US 3340645 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent 3,340,645 TRAP GUN James L. Poteet, 2501 W. Washington, Midland, Tex. 79701 Filed Mar. 8, 1965, Ser. No. 437,751 6 Claims. (CI. 43-84) ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE A trap gun having a trigger released, spring-impelled plunger which functions to eject a poisonous charge filling a receptacle of the gun as the plunger enters and moves through the receptacle to expel the charge by impact thereon.
The invention herein described and claimed may be manufactured and used by or for the Government of the United States of America for governmental purposes without the payment of royalties thereon or therefor.
The present invention relates to a getter device or trap gun used primarily for control of predatory animals. More particularly, the invention concerns a trap gun for ejecting a poisonous substance, such as cyanide, into the mouth of a predatory animal by means of a spring-powered propellent.
Trap guns in the nature of the present invention, have heretofere relied on gun powder and primer as a propellant to eject their poison charge into the mouth of an animal. Prior art trap guns of this sort are described in Patent No. 2,456,957, issued Dec. 21, 1948, to H. B. Koch et al., and Patent No. 2,654,178, issued Oct. 6, 1953, to H. R. Graybill. Inherently dangerous in any such gun-device is the wad material sealing the charge which becomes a hazardous projectile when the gunpowder and primer propellant is exploded by an uninitiated or unsuspecting person tampering with the gun. This hazard is effectively eliminated by the present invention which substitutes for the gunpowder and primer heretofore used, the propulsive force of a spring driven plunger which functions to eject a poisonous charge from within a specially formed receptacle. The absence of an explosive blast from the instant device also mitigates any possible immediate injury to the animal activating this device. Plastic materials that can be readily employed in fabricating these receptacles, are especially suitable to effect waterproof seals for the powdered materials of a charge, where fore the moisture problems prevalent in the use of prior art metal shells are avoided.
An object of the present invention is therefore to provide an improved getter device which can be safely and effectively set for operation in relatively unprotected, open areas.
Another object is to provide a more humane spring powered getter device.
A still further object of the present invention is to provide a getter device which retains its effectiveness during extended periods in the field under wide variations in climatic conditions.
These and other objects of the invention will be more clearly understood from the following description of a preferred embodiment of the invention, considered together with the accompanying figure of the drawing showing a partial cross-sectional view of the invention in operational readiness.
The improved predatory animal getter device, as shown in the figure of the drawing, includes an ejector assembly 10, and a conventional anchor stake 11, that are operatively associated in a manner well known in the prior art, exemplary of which is the previously identified patent Patented Sept. 12, 1967 to Koch et a1. Assembly 10 comprises an expulsion unit 12, capped by a head unit 15 in which a charge of poisonous material is disposed for ejection by the expulsion unit. Head unit 15 is essentially an irregularly shaped tubular cylinder characterized by a reduced intermediate section 16, between an upper flange 18 and a relatively longer bottom flange 20. A recessed ridge in the upper surface of flange 18 defines an opening 22 into a chamber 24 disposed in the upper part of head unit 15. Chamber 24 fills a substantial part of the top half of the head unit and terminates in a short internal passage 26. A relatively wide threaded aperture 28 extending up into flange 20, terminates in a shoulder about an opening 30 at the lower end of a downwardly flared tubular channel 33 which communicates aperture 28 with chamber 24 by way of passage 26. A multiplicity of annular grooves 34, uniformly spaced around intermerdiate section 16, are supplied to head unit 15 for a purpose hereinafter more fully explained.
Expulsion unit 12 comprises a housing 40, having a top opening 41, and a slightly larger bottom opening aligned therewith. A shaft-like plunger 42, is axially arranged in the housing for longitudinal displacement through opening 41. Formed as an integral part of plunger 42, near its lower end, is a collar 44, which furnishes an upper shoulder surface on which is operable a camming catch 46, and a lower shoulder surface that normally rests upon a coil spring 48. A disk plug 50 covering the lower opening of housing 40, maintains spring 48 in the lower part thereof, encircling a stub extension of the plunger, whereby the spring is operatively disposed under collar 44. A generally U-shaped element, made from a short length of small diameter rod material, constitutes a trigger member 54, one leg of which is partially reduced to provide flat and rounded surfaces for catch 46. A small pass-age traversing a thickened section 56 of housing 40, and opening into the housing, provides a bearing in which the reduced leg is supported for angular displacement when trigger member 54 is operated. However, a complete upward swing of trigger member 54 is prevented by its contact with a short pin 57 suitably secured in the outer wall of housing 40.
The head end of housing 40 is supplied with screw threads adapted to engage the threads in head unit aperture 28, whereby the top of the housing is brought into contact with the shoulder at opening 30 to achieve the basic structure of assembly 10. As can be seen in the figure of the drawing, this structure has housing opening 41 in axially alignment with the openings to the spaces in head unit 15, such that plunger 42 -is situated to move freely through these spaces. Also evident in the figure is the form of stake 11, shown as a length of tubing crimped at one end to form a widge. Rirn 60, defining the open end of stake 11, has a downwardly extending slot 62 which admits therethrough the extended portion of trigger member 54, and allows flange 20 of the head unit to be disposed contiguous to rim 60 in completing the juncture of assembly 10 to the stake. Loosely retained in an eyelet fixed to the outer surface of stake 11, is a wire link 66. This link is adapted to slip over and hold the extended further leg of trigger member 54 from upward displacement at such time the trigger member is made operative to rotate about the axis of its catch leg by a predatory animal attempting to pull assembly 10 away from the stake. Obviously, other kinds of pivotal and slidable latches could be adapted to retain trigger member 54 for operation in the stake. However, link 66, and all other such latches should also be constructed and arranged to pre vent complete withdrawal of assembly 10 from the stake.
Trigger member 54 is easily cocked by pressing or pushing down on plunger 42, whereby plunger collar 44 is moved against the force of the then expanded coil of spring 48. A rim portion of collar 44 is thus brought into contact with the flat surface of catch leg 46 so as to drive the surface around into a substantially flush alignment with the inner surface of housing 40, whereby the extended part of the trigger member is caused to swing away from pin 57. Thus cleared for further downward displacement, collar 44 moves beyond catch leg 46, and frees trigger member 54 for a counter rotation limited by pin 57, which acts to bring the rounded part of catch leg 46 out of the housing wall to project in the path of the collar. Consequently, upon release of plunger 42 for upward movement by the drive of coil spring 48 on collar 44, the upper edge of the collar is quickly brought into contact with the rounded projection of catch leg 46, which, as illustrated in the figure of the drawing, maintains plunger 42 depressed under spring tension. As a result, the extended end of plunger 42 resides within passage 26, spaced a short distance from the entrance to chamber 24.
Head unit 15 is prepared to receive a charge of powdered cyanide mixture by cementing a small polystyrene wad 72 to the shoulder at the bottom of chamber 24. A load 74 of the cyanide mixture placed in chamber 24 fills it below recessed opening 22. The charge is covered by a larger wad 76 placed in the recessed opening of the chamber and sealed with a paraflin-beeswax or paraffinbeef tallow sealant. Effective waterproofing is required from these sealants since caking of the powdered materials by moisture in load 74 may cause a malfunction of the device. Other possible sealants are plastics such as Aroclor 5460, and mixtures of plastic and parafiin. Thin plastic covers applied to the openings in chamber 24 by heat sealing a head unit made of a plastic such as polyethylene, can also serve as moisture barriers for the load in the chamber. Under appropriate conditions an upper seal for chamber 24 may be accomplished by a compression disk of noncorrosive material, made slightly oversized to snap into recessed opening 22.
Application of the invention to operate in the field, finds the crimped end of anchor stake 11 driven into the ground at a site readily accessible and attractive to coyotes, or like predatory animals proposed to be trapped. Expulsion unit 12 is readied for operation by cocking its trigger member 54, and operatively connecting it to the stake. Head unit 15 is loaded with cyanide mixture and attached to the expulsion unit. A fetid bait, thereafter smeared over the outside of the head unit, fills in around annular grooves 34. When a predatory animal, attracted by the scent, attempts to pick up assembly in its mouth, the upward pull rotates trigger member 54 down and, as hereinbefore explained, releases the force of compressed spring 48 to drive plunger 42 upward. After gaining momentum passing through the small gap below chamber 24, plunger 42 breaks into and drives through the chamber to expel the cyanide mixture therefrom, ejecting it several feet in the air whereby at least a lethal portion of its get into the animals mouth. Death on ingestion of the cyanide generally occurs within a matter of seconds.
Because a spring operated getter device according to the present invention is releasable by a predatory animal with a minimum of noise and shock, the animal is neither frightened nor physically injured and more likely to die of the poison when closer to the device. The animals unconcern in leaving the vicinity of this device has been shown to result in finding the animal dead at an average of one third the distance such animals are usually found from getter devices of conventional design. Moreover, since the animal experiences no pain from physical injury until the cyanide starts to act quickly on its central nervous system, the present invention accomplishes its task more humanely.
While a preferred embodiment of the invention has been illustrated and described, it is understood that the invention is not limited thereby, but is susceptible to change in form and detail.
What is claimed is:
1. A predatory animal getter device comprising stake means to fix said getter device for operation at an animal trapping location, ejecting means operable to eject a stream of poisonous matter, and movable means flexibly connecting said ejecting means to said stake means, said ejecting means including a triggerable expelling mechanism having detachably secured thereto a receptacle means having the volume thereof substantially completely filled with said poisonous matter, whereby said poisonous matter is situated in position to be ejected from said receptacle upon the operation of said expelling mechanism, said expelling mechanism comprising a displaceable element operable to forcefully enter said receptacle means and rapidly traverse through an extended portion thereof, said element being of such length as to ultimately fill a major portion of said receptacle volume and thereby expel said poisonous matter contained therein by impact on said poisonous matter during said traversal thereof, a mechanical propellant means, adjustable to obtain a potentail driving force in contact with said displaceable element, and wherein said movable flexible connecting means includes a trigger component operative to retain said displaceable element against displacement to enter said receptacle by the effect of said potential driving force of said propellent means on said displaceable element until activated by a movement of said movable flexible connecting means.
2. The getter device of claim 1, wherein said displaceable element is an elongated plunger having adjacent to one end thereof a flange, and said mechanical propellent means is a spring having a portion thereof in contact with said flange.
3. The getter device of claim 2 wherein said trigger component comprises a camming surface and a blocking surface, and adjustment of said spring to obtain a potential driving force is effected by displacement of said plunger to move said flange in contact with said spring past said camming surface, and retention of said plunger against operative displacement by said spring is obtained by said flange contacting said blocking surface.
4. The getter device of claim 1 wherein said receptacle means is an integrally formed, irregularly shaped sleeve having an open pocket in one end thereof defining said volume wherein said poisonous matter is enclosed, and an internal passage opening into said pocket, said displaceable element being operable to have longitudinal movement in said passage whereby said displaceable element is situated to forcefully enter said pocket and expel said poisonous matter therefrom when said propellent means is activated to drive said displaceable element.
5. The getter device of claim 4, wherein said pocket is sealed by frangible means.
6. The getter device of claim 4, wherein said sleeve is characterized by an outer surface having a multiplicity of grooves formed therein.
References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,124,726 1/1915 Gray 12427 1,300,654 4/1919 Rose 43147 2,145,488 '1/1939 'Marlrnan 4384 2,353,798 7/1944 Wainwright 4384 2,456,957 12/1948 Koch et al. 43--84 SAM UEL KOREN, Primary Examiner.
ARNER C M Erectin