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Publication numberUS3661300 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateMay 9, 1972
Filing dateOct 2, 1969
Priority dateOct 2, 1969
Also published asCA927334A1
Publication numberUS 3661300 A, US 3661300A, US-A-3661300, US3661300 A, US3661300A
InventorsNigro Louis V
Original AssigneeGillette Co
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Dispensing package
US 3661300 A
Abstract
An actuating assembly for actuating a tubular valve stem in a pressurized dispensing package which comprises, in its pre-assembled state, a base engageable with the package container, a depressible actuating member which has a discharge portion for connection to the tubular valve stem and includes a discharge passage communicating with the valve stem exit port, frangible means extending between the actuating member and the base for supporting the member on the base so that the discharge portion of the actuating member is aligned for assembly with the valve stem, and cooperating structure, engageable with the container or base, including a destructing member operating on the frangible means to separate the actuating member entirely from the base after the discharge portion of the actuating member has been attached to the tubular valve stem.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

[451 May9,1972

[54] DISPENSING PACKAGE [72] Inventor: Louis V. Nigro, Saugus, Mass.

[73] Assignee: The Gillette Company, Gillett Park,

Boston, Mass.

[22] Filed: Oct. 2, 1969 [21] Appl.No.: 863,094

Huling ..222/182 Osrow ..222/541 X Primary Examiner-Robert B. Reeves Assistant Examiner-Frederick R. Handren Att0rney-Willis M. Ertman [57] ABSTRACT An actuating assembly for actuating a tubular valve stem in a pressurized dispensing package which comprises, in its pre-assembled state, a base engageable with the package container, a depressible actuating member which has a discharge portion for connection to the tubular valve stem and includes a discharge passage communicating with the valve stem exit port, frangible means extending between the actuating member and the base for supporting the member on the base so that the discharge portion of the actuating member is aligned for assembly with the valve stem, and cooperating structure, engageable with the container or base, including a destructing member operating on the frangible means to separate the actuating member entirely from the base after the discharge portion of the actuating member has been attached to the tubular valve stem.

12 Claims, 9 Drawing Figures ,SOO

PATENTEDMAY 9 I972 SHEET 2 BF 2 DISPENSING PACKAGE This invention relates to dispensing materials from pres surized dispensing packages in which a tubular valve stem is operated to dispense material from the package by depressing the tubular valve stem, either axially or transversely.

Although such valve stems may be operated by the direct application of finger pressure, attempts have been made to provide auxiliary actuators which lessen the possibility of ac cidental discharge or of misdirection of discharged materials. Such auxiliary actuators typically are hinged to the dispensing package and pivoted on the hinge by depressing a finger piece, which in turn depresses the valve stem to its operating position. Such hinges, however, greatly constrain freedom of movement of the actuator with the valve stem and hence, unless designed to stretch or similarly deform, may hinder operation of the valve stem (e.g., by cutting down the maximum discharge rate). Moreover, the stress on such hinges (typically, a thin flexible plastic strip), unless the hinge is particularly well-constructed, may render such hinges vulnerable to breaking, under repeated use, and prior to total discharge of the contents of the container.

it is an object of the present invention to provide an improved auxiliary actuator for operating such a tubular valve stem as previously described, which is of sufficiently reliable and durable construction to completely dispense the contents of the dispensing package during its lifetime.

Another object is to provide an actuator having freedom of movement with the valve stem for accurate dispensing of materials over a wide range of discharge rates, and for unimpeded closing of the valve stem after discharge of the desired amount of material.

Another object is to provide such actuators in a readily assembled form having no greater number of pieces for assembly than prior actuators, to permit assembly with conventional speed and machinery.

The invention features an actuating assembly for use in a pressurized dispensing package of the type having a container and a conventional tubular valve stem for controlling material discharge from the container. Such tubular valve stems are constructed with an exit port through which material is discharged from the container, and are operated by pushing down axially on the valve stem or by pushing the valve transversely to its axis. According to the invention, the actuating assembly comprises an actuating member which has a discharge portion for securing the actuator member to the tubular valve stem, including a surface for manually operating the member, and a pivot portion about which the remainder of the actuating member can pivot. The discharge portion contains a discharge passage for transferring material from the valve stem exit port in a desired discharge path to atmosphere. in combination with this actuating member, there is provided cooperating structure secured to the container and including means defining a fulcrum totally disconnected from the actuating member but located to engage the pivot portion of that member to define therewith a pivot axis about which the actuating member is pivotable such that, upon depressing the manual operating surface, the discharge portion of the actuating member is also depressed, which actuates the attached tubular valve stem.

According to a preferred embodiment of the invention, the fulcrum defining means and the pivot portion comprise a cooperating bar and notch assembly, which are located to engage when the manual operating surface of the actuating member is depressed. Since the pivot axis is preferably located at one extreme of the actuating member, whereas the manual operating surface is at its other extreme, with the discharge portion intermediate of these two extremes, pivoting the actuating member about this pivot axis causes the actuating member to tend to move toward the pivot axis. However, since the tubular valve stem must be moved only downwardly toward the container or transversely through an are different from that traversed by the actuating member. This differential movement between the actuating member and the tubular valve stem, however, is readily alleviated in the present invention by, e.g., providing some slack between the fulcrum bar and notch, or by allowing either or both of the bar and notch to deform slightly. Thus, the stress problems arising in prior one-piece hinges as a necessary consequence of accommodating such differential movement have been eliminated by the present invention.

in a preferred embodiment, where the pivot bars are integral parts of the actuating member, the notches are formed in wall portions, forming part of the cooperating structure, and extending parallel to the axis of the tubular valve stem with the notches formed at the lower edge thereof. Such a cooperating structure may also include, in one integrally molded piece, an outer surface defining a cover for the actuating member, having two peripherally spaced apertures for exposing, respectively, the manual operating surface of the actuating member and its discharge passage; the interior wall portions are then constructed to extend between these apertures, defining thereby a chamber open at both ends in which the actuating member freely pivots.

in another aspect, the invention features two assembly pieces, both engageable with the container, and adapted, upon such engagement, to form three operating pieces. In particular, the invention features an actuating assembly, for attachment to a pressurized dispensing package including a container and a conventional tubular valve stem as described, for manually depressing the tubular valve stem to discharge material therethrough, which comprises a base engageable with the container, a depressiblc actuating member which has a discharge portion for connection to the tubular valve stem and includes a discharge passage communicating with the valve stem exit port, frangible means extending between the actuating member and the base for supporting the member on the base so that the discharge portion of the actuating member is aligned for assembly with the valve stem, and cooperating structure, engageable with the container or base, including a destructing member operating on the frangible means to separate the actuating member from the base after the discharge portion of the actuating member has been attached to the tubular valve stem.

A preferable frangible means is simply one or a number (preferably, two) of thin, supporting strips which extend between the actuating member and the base, and constitute the sole means of connection between that member and the base. The destructing member then takes the form of a knife edge located to sever this scverable strip of webbing as soon as the cooperating structure is attached to the container. In the preferred embodiment, the base is constructed for first assembly to the container, and includes a retaining surface which cooperates with retaining means on the cooperating structure for both aligning the cooperating structure and base so that the knife edge will sever the webbing, and also for securing the cooperating structure to the base and thereby also to the container.

Where the actuating member is of the type previously described having a pivot portion engageable with fulcrumdefining means on the cooperating structure to define a pivot axis, the interior wall portions including the knife edges may also include the fulcrum defining means (e.g., a notch located at the lower edge of this wall portion and spaced from the knife edge). Thus attaching the cooperating structure to the base both severs the severable strips connecting the actuating member to the base, and also positions the fulcrum-defining means for engagement with the pivot portion of the actuator. Thus, the entire actuating assembly is provided as two pre-assembled (e.g., molded plastic) pieces, which engage, upon assembly, to form a three-piece actuating assembly.

Other objects, features, and advantages will occur to one skilled in the art from the following description of a preferred embodiment of the invention, taken together with the attached drawings thereof, in which:

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a preferred embodiment of the present invention, shown attached to a portion of a dispensing package containing a tubular valve stem;

FIG. 2 is an exploded view of the embodiment of FIG. 1, prior to assembly;

FIG. 3 is a perspective view, partially in section, of the overcover, actuating member, and base only, prior to assembly;

FIG. 4 is a partially sectional view of the embodiment of FIG. 1, after assembly, showing the overcover, actuating member, and base in section. and the portion of the dispensing package having a tubular valve stem principally in elevation (with just a portion in section), with the valve stem and actuating member in the closed (non-dispensing) position;

FIG. 5 is the same view as FIG. 4, with the actuating member and valve stem shown in the open (dispensing) position;

FIG. 6 is a bottom plan view of the assembled embodiment showing the overcover, actuating member, and base only, but no portion of the dispensing package;

FIG. 7 is a partial sectional view along line 7-7 of FIG. 6,

showing the relative positions of the overcover, actuating member, and base just prior to assembly;

FIG. 8 is a perspective view of the actuating member together with webbing connecting the actuating member to the base in the disassembled state; and,

FIG. 9 is a view, at approximately 90 to that of FIG. 7, showing the relative positions of the overcover and actuating member (shown in section) just prior to assembly.

In the figures there is shown an actuating assembly 10, including a base 12, an actuating member 14, and cooperating overcover structure 16, prior to and after assembly with the top portion 17 of a dispensing package, having an outer container wall 18, and an axially protruding, outwardly biased (e.g., by spring means not shown) tubular valve stem 20, having an axial exit port 21, through which material is dispensed when the valve stem is depressed axially or transversely into the container. Base 12 (which will be described in the disassembled state) has an outer cylindrical wall 26 interrupted along two opposed peripheral portions to form two idenu'cal wall portions 28, 29 having inner surfaces coextensive with the inner cylindrical surface of wall 26, but of reduced thickness to define two indentations 30, 31 along the outer surfaces thereof. The bottom retaining surfaces 32, 33 of wall portions 28, 29 are offset from the bottom surface 34 of wall 26 to define arcuate slots 35, 36. An inner cylindrical wall 37, concentric with wall 26, has an inwardly extending annular retaining flange 38, sized to secure shroud 12 to annular boss 39 on container portion 17 (FIG. 4). Shelf 40 has forward and rearward apertures 41, 42, separated by thin severable web strips 43, 44. Referring particularly to FIG. 6, forward aperture 41 is defined by diverging walls 45 to base wall 37, arcuate wall portions 46, interior diverging walls 47, and forward wall 48. Walls 47, 48 and the projected arcuate extension of arcuate wall portions 46 define a shelf portion 49 thicker than the remainder of shelf 40. Rearward aperture 42 is defined by diverging walls 50 to base wall 37, more closely spaced diverging walls 51 to base wall 33, and arcuate forward wall 52. Bosses 53 are located on the lower surface of shelf 40 for securing annular boss 39 of container portion 17 firmly against retaining flange 38.

Actuating member 14 includes a pivot portion 56, sized to move freely in forward aperture 41 of base 12, having two extending pivot bars 58. Tubular portion 60 has a transverse discharge passage 62 (FIGS. 4, 5) communicating with an interior discharge chamber 63, including an annular shoulder 64 and a cylindrical wall 65 sized to press-fit with the outer upper peripheral wall of tubular valve stem 20. Countersink 66 is provided to facilitate insertion of stem 20 into chamber 65. A rear shelf 68 provides a manual operating surface 70, to which force is applied to pivot actuating member 14 on pivot bars 58.

Cooperating structure 16 has an oval shaped outer wall 72, interrupted at opposite peripheral positions to form two generally rectangular openings 74, 76, interconnected through the interior of cover 16 by interior walls 77, 78, which generally follow the outline of actuating member 14 and have knife edges 80, 81, protruding centrally thereof, and depending notch-defining flange pairs 82, 83, 84, 85, forming fulcrum notches 87, 88, 89, 90, respectively. One notch on each interior wall is located to receive a pivot bar 58 for limiting upward movement thereof, the specific notch so operating depending on the orientation of cover 16, one of the two notches on each well being non-opcratlng, but defining a symmetrical overcover 16 for easy assembly.

The interior surface 91 of oval outer wall 72 is interrupted by two arcuate, reduced inner diameter alignment portions 93, 94. approximately equal to corresponding wall portions 28, 29, respectively, of base 12, both in diameter and in arcuate extent( whereas the inner diameter of the remainder of surface 91 is approximately equal to the outer diameter of peripheral base wall 26). Two arcuate retaining ribs 95, 96, of arcuate extent just slightly less than that of retaining walls 28, 29, (FIG. 6) and of thickness dependent on the flexibility of cover 14, are designed to engage the retaining surfaces 32, 33 of walls 28, 29. Ribs 95, 96 are located so that the bottom of alignment portions 93, 94 will, upon assembly, become coextensive with the bottom 34 of wall 26. Cooperating structure 16 terminates in a reduced outer diameter peripheral wall 98 sized to be tightly received within the annular crimped portion 99 of container portion 17.

To assemble this actuating assembly, base 12, with attached actuating member 14, is inserted onto container portion 17 until flange 38 is received beneath boss 39, and valve stem 20 is press fit within wall 65. Cooperating structure 16 is then orientated with respect to base 12, as shown in FIGS. 2 and 3, with ribs 95, 96 axially aligned, respectively, with indentations 30, 31, thereby also axially aligning knife edges 81, with strip 43, 44, respectively and either fulcrum notches 87, 90 or fulcrum notches 88, 89 with pivot bars 58. As cooperating structure 16 is secured to base 12, knife edges 81, 80 will sever strips 43, 44 (FIG. 7), thus disengaging actuating member 14 from base 12, and fulcrum notches 87, 90 or 88, 89 will engage pivot bars 58. Cooperating structure 16 is snapped into permanent position by engagement of flanges 95, 96 with the lower retaining surfaces 32, 33 of wall portions 28, 29, respectively.

In operation, as a downward force is applied to manual operating surface 70, actuating member 14 will pivot about the pivot axis defined by the cooperating pivot bars and fulcrum notches. The actuator member is formed of sufficiently rigid material that discharge portion 60 will also therefore pivot about this pivot axis, causing it to move also into the container, thus actuating the tubular valve stem.

Because of the pivotal mode of operation of actuating member 14, some accommodation must be made for the tendency of discharge portion 60 to move radially toward the fulcrum as well as axially. Thus, sufficient slack may be provided between pivot bars and cooperating fulcrum notches to accommodate such movement without interferring with the principal axial movement of the member. Or, either or both of the depending flange pairs 82, 83, 84, defining the fulcrum notches or of the pivot bars 58 of the actuator may be made slightly flexible in this radial direction, so that discharge portion 60 may follow valve stem 20 in a downward axial direction only.

When the actuating force is removed from actuating member 14, the biasing means provided for the valve stem will take over to return the stem and freely attached actuating member to the closed, non-dispensing position.

Other embodiments will occur to those skilled in the art and are within the following claims.

What is claimed is:

1. In a pressurized dispensing package comprising a container and a tubular valve stem for controlling material discharge from the container, said tubular valve stem having an exit port through which material is discharged, and operated, against a biasing means, by manually depressing the valve stem in at least one of an axial and a transverse direction into the container, an actuating assembly comprising an actuating member having a discharge portion for securing said actuating member to said tubular valve stem including a discharge passage between said valve stem exit port and atmosphere, at surface for manually operating said member, and a pivot portion about which the remainder of said member can pivot, and

cooperating structure secured to the container including means defining a fulcrum surface located to constrain movement of said pivot portion when a force is applied to depress said manual operating surface thereby to define with said actuating member a pivot axis about which the discharge portion of said member is pivotable in a direction operating said tubular valve stem, said cooperating structure being further constructed and arranged to allow movement of said pivot portion away from said fulcrum surface in the absence of said force, said fulcrum surface-defining means and said pivot portion mutually comprising a cooperating bar and notch, the one of said bar and notch comprising said pivot portion being located between the one of said notch and bar, respectively, comprising said fulcrum-defining means and the interior of said container, and said bar and notch being mutually located to engage upon depression of said manual operating surface to define said pivot axis, said notch having an opening sufficiently large to allow movement of said bar out of said notch in the absence of said force.

2. A dispensing package according to claim ll, wherein said actuating member includes a first shelf portion extending radially outward from said discharge portion and defining thereon said manual operating surface, and a second shelf portion extending oppositely radially outward from said discharge portion and having said pivot bar formed integrally therewith and located to engage fulcrum-defining notches on said cooperating structure.

3. A dispensing package according to claim 1, wherein said cooperating structure includes a wall portion extending parallel to the axis of said tubular valve stem and radially-spaced therefrom, said wall terminating in one of said bar and said notch defining said fulcrum.

4. In a pressurized dispensing package comprising a container and a tubular valve stem for controlling material discharge from the container, said tubular valve stem having an exit port through which material is discharged, and operated, against a biasing means, by manually depressing the valve stem in at least one of an axial and a transverse direction into the container, an actuating assembly comprising an actuating member having a discharge portion for securing said actuating member to said tubular valve stem including a discharge passage between said valve stem exit port and atmosphere, a surface for manually operating said member, and a pivot portion about which the remainder of said member can pivot, and

cooperating structure secured to the container including means defining a fulcrum totally disconnected from said actuating member but located to engage said pivot por' tion to define therewith a pivot axis about which said member is pivotable upon depressing said manual operating surface to depress said discharge portion, and thereby also said tubular valve stem, into said container,

said fulcrum-defining means and said pivot portion mutually comprising a cooperating bar and notch assembly, the one of said bar and notch comprising said pivot portion being located between the one of said notch and bar, respectively, comprising said fulcrum-defining means and the interior of said container, and said bar and notch mutually located to engage upon depression of said manual operating surface to define said pivot axis,

said cooperating structure including an outer surface defining a cover for said actuating member, having peripherally spaced first and second apertures exposing, respectively, said discharge passage and said manual operating surface, and interior wall portions extending between said apertures, at least one interior wall portion extending parallel to the axis of said tubular valve stem and radially-spaced therefrom, and terminating in said fulcrum-defining means.

d. A dispensing package according to claim 4 wherein said actuating member includes a shelf portion extending radially outward from said discharge portion and terminating in a pair of said pivot bars, and wherein said interior wall portions extend along opposite sides of said shelf portion and each include a fulcrum notch for engaging one of said pivot bars upon actuation of said manual operating surface.

a. An actuating assembly for attachment to a pressurized dispensing package including a container and a tubular valve stem for controlling material discharge from the container, said tubular valve stem having an exit port through which material is discharged, said actuating assembly constructed for manually depressing said tubular valve stem to discharge material therethrough, and comprising a base engageable with said container,

at depressible actuating member having a discharge portion for connection to said tubular valve stem, including a discharge passage between said valve stem exit port and atmosphere,

frangible means extending between said actuating member and said base and formed integrally therewith for supporting said actuating member on said base so that said discharge portion is aligned with said valve stem, and

cooperating structure securable to said container to form an integral part of said dispensing package and including a destructing member located to sever said frangible means upon securing said cooperating structure to said container, to render said actuating assembly operable to depress said valve stem.

7. An actuating assembly according to claim 6 wherein said frangible means comprises a severablc supporting strip formed integrally with said actuating member and said base and extending therebetween, and said destructing member com prises a knife edge located to sever said severable strip upon securing said cooperating structure to said container.

8. An actuating assembly for attachment to a pressurized dispensing package including a container and a tubular valve stem for controlling material discharge from the container, said tubular valve stem having an exit port through which material is discharged, said actuating assembly constructed for manually depressing said tubular valve stem to discharge material therethrough, and comprising a base engageable with said container,

a depressible actuating member having a discharge portion for connection to said tubular valve stem, including a discharge passage between said valve stem exit port and atmosphere,

frangible means extending between said actuating member and said base for supporting said actuating member on said base so that said discharge portion is aligned with said valve stem, and

cooperating structure securable to said container including a destructing member operating on said frangible means to separate said actuating member and said base upon securing said cooperating structure to said container,

said base and said cooperating structure being adapted for successive attachment to said container, and including cooperating retaining means for aligning said base and said cooperating structure with said destructing member positioned for operating on said frangible means, and for thereafter securing said base and said cooperating structure together upon said successive attachment thereof to said container.

9. An actuating assembly for attachment to a pressurized dispensing package including a container and a tubular valve stem for controlling material discharge from the container, said tubular valve stem having an exit port through which material is discharged, said actuating assembly constructed for manually depressing said tubular valve stem to discharge material therethrough, and comprising a base engageable with said container,

a depressible actuating member having a discharge portion for connection to said tubular valve stem, including a discharge passage between said valve stem exit port and atmosphere,

frangible means comprising severable supporting strip extending between and formed integrally with said actuating member and said base for supporting said actuating member on said base so that said discharge portion is aligned with said valve stem, and

cooperating structure securable to said container including a destructing member comprising a knife edge located to sever said severable strip upon securing said cooperating structure to said container,

said actuating member also including, in addition to said discharge portion, a surface for manually operating said member, and a pivot portion about which said member can pivot upon depressing said manual operating surface, and said cooperating structure also including fulcrumdefining means located to engage said pivot portion to define therewith a pivot axis for said actuating member.

10. An actuating assembly according to claim 9 wherein said pivot portion includes a pair of pivot bars formed as extensions from said actuating member and extending along said pivot axis, and said fulcrum-defining means comprises a pair of spaced notches located to engage said pivot bars, respectively, upon depression of said manual operating surface.

11. An actuating assembly according to claim 10 wherein said cooperating structure includes a pair of spaced wall portions located on either side of said actuating member, each wall portion including a depending knife edge for severing one said severable strip, and, spaced therefrom along the lower edge of said wall portion, one of said notches.

12. An actuating assembly according to claim 11 wherein said cooperating structure includes an outer surface defining a cover for said actuating member, and having peripherally spaced first and second apertures exposing, respectively, the said discharge passage and the said manual operating surface of said actuating member, and said spaced wall portions extend interiorly of said outer surface between the adjacent ends of said first and second apertures to define an interior chamber, open at each end, enclosing said actuating member.

Patent Citations
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Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3711030 *Jun 22, 1971Jan 16, 1973Imp Oil LtdMulti-pattern spraying apparatus
US3977572 *Sep 23, 1974Aug 31, 1976Shell Oil CompanyAerosol safety cap secured by a grooved ring
US5649645 *Feb 15, 1995Jul 22, 1997S. C. Johnson & Son, Inc.For use with a conventional aerosol can
US5915599 *Feb 4, 1997Jun 29, 1999Takajasjo Plastic Industry CoShoulder cover
US6237812 *Oct 12, 1999May 29, 2001Eiko-Sha Co. Ltd.Aerosol dispensing system
US6874663 *Aug 8, 2003Apr 5, 2005Christian T. ScheindelDispensing actuator for pressurized container
US20130037582 *Aug 9, 2011Feb 14, 2013Daniel A. AndersenDispensing System
DE2355380A1 *Nov 6, 1973Jul 18, 1974Thomas John SmrtBetaetigungseinrichtung fuer aerosolspruehdosen
EP0041412A1 *Apr 24, 1981Dec 9, 1981L'orealDispensing cap for a pressurised container, and corresponding combination
EP1092650A1Oct 12, 2000Apr 18, 2001Seaquist Perfect Dispensing GmbHProtective cap for an actuating device as well as a packaging and dispensing system for fluids
WO1996026012A2 *Feb 13, 1996Aug 29, 1996Johnson & Son Inc S COvercap sprayer assembly
WO2012094442A1Jan 5, 2012Jul 12, 2012The Gillette CompanyWet friction material for closures for product containers
Classifications
U.S. Classification222/80, 222/541.2, 222/402.13, 222/402.21
International ClassificationB65D83/14, B65D83/16
Cooperative ClassificationB65D83/205, B65D83/228
European ClassificationB65D83/22D4, B65D83/20C