I bottled my Boston Lager clone tonight. It never did ferment at the right temp, but it will still be fine beer. It tasted pretty good before bottling.
Every time I bottle, I remember a story I have been meaning to post. I call it "the infamous bottle exploding incident of 1996."
I was a grad student at the University of Nebraska. Turned on to the superb flavor of beer found at Lincoln's own Crane River brewery (now defunct, RIP), I decided to give home brewing a try. Kirk at Kirk's Homebrew on Cornhusker highway set me up. I did a number of batches and was very pleased. Eventually, I decided to try a pilsner.
I brewed it up and fermented it. Everything went fine. Then I bottled it. Still everything was normal... sort of. I had run out of bottles and still had about 2L of beer left. I had an empty 1.75 Jim Beam bottle nearby. "Hmmm" I thought to myself, "I wonder if I could put beer in that?" I never answered myself. I just went ahead and did it.
I filled the bottle up and twisted that cap on really tight and that was that. I was smart enough to think about what would happen if the thing did crack. I didn't want a mess, so I set the bottle in my empty bottling bucket just in case.
Five days later, things changed. The Jim Beam bottle suffered a catastrophic loss of structural integrity.
I was living in a house with three other guys. The basement, where I stored all of the beer, was unfinished, but one roommate had made a room in the basement with "walls" of blankets. My brother was another roommate and he lived in the master bedroom directly above where I stored my beer.
It happened in the middle of the night, of course. The bottle exploded. It blew!!! It was loud too. Needless to say, it scared the crap out of my brother and roommate.
In the aftermath, I was glad I put in the bucket. Shards of glass embedded in the plastic. I was amazing. I ended up ditching the bucket. Too make scratches.
But wait, that's not all. As it turns out, bottling beer in a whiskey bottle was not really the problem. Apparently, I either added to much priming sugar or I bottled too early.
During the next few days, at random times, bottles started exploding! It made the same sound as slapping two 2x4s together as hard as you can.
After about a half-case exploded, I and my roommates had had enough. Feeling like a bomb squad technician, I transported the remaining bottles to a utility sink full of water and submerged them. I opened the bottles underwater to prevent a huge mess and to absorb the force of any explosion. I dumped the beer :(
I learned a valuable lesson that week.