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Publication numberUS3348740 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateOct 24, 1967
Filing dateJul 15, 1966
Priority dateJul 15, 1966
Publication numberUS 3348740 A, US 3348740A, US-A-3348740, US3348740 A, US3348740A
InventorsWilliam R O'donnell
Original AssigneeValve Corp Of America
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Tamper-proof actuator for handheld dispensers
US 3348740 A
Abstract  available in
Previous page
Next page
Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Oct. 24, 1967 w. R. ODONNELL 3,343,740


WLLLLam R- ODonn ll United States Patent 3,348,740 TAMPER-PROOF ACTUATOR FOR HAND- HELD DISPENSERS William R. ODonnell, Trumbull, Conn., assignor to Valve Corporation of America, Bridgeport, C0nn., a corporation of Delaware Filed July 15, 1966, Ser. No. 565,543 7 Claims. (Cl. 222-153) ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE Tamper-proof actuator for hand-held dispensers comprising a molded upright tubular body having a closed top in which there is a side discharge orifice and also a discharge channel receiving a vertically reciprocable plunger of the dispenser. The body has a weakened frangible shoulder between its ends, separating a larger-diameter lower portion from a smaller-diameter upper portion. The lower body portion attaches to the dispenser container, and when operating pressure is applied to the top for the first time it causes the frangible shoulder to rupture. The smaller top portion is then thereafter telescopically received in the lower portion, which acts as a stationary enclosing jacket and guide.

This invention relates to actuator caps for small handheld dispensers, and more particularly to actuators of the indicating type, which will show whether or not the dispenser has been previously used or tampered with.

Objects of the invention are to provide an improved tamper-proof or tamper-revealing actuator for a dispenser of the kind indicated, which has an especially large stroke while at the same time being capable of economical molding in one piece and additionally presenting a neat and finished, completely enclosed appearance at all times; to provide an actuator as above set forth, which is readily adaptable to Various types of dispensing containers and arrangements; to provide an actuator as characterized, which is simple, reliable, foolproof in use and easily operated, requiring no special skills or understanding to place it in use; and to provide improved actuators as above, which may be readily machine assembled to the dispensers by existing equipment.

Other features and advantages will hereinafter appear.

In the drawings:

FIG. 1 is a side elevational view of a tamper-proof actuator as provided by the invention.

FIG. 2 is a bottom plan view of the actuator of FIG. 1.

FIG. 3 is an axial sectional view of the tamper-proof actuator, mounted on the upper portion of a container, specifically on the closure cap in which there is carried a dispensing pump having a reciprocable plunger.

FIG. 4 is a view like that of FIG. 3, but showing the positions of the actuator parts partway through the first actuation, and

FIG. 5 is a view like that of FIGS. 3 and 4, showing the at rest position of the parts after completion of the first actuation.

In FIGS 3 and 4 the actuator is shown as mounted on a metal screw cap which is carried by the threaded neck portion 12 of a container 14. As seen in FIG. 3, the metal cap 10 clamps a mounting flange 16 of a pump housing 18 against a sealing washer 20 which in turn is clamped against the lip or rim 22 of the container neck 12.

The pump housing 18 comprises a cylinder in which there is reciprocable a piston device 24 having a hollow shank 26 extending up through a central opening 28 in the screw cap 10. Within the shank 26 there is disposed a valve stem 30 which is arranged to engage a ball check valve 32 that is held captive in a socket 34 at the upper end of the shank. In FIG. 3 the ball valve 32 is shown as resting in its seat 36, thereby. closing the passage through the shank 26, and the valve stem 30 is shown as removed a substantial distance from the ball check 32.

It will be understood that when the shank 26 is fully depressed or shifted downward, the valve stem 30 will lift the ball check valve 32 off the seat 36, whereby the passage through the shank 26 will be opened.

The construction of the reciprocable pump, metal cap 10 and container 14 is well known, and further details may be had by referring to U.S. Patents Nos. 3,248,022, 3,223,292 and 3,198,403.

In accordance with the present invention there is provided a novel and improved tamper-proof actuator cap for use with the metal cap 10 and pump assemblage as shown in FIGS. 3 and 4. The actuator is designated generally by the numeral 40, and comprises essentially a single, integral molded piece constituted of a depress button portion 42 and a guide or cap body portion 44, the latter including an enlarged mounting base portion 46.

Prior to its first actuation, the actuator 40 after being molded of plastic substance appears as shown in FIGS. 1, 2 and 3. The depress button portion 42 has a depending hollow central boss 48 with a tapered bore which is adapted to frictionally receive the shank 26 of the pump mechanism and to be frictionally retained thereon. Communicating with the passage of the boss 48 is a lateral discharge passage 50 terminating at the side of the depress button 42 and having the usual mechanical break 52.

As seen in FIGS. 2 and 3, the depress button portion 42 is initially integral with the body portion 44, being connected thereto by a plurality of thin frangible webs 54 and being preferably separated from the body portion 44 by arcuate slots or spaces 56 which extend between the webs 54. The mounting or base portion 46 is connected to the body portion 44 by a circular shoulder 58, which constitutes a permanent connection whereas in accordance with the present invention the frangible webs 44 constitute a temporary connection between the button 42 and the body portion 44.

After the actuator 40 has been molded and provided with the mechanical break 52, it is applied over the metal cap 10 and shank 26 as shown in FIG. 3, whereby the mounting or base portion 46 frictionally grips the metal cap 10 and the shank 26 enters the enlarged end of the bore of the boss 48 a slight distance.

The dispensers may be shipped and stored in this condition, and a customer or user can then know that no use has been made of the dispenser by observing that the button 42 is connected to the body portion 44 by the unbroken webs 54.

In effecting the first use of the dispenser, the user merely presses downward on the button 42 with sufi'icient force to break the frangible webs 54. The depress button 42 will now be guided downward into the body portion 44 by the said portion, and the shank 26 will more fully enter the depending boss 48 of the button. An intermediate position illustrating this condition is shown in FIG. 4, wherein the shank 26 is still relatively loose in the bore 48. Further downward movement of the button 42 will now cause the shank 26 to fully enter and be gripped by the boss 48 and will also initiate the pumping of the contents of the container 14 by virtue of the shank 26 being depressed. Upon removal of the operating force from the button 42, the return spring (not shown) of the pump will shift the shank 26 upward together with the button 42 to the new at rest position shown in FIG. 5. This new position of the button wherein it is now frictionally gripped by the shank 26 is much lower than the initial position, and the user can observe that the frangible webs 54 have been broken through, thus indicating that the dispenser has already been placed in use. The outer diameter of the button 42 is only slightly smaller than the inner diameter of the body 44, the difference being on the order of loose or sliding fit clearances.

Subsequent use of the dispenser merely involves reciprocation of the button 42 and shank 26, starting with the positions illustrated in FIG. 5, as will be understood.

It will now be seen that I have provided a novel and improved one-piece molded actuator which is of the tamper-proof type inasmuch as it will indicate to a prospective user whether or not the dispenser has already been placed in use. If the actuator is intact, in the condition illustrated in FIGS. 1 and 3, it will indicate that the dispenser has not been used, whereas if the actuator is in the condition shown in FIG. 5 it will indicate that the dispenser hasalready been placed in use.

As seen in FIG. 3, the actuator presents a neat and finished, enclosed appearance at all times, even after the webs 54 have been broken. The actuator is inexpensive to produce since it can be economically molded as a single integral piece. Also, the actuator is readily adaptable to various types of dispensing containers and arrangements, and is reliable and foolproof in use, being easily operated Without requiring special skills or understanding. It may be readily machine assembled to dispensers, by existing equipment.

Variations and modifications may be made within the scope of the claims, and portions of the improvement may be used without others.

I claim:

1. A tamper-proof actuator cap for small hand-held dispensers of the type having a depressible discharge-controlling member, comprising a tubular body including means for mounting the body on the container of the dispenser, a tubular depress button having a size in width which is smaller than that of the body to enable a telescopic fit therewith, said body and button being disposed in end-to-end relation and having a thin frangible integral connecting web joining their juxtaposed ends, said depress button having a fitting which is engageable with the discharge-controlling member of the dispenser to effect actuation of the member when the button is depressed, said button and body constituting essentially continuations of each other and the button being rigidly carried by the body before breakage of the connecting web, thereby to indicate non-use of the dispenser, said web rupturing upon the occasion of the first depressing movement of the button and the first use of the container whereby the button is telescopically slidably received in the body and guided thereby, said broken web and lower telescopic disposition of the button being an indication that the container has been used.

2. The invention as in claim 1 wherein the outer diameter of the button is smaller than the inner diameter of the body by loose-fit clearances, thereby to enable a loose sliding fit to be effected between the button and body.

3. The invention as in claim 1, wherein the dispenser has a closure cap carried by the neck ofthe container, said body having a mounting portion engageable with and attachable to said closure cap to anchor the body against movement.

4. The invention as in claim 3 wherein the mounting portion is of larger diameter than the body, said mounting portion, body and button comprising essentially cylindrical sections of graduated diameters respectively.

5. The invention as in claim 4 wherein the closure cap is a screw cap, said mounting portion being press-fitted on said cap.

6. The invention as in claim l wherein the dischargecontrolling member of the dispenser comprises a stem,

said fitting of the button comprising a hollow boss in,

which the stem is receivable to various depths, said stem being fully received in the boss after the button has once been depressed and telescopes in the said body, and being initially only partially received in the boss prior to rupture of said fragible webs.

7. The invention as in claim 6 wherein the hollow boss has a tapered bore, and wherein the stem is frictionally gripped by the boss only after being substantially fully received therein.

References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,772,037 11/ 1956 Rieke 222-541 X 3,185,349 5/1965 Sagarin 222--153 3,281,021 10/1966 Seaquist 222182 ROBERT B. REEVES, Primary Examiner.

H. S. LANE, Assistant Examiner,

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2772037 *Feb 16, 1954Nov 27, 1956Rieke Metal Products CorpPour spout closure for containers
US3185349 *Dec 26, 1961May 25, 1965Valve Corp Of AmericaAerosol dispenser and cap construction therefor
US3281021 *Oct 19, 1964Oct 25, 1966Seaquist Valve CoLever actuator and cap for aerosol valves
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3567077 *Nov 12, 1968Mar 2, 1971Sterling Seal CoDirectional closure for a container
US4180173 *Dec 13, 1977Dec 25, 1979Raychem CorporationTamper-proof closure system
US4241853 *May 17, 1978Dec 30, 1980James D. Pauls And J. Claybrook Lewis And Associates, LimitedDispenser for either continuous or intermittent discharge
US4506810 *Jul 13, 1982Mar 26, 1985L'orealDosage dispenser device
US5219098 *May 28, 1991Jun 15, 1993Canyon CorporationCombination of a container and a manually operated push type dispenser
US5222632 *Nov 13, 1992Jun 29, 1993Canyon CorporationCombination of a container and a manually operated push type dispenser
US5762322 *Sep 13, 1996Jun 9, 1998Summit Packaging Systems, Inc.Actuator assembly to prevent inadvertent product discharge upon installation on stem
US5975781 *Sep 8, 1998Nov 2, 1999Ackermann; Walter T.Lipstick and method for making same
US6290103Sep 13, 1999Sep 18, 2001Lir-Usa Manufacturing Co., Inc.Collapsible cap mechanism for shielding pump actuator and liquid material-dispensing container including the same
US6318595Jun 8, 2000Nov 20, 2001Seaquistperfect Dispensing Foreign, Inc.Finger-actuatable spray pump package with user-ready two-piece spray-through cap, pre-assembly cap, and method for making said package
US6695171 *Feb 12, 2002Feb 24, 2004Seaquistperfect Dispensing Foreign, Inc.Pump dispenser
US7104427 *Jan 21, 2003Sep 12, 2006Precision Valve CorporationGapless aerosol valve actuator
US7249692Nov 7, 2005Jul 31, 2007Seaquistperfect Dispensing Foreign, Inc.Dispenser with lock
US7997451 *Nov 9, 2006Aug 16, 2011Valois SasFluid product dispensing member and a dispenser provided therewith
US9101951 *Mar 20, 2012Aug 11, 2015Rpc Bramlage GmbhDispenser for delivering liquid to pasty substances
US20030150876 *Feb 12, 2002Aug 14, 2003Seaquistperfect Dispensing Foreign, Inc.Pump dispenser
US20040140328 *Jan 21, 2003Jul 22, 2004Precision Valve CorporationGapless aerosol valve actuator
US20060113329 *Jul 7, 2005Jun 1, 2006Seaquisperfect Dispensing Foreign, Inc.Dispenser with lock
US20060138176 *Nov 29, 2005Jun 29, 2006L'orealDevice for packaging and dispensing a product
US20090218369 *Nov 9, 2006Sep 3, 2009Valois SasFluid product dispensing member and a dispenser provided therewith
US20140231463 *Mar 20, 2012Aug 21, 2014Rpc Bramlage GmbhDispenser for delivering liquid to pasty substances
EP0037496A1 *Mar 20, 1981Oct 14, 1981Canyon CorporationAir-pressurized sprayer
EP1109677A1 *Aug 17, 1999Jun 27, 2001ACKERMANN, Walter T.Lipstick and method for making same
EP1109677A4 *Aug 17, 1999Nov 28, 2001Walter T AckermannLipstick and method for making same
EP2330055A1Nov 30, 2010Jun 8, 2011Rexam Dispensing SMTSystem for dispensing a liquid product equipped with a first use indicator
U.S. Classification222/153.6, 222/153.13, 222/321.7
International ClassificationB65D55/02, B05B11/00
Cooperative ClassificationB65D55/02, B05B11/30
European ClassificationB65D55/02
Legal Events
Apr 16, 1986ASAssignment
Effective date: 19860331
Effective date: 19860228
Mar 6, 1984ASAssignment
Effective date: 19840201
Mar 1, 1984ASAssignment
Effective date: 19840201