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Publication numberUS3698585 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateOct 17, 1972
Filing dateFeb 18, 1971
Priority dateFeb 18, 1971
Publication numberUS 3698585 A, US 3698585A, US-A-3698585, US3698585 A, US3698585A
InventorsPietro Anthony J De, Smith Bernard
Original AssigneePietro Anthony J De, Smith Bernard
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Safety container top
US 3698585 A
Images(3)
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent Smith et al.

[451 Oct. 17,1972

[S4] SAFETY CONTAINER TOP [72] Inventors: Bernard Smith, 7102 Plymouth Road, Baltimore, Md. 21208; Anthony J. De Pietro, 208 School Lane, Springfield, Pa. 19064 [22] Filed: Feb. 18, 1971 [2]] Appl. No.: 116,418

3,338,444 8/1967 Velt 215/9- Primary Examiner-George T. Hall Attorney-Louis V. Schiavo [57] ABSTRACT An inner cap member adapted for being threaded onto the neck of a bottle for closing the opening therein mounts an outer cap member which interlocks with the inner cap member when it is turned in a direction to apply the inner cap member to the bottle. When turned in the opposite direction, i.e., in a direction to remove the inner cap member from the bottle, the outer cap member normally does not interlock with the inner cap member, as a consequence of which it turns freely about the inner cap member without turning the same. However, it may be made to interlock with the inner cap member when it is desired 1 to remove the same from the bottle.

15 Claims, 11 Drawing Figures PATENTEnnm 17 I972 3.698.585

sum-:1 1 nr 3 TNVENTORSI.

BERNARD SMITH ANTHONY J. DePlETRO ATTORNEY.

PATENIEDIIBHYIBTZ Y Y 3.698.585

SHEET 3 UF 3 F I 9 v INVENTORS.

BERNARD SMITH ANTHONY J. DePlETRO ATTORNEY.

v SAFETY CONTAINER TOP BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION 1. Field of the Invention This invention relates generally to closures for containers, and particularly to a unitary safety device for closing the opening in the externally threaded neck of a container.

2. Description of the Prior Art US. Pat. No. 3,338,444 discloses a safety bottle top consisting of inner and outer cap members mounted one upon the other for relative rotation. The top may be rotated as a unit in a right-hand direction, i.e., in the direction for applying the top to a bottle, or as a unit in a left hand direction, i.e., in the direction for removing the top from a bottle. Rotation in a left hand direction for removing the top from -a bottle requires certain manipulative steps which may be executed by young children only with substantial difficulty. However, said steps are only a slight inconvenience for adults. The safety cap has not proved to be entirely satisfactory,

particularly from the standpoint of practical utility. For

example, provision is made for relative axial movement of the inner and outer cap members, i.e., the outer cap member may be moved axially between a first position wherein it will interlock with the inner cap member and another position wherein it will not interlock with the inner cap member. As a consequence, to apply the top to or remove it from the bottle, it is not only necessary to turn the outer cap member, but also to hold it in the first of said positions so that it will. interlock with the inner cap member. In addition, when the outer cap member is in the first of said positions, it extends axially downwardly beyond the inner cap member. Thus the neck of the bottle must be longer than would otherwise be necessary.

Furthermore, the outer cap member is loosely disposed about the inner cap member for relative rotative and axial movement. Nevertheless, the two cap members must be disposed in concentric relation, as a consequence of which the fit of the cylindrical sidewall of the outer cap member about the cylindrical sidewall of the inner cap member must be very close. Accordingly, the cylindrical sidewall of the outer cap member must be sufficiently strong to prevent its being radially deformed into frictional engagement with the cylindrical sidewall of the inner cap member. Otherwise, the outer cap member may friction'ally engage the inner cap member when it is turned in top removing direction and remove the same from the bottle.

Still further, interlocking of the outer cap member with the inner cap member is effected by a lug depending from the top of the outer cap member and engaging in a recess formed in the top of the inner cap member, as a consequence of which the top wall of the inner cap member must be made thicker than would otherwise be necessary.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION An important object of the present invention is to provide a safety bottle top comprising inner and outer cap members axially fixed relatively and so arranged that the outer cap member may be turned in a left hand direction without interlocking withand rotating the inner cap member, but cannot be rotated in a right hand direction without interlocking with and rotating the inner cap member.

Another object of the present invention is to provide such a top for use with a bottle having a neck which is not unduly long.

Another object of the present invention is to provide such a top wherein novel means is provided for securing the outer cap member in concentric relation to the inner cap member and a space is provided between the cylindrical sidewalls of the innerand outer cap members to help guard against frictional engagement therebetween when the cylindrical sidewall of the outer cap member is radially deformed.

Another object of the present invention is to free the top of the inner cap member of all recesses or depressions, thus eliminating the necessity for making the top of the inner cap member unduly thick.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 is a top view of a safety bottle top embodying the present invention, showing the inner and outer cap members interlocked for being turned in a right hand direction to apply the top to a bottle;

FIG. 2 is a section on lines II-II in FIG. 1;

FIG. 3 is a top view of the safety bottle top embodying the present invention, showing the inner and outer cap' members interlocked for being turned in a left hand direction to remove the top from a bottle;

FIG. 4 is a section on lines IV-IV in FIG. 3;

FIG. Sis a section on lines V-Vin FIG. 3;

FIG. 6 is similar to FIG. 1, but shows a condition which occurs when the inner and outer cap members are not interlocked and the outer cap member is turned in a left hand direction;

FIG. 7 is a top view of a modified form of the safety bottle top;

FIG. 8 is a section on lines VIII-VIII in FIG. 7;

FIG. 9.is similar to FIG. 8, but shows the inner and outer cap members interlocked for being turned in a left hand direction to remove the top from a bottle;

- FIG. 10 is a section on lines XX in FIG. 8; and

FIG. 11 is a section on lines XI-XI in FIG. 9.

The following description is directed to the specific form of the invention illustrated in the drawings. It is not addressed to the scope of the invention, which may be practiced in other forms.

Referring particularly to FIGS. 1 through 6, the safety bottle top constructed in accordance with the invention, generally designated 10, consists of an inner cap member 12 mounting an outer cap member 14, each of which may be molded or otherwise made of suitable plastic material. The inner cap member, for example, may be compression molded of a hard, unyielding plastic material, such as a urea compound. The outer cap member, for example, may be injection molded of a somewhat flexible, smooth plastic material which has a greasy hand, such as high density polyethylene.

The inner cap member 12 has a hollow cylindrical sidewall 16 and an integral cross-axially extending wall 18 closing one end or the top thereof. The opposite end of the sidewall 16 is open, and extending about the outside'of the rim thus formed is a bead 20. Integral with the wall 18 is a diametrically extending abutment 22 rectangular in transverse section and provided with an axially tapered centrally disposed depression 24 for a purpose to appear. The inner surface of the sidewall 16 is provided with a spiral groove 26. The outer surface of the sidewall 16 is axially tapered slightly, the larger diameter being at the open, beaded end thereof.

The outer cap member 14 overlies the inner cap member 12. It is provided with a hollow cylindrical sidewall 28 and an integral cross-axially extending wall 30 closing one end or the top thereof and seated upon the abutment 22. The opposite end of the sidewall 28 is open, and extending about the inside of the rim thus formed is a groove 32 which accommodates the bead 20. The outer surface of the sidewall 28 is provided with a series of longitudinally extending serrations 34. Integral with the wall 30 and depending therefrom is a centrally disposed axially tapered protuberance 36 accommodated by the depression 24.

An area of the wall 30 is separated from 'the remainder of the wall 30 by a cut 38 to form a rectangular tongue 40 extending from the sidewall 28 toward the protuberance 36. As best shown in FIG. 2, in the relaxed condition of the tongue 40, the undersurface thereof is coplanar with the remainder of the wall 30. At the sidewall 28, the tongue 40 corresponds in thickness to the remainder of the wall 30, but it increases substantially in thickness toward the tip 44 thereof, terminating in a flat, blunt end the surface 42 of which is disposed in a plane extending upwardly and rearwardly from the tip, as shown. As best shown in phantom in FIG. 5, the length of the tongue 40 is such that the tip thereof, designated 44, is disposed close adjacent the abutment 22 when the cap members 12 and 14 are disposed relatively as shown in FIG. 3.

Integral with the wall 30 and depending therefrom is a ramp formation 46. As shown in FIGS. 1 and 3, the ramp is arcuately shaped, concentric with the outer. cap member 14 and radially spaced inwardly a substantial distance from the sidewall 28. One end of the ramp, designated 48, feathers into and merges smoothly with the undersurface of the wall 30. From the end 48, the ramp surface 50 slopes gradually to the opposite end of the ramp, designated 52. The end 52 is of a height somewhat less than the height of the abutment 22. When the cap members 12 and 14 are disposed relatively as shown in FIGS. 1 and 2, the end 52 squarely engages the opposed side of the abutment 22.

The safety bottle cap may be applied to the threaded neck of a bottle by simply=turning the outer cap member 14 in a right hand direction. Initially, the outer cap member 14 will turn freely about the inner cap member 12, but when the cap members are disposed relatively as shown in FIGS. 1 and 2, the end 52 of the ramp engages, i.e., it interlocks with, the opposed side of the abutment 22. Continued turning of the outer cap member 14 in a right hand direction results in turning of both cap members as a unit in a right hand direction and threading of the inner cap member onto the neck of the bottle.

After the safety bottle top 10 has been applied to the threaded neck of a bottle, the outer cap member 14 may be turned in a left hand direction without turning the inner cap member 12. Initially, the outer cap member 14 will turn freely about the inner cap member 12. Then, with its end 48 leading, the ramp 46 will ratchet first over one end and then over the other end of the abutment 22. Each time it does so, the wall 30 flexes upwardly and raises the protuberance 36 partially out of the depression 24, as shown in FIG. 6.

Provision is made against radially deforming the sidewall 28 inwardly sufficiently to cause it to frictionally engage the sidewall 16. To this end, the sidewall 28 may be made suitably thick. However, additional precautions are desirable.

Accordingly, an annular space 54 is provided between the outer surface of the sidewall 16 and the inner surface of the sidewall 28, and protuberance 36 is of such a length that it'cannotcompletely disengage from the depression 24 when the ramp 46 ratchets over the abutment 22..Protuberance 36 accommodated by depression 24 serves to secure the cap members 12 and 14 in concentric relation.

The safety. bottle top 10 may be removed from the threaded neck of a bottle by turning the outer cap member 14 in a left hand direction as described hereinabove and simultaneously pressing downwardly on the tongue 40. When the cap members 12 and 14 are disposed relatively as shown in FIG. 3, the tongue 40 will be depressed and thus move from the position shown in phantom to that shown in full lines in FIG. 5. It will be noted that in the full line position, the flat, blunt end 42 of the tongue squarely engages, i.e., it interlocks with, the opposed side of the abutment 22. Continued turning of the outer cap member 14 in a left hand direction, with the tongue 40 depressed, results in turning of both cap members as a unit in a left hand direction and removal of the inner cap member from the neck of the bottle. I

It will be noted that the cap members 12 and 14 are axially fixed relatively by reason of the wall 30 being disposed in close overlying relation to the abutment 22, and further by reason of the bead 20 being accommodated by the groove 32. Accordingly, the outer cap member 14 cannot be rotated in a right hand direction without interlocking with and rotating the inner cap member 12, and further the neck of a bottle to which the safety bottle top 10 is applied need not be substantially longer than the inside length of the inner cap member 12, i.e., the length of the inner cap member under the wall 18.

By reason of the fact that the cap members 12 and 14 are maintained in concentric relation by the protuberance 36 accommodated by the depression 24 and by the bead 20 accommodated by the groove 32, and by reason of the fact that an annular space is provided between the sidewalls 16 and 28, the sidewalls 16 and 28 are secured against frictional engagement when the side-wall 28 of the cap member 14 is radially deformed.

In addition, it will be noted that the wall 18 is devoid of any depressions which would necessitate making the wall 18 unduly thick.

It will be appreciated that should a child of tender years attempt to remove the safety bottle top 10 from a bottle, he will simply attempt to pull or turn it off. Pulling will be ineffective because of the threaded connection. Turning will also be ineffective because the outer cap member 14 will turn freely without turning the inner cap member 12. A child of tender years is not likely to realize that he must not only turn the outer cap member 14 in a left hand direction, but also simultaneously keep the tongue 40 depressed. While the safety bottle top is simple in its mode of operation, if the mode of operation is known, it nevertheless requires manual dexterity and strength which young children are not likely to have.

While in accordance with the provisions of the patent statutes, we have illustrated and described the best form of the embodiment of our invention now known to us, it will be apparent to those skilled in the art that changes may be made .in the form of the safety bottle top described without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention as set forth in the appended claims, and that in some cases certain features of our invention may be used to advantage without a corresponding use of other features.

To keep the operator from inserting-an instrument, e.g., a knife, into the cut 38 and lifting the tongue 30, thus ruining the safety bottle top in an effort to remove it from a bottle, the modified form of the top illustrated in FIGS. 7 through 11 may be used.

This modified form of the safety bottle top, designated 1 10, consists of an inner cap member 112 and an outer cap member 114 in every respect similar respectively to the inner and outer cap members 12 and 14, described hereinabove in connection with the embodiment of FIGS. 1 through 6, except as pointed out hereinafter.

The end wall of the outer cap member, designated 116, is provided with a tongue 118 corresponding to the tongue 40 of the embodiment of FIGS. 1 through 6. However, while the cut 38 by which the tongue 40 is separated from the remainder of the end wall 30 extends clear through the end wall 30, the corresponding cut 120 which defines the tongue 1 18 extends only part way into the undersurface of the end wall 116. As a consequence, a thin, flexible web 122 is left interconnecting both sides and the tip of the tongue 118 to the remainder of the end wall 116. Preferably, the cut 120 is approximately as wide as the end wall 116 is thick. The portion of the cut 120 extending across the tip of the tongue 118 is disposed over the underlying abutment extending across the top of the inner cap member 112, as shown in FIGS. 7 through 9.

When the tongue 118 is depressed, as shown in FIG. 9, the web 122 is deformed, as shown in FIGS. 9 and 11, and the tip of the tongue is positioned for interlocking with the abutment. In view of the detailed description of the. safety bottle top of FIGS. 1 through 6, any further description of the safety'bottle top of FIGS. 7 through 1 l is deemed to be unnecessary.

What is claimed is:

1. In a safety container top, the combination comprising A. an inner cap member including a. an internally threaded first cylindrical sidewall,

b. a cross-axially extending first end wall closing one end of said first sidewall, the other end being open, and

c. abutment means carried by said first end wall,

B. an outer cap member overlying said'inner cap member including a. a second cylindrical sidewall, and

b. a resiliently flexible cross-axially extending second end wall closing one end of said second sidewall and disposed in close overlying relation to said abutment means, the other end being open.

C. coacting means at the open ends of said sidewalls securing said sidewalls against relative axial movement,

D. a ramp formationdepending from one area of said second end wall, said formation being disposed radially inwardly a substantial distance from said second sidewall, and when said outer cap member is turned in one direction being operative for engaging said abutment and thereby turning said inner cap member in said direction, and when said outer cap member is turned in the opposite direction being operative for ratcheting over said abutment means without turning said inner cap member, said second end wall being resiliently flexed upwardly in response to passage of said ramp over said abutment, and

E. another area of said second end wall forming a tongue extending inwardly from said second sidewall, said tongue, when resiliently depressed toward said first end wall, being operative to engage said abutment means for turning of said cap members as a unit when turned in said opposite Y direction. 1

2. The combination according to claim 1 wherein the ramp is arcuate in shape, and the ramp surface slopes gradually from one end to the other, the low end of the rampfeathering into and merging smoothly with the undersurface of the second end wall.

3. The combination according to claim 2 wherein the ramp is substantial in width, and, when the ramp and abutment means are interlocked for applying the inner cap member, the opposed abutting surfaces thereof are squarely engaged over a substantial area disposed in a plane normal to the end walls.

4. The combination according to claim 1 wherein coacting means are provided respectively on the second end wall and the abutment means operative for maintaining the end walls in concentric relation.

5. The combination according to claim 4 wherein the coacting means maintaining the end walls in concentric relation includes a centrally disposed protuberance depending from the secondend wall and fitting into a depression formed in the abutment means.

6. The combination according to claim 5 wherein the second end wall is seated upon the abutment means, the centrally disposed protuberance depending therefrom is of a length substantially greater than the height of the ramp, and the depression into which said protuberance fits is of a depth sufficient to accommodate said protuberance but insufficient to penetrate the first end wall.

7. The combination according to claim 4 wherein the means securing the sidewalls against relative axial movement includes a bead extending about one of the sidewalls and fitted into a groove extending about the other of said sidewalls, and an annular space extending axially substantially the full distance between said head and the second end wall is provided between said sidewalls.

8. The combination according to claim 7 wherein the outside surface of the first sidewall is axially tapered from a given diameter at the closed end thereof to a larger diameter at the open end thereof, and the inside surface of the second sidewall is substantially uniform in diameter throughout the length thereof.

9. The combination according to claim 1 wherein a portion of the abutment means is disposed radially outwardly from the center of the first end wall, and a portion of the tongue, at the tip thereof, is disposed for engaging said portion of the abutment means when said tongue is depressed toward the first end wall.

10. The combination according to claim 9 wherein the abutment means extends diametrically across the first end wall and is substantial in width, and the tongue terminates in a tip set back from the center of the second end wall a distance corresponding substantially to one-half the width of said abutment means.

l l. The combination according to claim 10 wherein the abutment means is rectangular in transverse section, the longitudinally extending opposite sidewalls thereof are disposed substantially at right angles to the end walls respectively of the cap members, and the tongue terminates in a flat, blunt end the surface of which is disposed in a plane which extends upwardly and rearwardly from the tip of the tongue at an angle such that when the tongue is depressed toward the first end wall said surface is disposed substantially at right angles to said end walls respectively of cap members.

12. The combination according to claim 1 wherein the tongue progressively increases in thickness from the rear end thereof toward the tip thereof so that in the relaxed condition of said tongue the undersurface thereof is coplanar with the undersurface of thesecond end wall and in the depressed condition of the tongue the upper surface thereof is coplanar with the upper surface of said second end wall.

13.The combination according to claim 1 wherein a thin, flexible web is provided spanning a cut in the undersurface of the second end wall defining the tongue.

14. The combination according to claim 13 wherein the tongue defining cut is of a width approximately corresponding to the thickness of the second end wall.

15. The combination according to claim 14 wherein the abutment means extends diametrically across the first end wall and is substantial in width, and the tongue terminates in a tip set back from the center of the second end wall a distance corresponding substantially to one-half the width of said abutment means.

Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3869058 *Jan 26, 1973Mar 4, 1975Bogert ClaytonSafety closure for containers
US5509550 *Jan 5, 1995Apr 23, 1996Primary Delivery Systems, Inc.Child resistant cap with automatic release key
US6564958 *Dec 9, 1999May 20, 2003Crown Cork & Seal Technologies CorporationTamper evident closures
WO2012057843A1Feb 22, 2011May 3, 2012Accudial Pharmaceutical, Inc.Fluid safety dispenser system
WO2012057844A1Feb 22, 2011May 3, 2012Accudial Pharmaceutical, Inc.Spring loaded fluid safety dispenser system
WO2012057845A1Feb 22, 2011May 3, 2012Accudial Pharmaceutical, Inc.Fluid safety dispenser
WO2013003293A1Jun 26, 2012Jan 3, 2013Accudial Pharmaceutical, Inc.Fluid safety dispenser
Classifications
U.S. Classification215/220
International ClassificationB65D50/00, B65D50/04
Cooperative ClassificationB65D50/041
European ClassificationB65D50/04B