US 3606102 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Sept. 20, 1971 T. M. LOWRY ETAL BEVERAGE DECANIER HANDLE AND SPOUT ASSEMBLY STRUCTURE Filed June 20, 1969 2 Sheets-Sheet l I/vvE/vraes: n g flan/0:44. Law/e9 I A CMQRLES WPu/vra/V K M #M flrraems-Os.
sept- 1971 T. M. LOWRY ETAL 6 3,606,102
BEVERAGE DECANTER HANDLE AND SPOUT ASSEMBLY STRUCTURE Filed June 20, 1969 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 firroezvssls.
united States Patent 1 U.S. Cl. 222-475 9 Claims ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE Aparatus for attaching a handle and pouring spout assembly to the neck of a glass flask having an outwardly beaded upper edge. A split locking ring engages around the neck of the flask under the bead, and a collar forming a part of the handle and spout assembly is engaged at the front thereof by tongue and groove means with the locking ring, and is pivoted downwardly and rearwardly into overlapping relationship over the flask bead, and the ring and handle and spout assembly are interlocked proximate the rear of the collar to secure the assembly to the neck of the flask.
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION Glass beverage decanters are almost universally employed today in restaurants for serving cotfee and other hot beverages and for heating water to be used in such beverages, because the level and nature of the contents can be seen at a glance, and also because glass is well recognized as a sanitary material. However, if the pouring spout of such a glass beverage decanter is also made of glass, as for example as an outwardly flaring continuation of the neck of the decanter, there is a high incidence of breakage. Accordingly, most of such glass beverage decanters now employ a durable pouring spout made of stainless steel or plastic which is attached to the decanter at the neck thereof by means of a metal band clamp which also serves to secure the handle to the decanter. A somewhat intricate full rubber gasket is also required in order to effect this connection at the neck of the decanter. While this conventional construction utilizing the metal band clamp and full gasket has been found to be generally satisfactory in service, it has the disadvantages of being unduly complicated and expensive, as well as being awkward and time consuming to assemble.
The full rubber gasket which must be employed with this conventional prior art construction engages about the neck and up and over the lip of the glass decanter, and must be soft in order to effect the required seal. This type of gasket has a tendency to twist and bend when there is a substantial load in the decanter, so that the handle connection to the decanter is not secure. Also, when the full gasket is wet, it becomes slippery, and sometimes can slip off of the bead at the top of the flask neck to release the flask from the handle. In the manufacture of such glass flasks, the beads at the tops thereof are not uniform or of regular size, and in order to effect a safe connection thereto where such a full rubber gasket is employed it is generally necessary to carefully inspect such beads before assembly and to reject any flask which has a head that is inadequate at any point around the periphery thereof.
One prior art means which has been suggested for simplifying the attachment of the handle and pouring spout 3,606,102 Patented Sept. 20, 1971 to the glass flask, and for permitting easier and more rapid assembly, is the combination of an externally threaded, split locking sleeve which engages around the neck of the flask under the outwardly projecting bead at the top of the neck, and an internally threaded collar forming a part of a handle and spout assembly, the collar being threadedly engaged over the locking sleeve while the sleeve is held stationary relative to the flask by skirt means on the sleeve which overlays a portion of the body of the flask immediately below the neck. This type of construction permits the use of a relatively thin annular sealing gasket which is simply engaged over the top of the flask bead, and thereby eliminates the aforesaid difficulties encountered with the conventional full rubber gasket. Such an arrangement is described and claimed in U.S. Pat. No. 3,400,865, issued Sept. 10, 1968. While such structure is simpler and less expensive than the conventional arrangement utilizing a metal band clamp, and has the advantage of a relatively rigid connection of the handle and spout assembly to the flask, permitted by the flat sealing gasket, it nevertheless has the disadvantage of undesirably high cost of manufacture because of the requirement that external threads be molded into the split sleeve and internal threads be molded into the collar, and substantial assembly time and effort involved in effecting the threaded connection between the parts.
Another proposal for avoiding the conventional metal band clamp described above in this type of apparatus is to provide a unitary, generally rigid handle-collar-pouring spout assembly wherein the collar comprises an unsplit cylindrical sleeve which is slidably engaged over an elongated flask neck and secured to the neck by means of an adhesive bonding agent. While such proposed arrangement has the advantage of the unitary handle-collar-pouring spout construction, the bonding requirement greatly increases the time required for manufacture, resulting in increased manufacturing cost, tends to make performance somewhat unreliable, and necessitates the use of a flask neck which is undesirably long. The only bonding material which has thus far proven sufliciently reliable in practice with this type of structure is an epoxy resin bonding material which requires oven treatment of the assembled apparatus for many hours in order to achieve a reasonably reliable bond that can withstand the heavy weight of liquid in the flask and the high operating temperatures to which such apparatus is normally subjected. Further, the conventional flask neck length is insufiicient for reliable bonding, and it is generally necessary to provide a flask neck on the order of two to three times the normal length, which undesirably increases the height of the flask and makes pouring more difficult and the flask less attractive.
Because of the relatively high cost of manufacture, the price to the consumer of beverage decanters of this general type has been such that the most popular types of construction have been those wherein the handle and spout assembly is releasably connectable to the glass flask so that in the event the flask is broken it can be replaced without requiring the purchase of an entire new unit. However, it would be preferred to have coffee decanters of this general type be sufficiently inexpensive so as to be what is commonly referred to as a throwaway item; i.e., in the event the glass flask becomes broken, the entire unit can be disposed of and replaced by a new unit, without having the total cost over an extended period of time become undesirably high.
3 SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION According to the present invention, a split locking ring is snapped down over the annular head or lip which is normally provided at the upper rim of the neck portion of the glass flask so as to be engaged about the neck immediately under the lip. This split ring has a narrow, forwardly projecting locking tongue which generally follows the curvature of the ring, and a diametrically opposed, rearwardly projecting locking ear, the tongue and ear providing means for securing a handle and pouring spout assembly over the neck of the flask. An annular collar forming a part of the handle and spout assembly has a groove in the front thereof within which the locking ring tongue is engageable, and the handle adjacent the collar has a downwardly opening recess therein within which the locking ring ear seats. Assembly is effected simply by first interengaging the locking ring tongue and mating collar groove at the front of the device, and then swinging the handle and spout assembly downwardly and rearwardly over the neck of the flask until the locking ring ear is seated in the aforesaid recess, and then securing the ear in this position by passing a fastener device through the base of the handle and the ear. A flange on the collar overlies the head at the top of the flask, and a simple flat annular gasket is engaged between this flange and the bead.
The structure of the present invention is so simple and economical to manufacture that if desired it can be produced as a throw-away item, in which case the fastener which secures the locking ring ear in the base of the handle proximate the collar is preferably in the form of a permanent rivet. Alternatively, if desired the handle and pouring spout assembly can be arranged for removable attachment thereof to the flask neck for replaceability of broken flasks by simply making the fastener a screw or bolt type of fastener which can be withdrawn for disassembly of the collar from the locking ring.
The present invention provides a substantially rigid, positive connection between the handle and pouring 'spout assembly and the neck of the flask, and in experimental units it has been found that regardless of irregularities in the heads at the tops of the flask necks, the connection is positive and secure and there is no likelihood of accidental separation.
A novel wedge-type fit is preferably provided between the locking ring and, the inner surface of the collar that forms a part of the handle and pouring spout assembly, both to facilitate assembly and to provide a tight and secure engagement between the assembled parts which is effected without requiring unusually close tolerances in the manufacture of the parts.
Further objects and advantages of this invention will appear during the course of the following part of this specification, wherein the details of construction and mode of operation of a presently preferred embodiment are described with reference to the accompanying drawings, in which:
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 is a side elevational view of a beverage decanter embodying the present invention.
FIG. 2 is an enlarged horizontal sectional view taken on the line 2-2 in FIG. 1.
FIG. 3 is a fragmentary, vertical section taken on the line 3-3 in FIG. 2.
FIG. 4 is a further enlarged, fragmentary, horizontal sectional view taken on the line 4-4 in FIG. 3.
FIG. 5 is a fragmentary view, partly in elevation and partly in vertical section, illustrating a step in the assembly of the parts.
FIG. 6 is an exploded, perspective view of the handle and spout assembly, gasket, and split locking ring of FIGS. 1 through 5, axially aligned prior to assembly.
FIG. 7 is a fragmentary vertical section, partly in elevation, illustrating a modified form of the invention employing a metal pouring spout.
DETAILED DESCRIPTION Referring to the drawings, and at first to FIGS. 1 through 6 thereof, a beverage decanter 10 according to the present invention employs a conventional rounded glass jar or flask 12 having a generally cylindrical neck portion 14 with an out-turned annular bead or lip 16 in its upper rim.
The handle and spout assembly is generally designated 18, and in the form of the invention shown in FIGS. 1 through 6 this is a unitary molded structure made of any suitable plastic material, as for example polypropylene. The handle and spout assembly 18 includes a generally circular collar 2!) and a handle 22 which extends rearwardly of the collar 20 and is attached to the collar 20 by means of an integral, connecting arm 24 which may be considered as a forward portion of the handle 22. An annular flange 26 extends radially inwardly from the upper edge of the collar 20; and defines a downwardly facing shoulder 28. A flat annular sealing gasket 30 composed of resilient material is seated within the collar 20 flush against the downwardly facing shoulder 28 on the flange 26, and in the operative position of the collar 26 over the neck portion 14 of the flask 12 as best illustrated in FIG. 3, the gasket 30 is sealingly engaged between the shoulder 28 and the outturned head or lip 16 at the top of the flask neck. A pouring spout 32 flares upwardly from the inner edge of the collar flange 26.
While the collar 20, handle 22, and pouring spout 32 have been illustrated in FIGS. 1 to 6 as a single molded plastic structure, it is to be understood that one or more of these parts may, if desired, be separately formed and the parts then joined together by any conventional means to provide the handle and spout assembly 18.
A split locking ring 34 is employed for connecting the handle and spout assembly 18 to the flask 12. Split ring 34 is preferably made of a suitable plastic material, as for example polypropylene, which has a limited amount of resiliency enabling it to be opened up sufficiently for engagement down over the lip 16 of the flask, while the ring is nevertheless generally rigid in construction so as to provide a generally solid and secure attachment means for connecting the handle and spout assembly 18 to the flask 12. The locking ring 34 has a locking tongue 36 projecting forwardly from the upper portion thereof, the tongue 36 being arcuate and following the contour of the outer periphery of ring 34. Preferably the locking ring 34 has only a single split 38 therein, which in the preferred form is located at the front of the locking ring 34 generally centrally of the locking tongue 36. A locking car 40 is, like the tongue 3-6, integrally formed with the ring 34-, the ear 4t] projecting rearwardly from the ring 34 generally diametrically opposite to the tongue 36. The ear 40 includes a transverse passage or down wardly opening notch 42 therethrough.
Collar 20 has an inwardly facing arcuate groove 44 formed therein, the groove 44- being. adapted to receive locking tongue 36 of the locking ring 34- therein, and being somewhat larger than locking tongue 36 to facilitate such engagement and to permit pivotal movement of the collar 20 relative to the split ring 34 after such engagement during assembly as illustrated in connection with FIG. 5. The locking tongue 36 on locking ring 34 defines a downwardly facing. shoulder 46 which engages a complementary upwardly facing shoulder 48 defined by the groove 44 in collar 20 to secure the front of collar 20 in its operative position as best illustrated in FIG. 3. A downwardly opening recess 50 is provided in the connecting arm part 24 of the handle 22, this recess opening out into the central enclosure defined by the collar 20. This recess 50 is adapted to receive the rear- Wardly projecting locking ear 40 of the split ring 34 in the fully seated, operative position of the collar 20 as 'best shown in FIG. 3, and this relative positioning of the parts is secured by engagement of a fastener member 51 transversely through the connecting arm portion of the handle and the notch 42 in ear 40 as shown in FIGS. 2 and 3. If permanent assembly is desired, as with a throwaway type of decanter, then preferably the fastener 51 will be a permanent pin or rivet. However, if the apparatus is desired to be capable of disassembly for replacealbility of the glass, then preferably the fastener 51 will be in the form of a removable screw or bolt or the like.
The split locking ring 34- preferably has an inner annular surface 52 which is of generally cylindrical form so as to seat substantially flush against the generally cylindrical neck portion 14 of the flask for secure engagement therebetween. In this seated operative position of the split ring 34 about the neck 14 of the flask, the upper, inner edge or corner -54 of the ring 34 bears against the underside of the out-turned bead or lip 16 on the flask.
The outer surface 56 of the split ring 34, which is substantially annular except for the interruptions occasioned by the forwardly projecting locking tongue 36, the split 38, and the rearwardly projecting locking car 40, is tapered downwardly and outwardly so as to be substantially frusto-conical. The substantially annular inner surface 58 of the collar 20 has a complementary downwardly and outwardly opening taper, and this is also substantially frusto-conical. These tapered, complementary surfaces 56 and 58 on the locking ring 34 and in the collar 20, respectively, serve two important functions. First, they provide suflicient clearance for the pivotal movement as illustrated in FIG. 5 of the collar 20 down into seated position over the neck of the flask and over the locking ring 34, without requiring substantial tolerance spacing between the inside of the collar 20 and the outside of the split ring 34 to accommodate the arcuate engaging movement. Accordingly, the final engagement of the parts is not required to be loose by any such undesirable spacing to accommodate the pivotal assembly movement.
The second important function of the complementary tapered surfaces '56 and 58 is that during assembly of the collar 20 as the collar approaches the final horizontal position as illustrated in FIG. 3, the tapered inner surface 58 of the collar 20 earns the tapered outer surface 56 of the ring radially inwardly, whereby the collar 20 constricts the split locking ring 34 tightly into engagement about the neck 14 of the flask, and in this condition of the parts the fastener 51 is installed. The flat annular gasket 30 is made suficiently thick between its flat upper and lower surfaces to accommodate any variations in thickness of the bead or lip 16 at the top of the flask and to nevertheless provide a liquid-tight seal between the flask and the pouring spout in this assembled rela tionship of the parts.
The amount of tapering of the surfaces 56' and 58 need not be large. Thus, in test apparatus made according to the invention, a taper of about 2 from the axis of surfaces 56 and 58, was found adequate.
Many users of beverage decanters of this general type prefer a metal pouring spout, and particularly a pouring spout made of stainless steel, over a plastic spout. For this reason we have provided the alternative handle and spout assembly 18a shown in FIG. 7 which embodies as a unitary part thereof a pouring spout composed of stainless steel or other suitable metal. The handle and spout assembly 18a includes a collar portion 201! having a rearwardly projecting handle portion 22a integrally connected thereto by means of connecting arm 24a. The collar 20a has radially inwardly directed flange 26a at the top there of, and metal pouring spout 32a is attached to the flange 26a and flares upwardly and outwardly from the collar 20a. A presently. preferred method of attaching; the metal pouring spout 32a to the collar 20a is to set the pouring spout in the mold for the collar before the molding of the collar has been completed, and then to mold the flange portion 260 of the collar about the pouring spout. It is desirable to have an outwardly turned curl or flange 60 at the base of the pouring spout 32a which serves to lock the pouring spout in position in the collar, and also provides a downwardly facing annular surface of the pouring spout which is engaged directly by the gasket 30a so that the gasket 30a provides a direct seal between the bead or lip 16 of the flask 12 and the pouring spout 32a. The split locking ring 34 is the same as in the other form of the invention shown in FIGS. 1 through 6, and and the manner in which the collar 20a is interlocked with the split ring 34' is likewise the same.
While the instant invention has been shown and described herein in what are conceived to be the most practical and preferred embodiments, it is recognized that departures may be made therefrom within the scope of the invention, which is therefore not to be limited to the details disclosed herein.
1. A beverage decanter which comprises a glass flask having a constricted neck with an outwardly beaded upper edge; a handle and pouring spout assembly attached to the neck of the flask comprising a substantially annular collar engaged over said neck, a pouring spout connected to the collar and flaring upwardly therefrom, and a handle connected to the collar and extending rearwardly therefrom; and means attaching said assembly to the neck of the flask comprising a split locking ring engaged about said neck under said outwardly beaded upper edge, with said collar engaged in generally circumscribing relationship about the looking ring to hold the ring constricted about the neck, and first and second connections between said assembly and said ring securing the collar about the ring and over the neck of the flask, said first connection comprising opposed, interengaged shoulder means forwardly disposed on the ring and in the collar, and said second connection comprising a rearwardly projecting ear on the ring and fastener means ongaged between said ear and said handle adjacent the collar.
2. A beverage decanter as defined in claim 1, wherein said shoulder means on the ring and in the collar are formed, respectively, on a tongue projecting forwardly from the ring and in a generally complementary groove in the collar.
3. A beverage decanter as defined in claim 2, wherein said split locking ring has only a single split therein, said split being located in the region of said tongue with portions of said tongue on both sides of said split.
4. A beverage decanter as defined in claim 1, wherein said handle has a downwardly opening recess therein, and said ear on the ring is disposed generally within said recess.
5. A beverage decanter as defined in claim 4, wherein said fastener means comprises an elongated, rigid fastener member extending generally transversely through said handle and said ear.
6. A beverage decanter as defined in claim '1, wherein said locking ring has an outer surface that is of substantially frusto-conical configuration, tapering downwardly and radially outwardly, and said collar has an inner surface generally complementary to said outer surface of the ring which is also substantially frusto-conical, flaring downwardly and radially outwardly, said substantially frusto-conical surfaces providing wedging engagement of the collar about the locking ring.
7. A beverage decanter as defined in claim 6, wherein said collar includes a radially inwardly directed annular flange at its upper edge which overlies said beaded upper edge of the neck of the flask, and a resilient annular gasket sealingly engaged between said flange and said beaded upper edge.
-8. A beverage decanter as defined in claim 7, wherein said collar, pouring spout and handle comprise a unitary, welded plastic structure.
9. A beverage decanter as defined in claim 7, wherein said collar and handle comprise a unitary, molded plastic structure, and said pouring spout is a metal structure attached to said collar.
References (Iited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,993,629 7/ 1961 Ruhn-ke 222-5 70X 2,998,169 8/ 1961 Fisher 222475 3,330,449 7/ 1967 Bloomfield et a1 222475 8 3,488,771 1/1970 Chase et a1 292256.65X 3,502,074 3/1970 Jones et a1 292256.65X 3,114,484 12/1967 Serio 222566X 3,400,865 9/ 1968 Hester 222475 3,516,580 6/ 1970 Hester 222-465 FOREIGN PATENTS 184,747 6/ 1936 Switzerland 292-25665 ROBERT B. REEVES, Primary Examiner N. L. STACK, JR., Assistant Examiner US. Cl, X.R. 222-570