#1  
Old 02-14-2020, 09:01 AM
Cardigan's Avatar
Cardigan is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Posts: 4,991

Cone top beer cans


I understand cone top cans were popular among breweries in the 1930's and 40's but disappeared from the scene by the 1960's. Does anyone know why they stopped manufacturing and marketing cone top beer cans?
  #2  
Old 02-14-2020, 09:09 AM
BrotherCadfael is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: Vermont
Posts: 10,436
Almost certainly the cost of manufacturing relative to other styles then becoming available.
  #3  
Old 02-14-2020, 09:14 AM
kanicbird is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: May 1999
Posts: 20,056
Quote:
Originally Posted by BrotherCadfael View Post
Almost certainly the cost of manufacturing relative to other styles then becoming available.
That style being the pull tab. It also encourages one to drink the entire can instead of resealing the cone top, which tends to lead to more beer sales.
  #4  
Old 02-14-2020, 09:28 AM
Machine Elf is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Challenger Deep
Posts: 12,649
Quote:
Originally Posted by kanicbird View Post
That style being the pull tab. It also encourages one to drink the entire can instead of resealing the cone top, which tends to lead to more beer sales.
cone-top cans with crimped-on caps existed - meaning cone-top cans didn't have to be resealable.
  #5  
Old 02-14-2020, 09:35 AM
Snarky_Kong is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 8,533
Quote:
Originally Posted by BrotherCadfael View Post
Almost certainly the cost of manufacturing relative to other styles then becoming available.
Packing efficiency of a flat top can is also greater.
  #6  
Old 02-14-2020, 09:36 AM
Darren Garrison's Avatar
Darren Garrison is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Oct 2016
Posts: 12,810
Lack of stackability probably was a factor.
  #7  
Old 02-14-2020, 09:43 AM
kanicbird is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: May 1999
Posts: 20,056
Quote:
Originally Posted by Machine Elf View Post
cone-top cans with crimped-on caps existed - meaning cone-top cans didn't have to be resealable.
Wow didn't know that. But at $800/can I can see why they didn't last
  #8  
Old 02-14-2020, 10:00 AM
GaryM's Avatar
GaryM is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: St. Louis, MO 50mi. West
Posts: 5,275
First canned soda I remember was Super Cola in cone top cans. Early '50s.
  #9  
Old 02-14-2020, 10:29 AM
pakputeh is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Nov 2019
Posts: 17
I remember seeing a similar design for beer in the 80's in Japan. Later they replaced the bottle cap with a twist-off.

The basic shape is still popular in Japan as seen here:

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikiped...9985121%29.jpg
  #10  
Old 02-14-2020, 11:09 AM
Dewey Finn is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 29,875
Quote:
Originally Posted by Darren Garrison View Post
Lack of stackability probably was a factor.
That would be my guess as to the reason. Also, the cone top probably requires more material than the flat top.
  #11  
Old 02-14-2020, 11:32 AM
bump is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: Dallas, TX
Posts: 19,221
According to wikipedia, they were a sort of hybrid between flat-top cans and bottles that allowed them to be filled on bottling equipment, instead of requiring the brewery to invest in all-new canning equipment.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cone_top
  #12  
Old 02-16-2020, 08:24 AM
Kevbo is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 5,932
Quote:
Originally Posted by kanicbird View Post
That style being the pull tab.
Pull tabs came out long after cone tops became uncommon. From the 1950's, well into the 60s you needed a can-opener, which punched a triangular hole in the top. The non-tabbed cans persisted in cheap beer and store-brand soda well into the 70's, and Foster's into the 80's. Most bottle openers still have one end as such, but only really used for maybe broth or evaporated milk tins these days.
__________________
-Never tell a politician they are a two-bit whore, unless you want to be beaten silly with their bag of quarters.
  #13  
Old 02-16-2020, 09:51 AM
JWT Kottekoe is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: California
Posts: 1,028
I once read an article about the development of the modern aluminum can and it was fascinating. As mentioned above, it was all about reducing the manufacturing cost, with a strong emphasis on minimizing the amount of aluminum. For example the tapered top is to reduce the size of the lid, which has to use thicker aluminum to support the stress of the "stay tab". The concave bottom prevents a convex bulge under pressure that would cause the can to tip over. It is fantastic example of engineering design that we all take for granted.

Last edited by JWT Kottekoe; 02-16-2020 at 09:52 AM.
  #14  
Old 02-16-2020, 10:53 AM
Musicat is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Oct 1999
Location: Sturgeon Bay, WI USA
Posts: 21,650
Quote:
Originally Posted by JWT Kottekoe View Post
...The concave bottom prevents a convex bulge under pressure that would cause the can to tip over...
Not to mention making the can look like it contains more than it really does, "enhancing the consumer experience."
  #15  
Old 02-16-2020, 02:42 PM
mikecurtis is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Feb 2016
Location: chicago
Posts: 1,523
Quote:
Originally Posted by JWT Kottekoe View Post
I once read an article about the development of the modern aluminum can and it was fascinating. As mentioned above, it was all about reducing the manufacturing cost, with a strong emphasis on minimizing the amount of aluminum. For example the tapered top is to reduce the size of the lid, which has to use thicker aluminum to support the stress of the "stay tab". The concave bottom prevents a convex bulge under pressure that would cause the can to tip over. It is fantastic example of engineering design that we all take for granted.
The Ingenious Design of the Aluminum Beverage Can
  #16  
Old 02-16-2020, 08:50 PM
Saintly Loser is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Posts: 3,485
Quote:
Originally Posted by mikecurtis View Post
That was fascinating, and bizarrely relaxing.
  #17  
Old 02-16-2020, 09:55 PM
Snarky_Kong is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 8,533
Quote:
Originally Posted by Saintly Loser View Post
That was fascinating, and bizarrely relaxing.
Pretty much every video he does is wonderful.
  #18  
Old 02-16-2020, 10:11 PM
JWT Kottekoe is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: California
Posts: 1,028
I believe the article I was referring to appeared in the American Heritage Magazine of Invention and Technology, to which I subscribed. I can't find the article with all the pictures showing evolution of beer cans, but I think this link has the text. The video cited above provides a great description of the current design, but not much about the previous designs and their flaws.

The author makes the point that invention is a continuous process of improving on imperfections, leading to better and better designs over long periods of time.

Form Follows Failure -- Invention is an unending succession of imperfections. A case in point: the beer can.
Invention and Technology, Fall 1992.
  #19  
Old 02-16-2020, 11:38 PM
E-DUB's Avatar
E-DUB is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 4,999
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kevbo View Post
Pull tabs came out long after cone tops became uncommon. From the 1950's, well into the 60s you needed a can-opener, which punched a triangular hole in the top. The non-tabbed cans persisted in cheap beer and store-brand soda well into the 70's, and Foster's into the 80's. Most bottle openers still have one end as such, but only really used for maybe broth or evaporated milk tins these days.
AKA: Church Key
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 03:11 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

Send questions for Cecil Adams to: cecil@straightdope.com

Send comments about this website to: webmaster@straightdope.com

Terms of Use / Privacy Policy

Advertise on the Straight Dope!
(Your direct line to thousands of the smartest, hippest people on the planet, plus a few total dipsticks.)

Copyright 2019 STM Reader, LLC.

 
Copyright © 2017