What's a better capper?

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MrBJones

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I have one of the winged black plastic cappers that typically comes with an equipment kit. Capped 45 bottles last weekend, sometimes it worked smooth and easy, but other times took a little bit of muscle -- and that concerned me! What's a good step up? IS THIS ONE any good? Are there any others you'd recommend?
Thanks!
 
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MikeSkril

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Believe me...you want to get this one:
https://www.morebeer.com/products/ferrari-bench-top-bottle-capper.html

5571.jpg
 

flars

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Bench cappers can reliably cap the different styles of bottles that are out there. Standard is the 26mm bell. 29 mm bells are also available. I've had the Super Agata for years. No problems with it.
 

Homercidal

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If you are going to stop using your wing capper, then you DEFINITELY want to get some kind of bench capper. They are more reliable and work on all kinds of bottles. Wing cappers can be variable depending on the neck of the bottle.

The only downside to a bench capper is the amount of space it takes up, which isn't much more than a wing capper.

They are well worth the money if you are going to continue bottling for a while.
 

Homercidal

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Can those bench cappers cork bottles as well?

They aren't made to. I suppose an ambitious engineering type person could modify one to serve the purpose if they set their mind to it. They'd probably have to machine an adapter to squeeze the cork a little as it was being pressed into the bottle. And the capper would have to be able to be raised up high enough for wine bottles.

I bought a hand corker that works well enough with the right hammer. I think it cost $11.
 

flars

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You can cap bottles with an attachment for a floor corker, but you can not cork bottles with a capper. Corking bottles takes a lot of pressure. Floor corkers are usually made with steel tubing.
 

bendog15

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I've got both bench capper and butterfly capper. to be honest I love the red butterfly capper. I've bottled 1000's of bottles with it. Stick with domestic bottles and no problem.
 

myerstyson

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Bench capper all the way. Ruined a batch thinking my porter bottles were properly capped with a wing capper. 4 weeks later tasted the oxygenation.
 

Sadu

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I have been using a hand capper - basically a bench capper but you use a hammer instead of the pull down arm.

I love it - a bit scary the first few times but it does the job and isn't as slow as you might think. Can't be beaten for storage size and not as fiddly as the wing cappers.

This one belongs to a friend and I will have to give it back sometime but I'll be looking to make my own one of these rather than buying a wing/bench capper.
 

Photopilot

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That metal one you point out is junk. As pointed out it can break necks. I keep it around as backup but rely on the red wing capper for my bottling work which is few and far between because I mostly keg.

The best way you can make bottling easy is to convince your wife how much fun the process is. I made Berry Apple cider for her and we bottled it 2 weeks ago. It was the most efficient bottling process ever. Afterwards I tried to convince her a bench capper would be faster. She felt the red wing was fast and easy enough. One nice feature is the metal insert that goes around the neck can be pulled out and reversed to cap champagne and bigger bottles.
 

Homercidal

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FWIW a bench capper takes up approximately the same footprint of space as a wing capper. Mine takes a few moments to adjust for bottle height, and I have to adjust it if the bottles change height during capping, but I'd still rather use it than my wing capper. I should donate my wing capper to a good cause. It's just taking up shelf space.
 

JB_Brewing2

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I bought one of these and, yes, it is an improvement over the wing capper but I wound up having to use a small bar clamp to hold the head at a steady and correct height for capping 12 oz.'ers. A needed improvement is the replacement of the small red wedge that is intended to hold the head in place. It's made of fairly soft plastic which failed after ~100 bottles. Given this fault, I would still recommend this style. I just need to find a machinist who likes beer so I can have the plastic wedge replicated in metal. :mug:

This link worked for me:https://www.morebeer.com/products/ferrari-bench-top-bottle-capper.html
 

Sadu

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That metal one you point out is junk. As pointed out it can break necks. I keep it around as backup but rely on the red wing capper for my bottling work which is few and far between because I mostly keg.

Each to their own. I'm yet to break a neck with it and the guy I borrowed it off used it for years without breaking a bottle.
 

Photopilot

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Each to their own. I'm yet to break a neck with it and the guy I borrowed it off used it for years without breaking a bottle.

Its been a long time since I used mine. But since i bottle in primarily bombers and some champagne bottles and almost never in 12 oz bottles, maybe the variety of size and necks were the culprit. It did not happen often but when it did it meant at least 22 oz of beer wasted or 22 oz of beer I had to drink warm, flat and through gritted teeth to filter out glass shards.
 

TurnipGreen

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I vote for a bench capper. I had a wing capper that made it maybe two batches before the handles busted.

I have a really old bench capper I found at a flea market. I love it. It's simple and everything is metal. So no little plastic parts to break. You may be able to find one at a junk shop or flea market.
 

ba-brewer

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Its been a long time since I used mine. But since i bottle in primarily bombers and some champagne bottles and almost never in 12 oz bottles, maybe the variety of size and necks were the culprit. It did not happen often but when it did it meant at least 22 oz of beer wasted or 22 oz of beer I had to drink warm, flat and through gritted teeth to filter out glass shards.

Damn

This post needs to have "dont try this at home warning".

Glad to hear you only use that capper as a backup.
 

Vandulus

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I bought one of these and, yes, it is an improvement over the wing capper but I wound up having to use a small bar clamp to hold the head at a steady and correct height for capping 12 oz.'ers. A needed improvement is the replacement of the small red wedge that is intended to hold the head in place. It's made of fairly soft plastic which failed after ~100 bottles. Given this fault, I would still recommend this style. I just need to find a machinist who likes beer so I can have the plastic wedge replicated in metal. :mug:

This link worked for me:https://www.morebeer.com/products/ferrari-bench-top-bottle-capper.html

Amen to the wedge being a bit flimsy! If anyone has ideas on a quick and easy metal replacement, I'm all ears. It took me 2 or 3 batches to get the wedge in just the right place and now I'm afraid to mess with it for fear of it breaking.
 

JimEb

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Been thinking about getting a bench capper for a while now, but I think they are a bit overpriced. Just can't get myself to spring for one as my winged capper still gets the job done.

Thought maybe the bench capper would be easier to use so it might be easier to recruit help at bottling time from the wife or kids.
 

unionrdr

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It's easier to use, I think. But you do have to raise the lever straight up to adjust for bottle height on the fly. I got my Super Agata for $35 a couple years ago from a website. Well worth it in my opinion. I can use any bottles I want, including stubbies & short necks now.
 

officeboy

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I have both and started using the bench capper assuming it was better. Tried the wing capper when my capping person was a little slow and was amazed at how much easier it was. Haven't used the bench capper since. 200+ bottles with a wing capper and that is my go to now.
 

Homercidal

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Amen to the wedge being a bit flimsy! If anyone has ideas on a quick and easy metal replacement, I'm all ears. It took me 2 or 3 batches to get the wedge in just the right place and now I'm afraid to mess with it for fear of it breaking.

Odd. Mine is an older model given to me by a friend years ago. It has a straight gear drive and is completely adjustable through the whoel range of motion. I only need to slid the handle out of the side, let the bell drop down (gently) to the cap, and replace the handle.

Takes all of 10 seconds or less to adjust the height and the handle is perfectly situated for capping.

Not sure how the newer styles adjust.
 
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