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Old 03-24-2008, 01:56 PM   #1
badun
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Feb 2008
NE Florida
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I have two dozen barely used flip tops (Grolsch-style) that I bought new from my local brew shop. I've subsequently switched to capping, but I hate to let those expensive bottles sit in the closet. The problem is they do not have a good seal and most of the beer that I've conditioned in them never develops as much carbonation as the ones from the same batch that are in plastic (PET caps) or glass with caps. So to make this a question, does anyone else regularly use flip tops and, if so, do you have recommendations for either improving the seal or replacement hardware? I hate to waste them since they're new and look so nice sitting in the fridge!

 
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Old 03-24-2008, 02:08 PM   #2
Yooper
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I use those all the time, but never had a problem with leaky seals. I guess you could take off the gaskets, and either replace them, or turn them over. That might help the seal. Also, when you cap with them, make sure that the are seated just right on the bottle before you snap it shut.
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Old 03-24-2008, 02:45 PM   #3
john from dc
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are these bottles perhaps larger than your others? are you leaving the same amount of headspace?

i only have experience with the 1 liter flip tops, and they do seem to take longer to carb than my regular bottles. they've ended up carbing fine, but after like twice as long.

my assumption is that the larger volume means it takes longer for the high pressure co2 in your headspace to dissolve into the beer.

plus if the headspace is not proportionally larger, too much pressure will develop in the bottle, putting the yeast to sleep before they've finished the job.

the above is somewhat informed from some reading i've done, but definitely just a hypothesis.

 
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Old 03-24-2008, 04:35 PM   #4
badun
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Feb 2008
NE Florida
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They are 16 oz. bottles, same as my plastic ones. My glass bottles (w/out flip tops) are 22 oz. and I have no problem with them. I forgot to add that I have a few real Grolsch bottles that I've used along with the ones I bought and they carbonate just fine. It just occurred to me that I can swap the hardware from one of the Grolsch bottles with one of the other bottles and that should answer the question as to whether it's the bottle or the flipper.

 
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Old 03-24-2008, 04:37 PM   #5
beergears
 
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Related question..: Are there better flip-top gaskets than others -- material, fit, supplier, etc.?

 
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Old 05-19-2008, 01:02 PM   #6
badun
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Feb 2008
NE Florida
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Finally got around to doing an unscientific study and here are the results:

My locally purchased flip tops still suck. The amount of priming sugar, recipe, and fill amount don't seem to matter - they still leak.

I swapped the mechanism from a Grolsch bottle and put it on one of my locally purchased bottles. Worked like a champ.

I got a free flip top from Midwest. Worked like a champ.

Therefore I must conclude that the tops or the closure mechanisms for my local bottles just suck. There's no brand name on the box or bottle so I can't steer you clear of them. I can endorse Midwest's brand and I would assume that if they sell replacement hardware that it works as well. I'll let my local proprietor know about the bottles. He never uses them, he kegs everything for his own use and uses caps for his competition batches.

 
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Old 05-19-2008, 01:25 PM   #7
brewt00l
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I wouldn't bother wasting beer on them to see if they leak...something highly carbonated like soda will establish that just as easy.

 
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Old 05-20-2008, 12:54 AM   #8
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In terms of gasket material, the replacements that I've purchased from Northern Brewer were made of what appears to be natural rubber. They're pink, smell like a pencil eraser, etc. I've had no problems with them sealing on Groslch or EZ-Cap bottles.

Grolsch and some of the German beers I've purchased have a bright red or royal blue synthetic rubber gasket (neoprene?). I've recycled these gaskets and used them once or twice more before pitching them. I read a link somewhere saying not to re-use them too many times as they will eventually wear out and not seal. I haven't seen the neoprene ones available new at any HBS. I think either style would give similar results.
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Old 05-23-2008, 02:02 AM   #9
ljsbeer
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Feb 2008
Ct.
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Are your fliptops plastic?If so,that is most likely the cause of the leak.File or sand the seam from the mold flat and smooth to make a better seal.I had the same thing happen to my beer with fliptops.Some would carb fine and some would not.After sanding the plastic tops smooth they all carb great.It doesn't take much to break the seal and loose your carb.Hope this helps.

 
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Old 11-26-2008, 07:31 AM   #10
Travion
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Nov 2008
Boston, MA
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I purchased 32oz flip top bottles and I could not get them to carbonate, which sucked !
Somebody gave me the hint to turn them upside down after bottling. Once I did that they did carbonated.
The only problem I had was that the carbonation got so much , that it leaked out of the bottles. So again it sucked.
I have decided not to use the flip top bottles and to go back to capping, as it just has been too much of a hassle.

 
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