US 3547308 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent Inventor Lester G. Gilliem 414 W. Hendricks St., Shelbyville, Ind. 46176 Aug. 5, 1968 Dec. l5, 1970 Appl. No. Filed Patented BEVERAGE DRINKING TUBE INSTALLATION 8 Claims, 8 Drawing Figs.
U.S. CI 220/90.2
Int. Cl. A47g 19/22J A47g 2l/l 8, A6lj 15/00 Field of Search 215/ l-S,
 References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,7l0,l08 6/1955 Zarra 2l5/l-A 2,805,809 9/ 1957 Pugh 229/7-S 2,815,981 12/1957 Nonnamaker et al. 215/1-A 2,837,234 6/ 1958 Mainiere 229/7-S 2,948,453 8/ 1960 Drown 229/7-S 3,326,695 6/ 1967 Neuhauser 229/7-S FOREIGN PATENTS 1,002,595 ll/l95l France 2l5/l-A Primary Examiner-Raphael H. Schwartz Attorney-Woodard, Weikart, Emhardt & Naughton ABSTRACT: A metal can with pull tab opener has a drinking tube disposed under the opener and urged toward the outside by a spring or float, the tube being rigid or accordion folded, with or without a concentric tube extending to the bottom of the container, and the drinking tube having a lip guard associated therewith in one embodiment.
BEVERAGE DRINKING TUBE INSTALLATION BACKGROUND oF THE INVENTION 1. Field of the Invention f This invention `relates generally to containers, and more' particularly to a beverage container with a pull-tab opener and a popup drinking tube.
2. Description ofthe Prior Art Prior art patents are known which incorporate straws in beverage containers. i
Examples are as follows: I
U.S. Pat. Nos. 3,349,955, Cornelius, vOct. 31, 1967;
3,215,329, Pugh, Nov. 2, 1965; 3,263,855,'Pugh,-Aug. 2, 1966; 3,295,715, Pugh, Jan. 3, 1967; 3,071,303, Pugh, Jan. l, 1963; and 2,547,362, Berry, Apr3, 1951.
It seems that such devices generally rely upon a straw having a length greater than the overallv height of the container, and bending the straw in some way to accommodate it in the container and, in one or more instances, to cause the straw to straighten when a cover is removed. There are instances where a straw extending to the bottom of the container might not be particularly desireable. An example is where the beverage has solids which tend to settle and vwhich could clog the inlet to the straw or at least causean objectionable sensa.- tion during the initial stages of consuming the beverage through the straw. Also, itis desirable that sanitary conditions be maintained and facilitated at all times', which would imply minimizing-the amount of opening in the container to avoid entrance of foreign matter, and also minimizing the need or possibility of the user contacting the exterior of the container with his lips. It is toward these and other objectives that the present invention is directed.
SUMMARY oF THE INVENTION ln a typical embodiment of the present invention, a container is provided with a drinking tube mounted therein and either a float or resilient means urging the tube toward the exterior. A pull-tab closure normally keeps the tube confined and sealed on the interior of the container but, when the tab is removed, the tube extends to the exteriorto facilitate drinking the contents therethrough.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS The full nature of the invention will be understood from the accompanying drawings and the following-description and claims.
FIG. 1 is an elevationalview of a beverage container with the drinking tube thereof extended to its normal positionafter.
removal of the pull-open sealer tab.
FIG. 2 is a fragmentary elevational view of the embodiment of FIG. 1 with a portion of the container omitted to conserve space, and a portion of the upperportion thereof cut away to FIG. 5 is an elevational view with the container wall broken y away, to illustrate an embodiment whereina float is employed to extend the drinking tube.
FIG. 6 is another embodiment wherein a rigid drinking tube is employed with a spiral spring.
FIG. 7 is another embodiment wherein a sleeve of rubber or other elastic is employed to extend the drinking tube.
FIG. 8 is an elevational view of still further embodiment employing a safety pin spring to elevate the drinking tube.
. 2 DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS I Referring now to the drawings in detail, the container ll is a typical cylindrical container which have a steel wall and aluminum ends or be of all steelcons't'ruction. The drinking tubel l2 in the upper end has accordion pleats circumferentially disposed therein and aispiral spring embedded in the material of the tube thereofso that upon removal of a pullopen sealer tab from the top, the ltubeextends to the position shown. A tube of rubber or plastic or other material which is of a type or configuration to be resiliently self`-extending without a spiral spring insert, might also be used. A lip guard 13 is affixed to the outer wall of the tube and is elevated to the position shown when the tube extends vas shown.
FIG. 2 showsthe same container but in this instance the lip guard 13 is just about flush with thet'op ofthe container and the pull-open sealer tab 14 is disposedin position covering the lip guard. The pull-open sealer tab ring is not shownin the drawing, but can be seen in the detail o f FIG. 4, which is a similar'construction.
ln FIG. 3, the container ll can be the same as can the lip guard 1 3 and the extendable drinking tube l2. l-lowever a rigid'concentric outer tube 17 is provided and extends to a point adjacent the bottom 18 and cylindrical wall surface to facilitate withdrawal of all of the contents of the container. The lower edge of tube 17 is serrated at 19 so that it can be immediately adjacent the bottom without sealing against the bottom.
I Referring now to FIG. 4, there is illustrated one example of possible details for the embodiment of FIG. 3. ln this instance the upper end 21 of the container is secured to the container wall 22 in the usual manner by a sutablerolled crimp seal. A mounting frame 23, which can be virtually any shape desired, is secured to the top of the cover 21 and receives the closure member 24 which is secured thereto by suitable crimping as indicated at 26. A central portion 27 of the closure is defined by a score line 28v and has the pull loop 29 extending therefrom.
. The drinking tube is an accordion pleated structure having the spiral spring 31 embedded therein and is compressed between the closure portion 27 and the annular seat 32 at the lower margin of a receiver 33 having a perimetral flange 34 secured to the underside of the cover 21 by a suitable adhesive 36 or other means.
The spring 31, and therefor the drinking tube, remains axially compressed inside the containerby the bottom surface of the closure portion 27. The circular lip guard 38 is disposed around the drinking tube and can be connected thereto by a membrane 39 extending around the tube and secured to the underside of the lip guard and secured also to the tube around a circle at the location 4l. The tube receiver 33 is terminated at the bottom of the pocket 32 in the embodiment of FIGS. l and 2. However in the embodiment of FIGS. 3 and 4 it extends downwardly to form the tube 17 whose entrance opening is at the bottom of the container, with the serrations 19 to avoid inadvertent sealing closure at the bottom.
To open the container and release the drinking tube, the pull loop 29 is grasped with the fingers or a thumb and finger and pulled upwardly in the direction of the arrow 42. By so doing, it pulls the central portion 27 away from the rest of the closure member 24 around the score line 28 for removal of the portion 27. This releases the drinking tube and the spring moves it upwardly to the position shown in FIG. 3. In so doing, the lip guard is also raised, being connected to the tube. Because the membrane 39 is flexible, and because a portion of the tube above the lip guard level while the container is closed, extends beyond that level, the lip guard is spaced between the top of the container and the top of the tube a suitable distance upon opening. i
In the embodiment of FIG. 5 the drinking tube is rigid so it is given a new reference numeral 46. A lfloat 47 is secured to the bottom of this tube and has suitable buoyancy to raise the tube as soon as the pull-tab closure 48 is removed. A suitable sleeve of thin rubber or plastic 49 is provided around the tube, sealed to the underside of the cover at 51 and sealed to the tube or the float. This prevents loss of container contents through the opening at the top and around the exterior of the tube when the container is opened.
In the embodiment of FIG. 6, the drinking tube 52 has a spiral spring 53 around the exterior thereof and which is normally under tension when the container is closed, the upper end of the spring being connected to the underside of the lid at '54. ln this instance, the lower end of the tube is flared outwardly at 56 to securely plug the aperture at the upper end whenv the tube is extended, so that the container contents do not flow outwardly around the outside of the tube.
In the embodiment of FIG. 7, the tube 57 is encircled by a yresilient elastic or rubber sleeve 58. This serves not only the same purpose as does that of sleeve 49 of yFIG. 5, but also serves to raise the tube and extend it from the container, once the closure is removed by pulling the tab.
Referring now to FIG. 8, the drinking tube 59 has the lower end 61 of a safetypin-type of spring'62 connected thereto, the center loop of the spring being at 63 and the upper end thereof being secured to the bottom of thet container cover at 64. In this embodiment, as in the embodiment of FIG. 6, or FIG. 7, appropriate means can be provided to seal around the tube once it is extended, to avoid lossof liquid from the container around the outside of the tube.
While the invention has been disclosed and described in some detail in the drawings and foregoing description, they are to be considered as illustrative and not restrictive in character, as other modifications may readily suggest themselves to persons skilled in this art and within the broad scope of the invention, 'reference being made to the appended claims.
l. In a container, apparatus for drinking contents therefrom and comprising:
' a drinking tube normally disposed inside said container;
resilient means connected to said tube and urging it toward the exterior of said container;
retainer means normally retaining said tube in said container; and
said tube being normally collapsed inside said container and said resilient device being a spiral spring coaxial with said tube.
2. The combination of claim l wherein said tube is pleated to axially compressto the collapsed condition thereof in the container, and open up upon removal of said retainer means, said spring being coextensive with said tube when said tube is in said collapsed condition.
3. The combination of claim land further comprising a lip guard mounted around said tube and under said retainer and movable, upon release of said tube by said retainer means, to a position between the top of said container and the outlet end of said tube.
4. The combination of claim 3 wherein:
said guard is a card attached to said tube intermediate the ends thereof and movable to ysaid position by the spring extension of said tube from said container; and
said retainer being a pull-tab closure and normally concealing said tube and said card, but removable to expose'both said tube and said card.
5. The combination of claim 1 wherein said spring is embedded in said tube.
6. The combination of claim 1 and further comprising:
a spring seat spaced from said retainer means toward the interior of said container; and
said spring being embedded in said tube and compressed between said retainer means and said seat,
7. The combination of claim 6 wherein a second tube is disposed in said container and provides the exclusive communication path between said rst vtube andthe contents of said container. l h
8. The combination of claim 7 wherein said second tube has