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Publication numberUS3073468 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJan 15, 1963
Filing dateSep 15, 1961
Priority dateSep 15, 1961
Publication numberUS 3073468 A, US 3073468A, US-A-3073468, US3073468 A, US3073468A
InventorsArneson Rolf H
Original AssigneeRap Inc
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Tamper-proof closure cap
US 3073468 A
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Jan.- 15, 1963 R. H. ARNESON TAMPER-PROOF CLOSURE CAP Filed Sept. 15, 1961 INVENTOR.

EOLF- H. AENEsoN United States Patent Ofiice 3,073,468 TAMPER-PROOF CLOSURE CAP Rolf H. Arneson, Morris, Minn, assignor to RAF, Inc., Morris, Minn., a corporation of Minnesota Filed Sept. 15, 1961, Ser. No. 138,452 8 Claims. (Cl. 215-7) This invention relates to a closure cap for bottles or the like, containing foodstuffs, or other perishable or contaminable substances. As a convenience to the consumer, many such containers, notably ketchup bottles, are provided with screw caps, so that they may be readily opened without the need for special tools. These containers necessarily include a sealing gasket of some sort, and in the case of screw tops, the effectiveness of the seal is dependent upon the degree of turning of the screw connection. In general, this is satisfactorily accomplished at the factory, but the beneficial features of the screw connection may emerge in an unfavorable light, since the seal may be easily disturbed by tampering, whether due to malice, vandalism or carelessness, with resulting spoilage or contamination.

It is therefore an object of the invention to provide a closure cap which will automatically provide an indication of prior tampering. More particularly, it is an object to provide a tampering indicator having special adaptation to screw type closure caps.

These and other objects which will be apparent, are attained by the present invention, which may be briefly described as comprising a cap with inner and outer components, the former carrying the screw thread of the cap, and the outer component being rotatable with respect to the inner component, and communicating rotation thereto through a slip connection which keys the parts only after a degree of rotation which permanently exposes a legend signalling the occurrence of the initial opening movement.

For a more detailed description of the invention, reference is made to the following specification, as illustrated in the drawing, in which:

FIGURE 1 is a perspective view of the upper portion of a bottle, in fragment, with the screw cap in normal, sealing relation, and that indicia showing, which indicates normal conditions.

FIGURE 2 is an exploded view, in perspective, of the three parts of the cap.

FIGURE 3 is a top plan view of the device of FIG- URE 1, enlarged in scale.

FIGURE 4 is a sectional view, taken on the line 4-4 of FIGURE 3.

FIGURE 5 is a view similar to FIGURE 3, showing the outer component of the cap rotated counter clockwise to an extent sufiicient to expose the indicia of tampering.

FIGURE 6 is a view similar to FIGURE 1, with the cap rotated as in FIGURE 5, and partially broken away to show the keying elements.

Referring to the drawing by reference characters, there is shown a glass bottle 10', with a neck 12 having an outer, helical, screw thread 14. The closure unit comprises an inner cap 16, having a fiat top 18, and a helical thread 20 in its side wall, mating with the thread 14 of the bottle neck. A gasket 22 of rubbery material, or suitable plastic, is nested against the inner face of top 18 3,033,468 Patented Jan. I5, 1%63 of the inner component, and these two elements accomplish the main sealing function.

The outer component 24 is cylindrical, with a flat top 26, and is of a size to just surround the inner component 16. At its bottom edge, the outer component 24 has an inwardly and upwardly turned edge, or head, 28, which engages around the lower edge of inner component 16, whereby the two components are secured together against relative, axial movement, but are free for relative rotational movement.

The operation of the tell-tale device, and the communication of movement of rotation from the outer component to the inner component are accomplished through an arrangement of bent tabs in the flat faces of the components, operating in the manner of a pawl and ratchet mechanism. Thus, face 18 of the inner component has a series of three upwardly struck tabs 30, 32, 34, on a common circle, the first two of which open in the same direction, and the third in the opposite direction. For coaction with the three said tabs, the flat face 26 of the outer component has a pair of inwardly struck tabs 36, 38, arranged to contact the upwardly extending tabs 30, 32, 34.

The indicia, or tell-tale device on the closure comprises a pair of colored sectors 40, 42, selectively exposable through a circular window 44, in the fiat face 26 of the outer component. Sector 4% is colored green, or other color indicating normality, and is exposed when tabs 36, 38, are between tabs 3t 32. This is the relative position of the tabs at the time the components are assembled by the turning of bead 2.8. In this position, tab 36 engages tab 3%, and rotation of the outer component is positively communicated to the inner component to negotiate the screw thread connection, and put sealing pressure on the gasket. Thereafter, upon any attempt to unscrew the cap, there is a degree of lost motion in the rotation until both tabs 38 and 36 have ridden over the tab 32. This puts window 44 over the sector 42, which is colored red, to indicate the initial opening movement. Thereafter, there is a connection between tabs 38 and 34 for opening, and a connection between tabs 36 and 32 for closing, but the window is permanently positioned over the red sector 42. Therefore, if any tampering has occurred prior to the purchase, the prospective purchaser is put on immediate and prominent notice. This makes the goods suspect, whether or not any actual unsealing took place, and irrespective of the duration of the unsealed condition.

Obviously, suitable legends may be employed in lieu of the colored indicators, and the particular arrangement of the parts may be varied within reasonable limits. Generally speaking, various modifications will be apparent, in the light of this disclosure, and the invention should not, therefore, be deemed as limited, except insofar as shall appear from the spirit and scope of the appended claims.

I claim:

1. A closure cap for containers comprising an inner cup having a wall with a screw thread, and a closed end having a series of three outwardly struck tabs, located on a common circle, two adjacent tabs of said series arranged at a positive, acute angle to said end, and the other of said tabs arranged at a negative acute angle to said end, said end having a pair of contiguous sectors bearing distinguishing colors, a sealing gasket nested in said inner cup, and an outer, cylindrical cup, closely encompassing said inner cup, and having a beaded, lower edge enclosing the lower edge of said inner cup, and having a closed end with a window, and a pair of downwardly struck, diverging tongues, located on a common circle, and adapted for selective location in a first position, between said two of said tabs, and a second position, between one of said two of said tabs and other of said tabs, said window positioned to overlie the said sectors, respectively, in the said respective positions of said tongues.

2. A closure cap for containers comprising an inner cup having an internal screw thread, and a closed end having a series of three outwardly struck tabs, located on a common circle, two adjacent tabs of said series being arranged at acute angles of similar sign, and the other of said tabs arranged at an acute angle opposite in sign to that of said two tabs, a sealing gasket in said inner cup, and an outer, cylindrical cup, closely encompassing said inner cup, having a folded lower edge enfolding the lower edge of said inner cup, and having a closed end with a viewing aperture, said latter end having a pair of downwardly struck, diverging tongues, located on a common circle, and adapted for selective location in a first position, between said two of said tabs, and a second position between one of said two of said tabs and the other of said tabs, and distinguishing indicia on the closed end of said inner cup, underlying said apertture in the respective said positions of said pair of tongues.

3. A closure cap for containers comprising an inner cup having an internal screw thread, and a closed end having a series of three, outwardly struck tabs, located on a common circle, two adjacent tabs of said series arranged at an angle of similar sign with said end, and pointing in the direction of unscrewing said cap, and the other of said tabs arranged at an angle with said end, of opposite sign from that of said two tabs, and pointing in the direction of screwing motion of said cup during attachment, a sealing gasket in said inner cup, and an outer, cylindrical cup, closely encompassing said inner cup, having a folded, lower edge, enfolding the lower edge of said inner cup, and having a closed end with a viewing aperture, said latter end having a pair of downwardly struck, diverging tongues, located on a common circle, the tongue adjacent the outer of said two tabs arranged at an angle supplementary thereto, and the other tongue arranged at an angle supplementary to said other of said tabs, said pair of tongues adapted for selective location, in a first position, between said two of said tabs, and a second posi- I tion, between the inner of said two of said tabs and the said other of said tabs, and distinguishing indicia on the closed end of said inner cup, underlying said aperture in the respective, said positions of said pair of tongues.

4. A closure cap for containers comprising an inner cup having an internal screw thread, and a closed end having a series of three, outwardly struck tabs, two adjacent tabs of said series arranged at an angle of similar sign with said end, and pointing in the direction of unscrewing of said cap, and the other of said tabs arranged at an angle with said end, of opposite sign from that of said two tabs, and pointing in the direction of screwing motion of said cup during attachment, a sealing gasket in said inner cup, and an outer, cylindrical cup, closely encompassing said inner cup, having a folded, lower edge, enfolding the lower edge of said inner cup, and having a closed end with a viewing aperture, said latter end having a pair of downwardly struck, diverging tongues, the tongue adjacent the outer of said two tabs arranged at an angle supplementary thereto, and the other tongue arranged at an angle supplementary to the said other of said tabs, said pair of tongues adapted for selective location, in a first position, between said two of said tabs, and a second position, between the inner of said two of said tabs and the said other of said tabs, and distinguish- 4- ing indicia on the closed end of said inner cup, underlying said aperture in the respective, said positions of said pair of tongues.

5. A closure cap for containers comprising an inner cup having an internal screw thread, and a closed end having a series of three, outwardly struck tabs, two adjacent tabs of said series arranged at an angle of similar sign with said end, and pointing in the direction of unscrewing of said cap, and the other of said tabs arranged at an angle with said end, of opposite sign from that of said two tabs, and pointing in the direction of screwing motion of said cup during attachment, a sealing gasket in said inner cup, and an outer, cylindrical cup, closely encompassing said inner cup, having a folded, lower edge, enfolding the lower end of said inner cup, and having a closed end, said latter end having a pair of downwardly struck, diverging tongues, the tongue adjacent the outer of said two tabs arranged at an angle supplementary thereto, and the other tongue arranged at an angle supplementary to the said other of said tabs, said pair of tongues adapted for selective location, in a first position, between said two of said tabs, and a second position, between the inner of said two of said tabs and the said other of said tabs, and means on the cap for rendering manifest the location of said pair of tongues with respect to the two said positions.

6. A closure cap for containers comprising an inner cup having an internal screw thread, and a closed end having a series of three, outwardly struck tabs, two adjacent tabs of said series arranged at an angle of similar sign with said end, and pointing in the direction of un screwing of said cap, and the other of said tabs arranged at an angle with said end, of opposite sign from that of said two tabs, and pointing in the direction of screwing motion of said cup during attachment, a sealing gasket in said inner cup, and an outer cup, encompassing said inner cup, having a folded, lower edge, enfolding the lower edge of said inner cup, and having a closed end, said latter end having a pair of downwardly struck, diverging tongues, the tongue adjacent the outer of said two tabs arranged at an angle supplementary thereto, and the other tongue arranged at an angle supplementary to the said other of said tabs, said pair of tongues adapted for selective location, in a first position, between said two of said tabs, and a second position, between the inner of said two of said tabs and the said other of said tabs, and means on the cap for rendering manifest the location of said pair of tongues with respect to the two said positions.

7. A closure cap for containers comprising an inner cup having an internal screw thread, and a closed end having a series of three, outwardly struck tabs, two adjacent tabs of said series pointing in the direction of unscrewing of said cap, and the other of said tabs pointing in the direction of screwing motion of said cup during attachment, a sealing gasket in said inner cup, and an outer cup, encompassing said inner cup, having a folded, lower edge, enfolding the lower edge of said inner cup, and having a closed end, said latter end having a pair of downwardly struck, diverging tongues, the tongue adjacent the outer of said two tabs arranged at an angle supplementary thereto, and the other tongue arranged at an angle supplementary to the said other of said tabs, said pair of tongues adapted for selective location, in a first position, between said two of said tabs, and a second position, between the inner of said two of said tabs and the said other of said tabs, and means on the cap for rendering manifest the location of said pair of tongues With respect to the two said positions.

8. A closure cap for containers comprising an inner cup having an internal screw thread, and a closed end having a series of three, outwardlystruck tabs, two adjacent tabs of said series pointing in the direction of unscrewing of said cap, and the other of said tabs pointing in the direction of screwing motion of said cup during attachment, and an outer cup, encompassing said inner cup, having a folded, lower edge, enfolding the lower edge of said inner cup, and having a closed end, said latter end having a pair of downwardly struck, diverging tongues, the tongue adjacent the outer of said two tabs arranged at an angle supplementary thereto, and the other tongue arranged at an angle supplementary thereto, and the other tongue arranged at an angle supplementary to the said other of said tabs, said pair of tongues adapted for selective location, in a first position, between said two of said tabs, and a second position, between the inner 5 tions.

References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,939,597 Greene June 7, 1960 10 2,964,207 Towns Dec. 13, 1960

Patent Citations
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US2964207 *Apr 15, 1958Dec 13, 1960Bryant W GriffinClosure for poison bottles
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Classifications
U.S. Classification215/230, 215/334
International ClassificationB65D55/02
Cooperative ClassificationB65D55/026
European ClassificationB65D55/02G