Mecmesin develops Combi Cork-i Extraction Tester for leading Scottish whisky

  • Mecmesin

To improve the quality and storage of their premium $1000 product, the R&D team at a leading Scottish whisky maker needed to optimise the design of their bottle stoppers. They decided that the strength and performance of their reusable stoppers could be ensured by systematic testing of the characteristics of both portions of the stoppers.

Cork portion:

  • bottle-neck finish
  • cork lubricant

Bar top portion:

  • Strength of the adhesive that binds the bar top to the cork portion
  • Torque - de-corking begins with a twist. Twisting of the cork must be possible using acceptable torque
  • Extraction force - the cork is pulled up and out of the bottle. Pulling of the cork must be possible using acceptable force

The maker's stoppers must comply with the ISO 9727-5 standard, which specifies a test method for determinining the maximum force needed to extract a cylindrical cork stopper.


Working closely with the R&D team, Mecmesin developed the Combi Cork-i Extraction Tester, an innovative multi-function cork extraction testing system that tests both phases of de-corking (twist and pull) synchronously. A manually operated chuck grips the cork and a bottle cradle secures the bottle. The cradle is positioned using thumbnuts and threaded columns and the bottle is locked into the cradle using quick-release toggle clamps.

When the test is begun, the chuck that is gripping the stopper rotates anti-clockwise and the cradle moves downward, mimicking the normal action of de-corking. Torque and force is recorded and the test ends when the stopper is removed. If data describing stopper performance over repeated opening and closing is required, multiple-cycles can also be programmed. The closing phase of the cyclic test is the opening test in reverse: that is, the chuck rotates the stopper clockwise and the cradle moves the bottle upward to meet the stopper's bar.

Torque data is sent to a PC running Mecmesin's Emperor Lite™ program and force data to the full Emperor™ program running on the same PC. A customised Excel® workbook combines the torque and force data for presentation of the test in statistical and graphical formats.

Other fixtures can be attached to the Combi Cork-i so that tests on cork shear and tensile separation of the bar top and cork can also be performed.


The Combi Cork-i Extraction Tester includes:

  • Bi-directional force and torque testing system
  • Rotary torque sensor capacity 15N.m
  • Digital display AFTI
  • Grips and fixtures for corks and bottles
  • Emperor™ software and Emperor™Lite software
  • Dedicated Excel® workbook

See also

Cosmetic packaging pull-off test

A bench-top testing system was required to repeatably test the pull-off force on a variety of cosmetic containers. The system needed to allow a relatively high volume of containers to be tested with the minimum level of training required for users. Mecmesin's solution avoided the risk of damaging the loadcell by excessive torque on tightening the collet grip, and the lipstick barrel was first inserted in the grip and then connected to the gauge by a flexible chain-link.

Food packaging made from thermoformed plastics and intended for freezing, requires testing to ensure optimum functionality when closing and sealing the container. The closing effort of the lid is measured by using a motorised force tester controlled by software together with a custom-designed fixture to hold standard-sized ice cream tubs. In addition the ‘top-load’ crush strength of the container itself can also be tested on the same machine to guarantee it is rigid enough to avoid buckling and spillage when the lid is applied.

Greek beauty product manufacturer guarantees production quality by updating to Mecmesin's digital torque testers

A manufacturer of a wide range of skin, hair-care, make-up and sun-care products based in Greece needed to replace their outdated torque testers with up-to-date digital torque testers to guarantee production quality and to ensure their products remained sealed. Mecmesin supplied the company with two Tornado 10N.m digital torque testers, which have the ability to test tamper-evident closures, an intrinsic part of their specification.

  • Jo Webb
  • Product Info
  • English
  • Created 27 Jun 2018
  • Modified 13 Nov 2019
  • Hits 584