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The soda siphon (also spelled syphon), also known as the seltzer bottle is a device traditionally used for dispensing carbonated (or soda) water, though modern usage has them carbonating a wide range of drinks.
The modern syphon was created in 1829, when two Frenchmen patented a hollow corkscrew which could be inserted into a soda bottle and, by use of a valve, allowed a portion of the contents to be dispensed while maintaining the pressure on the inside of the bottle and preventing the remaining soda going flat.
Soda syphons were popular in the 1920s and 1930s. The rise of bottled carbonated beverages and the destruction of many of the siphon manufacturers' plants in Eastern Europe during World War II led to a decline in their popularity in the years after the war. These bottles are still commonly used in some bars to make drinks.
Commercial production and delivery of pre-filled bottles of seltzer continued in parts of the U.S., Argentina (nationwide), Austria and Canada.
For making single use sealed bottles, or commercially refillable bottles in a seltzer plant, the bottles are first washed and then evacuated using a vacuum pump and a rubber hose slipped over the nozzle. The bottle with most of the air removed is then held upside-down under the surface of a tub of carbonated water, which is drawn into the bottle by the vacuum inside once the valve is opened. Sometimes a pump is used to force higher pressure into the bottle.
For portable 1 litre bottles, the head of the siphon bottle is removed for filling. A rubber seal and tube are also removed. Then about 1 litre of very cold water is added to the bottle; the bottle is not completely filled. The rubber seal, tube, and head are then re-assembled. An 8-gram CO2 charger is inserted and securely screwed into a port in the head; the port has a conical seal and a hollow pin that pierces the charger and lets the gas into the bottle. Once the sound of the gas bubbling into the water is heard, the bottle is shaken, then left to rest. Within seconds, the trigger pull will release seltzer water.
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