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Publication numberUS3620413 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateNov 16, 1971
Filing dateAug 11, 1969
Priority dateAug 11, 1969
Publication numberUS 3620413 A, US 3620413A, US-A-3620413, US3620413 A, US3620413A
InventorsBorsum Adolph W
Original AssigneeBorsum Adolph W
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Dispensing closure device for tablet container
US 3620413 A
Images(3)
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent [72] Inventor Adolph W. Borsum 521 Pacific Ave., Sohna Beach, Calif. 92075 [21] Appl. No. 848,980 [22] Filed Aug. 11, I969 [45] Patented Nov. 16,1971

[54] DISPENSING CLOSURE DEVICE FOR TABLET CONTAINER 6 Claims, 13 Drawing Figs.

[52] U.S. I 221/289, 221/256 [51] Int. Cl 865d 83/04 [50] Field oiSearch 221/174, 288, 289, 220, 256, 266

[56] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,086,296 7/1937 Gilbert 221/256 X 2,957,503 10/1960 Stifter 221/289 X 5/1965 Raimo 3,409,172 11/1968 Fuglsang-Madsen etal.

ABSTRACT: A closure device for a tablet container that controls the rate and number of tablets dispensed through an opening in the container, which device includes an expandable dispensing opening that is resiliently biased to a narrow channel that restricts passage of tablets therethrough. The channel is enlarged by pressing a cap member thereagainst, which cap member has a surface that coacts therewith, expanding the channel radially outward to pass a selective number of tablets into a tablet receptacle portion. The cap member has a lip that coacts with a lip on the dispensing opening to provide a lockseal closure of the container. The resilient force that narrows the channel may also exert force against the cap member in an axial direction to further lockseal the closure device.

PATENTEDNUV 1s |97l sum 2 OF 3 1700 1) FIG.6

INVENTOR. ADOLPH W. BORSUM ATTORNEY DISPENSING CLOSURE DEVICE FOR TABLET CONTAINER BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION Pills, tablets, and like are often carried and dispensed from containers having many different shapes and configurations. It is well known that there is considerable danger in having containers that readily and easily dispense pills, and the like in large and unmeasured quantities. Medicaments in pill or tablet form are often of a harmful nature to children and adults alike when taken in large amounts. Thus, such containers when readily available to children or adults can create hazardous conditions where such persons improperly remove successive amounts of pills and thus consume a dangerous quantity of such tablets. So it is advantageous to make the openings of such tablet dispensers only capable of dispensing tablets in limited and measured quantities and to make it relatively difficult to remove tablets from the containers in any sizable quantities by children or by adults inadvertently.

There are known tablet-container closure devices for limiting the quantity of tablets dispensed from tablet containers. However, such closure devices are expensive to construct, are difficult to use, have weak structures, or often require special adaptation of the tablet container structures to accept the closure devices. Where such known closure devices employ an expandable opening in the opening of the tablet container that is expanded by the cap member, the cap member holds the opening in the expanded condition when the cap member is sealed to the container. Since the cap member is normally sealed to the container for long periods of time, the expandable opening often becomes set in the open position, making the device inoperable. Further it is necessary in such closure devices to achieve a sealing of the container opening while still maintaining the closure device difficult to open and when opened, to only dispense one or two tablets at a time.

Thus it is advantageous to have a simplified, easy to construct, inexpensive, table-dispensing container with a closure opening that is difficult to open by children or inadvertently by adults, that employs an expandable, restricted tablet passage in the container opening that is not held in the expanded condition when the container opening is closed and sealed by a cap member, that employs the resilient biasing of the restricted tablet passage to assist in holding the cap member in a locksealed condition in closing the dispenser opening, and further that is easily adaptable for use on existing bottles and tablet containers, or in specially made pilland tablet-dispensing containers.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION In embodiments of the tablet-container closure of this invention, a body portion is positioned in the dispensing opening of the tablet container. The body portion has a plurality of concentrically placed fingers that form a restricted channel in the container opening. The body portion or the fingers have camming surfaces that are contacted by a cap member, which cap member has a coacting camming surface that cams the fingers outwardly expanding the channel when the cap member is pressed into the opening. This spreading of the con centrically placed fingers and an inverted positioning of the container allows one or more pills or tablets to pass through the expanded channel into a receptacle portion in either the cap member or the body portion. The space between the restricted channel formed by the fingers and the cap member or a space in the cap member, forms the receptacle portion that is normally sufficient to only hold one or two tablets. Upon prying the cap member from a lockseal position in the opening, the one or more tablets in the receptacle portion are available to the user. Since axial movement of the cap member allows the concentrically placed fingers to resiliently return to the contracted position, other tablets are incapable of passing through the restricted channel and thus be dispensed; therefore it is necessary to reinsert the cap member into the container opening and apply sufficient force to again cam apart the concentrically spaced fingers to allow subsequent dispensing of additional tablets.

The circumference of the cap member has a lip that coacts with a lip on the body portion. These lips provide a snap retention of the cap member over the opening and when the lips abut, provides locksealing of the container opening. The cap member is capable of moving axially relative to the concentrically placed fingers, so that when the cap member is placed in the locksealed position, the camming surface of the cap member and the camming surface for spreading the concentrically placed fingers are adjacent each other. The adjacent camming surfaces force the sealing lips together further assuring a lockseal of the container opening. However, the concentrically placed fingers are only slightly diverged by this camming action. Thus the cap member employs the resilient force of the concentrically placed fingers to help assure a sealing closure of the container opening and yet the camming surface of the cap member does not hold the concentrically placed fingers in sufficiently divergent and expanded position to cause the fingers to become set in the expanded condition or experience cold flow in the case of certain plastic material.

The cap on the container is pressed inwardly while the container is in the inverted position allowing the tablets to gravitationally pass into the receptacle portion. At the point of release of pressure on the cap, the cap is forced outwardly by the force of the spring return tension and camming action of the concentrically placed fingers on the cap member, that forces the cap member into sealing contact with the container and also allows the concentrically placed fingers to return to a position that restricts further passage of tablets through the opening. The cap member is then opened by a prying action. While the cap member is easily operated by an adult, it creates considerable frustration and utter futility in a child attempting to remove tablets through the container closure. Further the container closure removes tablets in measured amounts of a predetermined number at a time. Since the structure restricts removal of additional tablets even though the cap member is removed, the tablets may be dispensed from the container while the container is in an inverted position providing a contamination-proof precautionary feature relative to the internal volume and contents of the container.

It is therefore an object of this invention to provide a new and improved tablet-dispensing closure device for tablet containers.

It is another object of this invention to provide a new and improved tablet-container closure that only dispenses pills or tablets in small and measured amounts.

It is another object of this invention to provide a new and improved tablet-container closure that may be easily and inexpensively constructed and that is easily employable on special tablet containers or on existing bottle-type tablet containers.

It is another object of this invention to provide a new and improved tablet-container closure that may be easily opened by adults but is extremely difiicult for children to open and remove tablets from the container in any significant amount.

It is another object of this invention to provide a new and improved tablet-contaner closure having a lockseal that is resiliently held in position.

It is another object of this invention to provide a new and improved tablet-container closure for obtaining maximum simplification and flexibility with minimum cost, fast and easy operation even by frail or arthritic persons, contaminationproof, spill-proof, and child-proof pill container. and maximum sterility in dispensing tablets.

Other objects and many advantages of this invention will become more apparent upon a reading of the following detailed description and an examination of the drawings wherein like reference numerals designate like parts throughout and in which:

FIG. I is a vertical transverse sectional view of one form of a tablet container with the dispensing closure device in the closed condition.

FIG. 2 is a vertical transverse sectional view with parts broken away of the tablet container and closure device of FIG. 1 with the cap member in the open condition.

FIG. 3 is a vertical transverse sectional view with parts broken away of a modified embodiment of the dispensing closure device.

FIG. 4 is a vertical transverse sectional view with parts broken away of still another modified embodiment of the dispensing closure device.

FIG. 5 is a vertical transverse sectional view of another embodiment of a tablet container with dispensing closure device of this invention with the cap member in the closed condition.

FIG. 6 is a' vertical transverse sectional view with parts broken away of another embodiment of the invention.

FIG. 7 is a top plan view of one-half of the insert in the embodiment of FIG. 6 in the tablet dispensing condition.

FIG. 8 is a vertical transverse sectional view with parts broken away of the embodiments of theinvention.

FIG. 9 is a vertical transverse sectional view of still another embodiment of the invention.

FIG. 10 is a vertical transverse sectional view with parts broken away of the embodiment of FIG. 9 in one stage of tablet dispensing.

FIG. 11 is a vertical transverse sectional view with parts broken away of the embodiment of FIG. 9 in another stage of tablet dispensing.

FIG. 12 is a vertical transverse sectional view with parts broken away of a modified form of the invention.

FIG. 13 is a vertical transverse sectional view with parts broken away of still another modified embodiment of the invention.

Referring to FIGS. 1 and 2, a container 10 has pills or tablets 42, 44 and 45 in an elongated cylindrical housing 12. The pills rest on cotton or similar material 13 in the known manner. The upper portion of the cylindrical container 10 has an outer cylindrical band 14 with an upper inwardly directed circular lip 34 and a lockseal camming groove 31. Positioned inside the band 14 are a plurality of fingers 16 that have ends 36 with inwardly directed lip portions 40 and upper cam surfaces 38. The fingers 16 are concentrically positioned with slots 46 therebetween and are integrally secured to the band 14 at 48. The band 14 is integrally secured to container 10 at 15. A circular cap member 24 has an outer rim 22 with a cylindrical portion 23 and an outwardly projecting lip portion 32. Lip portion 32 is connected to a concave receptacle portion 26 by the integral portion 28 that has a camming surface 30. The tilt cap structure 24 is secured to the band 14 by a strap hinge 20. The entire structure 10 is made of plastic or of other suitable materials that may be resiliently deformed and which material has a structural memory that returns the deformed structure to its original configuration.

The fingers 16 are expanded outwardly by applying camming force to the camming surface 38 that moves the tip portions 36 outwardly into the space 18 between the fingers l6 and the band 14. This camming force is applied by moving the tilt cap 24 downward and forcing camming surface 30 against the camming surface 38. In the position illustrated in FIG. 1, the tilt cap 24 is in the locksealed condition with the sealing lips 32 and 34 coacting to seal the inner volume of the container 10. In this position, the camming surfaces 30 and 38 bear slightly against each other and exert spring force to assist in forcing the lockseal lips 32 and 34 together. The inward projecting edges 40 of the tips 36 form a restricted channel opening 37 that is smaller than the diameter of the tablets or pills 44. However, upon inward movement of the cap 24 by finger pressure or the like, the camming surface 30 coacts with the camming surface 30 to force the fingertips 36 outwardly enlarging channel 37 and allowing, for example, tablet 42 to move through the channel 37 and into the receptacle 26, which is formed by the inner surface of cap 24 and a portion of the finger tips 36 when the cap is in the closed position. When pressure is released on the cap 24, then the fingertips 36 return to their original position narrowing the channel 37 that prevents a second pill from moving out of the container. The cap member 24 is then unsnapped in the manner illustrated in FIG. 2 by prying upwardly on the ring member 22 at a location opposite to the hinge strap 20. With cap removed, two receptacle volumes 26 and 27 are provided. Receptacle volume 26 is formed by the inner surface of the recess in the cap 24 and receptacle volume 27 is formed by the camming surface 38, the inner walls of the band 14 and the lip 34. The tablet 42 is then removed in the normal manner from the receptacle volume 26 or 27.

In normal operation, inward pressure is applied to cap 24 while the container 10 is in an inverted position. This allows tablet 42 to gravitationally pass through the enlarged channel 37. When this pressure is released, the cap 24 is forced outward in'an axial direction by the combined force of the spring return tension and camming action of the fingers 16 and surfaces 38 against cap surface 30 and assisted by the secondary camming surfaces 23 and 24 coacting respectively with lips 30 and 34. The cap 24 may then be opened while the container 10 is in the inverted position allowing easy access to the pill 42 and yet preventing further spilling of pills through channel 37. In this inverted position contaminants are restricted from passing into the internal volume of the container 10. The lockseal camming grooves 31 and 23 provide limited axial movement of the cap 24 to only that movement necessary to achieve camming of the fingers 16 and to assure resilient pressure in locksealing the cap 24. Inward axial movement of the cap 24 is also limited by the radial movement of finger 16 in space 18.

In a modified and simplified structure, see FIG. 3, a cylindrical container 50 has an enlarged head 72 at its open end with a shoulder 54 that coacts with a ring portion 52 of the band member 63. Band member 63 has downward projecting fingers 64 with inwardly directed tip projections 66. Each of the fingers are separated by a slit, as previously described in FIGS. 1 and 2. A cap 58, that is secured by hinge strap 56 to ring 52, has a receptacle portion 70 and 71 with divergent projecting sides that terminate in a locking lip 60. The locking lip 60 coacts with lip 62 on the diaphragm member 63.

In operation of this embodiment, the cap member 58 in the normal closed and locksealed position is spaced from the diaphragm structure 63 as illustrated in FIG. 3. Cam surface 57 is positioned adjacent the locking lip 62 and resiliently biases the cap 58 upwardly forming a lockseal between the lip portions 60 and 62. Upon movement of the cap 58 inwardly, the cam surface or conical surface 57 moves against lip 62 causing lip 62 and diaphragm 63 to move downwardly and inwardly and thereby moves the tip projections 66 radially outward enlarging channel 69 and allowing, for example, pill 68 to move into the receptacle 70 or 71. Upon releasing the pressure against cap 58, the cam surface 57 biases the cap 58 outwardly again locksealing the container in the manner previously described. The cap member 58 may then be opened by thumb pressure or by moving a fingernail under the side opposite the hinge strap 56 and prying the cap member 58 out of the snap and lockseal position. The tablet 68 is then removed from the receptacle 70 or 71 in the manner previously described. It may be noted that the receptacle 71 defined by the projections 66 of the fingers 53 and receptacle 70 are capable of accepting one pill or tablet 68 regardless of the position of the tablet within the receptacles 70 and 71. By axial enlargement of the receptacle volume 71. the combined receptacle volume of receptacles 70 and 71 may be made to hold any desired low number of tablets. Upon depressing cap 58, the tablets may be moved within container 50 in an inverted position with sufficient agitation to obtain the desired tablets in the receptacles 70 and 71. Also as illustrated in FIG. 3, the tablet 68 may be round and still be accepted into the receptacles 70 and 71.

Referring to FIG. 4, another simplified container closure comprises a structure that may be used on existing tablet bottles or the like, such as known aspirin tablet containers. The neck 74 may have any type of outer surface configuration that is suitable for coacting with threaded caps, snap-on caps, or the like. The container closure structure comprises an outer wall 78 having a lower end portion 82 that frictionally engages the inside surface of the bottle holding the container closure in position. The wall 78 has an upper flange 91 that rests on the upper end of the neck 74. A plurality of fingers 77 having enlarged side ends 84 and slots 80 therebetween are secured to band 78. The ends 84 provide a reduced in size channel opening 97 that prevents the passage of pills, tablets, or the like therethrough into the receptacle volume 90. The cap 76 is secured to the wall 78 by a narrow hinge strap 98. Cap 76 has a body portion with a downward projecting cylindrical wall 88 that has a cam surface 87 that abuts against the cam surface 89 on the ends 84. The edge of the cap 76 opposite the hinge strap 98, has a hook portion 101 that hooks over an outwardly projecting rim portion 103 on the flange 91 providing means for latching the cap 76 with a lockseal connection of lips 92 and 96.

In operation, the latched cap 76 is pressed downward with the bottle being in the inverted position. The adjacent cam surfaces 87 and 89 move the ends 84 of fingers 77 outward expanding channel 97 and allowing tablets, pills, and the like to pass into the receptacle 90. The cap member 76 is then snapped from the container by pulling the latch lip 101.

lt is often desirable to provide a means for tapping a given number of tablets from a pill or tablet container. 1n the embodiment of FIG. 5, a bore in the container 100 is formed by a plurality of concentrically arranged fingers 104 that have adjacent inner edge surfaces 103 that taper inwardly providing a constricted volume that is continuous and terminates at the prime camming surface 112. The constricted volume is smaller than the diameter of the tablets to be dispersed and yet passes a tablet when the container is tapped on its lower end or is shaken sufficiently to cause a tablet to move through the constricted volume.

To the band 102 is attached the fingers 104 at 134, as is the container wall 132 at 138. The open end of the band 102 has a lip 108 that coacts with an outward projecting lip 110 on the cap 124. A groove 114 is provided in the band 102 for receiving axial movement of the lip 110 of the cap 124. in the manner previously described, the tablets 120 may be tapped into the receptacle portion 118 and then the cap 124 may be opened by exerting force against surface 126. Additional tablets 121 or 128 may be removed from the container 100 by tapping the container 100 with the cap portion 124 removed.

' Also, tablets may be passed into the receptacle portion 118 without tapping by pressing against the cap 124 and moving it inwardly in the manner described. This moves the fingers 104 radially outwardly by coaction of cam surfaces 112 and 116, as permitted by the slots 130. Tablet 120 then moves into the receptacle portion 118 with tablet 121 Still being held in position when the cap 124 is released and moved axially by the return movement of the fingers 104. Additionally, the inward axial movement of fingers 104 and the cam surface 112 drives the cap 124 outwardly with sufficient force to increase the lockseal contact pressure between lips 108 and 110.

in another embodiment of the invention, see F 16$. 6, 7 and 8, a standard cap structure is utilized in which the container 150 has a standard radial annular projection 152a and a standard snap cap 154 with a skirt 156a and an inner annular lip 1580 designed to coact with standard projection 152a of the container, so as to lock and seal the container when the cap is closed.

The container closure 160 has an inner annular lip 1581: designed to coact with the standard projection 152a of the container so as to firmly lockseal the container closure 160 to the container 150. in effect, the container closure 160 has a skirt 1561: similar to skirt 156a and a radial shoulder 162 which coacts with the end 164 of the container 150 to complete the locksealing of the container 150 to the container closure 160. The outside dimensional surfaces of projection 152b are the same as for the standard projection of 152a, so that the cap 154 may be snapped into place over projection 152a without the container closure, or over 152b when the container closure is in place.

The plurality of fingers have free ends 172 with inwardly directed tip portions 174 that form the restricted channel to the passage of tablets therethrough. The fingers 170 are secured through a radially slotted band-shaped structure 176 that is integral with the projection 152b ,skirt 156b and pro jection 158b. The fingers 170 are separated by slits 182 that extend as radial slots into the band structure 176 as illustrated. A receptacle volume 178 for receiving and containing tablets 166 and 168 is formed by fingers 170, tip portions 174 forming the restricted channel, and the inner surface of the cap 154 that faces the receptacle volume.

in this embodiment the camming surfaces are formed by that portion 184 of the inner surface 180 of the cap 154 that is in proximity with the external band surface 1700. Cap 154 is made of a resilient material, such as a suitable plastic, and when pressed inward as illustrated in FIG. 8, the band portion 176 deforms sufficiently to expand the legs 170 outwardly causing the restricted channel to expand as illustrated. Thus cap 154, that closes the container 150, has a camming surface 184 for being forced against and coacting with the finger band camming surface 170a that sufficiently expands the channel formed by projections 174 outwardly against the biasing means of band 176 so that funneling surfaces 177 function to funnel the tablets into the expanded channel and to be passed therethrough.

After the tablets have passed through the expanded channel into the receptacle volume 178 as illustrated in FIG. 8, and the pressure on cap 156 is removed, the resilience of the structure forces the legs 170 and tips 174 back into the constricted channel position illustrated in FIG. 6, thus preventing additional tablets from entering the receptacle volume 178. When the user desires to obtain the tablets 166 and 168, he merely pries off cap 154 and drops the tablets from the receptacle volume 178 into his hand or directly into another container for further dispensing. Once the tablets have been dispensed and the cap replaced, the closure is then ready to dispense additional tablets.

in the modified embodiment of the invention of F lGS. 9, l0 and 11, the container 200 has a standard radially annular projection 202 which is capable of receiving a substantially standard snap cap as described relative to F 108. 6, 7 and 8. A snap cap 210 has a skirt 206 with an annular lip 207 that is designed to coact with the standard projection 202 of the container 200, so as to lock and seal the container 200 when the cap 210 is closed. The cap 210 has a receptacle portion 228 with a receptacle volume 212 therein for receiving, for example, tablet 234 therein. The container closure 208 has an inner annular lip 209 designed to coact with the standard projection 202 of the container 200 so as to firmly lockseal the container closure 208 to the container 200. Thus as previously described relative to FIGS. 6, 7 and 8, the container closure 208 has a skirt portion 211 similar to skirt portion 206 and a radial shoulder 215 which coacts with the end of the container 200 to complete the locksealing of the container 200 to the container closure 208.

The plurality of fingers 218 have free ends 214 with inwardly directed tip portions 219 that form a restricted channel to the passage of tablets therethrough. The fingers 218 are secured through a radially slotted band-shaped structure 200 that is integral with projection 232 and skirt 211. The fingers 218 are separated by slits 230 that extend as radial slots into the band structure 220 as illustrated. A receptacle volume 237 for receiving and containing, as for example, tablets 236 and 239 is formed by fingers 218, tip portion 214 forming the restricted channel and the receptacle volume 212 of the receptacle 218 of cap 210.

In this embodiment the camming surfaces as described relative to FIGS. 6, 7 and 8 are formed by the inner surface 224 of the outer radial rim portion 226 of the cap 210 that is in prox imity with the external band surface 222 of the band 220. Cap 210 and the container closure 208 are made of a resilient material, such as a suitable plastic, and when pressed inwardly as illustrated in FIGS. and 11, the band portion 220 deforms sufficiently to expand the legs 218 outwardly causing the restricted channel formed by the tips 214 to expand as illustrated allowing tablets 234 and 236 to pass therethrough. Thus cap 210, that closes the container 200, has a camming surface 224 for being forced against and coacting with the finger band camming surface 222 that sufficiently expands the channel formed by projections 214 outwardly against the biasing means of the band 220, so that funneling surface 216 functions to funnel the tablets into the expanded channel and be passed therethrough. After the tablets have passed through the expanded channel into the receptacle volume 237 and 212 as illustrated in FIG. 9 and the pressure on the cap 210 is removed, the resilience of the structure forces the legs 218 and tips 214 back into the constricted channel position illustrated in FIG. 9, thus preventing additional tablets from entering the receptacle volume 237 and 212. When the user desires to obtain the tablets, such as tablets 234, 236 and 239, he merely inserts his thumb into the notched portion 250 contacting the edge 252 of the cap 210, prying the cap 210 off of the container closure 208 and dropping the tablets from the receptacle volumes 212 and 237 into his hand.

In operation of the embodiment of FIGS. 9, 10 and 11, the structure as illustrated in the inverted position is moved where the edge 255 of the cap portion 210 contacts a relatively hard or firm surface 254 placing pressure at the edge of the projecting portion 255. This causes the interrelating camming surfaces to coact to move the fingers as illustrated thus opening the right-hand side of the restricted channel. Then by rocking the container cap under the downward pressure to a vertical position as illustrated in FIG. 11, all the fingers 218 and surfaces 216 are moved to open the restricted channel. By continuation of the rocking motion, the fingers on the left side will next be sequentially moved in the manner opposite to that illustrated in FIG. 10. This results in a nonuniform mechanical disturbance of the tablets by the finger tip portion 214 and surfaces 216 and the funneling surface action, to cause the tablets to gravitationally fall through the expanded channel into the receptacle. This operation functions to break up and free jammed pills or tablets in the container 200, which jamming sometimes occurs at the throat end of the bottle or container 200 when the container isin the inverted position. Thus this action assures that a predetermined number of tablets, three as illustrated in these embodiments, will be delivered to the receptacle each time the container is inverted and pressure is applied to the cap.

Further it may be recognized that pressure may be applied by hand against the receptacle portion 228 to accomplish opening of the channel through finger tips 214, or the channel may be opened dispensing tablets substantially as illustrated in FIG. 11 by merely applying direct axial pressure onto the cap portion 210. This embodiment does allow tablets to be dispensed into the receptacle portions 237 and 212 without having to apply pressure by hand against the end 210 of the cap portion 210. This is particularly advantageous to arthritic users of the tablets or the dispensing of the tablets into the container at night or under poorly lighted conditions.

Referring now to FIGS. 12 and 13, there is illustrated additional, modifications of the structures generally illustrated in FIGS. 3 and 4. In these embodiments, it should be understood that only one side of the cylindrical, sectional construction is illustrated providing only a partial view of the cylindrical composite structure. Referring to FIG. 12, a cylindrical container 206 for containing pills, tablets, and the like, has a circumferential end 207 that coacts with a downwardly projecting ring 216 forming a secured seal and lock therebetween. The band 224 in this configuration consists of vertical projections 226, ring 216, and the ring 223. The slits that form the fingers may be extended through ring 223, and into the band 224 to a point at 228. Band 224 has attached thereto downwardly pro jecting and concentrically arranged fingers with enlarged tips 214 that form a constricted channel opening in the manner previously described. A cap portion 208 has an internal pill receptacle volume 210 and has a lip 218 that coacts with lip 219 to form a locking seal. Upon downward movement of cap member 208, the adjacent camming surfaces 220 and 222 cause ring 223 to move inwardly and the band 224 to be depressed downwardly moving the tips 214 outward and expanding the channel opening for passage of tablets therethrough in the manner previously described. A thin strap hinge 212 secures the cap member 208 to the container closure structure.

Referring to FIG. 13, a similar cylindrical container 230 is fixed to a downwardly projecting rim 232 that has an inwardly directed band 247 to which is secured a plurality of downwardly and angularly projecting and cylindrically arranged fingers 239 and tips 240. The fingers 239 have slits therebetween. Downward movement of the cap portion 236 forces cam surface 246 against the angular finger structure 244 moving the finger tips 240 outwardly and enlarging the channel therethrough. The camming surface 246 and the resilient spring action of fingers 239 and band 247 create a spring-forced lockseal between the adjacent lips 248. Hinge strap 234 holds the cap member 236 to the container 230.

Having described my invention, 1 now claim:

1. A tabletor other object-dispensing closure device for closing the dispensing opening in a tablet container comprismg,

a plurality of expandable fingers circumferentially arranged in the dispensing opening of. the tablet container and including biasing means for resiliently biasing said fingers into a channel that restricts the passage of tablets therethrough,

a cap for closing said container opening,

said cap in the position of closing said container opening and the channel of said fingers in the restricted condition, forming a tablet-holding receptacle volume therebetween,

means for moving said fingers outwardly against the force of said biasing means to expand said channel from the restricted condition and pass tablets through said channel into said receptacle,

a band-shaped structure for supporting said fingers and securing said fingers to the container,

each of said fingers has an elongated length and are separated by slits with free ends that extend substantially parallel to the axis of the dispensing opening,

one end of each of said fingers is secured to said band with said free ends capable of free resilient radial movement,

said band has an opening within an inner circular edge,

and said cap has a conical camming surface that abuts against said circular edge, which circular edge resiliently deforms in response to inward movement of said cap and moves said fingers radially outward enlarging said channel.

2. A tabletor other object-dispensing closure device for closing the dispensing opening in a tablet container comprising,

a plurality of expandable fingers circumferentially arranged in the dispensing opening of the tablet container and including biasing means for resiliently biasing said fingers into a channel that restricts the passage of tablets therethrough,

a cap for closing said container opening,

said cap in the position of closing said container opening and the channel of said fingers in the restricted condition, fonning a tablet-holding receptacle volume therebetween.

means for moving said fingers outwardly against the force of said biasing means to expand said channel from the restricted condition and pass tablets through said channel into said receptacle,

a band-shaped structure for supporting said fingers and securing said fingers to the container,

each of said fingers has an elongated length and are separated by slits with free ends that extend substantially parallel to the axis of the dispensing opening,

one end of each of said fingers is secured to said band with said free ends capable of free resilient radial movement,

said band has a resilient radial portion,

said cap has a resilient radial portion that substantially abuts said band radial portion,

and whereby the application of axial force against said cap radial portion causes said radial portions to contact and move said band radial portion axially inward biasing said fingers in a radially outward direction.

3. A tablet-dispensing closure device as claimed in claim 2 in which,

said band has a skirt with circumferential outer lip that fits over the outer surface of the container opening,

and said cap has a circumferential outer lip that fits over the outer surface of said skirt.

4. A tablet-dispensing closure device as claimed in claim 2,

in which,

said band has a centered opening therein that communicates with said channel,

and said cap has a receptacle adjacent said centered open- 5. A tablet-dispensing closure device as claimed in claim 4,

in which,

said cap receptacle projects axially outward from said cap radial portion,

and whereby contact with one side edge of the outer end surface of said cap receptacle forces one side of said cap radial portion to contact one side edge of said band radial portion forcing adjacent fingers to move radially outward to a greater extent than others of said fingers.

6. A tablet-dispensing closure device as claimed in claim 5,

in which,

said fingers have radially inward projecting tip portions at said free ends with sloping funneling surfaces facing axially into the container, whereby said radial movement of said free ends effectively coact with tablets in moving tablets to break up tablet jamming, thus freeing tablets and funneling same through said sloping funneling surfaces into said tablet-holding receptacle volume when the container is in the inverted condition.

I! II i k i

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2086296 *Mar 3, 1937Jul 6, 1937Emile Gilbert CharlesBox unloading device
US2957503 *Oct 21, 1958Oct 25, 1960Stifter John JPill dispenser
US3182694 *Oct 16, 1961May 11, 1965Raimo Anthony SPill dispenser
US3409172 *Mar 20, 1967Nov 5, 1968Erik Fuglsang MadsenTablet-dispensers
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3833147 *Jul 3, 1972Sep 3, 1974Borsum ASafety dispensing container closure
US4653668 *Jun 27, 1985Mar 31, 1987Merck & Co., Inc.Medicament dispensing container
US6726058 *Jun 20, 2002Apr 27, 2004Csp Technologies, Inc.Dispenser for solid objects
US7147130 *May 6, 2005Dec 12, 2006Noel ClarkSingle dose pill dispensing system
US7207464Apr 15, 2003Apr 24, 2007Createchic AgEffervescent tablet dispenser
WO2003086901A1 *Apr 15, 2003Oct 23, 2003Brenner AndreasEffervescent tablet dispenser
Classifications
U.S. Classification221/289, 221/256
International ClassificationB65D83/04
Cooperative ClassificationB65D83/049
European ClassificationB65D83/04F