US 3349935 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
S. COCHIN BOTTLE CAP Oct. 31, 1967 Filed June 16, 1966 INVENTOR SOLOMON COCHIN ATTORNEYS FIG5 United States Patent 3,349,935 BOTTLE CAP Solomon Cochin, 2124 Michigan Ave., Detroit, Mich. 48216 Filed June 16, 1966, Ser. No. 558,118 8 Claims. (Cl. 215-9) This invention relates to bottle closures and more particularly to a safety closure for containers provided with cooperating members which prevent removal of the closure by children or through accidental means.
Safety closures of this kind are useful in preventing dangerous or poisonous substances from being removed from their containers other than by an intentional act on the part of an adult. Many substances stored in the home in containers and accessible to children are dangerous to children. For this reason, many efforts have been directed in the past toward providing a container having a closure member which could not be removed by children or through inadvertence.
One such effort to provide a safety bottle closure takes the form of means for securing the closure to the container which is constructed with a maze of stops so that rotation of the closure to various degrees in its reversing movement is required to uncouple the closure from the container. The problem associated with this type of closure is that the closure does not provide a positive lock and the closure and container are expensive to fabricate.
Another form of safety bottle closure employs a series of teeth projecting inwardly from an inner surface of a resilient cap. These teeth are adapted to engage projections on the surface of the bottle neck and prevent rotation when the cap is moved in a counter clockwise direction. If the cap is to be removed, the user squeezes the resilient cap intermediate the teeth, thus causing portions of the cap adjacent the teeth to flex outwardly so that the teeth no longer engage the projections on the bottle, thus permitting the cap to be free for rotation and removal.
A disadvantage of this type of closure is that the cap must be sufliciently resilient to permit the cap to be squeezed and thereby flex outwardly. As a result, the effectiveness of the seal is reduced, thus creating a serious leakage problem, thereby increasing the possibility that the contents of the container will be accessible to children.
It is therefore the principal object of the present invention to provide a safety bottle closure wherein the cap is constructed of a rigid material and the bottle is constructed without projecting surfaces.
In a preferred embodiment of the invention which will be subsequently described in detail, the invention takes the form of a cap of substantially rigid material and having a cylindrical skirt portion internally threaded for engagement with the threaded neck of a container. The inner side of the top wall of the cap member is provided with a resilient tongue member which is adapted to snap into a notch provided on the extreme open end of the container as the cap is rotatably engaged in. a clockwise direction with the neck of the container. Further rotation of the cap in the clockwise direction tightens it about the neck and permits the tongue member to pass or withdraw from the notch. When the cap is then rotated in the counterclockwise direction, the tongue member engages the notch and prevents the cap from being further rotated for removal.
To remove the cap from the container, the cap is tightened sufficiently to withdraw the tongue from the notch, then a finger member rotatably carried by the cap is moved into a position effective to retain the tongue in a depressed position, thus permitting the cap to be ro tated counterclockwise and removed from the container.
Thus it can be seen that to remove the closure from the container, the cap must be rotated with respect to the neck of the container to a position where the tongue is free from the notch. Furthermore, the finger member must be rotated to a predetermined position wherein it retain-s the tongue member in a depressed position, thus permitting removal of the closure from the container. Normally, the alignment required to properly position the cap and the finger member are indicated by instructions provided on the container or the cap.
Thus it can be seen that the present invention completely prevents a person unable to read, such as a young child, from opening the container. It also prevents an adult from accidently opening the container by making it somewhat difiicult to open and requiring him to read the directions for opening it.
It is, therefore, another object of the present invention to provide a safety closure for a container wherein a positive lock is provided between the container and the closure.
It can be seen that a preferred embodiment of the invention may be constructed of a rigid material such as a non-resilient plastic or thin steel rather than the resilient poor sealing material disclosed in the prior art. Another advantage of the invention is that it provides a safety closure which, cannot be opened or removed by children or by adults by accident-a1 means.
An additional advantage of the present invention is that it is extremely simple to manufacture and provides a secure locking or closing mechanism for a container.
Still other objects and advantages will be more readily apparent from the following detailed description of a preferred embodiment of the invention. The description makes reference to the accompanying drawings in which like reference characters refer to like parts throughout the several views and in which:
FIG. 1 is a perspective view of the upper portion of a safety closure illustrating a preferred embodiment of the invention;
FIG. 2 is a sectional view of the closure illustrated in FIG. 1; and shows the resilient tongue engaged with the notch;
FIG. 3 shows the closure illustrated in FIG. 2 rotated to permit withdrawal of the tongue from the notch so that it is depressed between the extreme end of the container against the top section of the cap;
FIG. 4 shows the closure of FIG. 3 with the finger member moved into position to maintain the depression of the tongue member;
FIG. 5 is a sectional view taken along line 5-5 of FIG. 3; and
FIG. 6 illustrates a modified form of bottle neck provided with an insert having a notch adapted to engage the tongue.
Now referring to FIGS. 1 and 2, a closure generally indicated at 10 is mounted on the neck 12 of a bottle 14. The closure 10 includes a cap 16 having an upper wall section 18 and a depending cylindrical skirt 20.
The neck 12 of the bottle 14 is provided with threads 22 which engage a corresponding threaded portion 24 provided on the interior of skirt 20. The cap 16 is formed of a rigid material such as a plastic or a thin steel material.
A metallic disc member 26 having a circumference generally corresponding to the inner circumference of the skirt 20 is fixed to the top wall section 18 by soldering, bonding or the like, and has a resilient tongue member 28 provided adjacent its circumferential edge which extends angularly with respect to the wall section 18.
Still referring to FIG. 2, the extreme edge of the open end of the neck 12 is provided with a notch 30. The
notch 30 preferably extends away from the extreme edge of the neck in an inclined relationship. Normally when the cap 16 is engaged with the neck 12 by rotation in a clockwise direction, the tongue 28 will be depressed between the end wall section 18 of the cap 16 and the extreme edge of the neck 12 until it passes over the notch 30 where it snaps into the notch 30. Further clockwise rotation of the cap will in addition to tightening the cap 16 to the neck 12 withdraw the tongue 28 from the notch 30. An effort to remove the cap 16 from the neck 12 by rotating the cap 16 in a counterclockwise direction will be prevented as the tongue 28 slips into the notch 30, thus limiting further rotation of the cap 16.
In order to remove the cap 16 from the neck 12, a second generally disc shaped member 32 is rotatably connected to the cap 16 preferably by a pin 34 having an enlarged end and which permits independent rotation of the disc 32 with respect to the disc 26. The disc 32 has a basic diameter which permits the disc 32 to move freely of the tongue 28, as can best be seen in FIG. 3. The disc 32 carries a rigid finger 36 and a pin 38. The finger 36 extends radially outwardly from the disc 32 a distance sufiici-ent to overlap the tongue 28.
Now referring to FIG. 5, the pin 34 extends through the upper wall section 18 preferably on the axis of the cap member 16 and carries a disc 40 on its extended end. The disc 40 is operable upon rotation to rotate the disc 32 with respect to the disc 26.
The closure is removed from the neck 12 in the following manner: First, the cap 16 is tightened or rotated clockwise sufficiently to withdraw the tongue 28 from the notch 30 so that the tongue 28 is depressed toward the top wall section 18 wherein it lies substantially in the plane of the body of the disc 26, the depressing action caused by the extreme end of the bottle 12 approaching the upper wall section 18. As can best be seen in FIG. 4, the outer disc 40 is then rotated to carry the finger 36 to a position wherein it overlaps the free end of the tongue 28, thereby retaining the tongue in its depressed position. The cap 16 can then be rotated in a counterclockwise direction to permit removal of the closure 10 from the neck 12.
In the form of the invention illustrated in FIG. 2, the notch 30 is formed in the extreme end of the neck 12. Referring to FIG. 6, a conventional container is illustrated having a neck 42 provided with an unnotched extreme end 44. In order to adapt a neck of this configuration to the closure 10 an annular insert 46 is bonded adjacent the extreme end 44 and with a notch 48 facing in a direction away from the open neck 42. The annular insert 46 may be formed of a rigid plastic material and inserted in a bonded relationship to a neck formed of a dissimilar material such as glass or the like. It can therefore be seen in the form of the invention illustrated in FIG. 6, that a conventional bottle neck may be readily adapted to cooperate with the preferred closure 10 to provide a safety means for the container.
Now it can be seen from the foregoing description of the invention that the cap 16 must be rotated to a predetermined position with respect to the bottle neck 12 so that the tongue 28 is withdrawn from the notch 30. To assist the used in aligning the cap 16, and as is shown in FIG. 2, the exterior surface of the neck 12 is preferably provided with a series of indicia 50 and the skirt 20 of the cap provided with a pointer 52 embossed thereon or imposed by any suitable means. The pointer 52 is aligned with a predetermined indicia in accordance with instructions (not shown) provided on the container or the cap. The instructions would also indicate to the user the proper alignment of a pointer 54 provided on the disc 40 in order to rotate the finger 36 to a position wherein it retains the tongue 28 in the depressed position to permit removal of the enclosure 10 to the neck 12. It will therefore be seen that the indicia 50 and the pointers 52 and 54 not only permit an adult who has read the instructions to easily align the cap 16 and the disc 40 with respect to the neck 12 to permit separation of the closure 10 from the bottle 12, but furthermore a coding system could be set up to render it difficult for a child to properly orient the members for separation.
To engage the closure with the neck 12, it can be seen that the finger 36 must be rotated to a position wherein it is clear of the tongue 28. To assist th user in determining when the finger 36 is free of the tongue 28, the tongue 28 is sufliciently resilient so that as the finger 36 clears its free end, the tongue snaps clear to give a clicking sound. This clicking sound indicates to the user that the finger 36 is clear of the tongue 28 and informs him that the closure is in a position for engagement with the neck 12. I
To prevent the finger 36 from being rotated in a reverse direction wherein it slips under the tongue 28, the pin 38 extends away from the finger 36 a distance sufiicient that the pin abuts the free end of the torgue 28 thus preventing further rotation of the finger '36.
It is apparent that in order for the tongue 28 to engage the notch 30 formed in the open end of the neck 12 of the bottle, that the conventional cork or composition seal ordinarily utilized in bottles of this character can not be used. To prevent leakage of fiuid contents from the container or to separate pills and the like from the working parts of the preferred closure, a cylindrical closure 58 having a closed end 60 and a finger gripping section 62 is inserted in the neck 12 of the bottle as can best be seen in FIG. 5. Preferably the closure 58 is formed of a resilient plastic material and has an outer diameter chosen to permit insertion with a slight pressure and removal with a light tugging effort.
Although I have described but two preferred embodiments of the present invention, it will be understood that many modifications may be made therein without departing from the spirit of the invention as expressed in the scope of the appended claims.
What is claimed is:
1. A container closure means, comprising:
(a) a container having a substantially cylindrical portion open at one extremity thereof, said cylindrical portion having a notch formed adjacent its open end;
(b) a cap adapted to be mounted for closing engagement over said open end of said cylindrical portion of said container;
(0) a resilient tongue member rotatably carried within said cap and adapted to engage said notch and thereby prevent rotation of said cap a distance sufiicient in a first direction for removal of the cap, and permit rotation of said cap in the second opposite direction;
(d) a finger member mounted within said cap and movable between a first position wherein said finger member is remote from said tongue member and a second position wherein said finger member depresses said tongue member to prevent engagement of said tongue member with said notch to permit rotation of said cap in said first direction for removal; and
(e) a member externally connected to said ca for transmitting an operative force for moving said finger member to said first position.
2. The invention as defined in claim 1, wherein said cap comprises a top wall section and a depending skirt portion adapted to threadably engage said cylindrical portion of said container, said tongue member is fixed to said top wall section and closely spaced from said skirt portion, and said finger member is rotatably mounted to said top wall section and operative to dispose said tongue toward said top wall section and away from said. notch.
3. The invention as defined in claim 1, wherein said notch is formed in the extreme open end of said cylindrical portion of said container,
4. The invention as defined in claim 1, wherein when said cap is mounted for a closing engagement over the open end of said cylindrical portion, said resilient tongue member is rotated within said cap in said second opposite direction a distance suificient to register with said notch and wherein a further movement of said cap member in said second direction is operative to withdraw said tongue member from said notch and to depress said tongue member between the extreme open end of said cylindrical portion and said cap, so that said finger member may be moved into said second position wherein it maintains the depression of said tongue member to permit rotation of said cap in said first direction for removal.
5. The invention as defined in claim 2, wherein said tongue member is normally angularly disposed with respect to said top wall portion of said cap member, and said notch is angularly formed inwardly and away from the extreme end of said cylindrical portion so that when tongue member engages said notch upon rotation of said cap member in said first direction, the free end of said tongue will abut the bottom of said notch to prevent said tongue member from being withdrawn from said notch due to a force on said cap in said first direction.
6. The invention as defined in claim 2, wherein said externally connected member comprises a disc rotatably connected to said top wall section and mounted for rotational movement about an axis substantially coaxial with the cylindrical portion of said container and operative to rotate said finger member between said first position and said second position.
7. The invention as defined in claim 1, wherein said cap is formed of a non-resilient material.
8. The invention as defined in claim 1 wherein said cylindrical portion of said container is provided with an angular insert fixed to its open end, and wherein said insert has a notch formed therein which faces away from said open end. 1
References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,316,515 9/1919 Smith 21598 3,019,931 2/ 1962 Thornton 215-9 3,181,718 5/1965 Chancellor 2159 JOSEPH R. LECLAIR, Primary Examiner.