US 3207441 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
P 1, 1965 F. w. SCHREIBER 3,207,441
SPACE DEODORANT DISPENSER Filed July 6, 1961 llylllylllylllyll I INVENTOR FREDERICK W. SCH RE] BER H 15 ATTO RN 5 5 United States Patent C ration of Maine Filed July 6, 1961, Ser. No. 122,337 1 Claim. (Cl. 239-47) This invention relates to a wick-type dispenser including a container, and means therefor which will prevent spilling of the contents of the container when the latter is accidentally tipped over during use.
Wick dispensers to which the present invention relates are those comprising a container, an opening in the container, and a wick extending through the opening which may be raised or lowered and by which liquid within the container is dispensed, the liquid flowing by capillary action up the wick and evaporating from the wick surface.
A problem existing in the use of these dispensers is that of spillage from the container when the latter is accidentally knocked over during use.
It has been proposed to provide a tight fit between the extended wick and the mouth of the container which would prevent egress of liquid when the container is on its side, but it has been found that a fit sufliciently tight to prevent spilling also introduces other problems.
Thus, constrictions blown or molded in the necks of the bottles or containers, or other comparable means in the openings of the dispensing containers, if capable of preventing spillage, make it difficult to insert the dry wick into the bottle or container and impede capillary flow of the liquid through the wick.
Also, in conventional wick dispensers, the wick is mounted on and is raised and lowered by means of a wire frame member which has side portions engaging opposite sides of the neck of the bottle. The wick is generally folded over a cross-member on the frame and the folded layers extend through the opening in the container. Although this arrangement is satisfactory while the container is upright, the side portions of the frame prevent the wick from filling the neck of the bottle and form channels or gaps along the sides thereof by which liquid may flow from the container when the latter is upset.
In accordance with the present invention spilling of the liquid from a wick-type dispenser is avoided by providing the neck of the bottle of the dispenser with a novel type of flow-restricting element and mounting the wick on a novel supporting frame which coacts with the restricting element to eliminate channels for leakage without preventing ready capillary flow of liquid through the wick.
More particularly the flow-restricting element may take the form of a flexible cup-shaped insert which is inserted in the mouth of the container or bottle and is provided with an opening through which the wick extends. Portions of the insert in contact with the wick are flexible to conform to the wick without squeezing a substantial part of the liquid out of the wick when the latter is raised or lowered.
The support member for the wick and for raising or lowering it, according to the present invention is a frame member over which the wick is folded and includes a stem portion which is enclosed within the wick and thereby does not form channels for the escape of liquid when the container is upset.
The opening in the insert is arranged to provide localized pinching on the wick to hold in it its raised or lowered position, and also to shape the wick to a cross-section which is devoid of channels or gaps normally present due to the folded form of the wick. In this way, the wick need not be clamped so tightly as to impede capillary flow ice of liquid upwardly along the wick during normal use while at the same time leakage of the liquid around the wick is prevented in the dispenser should be upset. The insert and the opening for the wick therein are constructed and arranged to impart flexibility to those portions of the insert engaging the Wick.
Further details and advantages of the invention will become apparent upon consideration of the following specification and drawings, in which:
FIG. 1 is a top view of a wick dispenser of the present invention;
FIG. 2 is a section view taken along line 2-2 of FIG. 1 illustrating structural details of the invention; and
FIG. 3 is a perspective view of an insert according to the invention.
Referring to FIG. 2, there is illustrated a bottle or container 12, provided with an opening 14 in which a feltlike cloth wick 16 is mounted to protrude. The wick may be raised and lowered in the container, and is of suflicient length to extend the full length of the container and project from its upper end. In the embodiment shown, liquid 18 within the container is dispensed or evolved in the form of vapors from the portion 20 of the wick when it is raised to the position shown in FIG. 2. When not in use, the wick is retracted into the container which is then capped.
Raising and lowering of the wick is accomplished by means of a wick support 22 formed of wire or the like and having a hoop-like gripping or handle portion 24 and a lower stern portion 26 of much lesser width formed of generally parallel legs of the wire. Between the handle 24 and the stem 26, and forming the lower perimeter of the handle 24 around the space 27 therein, are inwardly directed shoulder portions 28. The wick 16 is pulled through the space 27 and doubled over the shoulders 28 to extend on opposite sides of and enclose the stern portion 26 of the support member 22, and is secured to the stem 26 near the lower end thereof by means of a fastener 30, such as a staple, ring or the like, to hold the bottom of the wick near the bottom of the container. In this way, the stem portion 26 is enclosed between the folds of the wick and does not provide leakage channels at the edges of the wick. With the wick attached to the support member 22 in the manner described, the wick may be suitably raised or lowered by means of the handle 24 to the desired height.
Although the support member is shown as formed from a length of wire, it may readily be formed to about the same shape from a piece of metal or plastic sheet material.
To seal the opening 14 of the bottle or container 12 about the wick 16, an insert 32, made of flexible ma terial such as molded polyethylene and illustrated in FIG- URE 3, is provided. The insert 32 is cup-shaped, having a cylindrical side wall 34, a bottom wall 36, and an outwardly extending annular flange 38 spaced from the bottom wall. A downwardly extending rim 40 is provided on the flange which cooperates with the insert side wall 34 in gripping the outer end of the neck 42 of the bottle in the manner illustrated in FIGURE 2. The insert rim 40 and the neck 42 are provided With complementary interfitting portions permitting the rim to be snapped into place on the bottle. It will be understood that the flange 38 and the rim 40 may be proportioned to snap over the end of a conventional bottle neck.
A cut-out area or opening 44 is provided in the bottom wall 36 of the insert through which the wick extends. The opening 44 is of a configuration such that the wick is constricted locally and shaped so that leakage channels are eliminated. The opening 44 may be circular or oval and may have inwardly extending proportions for a purpose to be described and in the preferred form has an approximately figure-eight shape including opposed inwardly directed projections 46 on 01)- posite sides thereof.
The .opening 44 receives the wick snugly and the projections 46 extend into the edges of the wick between the adjacent edges of the confronting faces of the folded wick to prevent flow of liquid along any slot, gap or indentation which may be present therealong. Further the figure-eight configuration causes the lateral edge portions of the wick to be shaped into a semi-circular cross-section to eliminate channels which would normally be present between the foldedportions of the wick. The projections 46 are flexible and can be deflected or bent during raising or lowering of the wick so that the wick can readily be raised and lowered withoutsqueezing the wick and removing a large quantity of liquid held therein.
The insert is preferably made of a low density polyethylene, but it may be made of other plastic or metallic materials such as synthetic or natural rubber, vinyl plastics and the like. a
In the embodiment illustrated, the width of the handle 24 of the support member is such that it can be retracted into the insert 32, to enable a cap to be placed on the bottle. When the wick is pushed into the container, after use of the dispenser, the insert 32 serves to receive and retain part of the liquid which may be squeezed from the wick, thereby keeping the outer end of the wick wet and ready for immediate use.
The above arrangement is effective in preventing the spilling of liquid from a wick-type dispenser when a cap or closure member of the latter is removed and the dispenser is accidentally tipped over during use. By disposing the stem 26 within the wick, and compressing the opposing edges of the folded wick inwardly against the projections 46, any channels for the flow of liquid outside of the wick are closed. At the same time, the insert 32 does not appreciably impede or restrict the capillary flow of liquid upwardly through the wick.
The dispenser may be assembled by first connecting the wick to the support 22 and then pushing the lower end of the wick and support through the opening 44 in the insert 32. The assembled insert, holder and vwick are inserted through the neck of the filled bottle. The insert can be snapped into its seated position in the bottle neck or it may be disposed loosely in the neck 42. In the latter case, when the bottle is capped, the insert will be snapped by the cap into its seated position in the neck.
Many modifications willbe apparent to those skilled in the art, and the present invention is to be limited only as defined in the following claim.
A wick dispenser including a liquid holding container, an opening in said container, a cup-shaped insert of a flexible plastic material engaging in said opening and hav ing a flexible bottom having a cut-out area therein of substantially figure eight shape surrounded by a flexible marginal portion of said bottom extending essentially perpendicular to the axis of said opening, a wick extending through and completely filling said cut-out area and movable relative thereto between extended and retracted positions, said marginal portion flexing in the direction of movement of said wick to maintain a seal between said marginal portion and said wick, said cut-out area being shaped to engage and form said wick to substantially complemental cross-section, an elongated support member within said wick comprising an upper handle portion and a stem portion substantially centrally disposed in and of lesser width than said wick and said handle portion extending lengthwise of and completely enclosed within said wick, shoulders between said handle portion and said stem over whiehsaid wick is folded to enclose said stem, and means attaching the lower portion of said wick to said stem at a point spaced from said shoulders.
References Cited by. the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,616,759 11/52 Walsh 239-47 2,867,829 1/59 Aversa 132-887 3,028,100 4/62 Xenakis et al. 239-47 FOREIGN PATENTS 974,962 10/50 France. 984,702 2/51 France. 935,150 11/55 Germany.
EVERETT W. KIRBY, Primary Examiner.
LOUIS J. DEMBO, EUGENE F. BLANCHARD,