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Publication numberUS2903148 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateSep 8, 1959
Filing dateJun 29, 1955
Priority dateJun 29, 1955
Publication numberUS 2903148 A, US 2903148A, US-A-2903148, US2903148 A, US2903148A
InventorsPhilip B Keller
Original AssigneeHarrison H Franklin, Harold W Sears, Charles T Erickson, James P Holm
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Bottle closure
US 2903148 A
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Sept. 8, 1959 I P. B. KELLER 2,903,148

- Y Y BOTTLE CLOSURE Filed June 29, 1955 IN V EN TOR.

ATTORNEY.

cap of rigid material. transverse Wall for sealing action across the top surface United States Patent BOTTLE CLOSURE 2 Claims. (Cl. 2 --45) This invention relates to bottle closures and is directed to a closure that may be used repeatedly for sealing bottles that have been opened and partially emptied. The

invention has special utility for confining carbonated beverages and the like.

Ideally, a bottle closure of this type should fulfill certain requisites. One of these requirements relates to sanitation. Any closure that is used repeatedly should be easily cleaned and preferably the portions of the closure that make actual contact with the bottle should be relatively smooth and free from material-trapping crevices so that such portions may be cleaned effectively merely by flushing in a stream of running water. The present invention meets thisrequirement by providing fully accessible smooth surfaces for bottle contact.

Another requirement is that the closure seals the bottle in an effective manner that may be relied upon even after the closure has been used for its purpose innumerable times over a long period of time. A feature of the invention in this regard is the provision of multiple sealing zones forming successive barriers against the escape .of gaseous fluid from the bottle.

Some prior art closures of this type form a single sealing zone by radially outward pressure inside the bottle neck. Other bottle closures form a single sealing zone by pressure of a sealing member against the top surface of the bottle rim, this sealing pressure being di rected axially against the rim. The present invention not only provides a sealing zone across the bottle rim but also provides at least one additional outer circumferential sealing zone around the neck of the bottle.

A further requirement is that a closure of this type may be relatively inexpensive. In this regard a feature of the preferred practice of the invention is that it consists of only two parts both of which may be produced by automatic machinery.

It is further desirable that a closure of this type be so constructed as to avoid any failure arising from metal fatigue. If a metal member is repeatedly flexed to carry out repeated sealing operations, there is always the possibility of the metal failing in the flexure zone, and esmaterial rather than flexure.

Broadly described, the invention meets these requirements by means of a molded sealing member of rubberlike material in combination with a cooperating retaining The sealing member has a top of the rim of the bottle and has a downwardly extending skirt for sealing action againstthe circumferential surfaces of the bottle below the rim. When the sealing member is free from restraint, the skirt has a natural "ice flare so that the skirt tends to expand for release from the bottle.

The retaining cap has a circumferential wall, the upper portion of which is cylindrical and the lower portion of which is flared. Downward movement of the retaining cap relative to the sealing member forces the top wall of the sealing member into a position across the bottle opening and at the same time the flared circumferential wall of the retaining cap cams the flared skirt of the rubber-like sealing member radially inward to form an outer seal around the bottle neck. A feature of one practice of the invention, as will be explained, is that the skirt of the sealing member is radially compressed to such extent as to cause the rubber-like material to flow, the flowing action resulting in certain desirable sealing effects: In another practice of the invention, how ever, the camming action rather than radial compression is relied upon primarily to effect the seal.

The various features and advantages of the invention may be understood from the following detailed descrip tion taken with the accompanying drawing.

In the drawing, which is to be taken as merely illustrative:

Figure 1 is a sectional view of the presently preferred embodiment of the invention in its release or non-sealing state with the retaining cap elevated relative to the rubberlike sealing member;

Figure 2 is a similar view of the device in its closed or sealing state with the retaining cap depressed against the sealing member; and

Figure 3 is a side elevation of the device in its closed or sealing state.

The drawing shows the neck portion of a bottle, generally designated B, of the usual type employed for carbonated drinks. The bottle has the usual rim bead 10 which forms a downwardly directed circumferential shoulder 12. Below the rim bead 10 the bottle neck has an enlargement 14 of curved profile which defines with the rim bead a circumferential groove 15. In this instance the circumferential groove 15 is more or less V- shaped in cross-sectional configuration. 1

The presently preferred embodiment of the invention comprises a sealing member, generally designated by the letter S, of rubber-like material together with a retaining cap, generally designated by the letter C, of substantially rigid material that confines the sealing member and slidingly embraces the sealing member. Thus the retaining cap C is movable between a retracted upper position, shown in Figure 1, which is the open or release position of the cap and a lower position, shown in Figure 2, which is the closed or sealing position of the cap. This retaining cap may be a formed sheet metal member or may be a molded plastic member.

The sealing member S has a transverse top wall 16 and an integral downwardly extending flared skirt 18. Preferably the skirt 18 conforms generally to the exterior of the bottle in the region of the rim bead 10. In the present embodiment of the invention, for example, the skirt 18 of the sealing member S is formed with an inner circumferential rib 20 corresponding to the outer circumferential groove 15 of the bottle, this rib providing an inner circumferential shoulder 22 for engagement with the downwardly presented shoulder 12 of the bottle. The molded shape of the sealing member S, i.e. the shape of the seal ing member when it is free from any restraining forces, is flared sufliciently to permit the sealing member to be lifted from the bottle. Thus in Figure l the inner circumferential rib 20 of the skirt 18 is expandedto larger diameter than the rim bead 10 of the bottle. Preferably the skirt 18 is flared to even greater diameter than shown in Figure 1 so that the skirt is, in effect, preloaded to press radially outward against the retaining cap C even when the cap is in the position shown in Figure 1.

The retaining cap C has a transverse top wall 24 and preferably this top wall has a relatively large central aperture 25. The retaining cap C also has a circumferential wall with an upper cylindrical wall portion 26 and a lower flared wall portion 28. The lower flared wall portion 28 terminates in a rounded inwardly-turned flange or lip 30 which preferably conforms to the grooved lower edge of the sealing member skirt 18, as may be seen in Figure 1.

At the upper release position of the retaining cap C shown in Figure 1, the sealing member S is expanded to its flared configuration and seats on the lip 30 of the retaining cap. At the lower or closed position of the retaining cap C shown in Figure 2, the sealing member S is completely enclosed by the straight or cylindrical wall portion 26 of the retaining cap C.

As heretofore stated, two different practices of the invention are contemplated. In the first practice of the invention, the movement of the retaining cap C from the upper position shown in Figure 1 to the lower position shown in Figure 2 contracts the inner circumferential shoulder 22 of the skirt 18 into engagement with the circumferential shoulder 12 that is formed by the rim head of the bottle. It is apparent that fluid pressure from the interior of the bottle thrusting upward against the top wall 16 of the sealing member S tends to move the sealing member upward and thereby brings the inner circumferential rib 20 into pressure contact with the downwardly presented shoulder 12 of the bottle. Thus, in this practice of the invention, the pressure of the gaseous fluid inside the bottle provides the desired sealing pressure in the circumferential zone of the shoulder 12.

- In a second practice of the invention, it is contemplated that at the closed position of the retaining cap C, shown in Figure 2, the cylindrical wall portion 26 of the cap member will radially compress at least one circumferential portion of the sealing member skirt 18 to form an effective seal around the outside of the bottle. In this particular practice of the invention, such a sealing action is provided in three circumferential zones, namely, around the outer circumference of the bead 10, around the circumference of the bottom of the groove 15, and around the circumference of at least a portion of the bottle enlargement 14. It is to be understood however that this sealing elfect may be caused to occur at only one or two of these three zones.

For the purpose of providing the three zones of radial compression of the material of the sealing member skirt 18, the thickness of the skirt 18 in the region of the rim bead 10 of the bottle is greater than the difference between inner radial dimension of the cylindrical portion 26 'of the cap and the outer radial dimension of the rim bead 10 of the bottle; the maximum thickness of the head 26 of the sealing member skirt is greater than the difference between the inside radial dimension of the cylindrical wall 26 and the minimum radial dimension of the groove 15; and the thickness of the skirt 18 below the rib 20 is greater than the difference between the inside radial dimension of the wall portion 26 of the corresponding portion of the bottle enlargement 14.

The desired dimensional relationships may also be expressed by stating that the inside diameter of the cylindrical wall portion 26 of the retaining cap C is less than the diameter of the rim bead 10 plus twice the unrestrained thickness of the sealing member skirt 18; this inside diameter is also greater than the minimum diameter of the circumferential bottle groove 15 plus twice the unrestrained thickness of the sealing member rib 22; and the inside diameter is also less than the diameter of the ad- :jacent portion of the bottle enlargement 14 plus twice the unrestrained thickness of the adjacent portion of the sealing member skirt 18.

When the device is placed on the top of a bottle with the cap member C elevated as shown in Figure l, and the cap C is forced domiward to the position shown in Figure 2, several sealing eflects occur. In the first place, the upper transverse wall 16 of the sealing member S is moved into sealing position spanning the open end of the bottle in contact with the upper surface of the rim bead 10 of the bottle. In the second place, the forcing of the flared wall portion 28 of the cap member C downward on the sealing member S causes the flared skirt 18 of the sealing member to be cammed inward to the position shown in Figure 2 with consequent radially inward compression of the rubber-like material of the skirt 18.

In this manner the rubber-like material of the skirt 18 is radially compressed, first, in the circumferential region of the rim bead 10, second, in the circumferential region of the bottom of the groove 15, and, third, in the circumferential region of the upper portion of the bottle enlargement 14. It is to be noted, that the rib 22 is under radial compression and that the sealing pressure exerted directly on the rib by the surrounding retaining cap is augmented by the fact that the radially compressed rubberlike material in the region of the rim bead 10, and again in the region of the bottle enlargement 14, tends to flow into the circumferential groove 15 of the bottle. Thus the rubber-like material tends to flow from both directions into the circumferential groove 15 of the bottle.

When it is desirable to unseal the bottle and remove the closure, the retaining cap C is shifted upward to permit the sealing member S to expand radially as shown in Figure 1 and continued upward movement of the retaining cap lifts the sealing member S away from the bottle. The central aperture 25 on the top of the retaining cap makes it possible to exert finger pressure against the upper surface of the sealing member S to facilitate the upward manual movement of the retaining cap C if desired.

A further feature of the preferred practice of the invention in this regard is the concept of using a suitable material at the mutually contacting surfaces of the sealing member and the retaining cap to reduce frictional resistance to the movement of the cap between its two relative positions. Various types of lubricating material may be used for this purpose. In the presently preferred practice of the invention, a silicone lubricant is used, the specific lubricant being known to the trade as Dow- Corning DC-4. If desired, the rubber-like body of the sealing mem ber S may be impregnated with a suitable lubricant for this purpose.

It is apparent that the described device is highly effective for its purpose and yet is of simple and inexpensive construction. An inspection of Figure 1 reveals that the interior of the sealing member S has a relatively smooth surface that is fully accessible for cleaning. It is a simple matter, for example, to place the device in inverted position under a stream of Water to flush out the interior of the sealing member.

Although the now preferred embodiment of the present invention has been shown and described herein, it is to be understood that the invention is not to be limited thereto, for it is susceptible to changes in form and detail within the scope of the appended claims.

I claim:

1. A closure for a bottle that has a rim bead forming a downwardly directed outer circumferential shoulder, said closure comprising: a sealing member of resilient rubberlike material having a transverse top wall to seat removably across the top of said rim bead of the bottle and having a downwardly extending continuous circumferential skirt integral with said top Wall to surround said bead and circumferential shoulder, said skirt having an inner circumferential rib to engage said shoulder, the unrestrained configuration of said skirt being flared downward and outward to clear said rim bead to permit the sealing member to be mounted on the bottle and to 'be lifted away from the bottle without interference by the rim bead; and a retaining cap having a circumferential wall embracing said skirt for sliding movement thereon between an upper position and a lower position relative to the sealing member, the upper portion of said circumferential wall being substantially cylindrical and of a diameter to confine said skirt against the periphery of the rim bead of the bottle in engagement with said circumferential shoulder at said lower position of the cap, said circumferential wall having a lower flared portion below said cylindrical portion to permit said skirt to expand clear of said rim bead at the upper position of the cap, the unrestrained thickness of the portion of said skirt that embraces the rim bead at said lower position of the cap being greater than the radial clearance between the rim head of the bottle and said cylindrical wall portion of the cap at said lower position of the cap, the unrestrained thickness of said skirt at said rib being greater than the radial clearance between the bottle immediately below said shoulder and said cylindrical wall portion of the cap, whereby downward movement of the cap to said lower position to bring said top wall of the sealing member into abutment against the top of the rim bead of the bottle compresses said skirt radially adjacent the periphery of said rim bead and also immediately below said shoulder with corresponding flow displacement of the material of the skirt and consequent high sealing pressure by'the skirt against the periphery of the bottle.

2. A closure for a bottle that has a rim bead and a tapered circumferential enlargement below the rim bead forming therewith a circumferential groove around the bottle, said closure comprising: a sealing member of resilient rubber-like material with a transverse top wall and a downwardly extending continuous circumferential skirt integral with the top wall to surround said groove, said skirt being formed with an inner rib to seat in said groove, the unrestrained configuration of said skirt being flared downward and outward for said rib to clear said rim head to permit the sealing member to be mounted on the bottle and to be lifted freely away from the bottle without interference by the rim bead; and a retaining cap having a circumferential wall embracing said skirt for sliding movement thereon between an upper position and a lower position relative to the sealing member, the upper portion of said circumferential wall being cylindrical to confine said skirt against the periphery of the bottle in the region of said circumferential groove of the bottle, said cylindrical wall portion of the cap extending downward at least to the lower edge of said skirt at the lower position of the cap, said circumferential wall having a lower flared portion below said cylindrical portion to permit said inner rib of the skirt to expand at the upper position of the cap to larger inside diameter than the outside diameter of said rim bead, the unrestrained thickness of skirt at said rib and immediately above the rib being greater than the clearance at the lower position of the cap between said cylindrical wall portion of the cap and the corresponding surfaces of the bottle, whereby downward movement of the cap from its upper position to its lower position compresses said skirt radially in the region of the groove and the rim bead with consequent flow displacement of the material of the skirt and conse quent high sealing pressure by the skirt against the periphery of the bottle.

References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,430,685 Sampson Oct. 3, 1922 2,649,090 Parsons Aug. 18, 1953 FOREIGN PATENTS 817,255 Germany Oct. 15, 1951

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US1430685 *Mar 26, 1921Oct 3, 1922Sampson Robert WilliamBottle cap
US2649090 *Sep 29, 1950Aug 18, 1953American Cyanamid CoRubber closure for pharmaceutical vials
DE817255C *Oct 2, 1948Oct 15, 1951Alfred BoeneckeVerschluss fuer Gefaesse, insbesondere Flaschen und Behaelter
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3158282 *Jan 8, 1962Nov 24, 1964Inland Steel CoShipping container
US3804284 *Mar 30, 1972Apr 16, 1974Mc Donald A Mfg CoCap for storage vessels
US3973688 *Aug 28, 1974Aug 10, 1976Ole Jacob KvamBottle closure
US4251003 *Jan 19, 1979Feb 17, 1981Toni CasuttBottle closing device
US4619094 *Dec 11, 1985Oct 28, 1986The Firestone Tire & Rubber CompanyNon-penetrating mechanical fastener for roofing membrane and method of applying same
EP0021728A1 *Jun 11, 1980Jan 7, 1981The Continental Group, Inc.Closure device for tumbler-like containers
WO2001034490A1 *Oct 28, 2000May 17, 2001Alcoa Gmbh VerpackwerkeContainer closure and method for closing and opening a container
WO2003068620A1 *Feb 12, 2003Aug 21, 2003Hamsund TorgeirA closing device for a container
Classifications
U.S. Classification215/272, 160/DIG.150
International ClassificationB65D45/32
Cooperative ClassificationY10S160/15, B65D45/322
European ClassificationB65D45/32A