INFORMATION SHEET 4)

Water Bottles and Canteens

(Follow procedure for clear glazed as well as bottles coated with beeswax.)

1) Fill a container with lukewarm water-enough to fully immerse the vessel.

2) Soak vessel in water for 24 hours.  This will "prime" the vessel, and it needs to be done only once. WHY? The soaking process somehow makes the vessel less likely to fracture due to sudden changes in temperature-such as pouring hot coffee into it, for example. What I believe(and this is just my own theory) that happens is that tiny drops of moisture work their way into the clay, which is extremely dry from the firing process. When a very hot or very cold liquid is added to the vessel, these droplets help to dissipate and even out the temperature throughout the vessel, thereby reducing stress. Soaking also seems to give the vessel the ability to either retain heat or coolness longer. Priming is also what enables you to put a clay cooking vessel over an open flame or direct heat without fracturing.

3) Vessel can be wrapped with wool, skin, fur-whatever one prefers.  This helps to protect the vessel as well as to maintain the temperature of the contents. Click HERE for an example.

Click HERE for How to Make Net Bags

4) Use and enjoy  : )

NOTE: Very hot liquids should NOT be put in a vessel lined with beeswax, but are okay to put in a clear glazed vessel. Warm, soapy water is okay for cleaning all vessels.

NOTE ALSO: New bottles that have glaze on the inside will sometimes make strange pinging sounds. Do NOT panic, the vessel is not haunted by old Roman dieties or anything. ; ) What is happening is that the glaze, which is essentially glass, is adjusting its fit to the inner surface of the bottle. It will cease over time, and the bottle will still be watertight.

Special thanks to Leon Delgado of Legio XXIV Media-Atlantia for coming up with this wonderful clay water bottle idea as an alternative to plastic!

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