The crown cork (also known as a crown seal, crown cap or just a cap), the first form of bottle cap, was invented by William Painter in 1892 in Baltimore. The company making it was originally called the Bottle Seal Company, but it changed its name with the almost immediate success of the crown cork to the Crown Cork and Seal Company. It still informally goes by that name, but is officially Crown Holdings. Crown corks are similar to the Pilfer proof caps, as usage of both products is to seal the bottle.
The crown cork was the first highly successful disposable product (it can be resealed but not easily). This inspired King C. Gillette to invent the disposable razor when he was a salesman for the Crown Cork Company. The firm still survives, producing many forms of packaging. Prior to the invention of the crown cork bottle stopper, soda bottles had ordinary cork bottle stoppers and often had rounded bottoms so they could not be stored standing upright. The reason for this is corks have a tendency to dry out and shrink, which allows the gas pressure in the bottle to cause the cork to "pop." Storing bottles on their side prevents the corks from drying out and "popping." After the invention of the crown cork bottle stopper, this problem was eliminated, and soda bottles could be stored standing upright. Crown corks are collected by people around the world who admire the variety of designs and relative ease of storage. Collectors tend to prefer the term crown cap over corks. In Mexico, these are called corcholatas. In Spain as well as in South America, the name chapitas is used, while in the Philippines the term tansan is employed. After the discs of metal destined to be crown corks are punched out of the thin sheets of metal, the remaining waste is sold to air filter manufacturers to be used as retainers of the spun-glass filter material in furnace filters.
Crown cork bottle caps are prominently featured as...
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