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Publication numberUS3325032 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJun 13, 1967
Filing dateNov 8, 1965
Priority dateNov 8, 1965
Publication numberUS 3325032 A, US 3325032A, US-A-3325032, US3325032 A, US3325032A
InventorsCormier Louis A
Original AssigneeCormier Louis A
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Bottle cap
US 3325032 A
Abstract  available in
Images(1)
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

June 13, 1967 1.. A. CORMIER 3,325,032

BOTTLE CAP Filed Nov. 8, 1965 FIG.

LOU/S A. CORM/ER INVENTOR.

United States Patent 3,325,032 BOTTLE CAP Louis A. Cormier, 42 Central St., Southbridge, Mass. 01550 Filed Nov. 8, 1965, Ser. No. 506,755 Claims. (Cl. 215-39) This invention relates to a bottle cap .and, more particularly, to a closure for a soft drink bottle or the like which seals the bottle against the escape of liquid or carbon dioxide.

It is common practice in the soft drink and beer industries to provide the bottle with a cap having a tab extending outwardly from the cap to permit its removal without the use of a bottle opener. Such a cap is shown in the patent of Cormier No. 3,200,982 which issued on Aug. 17, 196-5. Although the cap shown in that patent operates satisfactorily, some strength is required to remove the cap with one hand; this, on occasion, has made it diflicult for women or children to open the caps. These and other difiiculties experienced with the prior art devices have been obviated in a novel manner by the present invention.

It is, therefore, an outstanding object of the invention to provide a bottle cap which may be removed easily without the use of the auxiliary tools.

Another object of this invention is the provision of a bottle cap having its own integral bottle opener and which opens the cap in such a way that gas is allowed to escape first and then the mechanical connection to the lip of the bottle is released.

It is another object of the instant invention to provide a bottle cap which has a means for easily removing it from the bottle without the use of a special tool, yet which cannot be opened accidentally.

A further object of the present invention is the provision of a self-opening bottle cap which operates in two stages, one stage of opening serving to release carbon dioxide from the bottle without removing the cap from the bottle and the second stage to remove the cap from the bottle easily without injury to the user.

Another object of the invention is the provision of a two-stage removable cap in which the number of notches in the flange of the cap is reduced to a minimum to substantially remove the possibility of leakage.

With these and other objects in view, as will be apparent to those skilled in the art, the invention resides in the combination of parts set forth in the specification and covered by the claims appended hereto.

The character of the invention, however, may be best understood by reference to one of its structural forms, as illustrated by the accompanying drawings in which:

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of the bottle cap embodying the principles of the present invention,

FIG. 2 is a plan view of the invention,

FIG. 3 is a perspective view of the invention showing a first stage of opening, and

FIG. 4 is a perspective view of the invention showing a second stage of opening.

Referring first to FIG. 1, wherein are best shown the general features of the invention, it can be seen that the bottle cap, indicated generally by the reference numeral 10, is shown in use with a bottle 11. The bottle is the conventional type used with soft drinks and beer; it has a narrow upper lip and an annular bead 12 extending around the bottle some distance below the lip and is conventionally made of glass. From the outer periphery of a circular top 13 extends a depending skirt or flange 14. The top and flange are formed from a single piece of sheet metal and the skirt is crimped about the lip of the bottle providing alternate raised portions 15 and depressed "Ice portions 16. On the inside of the undersurface of the top is located a cork seal to assist in retaining the gas pressure in the bottle.

Extending across the top 13 is a fold or score line 18 which geometrically might be considered a chord of the circle defining the periphery of the top 15 of the cap. The score line may take the form of a stamped depression or it may be a scratch in the metal forming the top. In any case, it constitutes a line along which the metal may bend more easily than along other lines. The line lies inwardly of the inner edge of the lip of the bottle and, in other words, it is chordal to the inner circumference of the lip of the bottle. Extending upwardly into the flange is a notch 17 which extends down to the lower edge of the flange. The flange adjacent this cut does not terminate along the same conventional line as the rest of the skirt. On the contrary, some of the metal extends downwardly .and outwardly of the bottle to form a tab 22. The upper part of the tab merges with the flange 14 and, therefore, carries the usual crimping similar to the rest of the flange. The circular top 13 of the cap is provided with another score line 23 which starts at the portion of the periphery of the top above the notch 17 and extends across the cap in the general vicinity of the center. In the preferred embodiment, .as shown in the drawings, it is located slightly toward the score line 18 from the center of the cap. At the end of the score line 23 is located a notch 24 similar to the notch 17. In the preferred embodiment, each of the notches 17 and 24 extends entirely through the metal in the lower part of the flange 14 but, as it proceeds up the skirt, does not extend entirely through the metal but gradually becomes a mere scratch merging into the score line 18 or 23.

The operation of the invention will now be readily understood, in view of the above description. The cap is placed on the bottle in the usual manner by use of a bottling machine. The cork seal is pressed tightly against the upper lip of the bottle to prevent leakage of carbonation or of liquid. Crimping takes place in such a manner that the depressed portions 16 extend under the head of the lip and lock the cap in place. At the same time, with the usual type of criming, it is practically impossible to remove the cap without the assistance of a tool. When the bottle cap of the present invention is located on a bottle,

" the tab 22 does not extend outwardly from the bottle any considerable distance and, therefore, does not protrude in such a manner as to present any problem; for instance, the bottle with the cap and tab in place can be handled in the usual bottle-labelling machinery with out difficulty. It can be inserted in bottle cases and,

1 eventually, it can be placed in a soft drink dispensing machine without any danger of the tab catching on the machinery or edges and without any danger of premature removal of the cap. In the present case, the tab can be positioned well inside of the machine so that it is not accessible to a person who wishes illegally to remove the cap without placing a coin in the machine.

When it is desirable to remove the cap to have access to the contents of the bottle, it is only necessary to grasp the bottle in the right hand and place the thumb of the right hand under the tab. When the tab 22 is pressed upwardly, because of the mechanical advantage obtained due to the length of the tab, a considerable separating stress is provided along the notch 17. In accordance with the well-known principle of concentration of stress at re-entrant angles, an extreme tearing stress is felt at the root of the notch 17. This stress at the root of the cut is such that, as the tab 22 is pulled upwardly and outwardly from the bottle, a tear immediately starts at the root of the cut and moves quickly up the cut. Further movement of the tab causes a bending of the top 13 of the cap along the line 18. The cap is then in the condition shown in FIG. 3. There is no need (according to the present invention) to provide a notch at the other end of the line 18 since the proper opening required for the bending of the cap takes place at the notch 17. At that time, the seal is released from the top of the cap a suflicient amount to permit the release of gas pressure in the bottle. The cap stays in place on the bottle, however, because the skirt is wrapped around the lip 12 and holds the cap mechanically in place. Further movement of the cap causes stress to be brought to bear on the notch 24 and it opens in the manner shown in FIG. 4, but the top 13 of the cap bends along the line 23 at this stage of the proceedings. At that time, a suflicient amount of the skirt has been released from the lip of the bottle 11 to permit the cap to come off. The bottle cap can then be removed from the bottle and the contents of the bottle can be drunk directly from the bottle or the user may pour the liquid into a separate container for drinking.

By using the present invention, it is possible to provide a self-opening bottle cap made from a single piece of metal (with the exclusion of the cork seal, of course) without the use of a great deal of extra sheet metal or extra expense. The cap can be applied to a bottle by a conventional bottle-capping machine without extensive modification of the machine. No auxiliary tool is necessary for the removal of the cap and the bottle cap is particularly useful at picnics or in the woods where a bottle opener is not readily available. It avoids the use in such circumstances of inadequate substitutes which are liable to break the bottle or hurt the user. At the same time, the removal of the cap does not involve danger of the cap being torn forcefully away from the bottle against the sealing or, possibly, to strike a bystander. At the same time, after the gas pressure has been released, the cap can be operated slightly further in the same direction to remove it from the bottle without any problem to the user.

The present invention uses a twisting action to remove the cap. In other words, the cap during the first stage of the motion opens at the notch 17 in what might be considered a clockwise movement of the portion of the cap bearing the tab 22. Then, when the notch 24 begins to operate in the second stage of opening of the cap, the portion bearing'the tab 22 twists in a counterclockwise direction, as the cap is observed when looking toward the tab. The effect of this type of twisting action is to efiectively unscrew the cap from the bottle rather than cause it to move directly upwardly. This lessens the danger of the cap being projected through the air by the person opening it. It does away with the possibility of the gas being released suddenly in an upward direction with possible consequential danger to a bystander. It is possible to design a cap for a bottle having a particular pressure of carbon dioxide in the interior by making the notches 17 and 24 deeper or more shallow. Any kind of seal may be used between the cap and the lip, i.e., either the conventional cork seal, a rubber, or artificial elastomer material. Furthermore, the cap may be released by one hand operation.

It is obvious that minor changes may be made in the form and construction of the invention without departing from the material spirit thereof. It is not, however, desired to confine the invention to the exact form herein shown and described, but it is desired to include all such as properly come within the scope claimed.

The invention having been thus described, what is claimed as new and desired to secure by Letters Patent is:

1. A bottle cap, comprising (a) a crown member having a flat circular body and and annular flange extending away from the body along the periphery thereof, the flange being crimped around the lip of a bottle,

(b) a tab member extending laterally of the crown member generally in the plane of the bottom edge of the flange integral with a limited portion of the flange,

(c) a first weakening means consisting of a notch associated with the flange in the vicinity of the tab to facilitate the upward bending of the flange and crown in the vicinity of the tab for release of gas pressure from the bottle, and

(d) a second weakening means consisting of a notch associated with the flange at a position generally diametrically opposite the first weakening means to facilitate removal of the cap from the bottle, the first and second weakening means being the only such means provided so that pressing upwardly on the tab causes a first bending about a first score line between the tab member and a second line extending from the first and second weakening means, followed by a second bending about the said second line.

2. A bottle cap as recited in claim 1, wherein the first and second lines intersect in the vicinity of the first weakening means and extend at an acute angle to one another.

3. A bottle cap as recited in claim 2, wherein the first line is arranged as a short chord of the periphery of the cap closely adjacent to the tab.

4. A bottle cap as recited in claim 3, wherein the sec- 0nd line extends across the cap adjacent the center thereof.

5. A bottle cap as recited in claim 1, wherein each notch consists of a cut which, at the lower edge of the flange, extends entirely through the flange, but which is reduced in depth as it progresses up the flange.

References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,715,882 6/1929 Wygonik 215-46 2,156,258 5/1939 Atwood 215-46 X 3,200,982 8/1965 Cormier 215- 16 JOSEPH R. LECLAIR, Primaly Examiner.

D. F. NORTON, Assistant Examiner.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US1715882 *Nov 15, 1926Jun 4, 1929Wygonik Edward ABottle cap
US2156258 *Mar 22, 1938May 2, 1939Atwood Morgan CBottle cap
US3200982 *Mar 23, 1964Aug 17, 1965Cormier Louis ABottle cap
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US7611027 *Aug 28, 2004Nov 3, 2009Sang-Hoon KimBottle cap and a bottle with the same
WO1992016426A1 *Mar 18, 1992Oct 1, 1992Esben BruhnManually removable crown cap
WO2000076874A1 *Jun 7, 2000Dec 21, 2000Loureiro Benimeli Fermin JaimeImproved cap
Classifications
U.S. Classification215/253
International ClassificationB65D41/32, B65D41/42
Cooperative ClassificationB65D2101/0053, B65D41/42
European ClassificationB65D41/42