US 3294068 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Dec. 27, 1966 E. HECHTLE MULTI-COLOR PEN Filed April 29, 1965 INVENTOR. MIL HECHTLE 1 ATTORNEY United States Patent 3,294,068 MUL'lill-COLUR PEN Emil Hechtle, (lradell, N..l., assignor to Radiant Pen Corp, Kenilworth, NJ. Filed Apr. 29, 1965, Ser. No. 451,919 Claims priority, application Canada, .liuly 16, 15 64,
11 Claims. (31. 120-4213 This invention relates to a multi-cartridge pen wherein a selected cartridge may be individually projected or retracted to provide the desired ink color.
Multi-cartridge pens, if made with a spring latch to engage an opening in the side wall of the pen body, will. sometimes cause a cartridge to be accidentally ejected from the top push-button plunger opening, unless special precautions are taken.
The present invention has for one of its objects the provision of a stop extending across the top of the pushbutton plunger opening in the cap to prevent accidental loss of the cartridge.
Normally, such a stop would require inserting the pushbutton plunger through the large opening in the bottom of the pen cap. This is the normal procedure of assembly. However, in assembling a multi-cartridge pen in this manner the cost becomes excessive for a mass produced pen, due to the difliculty in locating and inserting a plurality of plungers from the inside of the cap.
Accordingly, an object of the invention is to provide a multi-cartridge pen with individual push-button plunger openings, provided with stops for preventing loss of the cartridges, which pen may be conveniently assembled directly through the plunger openings.
Other objects are to provide a spring-support spacer for the cartridges that may be snapped into position through the bottom of the pen cap; to provide a pen construction that uses a standard length cartridge provided for most pen on the market; that employs the aforesaid features without undue pen length; to provide an assembly of plunger and cartridge as a unit through the outside plunger openings; each plunger having an external lip for convenience in operation; to provide a plunger that cannot he accidentally withdrawn into the pen cap; to provide a pen with internal recesses to permit a metal clip to be attached to the pen cap without interfering with the operation of the plunger mechanism; to provide a plunger that can be manually supported so as not to compress the spring during a cartridge change; and to provide a plunger that can support a cartridge with a swivel type of connection to facilitate insertion of the plunger and cartridge through the lateral cap openings and for lateral movement in the pen.
These and other objects are accomplished and new re sults achieved as will be apparent from a consideration of the multi-cartridge pen described in the following specification, particularly pointed out in the claims; and illustrated in the accompanying drawing in which:
FIG. 1 is a top view of the pen;
FIG. 2 is a front elevation of the same;
FIG. 3 is an exploded view of the various parts, only one cartridge, plunger, and spring being shown;
FIG. 4 is a longitudinal sectional view of the upper half of the cap, taken in the plane 4-4 of FIG. 1;
FIG. 5 is a similar view with a plunger in fully de pressed position for projecting its cartridge;
FIG. 6 is a similar view with an adjacent plunger moved sufi'iciently to release the fully depressed plunger;
dfihdfibd Patented Dec. 27, 1966 FIG. 7 is a side elevation of a plunger and cartridge, partly fragmentary, disclosing the swiveling nature of the plunger and cartridge connection;
FIG. 8 is an enlarged rear view of the same, partly in section;
FIGS. 9, l0, and 11 are transverse sectional views taken through planes 9-9, 14l1ll and ll-l1 of FIG. 2; and
FIG. 12 is a perspective partly fragmentary view of the cap showing the plungers and cartridges being assembled through the outside of the plunger openings.
Referring more in detail to the drawing, reference number 10 designates a pen body to which a cap 12 is readily secured.
The cap is formed with upper side openings such as 14, 16, and 18, in which plungers 2t 22 and 24 respectively are seated.
Within the cap is provided a plurality of cartridges 26 corresponding to the number of plungers, encircled by springs 28, each cartridge guided and supported in an aperture of spring-support spacer 32. The spacer is inserted in the mouth opening 34 of the cap and seated between head 36, and head 38- forrned in the cap.
The cap threads 40 engage threads 42 of the pen body. A metal ring 44 may be seated therebetween to produce a smooth pressure ring between the cap and body.
A bridge portion 46 extends across the top of the cap joining legs 48, extending from the cap structure, forming the side openings l4, l6, and 18. The inside of each leg is provided with a rail 50, which terminates in a catch 52 for engaging the plungers in fully depressed position.
The rear faces of the plungers are each formed with upper radially extending lugs 54, intermediate lugs 56, and lower lugs 58.
The upper lug 54 is provided with an upper stop-surface 55 to engage the stop formed by the underside of bridge portion 46. The lug serves to separate and space the adjacent plungers, and as unlatching means for adjacent caught plunger, The intermediate lug 56 when slightly moved longitudinally, will engage the upper lug 54 of a fully depressed plunger to release the plunger from under the catch. The lower lugs 58 serve to separate and space the plungers.
The plungers are each provided with bevelled edges 51 which ride on rails 50, and an upper latch surface 69 which engages the catch 52 (see FIG. 6) of the adjacent rail to lock the plunger in the depressed position. A lip 62 advantageously extends laterally beyond the plunger to permit the finger to depress the plunger easily, to insure inward pressure, and to prevent loss of the plunger inside the cap by engaging edge 63 of the capwall.
The lower body of the cap is internally provided with longitudinally extending guide ridges 64 which project radially in the cap as is shown in FIGS. 9 and 10, to maintain the plungers in proper position when depressed. One of the guide ridges 66, may be recessed as at 68 (see FIG. 9) to permit the prongs 70 of a clip '72 to be inserted into aperture '74 of the cap 12 and bent over into the shape of the ridge 64, thus allowing the free function of the plunger over the prongs. The spacer 32 is provided with grooves 33 into which extend the guide ridges 64 to align the spacer apertures with the plunger positions.
The cartridges 26 are made of flexible plastic tubing to permit insertion over the substantially cone shaped tips 76 of the plungers which are rounded at the bases of the tips to permit a slight swivel action of the plungers, as shown in FIG. 7. This aids in maintaining proper plunger movement and position on the rails. The reduced neck 78 of the tip (see FIG. 8) aids in the swivel movement. The tip is slightly irregular in cross-section to permit access of air inside the cartridge.
The flexible cartridge also permits insertion with the plunger into the upper cap openings, and entrance from one side of the barrel through the central opening when protracted. The plunger is provided with a width and length sufficient to pass through the side opening. The plunger may be made of rigid material and slightly longer than the side openings to facilitate retention, and inserted by tilting the same during insertion, and then laterally pushing the plunger on to the rail. The plungers do not extend through the spring-support spacer; which shortens the overall pen length.
The assembly may be advantageously accomplished by forcibly inserting the spring-support spacer 32 in mouth 34 between beads 36 and 38, matching the color of the plunger with each properly colored cartridge, en circling a spring about each, and inserting a plunger, cartridge and spring through openings 14, 16, and 18, respectively. The cartridge will flex sufficiently to permit insertion with the plunger affixed thereto. If the cap opening is reduced in length, the plunger may also be made of flexible plastic, to facilitate insertion.
The spring-support spacer 32 may 'be assembled after installation of the plungers, associated springs and cartridges by being inserted over the positioned cartridges extending from the cap, and force-fitted over bead 36, in mouth 34 until seated against bead 38. The plastic of the spacer and cap is made resilient to permit the spacer to be so inserted.
The cap with assembled plungers, cartridges, springs and spacer is then threaded to the pen body with the ring 44, if used, positioned therebetween.
Each of the plungers is driven by its spring until the stop surface 55 abuts the bridge 46 as is shown in FIG. 4. In this position the plunger rides on the two adjacent rails which are radially positioned from the legs 48.
When depressed through lip 62, the plunger 20 will slide down the rails until its cartridge is in the protract position illustrated in FIG. 5. In this position the latch 60 will be forced by the pressure under adjacent rails 50, engaging the catch 52 at the end of each rail, retaining the associated cartridge in a protract position as is shown in FIG. 6.
To release the protracted cartridge, any remaining adjacent plunger is slightly depressed as is shown by plunger 22 in FIG. 6, which causes its intermediate lug 56 to cam against upper lug 54 of the depressed plunger 20 forcing it from under catch 52 into the dot-dash position where the spring will carry the plunger on the rails into the fully retracted position shown in FIG. 4.
Each of the adjacent plungers may thus be used to release the protracted cartridge, and when the protracted cartridge is released, the finger pressure may be withdrawn from the adjacent plunger lip without fully protracting the adjacent cartridge.
However, if another color cartridge is desired, the adjacent color plunger so selected may be depressed sufficiently to engage its catch and thus retain its associated cartridge in protract position.
The spring-support spacer 32 will be retained by the beads 36 and 38 to support the springs in position when replacing cartridges. The shoulder 80 on the plunger shown in FIG. 4 acts as a stop for the cartridge, and retains the spring in position when compressed.
The springs may be seated in small recesses on the spacer 32, or separated by thin partitions extending from the support, neither of which are shown. The flexible cartridge, and the swivel action, facilitate the operation of the pen to protract the cartridge into writing position through the central orifice 82, and enable the plunger and cartridge to be inserted through the cap side openmgs.
The extending lip 62 on the plunger not only facilitates use with a finger, but also prevents the plunger from being pulled into the body of the cap when replacing cartridges.
In replacing a cartridge, the cap with extending cartridges is unthreaded from the pen body. With a finger on lip 62, forcing the stop surface 55 against bridge 46, the cartridge selected for removal is pulled from its plunger and another cartridge forced over the plunger tip 76, without disturbing the retained spring 28. Thus the necessity for extending the plungers entirely through the spring and spacer is eliminated and the pen length is shortened. A standard length cartridge may thus be used.
The snap-in spring-support spacer 32 eliminates the step of glueing the spacer into position, thus facilitating assembly and repair.
The protracted cartridge may be automatically released by any of the adjacent plungers, or replaced instantly with another selected color. The pen may be made with two or four plunger openings if desired.
It will be understood that the invention is not confined to the particular forms shown and described, the same being merely illustrative, the particular embodiment herein shown and described being only one of the many that can be employed to obtain the objects of the invention and accomplish the new results.
Having now particularly described and ascertained the nature of my invention, I declare that what I claim is:
1. A pen having a body; a one piece cap therefor, provided with a side opening extending longitudinally of the cap, and a bottom opening; a cartridge supported in said cap in a protract and a retract position; a spring encircling said cartridge; an apertured spacer positioned within said cap for supporting the spring and urging the cartridge away from the spacer; the side opening in said cap provided with an integrally formed longitudinal extending rail having a stop at one end and a catch at the other end, a plunger riding on said rail and abutting the cartridge, said plunger having a length shorter than the distance between the spacer and the side opening and in excess of the length of the side opening so that the plunger and cartridge are inserted through said side opening of the cap and on the rail; said plunger having a latch for engaging the catch on the end of the rail to provide the protract position of the cartridge, said plunger further provided with a stop surface for determining the retract position when urged by the spring; and means for releasing the plunger from the catch.
2. The pen of claim 1 wherein the plunger is provided with a lip, for engaging the edge of the cap opening in the protract position of the cartridge to prevent the plunger from being fully withdrawn into the cap, when off of the rail.
3. The pen of claim 1 wherein the cap is provided with not less than three side openings, plungers, cartridges and springs.
4. The pen of claim 1 wherein not less than three plungers are provided each with radially extending lugs, for maintaining the plungers in position and to provide camming release surfaces for each other.
5. The pen of claim 1 wherein the spacer is snap-fitted into position in the mouth of the pen cap and supported therein by a head.
6. The pen of claim .1 wherein the spacer and inner surface of the cap are formed with a ridge and groove to align the two.
7. The pen of claim 1, wherein the cap is provided with a pair of ridges, between which the plunger rides.
8. The pen of claim 1 wherein the cap is provided with a pair of ridges, between which the plunger rides, one of said ridges having a reduced crosssection for a clip having prongs, said prongs folded over the reduced crosssection of a ridge.
9. The pen of claim 1 wherein the end of the plunger is provided with a swivel connection to the cartridge to permit flexure at the connection during installation.
10. The pen of claim 3, wherein each plunger is provided with adjacent plun-gers one on each side thereof, each having spaced apart lugs for disengaging an adjacent plunger from under its catch.
11. The pen of claim 3, wherein each of the side openings is provided With a pair of rails, each of said rails tfiorming a rail for an adjacent opening.
References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,642,911 6/1953 De Shazor.
FOREIGN PATENTS Austria.
France. Italy. Italy.
15 LAWRENCE CHARLES, Primary Examiner.