US 3434632 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
March 25, 1969 J. A. BATROW 3,434,532
LIQUID DISPENSING APPARATUS Filed Aug, 24, 1967 Sheet of s John A. Bafrow ZNVENTOR.
March 25, 1969 J. A. BATROW LIQUID DISPENSING APPARATUS Sheet Filed Aug. 24, 1967 John A. Bafraw INVENTOR.
' -9 BY EM Army: 7
Sheet Filed Aug. 24, 1967 Fig.7
John A. Barrow INVENTOR.
United States Patent US. Cl. ZZZ-400.5 Claims ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE Apparatus for pressurizing and discharging liquid from a sealed container wherein pressurized gas is, through a common control handle, introduced into the liquid container from a pressurized gas container simultaneously with a selected dispensing of the liquid so as to maintain a substantially constant pressurization of the liquid remaining. The gas container will be a self-contained unit incorporating a pressure responsive valve with the discharge therefrom being effected through a physical movement of the container in response to a movement of the spigot control handle with the gas discharging either directly into a common chamber with the liquid or into an expansible flexible bag by which the liquid can be pressurized without an actual commingling of the gas and the liquid. In one form the gas container and discharge spigot are mounted on a common base which is in turn fastened within an opening in one end of the liquid container. The gas used will be an appropriate low pressure Freon while the liquid container will be constructed of an appropriate plastic.
This is a continuation-in-part of application Ser. No. 634,147, filed Apr. 27, 1967, now US. Patent No. 3,373,- 907, for Control Unit For Liquid Dispensing, and is generally concerned with liquid dispensing apparatus utilized in conjunction with beer and other liquids, normally carbonated in nature.
More specifically, the instant invention relates to a control unit, incorporating a pressurized gas container, wherein a discharge of the gas into the liquid container will be effected simultaneously with and solely during the dispensing of the liquid.
One of the primary objects of the instant invention resides in the provision of apparatus wherein a single control is utilized in effecting the gas and liquid discharge.
Another highly significant object of the instant invention resides in the utilization of a low pressure gas in conjunction with a plastic container, the use of which is made possible by the utilization of a low pressure gas, thereby avoiding the expense, additional weight, etc. associated with conventional high pressure kegs heretofore required for the barreling of draft beer or the like.
Further, it is an object of the instant invention to provide the gas introducing and liquid dispensing apparatus with a self-contained gas container incorporating a conventional pressure responsive release wherein the discharge of gas is effected by a physical movement of the gas container or can against a fixed abutment means.
In conjunction with the above object, it is also an important object of the instant invention to provide that the gas container be mounted on a single base or body with the discharge spout with the entire base being removably mountable on a keg or the like in communication with the fluid containing interior thereof.
In addition, an important object of the instant invention resides in the utilization of a gas expansible bag within the liquid container whereby the desired pressure can be maintained without an introduction of the gas directly into the liquid.
Basically, the instant invention, while not specifically limited thereto, is contemplated for use in the conditioning and dispensing of beer, and as such, will be associated with a keg-type container. The container itself will be constructed of a suitable plastic with the pressurizing and dispensing gas consisting of a low pressure Freon. The actual introduction of the gas and dispensing of the beer will be achieved through a control unit incorporating a chamber for the reception of the gas container, and a discharge spout with the control handle for the discharge spout also activating the gas container and effecting a release of the gas. The released gas subsequently discharges either directly into the beer or into an expansible bag or envelope, in each instance the desired pressurization of the beer being effected.
These together with other objects and advantages which will become subsequently apparent reside in the details of construction and operation as more fully hereinafter described and claimed, reference being had to the accompanying drawings forming a part hereof, wherein like numerals refer to like parts throughout, and in which:
FIGURE 1 is a perspective view of a beer keg incorporating the features of the instant invention;
FIGURE 2 is an enlarged partial cross-sectional view taken substantially on a plane passing along line 22 in FIGURE 1;
FIGURE 3 is a cross-sectional view through the beer keg of FIGURE 1 illustrating a slightly modified form of dispensing apparatus;
FIGURE 4 is an enlarged cross-sectional detail taken substantially on a plane passing along line 44 in FIG- URE 3;
FIGURE 5 is a perspective view of the expansible envelope utilized to receive the introduced gas;
FIGURE 6 is a side elevational view of a modified form of the dispensing apparatus;
FIGURE 7 is an enlarged cross-sectional detail of the gas discharging apparatus of the unit of FIGURE 6; and
FIGURE 8 is a cross-sectional detail taken substantially on a plane passing along line 8-8 in FIGURE 7.
Referring now more specifically to the drawings, reference numeral 10 is used to generally designate the dispensing apparatus normally associated with a beer keg 12, although equally adaptable for use in conjunction with other pressurized beverage type liquids.
The apparatus 10 is to be mounted centrally within one recessed end wall 14 of the keg 12, this end wall 14 having an internally threaded aperture or hole 16 therethrough. The apparatus 10 itself includes an enlarged annular base or body 18 having an integral rearwardly projecting externally threaded annular portion 20 which is threadedly received within the wall hole 16 so as to position and sealingly engage the base 18 against the outer face of the front wall 14 in overlying and surrounding relation to the hole 16.
Noting the mounted base 18 of FIGURE 2, an internally threaded bore 22 is provided therethrough toward the lower end of the central portion thereof defined by the annular externally threaded rearwardly projecting mounting portion 20. This bore 22 threadedly receives the externally threaded inner end portion 24 of the dispensing spigot 26 with the spigot 26 being locked in position by a suitable lock nut 28 threaded on a reduced diameter externally threaded inwardly extending extension 30, the nut being threadedly received over the extension 30 and contacting the inner face of the base 18. The extreme inner end of the spigot portion 30 further mounts, through an appropriate cap nut 32, the flanged inner end portion 34 of a dispensing tube 36 extending into the liquid chamber of the keg 12 and including a plurality of foam producing convolutions, of course assuming that the beverage involved is beer. The shank portion of the spigot just described defines an internal flow passage, the forward end of which communicates with a downwardly angled passage defining spout 38, the angle of which is at approximately degrees so as to provide for a discharge beyond the extreme end of the keg, notwithstanding the generally recessed mounting of the apparatus 10. The actual communication between the shank passage and the spout passage is effected through an enlarged chamber 40 which opens upwardly through the spigot 26 and is selectively closed and sealed by a cap or cap unit 42 threaded over the upper end of the spigot 26. An annular shoulder or seat 44 is defined over the angled flow passage through the spout or outlet end 38 with a sealing plug 46 selectively seating thereon so as to prevent discharge through the spout 38.
The sealing plug 48 includes an upwardly directed diaphragm type hollow collar defining portion 48 which is snugly received and sealingly clamped within the upper portion of the enlarged chamber 40 by means of an integral depending central collar 50 on the cap 42. The collar-like portion 48 is of course flexible so as to enable a vertical retraction of the sealing plug 46 away from the seat 44 to permit a flow of the liquid therethrough.
The retraction of the plug 46 is effected through a vertically elongated rigid rod 52 having a head 54 on the lower end thereof permanently embedded within the plug 46 itself. The rod projects vertically through a central aperture in the cap 42 for pivotal engagement with a handle 56 in a manner whereby a rearward rocking of the handle 56 about the lower rear arcuate corner 58 will effect a vertical movement of the rod 52 and a vertical retraction of the plug 46 away from the seat 44. Upon a release of the handle 56, the plug 46 will be returned to its seated position through the action of a coil compression spring 60 encircling the rod 52 and engaged between the inner end of the cap 42, within the depending collar 50 thereon, and the upper surface of the plug 46. This return movement of the plug 46 will also cause an automatic positioning of the handle 56 into its at rest position.
Provided vertically above the spigot bore 22, in general alignment with the handle 56, is an enlarged chamber defining cylinder 62. This cylinder 62 has one end thereof rigidly affixed to the inner surface of the base 18, within the annular mounting portion 20, and projects inwardly therefrom to terminate in an open inner end selectively closed by a flanged cap 64. The cap 64 is secured to the cylinder 62 by being threaded thereon or by any other appropriate releasable means, such as opposed bayonet slots and detents indicated by reference numeral 66. The chamber 68, defined by the cylinder 62, receives a gas container or can 70, similar to the conventional aerosol type dispensing cans, and includes an inwardly directed pressure controlled valved discharge 72 of the type which is normally spring-biased closed upon the withdrawal of the physical valve opening pressure thereon. This discharge end 72 is received within and defines a passage through a flange surrounded bore 74 provided centrally through the cap '64 and having a flexible duckbill valve 76 mounted thereon.
The actual discharge of gas from the container or can will be effected by a physical forward moving of the can 70 against the cap retained discharge end 72. This movement of the can 70 is effected by means of an elongated rod-like plunger 78 slidably received through a second bore 80 communicating centrally with the base mounted end of the chamber 68 defined by the cylinder 62. The plunger 78 includes an enlarged container engaging head 82 on the inner end thereof, and an enlarged smooth-surfaced contact head 84 on the outer end thereof with the length of the shaft of the plunger 78 being such so as to allow for a sliding movement through the bore 80 prior to an engagement of the heads 82 and 84 with the base 18. The handle 56 includes a rearwardly directed smooth-edged flange 86 which, upon a rearward rocking of the handle 56, engages against the outer enlarged plunger head 84 and effects an inward movement thereof which is transmitted, through the plunger 78, to an inward movement of the can 70 against the retained valved outlet end 72. This in turn produces a discharge of the gas which is automatically terminated upon a removal of pressure from the handle 56, the return spring within the valved outlet 72 effecting a rearward movement of the can 70 as well as the activating plunger 78. In this manner, it will be appreciated that a device has been defined wherein a simultaneous introduction of pressurized gas into the keg 12 is effected in conjunction with the dispensing of the beer or other beverage therefrom through the spigot 26. This in turn results in a positive maintenance of the necessary pressurization of the beer or the like, and the preservation of the desired effervescence.
Referring now specifically to FIGURES 3-5, it will be appreciated that the instant invention also contemplates the provision of a gas receiving bag 88 in conjunction with the previously described apparatus. This bag 88 will include a mounting neck 90 received over the chamber defining cylinder 62 for sealed locking engagement therewith by any conventional type of clamp means 92, such as a flexible strap with an over-center clamp thereon. The bag 88 is to be flexible in nature and expansible so as to conform closely to the interior shape of the keg 12 and gradually expand so as to fill substantially the entire interior of the keg 12. In this manner, through the utilization of the bag 88, which incidently may be of polyethylene, the desired pressure is maintained on the beer while at the same time avoiding any direct contact between the introduced gas and the beer, thus maintaining the flavor and freshness of the beer and avoiding any gas contamination.
With continued reference to FIGURES 3 and 4, it will be noted that the plunger 94 illustrated therein is physically connected to the spigot handle 96 by a link or pair of links 98 whereby a direct movement of the gas container moving plunger 94 is effected in response to a movement of the spigot handle 96, this link connection also assuring a positive retraction of the plunger 94 so as to enable a termination of the gas discharge. It will of course be appreciated that the spigot associated with the handle 96 in all other aspects operates in the manner detailed with regard to the spigot 26 of FIGURE 2.
The above described apparatus is particularly adaptable for use with two and one-quarter gallon kegs or barrels with larger kegs, for example seven and threequarter gallons, fifteen and one-half gallons, or thirtyone gallons, being accommodated through the utilization of the modified apparatus illustrated in FIGURES 6-8. FIGURE 6 illustrates a large keg 100 positioned upright beneath a counter top 102 with the discharge of the beer or the like 104 from the interior thereof being effected through a conventional spigot 106 having a swinging handle 108 thereon. The spigot 106 will of course communicate directly with the interior of the keg 100 through a plug-type seal or bung 110. Also communicated with the interior of the keg 100 through the plug 110 is a gas line 112 which has the remote end portion 114 thereof threaded onto an annular hollow boss 116 centrally affixed to a cap 118. This cap 118, similar to the cap 64, closes the discharge end of a chamber 120 defined by a hollow cylindrical wall 122. The chamber 120 receives a gas container or can 124 provided with a conventional pressure responsive valved release end 126 which is received within the hollow boss 116 in direct communication with the line 112. The cylinder 122 is clamped to the exterior of the keg 100 in any suitable manner, such as by securing straps 126 encircling both the keg 100 and the cylinder 122. The cap 118 closing the upper end of the cylinder 122 is releasably affixed in any suitable manner such as through the utilization of cylinder mounted detents 128 received in bayonet slots 130 in the cap 118. The lower end of the cylinder 122 is open and has a can supporting and moving flap 132 associated therewith. The flap 132 has one end thereof hingedly engaged, as at 134, with the lower end of the cylinder 122, and extends diametrically thereacross and therebeyond with the second end of the flap 132 being affixed to a flexible control cable 136. The actual engagement of the cable 136 with the second end of the flap 132 can be effected by an adjustable stop 138 clamped to the wire 136 immediately below the flap 132 through which the wire 136 passes. This Wire or control cable 136 extends upwardly through a flexible sheath 140 into engagement with the swinging handle 108 in any suitable manner, the upper end of the sheath 140 being mounted by an appropriate bracket 142. In this manner, as the handle 108 is swung so as to discharge the beer into a suitable receptacle, the flap 132 is simultaneously tilted upwardty so as to effect an upward movement of the gas container or can 124 against the abutment retained discharge end 126, this in turn resulting in a simultaneous discharge of gas into the keg 100 in con junction with the dispensing of the beer. A return of the handle 108, either automatically or manually, releases the pressure on the cable 136, or in fact effects a physical reverse movement of the cable 136 which, in conjunction with the conventional internal cut-off spring provided in the discharge head 126 of the aerosol type can 124, shuts off the discharging gas. If so desired, the lower end of the cylinder 122 can be provided with inwardly directed opposed shoulder-like portions 144 which terminate short of the centrally located flap or panel 132 so as to not interfere with the free movement thereof, while at the same time act so as to retain the can 124 within the cylinder 122.
Another important aspect of the invention resides in the use of a low vapor pressure gas such as Freon 115 (chloropentafluoroethane), Freon C-318 (octafluorocyclobutane), or a blend thereof. Freon 0318 will develop a vapor pressure of approximately 7 p.s.i.g. at the desired dispensing temperature of beer, approximately 38 F., while Freon 115 will develop a slightly higher vapor pressure, although a vapor pressure which will still be considered a low pressure. As such, by utilization of C-3l8 or a blend of C-3l8 and 115, the vapor pressure in the head space of the beer keg can be easily maintained at the desired level of approximately 10 to 14 p.s.i.g. at normal dispensing temperature.
This use of low vapor pressure gas eliminates the necessity of the heretofore required high strength metal tanks or kegs, pressure regulating means, blowout plugs, and the like which contribute significantly to the cost and weight of the container. In the instant invention, on the contrary, it is contemplated that the keg, even when utilized for beer, be constructed of plastic, for example a high density ethylene copolymer such as M-525, a Marlex plastic manufactured by Phillips Petroleum Company. In this manner, an inexpensive structurally stable unit is produced which makes the home consumption of draft beer more economically and practically feasible. Incidently, it should be appreciated that the materials used should of course be impermeable to the gas as well as inert to beer or any other fluids which are to be stored in and dispensed from the container.
The foregoing is considered as illustrative only of the principles of the invention. Further, since numerous modifications and changes will readily occur to those skilled in the art, it is not desired to limit the invention to the exact construction and operation shown and described, and accordingly all suitable modifications and equivalents may be resorted to, falling within the scope of the invention as claimed.
What is claimed as new is as follows:
1. For use in conjunction with a sealed liquid container, dispensing apparatus for selectively pressurizing the liquid in and dispensing the liquid from the container, said apparatus including a base, said base including inner and outer sides, mounting means on said base for mounting said base on the container in communication with the interior thereof, a liquid passage completely through said base from the outer to the inner side thereof, a dispensing spigot mounted on the outer side in communication with the liquid passage for selective discharge of liquid therethrough, and a gas container chamber on the base laterally spaced from the liquid passage and opening on the inner side thereof, a gas container mounted within said chamber, abutment means on the open end of said chamber for positioning and retaining the gas container therein, said gas container including movement actuatable discharge means, actuator means extending into said gas container chamber through the second end thereof, and handle means on said dispensing spigot for effecting a selected opening of the spigot and a simultaneous movement of said actuator means to cause relative movement of the movement actuatable discharge means on the gas container.
2. The apparatus of claim 1 including a gas receiving expansible bag sealed to the gas container chamber in gas receiving relation thereto.
3. The apparatus of claim 2 wherein said actuator means includes an elongated rod slidably received through said base in alignment with said chamber, said rod including an enlarged contact head on the inner end thereof engageable with the gas container.
4. The apparatus of claim 3 wherein said actuator means rod includes an enlarged head on the outer end thereof positioned for selective engagement by the spigot handle upon the movement thereof to the dispensing position.
5. In combination, a beverage container, a dispensing spigot mounted in operative relation on said container for the selective discharge of beverage therefrom, handle means on said spigot for the control thereof, a gas container, means mounting said gas container on said bever age container, said gas container including discharge means, actuator means associated with said gas container for selectively operating said discharge means, means communicating the gas container discharge means with the interior of the beverage container, means engaged between the spigot handle and the actuator means for effecting a discharge of the gas simultaneously with a discharge of the beverage, said spigot being mounted on an enlarged base, an enlarged opening through one end of said beverage container, means mounting said base over said opening with the spigot communicating with the interior of the beverage container therethrough, said means mounting the gas container comprising an enlarged chamber fixed to said base and projecting longitudinally into said beverage container, said gas: container being received within said chamber, said chamber having an open inner end, and cap means selectively closing the inner end of said chamber.
References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 366,237 7/1887 Morris 222399 706,423 8/1902 Kleinfeldt 222399 824,249 6/1906 Kleinfeldt 222399 851,758 4/1907 Kauffman 23'9-373 X 1,920,165 8/1933 Andvig 239373 X 2,894,478 7/1959 Reed et al. 239-309' X 2,973,885 3/1961 Ferguson 222-399 3,063,841 11/1962 Ash 222399 X 3,072,487 1/1963 Webster 222394 X 3,150,050 9/1964 Safrin et al 222394 X 3,244,326 4/1966 Bull 2223865 X 3,294,271 12/ 1966 Armbruster 2205 3,294,289 12/1966 Bayne et a1 222386.5 X
ROBERT B. REEVES, Primary Examiner.