Bottle hunting reccomendations

Pink*Sundew

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Oct 18, 2009
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I don't mean to be argumentative, but I would like to respectfully disagree with the above two posts. Any bottle hunter (and I haven't dug bottles in 30 years, so I have no personal dog in this fight) can tell you about or show you the damage that being in the ground does to bottles.

Most of the broken bottles found in old dumps were whole when put there. Freezing temperatures will crack glass. Tree roots grow into them and break them. Iron and other mineral deposits destroy the finish, and the embossing on the bottles gets scraped and worn by the dirt, as do any decals and transfer designs. Bottle lovers go through a lot of work and expense in trying to bring them back to their original beauty.

And as for estate agents throwing the old ones in the trash: doesn't happen. A deceased bottle enthusiast's collection will go to an auction or show, to be resold to collectors who will further preserve them.
 

Teegate

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And as for estate agents throwing the old ones in the trash: doesn't happen. A deceased bottle enthusiast's collection will go to an auction or show, to be resold to collectors who will further preserve them.

Only in a perfect world.
 

Stamos

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Jun 11, 2009
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Only in a perfect world.
Really? How many estate sales have you been to lately or are you just trying to support your stance on the issue?

I don't mean to be argumentative, but I would like to respectfully disagree with the above two posts. Any bottle hunter (and I haven't dug bottles in 30 years, so I have no personal dog in this fight) can tell you about or show you the damage that being in the ground does to bottles.

Most of the broken bottles found in old dumps were whole when put there. Freezing temperatures will crack glass. Tree roots grow into them and break them. Iron and other mineral deposits destroy the finish, and the embossing on the bottles gets scraped and worn by the dirt, as do any decals and transfer designs. Bottle lovers go through a lot of work and expense in trying to bring them back to their original beauty.

And as for estate agents throwing the old ones in the trash: doesn't happen. A deceased bottle enthusiast's collection will go to an auction or show, to be resold to collectors who will further preserve them.
You make valid points, but unfortunately they will fall on deaf ears as most replies within this ill-fated thread are against any form of taking bottles from the Pines unless it is through a perfect world scenario, full on archaeological dig.
 

manumuskin

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Jul 20, 2003
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Cold weather on it's own will not crack glass,the exception being if the bottle becomes full of water upon freezing the water will expand and if there is no escape it will crack the bottle.Water being the only liquid I"m aware of that expands upon freezing while every other liquid continues to contract till it freezes.
 

bobpbx

Piney
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Oct 25, 2002
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Cold weather on it's own will not crack glass,the exception being if the bottle becomes full of water upon freezing the water will expand and if there is no escape it will crack the bottle.Water being the only liquid I"m aware of that expands upon freezing while every other liquid continues to contract till it freezes.
Hmm. I'm not onboard with that stance Al. Even a little moisture in the ground will cause the soil to expand when frozen. And if the ground expands, the bottle gets squeezed. You've heard of frost heaving, I'm sure.
 

Teegate

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Really? How many estate sales have you been to lately or are you just trying to support your stance on the issue?

Do you honestly believe that there has never been a bottle collection that has not been discarded by either the collector or the family of a collector? The posters were only saying that by taking a bottle out of the ground it is NOT a guarantee that it will be safe in a collection. If anyone believes that they are wrong.
 

smoke_jumper

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Mar 5, 2012
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This thread started out as bottle hunting recommendations and has moved to an archaeology issue. Bottle hunting is not trying to preserve history. Just look at the name, it's hunting for a trophy to add to one's collection.
What's better for researching history? An undisturbed cracked bottle with all the other artifacts it was buried with or a preserved one sitting in a personal collection.
I have a small collection that I dug up as a kid on my family's property. When I'm gone I don't expect my kids to preserve it at all.
 

Stamos

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Jun 11, 2009
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Do you honestly believe that there has never been a bottle collection that has not been discarded by either the collector or the family of a collector? The posters were only saying that by taking a bottle out of the ground it is NOT a guarantee that it will be safe in a collection. If anyone believes that they are wrong.
I'm sure it's happened before, but I cannot believe it's very commonplace.

I respect everyone's point of view regardless.
 

manumuskin

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Jul 20, 2003
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Hmm. I'm not onboard with that stance Al. Even a little moisture in the ground will cause the soil to expand when frozen. And if the ground expands, the bottle gets squeezed. You've heard of frost heaving, I'm sure.
I would think the bottle would move with the soil.Now if it found itself pinned between two rocks I could see it being shattered but the soil around here is pretty much rock free and it would be free to move in the direction of the heave.I have found bottles by the dozens buried in the deep humus of my woodlot as the humus rots down over the years since I have been keeping the fresh leaves raked up for the past ten years and not one of them have been broken.They apparently have laid there for quite some time.I know as you say frost heave can split rocks but it's the ice that gets in the cracks that does it.If the glass has a crack in it then frost will split it but as long as it's crack free and free to move with the heave I can't see it breaking.Glass is basically a manufactured rock in a really useful shape and rock will not split till a crack is found that water can fit into.Now fire will crack glass an rock alike,especially when super heated and then cooled rapidly.Bottles also make nice bombs when filled with liquid and the cap is on tightly and then thrown into the fire. maybe someone can contrive an experiment to find out what the best way to kill a bottle is?
 

ninemileskid

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Sep 14, 2014
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Maybe not the BEST way but I would think more fun and, sticking with the historical aspect of the thread, more traditional, a .22. Of course, it would have to be a bolt or lever action.
 
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