US 3204835 A
Abstract available in
Claims available in
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Sept 7, 1965 K. G. MICHEL 3,204,835
TUBE STRUCTURE Filed Dec. 4, me?.
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Aff/wim #maf/wow BY 5MM 367W United States Patent C) 3,204,835 TUBE STRUCTURE Kenneth George Michel, Far Hls, NJ., assigner to American Can Company, New York, NX., a corporation of New Jersey Filed Bec. 4, 1962, Ser. No. 242,149 4 Claims. (Cl. Z22- 541) The present invention relates broadly to dispensing containers, and is more particularly concerned with a collapsible tube having an upstanding neck portion formed with a dispensing orifice initially sealed by an integral, removable and restorable closure featuring in the reclosed position both improved sealing capabilities and a relative low profile resistive of accidental dislodgment.
It is known in the art to provide a metal or plastic container with a head portion surmounting a relatively slender integral stem or like means which is severed or twisted to break the connection and expose the dispensing orifice to permit the expulsion of product therethrough. In a structure of this general character it is also possible to invert the stem closure after the integral connection has been broken, for purposes of reclosing the container.
While such a container provides a package of considerable convenience to the user, the closure stem necessarily after location in a resealable position extends a substantial distance upwardly or outwardly from the container neck and is thus exposed to accidental dislodgment with consequent leakage problems. Then too, the use of a probe-like portion provided by the upper end of the closure stem for purposes of re-sealing can readily be appreciated to be somewhat of a compromise, which heretofore has been considered necessary in order to obtain the benefits of a relatively low cost twist-off package.
It is accordingly an important aim of the present invention to provide a container for dispensing applications provided with a neck portion having an orifice initially by a break-away connection integrated with a closure member, the latter member being so shaped and constructed Vas to be substantially entirely received upon the container neck portion in tightsealing relation therewith after fracture of the integral connection and inversion of the closure member from its initial position.
Another object of this invention lies in the provision of a collapsible tube of the foregoing character in which the closure member is of cap-like configuration and is equipped with means on the underside of the roof portion receivable in the dispensing orifice to effectively close and seal the same when the closure is inverted.
Still another object of the instant invention is to provide a dispensing container having the features stated, and which further may be relatively simply molded of either plastics or metallic materials.
A further object of the present invention lies in the provision of a collapsible tube constructed as above, and wherein the closure member in its initially sealed position is disposed in closely spaced relation with respect to the end wall of the tube so as to reduce the likelihood of fracture of the integral connection by other than a twisting or rotational torque.
A still further object of this invention lies in the provision of a dispensing container which comprises a exible container body having a neck portion provided with a dispensing orifice, an inverted cap member integral with the neck portion and sealing the orifice therein, and means on the cap member for resealing the orifice after fracture of the integral connection and location of the cap member upon the neck portion in a normal position thereon.
Other objects and advantages of the invention will become more apparent as the description proceeds, par- 324,835 Patented Sept. 7, 1965 ticularly when taken in connection with the accompanying drawings.
In the drawings, wherein like numerals are employed to designate like parts throughout the same:
FIGURE 1 is a fragmentary side elevational view, with a portion thereof being taken in section, of .a collapsible dispensing container constructed in accordance with the principles of this invention;
FIGURE 2 is a View similar to FIGURE 1, but showing the closure member after fracture from the container neck and after being seated upon the neck in scalable relation therewith; and
FIGURE 3 is a view taken in the manner of the preceding views, but illustrating a further illustrative embodiment of the invention.
A first exemplary form of collapsible dispensing container embodying the novel concepts of this invention is designated in its entirety in FIGURES 1 and 2 by the numeral It), and may be seen to comprise a tubular body 12 which may be constructed of a metal such as lead or aluminum, or which may bea laminate of various combinations of paper, foil and plastics or a plastic of single wall construction as illustrated. Presently in the family of th-ermoplastics `a polyoletin such as polyethylene is preferred, although other suitable materials are polyamides, polyesters, vinyl polymers and copolymers, polymers of vinylidene chloride, polystyrene, and polypropylene and its copolymers.
While not shown, the tube body 12 is sealed at one end, preferably using heat and pressure, while the opposite end of the container has formed thereon a headpiece generally designated by the numeral I4. Desirably an injection molding technique is employed to form the headpiece and fuse the same to the tube body, and the teachings in Strahm Patent No. 2,673,374 are preferably followed. It is, however, contemplated that compression molding may be used, and alternatively, the headpiece 14 may be separately molded and heat sealed to the tube body.
The headpiece 14 in the illustrative embodiment presented includes a sloping breast portion 16 terminating in an opstanding neck portion f8 provided with a transverse wall 20 having a central dispensing orifice 22 initially sealed by a relatively short length stem portion 24 integral with roof portion 26 of an inverted cap or closure member 2S.
It is important to note at this point that by provision of an integral stem 24 which is of minimum length, and by utilization of a cap with roof portion 26 which overlies the tube wall portion 20 in closely spaced relalCe ' tion therewith, it is extremely difiicult if not impossible to break the connector 24 by a canting action. In other words, an intentional twisting or rotational torque is required, and thereby an inadvertent exposure of the orifice 22 by canting or tipping the cap 28 is avoided.
The cap member 28 in the embodiment of FIGURES 1 and 2 further features along the inner surface of its roof or wall portion 25 a central embossment 30 receivable in the dispensing orifice 22 when the cap is inverted to a normal or after-use position in the manner of FIGURE 2. The embossrnent is shown as generally dome-shaped, although obviously other configurations are suitable, as will particularly be hereinafter noted when reference is made to FIGURE 3.
The cap or closure 28 also embodies interiorly thereof an annular groove 32 which interfits with an annular bead 34 on the tube neck portion i8 to provide a snapin-place connection therewith, as shown in FIGURE 2. A threaded connection could of course be employed, and as will also be noted in connection with FIGURE 3, such interengaging means as described may at times be eliminated.
To utilize the container of FIGURE 1, the integral connection 24 between the container neck 18 and cap 28 is broken by use of a knife or equivalent means, or by application of a rotational or twisting torque to collar or skirt portion 36 of the cap 2S. The orifice 22 is thereby exposed, permitting expulsion of the tube contents by application of a squeezing force to the tube body. To then seal or close the orifice, the cap is inverted to the position of FIGURE 2 and snapped into engagement in seated relation upon the tube neck by interaction of the groove 32 and bead 34.
It will -be observed that when the cap member 28 is seated in its'normal or resealing position of FIGURE 2 a relatively low profile is presented, since the cap substantially entirely surroundsr thetube neck portion 18. Importantly, in contrast with the current slender stem twist-olf devices, there is essentially no likelihood of the closure 28 being inadvertently dislodged or knocked from its resealing position. Further, less storage space is required, and also a package can be provided having cap stand-up capabilities merely by use of a score line or like means on the integral connection 24 flush with the top surface of the tube end Wall, so that after fracture there does not remain the stub portion 18a appearing in FIGURE 2.
The latter View also reveals that by applicants invention at least two effective sealing areas are provided, as compared with the simple probe of the prior art. First, the dome-like protuberance or embossment is in wedgetight relation in the dispensing orifice 22, being held there by the snap action of the bead and groove arrangement. Second, the inner diameter of the cap skirt portion 36 is so sized with respect to the outer diameter of the tube neck portion 18 as to be in frictional line contact therewith, assuring that even if in some very remote circumstance product by-passes the seal at 22 and. 30, it cannot travel between the cap skirt and tube neck.`
As earlier noted, the important advantages of a'loW profile and improved seal can be attained by variations in the structure of FIGURES l and 2. This is shown by the illustrative embodiment of FIGURE 3, wherein a container is generally designated at Si), and in common with the earlier described form, includes a body portion 52 mounting a headpiece 54 comprised of a sloping breast portion 56 integral with an upstanding neck portion 58, shown as being devoid of bead or thread means on the outer diameter thereof. The neck portion at its outer or upper end is provided with a transverse 'wall 60 centrally passaged at 62 to provide a dispensing orifice.
Integral with the end wall 60 and initially sealing the oriiice 62 therein is a stub or stem portion 64 surmounted by roof or wall portion 66 of an inverted cap or closure member 68. The closure member of FIGURE 3 features generally centrally of the inner surface of its wall portion 66 a plug portion or generally cylindrical embossment 70 sized to have a slightly greater diameter than the orifice 62 so as to be in tight sealing contact therewith when the integral connection 64 is fractured and the cap 68 located in its normal or resealing position. In this connection, it will be noted that the inner diameter of skirt or collar portion 76 of the cap member 68 is to provide a relatively tight friction fit, and thereby a secondary seal, when the cap is seated on the tube neck with its plug portion 70 tightly and substantially entirely received in the orifice 62.
It is believed manifest from the description just provided, and from that set forth in connection with FIG- URES l and 2, as to the manner in which the embodiment of FIGURE 3 functions. After fracture of the integral connector 64 and seating of the cap 68 upon the tube neck 58 in substantially entirely surrounding relation therewith, a relatively low profile is again provided, producing the advantages earlier mentioned. Additionally, a double seal is featured, first between the probe 7i? and orilice 62, and secondly between the frictionally engageable tube neck and cap skirt portion.
Of course, in either exemplary form of the invention the outer diameter of the cap skirt can be serrated, scalloped or similarly embossed to improve the grip action and for aesthetic reasons. Also for improved appearances, the outer surface of the cap wall on roof 26 or 616 may be decorated. These and other changes mentioned herein, as well as other obvious modifications, can of course be effected without departing from the novel concepts of this invention.
1. A collapsible one piece dispensing container, comprising:
a liexible container body having a neck portion including an end Wall provided with a dispensing orifice; an inverted caip member havin-g a roof portion overlying said end wall in Vclosely spaced relation;
a relatively short length solid stem member integral With said roof portion on the outer surface thereof and to said end wall in sealing relation with said orifice;
and ian internal emlbossment on said cap member receivable -within and entering into said orifice for lresealing said orifice `after fracture of `said stem member @from said orifice 'and location iof said cap member upon said neck portion in a normal position thereon, substantial-ly entirely surrounding said neck portion.
v2. A collapsible dispensing container as defined in claim 1, in lwhich the embossment has `a Alarger diameter than the orifice and is entirely received therein when the cap member is in its normal position.
3. A collapsible dispensing ycontainer yas defined in claim `1, wherein said cap member includes a peripheral `skirt and interengaging rneans are provided interiorly of said skirt and exteriorly on the neck portion for maintaining the embossment in sealing relation with respect to the dispensing orifice.
'4. A collapsible dispensing container as defined in claim i1 in which `said stern member, integral with said roof portion .and isaid end wall, is adapted to be fractured in the plane of the outer surface of said end wall.
References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,392,195 l/ 46 Shonnard 222--541 X 2, 831,615 4/ 5 8 Sherb ondy 222-514 X FOREIGN PATENTS 1,241,061 4/ 60 France.
LOUIS DEMBO, Primary Examiner.