I have noticed differences in bottle necks which may affect my capping.

I was merrily capping away with standard 12oz bottles with my Red Baron capper.

I decided to bottle hard cider in green bottles, and again was wailing away until I hit the case of Heinekens. The neck flange is shallow, the cap did not dimple as it did with bottles from Sam Adams, Dogfish Head, etc. When I gave them the twist test, the cap turned. It felt tight, but it turned; the caps on the 'standard' bottles (the ones with the long flange) did not.

Is there a trick or adjustment I can use with wing cappers, or do I need to move to a bench capper? I don't want to move to a bench capper, because I would have to adjust it each time I cap a bottle of different height.

Aside: I got a case of Stella Artois bottles; the thick neck goes up to the crown, so my old wing capper did not snug to the flange. A retired brewer gave me the Red Baron, which worked fine.

The obvious answer is: KEG! The other one is to use only "standard" bottles, but some of the bottles are distinctive.

In general, I am looking for answers about bottle/capper interfaces.

  • I have a similar problem... I replaced one wing-capper with another and it worked better for a while - do they wear out? go slack or something? I did think it was just variations in bottles, but now I am not so sure
    – Dave45
    Feb 25, 2015 at 12:51

2 Answers 2


I don't think there's a single easy solution to your issue with hand cappers, you may need to keep the two types around to cover as many as possible.

The Bench Capper would work fine for you, just sort the bottles by height and that way when it comes to capping you won't need to change the height as frequently.

There's not really a clear cap interface specification, manufacturers make their bottles different so that their bottles go back to them and not to other companies, or homebrewers.


You can loosen the capper bell a few turns, that way it will press lower and give a tight seal on those bottles that have a shallow flange. I do this all the time on those annoying, but beautiful bottles.

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