US 3680745 A
The invention contemplates a particular construction of a tubular plastic neck fitting and cooperating metal container part whereby a child-resistant safety closure feature can be directly applied for controlled selective access to the contents to the container. The safety closure requires a certain resistance to applied rotational torque about the neck axis, and locking formations are provided in the metal-to-plastic interfit such that the required torque resistance is achieved. The construction is also such that the torque resistance is achieved regardless of the angular orientation of the parts upon axial assembly thereof.
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent Landen [4 1 Aug. 1, 1972  CONTAINER CONSTRUCTION FOR A 3,144,964 8/1964 Goff et al. ..222/570 X SAFETY CLOSURE Primary Examiner-Stanley H. Tollberg 2 I ventor. will! L d [7 1 n Conri James an Cheshlre Attorney-Nichol M. Sandoe et al.
 Assignee: Eyelet Specialty Company, Walling- 57 ABSTRACT f rd, C n.
0 on The invention contemplates a particular construction Flled: P 1971 of a tubular plastic neck fitting and cooperating metal ] App[ 173,306 container part whereby a child-resistant safety closure feature can be directly applied for controlled selective access to the contents to the container. The safety clo-  US. Cl ..222/570 Sure requires a certain resistance to applied rotational [5 "B65d torque about the neck axis, and locking formations are [5 1 o are l 533 8 provided in the metal-to-plastic interfit such that the I required torque resistance is achieved. The construc- 5 6 R f CT d tion is also such that the torque resistance is achieved 1 e erences regardless of the angular orientation of the parts upon UNITED STATES PATENTS am! assembly thereof- R25,765 4/1965 Ankney ..222/570 X 16 Claims, 6 Drawing Figures i -1 I I5 &9 4?! /0 I? Z7 Z9 I ""2 PATENTEDAU: 1:972 3680,745
L 4 impy/wad M4 212 TTO. NEYS CONTAINER CONSTRUCTION FOR A SAFETY CLOSURE This invention relates to child-resistant safety-closure devices,-, as of the type disclosed and discussed in considerable detail in my US. Pat. applicationSer. No. 101,879, filed Dec. 28, I970, now US. Pat. No. 3,613,928. v
In said application,- the closure device was described as a single closure cap which is removably securable to a bottle or other container neck, the neck being an integral part of a plastic, container, such as a blowmolded plastic bottle. The cap is a single piece of injection-molded plastic, having internal lug formations to achieve bayonet engagement with corresponding neck formations, and having integral resilient formations which accomplish the dual function of axially loading a container seal, as well as axially loading an anti-rotational dogging feature of the lug formations. The capto-neck engagement is such'that pure clockwise rotational torque achieves a locked setting of the closure, upon snap-in of the dogged engagement. On the other hand, a particular combination of sufficient axial compression, as well as counterclockwise torque, is
required for dislodging the cap from the container.
Certain types of liquid and other materials dangerous to children are betterpackaged in metal than in plastic containers, and it is an object of the present invention to provide a safety-closure device of the character indicated for such metalcontainers.
' A specific object is to provide an adapter neck fitting for ,ready assembly to an otherwise complete metal container and enabling the container to accept a safetyclosure cap of the character indicated, with closuresealing-and locking efficacy'matching that of an allplastic configuration, as in said patent application.
A further specific object is to provide such an adapter and metal-container combination which will enable efficient mass-production filling and closure-of the container. b A general object is to achieve the foregoing objects with a construction involving elemental simplicity of parts, low cost, ease of assembly, and efficiency and safety of ultimate closure,'in spite of repeated opening and closing of the container- Other objects and various further features of the invention will be pointed out or will occur to those skilled in the art from a reading of the following specification, in conjunction with the accompanying drawings. In said drawings, which show, for illustrative purposes only, a
preferred form of the invention:
FIG. 1 is an exploded view in perspective of the top portion of a metal container to which the adapter of the invention has been applied, the closure cap being removed;
FIG. 2 is a perspective view of the adapter of FIG. 1;
FIG. 3 is a plan view of the top metal closure panel of the container of FIG. 1;
FIGS. 4 and 5 are similar vertical sectional views of coacting metal and plastic partsof the invention, the parts being shown in exploded relation in FIG. 4, and in assembled relation in FIG. 5; and
FIG. 6 is an enlarged fragmentary sectional view taken at 6-6 in FIGS. 3 and 5.
The invention is shown in application toa cylindrical container having a circular metal top panel or closure plate 10 to. which a plastic adapter neck fitting 11 has been assembled. The closure plate 10 is generally conical and has a rim formation 12 for conventional permanent sealed attachment to a container body 13. The fitting 11 has locking bayonet-lug formations 14-15 for removable engagement with corresponding lug forma-' tions (not shown) integral with the inner wall of the skirt of closure cap 16, all as set forth in detail in said application. Both the neck fitting l1 and the closure cap 16 may be of injection-molded plastic.
The closure plate 10 is shown with a frusto-conical body 17 between the rim formation 10 and a central opening 18. Adjacent the opening 18, an annular platform or radial surface 19 is'poised for abutment with a corresponding radial surface 20 of the adapter fitting 11. The opening 18 is characterized by circumferentially continuous lip means, of gently rounded sectional contour (best seen in FIG. 4) and terminating in a radially outward lip 21 platform 19. v The neck fitting 11 comprises a tubular neck body 23, of axial extent sufficient to integrally accommodate the bayonet-lug formations 14-15. The bore 24 of body 23 may be cylindrical, with a tapered counterbore 25 at the dispensing end, for liquid-sealing engagement with part of cap 16, as explained in said application. A stout radially outward flange 26 is integral with the base end of body 23, and tubular projection 27 of reduced thickness also extends integrally from body 23. Projection 27 is externally characterized by radially outwardly extending integral plate-retaining means in the form of a circumferentially continuous bead or ridge 28, of maximum diameter D exceeding the diameter D, of opening 18. As shown, bead 28 comprises a first conical cam 29 for gentle engagement with plate 10 at opening 18, upon axial assembly of parts 10-11; a
which is axially offset from the I second and oppositely sloped cam 30 defines the other side of bead 28, terminating substantially at the radial plane of surface 20, and at the inner wall of an annular recess 31. The outer wall of recess 31 is preferably slightly undercut at 32 to locate and receive lip 21.
In accordance with the invention, interengageable anti-rotational locking formations are provided at the abutting radial surfaces 19-20. As shown, such formations comprise angularly spaced projections 33 struck axially upwardly from the platform 19 and corresponding angularly spaced recesses or sockets 34 formed in the surface 20 of flange 26. Preferably, the number of recesses 34 Ban integer multiple of the number of projections 33 (see FIG. 6), so as to assure dog engagement with minimum relative rotation upon assembly, and so as to avoid such local breakage of plate 10 as might result from forming the projections 33 at too close spacings. Preferably also, the side walls 35 of recesses 34 are substantially flat, being radially directed in planes inclined at an angle a with respect to an adjacent plane which includes the axis of opening 18; in similar fashion, the side walls 36 of each projection 33 are characterized by the same radial direction, inclination a, angular width, as the recesses 34. Thus, upon full engagement at 33-34, the radial surfaces 19-20 are in circumferentially continuous abutment.
For a clean appearance, recesses and projections 33-34 terminate short of the outer limit of flange 26, as shown. 7 1
Preferred materials and proportions are as follows. Cap 16 is of injection-molded polypropylene. The neck fitting 11 is injection-molded of medium-density polyethylene, the preferred specific gravity for the material of a so-called 3/4 /4inch noule being in the range from 0.930 to 0.940. In such a nozzle, the bore 24 is 0.75 inch, and the body thickness at 23 is approximately 0.075 inch. The outer diameter of a suitable cap 16 is approximately 1.25 inches. Recesses 34 are approximately 0.040-inch deep (axially), and projections 33 are struck 0.030 to 0.035 inch, preferably with crowned tips as shown.
In use, the closure cap 16 and its neck fitting 11 are preassembled and available for assembly to the metal container 12-13, which may already have been filled with liquid contents. The container 12-13 stands upwardly, exposing the opening 18 to receive the reduced tubular projecting end 27 of fitting 11. Preferably, the downward displacement of fitting 11 (with cap 16) is accompanied by a rotational component, as suggested by crossed arrows in FIG. 6, thereby assuring an accurate homing engagement of the dog formations 33-34. The lip means at 18 transiently locally deforms projection 27 as it rides over bead 28 and snaps into recess 31, being compressionally retained therein, by cam reaction at 30, and by lip engagement at the undercut 32. Thereafter, the anti-rotational locked engagement of the plastic and metal parts -11 is complete and very safely exceeds all torque requirements of the safety-closure means 11-16. For example, for the 3/4%inch nozzle specifically described, the torque involved in setting and removing the safety cap 16 from neck 11 is in the range of 6 to ill inch-pounds, while the anti-rotational locked setting of fitting 11 on plate 10 resists torques exceeding 25 inchpounds.
In an alternative mode of securing the plate 10 and fitting 11, the curled lip 21 at opening 18 is initially axially offset from platform 19 to a slightly greater extent than the axial depth of recess 31. These parts are first assembled to each other in a suitable fixture for so axially compressing the ofiset of lip 21, that lip 21 is slightly radially enlarged, being thereby driven tightly and permanently into the undercut 32, and effectively crimping platform 19 and its locking means 33 to the recesses 34 of surface 20. The preassembly 10-11, with or without cap 16, may then be assembled at 12 to the remainder 13 of the container.
In the preferred assembly of the container, wherein preassembled cap and neck parts 16-11 are pressed and snapped into the FIG. 5 relationship, the basic manipulating thrust and torque components are applied via the cap 16. Such forces exceed those involved in cap placement on and removal from neck 11, but the axial location of flange 26 assures against overcompression of the interfitting cap-to-neck parts. In FIG. 5, the cap 16 is shown in phantom outline, for its locked container-closing position, wherein a liquid seal is established at the flared end 25 of the neck bore; in this relation, the skirt of cap 16 is axially spaced by the amount S from the flange 26. To release the closure, cap 16 must be axially displaced to enable bayonet disengagement, but the distance S is selected to equal or slightly exceed the axial displacement required to permit bayonet-lug disengagement. The described cap l6)-to-flange (26) relation thus assures against excessive axial compression of the closure, both in initial assembly and in later use when gaining access to the container contents.
The described invention will be seen to have achieved all stated objects with structure of elemental simplicity and inherent low cost, as compared with existing structures which do not incorporate child-resistant features. In particular, the locked adapter-toplate engagement is characterized by liquid-sealing properties which complement those served by the indicated type of child-resistant closure, as described in said patent application.
1. In combination, a stamped metal container closure plate having a circular opening, and a tubular plastic neck fitting secured to said plate at said opening, registering adjacent annular circumferentially extending radial surfaces on said plate and neck fitting, angularly spaced interengaged plural local axial projections and recesses on said radial surfaces and retaining the same against relative rotation of said plate and neck fitting, and axially engaged radial flange means on said plate and neck fitting and holding said radial surfaces in circumferentially continuous compressionally loaded axial adjacency, said neck fitting including an axially projecting tubular neck with cap-engaging formations.
2. In combination, a stamped metal container closure plate having a circular opening and a tubular plastic neck fitting secured to said plate at said opening, said neck fitting including an axially extending neck body with cap-engaging formations near the dispensing end thereof, a circumferentially continuous radially outward flange at the base of said neck body, an integral annular reduced neck portion projecting axially beyond said flange, said reduced neck portion extending through the plate opening, radially outwardly extending integral plate-retaining means on said reduced neck portion and axially compressionally loading said plate against said radial flange, and interengaged antirotational locking axially extending formations at an gularly spaced locations on said plate and flange.
3. The combination of claim 2, in which said plateretaining means is a circumferentially continuous bead.
4. The combination of claim 2, in which said plate at said opening comprises an annular radially extending wall abutting said radial flange, and axially extending lip means terminating in a radially outwardly projecting lip that is axially spaced from said wall, said neck fitting having an annular recess in said flange at juncture with said reduced neck portion and receiving said lip means.
5. The combination of claim 4, in which said reduced neck portion is sufficiently thin for transient radial compression in the course of axial assembly of said plate thereto, whereby axially compressed assembly forces radially inward deformation of said plate-retaining means to permit compressed lip entry into and retention within said recess after said lip means has traversed said plate-retaining means.
6. The combination of claim 5, in which said plateretaining means is a circumferentially extending bead having a first flared surface for cam engagement with said lip means upon assembly and having a second and oppositely flared surface adjacent said recess for axially compressionally engaging said lip means to compress said plate against said flange.
7. The combination of claim 2, in which said locking formations comprise angularly spaced bumps in said plate projecting radially toward said flange, said flange having angularly spaced recesses in register with said bumps.
8. The combination of claim 7, in which the number of recesses exceeds the number of bumps and is an integral multiple thereof, there being a relatively thin deformable radial wall portion between recesses of said flange, wherebyv angular relation of said plate and fitting is not critical upon axial assembly thereof.
9. The combination of claim 4, in which said recess has an outer generally cylindrical wall within said flange and adjacent the locking formations of said flange, the axial extent of said recess being limited to abut and interfere with said lip upon assembly, and said lip being deformable upon assembling axial compression into radially'outwardly displaced locally indenting engagement with said cylindrical wall.
10. The combination of claim 4, in which said recess has an outer generally cylindrical wall within said flange and adjacent the locking formations of said flange, said wall having an undercut formation of axial extent to receive and locate said lip upon assembly.
11. The combination of claim 2, in which said capengaging formations are of the bayonet-locking variety.
12. The combination of claim 7, in which said bumps and recesses have generally radially extending matching wall surfaces having non-rotational dogging engagement.
13. The combination of claim 12, in which said matching wall surfaces are inclined substantially 20 degrees to a radial plane which includes the axis of said opening.
14. The combination of claim 2, in which said locking formations are wholly contained within an inner radius greater than that of said opening and an outer radius less than that of said flange.
15. The combination of claim 2, in which the locking formations on said plate are unpierced axial displacements of plate metal.
16. In combination, a container including a stamped metal container closure plate having a circular opening and a tubular plastic neck fitting secured to said plate at said opening, said neck fitting including an axially extending neck body with engaging formations near the dispensing end thereof, a circumferentially continuous radially outward flange at the base of said neck body and seated against the outer side of said plate, an integral annular reduced neck portion projecting axially inwardly through the opening and beyond said flange, said reduced neck portion including radially outwardly extending integral plate-retaining means engaging the inner side of said plate and axially compressionally loading said plate against said radial flange, and interengaged anti-rotational axially extending locking formations at angularly spaced locations on said plate and flange.