This section is from the book "A Treatise On Beverages or The Complete Practical Bottler", by Charles Herman Sulz. Also available from Amazon: A Treatise On Beverages.
The pressure of the gas in a bottle of carbonated beverage necessitates the employment of some means of holding the cork in its place. This may be done in several ways. The oldest method is merely to tie the cork fast to the bottle mouth with twine.
The wire cork fastener for ordinary saccharine beverages is in almost universal use, and all that is necessary to secure the cork is to push the cork fastener over the cork before removing the bottling-machine plunger.
For ginger-ale bottles wires are used to secure the corks. Also caps to prevent the wire from cutting into the cork. The name and address of the manufacturer may be stamped in the caps.
Fig. 285 is another style employed for wiring corks, being without a loop.
A tyer will be found of assistance in capping and wiring. It is usually attached to the back of the bottling table or arranged on a separate support, and consists of an iron arch sufficiently high to allow the bottle to be placed under it, and of a movable platform which can be raised by means of a pedal. The bottle while under the cork plunger of bottling table is seized with the cork-holding tongs and placed on the platform, and by pressing on the pedal with the foot, the bottle is brought up against the top of the arch, thus holding in the cork while the tongs are removed and the wire applied.
Fig. 283.- Wire Cork Fastener.
Fig. 284. - Cork Wire.
Fig. 285. - Twisted Wire without Loop.
Fig. 286. - Specimen of Wired, Bottle as per Fig. 285.
Fig. 287. - Style of Cap - I.
Fig. 288. - Style of Cap - II.
Fig. 289. - Tyer or Wiring Stand.
The best annealed broom wire should be used. It should be cut in pieces of proper length and each piece folded double, and twisted six or eight times to form a loop at the end. The helper on taking the filled bottle from the table with the cork-holding tongs and placing it under the tyer, quickly seizes a wire with his right hand, puts it around the neck of the bottle, giving it a couple of twists to hold it firmly in place, and passes the ends through the loop, draws tight, cuts oif the superfluous wire with shears, and presses the ends into the cork. The pressure in the bottle has by this time forced the cork against the wire, so as to make a neat-looking job.
Fig. 290.- Cork Holding Tongs.
When caps are used, place the metallic cap on the tyer previously to relieving the tongs, and holding the cork by the tyer, which will hold the cap in position by a magnet or other contrivance, when the bottle is raised by means of the treadle so that the cork is pressed firmly against the cap, and the wire can be adjusted.
With champagne bottles, both twine and wire are employed, and as we treat in this work of the manufacture of "fruit champagne," which belongs to the carbonated saccharine beverages, it will be found useful to know how to make the champagne-knot," as it is called. These cuts represent the different stages in securing the cork of a champagne bottle by twine. Make a sling (c, d, e), as shown in Figs. 1 and 2. throw it over the neck of the bottle, draw together under the projecting mouth of the bottle and sling the ends of the twine (b and a, 3) to a knot over the cork. A tying-lever is employed in this work.
Barnett & Foster, London, offer patent wires and tin capsules for champagnes which are illustrated in Fig. 294, and are a useful means of securing corks of fruit champagne bottles.
Fig. 291- English Tyer or Wiring Stand.
Fig. 292. - Champagne Knots.
Fig. 293. - Tying Lever.
Mechanical devices for wiring the corks have of late been put on the market in the United States and England. We append a descriptive illustration, as per Fig. 295.
The spools, four in number, on which the wire is reeled, are placed at the end of the rotating shaft, and attached to same, the latter being perforated with four holes to allow the wire to be drawn up to the operating jaws, which are threaded with the wire. The four ends are here brought together, and after the first twist is ready for business. The bottle is placed with the neck or cork directly under the two wires which go over the cork, thus forcing them in place. Then the foot is placed on a treadle, a cam operates a clutch, and sets the machine in motion, the wire-carrying and rotating shaft recedes, drawing the wire around the neck and over the top of the bottle, where a neat device places the top wires in the operating jaws, and the rotating shaft is sent spinning five times round, twisting the wire effectually. A pair of automatic shears then cuts the wire exactly in the middle of the twist, thus fastening the wire around the bottle, and at the same time leaving the four wires twisted at the end for the next bottle, which are again carried forward, caught by a pair of nippers, and the same motion repeated. Its rapidity depends somewhat upon the operator, as it will wire about as fast as a man can handle the bottles, A good speed, it is claimed, is from twelve to twenty bottles a minute. The machines are entirely new in principle, construction and operation.
Fig. 294. - Patent Wire and Cap, with Specimen of Finished Bottle.
Fig. 295. - American Wiring Machine.