US 3638689 A
A lightweight, pistol-grip, automatic shutoff dispensing nozzle having a valve mechanism that is finger trigger actuated to control fluid flow through the nozzle with a fluid level sensing means at the discharge of the nozzle for automatically deactivating the valve mechanism upon fluid detection at a predetermined level or upon tilting of the nozzle beyond a predetermined angle thereby precluding fluid flow without resetting the valve mechanism or repositioning of the nozzle.
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Unite States Pater [151 3,638,689
Eklund 5] Feb. 1, 1972  AUTOMATIC DISPENSING NOZZLE 3,323,560 6/1967 Ehlers ..l4l/208  Inventor: Hans Erik Eklund, Malmo, Sweden FOREIGN PATENTS QR APPUCATIONS 1 Assigneer AB Ljungmans Verksmderr Malmo, 948,333 1 1964 Great Britain ..l37/630.l5 Sweden 877,624 9/1961 Great Britain ..l37/630.l5 999,082 7/1965 Great Britain 141/206  My 1969 1,014,867 8/1959 Germany ..l37/630.l5  Appl. No.: 828,940
Primary Examiner-Laverne D. Geiger Assistant Examiner-Edward J. Earls 52 us. or ..141/214, 137/630.l5, 141/225, Anomey Roben Mayer, David Rubin, Raymond 141/208 Majesko, Ray L. Van Winkle, William E. Johnson, Thomas P.  IlIl. CI ..B67d 5/373 Hubbard Jr and Eddie E. Scott  Field of Search ..l37/630.14, 630.15;
l4l/206-2ll,2l4,215,217,213, 225,226; 57 S CT 25l/DlG. l
A lightweight, pistol-grip, automat1c shutoff dlspensmg nozzle  References Cited having a valve mechanism that is finger trigger actuated to control fluid flow through the nozzle with a fluid level sensing UNITED STATES PATENTS means at the discharge of the nozzle for automatically deactivating the valve mechanism upon fluid detection at a 3,088,500 5/1963 Payne X predetermined level or p tilting of the nozzle beyond 3 2,213,488 9/1940 DOWIlCk Ct al. ..137/630.I5 predeermined angle thereby precluding fluid flow wihout 2,929,418 3/1960 Ryan, Jr 141/225 resetting the valve mechanism or repositioning of the nozzle. 3,035,615 5/l962 Pacey ....l4l/225 X 3,052,247 l 1/1962 Botkin ..l4l/225 X 4 Claims, 8 Drawing Figures slsaagses PMENWEU FEB I EH2 SHEET 1 [IF 2 INVENTOR.
HANS ERIK EKLUND attorney- PATENTEDFEB 1m EJ638689 SHEET 2 OF 2 "W IW 63 INVENTOR.
HANS ER IK EKLU ND attorney AUTOMATIC DISPENSING NOZZLE BACKGROUND AND BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION Presently available and commercially used automatic gasoline dispensing nozzles of various types are rather bulky, heavy and awkward to manipulate. Gasoline dispensing selfservice stations have increased appreciably throughout the past several years in many countries for numerous reasons leading to handling of the presently available bulky and heavy dispensing nozzles by women and children for dispensing gasoline. With the ever increasing demands and needs for additional self-service equipment, including preset apparatus, in self-service outlets, more women and children will be using gasoline dispensing self-service facilities.
Increased safety requirements, ease of equipment operation, and minimum maintenance despite abusive handling, will all become demands made upon equipment to be introduced for self-service operation particularly when gasoline is being dispensed by nontechnical untrained and careless people at attended as well as unattended gasoline pumping or dispensing locations. Continuous handling of the dispensing equipment by untrained and nontechnical persons necessitates maximum protection against mishaps and malfunctioning particularly at busy or unattended service stations. Maximum protection against potential spillage, inadvertent overflow, abusive handling, among other hazards, is essential for acceptable commercial operations to comply with present and contemplated safety regulations Many of the presently commercially available automatic shutoff dispensing nozzles may require manipulation by an operator using both hands in view of the awkwardness, bulk and weight of the nozzle which usually requires an attendant with at least minimum technical training or experience to handle the presently available commercial dispensing nozzles satisfactorily.
It is most desirable to retain as many of the safety features incorporated in more bulky and heavy automatic shutoff dispensing nozzles in a lightweight, readily manipulatable nozzle without sacrificing any of the optimum features that have been found acceptable in the presently available units. Furthermore, it has been found desirable to provide a gasoline dispensing nozzle with a single finger actuating trigger in combination with an automatic shutoff mechanism that is extremely compact, durable and readily manipulatable by women and children who have minimum or no experience in utilizing automatic gasoline dispensing nozzles.
It has been further found to be desirable to provide an automatic safety shutoff nozzle in which there is provided a valve mechanism which will be precluded from being operated once deactivated or released automatically without rearming or resetting the valve mechanism whether the shutoff has occurred after reaching a predetermined fluid level or the nozzle has been tilted or become displaced inadvertently to cause the valve mechanism to become deactuated.
It has been further deemed advantageous to provide an automatic shutoff nozzle with a trigger-actuated lever and pistol grip to facilitate actuation of the flow valve mechanism with means for controlling fluid flow by incrementally displacing the trigger lever and retaining it in a suitable position to control fluid flow from minimum to maximum rates.
Another feature of the improved automatic shutoff dispensing nozzle of this invention is to provide an axially displaceable valve mechanism for use in combination with a transversely operable valve mechanism disengaging mechanism that is sensitive to air pressure fluctuations detected from a fluid sensing device in the nozzle to deactivate the valve mechanism.
A safety shutoff to terminate fluid flow is incorporated in the nozzle whereby unusual tilting or orientation of the nozzle housing or inadvertent removal of the nozzle from a fill pipe which may occur when the driver ofa vehicle leaves the location and the nozzle may fall to the ground while still dispensing gasoline will cause the valve mechanism to become deactivated terminating fluid flow.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS Many of the advantages of this novel automatic shutoff dispensing nozzle will become more readily apparent from the accompanying detailed description of a preferred embodiment, which will be described without limitations intended, in which like characters of reference designate corresponding parts throughout the several views, and wherein:
FIG. I is a side perspective view of a preferred embodiment of a pistol-grip trigger-actuated, automatic shutoff nozzle embodying this invention;
FIG. 2 is an enlarged partial longitudinal sectional view, in side elevation, of a substantial portion of the nozzle of FIG. I illustrating the valve mechanism in closed full line and dispensing broken line positions;
FIG. 3 is an enlarged partial longitudinal sectional view, in top plan, of a substantial portion of the nozzle of FIGS. 1 and 2 illustrating the valve mechanism in the closed position only;
FIG. 4 is an exploded perspective view of the valve mechanism components of the nozzle and of the automatic shutoff mechanism as shown in assembled condition in FIGS. 2 and 3;
FIGS. 5 and 6 are schematic views of the valve mechanism and automatic shutoff in the dispensing and shutoff positions, respectively;
FIG. 7 is a perspective view of the safety-trip diaphragm and spindle-piston release mechanism; and
FIG. 8 is an exploded perspective view of the dispenser lever fluid flow control latch and spring.
DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF A PREFERRED EMBODIMENT OF THE INVENTION Referring to the drawing and particularly to FIGS. 1, 2 and 3, there is illustrated a preferred embodiment of the lightweight, finger-trigger actuated and pistol grip automatic shutoff nozzle 10 in which the housing 11 has a fluid inlet 12 provided with a hose-receiving bushing 13 securely retained in the housing 11 rearwardly of the depending guard 14 mounted to the housing exterior by the housing-encircling collar 15. A curvilinear or downwardly extending discharge spout I6 is securely fastened to the fluid outlet 17 of the housing 11 by means of the cooperating clamping nuts 18 and 19. A helical spring 20 with spaced apart convolutions encircles the upper portion 21 of spout 16 to resist disengagement of the spout from an intumed lip on a flanged fill pipe opening by interengagement of a convolution of spring 21 with such lip (not shown).
The depending guard 14 has a horizontal portion 22 which terminates in an upwardly extending connecting link 23 and is fastened to the housing 11 by screw 24. An intermediate finger guide and support rib 25 extends upwardly from the horizontal portion 22 and link 23 to engage the receiving lug 26 depending from the body of housing 11. Lug 26 has a rear arcuate finger reset 27 for engaging one of the fingers partially wrapped about the cylindrical housing handle with a third finger rest portion 28 being positioned on the guard finger guide and support rib 25.
A finger trigger or lever 30 for actuating the valve mechanism 47 is pivotally mounted on the transversely extending pivot stud 31 (see FIG. 2) which is positioned in the trigger housing slot 32. Trigger 30 is substantially L-shaped and may be formed of reinforced high density polyethylene or other suitable material. One leg 33 of the L-shaped trigger 30 is provided with a wear resistant valve stem-engaging plug 34 while the other leg 35 thereof projects from the slot 32. A finger-engaging trigger guard 36 is pivotally attached adjacent to the terminal free end 37 of leg 35 on the stud 38 with a trigger extension 39 projecting freely from the guard 36. A trigger extension retaining rod 40, having a reduced guide pin 41 at one end and a slotted head 42 at the other end, is
rotatably supported and exposed from the upwardly extending rib with a leaf spring 43 mounted to hold the rod against rotation out of the trigger guard latching position as shown in FIGS. 2 and 8. Rod 40 is provided on one surface thereof with spaced-apart trigger extension-receiving and positioning detents 44 and 45 each of which will cause a different fluid flow rate upon releasable engagement with the projecting trigger extension 39. Engagement of the trigger extension 39 in one or the other of the detents 44 or 45 will permit fluid flow to continue while the nozzle is unattended until the automatic shutoff (to be described hereafter) occurs. Rotation of stud 40, by means of a screw driver inserted into the slotted head 42, may present an uninterrupted surface and will require manual manipulation of the trigger 30 by an attendant during and throughout the dispensing operation with the rate of fluid flow depending upon the disposition of the trigger.
An axial cavity 46 in housing 11 cooperatively retains the valve mechanism 47 for axial displacement to control fluid flow therethrough. The valve mechanism 47 includes an assembly of components, best shown in FIGS. 2, 3 and 4 through 6, will be described from the inlet 12 of the nozzle 10 to the actuating trigger 30. Spherical ball 48 is guidably supported by the axially slidable ball-retaining cage 49 which is provided with circumferentially spaced-apart guide fins 50 each of which is supported by a radial leg 51 that extends from the ball-receiving rim 52. Rim 52 is provided with an axial opening 53 with the ball 48 being suitably seated in the ball-receiving seat 54 in the positions shown in FIG. 2. A conical spring 55 resiliently urges cage 49 and ball 48 to the left, as shown in FIG. 2, in a ball-seating position. In the valve closed position, as shown in full line form in FIG. 2, ball 48 is also seated against the main valve member 56 having a ball-seating washer 57 and a conical disk seating washer 58 at the opposite end for sealing engagement against a main valve seal 580 on annular member 59 in housing 11. A series of circumferentially spaced-apart ports 60 extend obliquely through valve member 56 to permit fluid flow from one side thereof to the other upon unseating of the ball 48, as shown in outline form in FIG. 2. Valve member 56 has a stepped axial bore 61 cooperatively to receive the reduced plunger end 62 and the adjacent enlarged main portion 63 of inlet spindle 64 for slidable insertion into and out of member 56. A frustoconical check valve member 65 is slidably retained on inlet spindle 64 and is normally resiliently urged by helical spring 66 to the closed seated position against check valve seat 660 located on the annular member 59.
The other end of inlet spindle 64 is connected to a slidable piston 69. The piston 69 is displaceable axially between limits in the internal piston-receiving housing portion 70 of the nozzle housing 11. Piston 69 has a longitudinal opening 72 (see FIG. 4) which extends axially partially through the piston for cooperatively receiving the helical spring 73 and the displaceable trigger-engaging spindle 74 therein. The forward rounded portion 75 of spindle 74 projectsfrom the housing to engage the wear resistant stud 34 on the trigger 30. A longitudinally extending pin-receiving slot 76 in the piston 69 will cooperatively receive the transversely extending pin 77 secured to the spindle 74 to retain the spindle against rotation during longitudinal or axial displacement. A transversely extending roller-receiving slot 78 is provided in piston 69 for cooperation with an elongated roller-receiving slot 79 in the spindle 74. An O-ring 80 is supported in a circumferential recess on piston 69.
The safety automatic shutoff mechanism 81 (see FIG. 3) for the valve mechanism 47 is provided for deactivation of fluid flow whenever a tank is filled or the dispensing nozzle is displaced to an angle which will deactivate the nozzle as will be described more fully hereafter. Housing 11 is provided with a laterally extending boss 82 for cooperatively receiving therein a flexible diaphragm 83 supported on a displaceable U-shaped roller supporting frame 84 that is connected by a washer 85 and rivet 86 (see FIG. 4) to the diaphragm 83. The U-shaped supporting frame 84 is provided with forwardly extending spaced-apart arms 87 and 88 to which cooperating roller-supporting guide plates 89 are secured in spaced relation thereto. Elongated roller-receiving slots 90 are provided in the arms 87 and 88 to receive and support for slidable displacement therein a pair of cylindrical rollers 91, as shown in FIG. 7.
In the assembled condition, as shown in FIGS. 2, 3, 5 and 6, rollers 91 are mounted on the U-shaped frame or bracket 84 to engage, in the nozzle closed position, into the piston and spindle slots 78 and 79 forming a unified connecting link throughout the axial extent of the valve mechanism 47 whereby upon pivoting trigger 30, the projecting spindle portion 75 of spindle 74 will displace trigger engaging spindle 74, piston 69 and inlet spindle 64 to the right which in turn will displace ball 48 and cage 49 initially to admit fluid to flow from the inlet 12 of the nozzle through the ports or passages 60 in the member 56. Fluid under pressure entering passages 60 will enter into the annular chamber 92 and equalize the pressure on both sides of the main valve member 56. Thus, the relatively large main valve member 56 is moved by the enlarged portion 63 on the spindle to the open position with just sufficient force exerted on the trigger 30 to overcome the force of the spring 55. As fluid flows through the nozzle, sufficient pressure will be exerted to displace the conical fluid flow disk 65 to the left in FIG. 2 thereby admitting fluid into the housing chamber 93 as it flows toward the discharge spout 16.
The automatic shutoff assembly 81 retained in boss 82 of housing 11 is responsive to air pressure fluctuations from the fluid-detecting or sensing line 94 that is open and exposed at the terminal end 95 thereof through the opening 96 in the lower portion of nozzle spout 16 to detect the fluid level in a tank or fill pipe. Line 94 extends rearwardly through spout 16 preferably for connection with a safety cutoff nozzle tilting detecting check valve 97 that is positioned in line 94 and leads to the automatic shutoff assembly 81. The automatic tilting detecting check valve 97 has a cylindrical body 98 and a removable cap 99 through which check valve 97 there is a passageway 100 that communicates and will permit the flow of air during fluid flow through line 94. A converging conical ball-receiving chamber 101 is formed in cap 99 for retaining check ball 102 therein. Should the nozzle 10 be tilted to position causing ball 102 to be displaced rearwardly to seat in the conical chamber thereby preventing air from flowing into passage 100, the automatic shutoff assembly 81 will be activated to cause the valve mechanism 47 to shut down fluid flow. Inadvertent withdrawal of the spout 16 from a fill line or inclination of the nozzle above a certain angle will cause the automatic shutoff assembly to be actuated thereby terminating fluid flow through the nozzle.
Passageway 100 communicates with passageway 101a in the housing leading to the diaphragm-retaining chamber 102a formed in boss 82 with the disk 103 as shown in FIG. 3. The diaphragm 83 and its supporting U-shaped bracket 84 are resiliently urged upwardly or vertically by helical spring 104 supported by the disk 103, as shown in FIGS. 3 and 5, to position rollers 91 in the seated position in slots 78 and 79. Diaphragm 83 is shown in the upwardly flexed position which will occur when the nozzle is conditioned for operation and during fluid dispensing. Air will be permitted to flow through line 94, passageways 100, 101a, chamber 102a, and passageway 105 into the annular recess 106 from the connecting passageway 107. A Venturi effect will be produced as fluid flows through the chamber 92 between the check valve member 65 and the annular member 59 causing a flow of air to be induced through the aforesaid line, chamber and passageways. The spring 104 maintains the diaphragm 83 in the upwardly flexed position, as shown in FIG. 3, during fluid flow and prior to trigger actuation. However, when the terminal end 95 of the fluid detecting or sensing line 94 is emersed in liquid or ball 102 constricts or blocks passage 100, adequate suction will be produced in chamber 1020 to overcome the action of spring 104 to deflect the diaphragm 83 downwardly, thereby withdrawing rollers 91 from the notches 78 and 79 on the piston and spindle and breaking the continuous link between the piston 69 and trigger engaging spindle 74 in the valve mechanism 47 to permit the piston 69 to be displaced to the left by the springs 55 and 66, as shown in FIG. 6. Thus, permitting conical spring 55 to urge the cage 49 and ball 48 to the closed seated position against washer 57 on member 56 and the main valve member 56 against the seat 58a, as shown in FIGS. 6 and 8 terminating fluid flow through the valve mechanism and housing.
Before fluid flow may be reinitiated, the valve mechanism 47 must become rearmed or reseated with the rollers 91 being repositioned within their notches 78 and 79 as shown in FIGS. 2, 3 and 5. This is achieved by withdrawal of the nozzle from the fill tank that has been filled or reorienting the position of the nozzle to permit resetting of the automatic shutoff assembly.
It has been found most desirable for compactness that the automatic shutoff assembly operate transversely or substantially at right angles to the valve mechanism as shown in this preferred embodiment in which the valve mechanism is assembled axially in the housing in line with the path of fluid flow through the handle of the nozzle.
In operation, an operator need only to depress the trigger 30 which will displace the valve assembly to the right unseating ball 48. Movement of the ball 48 off the seat 57 permits fluid to flow through the passageways 60 into the chamber 92 pressure balancing the main valve member 56. Additional movement of the trigger 30 and the spindle 64 unseats the balanced main valve member 56 to permit full flow through the nozzle. Adequate fluid pressure will displace the conical disk 65 against the action of spring 66 to permit fluid to flow into chamber 93 toward the discharge spout l6 recognizing that the rollers 91 are retained in the piston and spindle notches 78 and 79, respectively, causing a unified link in the valve mechanism 47. As fluid flows through chamber 92, suction will be generated by virtue of the Venturi effect causing air flow through line 94 and passageways 100, 101a, cavity 102a, passageways 105, recess 106 and cavity 107. Upon fluid detection by the open terminal end 95 of line 94, suction will be created reversely flexing diaphragm 83, withdrawing rollers 91 from their notches 78 and 79 disarming the valve mechanism 47 and permitting the spindle 74 to slide relatively within piston 69 so that the conical spring 55 will displace cage 49 and ball 48 to the seated position and moving the main valve member 56 to the closed position as shown in FIGS. 2 and 6.
l. A lightweight, automatic shutoff, fluid dispensing nozzle comprising:
a housing having a longitudinal valve mechanism-receiving axial cavity at one end thereof, a fluid discharge spout extending from said housing at the other end thereof for insertion into a fill pipe, a main valve seat oriented away from said other end, and a pistol grip hand-receiving portion;
a finger-actuated trigger pivotally connected at one end in said housing;
valve means located in and axially displaceable between open and closed positions in said housing cavity, said valve means being engageable with said trigger for actuation by said trigger to open said valve means to permit fluid flow through said housing;
automatic shutoff means in said housing including a diaphragm displaceable transversely to said valve means and responsive to air pressure fluctuations, said shutoff means also including releasable latch means mounted on said diaphragm in constant engagement with said valve means, and said shutoff means including fluid level sensing means for conducting air flow through said automatic shutoff means on one side of said diaphragm during fluid flow, whereby, upon fluid level detection by said sensing means, air flow will terminate causing a suction on said diaphragm to release said latch means permitting said valve means to move to said closed position; said valve means includes an axially dlsplaceable ball and a main valve member having a seat for said ball and having a fluid passage within said seat, said valve member engaging said main valve seat in the closed position, an inlet spindle engageable sequentially with said ball and main valve member and connected to a piston, said piston being releasably connected by said latch means to a trigger engaging spindle that is engageable with said trigger, said trigger engaging spindle and piston being displaceable axially with said inlet spindle as a unit when said latch means is in engagement with said trigger engaging spindle, said trigger engaging spindle and piston being moveable relative to each other when said latch means is disengaged permitting reseating of said ball and main valve member to terminate fluid flow; and,
a spring located in said shutoff means in engagement with said diaphragm and biasing said attached latch means toward said valve means and toward the position connecting said piston and trigger engaging spindle.
2. The nozzle of claim 1 wherein a first end portion on said inlet spindle has an end surface moveable through said passageway for engaging said ball and an enlarged portion thereon for engaging said main valve member, said enlarged portion being located on said spindle at a distance from said end surface that is greater than the length of said passageway whereby said ball is moved off said ball seat prior to the engagement of said enlarged portion with said main valve member.
3. The nozzle of claim 2 wherein said housing has an annular check valve seat located between said main valve seat and the other end of said housing and said nozzle also includes:
a check valve member slidingly positioned on said inlet spindle and moveable thereon into and out of sealing engagement with said check valve seat; and,
means carried by said inlet spindle resiliently biasing said check valve member toward said check valve seat.
4. The nozzle of claim I and also including:
a ball retaining cage slidingly disposed in the axial cavity of said housing between said ball and said one end, said cage engaging said ball to position said ball in substantial alignment with said ball seat; and,
resilient means disposed between said cage and said one end of the housing for urging said ball toward said ball seat.