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Publication numberUS3642179 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateFeb 15, 1972
Filing dateAug 7, 1970
Priority dateAug 7, 1970
Also published asCA943107A2, CA945523A2, CA946339A1, DE2120915A1, DE7116498U
Publication numberUS 3642179 A, US 3642179A, US-A-3642179, US3642179 A, US3642179A
InventorsLewis A Micallef
Original AssigneeLeeds & Micallef
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Self-restoring dispenser
US 3642179 A
Abstract
A self-restoring dispenser for the valve stem of a pressurized container has an actuator that cooperates with a closure member for the dispensing orifice of the actuator. The closure member is responsive to the movement of the actuator and is displaceable thereby between open and closed positions and, for the sake of safety, also an intermediate temporary position impact abutment.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent Micallef 1 Feb. 15, 1972 [541 SELF-RESTORING DISPENSER 2,982,448 5/1961 Leonard et al ..222/402.13 x 3 I69 672 2/1965 Sofifer etal ..222/402.ll X 72 l t. Le A.M1callfN Y k,N.Y. l 1 ew 3,531,026 9/1970 Venus, Jr ..222/402.11 [73] Assignee: Leeds 81 Micallel, New York, NY.

[ Filed! Allg- 1970 Primary Examiner-Samuel F. Coleman [21] APPL No: 61,977 Assistant Examiner-James M. Slattery Attarney-Emest F. Marmorek Related US. Application Data [63] Continuation of Ser. No. 702,058,- Jan. 31; 1968, [57] ABSTRACT abandoned.

A self-restonng dlspenser for the valve stem of a pressurized 52] us. 01 ..222/402.12, 222/402.13, 222/402.11 container has tumor cooperates with a Closure [51] Int. Cl ..B65d 83/14 member for the dispensing Orifice of the acmamr- The Closure [58] Field of Search ..222/402.1, 402.1 1, 402.12, member is responsive to the movement of the actuator and is ZZZ/40113, 402,14 displaceable thereby between open and closed positions and, for the sake of safety, also an intermediate temporary position [56] References Cited impact abutment.

UNITED STATES PATENTS 14 Claims, 1 1 Drawing Figures 3,323,695 6/1967 Monahon ..222/402.13 X

SELF-RESTORING DISPENSER This is a continuation-in-part of my application Ser. No. 702,058 filed Jan. 31, 1968 now abandoned.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION The invention relates generally to pressurized fluid containers such as aerosol cans and more particularly to improved actuating means for the valve stem thereof.

The term aerosol can, as used herein, refers to those containers having a pressurized fluid that is used to dispense the contents of the container. Generally, the prior art provides a valve stem extending upwardly from the container. An actuator is used to engage and axially depress or otherwise displace the stem in order to open the valve. The actuator includes a passageway fluidly communicating with the valve stem and terminating in a nozzle or suitabledispensing orifice. When the actuator is depressed, the contents of the container flow first through the valve stem, then through the passageway and are discharged from the nozzle.

While the prior art construction described above is reasonably efficient and enjoys widespread usage in various forms, it does exhibit several shortcomings and disadvantages. Perhaps the most readily apparent drawback of the prior art is the fact that the dispensing nozzle of the actuator is left open to the atmosphere. Airborne dust, germs and other contaminants can collect in the nozzle and then be ejected with the contents the next time the container is used with potentially harmful consequences. The residue left in the nozzle may also decompose or solidify and clog the nozzle. To overcome this, some manufacturers provide an additional cap but this adds unnecessarily to the production cost and selling price. Furthermore the cover, which is a separable part, can be lost or be omitted from use, thus defeating at least one of its functions.

Another serious limitation in the prior art constructions is that generally they are not tamperproof against casual or unauthorized usage by the shopper. Where a cap is used to protect the valve stem actuator, the cap must be readily removable to permit easy usage of the aerosol can. However, the easy removability of the cap also permits a shopper to try out the product and thereby to reduce the volume of the contents for the ultimate purchaser.

Still another disadvantage of the prior art is that generally no means are provided for positively indicating the dispensing direction of the nozzle. Frequently, because the user is not careful, or is not aware that the nozzle is not properly pointed, the contents may completely miss the intended target. This is, of course, both messy and wasteful. Further criticism of the prior art construction is that frequently the top of the can did not readily lend itself to price marking while the cans were still in the shipping carton. Thus additional handling was required at increased costs. It has also been found that the shape of the top of many examples of the prior art did not permit safe stacking. Finally, it has also been found that much of the prior art required greater effort to actuate the valve stem than does the present invention.

By way of contrast, the present invention provides a lever or actuator or actuator lever for an aerosol can valve stem as well as a closure member that responds to the movement of the actuator lever. That is, when one portion of the actuator is depressed, the nozzle is raised into an operative position and the closure member that initially covered the nozzle in the nonoperative position is also depressed and thus uncovers the nozzle. The actuator and the closure member cooperate with each other to provide automatic exposure of the nozzle when the aerosol can is in use. Further the actuator and the closure automatically cooperate with each other to protect the nozzles dispensing orifice from contaminants when the aerosol can is not in use. The aforementioned feature and advantage is inexpensively achieved without the use of any additional, separate cap to protect the actuator.

It is a feature of this invention that the actuator lever is floatingly" supported in the cap or base or base member that is snapped on to the aerosol can. One portion of the actuator lever is resiliently supported by the nozzle closure member. Another portion of the actuator lever includes laterally extending tabs that are guided in and retained by inverted, openended slots formed in the base member. In one embodiment of the invention, the actuator lever is displaced angularly about integral pivots that project into another pair of inverted, openended slots in the base member while in another embodiment the angular movement of the actuator lever is about laterally extending lugs that mate with similarly shaped, inverted and open-ended slots in the base member. Each lug has a surface that acts as a fulcrum and, in effect, provides a camlike action. Thus the construction of both embodiments allows the actuator lever to float" in the slots of the base memberv Means are also provided in the present invention to prohibit the casual or unauthorized tampering with the actuator lever. A tab is formed integrally with the actuator lever and cooperates with a portion of the base that is mounted on the can to prevent the actuator lever from being depressed. The tab may easily be lifted up and snapped off by the purchaser prior to the first usage of the aerosol can. The actuator lever can then be depressed in the usual manner, there being sufficient clearance, for the tilting of the actuator lever, between the lever and the base once the tab is removed.

The present invention also overcomes other deficiencies of the prior art mentioned above. The actuator lever is formed with converging sidewalls whereby the lever is narrowest at the end thereof which contains the nozzle. This construction provides for an inherent indication of nozzle and spray direction. The substantially flat top surface of the base is flush with the planar, upper surface of the actuator lever thus permitting price marking of the cans while they are still in the shipping container. Also, the flat, substantially continuous surface of the combined lever and base allows safe stacking of the aerosol cans.

Accordingly, it is among the principal objects of the invention to overcome inexpensively the deficiencies of the prior art constructions.

It is another object of the invention to provide a displaceable cover for the dispensing nozzle of the valve stem actuator lever. i

It is a further object of the invention to provide a structure whereby the aforementioned displacement of the nozzle cover is responsive to the movement of the actuator lever both to and from a rest position.

It is still another object of the invention to provide an actuator lever, as described above, that automatically displaces a resiliently mounted nozzle cover to an open position when the actuator lever is depressed.

It is still a further object of the invention to provide ing support for the actuator lever.

It is still a further object of the invention to provide a fulcrum-type mounting of the actuator lever.

lt is yet another object of the invention to provide means prohibiting unauthorized or accidental movement ofi the actuator lever.

It is yet a further object of the invention to provide means, in combination with the actuator lever, for positively indicating the direction of nozzle spray.

It is another object of the invention to provide an improved actuator lever for an aerosol can wherein price majking is facilitated and a plurality of cans can be safely stacked.

It is yet another object of the invention to provide feature which renders it substantially child tamperproof.

These and other features, objects and advantages of the invention will, in part, be pointed out with particularity and will, in part, become obvious from the following, more detailed description of the invention, taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawing which forms an integral part thereof.

safety BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING In the drawing:

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a self-restoring dispenser illustrating the structural relationship of several of the components in accordance with the present invention;

FIG. 2 is a fragmentary elevational view showing the structure of FIG. 1 as applied to an aerosol can;

FIG. 3 is a large scale underside plan view of the dispenser taken on the line 3-3 of FIG. 2;

FIG. 4 is a fragmentary side elevational view, partly in section, taken on the line 4-4 of FIG. 2 and showing the parts in the normal rest or nonoperative position;

FIG. 5 is an elevational, partly sectional, view similar to FIG. 4, but showing the dispenser in the operative position;

FIG. 6 is a sectional elevational view of the base and actuator-biasing member taken on the line 66 of FIG. 4;

FIG. 7 is a sectional elevational view taken on the line 77 of FIG. 6;

FIG. 8 is a large-scale underside view of the actuator lever in accordance with one embodiment of the invention;

FIG. 9 is a fragmentary, extended elevational view, partly in section, of a modification;

FIG. 10 is a fragmentary large-scale side elevational view, partly in section, similar to FIG. 4 but embodying a modification shown in the rest position; and

FIG. 11 is a fragmentary large-scale side elevational view, partly in section, similar to FIG. 5 but showing the modified dispenser in an intermediate position between the rest position (FIG. 10) and the operating position (FIG. 5).

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT Referring now to the drawing, FIG. 1 illustrates the basic components of the present invention. The device as a whole is designated by the reference character 10 and is comprised of a cap or base or base member 12, a resilient plate 14 (FIG. 3) and an actuator or lever or actuator lever 16. Although for convenience, the plate 14 is described as a separate element that is suitably secured to a portion of the base 12, it should be clearly understood that the base 12 and the plate 14 can be molded together as a single unit in accordance with a preferred embodiment of the present invention.

The base 12 is formed with a shirt or skirt portion 20, the outside bottom end of which is so dimensioned as to be snugly received on the inside of a channel C that is formed near the top of a conventional aerosol can A. The top surface 22 of the base 12 is substantially flat and includes a diametrically positioned channel 24 that is defined by opposite straight walls or wall portions 26 that are spaced apart from each other and are positioned convergingly relative to each other. Both ends of the channel 24 terminate at the skirt portion of the base. For purposes to be described hereinafter, the wall portions 26 include pairs of opposed, open bottomed recesses, one pair of recesses 30 being formed near the wider end of the channel 24, the other pair of recesses 32 being formed near the narrower end of the channel 24. Further the walls 26 each include a pair of opposed tabs 34 that project inwardly therefrom near the narrow end of the channel 24. The function of the tabs 34 will be described later.

As mentioned above, the bottom end of the skirt 20 is so dimensioned as to be received in a channel formed in the aerosol can. It is desirable, however, to include additional means to prevent accidental removal of the base and yet permit simple'and preferably automatic assembly thereof to the aerosol can.

As best shown in FIGS. 3, 6 and 7, a ring member 36 is formed integrally with the base member 12 and extends downwardly from the underside thereof. The ring member 36 is almost completely circular, being open only at the narrow end of the channel 24 to permit free movement of the narrow end of the plate 14. In this connection is should be noted that the portions or sections 38 of the walls 26 that are within the diameter of the ring 36, are shorter than the remaining sections of the walls 26 which extend downwardly to the plane of the bottom end of the ring 36. The wall sections 38 are dimensioned such that in the assembled condition they rest across the top of the aerosol can mounting cup.

The lower end of the ring member 36 is formed with an inwardly directed lip 40 that is dimensioned to engage the annular mounting cup located around the valve stem with a slight interference or snap fit. When the base 12 is forced downwardly and the skirt 20 is seated in the channel of the can, the lip 40 of the ring member 36 positions itself below the mounting cup flange in order to resist an upward pull on the base member 12.

The second major component of the assembly forming this invention is the resilient plate 14. In accordance with a preferred embodiment, the resilient plate 14 is molded integrally with the base 12 of plastic material, provided that the plastic material has the required characteristics of flexibility and resiliency. As shown particularly in FIG. 3, the plate 14 is wedge-shaped and is comprised of a base leg 46 that may be integrally joined at areas 48 to the sidewalls 26, a pair of spaced, converging side portions 50 that extend from the base leg 46, and a body portion 52 that extends from the side portions 50. An edge 52a of the body portion 52, the side portions 50 and the base leg 46 define an opening 54.

A notch 56 is formed in each of the side edges of the body portion 52 such that they cooperate with the inwardly projecting tabs 34 of the walls 26 and function in a manner to be described later. As may be seen, particularly in FIGS. 4 and 5, the plate 14 is molded with, or otherwise formed and assembled to, the base 12 with a suitable clearance between the converging sides of the plate 14 and the walls 26 which converge at substantially the same angle. Clearance is also provided between the respective notches 56 and the tabs 34. As an im portant aspect of this invention, the plate 14 includes a nozzle cover 58 that extends upwardly from the front end of the body portion.

The plate 14 is also formed with flex points 60 at the juncture of the side portions 50 and the base leg 46. Finally, it will be seen in FIGS. 4 and 5, that the side portions 50 are formed at an obtuse angle to the base leg 46 and the body portion 52 is formed at an oppositely directed obtuse angle to the side portions 50. When assembled, the base leg 46 is molded with or secured to the walls 26 in such a manner that the opening 54 in the plate 14 is disposed about the aerosol can valve stem. In the normal rest or nonoperative position, with the nozzle covered (FIG. 4), the body portion 52 is in a substantially horizontal position with the top surface thereof in planar abutment with the underside of the actuator lever 16.

The actuator lever 16 that cooperates with both the base 12 and the plate 14 is also substantially triangular in shape (FIG. 8). The sides 62 thereof converge inwardly at substantially the same angle as the walls 26 of the base 12 and the side portions 50 of the plate 14 to terminate at the forward or nozzle end 64. The rear or wider end 66 of the substantially flat top surface is utilized to apply finger pressure to the actuator. Tabs 58 project outwardly from the two actuator sides 62 near the end 66 and cooperate with the recesses 30 in the walls 26 of the base 12. Similarly, cylindrical members 70 project outwardly from the two actuator sides 62, intermediate the ends thereof and cooperate with the recesses 32 in the walls 26.

Referring to FIGS. 4 and 5, it will be noted that the underside of the actuator 16 includes a downwardly depending boss 72 that has a bore 74. The bore 74 communicates directly with a passageway 76 that is formed in the body of the actuator 16 and which terminates in a conventional dispensing orifice or nozzle 78 that preferably has a customary grooved spray insert, for ejecting the contents of the can in spray form. The nozzle 78 thus in accordance with a preferred embodiment is a spray nozzle. The bore 74 is suitably dimensioned to seat directly on the top of the valve stem V when the actuator 16 is depressed, so that in the operating position (FIG. 5), the contents of the container may be discharged through the valve stem V, the bore 74, the passageway 76 and the nozzle 78.

The tamperproof feature of this invention is shown in solid lines in FIGS. 1 and 2 and in broken lines in FIG. 4. The actuator I6 is formed with a downwardly extending face 80 at the widest end thereof, the face 80 being so located that its outer surface is within the envelope defined by the inner surface of the skirt 20. An extension 82 is formed integrally with and outwardly offset from the face 80 so that it is positioned on the outside of the skirt 20. It will be appreciated that the offset portion 84 between the extension 82 and the face 80 is positioned over the edge 86 of the skirt and thus will prevent the downward movement of the end 66 of the actuator 16. Thus the aerosol can cannot accidentally be used. The first authorized user must lift up and break off the tab 82 including the offset portion 84 before the actuator can be depressed. This construction will prevent the casual user from sampling and thus depleting the contents.

At this point it should be noted that when fully assembled and prior to first usage, the actuator 16 fits into the channel 24 (FIGS. 1 and 2) with only sufficient clearance therebetween to permit free movement of the actuator 16. The top surfaces 22 and 88 of the base member 12 and the actuator 16, respectively, are substantially flat and flush with each other, thus providing a good marking surface while the containers are in the shipping carton and also providing a safe surface for stacking the containers one upon the other. The foregoing description also makes evident the fact that directional indications means, in the form of the wedge-shape of the actuator lever 16, is provided without additional cost.

The embodiment illustrated and described hereinbefore utilizes rodlike, cylindrical members 70 that extend laterally from the actuator lever 16 and cooperate with said similarly shaped, elongated recesses 32 in the sidewalls 26 of the base member 12. This construction provides for angular displacement of the actuator 16 about the axis of the cylindrical members 70. The present invention, however, is not limited to this precise construction and may, in fact, take the form shown in FIG. 9. With the exception of the fulcrum arrangement to be described hereinafter, the remainder of the components are the same as in the first embodiment and will not be described again.

In FIG. 9 it will be seen that somewhat flat, lateral extension or lugs 90 are provided that are elongated in the direction of the length of the actuator 16. The recesses 92 are similarly shaped with the corners rounded in the same manner as those of the extensions. The present invention also contemplates using either an arched top surface on the extensions 90 acting against a straight edge in the recess 92 or an arched edge in the recess 92 being contacted by extensions 90 having a flat top surface. Alternatively, both the top surface of the extensions 90 and the mating edges of the recess 92 can both be arched. Regardless of which combination is selected the extensions perform as a fulcrum for the actuator lever 16. The lever then moves angularly about the fulcrum with the extensions 90 providing, with the recesses 92, a cam action.

MODE OF OPERATION To assemble the components, the inherent resiliency of the plastic material is utilized to permit the actuator 16 to be introduced into the channel 24 formed on the top of the base 12. It should be noted that when assembled the tabs 68 at the wider end of the actuator 16 are positioned in the recesses 30 at the wider end of the channel 24 and the lateral extensions or fulcrums 70 or 90, respectively, about which the actuator 16 moves, are in their mating recesses 32 or 92, respectively. Also, the inwardly extending projections 34 at the narrow end of the channel are positioned in the notches 56 at the side edges of the resilient plate 14. The tabs 68 at the wide end of the actuator 16 and the extensions 70, 90 near the narrow end thereof provide with the respective recesses 30, 32, 92 an antirocking feature for the actuator 16 and limit the upward movement thereof. The base 12 may now be applied to the aerosol can by having the lip 40 of the ring 38 grippingly engage the mounting cup for the valve stem.

To use the device, the extension 82 and the offset portion 84 at the outer, bottom end of the actuator 16 is first snapped off. The actuator 16 may then be depressed at the wider end 66, with the narrow end 68 pointed at the target. Referring now to FIGS. 4 and 5 it will be seen that as the right hand or wider end of the actuator 16 moves downward and in a clockwise direction about the pivot or fulcrum, the boss 72 on the underside of the actuator 16 seats itself on the aerosol valve stem V. Further movement in this direction will axially depress or otherwise displace the valve stem V. The dispensing nozzle 78 of the actuator is thereby placed in communication with the interior of the container.

As soon as the actuator 16 is moved in a clockwise direction by the users finger pressure, the resilient plate 14 will move in a counterclockwise direction from the nonoperative position shown in FIG. 4 where the nozzle cover 58 is in front of the dispensing nozzle 78 and the body portion 52 of the plate 14 is in surface-to-surface contact with the underside of the actuator. The area of the actuator marked 94 in FIGS. 4, 5 and 8, engages the edge 52a of the opening 54in the plate 14.

As the actuator lever is moving clockwise (from FIG. 4 to FIG. 5), and the base leg 46 of the plate 14 is united with the walls 26, the plate 14 will flex along the lines 60 and particularly the nozzle cover 58 thereof will move in a counterclockwise direction to uncover the dispensing nozzle 78 of the actuator 16. The opposite angular movements of the actuator lever 16 and the plate 14 occur substantially simultaneously and, in the embodiments illustrated, the movement of the valve stem V occurs only slightly thereafter. However it should be clearly understood that the scope of this invention also includes the seating of the boss 72 directly on the valve stem, even in the nonoperative or rest position. It will be evident that, due to the resiliency of the plate 14, a release of the finger pressure on the wide end 66 of the actuator lever 16 will allow the plate 14 to return from the operative position of FIG. 5 to the nonoperative or rest position of FIG. 4.

From the foregoing it will be seen that a very simple, inexpensive yet effective device has been provided for actuating the valve stem V of an aerosol can. Finger pressure in only one direction causes oppositely angular movement of the dispensing nozzle 78 and the nozzle actuator 16. Release of the finger pressure automatically permits return of the components to their original, nonoperative rest position because of the resiliency of the internal plate 14.

In one embodiment of the invention (FIG. 4), the actuator lever 16 moves angularly about a pivot axis, while in the other embodiment illustrated (FIG. 9), a fulcrum arrangement provides a camlike angular motion for the actuator lever 16. In both embodiments the actuator 16 is floatingly supported by the resilient plate 14 because the fore-and-aft lateral extensions 68, 70, of the actuator lever 16 are contained in elongated, open-ended slots 30, 32, 92. The closed upper ends of the slots 30, 32, 92 coupled with the spring pressure exerted by the plate 14 onto the actuator 16, prevent the actuator lever 16 from being unintentionally disassembled and also provide means for restraining the actuator lever 16 from rocking relative to the base 12. The inwardly directed tabs 34 on the converging walls 26 of the base 12 mate with suitably located notches 56 on the resilient plate 14 to provide a similar antirocking feature for the plate 14.

In the modification of FIGS. 10 and 11, there is shown a dispenser generally indicated at 10I0 that generally operates like that of the preceding embodiments. It has a base member III-12, a resilient plate 1014, and an actuator lever l016. Generally, wherever no reference numerals have been provided in FIGS. 10 and 11, the reference numerals of FIGS. 4 and 5 apply.

FIGS. 10 and 11 include a safety feature designed to render the dispenser substantially tamperproof, to aid in protecting the unwary, such as a child.

For this purpose, the actuator lever 1010 is provided with a rearwardly extending nose 101 that has a lower abutment surface 102. The base 10-l0 has an upper abutment surface 103. As best shown in FIG. 11, the two surfaces 102 and 103 will be engaged in an impact abutment in an intermediate position (FIG. 11) between the rest position (FIGS. 4, l) and the operating position (FIG.

Thus, when a person, for instance a child, first depresses the actuator lever l0l6, in the angular tilting movement designed to bring it into the operating position (FIG. 5), the lever -16 will be arrested in the intermediate position (FIG. 1 1) after it has been tilted for only the initial part of the entire actuating movement. This initial part, as best shown in FIG. 11, is insufficient to release material from the container A.

At this intermediate position, even continued downward pressure will not move the actuator lever 1016, as the interabutment between the surfaces 102 and 103 will frustrate such an attempt. It is assumed that a child, after some tries, will give up at this point.

The adult who wishes to use the dispenser will thereupon push the actuator lever 10-l6 forwardly in the direction F until the nose 101 will clear the abutment surface 103. Thereafter, the operator may continue the downward pressure to complete the angular tilting movement of the operating position (FIG. 5),

In order to allow for the forward movement F the recesses 10-32 have been widened as compared to the recesses 32 of the preceding embodiments, to clear the forward path of the cylindrical members l0-70.

Similarly, the recesses 10-30 have been widened to clear the forward path ofthe tabs 10-68.

The forward edge of the recesses l0-30, furthermore, has a cam surface 104, the purpose of which is to return the tab l0-68 to the rest position (FIG. 10) when the actuator lever 10-16 is restored by the resilient plate l014.

With the exception of the interruption at the intermediate position and the required forward movement at that intermediate position, the operation of the modification of FIGS. 10 and 11 is substantially that of the preceding views. During the return movement, the actuator lever 10-16 will be guided shortly before its return to the restposition by the cam 104 and the forward edge of the tab 1068 acting as a cam follower, under the pressure plate 10-14.

The present invention also provides a substantially flat top that facilitates price marking while the containers are in their shipping carton. The substantially flat top surface also aids in the safe stacking of the containers. Directional indicating means are provided by the shape of the actuator 16 and means are also included for decreasing the likelihood of casual or intended unauthorized tampering by a shopper.

There has been disclosed heretofore the best embodiments of the invention presently contemplated. I wish it to be understood, however, that I do not desire to be limited to the exact details of construction shown and described, for obvious modifications will occur to a person skilled in the art.

Having thus described the invention, what I claim as new and desire to be secured by Letters Patent, is as follows:

1. A self-restoring dispenser, for use in connection with a pressurized container of fluid material having a discharge valve at the top of the container with a valve stem extending above the top plane of the container, said dispenser comprisa base adapted to fit onto the top of said container;

an actuator lever supported on said base for angular fulcrummed movement and movable from a normal rest position to an operating position at an angle thereto, upon application of an external pressure force at one end of said lever to perform a dispensing operation;

a nozzle operable to deliver fluid material released in said container through said valve and stem;

means controlled by said actuator adapted to couple said nozzle to said valve stem; and

elongated substantially flat spring means having one fixed end secured to said base and one free end bearing from below against said actuator lever and serving to bias said actuator lever toward said rest position, and operative to restore said actuator lever to said rest position after cessation of external pressure.

2. A dispenser, as claimed in claim I, in which:

said actuator lever defines a transfer passage having an inlet port to engage the valve stem to receive the material delivered from said container, and said transfer passage has an outlet port to constitute said nozzle to deliver the material released from said valve.

3. A dispenser, as claimed in claim 1, in which said spring means is prestressed sufiiciently to hold said actuator in normal rest position while no external force is impressed on said actuator.

4. A dispenser, as claimed in claim 3, in which:

said spring means is additionally stressed by the actuator when the actuator is releasably depressed from the rest position, and said bias means acts to restore the actuator to rest position when the actuator is released.

5. A dispenser, as in claim 1, in which:

said actuator has an under surface extending on both sides of and beyond said fulcrum, and said spring means embodies means for applying balancing pressure to said under surface of said actuator on at least one side of said fulcrum to pressurebalance said actuator in the rest position.

6. A self-restoring dispenser, for use in connection with a pressurized container of fluid material having a discharge valve at the top of the container with a valve stem extending above the top plane of the container, said dispenser comprising:

a base adapted to fit onto the top of said container;

an actuator lever supported on said base for angular fulcrummed movement and movable from a normal rest position to an operating position at an angle thereto, upon application of an external pressure force at one end of said lever to perform a dispensing operation;

a nozzle operable to delivery fluid material released from said container through said valve and stem;

means controlled by said actuator adapted to couple said nozzle to said valve stem; and

resilient bias means serving to bias said actuator lever towards said rest position, and operative to restore said actuator lever to said rest position after cessation of said external pressure;

said resilient bias means is supported as a cantilever, a

lateral flange mounted on the free end of said resilient bias means covering the nozzle when the actuator is in the rest position; and

means operable by the actuator for moving said lateral flange from covering said nozzle when the actuator is operated to open the valve to dispense material.

7. A dispenser, as claimed in claim 6, in which:

said actuator lever is disposed to be depressed at one end to release material from the container, and said nozzle is elevated by the other end of said actuator lever to dispense said released material while said flange uncovers the nozzle.

8. A dispenser, as claimed in claim 6, in which:

said actuator moves said bias means to move said flange element to uncover said nozzle when said actuator means is operated to actuate the valve stem to release material to said nozzle.

9. A valve actuator, as claimed in claim 1, in which:

said spring means is formed as an integral element of said base during manufacture of said base.

10. A dispenser, as claimed in claim 1, including a tab integral with said actuator lever cooperating with a portion of said base to restrain movement of said actuator lever, said tab being readily removable to permit said lever to move angularly thereafter.

11. A dispenser, as claimed in claim 1, including limiting means between said base and said actuator lever permitting movement of said actuator lever between the normal rest position and operating position, but restraining movement of the actuator lever in the opposite direction beyond the rest position.

12. A dispenser, as claimed in claim 1, including means on said base and said spring means operable to guide said spring means.

13. A self-restoring dispenser, for use in connection with a pressurized container of fluid material having a discharge valve at the top of the container with a valve stem extending above the top plane of the container, said dispenser comprismg;

a base adapted to fit onto the top of said container;

an actuator lever supported on said base for angular fulcrummed movement, and movable from a normal rest position in an angular direction through a tilting movement to an operating position at an angle thereto, upon application of an external pressure force at one end of said lever to perform a dispensing operation;

a nozzle operable to deliver fluid material released in said container through said valve and stem;

means controlled by said actuator adapted to couple said nozzle to said valve stem;

resilient bias means serving to bias said actuator lever toward said rest position, and operative to restore said actuator lever to said rest position after cessation of said external pressure;

and safety means operable for releasably restraining said actuator lever to complete more than an initial part of said angular tilting movement from said rest position, said initial part being insufficient to release material from said container, comprising abutment means including a portion of said actuator lever and a portion of said base operable for releasable interengagement thereby arresting said angular tilting movement at an intermediate position when said actuator lever has completed said initial part of said angular tilting movement,

said actuator lever being'movable in said intermediate position in one direction different from said angular direction until said portions have been disengaged and thereby said actuator lever been released for continuing said angular tilting movement to said operating position.

14. A dispenser, as claimed in claim 13, and cam means operable for guiding said actuator lever to said rest position when it is restored by said resilient bias means.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2982448 *Nov 30, 1959May 2, 1961Donofrio Alfonso MClosures for dispensing containers
US3169672 *Jan 23, 1963Feb 16, 1965Clayton Corp Of DelawareLocking actuator cap for valved dispenser
US3323695 *Sep 22, 1965Jun 6, 1967Oel IncConcealed spout assembly
US3531026 *Mar 14, 1969Sep 29, 1970Risdon Mfg CoActuator-overcap for aerosol dispensers
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3878976 *Aug 8, 1973Apr 22, 1975Coster Tecnologie Speciali SpaDispensing pushbutton cap, particularly for aerosol containers
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Classifications
U.S. Classification222/402.12, 222/402.13, 222/402.11
International ClassificationB65D83/16, B65D83/14
Cooperative ClassificationB65D83/205, B65D83/226, B65D83/228
European ClassificationB65D83/22D4, B65D83/22D2, B65D83/20C