US 3129714 A
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A ril 21, 1964 E. M. SCHAEFER APPARATUS FOR REMOVING LABELS FROM BOTTLES Filed 001;. 4, 1962 IN VENToR: l8 EDWARD M. $CHAEFER,
4 a M H 3 n-rromvsvs United States Patent 3,129,714 APPARATUS FOR REMOVING LABELS FROM BOTTLES Edward M. Schaefer, 4300 Grace Ave., St. Louis, Mo. Filed on. 4, 1962, S81. No. 228,367 2 Claims. (Cl. 134--201) This invention relates to improvements in apparatus for removing labels from bottles and, in particular, is concerned with a perforate tray device adapted to be filled with labeled bottles which may be immersed in a container filled with degumming solvent.
It has long been a problem to provide a simple device for removing gummed labels from bottles. This is particularly true where the capped bottles, whether empty or filled with low density material, float in water or other degumming solvent.
By means of this invention there has been provided a simple perforate tray device, which can be filled with bottles having gummed labels, with a lid provided to prevent the bottles from floating, and the entire tray can be put inside a container filled with a convenient solvent for degumming the labels. The tray filled with bottles with the gummed labels can then be left in the container for a period of time sufficient to degum the labels after which the tray can then be taken out and rinsed and the bottles can be used in any desired fashion for relabeling, where desired, and the like.
The invention finds particular employment in pharmacies where capped prescription bottles, sometimes filled with pharmaceutical preparations and sometimes unfilled, are desired to have the labels removed and relabeled with the pharmacists own label. A large number of bottles can be simply put in the tray with the lid attached to an appropriate level and the tray may then be immersed in the container filled with the solvent. By a special retaining device, the tray with the buoyancy effect of the bottles can be kept from floating so that the bottles are immersed for the desired period of time. After immersion, when the labels are degummed by the action of the solvent, the tray may be withdrawn and the bottles can be rinsed and then dried in appropriate fashion and relabeled.
The above features are objects of this invention and further objects will appear in the detailed description which follows and will be otherwise apparent to those skilled in the art.
For the purpose of illustration, there is shown in the accompanying drawing a preferred embodiment of the invention. It is to be understood that these drawings are for the purpose of example only and that the invention is not limited thereto.
In the drawings:
FIGURE 1 is a top plan view of the immersion tray immersed in a container;
FIGURE 2 is a view in section taken on the line 2-2 of FIGURE 1;
FIGURE 3 is an enlarged view in section taken on the line 33 of FIGURE 1 showing the operation of the adjustable prongs for adjusting the height level of the tray lid; and
FIGURE 4 is an enlarged fragmentary View showing the spring biasing means for the lid adjustable prongs taken in section on the line 4-4 of FIGURE 1.
Referring now to the drawings, the apparatus for removing labels from bottles is generally indicated by the reference numeral 19, and includes as its major components a solvent container 12, a wire tray 14 having a handle 16, and an adjustable wire lid 18 having stationary retaining prongs 20, and an adjustment prong device 22.
3,129,714 Patented Apr. 21, 1964 The container 12, as best shown in FIGURES 1 and 2, has an overhanging and inwardly extending shelf member 24, which prevents the tray from floating when filled with buoyant bottles. The container also has a beaded upper edge 26 by means of which a latch, to be further described, is engaged to prevent the tray from rising at the other end.
The wire tray 14 has side walls 28 which have a vertical depth just slightly less than the distance from the shelf 24 to the bottom of the container, whereby the tray may be inserted thereunder. The tray is also provided upon the handle 16 with a retainer latch 30, which is biased by a spring 31, and is adapted to engage the underside of the container bead 26 to keep this end from rising due to floating action of the buoyant bottles.
The lid 18, as best shown in FIGURE 1, has a pair of stationary prongs or studs 2% extending beyond the tray. These prongs are adapted to be inserted in the wire mesh opening of the side walls of the tray as best shown in FIGURES 2 and 3. At the other end of the tray lid there is the adjustable prong device 22. The adjustable prong device is best shown in FIGURES 3 and 4 and comprises an adjustable prong 32, which is spring biased by springs 34 to the position shown in full lines in FIG- URE 3. Prong 32 is received within a housing 35 for slidable movement therein, and a pair of stabilizing wings 36 extend to either side so that the device does not tilt, and the handle 38 is maintained in vertical position. The lid is further provided with a vertical support member 40 so that the operator may grasp this with the thumb of a hand and depress the prong handle toward the vertical support with the forefinger in drawing the adjustable prong back out of the engaged position to the position shown in dotted lines in FIGURE 3 when adjustment of the lid or removal is desired.
In use, the container 12 is filled with a suitable solvent to the level 41 shown in FIGURE 3 for degumming the bottle labels. Tln's solvent may be acetone, a detergent, or soapy solution of water, or even just water. Then the tray, removed from the container, is filled with a number of bottles. The lid is then attached to the tray by moving the adjustable prong to the dotted line position shown in FIGURE 3, and the lid is secured to the tray by inserting the stationary prongs 2th in the wire mesh at an appropriate position over the bottles, and then the other end of the lid is secured in the horizontal relationship to the other end of the tray by releasing the adjustable prong handle 33.
The tray filled with the bottles is then inserted in the container with the end opposite the handle being inserted first underneath the retaining shelf 24 of the container. In this operation, the retainer latch 30 is disengaged against the action of its biasing spring 31, and, when the tray is dropped to the position shown in FIGURE 3, the retainer latch is released, thus locking the tray in place.
In this operation, the tray, when properly installed, is insured against floating by the limiting action of the retainer shelf 24 of the container and the action of the retainer latch 30 at the opposite end.
After the tray has been immersed in the container, bottles 42, having gummed labels 44 as shown in FIG- URE 3, may be left standing for a period of time suflicient for degumming the labels. It will be understood that any number of bottles can be filled in the tray up to its capacity. After standing for the necessary length of time, the tray is removed by first of all disengaging the retainer latch 30 and then removing the tray. The tray with the bottles may then be rinsed in another container having a rinse solution, or under tap water as desired.
In the operation, the gummed labels Will normally float away from the bottles, but, if not, Wash action will remove them and they can then be scrapped.
The bottles with the labels removed may then be dried and employed in any desired fashion and relabeled as required.
Various changes and modifications may be made within the process of this invention as will be readily apparent to those skilled in the art. Such changes and modifications are Within the scope and teaching of this invention as defined by the claims appended thereto.
What is claimed is:
1. A device for removing gummed labels from buoyant bottles comprising a container adapted to be filled with a degumming solvent, a perforate tray having a handle extending outside said container, said tray having side Walls of substantial depth and receiving a plurality of labeled bottles therein and a tray lid having means attachable to the tray in vertically adjustable relation, means for maintaining the tray in submerged relation in the container when filled with solvent against the buoying action of buoyant bottles within the tray, said means comprising an inwardly extending shelf at one end of the container adapted to serve as an overhanging stop member for the tray when inserted in the container thereunder and a spring biased latch means supported from the lid handle and adapted to engage the exterior of the container at an end opposite to said shelf end to limit the vertical movement of the tray, said tray being immersible in solvent in the container with said bottles being kept immersed in the solvent.
2. A device for removing gummed labels from buoyant bottles comprising a container adapted to be filled with a degumming solvent, a perforate tray having a handle extending outside said container, said tray having side walls of substantial depth and receiving a plurality of labeled bottles therein and a tray lid having means attachable to the tray in vertically adjustable relation, said means comprising a prong means at one end adapted to fit in selected perforations of one end of the tray and adjustable prong means at an opposite end of the tray engageable in biased relation with selected perforations at an opposite end of the tray, said adjustable prongs being provided with a handle for disengaging operation, means for maintaining the tray in submerged relation in the container when filled with solvent against the buoying action of buoyant bottles within the tray, said means comprising an inwardly extending shelf at one end of the container adapted to serve as an overhanging stop member for the tray when inserted in the container thereunder, and a spring biased latch means supported from the lid handle and adapted to engage the exterior of the container at an end opposite to said shelf end to limit the vertical movement of the tray, said tray being immersible in solvent in the container with said bottles being kept immersed in the solvent.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 863,649 Robinson Aug. 20, 1907 2,050,634 Stegemann Aug. 11, 1936 2,661,865 Wendt Dec. 8, 1953 2,820,446 Freeman Jan. 21, 1958