Eric Budesheim here from upstate NY. My wife, Karen, and I live in a small town called Averill Park. Averill Park is just outside Albany,NY off Exit 8 of I-90. What else, what else... I'm 48 years old, and I work at General Electric's Global Research Division in Niskayuna, NY as a Sr. Research Technician in the Electromagnetic's/Superconductivity Lab. It's both challenging and interesting but enough about work... lets take a minute to talk about a few things I really like to do...
Well, I have all sorts of interests, from investing to computers, motorcycles to technology, cooking to music, but the thing that has caught my passion for many years is collecting bottle caps (crowncaps). Many people can't relate to this hobby but then again... many can. My guess is that there are around 1500-2000 serious crowncap collectors worldwide and all of them are on the continual search for those extraordinarily diverse crown caps that come on the top of each bottle. I have been collecting these bottle crowns since about 1979, with a major effort launched in the mid to late 1990's. My current US collection stands at about 17,500 caps.
Over the course of the last 8-10 years however, my interests have shifted from only US caps to those which are from sets and series from all products worldwide. What is a set or series you may ask? Well to me, a set is different bottle caps that are placed onto the same product at the same time of production. For example if you were to purchase a 6-pack of Pespi or Coca-Cola and each bottle had a different cap on it chances are this is a 6 crown set.Set crowns are often special or promotional caps. Often with very picturesque images. Beverage manufacturers seldom make it that easy however. Typically you will find only one or two special crowned bottles in a 6-pack or case. Sometimes the producers make a game out of it where they may have put out a full set of caps but one of those caps is in extremely short supply... again making the collector continually hunt for (and ultimately purchase) their product. Series are a little bit different; to me a series is a special product that occurs year after year. Often these are special productions for Oktoberfest or for the holidays. In order to be part of a series of course the caps must be different from the producerís normal product and the series cap must also change from year to year. Most series are as simple as the product logo and the year printed on the cap. This may sound like an easy acquisition but some of these producers have been making these products and printing these caps for the last 20 years. Again, a tough find to complete an entire series from it's inception.
Full sets and series are very difficult to obtain in their entirety and I am constantly looking for more. Hmmm... maybe you might know of or have some from your little corner of the world.
Again, Sets/Series are a sub-set of the collection and I (like to think) am known world-wide for some of the rare complete sets/series in my collection. Set/series are my main collecting interest, followed by US cork-backed and plastic lined crowns. Additionally I also collect crowns with images of Owls, Cherries or Bat's. I currently am not collecting foreign (non-US) crowns. If indeed you see something you REALLY need in the trade stock, contact me I'm sure we can work something out.
So, lets talk more about bottle caps. Like I mentioned, I have about 17,500 caps in my domestic collection. Many of the caps I have are from breweries who are no longer in existence, many of those caps are cork-lined lined. Good cork crowns are a tough find, typically there's a nice price tag on a good cork backed crown, just watch some Ebay auctions. I also have a lot of caps which are straight from the bottlers or brewers. Most of these caps are unused (never put on a bottle). I would like to thank the numerous breweries who have responded to my requests for caps. I would strongly suggest that if you are into bottle caps at all you check out the website of the Crown Cap Society International (CCSI). In addition to the CCSI homepage you can take a look at Crowncaps.info or my LINKS page and there you will find other links which will open your eyes to crowns and cool stuff.
I should mention that I am very eager to TRADE with other crown collectors worldwide. As mentioned my main collecting interest is SETS and SERIES and products from US breweries produced or marketed outside of the states. I have thousands of traders available and will trade generously for caps I need. Send me an E-Mail and let me know what you've got! You can also search me out via Facebook, Instagram or Twitter. I do not mind direct message requests through these online platforms. The telephone is another option... serious collectors E-MAIL me for my direct telephone contact information.