View Full Version : Decanter Stopper
Ive seen lots of decanters with glass stoppers both old and new that are hollow. What is the purpose of this. Does anyone know. First thought might be that it is for measuring out portions, but that can't be. As soon as you turn the bottle back rightside up it all pours back out again! If it is just for looks you usually don't hold the bottle upsidedown!
I asked John and he (of course) basically gave me a half hour answer and he still didn't know :)
Hollow equals less glass which equals less weight and, therefore, less cost, both in manufacturing and shipping. That's my theory, anyway.
--Chuck Cowdery (http://cowdery.home.netcom.com)
As a cross check, Today at work I went back to the laboratory where we run chemistry experiments to look at the Pyrex glass stoppers. We have three different types: 1. Solid glass (usually the smaller stopers), 2. Totally enclosed but hollow glass stoppers (mostly of medium size), and 3. Those that form a cylinder with an open bottom, open to the inside of the container. These are usually the largest. Please keep in mind that we have the luxery of using silicone grease to help with the seal (you can also with your whiskey bottles, but I do not recommend it).
My personal guess is that a hollow stopper has a little more flexiability, which will give it enough ability to deform to make a better seal, and more importantly, make it easier to get unstuck. Glass may seem hard and inflexible, but it will flex some, and also grow and contract with temperature changes. Cycle a glass bottle and stopper through a few temperature changes and the stopper could become drawn tighter into the bottle. (temperature increases when sunlight strikes the bottle through the window, the neck opening gets a little bigger, the stopper falls further into the bottle, night comes, the bottle cools with a shrinking neck, stopper is now a little tighter, etc). A hollow stopper would be a little easier to 'wiggle' loose since the glass in the stopper has somewhere to go when flexed (inward toward the hollow part).
Just my guess, if I was a high class guy with a lot of high class decanters I could give you a better answer. Now, where did I put that plastic screw cap off of the Mogan David......................
Mark A. Mason, El Dorado, Arkansas
I know this was a really old subject but I just backed up to it. I believe Chuck is exactly right. Don't ship any weight you don't need to. It is one of the reasons PET (what you may call plastic) bottles took over and replaced glass in most of the beverage industry. It is the reason soft drink cans have gotten lighter with time. I've spent time in my past career trying to figure out ways to shave a little money out of costs while hurting absolutely no one -- nobody cares if the stopper is hollow or solid except the guy paying the freight!
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