the Oxy caps on beers that you plan to age for an appreciable length of time. I count out haw many caps I'll need and put them in a bowl of liquid sanitizer and set a cap loosely on each bottle as I fill them. Every twelve bottles then, I'll go back and crimp them tight and but them in the box. Try to minimize the posibility of bottle dominos.

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Old 04-14-2008, 03:52 PM   #4
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I used them a lot, never had any problems. I put them in very hot water for 5 minutes. I was told this will soften the seal and give me tight seal on the bottle once I crimped them. Also the hot water kills any nasty's.

remember don't worry have a brew!

Bottling was fun, But it took a lot of work, now I bottle with the larger growler bottles and put the rest into kegs. I really like using the growlers, there's a nice size to bring to a party .

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Old 04-14-2008, 03:58 PM   #5
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From what I have read in the past, they are activated by contact with moisture/liquid so storage shouldn't be an issue if you don't get them wet. Generally, I see it recommended to sanitize them as normal immediately prior to use.

I don't bother with them so I am not speaking from experience...I just use regular old caps.

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Old 04-14-2008, 04:32 PM   #6
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My LHBS owner told me NOT to get the Oxy caps wet prior to use. The agent in the caps lining that absorbs oxygen will be neutralized and may also not seal properly. I keep my hands sanitized during bottling and just use the caps straight out of the bag. Something else I do is after sanitizing my bottles but before I place the beer in them I "flame" the bottle tops with a torch. Just a quick swipe fries any nasties that may have gotten on the mouths of the bottle. Never have I had an infected bottle using this process.

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Old 04-14-2008, 04:37 PM   #7
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You do not need to sanitize the caps before using. Breweries do not do this. Just don't touch the inside of the cap. After capping, turn the bottle upside down and back to activate the O2 absorbing properties.

Forrest

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Old 04-17-2008, 07:32 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brewmando
My LHBS owner told me NOT to get the Oxy caps wet prior to use. The agent in the caps lining that absorbs oxygen will be neutralized and may also not seal properly. I keep my hands sanitized during bottling and just use the caps straight out of the bag. Something else I do is after sanitizing my bottles but before I place the beer in them I "flame" the bottle tops with a torch. Just a quick swipe fries any nasties that may have gotten on the mouths of the bottle. Never have I had an infected bottle using this process.
Flaming the mouth of things has always been a mystery to me. It was practiced a lot in science in regards to aseptic technique. Unfortunately its kind of a flawed procedure because while that flaming of the mouth kills anything present on the mouth, it also expands the air inside the mouth of the container (bottle). When the bottle cools, a vacuum is created sucking air back INTO the bottle. If you've ever added hot wort/water to a carboy and after shaking capped and you hear that sucking sound when you let go, its the same principle.

When I was in college (1999-2002) it was funny to see the techniques recommended by the different professors. In general the older micro profs would flame the mouths of test tubes, while the newer ones never bothered. Flame your sample loop, not your container!

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Old 04-17-2008, 08:09 PM   #9
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I give them a quick dip in star san and crimp them on dripping wet. I figure the cap will be covered in star san for 30 seconds before it dries and a little star san in the beer doesn't hurt either.

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Old 04-17-2008, 08:18 PM   #10
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I understand where your coming from. When I flame them it's only for the briefest moment and it's incase I've touched the side of the sink or something else with the mouth of the bottle during cleaning. The bottle itself really doesn't pick up much heat as that I'm only zapping the mouth of the bottle to fry any critters that might want to join the party. I'm a creature of habit and I've done this since the beginning so until..... Plus, I like playing with fire

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