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Publication numberUS20060284001 A1
Publication typeApplication
Application numberUS 11/294,180
Publication dateDec 21, 2006
Filing dateDec 5, 2005
Priority dateJun 16, 2005
Publication number11294180, 294180, US 2006/0284001 A1, US 2006/284001 A1, US 20060284001 A1, US 20060284001A1, US 2006284001 A1, US 2006284001A1, US-A1-20060284001, US-A1-2006284001, US2006/0284001A1, US2006/284001A1, US20060284001 A1, US20060284001A1, US2006284001 A1, US2006284001A1
InventorsCharles Paradise, Louis Henry
Original AssigneeDesign For Living, L.L.C.
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Roll holder and dispenser for paper products
US 20060284001 A1
Abstract
A roll holder and dispenser having a base, a roll-receiving tube, and a handle securable in an end of the tube. The handle has two caps or buttons. Pressing one of the buttons allows the handle to be removed from the tube by causing a plunger in the handle to rotate so that prongs securing the handle to the tube are pressed into recesses in the plunger when the handle is pulled out of the tube. Pressing the other button moves arms into contact with the roll of paper products to restrain the movement or rotation of the roll. The buttons are spring biased so they return to their original positions when they are released. The base of the roll holder houses a suction device that permits the roll holder to be adhered to a countertop or other surface by moving a handle in a slot in the base.
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Claims(25)
1. A holder for paper products rolled around a central opening, the holder comprising:
(a) a base having a tube insertable into the central opening in the roll of paper products;
(b) a handle securable in an end of the tube; and
(c) a button on the handle, which, when pressed, prevents the roll from rotating.
2. The holder of claim 1 wherein the button, when pressed, has at least one arm that moves into contact with the roll of paper products and prevents the roll from rotating.
3. The holder of claim 2, wherein the button is spring biased so that, when the button is released, the at least one arm withdraws from contact with the roll of paper products.
4. The holder of claim 1, wherein the handle has at least one arm that is insertable and retractable through a hole in a housing of the handle.
5. The holder of claim 4, wherein, when the button is pressed, the at least one arm moves into contact with the roll of paper products to restrain its movement.
6. The holder of claim 1 further having a second button on the handle, which, when pressed, permits the handle to be removed from the top of the tube.
7. The holder of claim 6 wherein pressing the second button rotates a member in the handle to permit the handle to be removed from the tube.
8. The holder of claim 6 wherein the second button is spring biased so that, when the second button is released, the handle is securable in the top of the tube.
9. The holder of claim 1 wherein the handle includes a housing having a catch that secures the handle in the tube.
10. The holder of claim 9 wherein pressing a second button on the handle disengages the catch, allowing the handle to be removed from the end of the tube.
11. The holder of claim 1 wherein the base houses a suction device to secure the holder to a surface.
12. The holder of claim 1 wherein the button is on a top of the handle.
13. A holder for a roll of paper products, the holder comprising:
(a) a base having a tube to engage the roll of paper products; and
(b) a handle connectable to an end of the tube, the handle having a cap that is moved to permit the handle to be secured to and removed from the tube.
14. The roll holder of claim 13 wherein the cap is pressed to permit the handle to be secured to and removed from the tube.
15. The roll holder of claim 13 wherein the cap is spring biased so it returns to an original position after it is moved.
16. The roll holder of claim 13 further having a second cap that is moved to restrain the roll of paper products.
17. The roll holder of claim 16 wherein the second cap is pressed to restrain the roll of paper products.
18. The roll holder of claim 16 wherein the second cap is spring biased so it returns to an original position after it is moved.
19. The roll holder of claim 13 further including a suction device housed in a chamber of the base to secure the base to a surface.
20. The roll holder of claim 19 wherein the suction device is operated by moving a handle that extends from the suction device out through a hole in the base.
21. A holder for a roll of paper products, the holder comprising:
(a) a base having a tube to engage the roll of paper products; and
(b) a handle connectable to the tube, the handle having a cap that may be pressed to restrain the movement of the roll of paper products.
22. The holder of claim 21 further having a suction device housed in an internal chamber of the base, the suction device securable to a surface by moving a handle horizontally in a slot in the base.
23. The holder of claim 21 wherein the suction device is stuck to a surface by slidably moving a handle along a sloped surface of the suction device.
24. The holder of claim 21 wherein the handle has a second cap that may be pressed to permit the handle to be disconnected from the tube.
25. The holder of claim 23 wherein the first and second caps are on a top of the handle.
Description
RELATED APPLICATIONS

This application is a continuation-in-part of U.S. patent application Ser. No. 29/232,222, filed Jun. 16, 2005; U.S. patent application Ser. No. 29/232,229, filed Jun. 16, 2005; U.S. patent application Ser. No. 29/232,215, filed Jun. 16, 2005; U.S. patent application Ser. No. 29/232,220, filed Jun. 16, 2005; U.S. patent application Ser. No. 29/232,225, filed Jun. 16, 2005; U.S. patent application Ser. No. 29/232,321, filed Jun. 16, 2005; U.S. patent application Ser. No. 29/232,217, filed Jun. 16, 2005; U.S. patent application Ser. No. 29/232,271, filed Jun. 16, 2005; U.S. patent application Ser. No. 29/232,218, filed Jun. 16, 2005; U.S. patent application Ser. No. 29/232,248, filed Jun. 16, 2005; U.S. patent application Ser. No. 29/232,226, filed Jun. 16, 2005; U.S. patent application Ser. No. 29/232,228, filed Jun. 16, 2005; U.S. patent application Ser. No. 11/239,921, filed Sep. 30, 2005; and U.S. patent application Ser. No. 11/241,332, filed Jun. 30, 2005. The aforementioned applications are incorporated herein by reference.

FIELD OF INVENTION

This invention relates generally to a roll holder and dispenser for a roll of paper products.

BACKGROUND OF INVENTION

Many products are stored on rolls, including paper towels and tissue paper. Most devices that hold and dispense these rolls make it difficult for a person to change a roll or do not keep the roll from falling off the device. Further, many of these devices lack the ability to selectively restrain a roll's rotation and are often difficult to attach to an adjacent surface, such as a countertop, cabinet, refrigerator, etc.

For example, the paper roll may slide up on the roll holder if an individual paper section is pulled upward. If the upward pulling is not timely corrected, the roll may be pulled off the roll holder, or the roll holder may tip or fall over. A cap or handle may be installed on the top of the roll holder to prevent the paper roll from coming off the holder; however, the use of such handles increases the likelihood that the roll holder will tip or fall if the paper hangs up on the holder. Moreover, such handles can often be difficult to install on the roll holder.

Another problem with many roll holders is that they have no means to stop the movement of the roll of paper when individual towels are being removed from the roll. Thus, it is very difficult to tear off a sheet of paper towel without holding the roll, and several sheets may inadvertently unroll when the end of the towel roll is pulled. In such cases, the excess towel segments must be placed back on the roll, but twisting the roll in reverse. Some towel holders have a means to stop the movement of the paper towel, but these means require a gripping action on the roll of the holder. If a user's hands are messy or dirty, the towel holder or roll will also get dirty. Another method of attempting to solve this problem is to make the rotation of the towel more difficult, so that that each towel tears at a perforation; this, however, means that only one sheet can be torn off at a time.

SUMMARY OF INVENTION

The roll holder of the invention has an easy to install cap or handle that latches inside the tube or spindle of the roll holder, provides means in the handle to prevent the paper roll from rotating when individual towels are being removed from the roll, and a suction device to the holder securely on the counter or work surface.

The roll holder and dispenser of the invention comprises a tube attached to and upstanding from a base. An end cap is inserted into the top of the tube, and a handle assembly is inserted into the end cap. Prongs extend downward from the handle. The prongs have catches that lodge under a projection of the end cap. Behind each of the prongs is a longitudinal rib that it part of the plunger. The ribs prevent the prongs from moving inward and the catches disengaging. A unifying piece in the handle has downward extending arms that may be lodged inside the cardboard cylinder around which the towels or paper products are rolled to prevent the roll from rotating when a desired number of towel or paper segments have been unrolled from the holder.

The top of the handle has inner and outer concentric caps or buttons. Pressing on the inner cap or button causes a spring biased plunger in the handle to rotate. As the plunger rotates, longitudinal ribs are moved out of the way of the prongs, allowing them to flex backwards when the handle is pulled out of the tube. When the inner cap is released, the spring biased plunger rotates in the opposite direction, and the longitudinal ribs move back in place behind the prongs so that they cannot move out of place, thus securing the handle in the top end of the tube. The spring automatically returns the plunger, the prongs, and the catches on the prongs to their original positions in the handle.

The outer cap is biased by a separate spring housed in the handle assembly. When the outer cap or button is pressed, it, in turn, presses on the unifying piece, causing the unifying piece to move downward. As the unifying piece moves downward, its downward extending arms either make contact with the top of the roll of paper products or lodge in the paper cylinder in the center of the roll of paper products; in either case, the rotation of the paper roll is restrained, preventing roll from rotating. Release of the outer cap retracts the arms and allows the paper roll to rotate. The spring automatically returns the unifying piece and its arms to their original positions in the handle.

The base of the roll holder houses a suction device. The suction device comprises a suction pad, a pivot, a handle, and a plate with upstanding bridge-like structures with sloped undersides. The suction plate is attached to a central portion of the suction pad, and an outer portion of the suction pad is in contact with the counter or work surface to which the suction device is to be adhered. The handle extends from the sloped underside of one of the bridge-like structures, through the center of the pivot, along the sloped underside of the other bridge-like structure, and out through an elongated slot in a side of the base. The handle is positioned so that it is in sliding contact with the sloped undersides of the bridge like structures.

When the handle of the suction device is moved in one direction in the elongated slot, it slides along the sloped undersides of the bridge-like structures and pulls the plate (and the central portion of the suction pad) away from the counter or work surface to which the suction device is to be adhered. As the central portion of the suction pad is moved away from the counter, a partial vacuum is created between the central portion of the suction pad and the counter, causing the outer portion of the suction pad to adhere to the counter and preventing the roll holder from being moved or tipped. When the handle is moved in the opposite direction in the elongated slot, the central portion of the suction pad is moved toward the counter, relieving the partial vacuum, and permitting the towel holder to be moved to a different location on the counter.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a roll holder according to the current invention;

FIG. 2 is a sectional view of the roll holder as in FIG. 1;

FIG. 3 is an exploded view of the roll holder as in FIG. 1;

FIG. 4 is a sectional view of a handle according to the roll holder as in FIG. 1;

FIG. 5 is a sectional view of the handle as in FIG. 4, shown with downward extending arms of a unifying piece arms in an extended configuration;

FIG. 6 is a sectional view of the handle as in FIG. 4, shown with a plunger at a second configuration;

FIG. 7 is a perspective view of catches, a lower region of a housing, and part of the plunger according to the roll holder as in FIG. 1;

FIG. 8 is a perspective view of the catches, lower region of the housing, and part of the plunger as in FIG. 7, shown with the plunger at a second configuration;

FIG. 9 is a perspective view of the plunger according to the roll holder as in FIG. 1;

FIG. 10 is a top perspective view of an inner cap or button of the roll holder shown in FIG. 1;

FIG. 11 is a bottom perspective view of the inner cap or button according to the roll holder as in FIG. 1;

FIG. 12 is a top perspective view of the outer cap or button shown in FIG. 1;

FIG. 13 is a bottom perspective view of an outer cap or button according to the roll holder as in FIG. 1;

FIG. 14 is a perspective view of the end cap of the invention shown if FIG. 3;

FIG. 15 is a perspective view of the unifying piece according to the roll holder as in FIG. 1;

FIG. 16 is a perspective view of the housing of the invention shown in FIGS. 1 and 2 of the roll holder;

FIG. 17 is a cross sectional view of the housing of the roll holder shown in FIGS. 1 and 2;

FIG. 18 is a cross sectional view of the assembled housing, unifying piece, inner cap, and outer cap of the roll holder shown in FIGS. 1, 2, and 3 of the roll holder; and

FIG. 19 is a cross sectional view of a plunger, unifying piece, upper spring, and lower spring of the roll holder shown in FIGS. 1 and 2.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

Certain terminology will be used in the following description. Words such as “top”, “bottom”, “upper”, “lower”, “upward”, “downward”, “rightward”, “leftward”, “above”, “below”, and the like, refer to those same directions in the properly oriented drawings. Words such as “inward”, “outward”, “inner”, “outer”, “central”, refer to the same directions or locations at, toward, or away from the geometric center of the object shown or referenced in the properly oriented drawings. This use of such terminology is for convenient reference, is not intended to be limiting (as, for example, if an embodiment of the invention is inverted or reversed), and includes the words specifically mentioned, derivatives thereof, and words of a similar nature or import.

Roll Holder and Dispenser Assembly and Roll

As shown in FIGS. 1, 2, and 3, a roll holder and dispenser assembly 1 of the invention is provided for a roll of paper products 2. The roll holder and dispenser assembly 1 comprises a cylindrical tube 3, an end cap 4, a base 5, a handle assembly 6, and a suction assembly 7.

The roll of paper products 2 is preferably a roll of paper towels, but may also be a roll of tissue or some other type of flat, rolled products.

The roll holder and dispenser assembly 1 shown in the drawings and described in detail below has a base 5 and suction assembly 7 for securing the roll holder and dispenser assembly 1 to a counter or work surface. However, the base 5 may be replaced by a wall mount so that the roll holder and dispenser may be secured to a wall or other structural support.

Cylindrical Tube of Roll Holder

The cylindrical tube 3, which is hollow and may be made of plastic or metal, has a tube upper end 8 and a tube lower end 9. The tube lower end 9 is connected to the base 5, as shown in FIGS. 1, 2, and 3. The tube 3 may, however, be made integral with the base, as, for example, if the base 5 and tube 3 are made of plastic. As shown in FIG. 2, the base 5 houses the suction assembly 7.

End Cap of Cylindrical Tube

The end cap 4 fits inside and is secured within the upper end 8 of the tube 3 as shown in FIGS. 2, 3, and 4.

As shown in FIG. 14, the end cap 4 is cylindrical and hollow. The end cap 4 has an end cap upper end 10 and an end cap lower end 11. As shown in FIGS. 2, 3-6, and 14, a protrusion or end cap edge 12 is provided in or by the lower end 11 of the end cap 4 for uses stated hence. The interior of the upper portion 10 of the end cap 4 forms end cap notches 13.

Handle

As best shown in FIGS. 2 and 3, the handle assembly 6 comprises a housing 14, a housing cover 15, an outer cap or button 16, an inner cap or button 17, a plunger 18, an upper spring 19, a unifying piece 20, and a lower spring 21.

Housing of Handle

As shown in FIGS. 3 and 16-18, the housing 14 of the handle assembly 6 forms an interior chamber 22 and has a housing upper portion 23 that is funnel shaped and a housing mid portion 24 that is cylindrical. As show in FIGS. 3, 5, 6, 16, and 18, openings 23 a are formed in the housing upper portion 23. Prongs 25 extend downward from the mid portion 24 of the housing 14 and end in housing prong catches 26. The mid portion 24 of the housing 14 has housing notches 27. The notches 27 are configured to cooperate with the notices 13 in the upper portion 10 of the end cap 4. As shown in FIGS. 4-6 and 18, the housing also forms an interior ledge 28 within the interior chamber 22 in the mid portion 24 of the housing 14.

Housing Cover of Handle

The housing cover 15 is also generally cylindrical in shape and fits on top of the housing 14 to cover or close the interior chamber 22. The housing 14 and housing cover 15 may be made as a single piece integral piece if desired. Here, however, the housing cover 15 and the housing 14 are shown as separate pieces for ease of assembly.

Outer Cap or Button of Handle

As shown in FIGS. 2, 3, 12, and 13, the cylindrical outer cap or button 16 of the handle assembly 6 has an outer cap or button top 29 and an outer cap or button outer side 30. An outer cap hole 31 extends through the outer cap top 29 of the outer cap 16. A bar or rod 32 extends across the outer cap hole 31 and is attached to opposite edges 33 of the outer cap hole 31. The side 30 of the outer cap 16 has an outer cap lower end 34 forming a tab 35 a.

Inner Cap or Button of Handle

As shown in FIGS. 3, 10, and 11, the cylindrical inner cap or button 17 of the handle assembly 6 has an inner cap top 35, a inner cap side 36 ending in inner cap edges 37, and inner cap prongs 38 that end in inner cap catches 39.

Plunger of Handle

As shown in FIGS. 2, 3, and 7-9, the plunger 18 of the handle assembly 6 has a plunger upper end 40 and a plunger lower end 41. Longitudinal recesses 42 extend upward from the plunger lower end 41. As shown in FIGS. 3 and 9, the plunger upper end 40 forms opposite curved or angled channels 43. A pair of plunger seats 44 extend outward and upward from the plunger upper end 40. The seats 44 form ledges 45 and a slot 46.

Upper Spring of Handle

As shown in FIG. 3, the upper spring 19 is a common helical compression spring having an upper spring upper end 47 and an upper spring lower end 48. As best shown in FIGS. 4-6 and 19, the upper spring 19 is sized to fit within the outer cap 16 and around the seats 44 of the plunger 18.

Unifying Piece

As shown in FIGS. 2, 3, 4, and 15, the unifying piece 20 is cylindrical and forms an upper rim 48 a having a seat 49 and a lower rim or seat 50. The upper rim 48 a forms an indentation 48 b, as shown in FIGS. 3 and 19. Arms 51 extend downward and outward from the unifying piece 20 as shown in FIGS. 3 and 15.

Lower Spring of Handle

As shown in FIG. 3, the lower spring 21 is a common helical compression spring having an upper end 52 and a lower spring lower end 53. As best shown in FIG. 19, lower spring 21 is smaller in diameter than upper spring 19 and is sized to fit around the plunger 18.

Assembly of Handle

As shown in FIGS. 3, 4, 18, and 19, the handle 6 may be assembled as described below.

As shown in FIGS. 4 and 19, the lower end 53 of the lower spring 21 is placed on the interior ledge 28 of the housing 14. The unifying piece 20 is placed on top of the lower spring 21 so that the upper end 52 of the lower spring 21 is in contact with the lower seat or rim 50 of the unifying piece 20. The housing cover 15 is then bonded or otherwise attached to the top of the upper portion 23 of the housing 14. The upper spring 19 is placed inside the unifying piece 20 so that lower end 48 of the upper spring 19 is in contact with and seated on the upper rim or seat 49 of the unifying piece 20.

As shown in FIGS. 4 and 18, the housing 14 is placed over the unifying piece 20 so that the arms 51 of the unifying piece 20 are centered on and can move in and out of openings 23 a of the upper portion 23 of the housing 14.

The plunger 18 is inserted inside and down through the center of the housing 14, the center of the lower spring 21, and the center of the upper spring 19 until the ledges 45 of the plunger seats 44 rest on top of the upper end 47 of the upper spring 19. (See FIGS. 4 and 19) So assembled, the prongs 25 of the housing 14 are adjacent and spaced around the outer surface of the lower end 41 of the plunger 18, as shown in FIGS. 4, 7, and 8.

As shown in FIGS. 4, 5, and 6, the bar or rod 32 of the outer cap or button 16 is placed in the curved or angled channels 43 of the upper end 40 of the plunger 18. The outer cap or button 16 is moved downward until the lower end 34 of the outer cap outer side 30 is in contact with the top of the outward extending arms 51 of the unifying piece 20 as shown in FIGS. 6 and 18, at which point the outer cap 16 and the unifying piece 20 snap together when the tab 35 a of the side 30 of outer cap 16 fits or snaps into the indentation 48 b in the upper rim 48 a of the unifying piece 20, as shown in FIG. 18. (Also see indentation 48 b in FIG. 19.)

As shown in FIGS. 4, 6, and 18, the inner cap or button 17 is placed in the outer cap hole 31 such that the catches 39 of the inner cap prongs 38 are immediately under and in contact with the edges 33 of the outer cap 16, as shown in FIG. 18.

Operation of Handle

The handle 6 is operated by pressing on the inner button or cap 17 or the outer button or cap 16. The default positions of the inner and outer buttons 17 and 16 are shown in FIG. 4. In the default position, neither the upper spring 19 nor the lower spring 21 is compressed. In the default position, the rod or bar 32 of the outer cap 16 is fully received in and at the bottom of the curved or angled channels 43 of the plunger 18

In order to place a roll 2 of paper towels or other products on the holder 1, the handle assembly 6 must be removed from the tube upper end 8. The handle 6 is removed by first pressing downward on the inner cap or button 17, as shown in FIG. 6.

As the inner cap 17 is pressed downward, the plunger 18 is also forced downward by the force of the inner cap 17 on the upper end 40 of the plunger 18. As shown in FIG. 6, as the inner cap 17 is pressed, the ledges 45 of the seats 44 of the plunger 18 press downward on the upper end 47 of the upper spring 19, which causes the upper spring 19 to compress and, apart from the pressing force, bias the plunger 18 in the raised position, even though the plunger 18 is in the down or pressed position.

As the inner cap 17 and plunger 18 are pressed downward, the curved or angled channels 43 in the upper end 40 of the plunger 18 move slidingly downward along the bar or rod 32 of the outer cap 16. (The outer cap 16, as well as its bar 32, remain stationary during the downward movement of the plunger 18.) Since the channels 43 in the upper end 40 of the plunger 18 are curved, the sliding movement of the bar 32 in the curved channels 43 causes the plunger 18 to rotate.

As the plunger 18 rotates, the recesses 42 in the plunger 18 also rotate, and as the recesses 42 rotate, the prongs 25 of the housing are positioned over the recesses 42 so that when the handle 6 is pulled out of the upper end 8 of the tube 3, the prongs 25 can be pressed inward into the recesses 42 as shown in FIG. 8, thus disengaging the catches 26 of the prongs 25 of the housing 14 from the protrusion or edge 12 at the lower end 11 of the end cap 4. (See FIG. 4) (FIG. 7 shows the prongs 24 on the surface of the plunger 18, which is their normal or default position—i.e., when the inner cap 17 has not been pressed and the plunger 18 has not been rotated.) As the handle 6 is pulled out of the tube 3, the top face of the catches 26 (which are angled as shown in FIGS. 3 and 6) slides against the bottom edge 12 of the end cap 4, thus bending the prongs 25 inward so that the handle 6 may be removed in its entirety from the upper end 8 of the tube 3.

When the handle assembly 6 is removed from the tube 3 of the roll holder 1, the downward pressing or force on the inner cap or button 17 may be released. When the pressing force on the inner cap 17 is released, the upper spring 19 forces the plunger 18 upward via the force or bias of the upper end 47 of the upper spring 19 on the ledges 45 of the seats 44 of the plunger. As the plunger 18 is forced upward by the upper spring 19, the curved channels 43 of the upper end 40 of the plunder 18 slide along the rod 32 of the outer cap 16, and the plunger 18 rotates in the opposite direction. The prongs 25 are thus positioned so that the catches 26 of the prongs 25 may again engage the protrusion or edge 12 at the lower end 11 of the end cap 4 when the handle 6 is inserted in the upper end 8 of the tube 3.

After the handle 6 is removed from the tube 3, a roll of paper towels 2 may be installed on the tube 3 by placing the opening in the cardboard cylinder (not shown) in the center of the roll of paper towels 2 over the tube 3 such that the tube 3 is fully inserted in the cardboard cylinder of the roll 2. In this position, the roll of towels 2 rests on the top 55 of the base 5 of the roll holder and dispenser 1, as shown in FIG. 2.

When the roll 2 of towels has been installed on the tube 3 of the roll dispenser 1, the handle assembly 6 may again be inserted into the upper end 8 of the tube 3. As the handle 6 is inserted into the upper end 8 of the tube 3, the inner cap 17 is pressed (against the bias of the upper spring 19), causing the plunger 18 to rotate until the recesses 42 of the plunger 18 are aligned with the prongs 25 of the housing 14. This allows the prongs 25 to be pressed inward into the recesses 42 as the handle assembly 6 is pressed downward into the upper end 8 of the tube 3 and makes it possible for the handle 6 to be installed in the upper end 8 of the tube 3 without resistance from the prongs 25 as they slide against the protrusion or edge 12 at the lower end 11 of the end cap 4. After the handle 6 is inserted back into the upper end 8 of the tube, the inner cap or button 17 is released and, due to the bias of the upper spring 19, the prongs again engage the edge 12 of the end cap 4 the notches 27 in the mid portion 24 of the housing 14 are meshed with, and cooperating with, the notches 13 in the upper portion 10 of the end cap 4.

When the roll of towels 2 is so installed on the tube 3 and the handle 6 is in place in the upper end 8 of the tube 3, the end of the towel roll 2 may be pulled to unroll a towel from the roll 2. When an individual towel is exposed or extended from the roll 2, it may be separated from the roll 2 by tearing it along the typical perforations spaced at intervals along the roll of towels 2.

As an individual towel is pulled or unrolled from the roll 2, the roll 2 rotates around the tube 3. Additional individual towels may be unrolled from the roll 2 by continuing to pull the end of the exposed or unrolled individual towel. It is frequently desirable, however, to prevent the roll of towels 2 from rotating or continuing to rotate around the tube 3. If the towel roll 2 is prevented from rotating, is easier to separate an individual towel from the roll 2 at the perforation and impossible to inadvertently unroll too many individual towels from the roll 2.

In order to prevent the towel roll 2 from continuing to rotate around the tube 3 when towels are being dispensed from the roll holder and dispenser 1, the outer cap or button 16 is pressed downward. As shown in FIG. 5, when the outer cap or button 16 is pressed downward (against the bias of the lower spring 21), the outer cap end 34 in turn presses downward on the arms 51 of the unifying piece 20, causing the unifying piece 20 to move downward. As the unifying piece 20 moves downward, the arms 51 of the unifying piece 20 move through the openings 23 a in the upper portion 23 of the housing. The arms 51 are thus inserted into the cardboard cylinder in the center of the roll of towels 2 or onto the end of the towel roll itself, creating a friction with the towel roll 2 or inside of the cardboard cylinder of the towel roll 2 and preventing the roll 2 from rotating around the tube 3 of the roll holder and dispenser 1. When the outer cap or button 16 is released, the lower spring 21 returns the outer cap 16 and the unifying piece 20 to their original positions.

As the unifying piece 20 is moved downward the lower spring 21 is compressed by the force of the lower rim or seat 50 of the unifying piece 20 on the upper end 52 of the lower spring 21, as shown in FIG. 5. In this position the lower spring 21 biases the unifying piece 20 upward. Thus, when the pressing force on the outer cap 16 is released, the outer cap 16 is forced back upward into the default position shown in FIG. 4.

As shown in FIG. 5, as the outer cap 16 is pressed, the inner cap 17 and the plunger 18 are also moved downward via the force of the outer cap edge 33 (which surrounds the hole 31 of the outer cap 16) against the catches 39 of the prongs 38 of the inner cap 17. This force, however, does not cause the upper spring 19 to be compressed or the curved channels 43 to move relative to the bar 32 of the outer cap 16, because the lower end 48 of the upper spring 19 is seated on the upper rim or seat 49 of the unifying piece 20, and the unifying piece 20 is also being moved downward the same distance as the inner cap 17. As a consequence, the plunger 18 does not rotate, the bar 32 remains fully received at the bottom of the channels 43, and the upper spring 19 is not compressed.

Base of Roll Holder

As shown in FIGS. 1 and 2, the base 5 of the roll holder 1 has a top 55, at least one side 56, and a bottom 57 forming an opening 58. An elongated slot 59 is formed in the side 56 of the base 5.

The base 5 shown in the drawings contains a suction device that permits it to be secured to a work surface. However, the base 5 may be replaced by a mount so that the roll holder 1 may be secured to a wall, cupboard, or other structural support. In this case, the tube 3 can be configured so that it extends at a ninety degree angle from the wall or other support, or the tube 3 may be configured to be “L-shaped” so that the roll-receiving tube 3 of the roll holder 1 is parallel to the wall or cupboard. In this configuration, the handle assembly 6 may be made in the same way as described above and be installed and operated in the end of the tube 3 in precisely the same manner as described above, the only exception being that the unit would be mounted to the wall, cupboard, or other surface by screws, nails, adhesive mounts, or other well-known mounting methods and not be secured by a suction assembly such as suction assembly 7 described in detail below.

The base 5 may also be secured to the wall, cupboard, or other structural support by the suction device 7 described below. In addition, the base 5 may be set on a counter or work surface without use of the suction device 7 or, alternatively, may be made without the suction device and simple set on the counter or other work surface for use.

Suction Assembly

As shown in FIG. 2, the suction assembly 7 is housed inside the base 5.

The suction assembly 7 comprises a suction pad 60, a suction pad plate 61, a handle 62, and a pivot 63. The suction plate 61 has a top side 64. Two spaced-apart bridge-like structures 65 extend away and upward from the top side 64 of the plate 61. Each bridge-like structure 65 has an underside 66 that is ramped or sloped. The pivot 63 is situated between the bridge-like structures 65.

The suction pad 60 is larger in diameter than the suction pad plate 61. The suction pad has a central portion 68 and an outer portion 69. When the suction pad 60 is placed on the top side 64 of the suction pad plate 61, the outer portion 69 of the suction pad 60 extends beyond and outward from the suction pad plate 61. The central portion 68 of the suction pad 60 is situated on and connected to the top side 64 of the plate 61.

The handle 62 extends from the sloped underside 66 of one of the bridge-like structures 65, through a hole 70 in the pivot 63, along the sloped underside 66 of the other bridge-like structure 65, and outward thorough the elongated slot 59 in the side 56 of the base 5 above the bottom opening 58 of the base 5. The handle 62, so situated, is in sliding contact with the sloped undersides 66 of the bridge-like structures 65.

The suction assembly 7 is oriented so that the outer portion 69 of the suction pad 60, which extends outward from the plate 61, makes contact with the counter or work surface through the bottom opening 58 of the base 5.

Suction device 7 is operated by moving its handle 62 from one side of its elongated slot 59 to the other.

Movement of the handle 62 in one direction causes the handle 62 to slide along the upward slopes of the underside 65 of the bridge-like structures 65. As the handle 62 slides along the slope underside 65, it pulls the plate 61 from which the bridge-like structures 65 extend, in turn causing the plate 61 to pull the central portion 68 of the suction pad 60 away from the counter, while the outer portion 69 of the suction pad 60 remains in contact with the counter. As the central portion 68 of the suction pad 60 is pulled away from the surface, the air pressure between the central portion 68 of the suction pad 60 and the counter decreases, creating a partial vacuum under the central portion 68 of the suction pad 60, which, in turn causes the outer portion 69 of the suction pad 60, which is still in contact with the counter, to adhere to the counter.

Movement of the handle 62 in the opposite direction in the slot 59 relaxes the central portion 68 of the suction pad 60, causes the central portion of the suction pad 60 to move toward the counter, increases the pressure under the central portion 68 of the suction pad 60, dispels the partial vacuum, and allows the suction pad 60 to be easily removed from the surface to which it is was formerly mated.

Operation of the Suction Device

The roll holder 1 is placed in a desirable location on a work surface or counter. In this position, the outer portion 69 of the suction pad 60 is in contact with the countertop. The handle 62 of the suction device 7 is moved in the elongated slot 59. As the handle 62 moves in the slot 59 the central portion 68 of the suction pad 60 is raised upward, creating a partial vacuum under the central portion 68 of the suction pad 60 while the outer portion of the 69 of the suction pad 60 remains on the countertop. The vacuum or suction so created under the central portion 68 of the suction pad causes the roll holder 1 to stick or adhere to the counter in the desired location.

So adhered, the roll holder and towel dispenser 1 will not be moved or tipped on the counter or work surface by the unrolling or tearing of the individual towels from the roll 2, because the roll holder and dispenser 1 is firmly secured to the counter by the suction device 7.

If it is desired to move the roll holder and dispenser 1 to a different location, the handle 62 of the suction device 7 is moved in the opposite direction in the slot 59 in the side 56 of the base 5 to relieve the partial vacuum under the central portion 68 of the suction pad 60. The roll holder 1 may then be moved to a different location on the countertop, where it may again be adhered by suction in the manner stated above. The roll holder 1 may, of course, be moved by grasping the handle 6, or, if there are no towels 2 on the holder 1, by grasping the tube 3.

It is understood that while certain forms of this invention have been illustrated and described, it is not limited thereto except insofar as such limitations are included in the following claims and allowable functional equivalents thereof.

Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US7328869 *Aug 25, 2006Feb 12, 2008George Philip John ZiesSheet product dispensing device
US7401749 *Oct 14, 2005Jul 22, 2008Simplehuman LlcHolder for paper towel rolls with a quick-release retractable handle
US7419118Mar 9, 2007Sep 2, 2008Polder, Inc.Rolled sheet product dispenser
US7530525 *Mar 29, 2005May 12, 2009Simplehuman LlcHolder for paper towel rolls
US8203658 *Dec 31, 2008Jun 19, 2012Hong Fu Jin Precision Industry (Shenzhen) Co., Ltd.Screen protecting assembly for electronic device
US8443972Dec 23, 2011May 21, 2013Robert Bosch GmbhHang tag assembly for a hole saw
DE102006058027B4 *Dec 7, 2006Jul 9, 2009Ko Fung Products Industrial Ltd., Kwai ChungPapiertücherhalter
Classifications
U.S. Classification242/597.4, 242/597.7, 242/597.8
International ClassificationA47K10/38, B65H16/04
Cooperative ClassificationA47K2010/3863, A47K10/3836, B65H16/04
European ClassificationA47K10/38C, B65H16/04
Legal Events
DateCodeEventDescription
May 2, 2007ASAssignment
Owner name: LIFETIME BRANDS, INC., NEW YORK
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNOR:DESIGN FOR LIVING, LLC;REEL/FRAME:019235/0385
Effective date: 20070425
Dec 5, 2005ASAssignment
Owner name: DESIGN FOR LIVING, L.L.C., NEW YORK
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNORS:HENRY, LOUIS F.;PARADISE, CHARLES S.;REEL/FRAME:017328/0214
Effective date: 20051031