US 3545682 A
Abstract available in
Claims available in
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent  Inventor Walter C. Beard South St., Mlddlebury, Connecticut 06762 (21 Appl. No. 772,453  Filed Oct. 9,1968
Continuation-impart of application Ser. No. 629,224, April 7, 1967, abandoned.  Patented Dec. 8, I970  DISPENSING DEVICE 15 Claims, 13 Drawing Figs.
 US. Cl. 239/469, 239/492. 239/534. 239/573.239/602: 222/151. 222/494  Int. Cl B05b1/34  Field olSearch 239/115, 116, 333, 337, 468, 469, 491, 492, 534, 573,579, 602; 222/150, 151,494, 495
 References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 501,178 7/1893 Bourdil 239/571X 3,] l8,6l2 l/l964 Abplanalp 239/579 3,250,474 5/l966 McKernan 239/579X FOREIGN PATENTS 1,242,356 8/1960 France 239/308 747,465 6/l933 France 222/494 Primary Examiner-M. Henson Wood, Jr. Assistant Examiner-Michael Y. Mar Attorney-Delio and Montgomery ABSTRACT: A dispensing device for use with a pressurized or aerosol can or the like for dispensing fluids, comprising a hollow body member of rigid material and a first member positioned on one end of said hollow member, wherein said first member has a central raised portion. A resilient top wall having an opening for dispensing fluids is positioned above the top of said central raised portion, such that the top wall and the top of said central raised portion form a swirl chamber. The opening in the top wall is opened and sealed by means of fluid pressure.
PATENTEDDEE 8km: 3.5455 2 m SHEEIlDl-Z 20 '40 P Q E5? 1 42.
INVENTOR WaH'er C.. Beard ATTORNEYS BY mfomwmm DISPENSING DEVICE This application is a continuation-in-part of copending U.S. Pat. application Ser. No. 629,224 filed Apr. 7, I967, now abandoned.
This invention relates to dispensing devices and more particularly to dispensing devices suitable for use with pressurized or aerosol containers or the like, and especially suitable for dispensing viscous materials such as foods, toothpastes, cosmetic creams, paints and analogous materials. This invention is also suitable for use in dispensing antiperspirants, starches,.hair lacquers and the like.
With present-day dispensing devices, particularly those currently used for dispensing foods and paints, the valve-sealing means is generally at some distance from the orifice through which the viscous fluid is expelled. Due to this circumstance the viscous fluids, particularly paintsand foods, tend to fill up the area between the valve controlling the emission of the fluid and the orifice and to become dry and hardened, thereby clogging the conduit and the orifice. When this occurs, it becomes extremely difficult to remove the hardened material and, upon reuse of the aerosol container, to empty the usable contents and gain the benefit of the unused portion of the contents.
Furthermore, in the case of a food material, the food which has accumulated between the mechanism and the orifice will tend to spoil or' spore micro-organisms, which would be detrimental to health.
For the foregoing reasons, applicant has provided an improved dispensing device, suitable for dispensing viscous materials.
Accordingly, it is an object of this invention to provide a new and improved dispensing device which will operate effciently to dispense fluid and semifluid'materials which would tend to clog or otherwise obstruct pumping passages because of their physicalcharacteristics.
Another object of this invention is to provide a new andimproved dispensing device which will operate satisfactorily to dispense materialswhich would dry up or cake and which may spore micro-organisms detrimental to health.
A further object ofthis invention is concerned with a new and improved dispensing device which is of simple construction, inexpensive to manufacture, easily adaptable for aerosol containers, and provides self-cleaning features.
Still other objects and advantages of the invention will become apparent from the following description and the claims taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings which, by way of illustration, show the preferred embodiments for carrying out the principles of the invention.
FIG. 1 is a sectional view of a pressurized container having the preferred dispensing device or spray head according to this invention;
FIG. 2 is a front view of the spray head of FIG. 1;
FIG. 3 is a view similar to FIG. 1, showing the dispensing device in operation;
FIG. 4 is a sectional view of an alternate embodiment of the invention;
FIG. 5 is a view similar to FIG. 4, showing the device in operation;
FIG. 6 is a perspective view showing another embodiment of the invention which includes a swirl chamber formed in a cap;
Hg. 7 is a bottom view of thecap of FIG. 6;
FIG. 8 is a sectional view taken along line 8-8 of FIG. 6;
FIG. 9 is a sectionalviewsimilar to FIG. 8', showing another embodiment of the invention;
FIG. 10 is a sectional view similar to FIG. 8, but showing a further embodiment of the invention;
FIG. 11 is a sectional-view similar to FIG. 8, showing still another embodiment of the invention;
FIG. 12 is a sectional view similar to FIG. 8, showing yet another embodiment of the invention; and
FIG. 13 is-a sectional view taken along lone 13-13 of FIG. 12.
Referring to FIGS. 1-3, there is illustrated a dispensing device or spray head 20 constructed in accordance with the invention, which is here shown mounted on a valve structure designated generally at 21, carried by a pressurized container 22. The structure 21 includes a valve plunger 23 normally biased upwardly by means of a coiled spring 24 contained within the valve housing 26. The upper flanged end 28 of the valve housing is crimped, as at 30, to the bottom of a gasket 29. The plunger 23 is intended to ride up and down inside the housing 26 and has a shoulder 31 formed on its upper end which engages the bottom of the gasket 29 about its central opening 32 in valve-seating relationship. The spray head 20 has a depending stem 34 slidably but sealably engaging through said central opening 32 and operating the valve structure. Through the wall at the bottom end of the stem 34 is a slot 35. The stem 34 is hollow as shown, providing a central conduit 36. Thus, when the stem is pushed down by pressing on the top of the spray head 20, the shoulder 31 will be unseated from the bottom of the gasket 29' and access will be had for the propelled mixture coming from the container 22 by way of the dip tube 37. The mixture will pass alongside the valve plunger, past the shoulder 31 into the slot 35 and up into the conduit 36, to be dispensed.
A valve mechanism of this type is shown in U.S. Pat. 3,129,893 issued Apr. 21, 1964 to Green. It is to be understood that the dispensing device or spray head according to this invention could be utilized with many other types of valve mechanisms, such as commonly in use with aerosol cans or the like. The purpose of showing the valve mechanism in FIG. 1 is merely illustrative and should not be considered as limiting the invention.
The dispensing device 20 of the invention comprises a pin member 40 supported in the bask wall of the stem 34. A cap member 41 is provided with a resilient portion 42 having an orifice 43. The pin 40 and resilient portion 42' form a seal when the aerosol deviceis not in use. The resilient member 42 may be constructed of rubber or synthetic materials (plastics) such as ethylene vinyl acetate or the like.
As shown in FIG. 3, the diaphragm portion 42 is moved outwardly by fluid, as shown by the arrows 44, causing it to lift upwardly and outwardly away from the pin 40. Upon release of the stem, a seal will once again be formed between the pin 40 and the flexible resilient means 42.
It will therefore be seen that a simple mechanism has been provided for sealing the outletorifice of a spray can or the like to prevent clogging of the orifice by the fluid to be propelled drying over the orifice. If'a slight amount of hardened matter does form over the orifice, the device is so constructed that, by its being blown outwardly, the matter clogging the orifice will crack open since it is under the pressure of the fluid being expelled from the can.
Referring now to FIGS. 4 and 5, an alternate embodiment of the invention is shown. In this embodiment, the stem of the valve mechanism is shown at 45 and has a passageway 46 formed therein. A cavity 47 is formed at the top of the passageway 46 on whichis mounted a cap 48, preferably of a rigid material, in which there is formed an outlet orifice 49. Positioned within the cavity 47 is a resilient member 50 constructed in the form of a diaphragm, which is secured in the cavity 47. The diaphragm 50 has an elongated pin 51 of resilient material supported therefrom. An air escape hole is provided at 52 in back of the diagram, as shown. In operation, the-pin 49 moves rearwardly, as shown in FIG. 5, under pressure of fluid, shown by the arrows, and the fluid is therefore permitted to escape from thedispensing device. It is to be understood, with reference to the embodiment of FIGS. 15,-as
well as the embodiments to be described, that the pin may ex tend through the orifice, or may extend up into the orifice, or to a point where the orifice and pin just meet, so long as a seal is formed between the pin and the walls about the orifice.
Now referring to FIGS. 6-8, a modified form of the invention is shown, having a swirl chamber which may be substantially circular or elliptical, or any other suitable shape. In
FIGS. 68, the stem shown at 59 has a central passageway 60. A cap 61 is positioned over the stem and fits on an undercut portion 62 formed in the stem 59. Also, mounted on the top portion of stem 59 is a raised portion 63 having an annular depression 64 formed therein. An opening 65 is formed at the base of the depression 64 and communicates with the passageway 60. The raised portion 63 has another raised portion 66 formed thereon which supports a rigid pin member 67. The swirl chamber 69 is formed'between an inner wall 68 and the member 66. Slots 70 are provided in the walls of the swirl chamber for providing fluid, preferably tangentially, into the interior of the swirl chamber. It is to be understood that a single slot may be provided, if desired. In addition, an annular recess or chamber 72 is provided between the stem 59 and the cap 61. The top of the cap 73 comprises a resilient portion which extends and seal, with the pin 67. It is to be understood that the cap and stem could be an integral one-piece unit or the cap could fit over the stem and be constructed such that only the portion 73 is of resilient material whereas the remainder may be of a rigid material. In operation, fluid enters the passageway 60 and thence into the depression 64 through the opening 65. It then travels into the annular chamber 72 and enters the slots 70. The fluid enters the swirl chamber through theslots 70 and is then expelled past the resilient portion 73 as it raises due to the pressure within the swirl chamber.
With reference now to FIG. 9, there is shown another modified form of the invention. In this configuration, the stem is shown at having a passage 81 formed therein and a cap member 82 positioned thereon. The cap member is constructed such that the passageway 81 extends upwardly into the cap and provides fluid directly into the slot shown at 83, comparable to the slots 70 in FIGS. 6 and 7. Thereafter, the fluid enters the swirl chamber 84 and exits by way of an orifice 85 formed between a rigid pin member 86 and a resilient cap portion 87. In this embodiment, chambers are not provided in either the cap or stem member.
Referring now to FIG. 10, still another embodiment of the invention is shown, wherein only the cap portion is provided with an annular chamber which cooperates with the slots or passageways-feeding fluid to the swirl chamber, In particular, the stem is shown at 90 and has a passageway 91 therein. The passageway 91 provides fluid to an annular chamber which in turn provides fluid to a swirl chamber 93. From there, the fluid exits between the pin 94 and the resilient portion 95 of the cap member.
With reference to FIG. 11, there is shown yet another embodiment of the invention, in which the annular chamber is incorporated only in the body member and feeds fluid directly into the passageways-providing fluid to the swirl chamber. A stem has a passageway 101 formed therein. An annular chamber is formed at 102 and provides fluid to the slots or passageways 103. The fluid then enters the swirl chamber 104 and exits between the pin 105 and the flexible or resilient portion 106.
FIGS. 12 and 13 illustrate still another embodiment of the invention which utilizes a swirl chamber of variable shape. The stem shown at 107 has a central passageway 108 for the passage of fluids. Positioned over the stem 107 is a cap 109 which fits on an undercut portion 110 formed in the stem. Also, mounted on the top portion of stem 107 is a raised portion 111 having an annular depression 112 formed therein. A passageway 113 is formed at the base of the depression 112 which connects with the passageway 108. The raised portion 111 has a further raised portion 114 located on top of it which abuts and comes into contact with the top 115 of cap 109. An annular wall 116 having slots 117 therein surrounds the top part of raised portion 114. The slots 117 provide fluid, preferably tangentially, to the top end of raised portion 114. Although two slots are shown in FIGS. 12 and 13, it is to be understood that one slot or more than two slots may be used. Connecting the depression 112 with slots 117 and located between the annular wall 116 and the cap 109 is a chamber 118. The top 115 of cap 109 is constructed of a resilient material and has an orifice 119 therein which is sealed by raised portion 114.
It can be seen that the embodiment illustrated in FIGS. 12 and 13 is the same as that shown in FIGS. 68, with the exception that, in FIG. 12, the raised portion 114 which corresponds to raised portion 66 in FIG. 8, is raised so that it abuts the top 115 of cap 109. Additionally, wherein in FIG. 8 a pin 63 is used to seal the orifice in the top 73 of cap 61, in FIG. 12 such a pin is not utilized. l 'lowever, it should be understood that a pin may also be used in the embodiment of FIG. 12 to provide a more secure seal with the orifice, although that is not necessary. It is to be further understood that, although the embodiment of FIG. 12 is a modification of the embodiment of FIG. 8, the same modification, that is, the raised portion 114 abutting the top 115 of cap 109, can be applied to the other embodiments of the present invention illustrated in FIGS. 9-11.
In the operation of the embodiment of FIG. 12, fluid enters the passageway 108 and then passes into the depression 112 through passageway 113. The fluid then passes into annular chamber 118 from which it flows through slots 117. The fluid pressure raises the top 115, as shown by the dotted lines, so as to open the orifice 119 and form a swirl chamber between the top 115 and the top of raised portion 114. When the fluid .pressure is released, the top 115 falls back and comes into contact with the top of raised portion 114 so as to close the orifice and eliminate the swirl chamber. It can be noted that the higher the fluid pressure, the larger the size of the swirl chamber will be. The advantage of this embodiment over the other embodiments, is that the fluid materials are thoroughly mixed in the swirl chamber before being dispensed, whereas in the other embodiments the fluid already present in the swirl chamber before the dispensing device is used, is not thoroughlyv mixed when it passes out of the orifice. Moreover, this embodiment is simpler and more economical to manufacture than the embodiments of FIGS. 6-l1.
It will thus be apparent that many different configurations may be constructed according to the teachings of FIGS. 6- --13, without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention.
It can therefore be seen that the objects set forth above, among those made apparent from the preceding description, are efficiently attained and since certain changes may be made in the above constructions without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention, it is intended that all matter contained in the foregoing description or shown in the accompanying drawings be interpreted as illustrative and not in a limiting sense.
It is also to be understood that the following claims are intended to cover all the generic and specific features of the invention herein described and all statements of the scope of the invention which, as a matter of language, might be said to fall therebetween.
1. A dispensing device for use with the valve of a pressurized or aerosol container for dispensing viscous fluids, comprising a hollow body member of rigid material, a second member positioned on one end of said hollow member, said second member having a central raised portion, a first chamber positioned about and extending above said central raised portion, first passage means in the sidewall of said first chamber for providing fluid to said first chamber, second passage means for providing fluid from said hollow member to said first passage means, wherein said first chamber has a resilient flat top wall portion with an orifice therein for expelling fluid from said first chamber, a pin mounted on said central raised portion for providing a seal with said orifice when fluid pressure is not acting upon said resilient top wall portion, such that said resilient top wall portion is uniformly flat when fluid pressure is not acting upon it.
2. A device according to claim 1, in which said first chamber is a swirl chamber.
3. A device according to claim 1, in which said top wall portion is part of a cap member, such that said cap member may fit about a flange formed in said central raised portion.
4. A device according to claim 1, in which said first chamber is cylindrical in shape.
5. A dispensing device in accordance with claim 1, wherein said second passage means includes a second chamber formed about said central raised portion such that fluid passes from said second chamber into said first passage means.
6. A dispensing device for use with a pressurized or aerosol container for dispensing fluids, comprising a hollow body member of rigid material, a first member positioned on one end of said hollow member, said first member having a central raised portion, a first chamber having sidewalls positioned about and extending above said central raised portion, first passage means formed in the sidewalls of said chamber, an annular second chamber positioned about said first chamber to provide fluid to said first passage means, and second passage means for providing fluid from said hollow body member to said second annular chamber, said first chamber having a top wall portion with an opening therein for expelling fluid from said first chamber.
7. A dispensing device according to claim 6, in which the top wall portion is of a resilient material and in which a pin is provided on said raised central portion for forming a seal with said wall portion.
8. A dispensing device according to claim 6, in which said second passage means further includes a depression formed in said first member about said central raised portion for providing fluid to said annular second chamber.
9. A dispensing device for use with a pressurized or aerosol can or the like for dispensing fluids, comprising a hollow body member of rigid material, a first member positioned at one end of said hollow member, said first member having a central raised portion, a top wall constructed of resilient material and having an opening for expelling fluids, wherein said top wall abuts the top end of the central raised portion, and passageway means connecting said hollow body member to the top of said central raised portion such that the central raised portion seals the opening in said top wall when there is no fluid pressure and wherein, when there is fluid pressure applied to the resilient wall, a flexible swirl chamber is formed between the central raised portion and the top wall.
10. A dispensing device according to claim 9, wherein a pin is provided on said raised central portion for forming a more secure seal with the opening in said top wall.
11. A dispensing device according to claim 9, wherein said passageway includes passage means formed adjacent the top end of said central raised portion.
12. A dispensing device according to claim 11, wherein said passageway further includes an annular second chamber positioned to provide fluid to said passage means adjacent the top end of said central raised portion.
13. A dispensing device according to claim 11, wherein said passageway further includes a depression formed in said first member about said central raised portion for providing fluid to said passage means adjacent the top end of said central raised portion.
14. A dispensing device according to claim 12, wherein said passageway additionally includes a depression formed in said first member about said central raised portion for providing fluid to said second annular chamber.
15. A flexible swirl chamber device having a top wall and a bottom wall, wherein said top wall is constructed of resilient material and has an orifice therein and, further, wherein the top wall ordinarily abuts the bottom wall to seal the orifice and, on the application of fluid pressure, the resilient top wall moves to form a swirl chamber and open the orifice.