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bottle corks
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maggierose



Joined: 19 May 2008
Posts: 25

PostPosted: Mon Aug 11, 08 10:51 am    Post subject: bottle corks  Reply with quote    

Hi
When bottling wine,can you use the bottle with the screw top,which wine comes in??
I have some corks,but have difficulty getting them in,even after soaking,as have problems with my wrists.
They wont stay in the bottle long either,if the rhubarb one I made is anything to go by,that was lovely!!!!!!!!Ihave abot 14 gallons going now,the other problem i am finding is that,some of the dj which i got from boot sales,have as crew top,so the rubber bung doest fit properly,I realise they are probably for storing wine,but as I needed to use them,i cut of part of the rubber bung,which isnt ideal,where can you get the screw top.and is there a bung which does fit,if i want to ferment in them>????
thanks
Mags

Sarah D



Joined: 28 Oct 2004
Posts: 2584

PostPosted: Mon Aug 11, 08 11:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Try cork bungs on the demi-johns - they're more flexible and easier to push in. A couple of mine have narrower necks, and I have carved away the cork bung to fit.

For wine bottles, I find the screw top wine bottles have narower necks, ordinary corks won't fit, often popping out as you have found. I don't use them.

James



Joined: 11 Jan 2006
Posts: 2865
Location: York
PostPosted: Mon Aug 11, 08 12:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

is there any mileage in re-using the scerw caps on the bottles instead of corks? I've wondered this often but never tried it...

cab



Joined: 01 Nov 2004
Posts: 32429

PostPosted: Mon Aug 11, 08 1:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

They're a pig to sterilise are screw tops, and the wine doesn't mature in quite the same way. I avoid them for my homebrew.

maggierose



Joined: 19 May 2008
Posts: 25

PostPosted: Mon Aug 11, 08 1:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

thanks for the quick reply,any idea where to buy cork bungs,I get most things from wilko???
I never thought about the bottle neck being smaller on the bought wine,with screw top,usually buy it cos its easy to open,lol.

Next question,some of my wines have stopped fermenting,I cant tell sg,as didnt take it,and yoou say you need a starter reading,I have taken it on last one i did,what do you put in to kill the fermentation,is it campden tablets??
thanks
Mags

cab



Joined: 01 Nov 2004
Posts: 32429

PostPosted: Mon Aug 11, 08 2:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

maggierose wrote:
thanks for the quick reply,any idea where to buy cork bungs,I get most things from wilko???
I never thought about the bottle neck being smaller on the bought wine,with screw top,usually buy it cos its easy to open,lol.


I'll wager that if you ask in a restaurant, they'll let you have as many empties as you like. And Wilkinsons is good, plenty of online retailers too.

Quote:

Next question,some of my wines have stopped fermenting,I cant tell sg,as didnt take it,and yoou say you need a starter reading,I have taken it on last one i did,what do you put in to kill the fermentation,is it campden tablets??
thanks
Mags


Rack it off the sediment, taste it, is it dry? Take a hydrometer reading, unless it started off really sugary then the final reading will still tell you whether its fermented out. And yes, when racking the last time, mix a little of the wine with a crushed campden tablet and pitch that back in.

maggierose



Joined: 19 May 2008
Posts: 25

PostPosted: Mon Aug 11, 08 2:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

thanks ,I will do that,but i like a sweet wine,so how do I do that,and also what should I top the wine up with when racking,as obviously there will be a space where the sediment was,can I just use tap water??
thanks
Mags

cab



Joined: 01 Nov 2004
Posts: 32429

PostPosted: Mon Aug 11, 08 2:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

maggierose wrote:
thanks ,I will do that,but i like a sweet wine,so how do I do that,and also what should I top the wine up with when racking,as obviously there will be a space where the sediment was,can I just use tap water??
thanks
Mags


All depends on where you are in the process... Is this the final racking, is the wine shortly going to be ready? For the first racking, where there is a good thick sediment, top up with boiled water thats cooled down a bit. For the final racking I don't top up.

For a sweet wine, put more sugar in at the start or mid way through, or sweeten with glycerol before bottling. Might help to know what recipe you used?

James



Joined: 11 Jan 2006
Posts: 2865
Location: York
PostPosted: Mon Aug 11, 08 2:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

brewing shops sell non fermentable sugars to sweeten wine. Lactose (otherwise known as milk sugar) is the trational one to use. This can be added at the end of the fermentation without any risk of fermentation in the bottles. On-line brew shops sell lactose for 2.50- 3.00 for a pound (well...half a kilo). You dont need much to sweeten a bottle, so a pound of lactose goes a long way. Weight for weight, this stuff isnt quite as sweet as 'normal' sugar. Try a small quantity (say...a quarter of a pint), then add lactose gram by gram, tasting until its the desired sweetness, then multiply it up for the whole gallon.

I've also heard of people adding one or two sacharine tablets per bottle, easier & cheaper than lactose, but I wouldnt recomend this at all (becuase I cant stand the taste of sweeteners and becuase its linked to men 'firing blanks').

Nicky Colour it green



Joined: 25 Jun 2007
Posts: 8698
Location: Devon, uk
PostPosted: Mon Aug 11, 08 6:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

I use screw tops for my wine. vineyards are now recognising that they are ok, if its good enough for the, and of course you wine is less likely to be 'corked'


works fine for me

maggierose



Joined: 19 May 2008
Posts: 25

PostPosted: Tue Aug 12, 08 8:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

thnaks,I am near the end of fermentation,and have topped up with water,at the beginning,if i rack it,and leave it to clear,for a coupleof weeks,will i be safe leaving a big air space,worried it might go off>>
I will try adding more sugar at beginning,,but use the lactose if its at the end,thanks for the help.

I think I will try the screw tops since i have them,as the cork is difficult to get in them,as slightly smaller,i think.
thanks
Mags

cab



Joined: 01 Nov 2004
Posts: 32429

PostPosted: Tue Aug 12, 08 8:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

A couple of weeks with a little air gap oughtn't be a problem, just make sure the air lock is well topped up to prevent extra air getting in.

gil
Downsizer Moderator


Joined: 08 Jun 2005
Posts: 18379

PostPosted: Wed Aug 13, 08 12:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Demi-johns with screw top necks will take a rubber bung that is slightly smaller and narrower than the usual size. You can get these smaller bungs from homebrew shops, but not from Wilkos.

Chez



Joined: 13 Aug 2006
Posts: 35907
Location: The Hive of the Uberbee, Quantock Hills, Somerset
PostPosted: Wed Aug 13, 08 12:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

I ferment out and then sweeten with sugar when I open the bottle/demi for drinking. That way I stand less chance of an explosion.

I'd be worried about using screw tops because if you *did* have a refermentation, wouldn't the bottle be more likely to explode, rather than the bung just shoot out? Although I agree with the general sentiment that there's nothing wrong with using screw tops to store wine per se.

I buy my homebrew supplies online from stonehelm.co.uk. Very helpful.

maggierose



Joined: 19 May 2008
Posts: 25

PostPosted: Wed Aug 13, 08 1:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

thanks,i will see if I can find a store locally,as i doubt I will order enough to warrant internet order,thanks for all the help.Im really enjoying the site.
Iwas thinking of putting the cider in grolsh bottles,(not got any yet),was hoping local pub might have them empty>>
thanks
Mags

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