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Publication numberUS3065887 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateNov 27, 1962
Filing dateApr 17, 1959
Priority dateApr 17, 1959
Publication numberUS 3065887 A, US 3065887A, US-A-3065887, US3065887 A, US3065887A
InventorsMichael Matejek John
Original AssigneeAmerican Can Co
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Adjustable measuring chamber for a dispenser
US 3065887 A
Abstract  available in
Previous page
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Nov. 27, 1962 ADJUSTABLE MEASURING CHAMBER FOR A DISPENSER Filed April 17, 1959 42 7) 75 4 94 O B T 40 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 dZ k J0 1\ g 54 s; rs w a if 5 f s Q Q INVENTOR. d JOHN MIC/M61 MATEJEK Nov. 27, 1962 J. M. MATEJEK ADJUSTABLE MEASURING CHAMBER FOR A DISPENSER Filed April 17, 1959 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 United States Patent Ofiiice 3,055,887 Patented Nov. 27, i962 3,065,887 ADJUSTABLE MEASURING CHAMBER FOR A DISPENSER John Michael Matejelr, Piaf-infield, N.J., assignor to American Can Company, New York, N.Y., a corporation of New Jersey Filed Apr. 17, 1959, Ser. No. 807,157 6 Claims. (Cl. 222-435) The present invention relates to liquid filling machines and has particular reference to an improved measuring valve construction which permits rapid adjustment of the quantity being filled without requiring removal of the protective devices covering the internal portions of the valve.

The present invention comprises an improvement over the mechanism disclosed and claimed in United States Patent 2,795,361 issued on June 11, 1957 to William 'Pechy and entitled Measuring Chamber Volume Control for Filling Machine.

An object of the present invention is the provision of a measuring chamber which is capable of continuous rapid adjustment over a wide range of sizes within the capabilities of the machine.

Another object is the provision of a measuring chamber wherein such continuous adjustment may be made from the outside of the machine without requiring removal of the protective covering devices which shield the inner parts from contamination.

Still another object is the provision of a liquid measuring chamber embodying a displacement plunger which is firmly locked in place against the surging action of the liquid during the measuring operation to prevent variations in fill, but which is easily unlocked to permit adjustment of the measured charge.

Numerous other objects and advantages of the invention will be apparent as it is better understood from the following description, which, taken in connection with the accompanying drawings, discloses a preferred embodiment thereof.

Referring to the drawings:

FIGURE 1 is a sectional view through a portion of a liquid filling machine embodying the instant invention, with parts broken away;

FIGS. 2 and 3 are enlarged sectional views taken substantially along the lines 22 and 3-3 in FIG. 1;

FIG. 4 is an enlarged perspective view of the displacement plunger locking member which comprises an important element of the instant invention, the plane of the vertical section being taken diametrically and through an opposed pair of locking fingers formed in the locking member;

FIG. 5 is an enlarged sectional View taken substantially along the line 5-5 in FIG. 1;

FIG. 6 is a sectional detail taken substantially along the line 66 in FIG. 7, the section being taken through one of the locking threads of the locking member when in non-locked position.

FIG. 7 is an enlarged sectional view of the upper portion of the measuring valve shown in FIG. 1;

FIG. 8 is a side elevation, as viewed from the left in FIG. 1, of the lower portion of the protective cover member which shields the inner parts of the measuring valve from contamination; and

FIGS. 9 and 10 are fragmentary details showing certain parts of the measuring valve disclosed in FIG. 7 in successive positions as the protective cover member is moved to locking position.

As a preferred or exemplary embodiment of the instant invention, the drawings illustrate a single measuring chamber V mounted on a conventional multi-valve rotary liquid filling machine. In such a machine, a plurality of such chambers are mounted at spaced intervals around its periphery for movement around a circular path of travel while filling liquid products such as milk into rectangular fibre containers A of the type disclosed in United States Patent 2,085,979 issued July 6, 1937 to John M. Hothersall and entitled Container. The container A is provided with a flat top B (see FIG. 1), in one corner of which is formed an opening C which is closed, after the container is filled with the product, by means of a friction plug D hingedly attached to the flat top B of the container.

As shown in FIG. 1, the container A is received in a pocket 16 of a turret 18 which is keyed to a rotating shaft 20 journalled in bearings (not shown) mounted in the main frame of the machine. The shaft 26 has mounted at its upper end a large circular tank or reservoir 22 which contains the liquid product to be filled into the containers A. The upper end of the reservoir 22 is formed with an inwardly inclined conical wall 23 which terminates in an inwardly directed horizontal flange 24, and the reservoir is covered by a two-piece cover assembly which includes an outer annular ring member 25 formed with an inner upwardly extending flange 26 and an outer downwardly depending flange 27 which rests upon the conical reservoir wall 23 in selfcentering relationship. The central portion of the reservoir 22 is covered by a removable cover member 28 which rests upon the inner flange 26 of the ring 25. At spaced intervals around the periphery of this reservoir 22, corresponding in number to and in vertical alignment with the turret pockets 16, are mounted a plurality of the measuring chambers V, one of which is illustrated in detail in the drawings.

Each measuring chamber V comprises a tubular sleeve or housing 29 which at its lower end engages within a downwardly depending flange 30 which defines a circular opening formed in the bottom of the reservoir. The upper end of the housing 29 extends upwardly through a circular opening 31 defined by an annular, upwardly extending flange 32 formed in the ring member 25.

A lug 33 is welded to the upper portion of the housing 29. This lug is provided with a horizontal slot 34 which snugly receives the horizontally inturned flange 24 of the reservoir 22 to prevent upward movement of the housing 29 and to assist in holding it in position.

The housing 29 defines a measuring chamber 35 and at its lower end is provided with a plurality of inlet ports 36 which permit the liquid in the reservoir 22 to flow into the measuring chamber 35 and rise to the level of the liquid in the reservoir.

The lower end of the measuring chamber 35 is closed by means of a nozzle unit 38 which may be of the type illustrated in United States Patent 2,755,980 entitled Machine for Filling Liquids Into Containers, which patent issued on July 24, 1956 to Samuel S. Jacobs and William Pechy. The lower end of the nozzle 38 projects into the container A through the container opening C, and is provided with a discharge slot it) which, when open, permits the liquid in the measuring chamber 35 to flow into the container A. However, during the measuring cycle of the measuring chamber V, during which time a measured quantity of liquid is being isolated in the measuring chamber 35, the discharge slot at} is kept closed, as illustrated in the said Patent 2,755,980.

When the liquid in the measuring chamber 35 has reached the level of the liquid in the reservoir 22,the inlet ports 36 are closed by the upward movement of a funnel 42 which forms a part of the nozzle 38. This funnel 42 is raised by a cam-actuated lifting rod 46, as disclosed in the aforementioned United States Patent 2,755,980, and at its upper end is provided with a sealing gasket 48 which moves upwardly past the inlet ports 36 and seals them off, thus isolating the liquid in the measuring chamber from the liquid in the reservoir 22. At the same time the upward movement of the funnel 42 also raises bodily the liquid in the measuring chamber 35. This causes a portion of the isolated liquid to be raised above the level of a plurality of overflow ports which are formed in the housing 29 at a level some what above the level of the liquid in the reservoir 22. As a result, this excess liquid flows through the overflow ports 50 and returns to the reservoir 22.

The final determination of the volume of liquid isolated in the measuring chamber 35 is controlled by an adjustably mounted displacement plunger 52, the lower end of which is located within the housing 29 and is of somewhat less diameter than the housing. A plurality of spaced, inwardly extending, small projections 53 keeps the plunger 52 centered within the housing 29. As will readily be seen, when the displacement plunger 52 is in its uppermost position, as disclosed in the drawings, the measured charge of liquid will be at a maximum, while the measured charge will be at a minimum when the displacement plunger is at its lowermost position, which is indicated in dot and dash lines in FIG. 1. To permit rapid continuous adjustment of this charge, the displacement plunger 52 is provided at its upper end with an indented continuous thread 54 which is engaged by a locking member 56, preferably formed of nylon or some other suitable elastic material, which locks the plunger immovably in its selected position.

As seen in the drawings, the locking member 56 comprises a tubular bottom portion 58 of reduced diameter which seats within the circular flange 32 of the reservoir ring 25. The inner surface of this portion 58 snugly engages around the housing 29 and thus cooperates with the lug 33 in holding the housing 29 in place. The median portion 60 of the locking member 56 is of greater internal diameter than the bottom portion 58 and is formed with a pair of opposed, inwardly extending locking lugs 62 which snap into a pair of correspondingly opposed slots 64, formed in the upper end of the housing 29 to lock the ring member 56 against upward movement (see FIGS. 2 and 7).

The locking member 56 is further formed with a group of four upwardly extending integral spring fingers 66 each of which intermediate its length is provided with an inwardly projecting, inclined locking thread segment 68. These locking thread segments 68 have substantially the same inclination as the plunger thread 54 and in effect, form spaced segments of What would otherwise be a continuous thread inclined to engage within the locking thread 54.

The displacement plunger 52 and the locking member 56 are protected against outside contamination by an elongated hollow protective cap 70 which fits over these members and extends below the upper end of the ring flange 32 when in normal seated position. This protective cap 70 is preferably formed of a semitransparent material such as nylon and is provided with a longitudinally extending radial projection 72 (see FIGS. 1, 3 and 7), the inside of which forms a longitudinal groove 74 which receives a radially projecting lug 76 formed at the upper end of the displacement plunger 52.

The lower end of the cap 70 is enlarged in diameter to fit around the locking member 56 and is provided with an inwardly projecting horizontal annular bead 78. The spring fingers 66 of the locking member 56 are provided intermediate their lengths with outwardly projecting, horizontally aligned bead segments 80 which are of greater external diameter than the internal diameter of the cap head 78. The fingers 66, above the bead segments 80, are formed of portions 82 which are of lesser diameter than the inner diameter of the cap head 78, and below the bead segments 80 are formed of portions 84 which are of greater diameter than the inner diameter of the cap bead 78. Thus, when the cap 70 is first lowered into position over the plunger 52 and locking member 56 its bead 78 rests loosely upon the bead segments and the spring fingers 66 are in their normal, outward, non-locking position with their thread segments 68 fitting loosely within the plunger thread 54 (see FIG. 7).

In this position, rotation of the protective cap 70 effects rotation of the plunger 52 by reason of the connection between these two members resulting from the position of the projecting plunger lug 76 within the cap groove 74. This rotation of the plunger 52 in turn results in vertical movement of the plunger by reason of the loose but operative engagement between the nonrotating thread segments 68 and the rotating plunger thread 54. As a result, the desired adjustment of the capacity of the measuring chamber 35 is simply and quickly obtained. If desired, suitable registration marks on other indicia may be provided on the plunger 52 and the semi-transparent protective cap 78 to indicate the capacity of the measuring chamber 35 at the various heights of the plunger 52.

When the desired capacity of the measuring chamber has been thus obtained, the protective cap 70 is pressed downwardly to snap the cap bead 78 over the finger bead segments 80 and into engagement with the finger portions 84. Since the portions 84 are greater in diameter than the cap head 78, the fingers 66 are forced inwardly and their thread segments 68 are pressed into firm locking engagement with the plunger thread 54 as soon as the cap bead 78 passes over the bead segments 81}, as seen in FIG. 9. The cap is preferably pressed to the fully seated position of FIG. 10, at which point the upper ends of the spring fingers 66 engage it and prevent further downward movement.

In order to lock the various parts of the valve V against inadvertent rotation which would affect the volume of the measuring chamber 35, a radially projecting locking pin 86 is secured to the housing 29. This pin seats in a narrow vertical slot 88 formed in the flange 3 2, and in a vertical slot 90 formed at the bottom of the locking member 56. In addition, the complete bottom edge portion of the cap 70 is provided at closely spaced intervals with vertical slots 92 which are dimensioned to receive the locking pin 86. As a result, when the cap 70 is pressed downwardly so that the cap head 78 snaps over the bead segments 80, the pin 86 enters that slot 92 which happens to be in or nearest to vertical alignment with it (see FIGS. 8 and 9), thus positively preventing accidental rotation of the cap 79.

The measuring cycle of the filling valve has heretofore been described in detail. As explained, this measuring cycle results in isolation of a measured charge of liquid in the measuring chamber 35. Upon completion of this cycle, the slot 40 at the bottom of the nozzle 38 is opened by means of an actuating lever 94, and the isolated measured charge of liquid is thus caused to flow into and fill the container A. After the container A has been filled, the slot 40 is closed and the funnel 4-2 is moved downwardly to open the ports 36 and thus initiate another measuring cycle. Details of the construction and operation of these parts of the filling nozzle 38 are clearly disclosed in the aforementioned United States Patent 2,755,980, and are eliminated here for the sake of brevity.

It will be apparent from the above description that the present invention provides a measuring valve construction in which not only major changes in the volume of the measuring chamber 35 may be easily eflected, without requiring exposure of the internal parts of the valve, but wherein minor adjustments may be easily made in similar manner. Further, uniformity of fill is assured by the fact that the displacement plunger is firmly locked in place against the surging action of the liquid during the measuring cycle. If the displacement plunger were not thus locked in place, it would have a tendency to be displaced upwardly to a greater or lesser extent each time the milk is raised upwardly by the funnel 42, thus altering the volume of the measuring chamber 35 and resulting in inaccuracies of fill.

The present measuring chamber construction is particularly useful in dairies where the sanitary requirements are very rigid, for the reason that it composed of comparatively few parts which are easily removed and disassembled for cleaning. Disassembly may be easily effected by lifting the protective cap 70 and completely removing it from the valve V. Next, the lugs 62 are disengaged from the slots 64, thus disengaging the locking member 56 from the housing 29 and permitting the locking member 56 and plunger 52 to be lifted out of the housing 29, after which the housing 29 is tilted slightly to disengage the housing lug 33 from the reservoir flange 24 to thereby release the housing 29 so that it may be lifted out of the reservoir 22.

It is thought that the invention and many of its attend-ant advantages will be understood from the foregoing description, and it will be apparent that various changes may be made in the form, construction and arrangement of the parts without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention or sacrificing all of its material advantages, the form hereinbefore described being merely a preferred embodiment thereof.

1 claim:

1. In a liquid measuring dispenser, the combination comprising a tubular measuring housing having an open upper end, said housing defining a measuring chamber for enclosing a measured charge of liquid, an adjustable displacement plunger having its lower portion positioned in said chamber for determining the volume of said measured charge of liquid, the upper portion of said plunger being provided with a continuous thread and projecting upwardly from said housing, an elastic locking member fixedly mounted around the upper end of said housing, said locking member being provided with a plurality of radially movable thread segments biased to a loosely engageable position within said plunger thread, a protective cap for covering said threaded plunger portion and the upper end of said housing, means for slidingly keying said plunger to said protective cap whereby rotation of said cap effects rotation of said plunger and produces longitudinal movement of said plunger by reason of the relative movement between said plunger thread and said locking member thread segments, and a camming surface on said cap for forcing said thread segments from said biased position to tight locking engagement against said plunger thread to prevent longitudinal and rotary movement of said plunger from a selected position.

2. The combination of claim 1 wherein said camming surface on said protective cap comprises an inwardly projecting bead, and wherein said thread segments are mounted on movable spring fingers, portions of said spring fingers being provided with surfaces which normally extend outwardly beyond said cap bead whereby when said cap is moved downwardly relative to said spring fingers, said cap head will engage against said outwardly extending portions of said spring fingers to cam said spring fingers inwardly to thus move their thread segments into clamping engagement with said plunger to lock the latter against vertical and rotary movement.

3. The combination of claim 2 wherein said spring fingers are provided with outwardly projecting beads disposed at the top of their outwardly extending portions to lock said cap against upward movement.

4. The combination of claim 3 wherein means are provided for preventing rotary movement of said cap when in locking position.

5. In a measuring dispenser, the combination comprising a housing defining a measuring chamber for enclosing a measured charge of liquid, a displacement plunger having a continuous indented thread formed therein, said plunger being disposed in said housing for determining the volume of said chamber, a locking member fixedly mounted around the upper end of said measuring housing, circumferentially spaced elastic thread segments in said locking member which engage said thread on the plunger whereby rotation of said displacement plunger relative to said locking member results in longitudinal movement of said displacement plunger to vary the capacity of said chamber, and an actuating member keyed to and axially slidable along said plunger for elfecting rotational and longitudinal movement of said plunger to a selected position in said chamber, said actuating member having a portion engageable against said elastic thread segments for deforming said segments into tight locking engagement with said thread to lock said plunger in said selected position by axially sliding said actuating member on said plunger to engage said portion against said segments.

6. The combination of claim 5 wherein said elastic thread segments of said locking member are located on individual elastic fingers which are circumferentially spaced around said displacement plunger.

References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 292,342 McMillan Jan. 22, 1884 598,035 Towle -Jan. 25, 1898 709,638 Johnson Sept. 23, 1902 988,422 Wilson Apr. 4, 1911 1,621,308 Bersted Mar. 15, 1927 2,795,361 Pechy June 11, 1957

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US292342 *Aug 20, 1883Jan 22, 1884 Combined vise and lathe
US598035 *Feb 2, 1897Jan 25, 1898 Automatic liquid measuring and filling apparatus
US709638 *Dec 3, 1901Sep 23, 1902Climax Nut Lock & Mfg CompanyGasolene-regulator.
US988422 *Jun 24, 1910Apr 4, 1911Clarence A WilsonGrease-gun.
US1621308 *Sep 3, 1921Mar 15, 1927Bersted Martin CGrease gun
US2795361 *Dec 24, 1954Jun 11, 1957American Can CoMeasuring chamber volume control for filling machine
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3357606 *Jun 18, 1965Dec 12, 1967Kahlenberg James FFluid flow adjustment device for manifolded dispensing nozzles
US3804135 *Sep 27, 1971Apr 16, 1974Horix Mfg CoAdjustable volume pressure-fill container filling machine
US5125440 *Aug 15, 1990Jun 30, 1992Alfill Getranketechnik GmbhApparatus for filling bottles and the like
U.S. Classification222/435, 222/448, 222/168.5, 141/146, 222/440
International ClassificationB65B3/30, B65B3/00
Cooperative ClassificationB65B3/305
European ClassificationB65B3/30B