US 3637117 A
The device comprises a keg adapter mounted about a keg opening and a dispenser coupler releasably coupled to the keg adapter having gas inlet and beer dispensing outlet passages terminating in two side-by-side probes depending from the coupler. The liquid probe is movably mounted in the coupler and biased in one direction. An inverted J-shaped tube is carried by the coupler in communication with the liquid probe and displacement of the tube moves the liquid probe in the opposite direction to open the beer valve in the keg adapter. The gas passage is in communication with a hand operated portable plunger-type pump whereby gas is provided through the keg adapter into the keg.
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
1:11 States Patent 1151 3.6 1
Johnston 1 1 Jan. 25, 1972 154] KEG TAPIPHNG DEVICE 3,194,451 7/1965 Fletcher ..222/400.7 I 2,223,012 11/1940 Wanderski et a1 ....222/400.7
 mentor: Mack Mmswn, Romng H1115 Cahf- 2,312,067 2 1943 Bates ...222/400.sx
 Assignee: Republic Corporation, Los Angeles, Calif 3,525,456 8/1970 Prussin et al .,222/402.18 X
 Filed: 1969 Primary Examiner-Stanley H. Tollberg  pp 7 70 Attorney-LeBlanc & Shur Related U.S. Application Data 1 57] ABSTRACT  Continuati0n-in-part of Ser. No. 773,389, Nov. 5, The device comprises a keg adapter mounted about a keg 1968, Pat. No. 3,550,818.
References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS Inlay, 11101.
opening and a dispenser coupler releasably coupled to the keg adapter having gas inlet and beer dispensing outlet passages terminating in two side-by-side probes depending from the coupler. The liquid probe is movably mounted in the coupler and biased in one direction. An inverted J-shaped tube is carried by the coupler in communication with the liquid probe and displacement of the tube moves the liquid probe in the opposite direction to open the beer valve in the keg adapter. The gas passage is in communication with a hand operated portable plunger-type pump whereby gas is provided through the keg adapter into the keg.
9 Claims, 5 Drawing Figures PATENTEUJANZSIQYZ 30,537,117
INVENTOR MABK S, JOHNSTON ATTORNEYS PATENTEU M25 19m SHIN 2 HF FIG. 3
llllillilillllllill s llliifilflllil'll a mm PATENTEB JANZS I872 SHEET 30F 3 ATTORNEYS KEG TAPPING DEVICE This application is a continuation-impart of my copending applications Ser. No. 773,389 filed Nov. 5, 1968, now U.S. Pat. No. 3,550,818, Ser. No. 851,008 filed Aug. 18, 1969, and application Ser. No. 864,448 filed Oct. 7, 1969: application Ser. No. 773,389 being, in turn, a continuation-in-part of my copending applications Ser. No. 708,404 filed Feb. 26, 1968 (now abandoned) and Ser. No. 587,627 filed Oct. 18, 1960, now U.S. Pat. No. 3,422,448 issued Jan. 14, 1969; said copending application Ser. No. 708,404 being a continuationin-part of copending application Ser. No. 587,627: application Ser. No. 864,448 being, in turn, a continuation-in-part of copending application Ser. No. 851,008 filed Aug. 18, 1969 for KEG TAPPING DEVICE, copending application Ser. No. 814,883 filed Mar. 26, 1969, now Pat. No. 3,563,424 for BEER TAP, copending application Ser. No. 783,484 filed Dec. 13, 1968 for KEG TAPPING DEVICE and copending application Ser. No. 773,406 filed Nov. 5, 1968 (now abandoned) for KEG TAPPING DEVICE; application Ser. No. 851,008 being, in turn, a continuation-in-part of copending application Ser. No. 783,484 filed Dec. 13, 1968, for KEG TAPPING DEVICE, which application is in turn a continuation-in-part of copending application Ser. No. 773,406 filed Nov. 5, 1968 for KEG TAPPING DEVICE; the applications, Ser. Nos. 783,484 and 773,406 being each, in turn a continuation-in-part of copending application Ser. No. 676,291, filed Oct. 18, 1967 for BEER TAP (now abandoned), and which latter application is in turn a continuation-impart of copending application Ser. No. 611,610 issued Nov. 12, 1968 as U.S. Pat. No. 3,410,458), filed Jan. 25, 1967 for BEER TAPPING DEVICE; said application Ser. No. 611,610 being in turn a continuation-in-part of application Ser. No. 587,627, copending application Ser. No. 587,627, being, in turn, a continuation of then copending application Ser. No. 406,682 filed Oct. 27, 1964, now abandoned.
This invention relates to an improved beer siphoning device and particularly relates to an improved portable beer siphoning device.
Many problems are associated with the dispensing of beer from conventional kegs, among which are problems associated with cleaning the kegs after use, providing fresh beer at the dispensing establishment without contamination by the tapping devices, preventing economic loss and spillage due to surging of the beer through the tapping device as upon initial tapping of keg as well as the general problem of providing tapping devices which are readily and inexpensively manufactured and compatible with many existing kegs. These problems are fully described in my aforementioned applications, Ser. Nos. 587,627 and 406,682. In such latter applications, there are described and illustrated novel, improved beer tapping devices which eliminate and/or minimize the foregoing and other disadvantages commonly prevailing in the beverage dispensing industry and the manufacture and use of prior tapping devices.
There is an ever present problem existing in readily providing satisfactory draft beer at locations remote from facilities especially equipped to handle and dispense draft beer such as those facilities usually provided in restaurants, taverns, and the like. My aforementioned copending applications, Ser. Nos. 773,389, 587,627 and 406,682 disclose a portable beer siphoning device which is particularly adapted for use with the keg adapters also therein disclosed. These adapters may be described as ofa single probe type wherein the associated coupler heads carry a probe receivable within the keg adapters for the purpose of opening the liquid valve in the adapter. The picnic type or portable pump described and claimed in my copending application, Ser. No. 773,389 has proven a very satisfactory portable beer siphoning device for attachment to the keg at locations remote from suitable gas pressure sources and other dispensing facilities, the usual gas pressure sources being rather cumbersome and dangerous in operation by unskilled hands.
In applications Ser. Nos. 851,008 and 864,448, there are also described and illustrated novel and improved beer tapping devices, including improved keg adapter assemblies for semipermanently disposition within the dispensing openings of the kegs. These latter tapping devices have various novel features, including enlarged gas passages, improved liquid and gas valves, adapter body constructions which are simply and economically manufactured and other features as well as coupler assemblies designed for connection with the keg adapter assemblies at the dispensing establishment and which also include various novel features. The types ofsiphoning devices disclosed in these latter applications may be conveniently characterized as a dual-probe type wherein the keg adapter, which is semipermanently installed in the keg, has a pair of side-by-side spaced parallel openings through its outer end for receiving a pair of probes on a coupler head. The openings provide respective gas and liquid passages into the keg, each passage containing a normally closed valve. When the coupler head is finally secured to the keg adapter, the probes in conjunction with the keg adapter passages provide respective gas inlet and liquid outlet passages in communication with the keg whereby beer under pressure can be drawn from the keg. It will be appreciated that the coupler heads provided with the keg adapters disclosed in these applications are particularly adapted for use with the large, rather cumbersome, and unwieldly tanks containing air or CO under pressure and other dispensing equipment such as flexible hose lines, faucets, etc. Thus, the kegs in which these types of siphon devices are employed are necessarily utilized in taverns and other beer dispensing establishments fully equipped with beer dispensing facilities and have not, heretofore, been employed at locations remote from such facilities.
It is therefore a primary object of the present invention to provide a novel, improved, portable, siphoning device for use with siphon devices of the type having; keg adapters charac terized by a pair of side-by-side gas and liquid bores or passages and having a normally closed valve in each passage. To this end, the present invention provides a coupler head having an axial bore for receiving a member having a laterally offset depending liquid probe. The member is mounted for axial movement within the bore and is biased in one direction by a spring engaging between the underside of the member and a wall portion of the coupler head. A gas probe also depends from the lower end of the coupler head in side-by-side spaced parallel relation with the liquid probe. An inverted .lshaped tube is secured at the opposite end of the coupler head in communication with the liquid probe and is adapted to pivot laterally to depress the member carrying the liquid probe against the bias of the spring. The coupler head also carries an arm having a gas passage in communication with the gas probe, the arm being adapted for connection with a manually operated, portable air pump. Thus, when the coupler head is secured to the keg, the probes are received within the dual passages of the keg adapter with the gas valve being immediately opened and maintained in an open position by the gas probe. After operating the hand pump whereby air is provided through the coupler head and keg adapter into the keg to pressurize the latter, beer can be dispensed from the keg by manually pivoting or depressing the inverted J-shaped tube to thereby depress the liquid probe. By depressing the liquid probe, it engages and opens the liquid valve in the keg adapter. Beer thus flows under pressure from the keg through the keg adapter and through the liquid probe and J-shaped tube in the coupler head and issues from a spout comprising the outer end of the J-shaped tube. Upon release of the tube, it is spring returned to permit displacement of the liquid probe back into its normal position under the bias of the liquid valve spring which closed the liquid valve.
These and further objects and advantages of the present invention will become more apparent upon reference to the following specification, appended claims, and drawings wherein;
FIG. 1 is a diagrammatic view of a beer keg and a tapping device therefor constructed in accordance with the present invention;
FIG. 2 is a fragmentary vertical cross-sectional view of the keg adapter and coupler therefor prior to assembly with the keg adapter being illustrated in final securement within the keg opening;
FIG. 3 is a fragmentary vertical cross-sectional view of the keg adapter and coupler therefor in final securement one with the other and prior to actuation of the dispenser on the couler; p FIG. 4 is a fragmentary vertical cross-sectional view similar to FIG. 3 and illustrating the tapping device in an actuated position for opening the liquid valve in the keg adapter; and
FIG. 5 is an exploded perspective view of the coupler hereof.
Referring now to FIG. 1, there is illustrated a conventional beer keg having an opening 12 in its top wall 14 and which opening receives a keg adapter A, the adapter A being semipermanently installed in keg 10 at the brewery. An improved portable dispenser coupler unit B forming a part of the beer tapping device hereof may be readily connected with keg adapter A to form a complete tapping assembly as hereinafter amplified. As previously indicated, coupler B is of the type which carries a portable gas pressure source, for example, the air pump P. The coupler B is adapted to be releasably secured to keg adapter A and with coupling B carrying its own gas pressure source, the keg 10 can be tapped at locations remote from beer dispensing establishments, taverns and the like wherein the conventional air of CO pressurized bottles and other keg tapping equipment such as faucets and the like are not readily available or is inconvenient to utilize.
Keg adapter A may be of the type described and illustrated in my copending application Ser. No. 851,008 filed Aug. 18, I969 and the following specification will describe the improved portable keg tapping device hereof as utilized with the keg adapter disclosed in that application, the disclosure of that application being incorporated herein in its entirety by reference thereto. It will, however, be appreciated that other types of keg adapters may be employed in the tapping device hereof, for example, the keg adapter described and illustrated in my copending application, Ser. No. 864,448, filed Oct. 7, I969 or in US. Pat. No. 3,228,413. Referring now to FIG. 1, keg adapter A as fully disclosed in my copending application Ser. No. 851,008, is receivable within keg opening 12 from outside the keg and is semipermanently secured therein at the brewery prior to filling by means to be described. It will be appreciated that keg adapter A functions to seal the keg during the time interval between filling and tapping with portable coupler unit B being connected to keg adapter A at any desired location remote from conventional and convenient beer tapping facilities for withdrawing beer from the keg through the keg adapter under pressure provided by the portable air pump P.
Briefly, keg adapter A comprises a cylindrical siphon body 16 having a diameter substantially conforming to the internal diameter of opening 12 through the upper keg wall 14 as to be receivable therethrough in close fitting relation. The upper end of siphon body 34 is provided with an outwardly extending stepped flange 18 having an annular recess 20 formed in its under face for receiving an O-ring seal 22. Seal 22 seals keg adapter A about keg opening 12 when the latter is finally secured therein as hereinafter amplified. Siphon body 16 is provided with a pair of liquid and gas passages including respective bores 24 and 26 which extend longitudinally in spaced parallel relation one to the other and eccentrically of the central axis of siphon body 16 to open through the upper face thereof. The lower portion of bore 24 includes an enlarged diameter cylindrical chamber 28, the axis of which is inwardly offset from the axis of liquid bore 24 and also outwardly offset from the central axis of siphon body 16. Chamber 28 further includes an enlarged lower portion 30 forming an annular shoulder 32 with chamber 28, the portion 30 being internally threaded as at 34 adjacent the lower end of body. 16. The lower end of bore 26 terminates intermediate the ends of siphon body 16 in a cutout 36 formed in the side of body 16.
Liquid and gas valves generally indicated at 38 and 40 respectively are provided in the liquid and gas passages 24 and 26. Particularly, liquid valve 38 is similar in construction to the liquid valves disclosed in my previous application, Ser. No. 406,682 filed Oct. 27, I964, which was abandoned in favor of copending application Ser. No. 587,627 filed Oct. l8, I966, issued as US. Pat. No. 3,422,248 on Jan. 14, I969. Specifically, valve 38 comprises a valve seat 42 comprised ofa chuck washer preferably formed of a plastic material, and having a central opening 44. Upper marginal portions of valve seat 42 seat against shoulder 32. The marginal portion of the opposite annular face of seat 42 includes an annular shoulder portion against which the upper end of an externally threaded ferrule 46 bears whereby seat 42 is retained in enlarged diameter portion 30. The washer 42 has a stepped lower annular face. The lower end of ferrule 46 receives the upper end ofa siphon tube 48, the latter being arcuate in configuration and having a flared end indicated at 50 in FIG. 1. Valve 38 further comprises a valve plate 52 having a lower depending stem 54 about which is received the upper end of a helical spring 56. The lower end of spring 56 seats against an internal shoulder formed about the lower end ferrule 46. Spring 56 biases valve plate 52 into sealing engagement against the lower stepped annular face of valve seat 42.
Valve plate 52 has a bifurcated stem 58 extending through the opening 44 of valve seat 42 with the upper end of stem 58 having shoulder portions indicated at 60. A sleeve 62 is slideably received within the liquid bore 24 and includes a lower radially inwardly extending foot portion 66 received within chamber 28. Foot portion 66 is provided with a bore as at 68, the axis of bore 68 being disposed radially inwardly of the axis of sleeve 62. Bifurcated stem 58 includes a pair of fingers 59 extending within bore 68. In the condition of the keg illustrated in FIGS. 2 and 3, that is, with the keg adapter A sealing about keg opening 12, valve plate 52 is biased into sealing position about valve seat 32 with the sleeve 62 being disposed in its uppermost position in bore 24. In this position, foot portion 66 seats on shoulder portions 60 with the fingers 59 being disposed within bore 68. The upper end of sleeve 62 terminates short of the upper face of body 16 for reasons hereinafter amplified. It will be appreciated that movement of sleeve 62 inwardly of the keg depresses valve plate 52 away from sealing engagement about valve seat 42 whereby a fluid passage is obtained from the keg through the siphon tube 48 into ferrule 46, and through the bifurcated valve into sleeve 62 and bore 24.
There is provided in the gas passage 26 a sleeve 68, the upper end of which lies flush with the upper end of siphon 50 body 16. Sleeve 68 terminates at its lower end in an enlarged diameter bore 70 (FIG. 3) defining a shoulder 72. Sleeve 68 is preferably bonded as by an apoxy in bore 26. Disposed within the lower end of bore 26 and spaced inwardly from the lower end of sleeve 68 is a nipple 74. Nipple 74 is suitably secured within bore 26 as by an epoxy. Nipple 74 is centrally bored as at 76 and its upper annular face provides a seat for the lower end ofa helical spring 78. The upper end of spring 78 engages about the depending stem on a poppet-type valve comprised of a valve plate 80 and an upwardly extending cylindrical portion 82. A plurality of radial openings 84 are spaced about cylindrical portion 82. An O ring seal 86 seats about the margin of valve plate 80 and about cylindrical portion 82 and, in the valve closed position illustrated in FIG. 2, seals against the walls of the enlarged diameter bore 70. Also, in the gas valve closed position illustrated in FIG. 2, the upper end of cylindrical portion 82 seats against shoulder 72 and has a marginal portion which extends radially inwardly beyond the inner wall of sleeve 68 for purposes as will become clear.
A gas check valve 88 is provided within cutout portion 36 of siphon body 16 adjacent the lower end of the gas passage and comprises a flexible sleeve or envelope 90, preferably formed of silicone rubber (gum rubber and other plastic materials may also be employed), having a closed lower end and an open upper end. Sleeve 90 comprises a generally cylindrical upper portion 9] suitably sealed about the lower projecting end of nipple 74 and a tapering flattened lower portion 92. A longitudinally extending slit 93 is formed through the outer wall of the tapered portion 92 of check valve 88 and it will be appreciated that, when air under pressure is transmitted through sleeve 68 and bore 70 past the open gas valve 41) into nipple 74 and into the envelope 90 of check valve 88, the sides of slit 93 will open permitting the air to flow outwardly into the keg. When the fluid pressure within the keg is equal to or greater than the air pressure applied through keg adapter A, as will be described, this external pressure maintains slit 93 closed precluding ingress of liquid from the keg through the slit into the gas passage of the keg adapter. It will be readily appreciated that additional slits may be provided and that a slit through the lower end wall can be formed. It will be further appreciated that the gas check valve 88 and gas valve 40 lie wholly within the cylindrical confines of adapter body 16 whereby the same may be received through the keg opening 12 from without the keg.
To secure keg adapter A within keg opening 12, there is provided the novel, improved securing means as described and illustrated in my US. Pat. No. 3,422,448 issued Jan. 14, I969. Particularly, the securing means, as seen in FIGS. 3 and 4, include a ring 94 which has its lower end spaced slightly above the top wall 14 of the keg and which is internally threaded as at 96 to receive an externally threaded ring 98. Ring 94 is also externally threaded as at 95. Ring 98 includes a thin wall section 100 which has inwardly and upwardly projecting diametrically opposite tabs 102 formed on its inner periphery. Also formed on the inner periphery of wall section 100 and spaced circumferentially from the tabs 102 are inwardly extending diametrically opposed abutments, not shown, for engagement with a pair of projections, also not shown, depending from the standard peerless-type beer keg flange. Thus, after ring 98 is snapped over the keg flange, keg adapter A is inserted through the keg opening with the O-ring seal 22 finally seating on the annular upper surface ofthe keg flange. Ring 94 is then placed over the upper end of flange 18 of adapter A and threaded down about the externally threaded portion of ring 98. In this fashion, ring 98 is drawn up within the lower inside portion of ring 94 until the upper ends of tab 102 contact the undersides of the keg flanges. Keg adapter A is thus locked within the keg opening with O-ring seal 22 providing a seal about keg opening 12 between the keg adapter and the keg flange.
The novel improved coupler B of the present invention comprises a generally cylindrical head 110 having a central vertically extending chamber or bore 112 and a laterally extending integrally formed nipple 114. Nipple 114 includes a bore 116 in communication at one end with central bore 112 and in communication at its opposite end with the air chamber 117 of pump P. Particularly, the latter outer end portion of nipple 114 is externally threaded as at 118 and threadedly receives the lower internally threaded end 121) of pump P. Pump P may comprise the usual hand operated pump having a piston 122 with a seal 123 and a piston rod 124 terminating externally of the pump in a knob or handle 126, (FIG. 1) whereby reciprocation of piston rod 124 forces air from chamber 117 under pressure into bore 116 and chamber 112.
An annular member 130 is secured about the slightly enlarged lower end of coupler head 110 by means of a snap ring 132. Member 130 retains collar 134 rotatably mounted on coupler head 110. Collar 134 has a plurality of handle portions 136 formed integrally therewith and is internally threaded as at 138 for cooperation with the externally threaded portion 95 of ring 94. A small projection 140 is provided above collar 134 whereby collar 134 is retained on coupler B between member 130 and projection 140. The lower end of coupler head 118 carries an annular seal 142 which may be O-ring of neoprene rubber providing an annular seal between coupler head B and keg adapter A when coupling B is secured to keg adapter A.
The lower end of vertical bore 112 terminates intermediate the ends of coupler head 110 in an integral wall portion 144 through which a pair of openings 146 and 148 are formed. A depending gas probe 150 is suitably secured in coupler B with its upper end within opening 148. Prolbe 150 lies in communication with vertical bore 112 and with the air pump P via bore 116 in nipple 114. The lower end portion of gas probe 150 extends below the lower end of coupler head 110 for insertion within sleeve 70 of keg adapter A. Slideably received within bore opening 146 through wall portion 144 is a liquid probe 152. Probe 152 extends below the lower end of coupler head 110 in spaced side-by-side parallel relation with gas probe 150. Probe 152 extends through opening 146 into chamber 112 with its upper end being suitably secured in an opening formed in the lower end of a cylindrical member 154 slideably received within central bore 112. Member 154 has a central liquid passageway 156 which is laterally offset adjacent its lower end as at 158 for communication with probe 152. The upper end ofmember154 comprises a nipple 160 about which is received the lower or inner end of a flexible, preferably plastic, tube 162 which extends substantially coaxially through a curved inverted generally J-shaped metal tube 164 as seen in FIG. 1. An annular member 166 surrounds the lower end of tube 162 and the nipple 160 of member 154. The upper end of annular member 166 has an outwardly extending flange 168 which lies in engagement with a flange 170 formed on the lower end of metal tube 164.
A collar 174 is threaded about the upper end of head 110 and has central aperture 176. The size of the aperture 176 is such that tube 164 is easily and freely canted within collar 174 with any peripheral portion of flange I170 bearing against the annular shoulder 177 of collar 174 to provide the pivotal axis about which tube 164 cants. Opening 176 is preferably tapered such that sufficient space is provided when the tube 164 is canted. A compression spring is disposed between wall portion 144 of head 110 and the lower face portion ofmember 154 whereby member 154 is normally biased outwardly obtaining the position illustrated in FIGS. 2 and 3. A suitable O ring seal 179 is provided about member 154.
Referring now to FIG. 3, there is illustrated a plurality of beads or balls 180 having varying diameters and disposed within flexible tube 162 for the purpose of improving flow through tube 162 and the quality of the beer issued from beer spout 186 (FIG. 1). Balls 180 are maintained in flexible tube 162 by an elongated wire 182 which is coiled at opposite ends and extends through central openings formed in balls 180. This ball-wire arrangement extends approximately for onehalfthe length of the inverted .l-shaped tube.
When dispenser coupler B is to be secured to keg adapter A, probes 150 and 152 are first inserted within the liquid and gas passages of the keg adapter A. Particularly, the probe 150 is inserted within the bore of sleeve 70 and the liquid probe 152 is inserted within bore 24. When collar 136 is threaded down about ring 94, and O-ring seal 142 engages about the outer face of adapter body 16 about openings 70 and 24, to form a seal therewith, it will be seen that the tip of probe 150 engages the upper margin of portion 82 of poppet valve 48 to depress the latter against the bias of spring 78. Seal 86 is thereby displaced below sleeve 68 and within the larger diameter bore 26 whereby an air passage is provided into the keg through bore 116, in nipple 114, chamber 112, probe 150, sleeve 68, the cylindrical portion 82 and openings 84 of poppet valve 40, bore 26 and bore 76 through nipple 74 and the slit 93 in gas check valve 88. It will be readily appreciated that by manually reciprocating piston 122 in air pump 11, the keg can thus be pressurized. It will also be appreciated when the coupler unit B is secured to the keg adapter A as seen in FIG. 3, the tip of probe 152 is spaced slightly above the upper end of sleeve 62 whereby beer valve 38 remains in its normally closed position preventing outflow of beer from the pressurized keg. To provide beer to the spout 186 at the end of the inverted J-shaped tube 164, tube 164 is displaced laterally as illustrated in FIG. 4 whereby one side of flange 170 comprising the lower end of tube 164 is pivoted downwardly about its diametrically op positely disposed flange portion. This pivoting action is seen in FIG. 4. It will be appreciated that the tube 164 may also be displaced vertically downwardly as seen in FIG. 4 to open the beer valve 38. By thus laterally or vertically displacing or canting tube 164, member 154 and depending probe 152 are dis placed inwardly toward the keg against the bias of spring 178. lnward displacement of probe 152 causes its lower end to engage and displace sleeve 62 inwardly such that the bifurcated valve stem 58 is also displaced inwardly.
In this fashion, valve plate 52 is moved inwardly away from chuck washer 42 against the bias of spring 56 whereby beer under pressure from keg l flows outwardly through the siphon or tap rod 48, into ferrule 46, pass the open liquid valve 38 into sleeve 62 and outwardly through liquid probe 152, passages 158 and 156 in member 154 and into the flexible tube 162 for delivery of beer to spout 186. Upon release of the J-shaped tube 164, spring 178 displaces member 154 axially outwardly to return tube 164 from its canted or vertically displaced beer tapping position to its normally disposed vertically extending position as seen in FIG. 3. Displacement of member 154 outwardly under the bias of spring 178 displaces liquid probe 152 upwardly within bore 24 whereby spring 56 urges valve plate 52 into sealing engagement about chuck washer 42. That is to say, spring 56 causes sleeve 62 to lie in substantial following engagement with probe 152 during its upward movement thus closing the beer valve 38 upon release of tube 164. Thus, to draw beer from the keg tube 164 is manually canted or depressed to open the beer valve. To shut off the beer flow, the tube 164 is merely released whereupon it automatically returns to its vertically disposed position while simultaneously closing the beer valve.
What is claimed and desired to be secured by US. Letters Patent is:
l. A portable dispensing coupler unit adapted for use in tapping a keg or like container for liquid having an opening in which a keg adapter has been installed, said dispensing coupler unit comprising: a coupler head having a chamber therein; a member disposed in said chamber for movement along first and second paths and including a probe projecting from said coupler head with a liquid passage in said probe; means carried by said coupler head for biasing said member for movement along said first path; means extending exterior of said coupler head for moving said member along said second path; gas passage means in said coupler head segregated from said liquid passage and including a second probe projecting from said coupler head in spaced side-byside relation to said first probe; said member having a liquid passage in communication with the liquid passage in said probe; said moving means being coupled to said member and having a liquid passage in communication with the liquid passages in said member and said probe; and said moving means including inner and outer concentric tubular means with said inner means forming a continuation of said liquid passage means in said probe and said member, said coupler head having a shoulder, means securing said moving means to said coupler head including a projection carried by said outer tubular means and engageable against said shoulder, said biasing means normally maintaining said projection in engagement against said shoulder.
2. A portable dispensing coupler unit adapted for use in tapping a keg or like container for liquid having an opening in which a keg adapter has been installed, said dispensing coupler unit comprising: a coupler head having a chamber therein; a member disposed in said chamber for movement along first and second paths and including a probe projecting from said coupler head with a liquid passage in said probe; means carried by said coupler head for biasing said member for movement along said first path; means extending exterior of said coupler head for moving said member along said second path; gas passage means in said coupler head segregated from said liquid passage and including a second probe projecting from said coupler head in spaced side-by side relation to said first probe; said member having a liquid passage in communication with the li uid passage in said probe; said moving means being couple to said member and having a liquid passage in communication with the liquid passages in said member and said probe; and said moving means including tubular means forming a continuation of said liquid passage means in said probe and said member, a plurality of beads in the liquid passage in said tubular means, and means retaining said beads in said liquid passage.
3. A dispensing apparatus for use in tapping a keg or like container for liquids having top, bottom and sidewalls with an opening in one wall of said keg comprising: a keg adapter having a generally cylindrical body adapted to be secured within the keg wall opening and having a pair of laterally spaced passages extending therethrough for the respective transfer of liquid from the inside to the outside of the keg and gas from the outside to the inside of the keg; normally closed valves in said liquid and gas passages; at least portions of said passages adjacent the outer portion of said body defining a pair of openings offset from the central axis of said body and extending in generally parallel relation to said axis; a dispensing coupler unit including means for releasably securing said coupler unit to said keg adapter, said coupler unit including a coupler head having liquid and gas passages therein; a probe carried by said coupler head for movement in first and second directions and defining a portion of said liquid passage in said head, said probe projecting from said coupler head; a second probe projecting from said coupler head in spaced side-byside relation to said first probe and defining a portion of said gas passage in said head; said first and second probes being receivable in the respective openings in said keg adapter when said coupler unit is releasably secured thereto; means carried by said coupler head for normally biasing said liquid probe for movement in said first direction; an element other than a part of said securing means extending exteriorly of said coupler head and coupled to said liquid probe, said element being selectively movable relative to said coupler head between first and second positions after said coupler unit has been fully secured to said keg adapter, said liquid probe being movable in said second direction and against the bias of said biasing means in response to movement of said element from said first position into said second position to open the normally closed liquid valve in the liquid passage in said keg adapter and thereby providing communication between the liquid passages in said keg adapter and said coupler head.
4. Apparatus according to claim 3 including an element in said liquid passage of said keg adapter movable between positions opening and closing said liquid valve. said liquid probe being engageable with said keg adapter element in response to movement in said second direction to open said normally closed liquid valve;
5. Apparatus according to claim 2 wherein said beads comprise balls having various diameters, said retaining means ineluding a wire coiled at opposite ends with its intermediate portion engaging through said balls.
6. Apparatus according to claim 3 wherein said element includes an inverted generally .I-shaped tube carried by said coupler head.
7. Apparatus according to claim 3 wherein said second probe is adapted to open the normally closed gas valve in the gas passage of said keg adapter when said coupler unit and keg adapter are releasably secured one to the other.
8. Apparatus according to claim 3 wherein said adapter, body has a diameter less than the diameter of the keg opening whereby the adapter body is receivable within the keg opening from without the keg.
9. Apparatus according to claim 3 wherein said gas valve includes a gas check valve comprising a closed flexible envelope in communication with said gas passage in said keg adapter, said envelope having an elongated slit formed through a wall thereof.