US 2954903 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Oct. 4, 1960 l.. M. coLLlNs DISPENSER VALVE `FOR PREssURIzED CONTAINERS Filed Oct. l1, 1957 INVENTOR.
EON/@ep M Cou /Ns DISPENSER VALVE FOR PRESSURIZED CGNTAINERS l l Leonard M. Collins, Los Angeles, Calif., `assignor to Pressure Dispensers, Inc., `a corporation of California Filed Oct. 11,1957, Ser. No. 689,533
12 Claims. (Cl. 222-394) This invention relates generally to dispenser valves and more particularly to an improved valve for dispensing aerated liquids contained under pressure, such as pressurized whipped cream and the like.
It has become a well-accepted practice to package cerp tain liquids in gas-pressurized dispensers, since this means of packaging facilitates dispensing, aids in preserving the materials, and aerates or foams the dispensed liquid. In this method of packaging, a gas is often used which -liquifies at only moderately subnormal temperatures and atmospheric pressure, and may be kept in liquid state by moderate pressures. Also, it is desirable in many applications to use gases which are relatively soluble in the liquid to be dispensed. Whipped cream, shaving cream and insect spray are but a few of the materials sometimes packaged in this manner.
To make this type of packaging practical, it is necessary that the pressurized container be equipped with a simple, inexpensive valve which can form an adequate seal against the internal press-ure but may be quickly and easily opened for controlled release of the liquid and/or gas. Several different types of valves have been utilized for this purpose, but the poppet check valve type which carries a poppet member in a bored nozzle is one of the more acceptable types. Those poppet check valves used prior to this invention have certain undesirable aspects which need improvemenhhowever. For one thing, the valves used prior to this invention do not form as effective a seal as desirable and are difficult to assemble.
Also, a requirement of valves used in 4this type of application is that they permit the container to be iilled and` pressurized after, the valve is installed. Originally, the containers were iilled by feeding the material through the valve under gas` pressure. With this method, the container need only be brought to the proper ill level and pressure, and then the feeding pressure instantaneously released. When this happens, the sudden rush of the containers contents outward through the nozzle bore caused by .the sudden excess of internal pressure over external pressure forces the poppet outward and closes the valve.
Another method of filling hasV been found advantageous in certain applications. In this method, the gas used for pressurizing the container is cooled until it liquies at atmospheric pressure and is then poured into the container along with the substance to be dispensed. The container and its contents are then heated to return them to normal ambient temperature. With this method, the internal pressure builds up slowly as the temperature returns to normal, rather then suddenly, and is not suliicient to close the valve.` Prior known valves therefore require special precautions under these conditions to prevent them from gradually releasing the pressurizing gas without ever building up suicient pressure to close the Valve. l Y
` assises Patented Oct. 4, 1960 With the foregoing in mind, it is a major object of this invention to provide an improved dispenser valve which overcomes the above-mentioned disadvantages and yet is inexpensive to manufacture and quite Veffective in use.
It is also an important object of this invention to provide an improved dispenser valve which establishes a more eiective seal due to an improved seating structure.
Another object of this invention is to provide a dispenser valve of the poppet check valve type in which the poppet automatically locks itself in the nozzle b ore upon insertion therein and requires no further operations to complete the assembly.
A further object of this invention is to provide a dispenser valve of the type described above in which the poppet head is normally resiliently held Aclosed against its seat regardless of the magnitude of the internal pressure in the container, but can be opened by external pressure to allow lling.
Still another object of my invention is to provide a dispenser valve as described above, all of the parts of which can be inexpensively formed from common plastics.
Still a further object of my invention is to provide a dispenser valve of the type described above which permits lmanual control of the rate of discharge of contents from a container.
These and other objects and advantages of this invention will be apparent from the following detailed description of a preferred embodiment thereof, read together with the accompanying drawings, in which:
Figure 1 is an elevational View of a dispenser valve v embodymg my invention, shown in longitudinal section;
Figure 2 is a view similar to Figure l showing the valve in its dispensing condition;
Figure 3 is a perspective exploded view showing the principal parts of the valve separately;
Figure 4 is an elevational view in longitudinal section showing the valve during assembly; and
Figure 5 is a cross-sectional View ofl a part of the valve taken on line 5-5 in Figure 3.
Referring now to the drawings and particularly to Figure l thereof, the numeral 10 designates in general a dispensing valve embodying my invention. The valve has two principal parts, a nozzle 11 and poppet 12. The poppet 12 has a stem 12a received in the bore of the nozzle 11 and a head 23 which performs the actual valving function.
The nozzle 11 is mounted in a metal container 14 having a top 13 sealed thereto by crimped edges 15 and a gasket 16. The top 13 has a tubular bushing 17 formed therein which contains the inner portion 18 of nozzle 11. The nozzle inner portion 18 is sealed to the top 13 within the bushing 17 by means of an inner ange 19 which engages the inside of top 13 adjacent the bushing 17 and an outer flange 20 which engages the outside end of bushing 17. To communicate the inside of container 14 with the outside, the nozzle 11 has a longitudinal bore ZZ.
To perform its control function, the poppet head 23 has a flat, outwardly directed surface 24 with a circular edge 25 formed on its periphery to engage theinner end of nozzle 11 when the poppet 12 is moved outwardly in bore 22. The seating surface 26 is conically tapered at an angle 27 of approximately 75 with its longitudinal axis. VThe peripheral edge 25 engages the conical seating surface 26 preferably, but notnecessarily, about medially ing surface Z6.
The angle 27, which determines the taper of seating surface 26, need not be exactly 75; however, for best operation, it should be on this order. that if angle 27 is considerably less than 75, the valve seals well but is difficult to release. On the other hand, if'the angle is considerably greater. than 75,Nthe val've releases well but does not seal effectively as desired. Optimum performance is found-to be achieved when the angle is between 70 and 8 0".
The nozzle =11 is formed from polyethylene plastic which is especially treated and compounded with other ingredients to make it softer than usual,l For. example, where the usual polyethylene plastic has a Shore hardness value of about 100, the polyethylene used for my nozzle, has a Shore hardness value between 6ft-and 80,- preferably from 65 to 75.
The poppet 12 is formed frein high impact styrene plastic which is considerably harder and less flexible than polyethylene so that the poppet is hard and rigid in comparison to the nozzle and hasra substantially greater Shore hardness value. Other materials having similar characteristics and a like relationship may also be used for the nozzle and poppet; however, therabove-described plastics have proven quite satisfactory.
Because of the controlled softness of the nozzle material, the seating surface 26; is resiliently deformed when engaged by peripheral edge 25,r the depth of the1 deformation being proportional to they outward closing force on the poppet. When the poppet is rforced outwardly bythe pressurization of the container, the deformation is considerable, and when the poppet is forcedl outwardly only by the resilient force of its mounting, as willbe explained later, the deformation is less. But in any case, thefsharpness of edge and the softness of the nozzle material are so coordinated that the edge always `forms a seal with seating surface 26 whichy is quite effective for the prevailing conditions. i
Prongs 28 are` formed integrally withvthe outer end 29 of the poppet stem 12a and are disposed, on opposite sides thereof. The prongs 28 have proximal ends` 3,0 whichl are attached to the outermost portion 31 of stem 12a and extend inwardly and laterally in bore 22 tov their distal ends 30a.
T o engage the lower or distal ends 30a of prongs 28 and limit the inward movement of stern 12a, an outwardly facing annular shoulder 32 is; providedI inthe borerof the nozzle.
Prongs 28 are formed with a relatively narrow crosssection which is coordinated with. the characteristics of the material of the stem 12a, so that when an external pressure substantially greater than the internal pressure in the container -14 is applied to the nozzle 11, the stem 12a may be moved inwardly in bore 22 by resiliently bowing or flexing the prongs whereby. to open the valve. Since prongs 28 under these conditions are resiliently deformed, they immediately return to their normal shape when the excess of external pressure is released and close.V the valve.
Because of the ability ofprongs 28 to bow resiliently, my valve may be used in the previously mentioned application where the pressurization gas is introduced into the container in liquid form. Whenmy valve isfto be used for this application, the length of stem 12a and prongs 28 is coordinated so that when the prongs are in their normal shape and have their distal ends-30a resting on shoulder 32, the peripheral edge 25 is in engagement under slight pressure with seating surface 26. The bore 22 is, therefore, closed even when the internal fluid pressure in the container is not sutiicient to force the poppet outwardly.
To till the container, the material and liquiiied gas are supplied to the outer end of nozzle -11 under a sufcient pressure to bow the prongs 28 and permit inward movement of poppet 12. Edge 25 and seating surface. 26y
are thus separated and bore 22 is opened. fon filling. When the container is filled to the desired amount, the
It has been found pressure of the material and liquified gas supply is reduced, and the prongs 28 automatically return to their normal shape carrying the poppet 12 outwardly and the edge 25 back into sealing engagement with seating surface 26. When the contentsfof the container have returned to their normal ambient temperature, the gas provides internal pressurization Afor the container and as the internal pressure in the container increases, it drives the edge 25 into rseating surface-26 with increasing force, thus'adjusting the effectivenessy of the seal to t the conditions.
As previously pointed out, prior known valves do not close until sufficient internal pressure is applied to the poppet to drive it outwardly in the bore. Since, in the filling process just described,.the internal pressure rises slowly as the contents of the container are returned to normal temperature, these prior known valves are unsatisfactory because they permit leakage before the internal pressure becomes great enough to seal them. This disadvantage is overcome by my valve because it is sealed even before internal-pressure is applied to the poppet.
My valve, of course, can also be used with the lling method wherein thecontainers are pressurized by gas remaining in its gaseous state,v since the pressure under which the contents are introduced into the container bows the prongs 28 and opens the valve. e
The design of the prongs must take into consideration both the operating conditions to which the valve is to be subjected, and the material ofwhich the prongs are to be formed. Theprongs 28 must be rigid enough to force the edge 25 into sealing engagement with seating surface 26 without the assistance of internal pressure and still iiexible enough -to permit the valve stem 12 to be driven inwardly in bore 22 by a reasonable excess of external pressure yover internal pressure.
yWhen the container has been filled and isin actual use, the valve 10 is opened by manually bendingthe nozzle 11 laterally, as shown in Figure 2. Thisin turn tilts relatively rigid stem 12a, separating one side of the edge 25 from seating surface 26. The containers4 contents are then Vforced out through the bore by the internal pressure. A recessed neck 37 is formed in the periphery of nozzle 1.1 adjacent the outer flange 20 to localize they lateral bending of the nozzle whereby to produce a maximum displacement of the stem 12a for a given degreeof bending. Fingers 38 are provided on the outer extremity of outer nozzle portion 35 to aid in the dispensing of the contents.
As seen in Figure 2, another factor in the proper design of prongs 2S is that the prongs must be rigid enough to force the outer end 29 of stem 12a laterally when the shoulder 32-is tilted by laterally bending the nozzle.
In addition to their function of permitting inward movement of the poppet 12 for filling and tilting the valve stern for dispensing, the prongs 2S have still another important feature. Since the prongs are connected to the outermost portion 31 of stem 12a only at their proximal ends 30, they are resiliently deiiectable from their normal laterally projecting position into a retracted position in which they parallel the longitudinal axis of the stem and fit into recesses 39. (See Figures 3 and 4.) This permits snap-lock assembly of the poppet 12into the nozzle bore 22 by inserting stem 12a into the bore from the inner end until. the prongs pass the shoulder 32 and spring laterally into their normal positions. When the prongs 28. are designed to holdthe edge 25 in engagement with seating surface 26 by engagementl of their distal ends 31 with shoulder 32, the head V23 must be forced into the seating surface during assembly to allow theprongs to clear'the shoulder. This snap-lock assembly feature of. prongs 2S, of course, adds yet another consideration in achieving their proper design.
Taking into account all-the'factorswhich must be considered, I have found that for the usual application the proper design of prongs 23 is achieved-in a high impact styrene poppet by forming the prongs with a length to width ratio of approximately 8:1. l
While the forms of my invention herein shown and described are fully capable of achieving the objects and providing the advantages herein mentioned, it should be understood that the invention is not limited to the particular details disclosed, except as specified in the appended claims. Y
l. A Valve for dispensing pressurized fluids comprising: a flexible, normally straight tubular nozzle; a valve seat formed in an upstream end of said nozzle; an internal 'abutment in said nozzle disposed downstream of said seat and facing downstream; a poppet having a head formed with a protruding edge normally seated against said seat intermediate of the extremities thereof to close said nozzle and a relatively rigid stem received in the bore of said nozzle whereby flexure of said nozzle moves said edge olf said seat to open said nozzle; and a resilient prong formed on said stem at a point therein downstream from said head and engaged with said abutment in a exed condition whereby to resiliently urge said edge against said seat as aforesaid, said prong being sufficiently resilient to further flex and permit said head to move olf said seat upon flexure of said nozzle as aforesaid.
2. A valve for dispensing pressurized fluids comprising: a flexible, normally straight tubular nozzle; a conically tapered valve seat in an upstream end of said nozzle formed of relatively soft resilient material Vhaving a Shore hardness value between 60 and 80, said seat narrowing in an outward direction and forming an angle between 7() and 80 degrees with its longitudinal axis; an internal abutment in said nozzle facing downstream; a poppet having a head formed of relatively hard, rigid material with a Shore hardness value substantially greater than said seating surface and forming a circular edge around its periphery with a diameter greater than the minimum diameter of said seat and less than its maximum diameter which normally seats against and resiliently deforms said seat to close said nozzle, and a relatively rigid stern received in the bore of said nozzle whereby flexure thereof assembly'of said members, and said prong means being capable of Vbowing resiliently in such a manner as to permit inward movement of said poppet member in said bore to disengage said head and seating surface and open said bore when external pressure greater than said internal pressure is applied to said valve.
4. -ln a dispenser valve mounted on an internally pressurized container with an opening through a wall thereof and having a bored nozzle sealingly mounted in said opening which has a seating surface adjacent its inner end and is bendable laterally into misalignment with its longitudinal axis, and a poppet with a relatively rigid stem disposed in said bore and a head on its inner end for engaging said seating surface and sealing said bore when acted upon by said 4internal pressure and opening said bore when separated from said seating surface by tilting of said stem through lateral bending of said nozzle as aforesaid, means for holding said poppet in said bore with said head engaged with said seating surface comprising: an outwardly facing annular shoulder in said bore; and a plurality of prongs having proximal ends formed integral with the outermost-end of said stem and distal ends which extend inwardly and project laterally from the outer end of said stem and engage said shoulder to hold said head in engagement with said seating surface, said prongs having a sufficiently narrow cross-section to permit limited resilient bowing when an external pressure greater moves said edge off said seat to open said nozzle; and a plurality of prongsformed on said stem at a point therein downstream from said head and engaged with said abutment to hold said edge seated as aforesaid, said prongs exing resiliently when said stem is subjected to longi tudinal forces whereby said stem may be moved inwardly to disengage said edge and seating surface and open said bore, and said prong flexing resiliently when subjected to radial forces whereby to align longitudinally with said stem to permit snap-lock assembly of said valve by insertion of said stem through said bore until said prongs clear said abutment.
3. In a dispenser valve mounted on an internally-pressurized container with an opening through a wall thereof and having a boredl nozzle member sealingly mounted in said opening which has a seating surface adjacent its inner end and is bendable laterally into misalignment with its longitudinal axis, and a poppet member with a relatively rigid stem disposed in said bore and a head on its inner end for engaging said seating surface and sealing said bore when acted upon by said internal pressure and opening said bore when separated from said seating surface by tilting of said stem through lateral bending of said nozzle as aforesaid, means for holding said poppet member in said bore with said head engaged with said seating surface comprising: shoulder means on one of said members; prong means on the other of said members adapted to engage said shoulder means and maintain said poppet member in said nozzle member bore with said head engaging said seating surface and closing said bore, said prong means projecting laterally into said bore and being laterally deflectible into a retracted position generally parallel to the longitudinal axis of said bore to permit than said internal pressure is applied to said nozzle whereby said stem may be moved inwardly to disengage said head and seating surface and open said bore, and
said prongs being resiliently pivotable about their proximal ends into a retracted position in longitudinal alignment with said stem to permit snap-lock assembly of said valve by passage of said stem outwardly through said bore until said prongs clear said shoulder.
`5. In a dispenser valve mounted on an internally pressurized container with an opening through the wall thereof and having a bored nozzle sealingly mounted in said opening which nozzle is bendable laterally into misalignment with its longitudinal axis, a poppet with a relatively rigid stem disposed in said bore whereby said poppet is tilted with respect to said seating surface when said nozzle is bent laterally as aforesaid, and means for maintaining said poppet in said bore, means for sealing said bore comprising: a frustum-shaped seating surface adjacent the inner end of said nozzle which forms an angle between 70 and 80 degrees with its longitudinal axis, said seating surface being formed of polyethylene plastic specially softened to a Shore hardness value between 65 and 75; a head on the inner end of said poppet having a diameter greater than said bore, said head being formed of high impact styrene plastic and therefore being relatively hard and rigid and having a Shore hardness value substantially greater than that of said seating surface; and a circular edge formed around the periphery of said head which is the first portion of said head to engage said seating surface when said poppet is forced outwardly in said bore and resiliently deforms said seating surface thereby sealing said bore, said edge being disengageable from said seating surface to open said bore when said poppet is tilted as aforesaid.
6. In an internally pressurized container for containing and dispensing material having an opening through a wall thereof, a dispenser valve disposed in said opening which comprises: an elongated nozzle sealingly mounted in said opening and extending therethrough, said nozzle being formed of polyethylene specially softened to have a Shore hardness value between 60 and 80, and being capable of resilient lateral bending into misalignment with its longitudinal axis; a longitudinal bore through said nozzle having an outwardly facing shoulder therein; a tapered seating surface formed integral with said nozzle adjacent the inner end thereof, said seating surface narrowing so as to intersect its longitudinal axis at an angle between 70 and degrees; a poppet formed of relatively rigid high impact 7 styrene having a Shore hardness value considerably greater thanthe Shore value of saidnozzle, --and having vastern disposed Vin "said bore which `-is tilted therein 4when'said nozzle is laterally bent kas Aaforesaid and a head onthe inner end of said stem whichris Alargerthasn said bore, said poppet being adapted to be "forced 'outwardly by Vthe pressure of said container; 'anedgesurrounding the peripht in the periphery of said nozzlel adjacent the outside of said ery of said head and ,having the same contour as the t periphery of a cross-section of Ysaid seatingsurface'taken perpendicular to its longitudinal axis 'and ,intermediate its inner vand outer extremities, said edge being so mounted on said head that it alone 'engages said'seating surface along said crosslsection when said poppet Vis forced outwardly as aforesaid and being'suiiciently 'sharpjtofref siliently deform said seating surface 'during said-engagement whereby to seal saidbore; a pronghaving a proximal end formedintegral'with theoutermost endrof said stem and extending inwardlyand projecting laterally from `the outer end of ksaid stem to a distal end which-engages said shoulder to prevent inward movement of said stem in said bore, Ysaid prong having a sutllciently narrow crosssection 'to permit limited resihent bowing when an external pressure greater than said internal pressure lis applied to said nozzle whereby said poppet may be moved inwardly to open saidbore, and said-prong being resiliently pivotable about its proximal end into a retracted positionin longitudinal alignment with said stem to permit snap-lock assembly of said valve by passage of said stem outwardly through said bore Vuntil said prong clears said shoulder. l
7. In an internally pressurized container for containing and dispensing material which has an opening through a wall thereof, a dispenser valve disposed n said opening which comprises: an elongated nozzle sealingly mounted in said opening and extending therethrough, said nozzle being formed of polyethylene specially softened to have a Shore hardness value of between 65 and 75 and being capable of resilient lateral bending into misalignment with its longitudinal axis; a longitudinal bore through said nozzle having an outwardly facing shoulder therein; a frustum-shaped seating surface formed integral with said nozzle adjacentthe inner end thereof, said seating surface narrowing outwardly so as to intersect its longitudinal opening to :localize saidresilient lateral bending; and a plurality of 'lingers formedintegrally with the outermost portion of said nozzle. l
8. A valve 'for idispensing pressurized Afluids 'comprising: a'ilexiblenozzle, which is normally in `a nonexed condition; :avalve seat Vformed in an'upstream end of said nozzle; an internal abutment in-said nozzle disposed downstream of said seat and facing downstream; apoppet having a head normally seated against said seat to closed said nozzle, and a relatively rigid stem received in the'bore of said lnozzle'whereby llexure of said nozzle moves said head olf said -seat to open said nozzle; and
i resilient means :affixed to saidrpoppet and normally engaging said abutment in flexed condition whereby to normally urge said headagainst said seat, said resilient means bein-g sufficiently resilient to permit separation of at least a portion of said head from said seat upon ilexure of said nozzle as aforesaid.
9. In a dispenser valve mounted in an internally pressurized container and'having a bored nozzle member of flexible material ywhich has a seat therein -and is bendable laterally into misalignm-ent with its longitudinal axis, and -a poppet member with a stem which is disposed in said bore and having a head which is engageable with said seat -to seal said bore and is separable from said seat by laterally -bending said nozzle as aforesaid, improved means for normally holding said poppet member in said bore -With said head engaging said seat comprising: shoulder means on one of said members; resilient prong means on .the other of said members, `said prong means normally projecting laterally from said other member into said bore and being resiliently deilectable into substantial alignment with the longitudinal axis of said nozzle to permit the positioning of said prong means beyond said shoulder means in the assembly of said stem in said bore, and said prong means `and shoulder means being so locatedpon said members relative to lone another that when said stem is forcibly inserted into said bore to a position where said head engages :and substantially deforms said seat, said prong means clears said shoulderfmeans and return -to their normal position and axis at an angle of approximately 75 degrees; a poppet formed of 'relatively rigid high impactV styrene lhaving a Shore hardness value considerably greater than the Shore value of said nozzle, and having a stem disposed in said bore which is'tilted therein when said'nozzley is laterally bent as aforesaid anda head on the inner 'end of said stem which is larger than said bore, said Apoppet being adapted to be forced outwardly by the pressure of said container; a circular edge on the periphery of said head having a diameter greater than the minimumv diameter of said seating'surface'and less than its maximum diameter, said edge being so Ymounted that it alone engages said seating surface when .said poppet is forced Voutwardly as aforesaid and being sulllciently sharp to resiliently deform said seating surface duringsaid engagementwhereby to seal said bore; a plurality of prongs having proximal ends formed integral-with the outer end of--said-ste`m and distal ends which extend inwardly and projectv'laterally from the outer endy of said stem and engage said shoulder to holdsaid edge in engagement withsaid seating surface,l
said prongs having asuiiciently narrow cross-section to permit limited resilient-bowing when an external-pressure greater than said internal pressure is applied to said nozzle whereby said poppet may be moved inwardly to disengage said edge and seating surface and open said bore, and said prongs being vresiliently pivotable about their proximal ends into a retracted position in longitudinal align# ment with said stem to permit snap-lock assemblyof said valve by passage -of saidstem outwardly through said bore until said prongs clear said shoulder; recesses in the outer end of said stem adapted 'to receive said prongs when in said retracted position;a-'reeessed-neckportion formed when said inserting force is released said prongmeans abut said shoulder means in a resiliently flexed condition whereby to resiliently urge said head against said seat.
l0. In `a dispenser valve mounted on an internallypressurized container with an opening through a wall thereof and having a borednozzle member sealingly mounted in said opening, which nozzle has a seating surface adjacent its inner end and is bendable laterally into misalignment with its longitudinal axis, anda poppet member with a relatively rigid stem disposed in said bore and with a head on its inner end for engaging said seating surface and sealing said bore when acted upon by said internal pressure and openingsaid `bore when separated from said seating surface by tilting of said stem through lateral bending of :said nozzle as aforesaid, improved means for holding said poppet member in said bore'with said head engaged with said seating surface comprising: yan abutment formed on one of said members and disposed outwardly of said seating surface when said stem isdisposed in said bore; a pluralityof resilient prongs on the other of said members which normally project laterally Vinto said bore but are resiliently deflected into substantial alignment with said longitudinal axis when said stem is inserted into the inner end of 'said bore for assembly of said valve and snap laterally intotsaid bo-re behind said abutment when said `abutment has .been forced past said prongs during said assembly thereby locking said poppet in said nozzle.
ll. The val-Ve `of lclaim S wherein said resilient means comprises a plurality of elongated members, each member having its outer end aixed tothe outer'end of said poppet and t-s inner end normally in contact with said `abutment, said mem-bers being normally exed when said nozzle is nonflxed.
12. The valve of Ielaim 8 wherein said head of said puppet is formed with an edge which sealingly engages said valve seat when said nozzle is Ain normally nonexed eondition.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS Collins Ian. 20, 1959