What with this bottle??


Sr. Member
Nov 30, 2009
Central Florida
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Minelab EQ 800, XP Deus &
XP Deus 2
Found this bottle a while back but never could figure out why it has a round bottom?
I been told it was to lay the bottle flat to keep the cork wet?
What do you guys think?


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Silver Member
Apr 17, 2009
Cumberland Va
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Rounded bases were designed to do the opposite of most bottle bases - to ensure that the bottle was not left standing upright. The point behind the rounded bottom was to ensure that the bottle was left on its side so that the wired down cork would not dry out and shrink allowing the contents to loose carbonation and/or evaporate (Riley 1958). The typical rounded base bottle was made of thick heavy glass and used for carbonated soda, mineral water, and in particular, ginger ale (Munsey 1970). Some rounded bottom soda bottles actually have a small flattened area in the middle of the base that allows for the bottle to stand upright though somewhat precariously. These are referred to as "club" or "tenpin" in shape, "semi-round", or "egg-shaped" (McKearin & Wilson 1978, Elliot & Gould 1988, Jones & Sullivan 1989).

These type bottles are commonly referred to as "round bottom sodas" or "ballast bottles" since it is believed (and may be true) that many of them were imported from England as "ballast" (weight) in ships returning to the United States. A common variation is the "torpedo" bottle which is distinctly more pointed on the end with an bulging "amphora-like" body. The torpedo style was first used in England at least as early as 1809 when a patent was granted to William F. Hamilton. These type bottles are often referred to as "Hamilton's" by English collectors (McKearin & Wilson 1978). Torpedo bottles are also known by some as "bombs" (Elliott & Gould 1988). A picture of a typical pointed base torpedo soda bottle is pictured below right. It is embossed with "Walkden Aerated Water Co." (Manchester, England) and dates from approximately 1880-1890. https://sha.org/bottle/bases.htm

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