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Publication numberUS3454186 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJul 8, 1969
Filing dateJul 5, 1968
Priority dateJul 5, 1968
Publication numberUS 3454186 A, US 3454186A, US-A-3454186, US3454186 A, US3454186A
InventorsRobert Richard Melone
Original AssigneeIllinois Tool Works
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Closure device
US 3454186 A
Abstract  available in
Images(1)
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

July 8, 1969 R. R. MELONE CLOSURE DEVICE Filed July 5, 1968 United States Patent 01 fice 3,454,186 Patented July 8, 1969 US. Cl. 220-60 10 Claims ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE The present invention relates generally to closure devices adapted for simultaneously covering a plurality of openings as for example a plurality of openings in a storage battery. The present application discloses a closure device which includes a one-piece section providing a plate-like base portion which carries a plurality of hollow plug portions, each plug portion having a shank accommodating aperture in the lower extremity thereof. A second complementary plate-like section has a plurality of depending shank elements, the free extremities of said shank portions being adapted for interlocking association with the material defining the apertures in a complementary plug portion. The plate-like sections are adapted to pressure sealed along their contacting peripheral surfaces and a vent is provided which communicates with the space within the two sections.

It is common practice to employ closure members for the openings in batteries which consist of individual threaded plugs adapted to be received by complementary threaded openings in the top of the battery case. The present invention contemplates elimination of such threaded closures and the provision of a closure device which will make it possible to simultaneously close or open a plurality of apertures in a container such as a battery casing by means of a single unit as distinguished from the independent threaded closure plugs referred to above. In other words, the invention contemplates the provision of an improved gang-type closure arrangement in which a plurality of closure members may be manipulated as a single or unitary device.

It is an object of the present invention to provide a closure device of the type set forth above, which is extremely practical in construction and which lends itself for economical production by the practice of conventional plastic molding methods.

The foregoing, and other objects and advantages, will be more apparent from the following detailed description when considered in connection with the accompanying drawing, wherein:

FIG. 1 is a fragmentary perspective view of the upper portion of a storage battery equipped with a closure device of the type contemplated by the present invention;

FIG. 2 is an enlarged vertical sectional view taken substantially along the line 22 of FIG. 1;

FIG. 3 is a plan view of the device as shown in FIG. 2, with a portion of the closure device broken away to discloses structures hidden, said view being taken substantially along the line 3-3 of FIG. 2;

FIG. 4 is an enlarged transverse sectional view of the lower section of the closure device and the complementary upper section, with the shank element thereof shown in approaching relation with respect to the shank accommodating aperture at the lower extremity of the hollow plug portion;

FIG. 5 is a view similar to FIG. 4, and taken substantially along the line 5--5 of FIG. 3, showing the parts in assembled relation and disclosing both the lower and upper portions of the closure member in transverse section; and

FIG. 6 is an enlarged fragmentary sectional view of the left-hand portion of the device as shown in FIG. 5, more clearly to illustrate the manner in which the lower section of the closure member is provided with a resilient lip or protuberance adapted to be sealingly engaged by a complementary marginal or peripheral surface of the upper section.

Referring now to the drawing more in detail, wherein like numerals have been employed to designate similar parts throughout the various figures, it will be seen that a closure device representative of one embodiment of the present invention is designated generally by the numeral 10. In FIG. 1, the closure device 10 is shown in operative association with a conventional storage battery designated generally by the numeral 12. The storage battery 12 includes a conventional housing or casing 14, the upper closure wall of which is provided with three openings 16.

The present invention, as previously mentioned, is concerned primarily with the provision of an improved closure device whereby the aforesaid three openings 16 may be opened or closed without the necessity of individually removing or applying the heretofore conventional storage individual battery caps or plugs. To this end, the present invention contemplates the provision of the closure device 10. The closure device 10 is shown in operative association with a storage battery 12. The battery 12 includes the usual case or container 14, the upper Wall of which is provided with openings 16, which would normally accommodate individual closure plugs or caps (not shown). The closure device 10 is comprised of an upper section 18 and a complementary lower section 20.

The lower section 20 includes a plate-like portion 22 and a plurality of depending hollow plug elements or members 24 formed integral with the plate-like portion 22. The periphery of each of the depending plug portions 24 is slightly tapered as shown to facilitate insertion and sealing impingement with the internal surface of a complementary opening 16 and with an annular sealing flange 25 located toward an inner end of the opening 16. The lower extremity of each of the plug elements 24 is provided with a shank accommodating aperture 26, which aperture is defined by an annular flange 28 (FIG. 4). The outer margin or periphery of the plate-like portion 22 is formed with an upstanding flange 30. The upper margin of the flange 30 is preferably thickened and recessed at 32 to receive the complementary margin of the upper closure section 18 in a manner about to be described. It will sufiicc at this point to note that a continuous marginal. lip or protuberance 34 is provided, the upper extremity of which is of sutficient reduced cross-section to render it yieldable in response to pressure exerted downwardly against said lip and thereby provide effective sealing engagement with the upper section 18.

The upper section 18 includes a plate-like portion 36, the periphery of which is shaped to be accommodated by the previously mentioned marginal recess 32 provided in the lower closure section 20. Thus the periphery of the plate-like portion 36 may be snugly accommodated by the recess 32 and the underside of the plate may be pressed into sealing engagement with the aforesaid reduced crosssectional portion of the lip or protuberance 34. The platelike portion 36 also supports a plurality of depending shank elements 38. Each shank 38 is complemental with one of the hollow plug portions 24 and the lower extremity of each shank is provided with shoulders 40 adapted to be forced into underlying interlocking association with a complementary flange 28 as clearly shown in FIGS. 2, 4 and 5. Each shank element 36 is cruciform in cross-section, thus providing four circumferentially spaced shoulders 40 for interlocking with the underside of a complementary flange 28.

From the foregoing description it will be understood that each of the closure sections 18 and 20 may be molded in one piece by practicing conventional plastic molding methods. Attention is also directed to the provision of a vent 42 which extends outwardly from the flange 30 of the lower section 20. This vent communicates with the space or area defined by the combined upper and lower sections 18 and 20 respectfully. It will also be noted that due to the cruciform shape of each of the shank elements, openings 44 at the point where the shoulders 40 interlock with the flanges 28 permit gases from within the battery 12 to pass upwardly between the shank walls and ultimately through the vent 42.

It has been found practical to produce closure devices of the type contemplated by the present invention from suitable plastic material possessing firm resilient characteristics. Thus as the shank members are telescopically associated with the hollow plugs carried by the lower closure section, the flanges 28 will yield to permit passage of the shank shoulders 40 through the apertures 26. Because of the inherent resiliency of the combined closure sections, the shoulders 40 may be moved sufficiently to clear the inner margin of the flanges 28 whereby to permit such flanges to spring back into firm interlocking engagement with said shoulders, the margins of the plate-like members 22 and 36 being yieldably clamped together. The engagement of the underside of the margin of upper plate-like section 36 with the relatively thin edge of the lips or protuberances 34 will cause an effective seal along this peripheral area. In the drawing, the apertures 16 of the battery 12 are disclosed as being related to the shape of the plugs so as to obtain sealing engagement around only axially limited portions of the plugs whereby to facilitate insertion and removal.

By using closure devices of the type described herein, the condition or level of the liquid within a battery may be examined by simply lifting the entire unit 10, thereby uncovering simultaneously the three openings in the battery case. Also, the design of the above-described closure device is of such a nature as to make it possible to produce such closures very economically. The lightness in weight and firm resilience of the closure structure are such as to make the device extremely practical in use as well as economical to produce. Obviously the closure device contemplated hereby is not limited for use with storage batteries, but has a very practical application in any instance wherein a plurality of apertures will accommodate a closure device which may be manually manipulated as a unitary structure.

While for purposes of disclosure one structural embodiment of the present invention has been described herein, it will be understood that other modifications and changes may be made without departing from the spirit and scope of the appended claims.

The invention is claimed as follows:

1. A unitary closure device for a plurality of openings, as for example, a plurality of openings in a storage battery, including a one piece section of electrically nonconductive material providing a plate-like base portion, a plurality of hollow plug portions formed integral with and depending from said base portion, each of said plug portions having a shank accommodating aperture at the lower extremity thereof, a second one piece plate-like section forming a counterpart of said first-mentioned section, said second section supporting a plurality of depending shank elements, each of said shank elements being complementary with one of said plug portions and having a lower extremity adapted for interlocking association with the lower apertured plug extremity, and means for sealing the peripheral margins of said sections in response to pressures tending to urge said margins into engagement with each other.

2. A closure device for a plurality of openings as set forth-in claim 1, wherein vent means is provided which communicates with the space enclosed by said first and second sections.

3. A unitary closure device for a plurality of openings as set forth in claim 1, wherein the means for sealing peripheral margins of the sections includes a peripheral protuberance which is yieldable in response to pressures in a direction substantially parallel to the axis of the shank elements.

4. A unitary closure device for a plurality of openings as set forth in claim 1, wherein the means for sealing the peripheral margins of said sections includes a peripheral lip on one section adapted to be engaged by the other section.

5. A closure device for a plurality of openings as set forth in claim 1, wherein the lower extremity of each plug portion in the vicinity of the shank accommodating aperture thereof is axially resilient.

6. A closure device for a plurality of openings as set forth in claim 1, wherein the entering extremity of each shank element is provided with shoulder means for interlocking with the material of a complementary plug portion which defines the shank accommodating aperture.

7. A closure device for a plurality of openings as set forth in claim 1, wherein the peripheral surface of each plug portion gradually decreases in diameter toward its entering extremity.

8. A closure device for a plurality of openings as set forth in claim 1, wherein the shank element in the vicinity of the entering end thereof is cruciform in cross-sectional shape.

9. A closure device for a plurality of openings as set forth in claim 1, wherein the first-mentioned section is provided with a peripheral recess for receiving the complementary peripheral margin of the second section.

10. A combination comprising a closure device as defined in claim 1 and a storage battery case, said case having a plurality of top opening means corresponding in number and arrangement to and removably receiving said plug portions, and said case including an annular flange projecting and frictionally and sealingly engaging an associated plug portion.

References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 3,392,660 7/1968 Favre 220-29 JAMES B. MARBERT, Primary Examiner.

U.S. Cl. X.R. 2J2029

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3392660 *Jun 3, 1963Jul 16, 1968Agriculture UsaFood processing apparatus
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3604588 *Mar 6, 1969Sep 14, 1971Herman WinnickCan cover and sealer
US4170094 *Feb 27, 1978Oct 9, 1979Rohm GmbhClosure for double-walled webbed structures
US5458676 *Apr 28, 1994Oct 17, 1995Alliedsignal Truck Brake Systems CompanyPressure differential control valve for compressed air system
US7909204Mar 3, 2008Mar 22, 2011Sonoco Development, Inc.Resealing overcap for a container
US20090218351 *Mar 3, 2008Sep 3, 2009Antal Sr Keith EResealing overcap for a container
EP0090570A2 *Mar 18, 1983Oct 5, 1983General Motors CorporationVenting system for electric storage battery
EP0090570A3 *Mar 18, 1983Nov 21, 1985General Motors CorporationVenting system for electric storage battery
Classifications
U.S. Classification429/175, 220/787
International ClassificationH01M2/12
Cooperative ClassificationH01M2/1217, Y02E60/12
European ClassificationH01M2/12B2C