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Publication numberUS3294264 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateDec 27, 1966
Filing dateSep 14, 1964
Priority dateSep 20, 1963
Publication numberUS 3294264 A, US 3294264A, US-A-3294264, US3294264 A, US3294264A
InventorsTom Everington William
Original AssigneeLyons & Co Ltd J
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Apparatus for opening closed containers
US 3294264 A
Abstract  available in
Images(2)
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

1956 w. T. EVERINGTON 3,

APPARATUS FOR OPENING CLOSED CONTAINERS Filed Sept. 14, 1964 2 Sheets-$heet 1 FIG.

Dec. 27, 1966 w. T. EVERINGTON 3,294,264

APPARATUS FOR OPENING CLOSED CONTAINERS Filed Sept. 14, 1964 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 United States Patent-Ofifice 3,294,264 Patented Dec. 27, 1966 3,294,264 APPARATUS FOR OPENDIG CLOSED CONTAINERS William Tom Everington, London, England, asslgnor to J. Lyons & Company Limited Filed Sept. 14, 1964, Ser. No. 396,090 Claims priority, application Great Britain, Sept. 20, 1963, 37 ,060/ 63 4 Claims. (Cl. 214-305) The invention relates to apparatus for opening closed containers, and is particularly applicable to apparatus for opening sealed containers, such as cans, having liquid contents.

In establishments Where large numbers of cans have to be opened, it has been found to be immensely time consuming and inconvenient to open the cans using a hand tool. Machines have been devised for opening containers, but such machines have in the past tended to be expensive and elaborate; furthermore, although expensive, the machines have not been noted for their efficiency.

It is an object of the invention to provide apparatus suitable for opening closed containers, such as cans having liquid contents, which is simple and quick in operation and inexpensive to manufacture.

It is a further object of the invention to provide a simple, quick, and inexpensive method of opening cornparatively large numbers of containers having liquid contents.

One aspect of the invention provides apparatus for opening closed containers which comprises an elongate rupturive member, and first means adapted initially to urge part of said rupturive member through one of the containers whereby to pierce a hole through each of two opposed walls of the container and also adapted subsequently to withdraw said rupturive member from the container.

Another aspect of the invention provides apparatus for opening closed containers which comprises an elongate rupturive member disposed with its length substantially vertical and guided for movement along its length, and first means adapted initially to urge part of said rupturive member downwards through one of the containers whereby to pierce a hole through each of the top and bottom walls of the container and also adapted subsequently to withdraw said rupturive member from the container.

Yet another aspect of the invention provides apparatus for opening closed containers which incorporates: a loading platform for the containers, a first length of guideway for the containers extending between the loading platform and a container opening position, means including a hydraulically operated piston adapted to pass the containers along said first length of guideway to the opening position, at the Opening position an elongate rupturive member guided for vertical movement along its length and provided at its lower end with a double tapered four-sided spike having a cross-section enlarged relative to the remainder of the rupturive member, means including a hydraulically operated piston adapted initially to urge said spike downwards through one of the containers whereby to pierce a hole through each of the top and bottom walls of the container and also adapted subsequently to withdraw said spike from the container, a vessel so disposed below said opening position as to collect fluid pouring down from an opened container, a further length of guideway for the containers disposed above said vessel and extending away from the opening position whereby opened containers may continue to drain into the vessel while a further container is at the opening position, means including a pair of hydraulically operated pistons adapted to clamp the container against lateral movement while said holes are pierced, and control means adapted to control the operation of said pistons.

Still another aspect of the invention provides a method of opening containers having contents of liquid or the like including passing part of an elongate rupturive member through the container thus piercing a hole through each of two opposed walls of the container and subsequently withdrawing the rupturive member from the container.

Further features and advantages of the invention will be apparent from the following description of an embodiment thereof, given by way of example, in conjunction with the accompanying drawings in which:

FIGURE 1 is a side view of apparatus in accordance with the invention for opening cylindrically shaped cans, containing liquid.

FIGURE 2 is a section taken along the line A-A in FIGURE 1, and

FIGURE 3 is a diagrammatic representation of the control system of the apparatus.

The apparatus comprises a guideway along which the cans can be transported to a can-opening location, and a piston and cylinder device disposed at this location, the piston of which bears an elongate rupturive member which has its free end formed as a spike to pierce through the top and bottom of each can to permit its contents to empty into a receiving trough.

Referring to the drawings, the apparatus comprises a horizontal guideway 1, a loading platform 2 where the cans are placed in line in readiness for feeding along the guideway and a piston and cylinder device 3 vertically disposed intermediate the ends of the guideway; the piston of this arrangement bears an elongate member 4 which has at its free end a four sided spike 5 which, on operation of device 3, pierces the top and bottom portion of a can disposed immediately below it to allow the enclosed liquid contents to empty into a generally U-shaped receiving trough 6 having a wire mesh screen 7. To transport the cans along the guideway, a horizontally mounted piston and cylinder device 8 is positioned adjacent the loading platform 2, the piston 10 of this device having a complementarily shaped member 11 which engages a can on the platform 2 to transport it onto the guideway. In so doing, the row of cans already on the guideway is displaced by the width of one can, and the empty can at the end of the row falls forward onto a further, inclined guideway 12 for removal.

To secure each can against movement during the piercing operation, two piston and cylinder devices 14 and 15 are disposed on opposite sides of the guideway and each have an arcuate can-engaging member 16 attached to the piston; member 16 is prevented from rotating by any suitable means for example, by a pin 17 on member 16 engaging parallel guide members 18 attached to the guideway 1. Vertical movement of the can during withdrawal of the piston 4 is limited by a shoe with a central aperture forming a combined stop and guide member 20 secured to the frame of the apparatus.

The apparatus is made substantially automatic in operation, though it requires an operator to place the unopened cans on the loading platform 2, and to remove the empty cans from guideway 12. The automatic control is generally pneumatic and is concerned primarily with the timing of the four piston and cylinder devices 3, 8, 14 and 15; for this purpose there is provided a microswitch 21 and co-operating can-engaging pivoted lever 22 disposed adjacent the loading platform for controlling the operation of device 8, a lever-bleed valve 23 cooperating with the piston of device 8 at the end of its 3 stroke for controlling the operation of devices 3, 14 and 15 during the actual piercing operation, and a further lever bleed valve 24 co-operating with a cam 25 secured to one of the guides 26 of piston 4 to retract the pistons of devices 3, 14 and 15, in readiness for the next operation.

The control circuit can be arranged as shown in FIG- URE 3. Thus a primary air source 30 passes through an air control valve 31, oil filter 32a and electromagnetic solenoid valve 33 controlled by microswitch 21, to the piston and cylinder device 8. Primary air also passes through a further oil filter 32b to lever bleed valve 23b which, when operated, controls swivel valve 34. The valve 34 is the main control valve and controls the operation of piston cylinder device 3 and of arrangements 14 and 15 in co-operation with bleed valve 24.

The operation of the apparatus is as follows: The operator places an unopened can on the loading platform 2, and in so doing microswitch 21 is actuated, through lever 22, to apply pressure to the back of piston and cause device 8 to slide the can along the guideway. Towards the end of its stroke, a came 23a co-operating with the piston 10 actuates valve 23b which, in turn actuates main control valve 34, causing devices 14 and to clamp in position the can to be opened, and substantially simultaneously, piston 4 to descend. At this time the microswitch 21 has been released and the valve 33 applies pressure to the front of piston 10 returning this piston. At the end of its stroke, piston 4 through cam 25 actuates valve 24 to retract the pistons of devices 3, 14 and 15. The operation can now be repeated.

What I claim is:

1. Apparatus for opening closed containers which incorporates: a loading platform for the containers, a first length of guideway for the containers extending between the loading platform and a container opening position, means including a fluid operated piston adapted to pass the containers along said first length of guideway to the opening position, at the opening position an elongate rupturive member guided for vertical movement along its length and provided at its lower end with a doubletapered four sided spike having a cross-section enlarged relative to the remainder of the rupturive member, means including a fluid operated piston adapted initially to urge said spike downwards through one of the containers whereby to pierce a hole through each of the top and bottom walls of the container and also adapted subsequently to withdraw said spike from the container, a vessel so disposed below said opening position as to collect fluid pouring down from an opened container, a further length of guideway for the containers disposed above said vessel and extending away from the opening position whereby opened containers may continue to drain into the vessel while a further container is at the opening position, means including a pair of fluid operated pistons adapted to clamp the container against lateral movement while said holes are pierced, and control means adapted to control the operation of said pistons.

2. Apparatus for opening closed containers containing liquid which incorporates:

a loading platform for the containers, a horizontal guideway for supporting a row of containers of which a first length extends between said loading platform and an opening station and a second length extends away from said opening station,

ram means at said loading platform for engaging the end container of said row and advancing the row along said guideway by a distance substantially equal to the width of a container,

fluid operated piston means at said opening station for clamping the containers against lateral movement during opening,

at the opening station an elongate piercing member disposed above said guideway and guided for vertical movement and actuator means for urging said piercing member downwardly whereby to pierce a hole through each of the top and bottom walls of a container and for subsequently withdrawing said piercing member from the container,

a vessel disposed below said opening station and said second length of guideway to receive fluid from opened containers on the guideway,

and control means for controlling the sequence of a cycle of operations of the apparatus.

3. Apparatus according to claim 2 comprising a switch means connection to said control means and responsive to the positioning of a container on said loading platform to initiate said cycle of operations.

4. Apparatus according to claim 2 wherein said actuator means includes a fluid operated piston disposed above said guideway.

References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,352,378 9/1920 Postma 214 305 2,011,536 8/1935 Cave 198-2l 2,668,550 2/1954 Burge 222-86X 2,713,410 7/1955 Irmscher 198 21 2,984,375 5/1961 Gardner 214405 HUGO Q. SQHULZ, Primary Examiner.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US1352378 *Dec 27, 1919Sep 7, 1920John PostmaCan-punch
US2011536 *Apr 26, 1930Aug 13, 1935Cons Internat CorpFeeding device
US2668550 *Dec 29, 1950Feb 9, 1954Harry BurgeApparatus for automatically opening cans, dispensing their contents, and flushing the cans
US2713410 *Dec 12, 1949Jul 19, 1955Nat Tea Packing Company IncConveyor and transfer system with monitorized control
US2984375 *May 19, 1960May 16, 1961Morrell & Co JohnCan opening apparatus
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4342341 *Jun 12, 1980Aug 3, 1982Southland Instruments, Inc.Blood transfer device
US4735368 *Dec 2, 1986Apr 5, 1988Chemical Waste Management, Inc.Waste treatment apparatus
US5358376 *Mar 19, 1993Oct 25, 1994Top Hendrik Van DenDevice for opening and emptying filled food cans
US7530211 *Aug 6, 2003May 12, 2009Medco Health Solutions, Inc.System for emptying pharmaceutical containers
US8117809May 11, 2009Feb 21, 2012Medco Health Solutions, Inc.System for emptying pharmaceutical containers
US20040123567 *Aug 6, 2003Jul 1, 2004Medco Health Solutions, Inc.Automated container bulking system and method optionally integrated with automated dispensing system and/or automated labeling and packaging system
US20090211198 *May 11, 2009Aug 27, 2009Medco Health Solutions, Inc.Automated container bulking system and method optionally integrated with automated dispensing system and/or automated labeling and packaging system
EP0270200A2 *Jul 16, 1987Jun 8, 1988Chemical Waste Management, Inc.Waste treatment apparatus
EP0270200A3 *Jul 16, 1987May 31, 1989Chemical Waste Management, Inc.Waste treatment apparatus
Classifications
U.S. Classification414/412, 222/85
International ClassificationB67C9/00, B67B7/48, B67B7/00
Cooperative ClassificationB67B7/24
European ClassificationB67B7/24