Medford resident Carl Stufflet's annoyance over repeated beer spills during a disc golf competition was the inspiration for Snap Capps, recently changed to Bottle Tops.
The bottle-mouthed lid that allows pull-tab beverage cans to be resealed helps prevent leaks and keeps out insects.
The first Snap Capp prototype was made of a 20-ounce Pepsi plastic bottle Stufflet had in his vehicle cup holder. Using a utility knife, he sliced off the top of the bottle and used a lighter to heat the edges so it conformed to the mouth of the can.
The heating and air-conditioning service manager joined up with Central Point resident Dave Gran, a machine operator, in July 2006 to develop commercial versions of the product and formed Snap Capp LLC, of Central Point.
Ramko Manufacturing in Hemet, Calif., put the invention into production in April 2007. Meanwhile, Bill Allen and Francisco Vallarta, of Allen Vallarta Wholesale, obtained distribution rights for U.S. markets.
In fall 2009, the inventors and distributor signed a licensing deal with Telebrands, the "as-seen-on-TV" company, and the name was changed to Bottle Tops.
"They are selling by the millions everywhere," Stufflet says.
The product was expected to be launched at Wal-Mart stores sometime this spring. Reader's Digest magazine included the invention in a review of late-night TV products in its February edition.