Thermos Bottle / Vacuum Flask That Doesn't Dribble?

I have a large (1 quart) Stanley thermos that I like to fill with hot cocoa when I'm going to be out on a cold day. It has two fatal flaws:

1) It is IMPOSSIBLE to pour liquids out of it without having them spill and dribble all down the side.

2) The lid is supposed to be useful as a cup, but it's single wall stainless steel, with no handle and if the contents are hot, the cup gets WAY too hot to hang on to.

There are lots of alternative brands, and I even have a smaller Nissan bottle. It has an insulated cup/cap, and it doesn't dribble nearly as bad as the Stanley. However, it uses a stopper which has a push button valve, and it's impossible to clean the valve easily.

There must be something on the market that has an insulated cup/cap, and some sort of pour spout so it doesn't make a mess of everything.

I'm fed up with my Stanley, and I'd really appreciate some sugestions for other brands to avoid or take a look at. Oddly enough, none of the on-line info I've found really mentions if they make a mess every time you use one.


Reply to
Doug White
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A pump thermous would solve the spill problem

But you'd have to pack a seperate cup.

Reply to
John Ings

When I were a lad, in the lab, 40 or so years ago, I was taught the "correct" way to use those reagent bottles with ground glass stoppers. You know the type, the all-glass cylindrical ones with half spherical tops and ground glass stoppers with large flat tops, usually about a pint in size.

Especially designed for holding and handling dangerous chemicals.

Forgive me if I don't remember all the details accurately, but perhaps you used two fingers to hold the stopper and three to hold the reagent bottle while you poured some out into the container held in your other hand.

This was "proper" lab techinique, as taught in a good UK university - but it was still s**t. The glass top would dribble eg sulphuric acid on your two fingers, or perhaps the other three fingers, and if you used the alternative technique [don't mention the alterna...] you got dribbles down the outside of the bottle.

Plus ca change, plus, ca c'est la meme chose. [1]

Microbioligists' suppliers (and earlier chemists') have mostly solved the problems of handling volumes of between 1 ul and 1 ml, where surface tension can contain a quantity of liquid - but for anything larger, it ain't happened yet. I'm still hoping ...

Me? I grab a few sheets of kitchen roll when I use a thermos flask for drinks - when I use them for liquid oxygen I'm just very careful.

I don't know if you can do better than being careful - the traditional "lip" does work if you use it so that you don't wet the most-outside-est edge, and similar with a flask.

A challenge:

They have these fancy tops for plastic (eg PET) bottles now, you may have seen the type - they have vertical slots on the threaded part, and a wide flange on the bottle underneath that. The seal is a vertical pressure seal between the flat undersurface of the cap (usually an insert) and the top edge of the bottle.

The wide flange is partly to stop drips getting to the bottle and flowing down it, making it look bad - but the challenge is, what are the slots for?

No prizes, beyond "I knew".

"I guessed right" is probably even better :)

[1] Wow!, an unusually large lot of accents got missed out there.
Reply to
Peter Fairbrother

Pressure relief. Enough pressure, the insert lifts slightly, the slots allow the pressure to escape past the threads, the flange causes the "blowby" to disperse, preventing "rocket" effect, the top re-seats, the bottle stays sealed. A bottle-top analog of the self-resetting circuit breaker.

Boiled down, allows stuff that can/does ferment (like ketchup) without "going bad" after opening to be kept sealed to "food safety standards" without sealing it so tight the pressure can rise high enough to cause the container to explode.

Any "drip-stopping" behavior is an accidental side-effect that gets exploited for advertising purposes.

How'd I do?

Reply to
Don Bruder

When the threads are together the slot in the bottle threads is filled by the cap threads, and vice versa, unless they slots unusually align.

Reply to
Peter Fairbrother

Ahhh, a wise observation, but not entirely true, grasshoppa! I have yet to encounter one of these units where the slots (in both caps and the necks they thread onto) isn't deeper than the mating threads, leaving a clear passage to "outside" through both cap and neck threads. Often, the threads on both seem to be on a "raised" portion of the respective piece, allowing the groove to be substantially below the deepest point that the mating thread can reach.

In the cases where the "raised threads" concept doesn't apply (notably soda bottles and other carbonated beverage containers) the slots are also usually staggered "oddly" - The cap may have 3, 4, 5, even 6 or 8 slots, *NOT* symmetrically arranged, while the neck sports 3-5 similarly non-symmetrically spaced slots, almost guaranteeing that at least ONE will be lined up to provide an open passage.

I'm looking at a "flavored fizzy water" bottle right now - Some off-brand health-food sounding stuff that claims to be "nothing but wet flavor" (boy, if THAT doesn't inspire me to rush right out and buy a dozen cases... Guess it worked on SOMEbody, though, since it ended up here. But I digress...) This one has 7 slots in the cap, arranged in a way that strongly reminds me of graph paper with a logarithmic scale, and 5 unevenly spaced slots around the neck. Even the slightest loosening of the cap while squeezing the body of the bottle results in the bottle collapsing easily. It's doubtful that I can exert enough force with my hands to "activate" the "blowoff" feature without loosening the cap a bit, but it's quite clear that the slots ARE allowing free passage by the threaded area of the cap and neck.

Reply to
Don Bruder

I have a one litre Stanley and have had no problems. I make sure the arrow on the cap is turned in the right direction and open it a full revolution before pouring. I guess my hands are used to the heat and appreciate the wamth. I am a Tea Granny of the first order. Randy

Reply to
Randy Zimmerman

Buy the 1 quart Nissan. Has lid you unsrew a little and you can pour into the insulated cup and has a couple of extra plastic cups in the lid. Also, the Stanley's do not keep stuff hot all day. Years ago they did, but no more. The Nissan contents will still be hot the next day. I bought a second Stanley as I thought the bottle was defective as the stuff was cold after most of a day fishing. Tossed both of them. The only drawback of the Nissan is they bend easier than the stanley when dropped on the edge of a concrete block. Bill

Reply to
Bill McKee

I must have an older model (it's at least 25 years old). There are no arrows on the cap. The lip that seals against the gasket on the stopper is just a broad round edge, which guarantees that surface tension will carry some of the liquid around so it can dribble down the side.

Doug White

Reply to
Doug White


The blonde stopped at our job site and asked what that funny "bottle" was. We explained it was a Thermos bottle that could keep our hot things hot and our cold things cold.

Next day she came by with a brand new Thermos of her own. I asked what she had decided to carry in her new Thermos.

Her reply is coming. . . . . . .

Chicken soup and a popsicle!!!!

(top posted for your convenience) ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ Keep the whole world singing . . . . DanG (remove the sevens)

Reply to

If you are a Thermos junkie, try this place:

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Some are claimed leakproof as they are for briefcases.


Reply to
B. Peg

I silversoldered a small stainless pouring lip on my Stanley, using Harris Staybrite tin-silver solder. It was small enough that it didn't interfere with screwing the cap on, but it poured easily without dripping a drop for many years.

The cup is really plastic with a stainless "skin". I never found it objectionably hot.

Reply to
Don Foreman

Mine's a "Zojirushi," but they licensed to someone in the states a few years ago. Stainless vacuum flask, plastic shell. Stopper has an interrupted thread. Turn it a half turn and pour without drips.

Hardware store has 1 qt glass flask versions whose cup has a handle. Or, just carry around an insulated mug.

Nissan/Thermos has a great 1 pt. version with a flip-cap that locks closed. I've got one of those, too.

Reply to
Australopithecus scobis

Odd...Ive never had that problem with Old Green, and the cup is stainless steel, with a plastic liner.

And a screen door handle held on with a couple hose clamps. Its survived being run over by a D8, falling off a drilling rig derrick (did need a new cup though) and 30 yrs of abuse. I think I have about 5 of them kicking around.


"At the core of liberalism is the spoiled child - miserable, as all spoiled children are, unsatisfied, demanding, ill-disciplined, despotic and useless. Liberalism is a philosphy of sniveling brats." -- P.J. O'Rourke

Reply to

That was mine too. I was wondering if maybe his plastic liner came adrift somehow. The only thing I didn't like about that thermos was, the coarse threaded secondary cap (the one that could be slacked off to pour, without undoing the larger threaded cap) would get the liquid all over the threads, sorta hard to keep clean.

I'd still have that, if I hadn't left it in the mens room one one evening at work....


Reply to
jim rozen

A couple people recommended the Nissan Thermos bottles, and I just bought one. The top of the bottle has a small lip that prevents dribbling, and the lid is lined to avoid cooking your fingers. I had a 20% off coupon for a local housewares store, and they had them in stock. It looks very nice, and is just what I was looking for.

Thanks to everyone who responded!

Doug White One Happy Camper

Reply to
Doug White

Buy a "Thermos" brand. It will stay hot and not spill.

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