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Publication numberUS3451120 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJun 24, 1969
Filing dateMar 17, 1966
Priority dateMar 17, 1966
Publication numberUS 3451120 A, US 3451120A, US-A-3451120, US3451120 A, US3451120A
InventorsAlbert M Herzig, Benjamin David Menkin
Original AssigneeAlbert M Herzig, Menkin Benjamin D
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Method and apparatus for making automatic closure for squeeze containers
US 3451120 A
Abstract  available in
Images(4)
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

June 24'; 1969 A. M. HERZIG ET AL 3, METHOD AND APPARATUS FOR MAKING AUTOMATIC CLOSURE FOR SQUEEZE CONTAINERS Filed March 17, 1966 Jun 24, 1969 A. M. HERZIG ETAL 3,451,120 METHOD AND APPARATUS FOR MAKING AUTOMATIC CLOSURE FOR 4 SQUEEZE COMTAINERS Filed March 17, 1966 Sheet 5 014 June 24, 1969 A. M. HERZIG ETAL 3,451,120

METHOD AND APPARATUS FOR MAKING AUTOMATIC CLOSURE FOR SQUEEZE CONTAINERS Filed March 17, 1966 Sheet 3 of 4 June 24, 1969 A. M. HERZIG ETAL 3,451,120

METHOD AND APPARATUS FOR MAKING AUTOMATIC CLOSURE FOR SQUEEZE CONTAINERS Filed March 17, 1966 Sheet 4 of 4 United States Patent 3,451 120 METHOD AND APPARATUS FOR MAKING AUTO- MATIC CLOSURE FOR SQUEEZE CONTAINERS Albert M. Herzig, 9465 Wilshire Blvd. 90212, and Benjamin David Menkin, 11408 Francis Place 90066, both of Los Angeles, Calif.

Filed Mar. 17, 1966, Ser. No. 535,111 Int. Cl. B23p 11/02; 365d 39/00 U.S. Cl. 29446 Claims This invention relates to the art of automatic closures for squeeze containers, such as particularly, collapsible tubes and the like. The automatic closure for the squeezable container is of a type comprising a flattened neck made of resilient material and constructed to normally close to retain the contents of the container, but to be capable of automatically opening to release contents of the container as a result of pressure developed from squeezing the container. Automatic closures of this type are shown and described in my previous Patents Nos. 2,753,091 and 2,815,150.

The method herein involved is one for making automatic closures of the type shown in the previous patents, with the additional feature that in the process of manufacture a positive lateral stretch is applied to the resilient neck, the stretch being held in the neck by the stiffening member that is clamped to it.

As pointed out in the previous patents, closures of the type described therein have many advantages over previously known prior art types of closures. The primary object of this invention is to provide improved means for making or manufacturing automatic closures of this type and to generally provide improvements in methods of making devices heretofore intended for similar purposes. In the preferred form of the invention, the method is carried out by machinery which is largely automatic and whereby the closures can be economically, effectively and rapidly manufactured in large quantities, as will be made clear in the description provided hereinafter.

The invention is described herein in a preferred form as applied to a resilient container preferably formed of a material of the nature of an elastomer, such as polyethylene, polyvinyl or rubbery material. The invention may, however, be practiced with respect to containers made of other materials and having other shapes. In a preferred form of the invention, the closures are fabricated from stock which is originally in the form of plastic tubing. The automatic closure is made or manufactured by the execution of a series of processing steps with respect to the original stock. Briefly, the stock is flattened; the sides of an end part are heat sealed together leaving an intermediate unsealed area, which becomes the openable closure; holes are punched on opposite sides of the intermediate area; the legs of a stiffening member in the form of a staple are inserted through the holes the neck is laterally stretched transversely at the area of the holes; the legs of the staple are clamped in the side portions of the neck; the clamped neck is then bowed; and the material around the formed automatic closure is cutaway and removed to complete the automatic neck closure. It is an object of the invention to provide the method comprised of the aforesaid steps, whereby completion of the automatic closure is realized.

It is another object of the invention to provide improved automatic machinery for carrying out the process. The flattening, heat sealing and punching of tubular stock many he performed using simplified types of fixtures or processing devices. The stretching and clamping of the neck in stretched condition is somewhat more complicated. An object of the invention is to provide a fixture or device for performing the stretching and clamping steps in the process of fabricating the automatic closures. Preferably, this fixture takes the form of pairs of jaws arranged to cooperate with anvils for gripping side portions of the neck and movable to laterally stretch the neck. Preferably, the jaw assemblies are cam operated by way of cam surfaces formed on a movable head. The stiffening means, in the form of a staple, is in place while the neck is being stretched. The said fixture embodies additional means for automatically clamping the legs of the staple so as to clamp and hold the neck in stretched condition. It is a further object of the invention to provide novel and improved mechanism as described for performing the stretching and clamping steps of the process.

Further objects and additional advantages of the invention will become apparent from the following detailed description and annexed drawings wherein:

FIGURE 1 is a perspective view of the original tubular stock;

FIGURE 2 is a view illustrating the heat sealing of an end part of the tubular stock;

FIGURE 3 illustrates the step of punching holes in the tubular stock and providing a score line across the unsealed opening area.

FIGURE 4 is a view illustrating the placement of the staple in the punched holes;

FIGURES 5 and 6 are diagrammatic views illustrating the step of clamping the stiffening staple to the stretched neck;

FIGURE 7 is a diagrammatic view of the clamped neck with the excess material cutaway;

FIGURE 8 is a a diagrammatic view illustrating the bowing of the clamped automatic closure;

FIGURE 9 is a perspective view of a squeezable container having the automatic closure of the invention embodied therein;

FIGURE 10 is a front view of the automatic mechanism or fixture for performing the stretching and clamping steps of the process;

FIGURE 11 is a view similar to that of FIGURE 10 with the parts in another position;

FIGURE 12 is a view like FIGURES 10 and 11 with the parts in a further advanced position;

FIGURE 13 is a partial view showing the clamping or setting of the staple relative to the neck;

FIGURE 14 is a sectional view taken along a plane through the center of the fixture of FIGURES 10, 11 and 13; and

FIGURE 15 is a perspective view of the fixture or device for performing the stretching and clamping steps.

Referring now more particularly to FIGURE 1 of the drawing, this figure designates the original tube stock which may comprise suitable material as referred to in the foregoing, which may be in the nature of an elastomer such as polyethylene, polyvinyl or rubbery material. The tubular stock is flattened in any suitable manner and then portions of the flat sides are heat sealed together in an area as shown at 12 in FIGURE 2, leaving an intermediate extending portion 13 between heat sealed areas; this intermediate portion becomes the automatic openable closure. FIGURE 3 represents a further step in the process wherein holes or openings 15 and 16 are punched through the sealed stock on opposite sides of the intermediate area 13 as shown.

FIGURE 4 shows the stiffening member in the form of a staple 24 in place with its legs 25 and 26 inserted through the holes or openings 15 and 16. FIGURES 5 and 6 illustrate a clamping die in which the heat sealed neck part of the tube stock is placed for stretching and clamping of the staple or stiffening member 24. The die shown in FIGURES 5 and 6 comprises anvil plate 29 and a movable clamping die member 30 having a depression 31. The member 30 is moved upwardly as will be described presently, while the neck portion 12 is stretched laterally. The legs of the staple are clamped into the position as shown in FIGURE 6 so that the intermediate portion 33 of the neck is held stretched laterally by the stiffening member or staple 24.

FIGURE 7 shows the container and automatic closure in substantially completed state. FIGURE 9 shows the container and automatic closure completed. In FIGURES 7 and 9 the container is designated at 40. In FIGURE 7 parts of the sealed area 12 have been cut away as shown. At one end of the container are heat sealed areas 43 and 44 which were part of the original heat sealed area 12 and at the other end of the container is a heat sealed area 46.

After the steps of FIGURES 5, 6 and 7, the neck portion of the container is placed in another die havin a configuration as shown at 35 in FIGURE 8. The clamped neck portion is bowed as shown in FIGURE 8 by means of a plunger stem 36 that moves towards the die 35, which has depression or recess 37 and the secondary recess 38 into which the neck is bowed.

The openable closure is designated at 13 being an unsealed area between the lips of the neck 33 which are held laterally stretched as described and which are held stretched and bowed by the staple or stiffening member 24. The material of the lip at the unsealed area 13 which is farthest from the staple 24 is able to bow out or flex as the result of pressure generated by squeezing the contained 40 to allow material from the container to be discharged or ejected. Upon termination of squeezing when pressure is not being generated, the lips again come together to form a closure as the result of the lateral tensioning and because of the neck being bowed by the staple 24.

Briefly, summarizing the steps of the process as so far described, the steps include the flattening of the tube stock; the forming of the transverse heat sealed area; the punching of the holes for the stiffening staple, placing the legs of the staple in the holes; the transverse stretching and the clamping of the neck; the removal of the excess material along the score lines; and the bowing of the clamping staple. Aside from the stretching and clamping steps, the other steps can be performed by simplified and known devices and these steps may be done at a single station or at a plurality of stations. A particular novel and unique fixture is provided, however, for performing the stretching and clamping steps as described in the foregoing. The purpose of this fixture or device is to make it possible to automate this part of the process to facilitate the economical and effective manufacture of large numbers of automatic closures rapidly. FIGURES to 15, inclusive, illustrate a preferred form of the fixture or tool for performing the stretching and clamping steps. This fixture .is designated generally by the numeral 50 and is shown in perspective in FIGURE 15. It comprises a base member 51 having a first pair of channel members 53 and 54 having inwardly turned channels or grooves 56 and 57 which form ways for a sliding block 60. At the other end of the base 51 is a second pair of channel members, one of which may be seen at 62 having an internal channel or groove 63. The second pair of channel members forms ways for a second sliding block 65. The block 60 has a base providing extending lateral webs 67 and 68 which are received in sliding engagement with the channels 56 and 57. The base of the sliding block 65 similarly has extending webs at the bottom, one of which may be seen at 70 and these webs are slidable in the ways formed by the other pair of members, one of which is designated by the numeral 62.

Positioned between the sliding blocks 60 and 65 in a position transverse thereto is a generally rectilinear member 72. This member has a bottom part 73 which rests on the base 51 in a position between the sliding members or blocks 60 and 65. This m mb r has a front 75 4 face 74 having a central outstanding projection 76 forming square shoulders adjacent to flat top surfaces 78 and 79 adjacent thereto, see FIGURE 15. Movement of the sliding blocks 60 and 65 is limited by stop screws as shown at 80 and 81, which come into an engagement with the sides of the member 72 at the bottom thereof.

Attached to the sliding block 60 is a member 84 having spaced inwardly extending parts 85 and 85' which straddle the lower part of the front face plate 29 of the member 72. The members 85 and 85 form anvils cooperating with movable jaws as will be described. Numeral designates a similar member carried by the sliding block 65 and having spaced inwardly extending parts 91 and 91' which form anvils cooperating with another set of movable jaws as will be described.

The block 60 has a transverse bore through which extends a shaft 95. On one end of this shaft adjacent to the block 60 is a lever arm 96 in the form of a jaw. The member 96 has an inwardly extending bifurcated part having bifurcations 98 and 99 and at the ends of these bifurcations are formed teeth as shown at 101 for the bifurcation 98. On the other end of the shaft on the other side of the block 60 is another arm 103 at an angle to the arm 96 so that a bell crank lever is formed. The lever 103 has an extending cylindrical projection 104 which forms a cam follower as will be described presently for operating the jaw 96.

Numeral 96 designates a similar jaw on the other side of the fixture on the end of a shaft 95 extending through a transverse bore in the sliding block 65. The jaw 96' extends inwardly and is like the jaw 96 and its parts are identified by similar numerals primed, see FIGURE 15. On the other end of the shaft 95' is an arm 103 which is like the arm 103 and which similarly has an extending cylindrical projection 104' which also forms a cam follower. As will be described presently, the arms 103 and 103 operate simultaneously to operate the jaws 96 and 96 in relation to the anvils 85 and 91. Member 72 has a transverse bore 105 in which is a coil spring 106 which is secured to a pin 107 extending from arm 103 and to a similar pin extending from arm 103'. The spring tends to pull arms 103 and 103 toward each other.

The block 60 has a transverse bore 110 and the block 6'5 has a similar bore. Positioned in these bores and extending through the front opening 111 in the member 72, is a coil spring 112 as may be seen in FIGURE 14, the ends of which are suitably secured respectively to the blocks 60 and 65 and tend to pull these blocks inwardly towards the center member 72.

As described in the foregoing in connection with FIG- URES 5 and 6, movable die means are provided for clamping the legs of the staple 24 against the neck 33. Between member 72 and the plate 74 is the movable die member 30 having a central rectangular depression 31 as may be seen in FIGURE 10. This die cooperates with an upper fixed anvil plate 29 on the front of the member 72, and as described in connection with FIGURES 5 and 6 and the legs of the staple 24 are clamped between the die member 117 and the plate 29.

At the center front part of the member 72, there is an opening or space 122. Extending transversely in this space is a shaft 123 and journalled on this shaft is an actuating lever having a shape as shown at 124 in FIGURE 14. The level 124 has an extending toe 126 which extends through an opening in the plate into a position below the center part of the movable die 30 which slides between the plates 74 and 115. The other end of the lever 124 is bifurcated having extending legs and 125' which straddle the end of a plunger 132 and have end slots 127 and 127'. The member 72 has a vertical bore 130 midway between its sides. The lower end of this bore is tapered and connects with a bore of smaller diameter 131 which connects with the space 122. Positioned in the bores 130 and 131 is the plunger 132 having a transverse end pin 133 engaging in the slots 127 and 127 in the bifurcated end of the lever 124. The stem 132 has an enlarged head 136. The head 136 on the plunger 132 is engageable with the end of a screw 140 which extends from the transverse member 141 forming part of a vertically movable head designated generally by the numeral 143, see FIGURES 1 and 15'. The vertically movable head has a back plate 145 having downwardly extending cam legs 146 and 147 which straddle the member 72 as shown in FIGURE 15. The outside surfaces of the legs 146 and 147 are bevelled as shown at 150 and 151 to form cam surfaces engageable respectively with the projections 104 and -104 on the lever arms 103 and 103. It will be understood that the head 143 is caused to move vertically up and down and this movement is preferably automated and may be realized in a desired way.

In operation, as the head 143 descends, as illustrated in FIGURES and 11, the cam surfaces 150 and 151 engage the projections 104 and 104 moving the levers 103 and 103' outwardly against the force of spring 106. This rotates the shafts 95 and 95 in a direction to move the jaws 98, 98', 99 and 99 upwardly towards the anvils 85, 85', 91 and 91. In this manner, the neck closure being formed is clamped between the anvils and jaws as may be seen in FIGURES 11, 12 and 13. Upon continued downward movement of the head 143, when the jaws 96 and 96 become closed on the neck being fabricated as described, the action of surfaces 150 and 15-1 of head 43 acting on the projections 104 and 104' causes the sliding blocks 60 and 65 to slide outwardly with respect to the center member 72 against the force of spring 112. The neck portion which is grasped by the jaws is now stretched laterally, the stretching including the portion between the legs 25 and 26 of the staple 2 4. The stretching continues until the vertical end surfaces 152 and 153 of the head 143 engage the projections 104 and 104'. As the head 143 continues downwardly, the screw 140 on transverse member -141 engages the head 136 of plunger 132 forcing it downwardly. This rotates lever 124 around its shaft 123. Its end part engages the bottom of die plate 30 moving it upwardly until its upper parts adjacent to the center depression 31 engage the legs 25 and 26 of the staple 24 as shown in FIGURES 10, 11 and 12 and as the member 30 continues upwardly the legs 25 and 26 of the staple 24 are clamped against the surfaces of the neck 33 as may be seen in FIGURE 13. Preferably, the upper portions 154 and 155 of the die 30 have depressions as shown which receive the legs 25 and 26 of the staple causing them to be clamped in the manner shown in FIGURE 13.

Upon upward movement of the head 143, the plunger 132 is released and the die 30 moves downwardly away from the clamped staple 24. As the head 143 moves upwardly, the sliding blocks 60 and 65 are allowedto move back together and the jaws 96 and 96 move to release position so that the neck within the fixture is released and can be removed therefrom for performing further steps of the process.

The entire process will next be briefly summarized. First, the steps are carried out in sequence as described in connection with FIGURES 1, 2, 3 and 4. The neck with the staple 24 in place is then inserted in the fixture as shown in FIGURES 10 to 15. The fixture is then operated in the manner described in detail above to clamp the lateral side portions of the neck portion 33 and to stretch it, and to clamp on the staple with the neck in stretched condition, and then to release the clamp and stretched neck and staple. The neck portion with the staple clamping it is then placed in a separate die as shown in FIG- URE 7 and bowed by means of the plunger 36. The excess material may then be torn away along the score lines as previously described completing the finished article as shown in FIGURE 9.

Those skilled in the art will observe that the process as described in the foregoing achieves an extremely effective but economical and eflicient automatic closure which is of the type which automatically opens upon pressure resulting from squeezing the container, and automatically closes when the pressure is released. The automatic closure comprises only adjacent lip portions of the material of the neck which are not sealed together and the clamping or stiffening member which holds the neck portions laterally stretched. The process comprises relatively simple steps making it possible to simply, effectively and economically fabricate the automatic closures rapidly and in quantity. The fixture or device, FIGURES 10 and 15, is constructed to be very sturdy, effective, and reliable for its purpose, the desired stretching and clamping steps coming about merely as a result of the vertical up and down movement of the head.

From the foregoing those skilled in the art will observe that the invention as described herein achieves and realizes all of the objects and advantages as set forth in the foregoing as well as having many additional advantages that are apparent from the detailed description.

The foregoing disclosure is representative of a preferred form of the invention and is to be interpreted in an illustrative rather than a limiting sense, the invention to be accorded the full scope of the claims appended hereto.

What is claimed is:

1. The method of making a tube closure comprising forming a flattened neck of resilient material having contiguous lip portions separable from each other to provide a discharge opening, stretching said neck laterally and securing a rigid member across the neck to hold it in stretched condition whereby the said contiguou lip portions serve as an openable discharge, the said lip portions being capable of being flexed apart by fluid pressure.

2. A method as in claim 1, wherein the rigid member is secured only at opposite side parts of said neck.

3. A method as in claim 1, wherein the step of securing the rigid member across the neck includes forming the rigid member as a staple having legs, positioning the staple with legs on opposite sides of the said neck and clamping the said legs against side portions of the neck while the neck is stretched laterally so the staple holds it in stretched condition.

4. A method as in claim 1, wherein the step of forming said neck includes flattening a tubular sleeve, sealing flat sides of the sleeve together at the end transversely, leaving an intermediate unsealed area to provide a discharge opening, punching holes through the sealed area on opposite sides of the said intermediate area, and wherein the step of securing the rigid member across the neck includes the legs of a staple through the holes, stretching the said sleeve laterally along the length of the staple and clamping the legs of the staple against portions of the sleeve adjacent the holes so that the staple holds a portion of the sleeve including the intermediate unsealed area in stretched condition.

5. Apparatus for producing an automatic closure neck from flexible resilient material comprising a fixture having a pair of movable jaws, fixed anvils with which the jaws cooperate, means for closing the jaws to grasp side portions of a flattened closure neck made of resilient material placed in the fixture, means for moving the jaws and anvils in the fixture for laterally stretching the said neck, said fixture embodying means movable towards the said flattened neck for clamping a rigid member to the said neck for holding it is stretched condition.

6. An apparatus as in claim 5 including a pair of pivoted bell crank levers, said jaws being formed as one arm of each of the bell crank levers, said bell crank levers each having another arm having a cam follower, said fixture including a movable head having surfaces engageable with said carn followers, the said surfaces being configurated to rotate said bell crank levers to close said jaws against the anvils and to thereafter move the bell crank levers and anvils laterally to stretch the said neck.

7. Apparatus as in claim 6, including plunger means movable by said head after said neck has been stretched for operating said clamping means.

8. Apparatus as in claim 6, wherein two assemblies are provided each comprising one of said bell crank levers, its mounting and one of said anvils and means comprising transverse ways, said assemblies being mounted in said ways for lateral movement relative to the fixture.

9. Apparatus for making an automatic container closure neck, formed from a flattened sleeve of flexible resilient material, the sides of the sleeve being heat sealed together leaving an onsealed neck, comprising means for laterally stretching the material of said sleeve adjacent the neck, and means for securing a rigid member to areas at opposite sides of said stretched neck portion of said sleeve stretched condition,

10. Apparatus as in claim 9 wherein said stretching means comprises mechanism for grasping areas of the material at the sides of the neck and for moving outwardly to stretch the material and then to release after the material is secured.

References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 1/1925 Stanley 22764 X 2/1948 Gilas 227156 7/1956 Herzig 222--49l 12/1957 Herzig 222-491 X 6/1959 Little 25 l5 6/ 1959 Hirata 227-64 4/1967 Herzig 222491 CHARLIE T. MOON, Primary Examiner.

US. Cl. X.R.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US1521843 *Jul 9, 1921Jan 6, 1925Angel Int CorpApparatus for filling and sealing receptacles
US2436473 *May 22, 1947Feb 24, 1948Gilas Anthony DStapling machine
US2753091 *Jan 9, 1953Jul 3, 1956Herzig Albert MClosure for collapsible tubes
US2815150 *Apr 30, 1956Dec 3, 1957Herzig Albert MSqueeze container with tear opening and automatic closure
US2890855 *Jun 15, 1955Jun 16, 1959Little Robert KPinch valve
US2891250 *Oct 10, 1957Jun 23, 1959Hirata YasuhiroBronchus seaming instrument
US3315849 *Sep 15, 1965Apr 25, 1967Herzig Albert MClosure for collapsible tube
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3529338 *Aug 12, 1968Sep 22, 1970Aerosol Tech Research Center IMethod of making a dispensing valve for a pressurized container
US3699633 *Feb 25, 1971Oct 24, 1972Condes CorpMachine for making hanging file folders
US3848321 *Jul 16, 1973Nov 19, 1974Resistoflex CorpMethod of fabricating a constrictable tube valve element
US4932562 *Apr 29, 1988Jun 12, 1990Triparte, Ltd.Liquid dispensing system
US4988016 *Jan 30, 1989Jan 29, 1991James P. HawkinsSelf-sealing container
US6785947 *Mar 14, 2003Sep 7, 2004Georgia-Pacific Resins, Inc.Method of producing a core board product
US20030172517 *Mar 14, 2003Sep 18, 2003Georgia-Pacific Resins, Inc.Method of producing a core board product
US20030175479 *Mar 14, 2003Sep 18, 2003Georgia-Pacific Resins, Inc.Core board product
Classifications
U.S. Classification29/446, 156/91, 29/509, 222/491, 227/66, 228/139, 29/243.56
International ClassificationB29D23/20, B65D47/20
Cooperative ClassificationB29K2023/06, B29K2027/06, B29L2023/20, B29D23/20, B65D47/2037
European ClassificationB65D47/20E2B, B29D23/20