US 3549044 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent 1 1 3,549,044
[ Inventor 2,362,354 11/1944 Clovis 220/904 1 310Ncmlshchimamm- 2,761,301 9/1956 Tellier 220/904 [2 1' pp 7 1 2,744,631 5/1956 Toomess 220/90.4x [221 Filed x- 1968 3,360,161 12/1967 Smith 220/904  Patented Dec.22, 1970 FOREIGN PATENTS 502,009 3/1939 Great Britain 220/90.4 [$4] ANTI-SPILLINGDEVICEFORDRINKING 283,128 3/1931 Italy 47/4l.13
CONTAINERS Primary ExaminerRaphael H. Schwartz 4 4 Dnwingmgs Attomey- Max R. Kraus 52 s, CL 220/904 (51] Int."- A473 19/22  Fkldd'Selrch, 128/222; ABSTRACT; A device d t d fo u e in a drinking con- -2' w in/41137411] tainer, such as a glass, cup, or the like, having ribs or walls which form a cellular grid with open ended cell-like compartand ments which engage the liquid in the container and limits the UNITED STATES PATENTS movement of the liquid in the upper portion of the container 904.5 1 "/1908 I Stokely 21 /18 when the container has been jarred or moved and thereby l,973,868 9/1934 Field 47141.13 minimizes spillage of the liquid from the container.
PATENTEU 050221976 3549044 7 INVEN 70/? Nalfian b. Le 5 25m ANTI-SPILLING DEVICE FOR DRINKING CONTAINERS BRIEF SUMMARY OF INVENTION It is well recognized that liquids in drinking containers, such as glasses, cups, and the like, will spill or slosh out of the container when held or while drinking if the container is jarred or moved. This is a common occurrence in train, automobile and plane travel. Therefore, an object of this invention is to provide a very simple and inexpensive device which is either readily insertable in a container or may bean integral part of a container to be filled with a liquid, which device is wholly or partially submerged in the liquid and which provides a plurality of open ended cell-like compartments, each of which tends to confine the liquid within its respective cell compartment and thereby minimizes the spilling orsloshing of the liquid out of the container.
Another object of this invention isto provide a very simple and inexpensive device which may be integrally molded or formed of a plastic or like material and which may be made so inexpensively that it can be thrown away after each use, or it may be reused if desired.
Other objects will become apparent as this description progresses.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS In the drawings:
FIG. 1 is a top plan view of one forrriof the device;
FIG. 2 is a sectional view taken on line 2-2 of FIG. 1;
FIG. 3 is an elevational view of the device inserted in a cup or container; and
FIG. 4 is a top plan view of a modified form of construction.
Referring first to the construction shown in FIGS. 1, 2 and 3, the device is generally indicated by the numeral 10 and may be integrally formed of plastic or like material to form a cellular grid. It may be readily and inexpensively molded in an injection molding machine. The device includes a plurality of annular ribs spaced from, each other. The outer orcircumfe'rential annular rib is designated by the numeral 12. The two intermediate annular ribs are designated 'by the numerals 14 and 16, and the innermost annular rib is designated by the numeral 18. The innermost annular rib defines an enlarged central opening 20. The annular ribs areconnected by a plurality of spaced radial ribs 22 which extend'from the'innermost annular rib 18 to the outermost annular rib 12.
The annular and radial ribs form a cellular grid consisting of a plurality of open ended cells or compartments 24 throughout the device. The openings at the top and bottom of each cell define the open ended cells. The cells or compartments 24 adjacent the perimeter of the device, designated by the letter A, have a larger area than the intermediate cells designated by the letter B, with the innermost cells designated by the letter C having the smallest area. Each pair of radially extending ribs 22 form in effect a pie'segm ent between each such pair of ribs.
As best shown in FIG. 2, the outermost annular rib 12 inclines slightly inwardly from the top towards the bottom,
. while the other annular ribs 14, 16 and 18, as well as the radial ribs 22 extend generally vertically. Also, the top of the device tapers or inclines upwardly from the outer perimeter towards the center, thus, the central annular rib 18 and the portions of the radial ribs adjacent thereto are on a'higher plane than the outermost annular rib 12 and the adjacent connected portions of the radial ribs. As can best be seen in FIGS. 2 and 3, there is a gradual taper downwardly from. the center or crown of the tainer so that a friction fit is formed between the grid device 10 and the container. The liquid, such as coffee, tea, milk, or other beverage is then poured into the container and can readily flow into the container by virtue of the open spaces between the ribs. When filled with a liquid, most of the device 10 will be submerged in or covered by the liquid.
By virtue of the open ended cellular like compartments the liquid in the upper portion of the container will be separated by the cellular compartments 24 and will be confined therein. This has the effect of trapping a comparatively small amount of liquid within each cellular compartment and this prevents the liquid from sloshing around in the container when the con tainer is jarred or moved. This therefore minimizes spillage of the liquid out of the container. By thus dividing the surface of the liquid in the container into cellular compartments the liquid is prevented from splashing or sloshing around in the container. p a
The enlarged central opening 20 permits sugar, cream or the like to be added to the liquid and also permits the insertion of a spoon or the like for stirring the contents of the container.
The opening also permits the insertion of a persons finger to engage the underside of the device to lift and remove it from the container after the liquid has been consumed.
Since the device is positioned below the top edge 28 of the container, the persons lips will not engage any portion of the device while drinking and hence will not interfere with the normal drinking from the container. This is further facilitated by the fact that the outermost portion or perimeter of the device which is closest to the inner wall of the container is on a lower plane than is the central portion of the device.
The device may be reused if desired, however, it can be inexpensively made so that it can be thrown away after each use.
The modification indicated by the numeral 30 and shown in FIG. 4 is like that previously described, except that the ribs are arranged differently. In the modification there is provided an outer annular rib 32, generally like the outer annular rib 12 previously described, and an inner annular rib 34 like rib l8. Extending between and connecting these annular ribs are a series of spaced vertically extending ribs 36 and spaced crossribs 38 with short diagonal ribs 40 which dividethe grid into a plurality of open ended cellular compartments 42. The inner annular rib 34 defines the enlarged central opening 44. The modified device has the central or crown portion of the device on a higher plane than the perimeter of the device and is used in the same manner as that previously described.
The device shown in FIGS. 1 to 4 is a honeycomb made of walls forming compartments which receive the liquid and reduces or prevents the sloshing of the liquid in the container. While the invention has been described and shown as an insert into a container, it will be understood that the device may be formed as an integral'part of a container.
I claim: 1
1. A device adapted for use in a container to minimize spillage of the liquid therein, said device comprising a cellular grid formed by a plurality of spaced annular walls connected by a plurality of spaced radial annular walls integrally formed of a plastic material and having a plurality of open ended compartments and an outer annular wall, the innermost wall being annular and forming an enlarged central opening, said device adapted to be inserted in a container below the top of said container and above the bottom of the container with the outer annular wall frictionally engaging the inner wall of the container to support the grid so that the cellular grid is in contact with the liquid in said container to prevent spillage of the liquid due to the jarring or movement of said container.
2. A device as set forth in claim 1 in which the spaced radial walls and the spaced annular walls form rows of cells in which the outermost cell of each row is larger than the innermost cell of each row.
3. A device as set forth in claim 1 in which the outermost wall of the grid is inclined inwardly from the top.
4. A device as set forth in claim 1 in which the central portion of the grid is on a plane higher than the perimeter of the grid.
UNITED STATES PATENT OFFICE CERTIFICATE OF CORRECTION Patent 3 .549 .044 Dated December 22 1970 I Nathan B Lerner It is certified that error appears in the above-identified patent and that said Letters Patent are hereby corrected as shown below:
Column 2 lines 56 and 57 cancel "annular", each occurrence.
Signed and sealed this 30th day of November 1971 (SEAL) Attest:
EDWARD M.FLETCHER,JR. ROBERT GOTTSCHALK Attesting Officer Acting Commissioner of Patem