Removing a Wax Seal

Sep 23, 2011
47
2
Earth
#1
Can anyone recommend the proper way to remove a wax seal from a bottle of spirits? Wax seals are becoming more common now that many legal jurisdictions have prohibited the use of lead. The seal is made from a hard wax. When cool it is brittle. When softened with heat it sticks like hot glue. Is there a tool that will score the wax so it breaks evenly without splintering and making a mess?
 
Jan 31, 2013
63
3
Yakima, WA
#2
I've ran into wine bottles with the same problem. I was told that all you have to do is use a wine screw, push the tip through the wax and into the cork. Once it's to depth, raise the cork screw. Supposedly, the wax will break in a nice even ring where the cork is rising out of the bottle. You now have an open, uncorked bottle.

Here's what really happens. The screw, even a sharp one, breaks off chunks of wax until you expose part of the cork. Then you screw it into the cork and place the cork screw on the lip to lift the cork. Once again, the wax explodes into shards of tiny wax chunks. Once you start lifting, it's apparent that the cork will not come out. At that point, you can score the rest of the wax on top of the bottle in order to release the cork. Yes, you'll just make another mess as the wax, clinging for dear life to the bottle, eventually releases into more particles, adding to the mess. You cuss at this point, shave off the wax on top of the bottle with a sharp knife and have to down half the bottle in order to calm your nerves enough to enjoy "a glass of wine". :)
 
Likes: 1 person
Sep 23, 2011
47
2
Earth
#3
That would work on a cork. Most bottles of spirits have a cork or plastic stopper with a knurled cap. This does give me an idea. I could tap the wax with a dull knife and just chip it off around the corner of the stopper.
 
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