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Publication numberUS3518703 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJul 7, 1970
Filing dateFeb 27, 1968
Priority dateFeb 27, 1968
Publication numberUS 3518703 A, US 3518703A, US-A-3518703, US3518703 A, US3518703A
InventorsHaldopoulos Ioakim, Young Sherwood
Original AssigneeAmerican Standard Inc
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Plastic trip lever for water closets
US 3518703 A
Abstract  available in
Previous page
Next page
Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

y 1970 a. HALDOPOULOS L 3,518,703


jwum zwm ATTORNEY y 1970 I. HALDOPOULOS ET AL 3,518,703

PLASTIC TRIP LEVER FOR WATER CLOSETS Filed Feb. 27, 1968 5 Sheets-Sheet 2 Fig. 5. 32 34 INVENTOR. IOAKW HALDOPOULOS 33 S E WOOD you/vs ATTORNEY July 7, 1970 HALDOPQULQS ETAL 3,518,703

PLASTIC TRIP LEVER FOR WATER CLOSETS Filed Feb. 27, 1968 3 Sheets-Sheet 5 INVENTOR. IOA-KLM HALDOPOULOS SHERWOOD you/VG United States Patent 3,518,703 PLASTIC TRIP LEVER FOR WATER CLOSETS Ioakim Haldopoulos, Louisville, Ky., and Sherwood Young, MOIISOI], Mass, assignors to American Standard, Inc.. New York, N.Y., a corporation of Delaware Filed Feb. 27, 1968, Ser. No. 708,611 Int. Cl. E0311 /092 US. Cl. 467 5 Claims ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE position of a flush valve for releasing water from the flush tank into the toilet bowl. The mechanism includes a stud and nut combination for holding the handle at a small fixedspacing from the front of the flush tank. The handle has a pair of ribs which fit into a butterfly opening in the spud for enabling limited rotary motion of the handle. Except for the chain, all of the parts are made of plastic and they can be readily assembled, and as assembled, they may replace the normal trip lever mechanism installed on conventional flush tanks.

The invention relates to control devices and especially to control devices for plumbing fixtures such as flush tanks. More particularly, this invention relates to manually operated devices, such as trip lever devices, for controlling the flow of water from the flush tank of a water closet, sometimes called a toilet bowl.

Considerable efforts have been directed over the years toward the production of simple, inexpensive manually controllable trip lever mechanism free of metal and suitable for controlling the flow of water from the flush tank of a conventional toilet bowl. The desire was to have such a trip lever mechanism that would be readily installable on the users premises and particularly, a mechanism that could easily replace models of such trip lever mechanisms that have not operated satisfactorily.

Prior trip lever mechanism included a trip lever which was coupled through intricate metallic mechanism between a handle, usually positioned on the outside of the flush tank, and a flush valve which was mounted within the flush tank and was employed for controlling the fiow of water from the flush tank into the toilet bowl when this was desired. In prior arrangements, the mechanical coupling between the trip lever and the flush tank was often provided by an opening or hole in the trip lever through which a spring clip was inserted which, in turn, was connected to a lift chain. Because all of the parts of trip lever mechanisms were usually made of metal, they were quite expensive to manufacture. Hence, because of their cost, cheaper arrangements which were less etficient were often substituted and the cheaper mechanisms usually introduced maintenance, repair and replacement problems which were also expensive.

In accordance with the present invention, a new manually controllable trip lever mechanism of relatively simple construction and low cost is presented. The components of the mechanism, through made of plastic materials, are readily manufactured, assembled and installed and the assembled mechanism is readily substituted for other forms of trip lever mechanism installed and in use with conventional flush tanks. The two most important components of the mechanism, namely, the trip lever and the handle, are couple to each other so that they are integrated and operate in unison without relative angular displacement from each other. An externally threaded spud is positioned loosely on the hollow shaft of the handle and a nut is threaded against the spud to maintain the spud immovably atfixed against the flush tank. Thus, the handle is rotatable about its axis but, according to the construction of the spud, the angle of rotation of the handle is limited to a predetermined angular magnitude. This is accornplished by a butterfly cavity within the spud, the butterfly cavity being fitted over a webbed structure formed within the handle. The butterfly cavity permits only limited rotation of the webbed handle. Thus, by manually rotating the handle in one direction, say counterclockwise through a predetermined angle, the trip lever will be likewise rotated through the same angle about the axis of the handle and the flush valve will be opened so as to release water from the flush tank into the toilet bowl. On the other hand, when the flush valve is later returned to its closed position, the trip lever will rotate through a corresponding angle in a reversed direction, that is, clockwise, to return the handle to its original position. The above steps in the operation of the mechanism are well known; the novelty resides in the structural differences with respect to prior mechanisms.

This invention will be better understood from the more detailed description hereinafter following, when read in connection with the accompanying drawing in which the FIG. 1 shows a general perspective of a flush tank generally illustrating the lever mechanism for the control of the flush valve; FIG. 2 shows a perspective of the lever mechanism; FIG. 3 is a side elevational view of the lever mechanism in its assembled form; FIG. 4 is a side elevational view of the lever per se; FIG. 5 is a view of the lever of FIG. 4 taken from the lines 5-5 of FIG. 4; FIG. 6 depicts the rear or underside view of the handle; FIG. 7 shows a side elevational view of the handle when observed from lines 77 of FIG. 6; and FIGS. 8 and 9 show, respectively, side and end views of the spud, FIG. 8 being partly in cross-section. The same reference characters will be employed throughout the drawing to designate the same or similar parts.

Referring particularly to FIG. 1 of the drawing, the reference character 1 designates the flush tank, 2 its cover, 3 the handle of the lever mechanism, 4 the lever of the mechanism, 5 the flush valve, and 6 the pull chain which connects the flush valve 5 to the lever 4. The toilet bowl is conventionally positioned below the flush tank 1.

As is well known, the flush valve 5 controls the flow of water from the flush tank 1 into the toilet bowl and this is caused to take place by moving the handle 3 in a counterclockwise direction through a limited angle. The chain 6 is then pulled to operate the flush valve 5 so as to open the valve 5 to discharge water into the toilet bowl. As is also well known, the flush valve 5, the details of which are not shown nor described, is caused to return to its closed position and, at the same time, water is allowed to enter the tank; and the handle 3 and lever 4 will be return to their initial positions.

In the perspective drawing of FIG. 2, the handle 3 is shown coupled to the lever 4, the details of which will be shown and described in connection with other figures of the drawing. FIG. 2 also shows the spud 10 and the nut 20 and the spacing between nut 20 and the underside of the handle 3 will correspond to the thickness of the front wall of the water tank 1.

FIG. 3 shows a side view of the same parts as are indicated in FIG. 2, some of which are shown in crosssection. The lever 4 is preferably made of solid plastic material. One end of the lever 4 is fork-like in shape as shown also in FIGS. 2 and 4, the tines of which are designated 7 and 8, with an opening 9 provided in both tines 7 and 8 to accommodate a chain such as 6. The other end of the lever 4 is imbedded in the central opening of the handle 3 as seen in FIG. 3. The handle 3 as will be described in more detail hereinafter. One end of the spud 10 (see FIG. 8) is externally threaded to receive the internally threaded section of the nut 20'.

Referring more particularly to FIGS. 4 and 5, the other end of the lever 4 is shown to include four distinct ribs 31, 32, 33 and 34, which are equally spaced about a common axis. These ribs 31 to 34 are inserted into the central opening of the handle 3 and, when they are fully inserted in the handle 3, any appropriate adhesive will serve to hold the ribbed section 31 to 34 of lever 4 within the axial opening of the handle 3.

FIGS. 6 and 7 show the handle 3 in two different positions as already noted. The central opening 40 of the handle 3 represents the axis about which the handle 3 and the lever 4 rotate through equal but limited angles. 41 and 42 represent two colinear ribs on the underside of the handle 3, as shown in FIG. 6, and these ribs fit into a butterfly opening 51, 52 (see FIG. 9) in the spud 10. The two ribs 41 and 42 are relatively narrow, that is, they are narrower than the butterfly opening 51, 52 of the spud 10 which is always held stationary. Hence the handle 3 may revolve through a predetermined angle determined by the widths of the ribs 41 and 42 with respect to the widths of the butterfly opening 51-52. Two projections 45 and 46, shown in FIG. 6, serve to align the lever 4 with the handle 3 and these projections 45, 46 obviate any rotary motion of lever 4 with respect to handle 3.

The spud 10 embodies also four sides of the squared section 55 which can be conveniently fitted into the. front of the flush tank 1 which has a corresponding squared opening. One of the four sides is designated 53 in FIG. 8. The ribs 56 of the spud 10 serve to make good frictional contact with the respective side walls of the squared opening in the flush tank.

The spud 10 also embodies a threaded section 58 which meshes with the internal threads of the nut 20. It is observed that the lowermost segment 59 of the spud 10 is fiat and has no projection therefrom. This is a distinct feature; no axial projection of spud 10 is required to maintain the spud 10 and the lever 4 uniformly spaced from the front wall of the flush tank at all times.

One of the additional features of the lever mechanism of this invention relates to the opening 9 in relation to the two tines 7 and 8 at one end of lever 4 as is shown with particularity in FIG. 2. The opening 9 is such that a balled chain 6 of any well known construction may be conveniently fitted into opening 9 to retain the chain 6. Hence no knotting of the chain 6 is required, nor is a clip or other intermediate device, required; and the chain 6 may be readily inserted or removed whenever desired.

The handle 3, when affixed to the conventional water tank, such as 1, is so shaped that it will not interfere with the toilet seat when it is lain back, that is, when it is not in use. Any handle that is deeper, that is, a handle that extends further beyond the front wall of the water tank 1, will interfere with and limit the movement of the seat and hence the handle may become broken or marred by repeated physical contact therewith.

Another feature of the trip lever mechanism (see FIGS. 2 and 3) resides in its assembled configuration. The arrangement is so shaped that it may be easily inserted into the square hole opening of the conventional water tank 1. It is therefore feasible to install the lever mechanism at the point where the installation or replacement is to be performed'In other words, the lever mechanism may be completely assembled at the factory and then conveniently inserted through the square hole of the water tank 1 at the place of installation. The nut 20 may be tightened against the threads '58 of the spud 10 to hold spud in an immovable position against the tank 1. Therefore, the handle 3 and the lever 4, both of which are tied together, may be rotated as a unit in either direction about the axis of the handle.

While this invention has been shown and described in certain particular arrangements merely for the purpose of illustration, it will be understood that the general principles and features of this invention may be applied to other and Widely varied organizations without departing from the spirit of the invention or the scope of the appended claims.

What is claimed is:

1. An assembly for controlling the operation of a flush tank comprising a combination which includes a handle having a substantially circular tubular structure about the. center of which the handle may be rotated and having also two colinear ribs integrally formed within the underside of said handle, a lever having first and second ends and so formed that said ends are positioned at a right angle to each other, the first end of said lever being shaped for insertion into the tubular structure of the handle so that said first end will be retained therein and so that said lever and said handle may rotate equally as a unitary structure, the second end of said lever being forkshaped, the tines of which have an opening for receiving and holding a chain, and a stud having an opening which is larger than the tubular structure of the handle so that said stud may slide thereover and having also a butterfly opening within which the colinear ribs are positioned so as to limit the angular displacement of said handle and said lever.

2. An assembly according to claim 1 which also includes a nut, the stud including a threaded segment for meshing with the nut, thereby holding the stud fixedly against the flush tank.

3. An assembly according to claim 2 in which the handle, the lever, the stud and the nut are made of plastic materials.

4. An assembly according to claim 3 in which the first end of said lever is splined and the tubular structure of said handle is ribbed so that said lever and said handle mesh with each other.

5. An assembly according to claim 4 in which the stud has a squared segment substantially corresponding to the shape of the opening in said flush tank, said squared segment having external ribs for gripping the flush tank opening.

References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,295,686 9/1942 Pleasant et a1 467 2,454,43 l 11/ 1948 Crampton.

2,468,203 4/ 1949 Keller 467 2,469,000 5/1949 Pleasant 467 2,475,881 7/1949 Crampton 467 2,529,844 11/1950 Keller 467 2,609,546 9/ 1952 Gulick 467 2,668,961 2/ 1954 Owens 467 2,942,276 6/ 1960 Meister 467 LAVERNE D. GEIGER, Primary Examiner H. K. ARTIS, Assistant Examiner

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2295686 *Nov 21, 1941Sep 15, 1942Crampton Mfg CompanyValve actuating lever
US2454431 *Feb 5, 1945Nov 23, 1948Crampton Mfg CompanyDouble-action flush valve lever
US2468203 *Jun 24, 1946Apr 26, 1949Keller Fred MHandle and operating lever assembly for flushing tanks
US2469000 *Jul 22, 1946May 3, 1949Crampton Mfg CompanyValve-actuating lever
US2475881 *May 29, 1946Jul 12, 1949Crampton Mfg CompanyTank lever
US2529844 *Mar 26, 1949Nov 14, 1950Keller Fred MFlush lever
US2609546 *Jul 20, 1948Sep 9, 1952Eljer CoHandle and operating lever assembly for flushing tanks
US2668961 *Jan 24, 1951Feb 16, 1954Owens Jesse CToilet flush tank trip lever construction
US2942276 *May 27, 1959Jun 28, 1960Hoover Ball & Bearing CoHandle assembly for flush tank
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4575881 *Dec 28, 1984Mar 18, 1986Kohler Co.Perpendicular toilet trip lever assembly
US4864665 *Aug 18, 1988Sep 12, 1989John B. MillerDual flush system for toilets
US5400446 *Sep 27, 1993Mar 28, 1995Kohler Co.Seat cover actuated flushing mechanism for toilet
US6092245 *Dec 20, 1999Jul 25, 2000Jones; ButchToilet operating lever for multiple applications
US7596819 *Apr 19, 2007Oct 6, 2009Kohler Co.Trip lever assembly
US7861330 *Apr 17, 2006Jan 4, 2011Brasstech, Inc.Universal toilet tank lever
US8904572Nov 18, 2011Dec 9, 2014Kohler Co.Trip lever assembly
U.S. Classification4/412
International ClassificationE03D5/00, E03D5/092
Cooperative ClassificationE03D5/092
European ClassificationE03D5/092