US 2597483 A
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y 20, 1952 s. G. HEAD, SR 2,597,483
NIPPLE VALVE CONSTRUCTION Filed Oct. 19, 1949 S/DNEV .6. HEAD, SR,
A TTORNE K Patented May 20, 1952 NJPPLE- VALVE CONSTRUCTION Sidney G. Head, Sn, Los Angeles, Calif., assignor to Joseph Stell, Los Angeles, Calif.
Applicationoctober 19, 1949, Serial No. 122,314
This. invention relates to nipple construction for baby bottles and, more particularly, toa new and improved valve adapted to be used integral or in combination with nipples and bottlesofconventional construction used in baby feeding.
Nipples of conventional construction generally are made of rubber and are adapted for removable application to a bottle customarily made of Pyrex or other suitable glass or non-collapsible material. Holes are formed, usually with a needlegin the end of the nipple and nothing further is provided to insure an even flow. resulting from the sucking. of the, infant, nor the compression of the nipple during the feeding movement of the infant's jaws. Consequently, the bottle being normally held in an inverted position is emptied by the infant onlyby overcoming a vacuum comprising air space left at the top (i. e. the inverted bottom) of the bottle. Uneven feeding results and upon the removal of suflicient of the liquid contents to form a more or less forceful vacuum opposing the feed flow, large bubbles form in the nipple, or the nipple under such pressure frequently collapses, particularly if" the same be relatively old and lacking in sufiicient resilience. Moreover, the liquid flow. is irregular, being greater in the absence. of a back-vacuum pressure and less, even stopping, when the vacuum has, built up to a sufficient'extent.
Feeding. bottles vary normally from a capacity of four ounces to approximately eight ounces, whereas the nipple capacity, that is to say, the internal capacity of the nipple, is comparatively much less. The portion'of the nipple compressed by the babys mouth during feeding is even less than the entire capacity of the nipple, so that two dozen, or more, sucking movements may be necessary even under ideal conditions of even and unimpeded flow to evacuate an ounce of thefiuid contents of the bottle. It is, therefore, apparent that the compression of the nipple in and of itself and Without. strong sucking movement upon the part of' the infant has comparatively little effect. upon the capacity of the combined bottle and nipple. Only slight influence is, therefore. occasioned by the mere compression of the nip piev by the child. In bottles and nipples of .conventional. construction now commercially available strongsucking by the infant, regardless of its physicalability to do so, is required and even with such, strong sucking an adequate and even flow rarely results.
Various expedients. have been employed in the prior art inan attempt to overcome the above.- mentioned air block including provision of holes 1- Claim. (0]. 251-427) or escape ports adjacent the bottle. These fail to insure an; adequate-milk supply in even, controlled, and undiminished quantity without excessive. sucking action upon the part of the infant, inasmuch as the compression of the nipple continues to bear the same disproportionately small relationship to the bottle interior as where such auxiliary ports arenot-provided. Sucking; while therebyrendered easier, continues to be required.
In view of the above considerations, among others, it is among the objects of this invention tov provide a simple, economical, fool-proof, and easily sterilized nipple valve adapted to decrease substantiallythe interiordimensions of the effective feeding chamber; so that compression of the nipple results in an even, assured, and substantially metered flow ofthe nipple contents.
It is also among the objects-of this invention to provide a new and improved diaphragm for insertion' in a nipple to partition the nipple from the bottle.
It, is another object of the invention to providea new andimprovednipplevalve.
Another object of the invention is the provision, ina new and improved partitioning means; of new and improved valve means designed to insure a. continued supply of fiuidin the nipple;
Anotherfurtherobject of the invention is the provision in. a nipple valve of the character herein; contemplated of new andimproved, accurately'operating and fool-proof" construction.
Another further object, of the invention is the provision in a nipple control valve of means for audibly ascertaining the nature of the feeding process;
Yet another object of the invention'resides in the provision of a. universally adaptable combined diaphragm, and valve integral therewith. which may be incorporat'edinto and used with bottles and nipples of, commercially available size and construction, preferably without alteration.
It. is, moreover, among the objects of this, invention to provide. improvements in construction, materials, proportions, design. and action over prior art devices heretofore intended to ac-- a nipple secured thereto andincluding therebe- 3 tween a preferred form of this invention, the valve being open.
Fig. 2 is a vertical sectional fragmentary view similar to Fig. 1 but showing the valve in closed position, the nipple being in compression to force out the liquid contained therein in a direction as indicated by arrows.
Fig. 3 is a bottom perspective view of a check valve device embodying this invention in accordance with Figs. 1 and 2.
Fig. 4 is a vertical sectional view taken as on a line 4-4 of Fig. 3.
Fig. 5 is a plan view partially in section taken as on a line 5-5 of Fig. 4.
Referring more particularly to. the drawings.
there is shown by way of illustration but not of limitation a baby bottle having one form of commercially available nipple ll removably positioned thereon in a conventional manner.
Positioned within the valve, preferably contiguous with the lip ll of the bottle, is a diaphragm member [2 of preferred rigid construction formed of a material resistant to corrosion, such as stainless steel, for example. The circumferential periphery l3 of the diaphragm member is preferably in contiguous, touching, or even sealing engagement with the adjacent inner wall of the nipple thereby preferably sealing the interior [4 of the nipple from the interior of the bottle 10, but for the provision of a valve element therein which insures a one-way flow from the bottle to the nipple.
The valve means is designated generally by the numeral [5. It comprises a port It; formed. as illustrated, though not necessarily, through the center of the diaphragm l2 and preferably also includes radially extending communicating orifice portions H in an angularly spaced relationship to one another.
Loosely disposed within the port 16 is a valve element I8 roughly corresponding in the illustrated version thereof to a double-headed rivet having a valve head 18 and a retaining head 20, the latter being normally upset from the shank 2| of the valve element to restrain axial withdrawal of the valve element from the diaphragm member I2.
In the use of the present invention the valve means and diaphragm collectively referred to herein as the device is inserted in the nipple caxially therewith and through the open end 22 thereof, the valve head [9 being directed towards said opening 23 and the upset end 20 being directed towards the tip 22 of the valve. In this condition of the parts of the periphery l3 the device preferably engages the inner wall of the nipple in the enlarged portion 2 thereof.
The nipple with the device inserted as before statedis then placed over the lip l I of the bottle III in the conventional manner whereby said lip preferably engages or is contiguous with the inner surface 25 of the diaphragm member.
It will be apparent that the valve element 18 functions as a check valve against the diaphragm member and lifting it from its seat against the diaphragm surface 25 permits a free fiow of fluid from the bottle through the port l adjacent the shank 2| of the valve element and also through the orifice portions ll. Closing of the check valve occurs during compression of the nipple tip 23 by the infant. Subsequent expansion of the nipple tip draws the liquid through the check valve. 4
During said compression of the nipple 23 by the infant a pressure is developed within the nipple which is thereupon promptly and effectively sealed by the head 19 of the valve element by its closure over the port [6 and the orifice portions [1. Such compression forces the fluid out of the nipple through holes 26 provided in the end thereof.
Further successive compressions and releases of the nipple tip 23 successively result in discharge and filling of the nipple, or a substantial portion thereof, resulting in even, continued flow.
As the contents of the bottle are exhausted entrant air is permitted in relatively small and uniform amounts to enter the bottle through the valve means provided in the device. Colic is thereby prevented and other undesirable incidents of feeding from bottles and nipples of conventional construction are avoided.
Inasmuch as commercial valves are available in various sizes, the valve device may be made in correspondingly different sizes suitable to said different forms, respectively. Preferably in each form of nipple the valve device should be fit with a suflicient degree of tension to remain in a fixed position across the nipple and across the bottle lip. For this purpose the size may be such that the nipple in the area of its insertion is stretched to some extent. An effective seal and retainin fit is thereby made possible. The fit should be particularly tight in nipples not formed with an enlarged base portion to prevent dislocation of the. valve device within the nipple. In nipples formed with an enlarged base the valve device can be designed for retention within said base, being normally held by an annular flange ordinarily found in the bottom of the base in most commercial nipples. Axially extending integral flanges will hold the device in a proper position of co-axial alignment with and within any nipple or tube, if desired.
During use, the instant device gives an audible click. This is deemed desirable in that it permits less attention to the feeding with the continuous assurance of its effective progress without the necessity of continually examining the nipple and the bottle and the remaining contents. Such clicking sound can be avoided by the obvious expedient of forming the device or either of its parts from a non-metallic resilient rubbery or other material in lieu of the preferred stainless steel of which both parts are most desirably constructed.
Essentially this invention comprises the provision of a check valve in a nipple or in the bottle adjacent thereto or between the bottle and the nipple in such a manner that a chamber is formed in the nipple as a whole, or in a portion thereof, wherefrom fluid may be readily pumped through the holes provided in the nipple by compression of the nipple tip. The desired result requires that the nipple, or at least the tip portion thereof, be partitioned off to make a chamber adjacent the tip of the nipple of materially less volume than the combined interior volumes of the nipple and bottle.
By means of the instant construction and invention feeding may be accomplished through a long tube at one end of which is a nipple and a check valve and at the other end of which is a feeding reservoir. The length of the feeding tube does not materially affect the eflicacy of the pumping action created by the check valve.
Y Various forms of check valve and preferably integral diaphragm constructions have been contemplated by the inventor and this may comprise a rigid diaphragm and a flexible or rubber diaphragm in face-to-face contiguous relationship therewith secured to the rigid diaphragm around its circumference. The rigid diaphragm and the flexible diaphragm may have holes in staggered relationship whereby when the flexible diaphragm is against the rigid diaphragm a check is accomplished and when the two diaphragms are relatively separate, i. e., by a flow in the hpposite direction, flow past the diaphragms through said holes is permitted. Other valves which might accomplish the instant purpose might include any conventional form of check valve, including reed valves, swing checks, floating checks, and the like. The instant embodiment is preferred, however, in affording simplicity of construction, ease of cleansing, of handling, and of sterilization.
Having thus described my invention I do not desire to be limited to the particular form thereof illustrated and described, but intend that the invention is to be considered commensurate with the scope of any and all equivalent devices in accordance with the scope of the following claim.
A one-way check valve device for baby feeding bottles comprising a disc of thin, flat, smooth, and inflexible metal, having a concentric round opening therein and being further formed with radial fluid passages having open communication with the concentric opening. a rivet-like metal valve element including a dome-shaped head with a fiat undersurfaoe corresponding with and adapted to lie flush against an adjacent fiat surface of said disc of material in a closed position of the valve, a cylindrical stem coaxial with said head extending from said flat underside thereof and slidably disposed within said central opening, the end of said stem opposite from said head being upset to prevent axial removal of said stem from said central opening, said radially extending passageways extending outwardly from the center opening a predetermined distance and defining inwardly directed fingers having arcuate inner ends defining said central opening and defining guides for said stem, said head being of a sufficient diameter to extend over and close said central opening and the radially communicating passageways thereof.
SIDNEY G. HEAD, SR.
REFERENCES CITED The following references are of record in the file of this patent:
UNITED STATES PATENTS Number Name Date 734,277 Niemeyer July 21, 1903 943,951 Moody Dec. 21, 1909 980,184 Ballard et al Jan. 3, 1911 FOREIGN PATENTS Number Country Date 6,670 Germany of 1878