US 3700340 A
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[ 1 Oct. 24, 1972 FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS 919,032 10/1954 Germany.....................401[33 Primary ExaminerLawrence Charles Attorney-Holcombe, Wetherill & Brisebois ABSTRACT The present invention relates to a ratchet-type multicolor ball-point pen, the rotatable cylinder of which is rotated by vertical movement of an actuating stem and which cylinder is provided with an inclined surface, a vertical surface, and a notch between said surfaces, said notch and inclined surface being adapted to cooperate with the tops of a plurality of ink-reservoirs,
and shift said reservoirs successively into the writing position in response to vertical movement of the actuating stem.
5 Claims, 17 Drawing Figures Shingan Terasald, Tokyo, Japan Pen Kabushiki Kaisha, Tokyo, Japan Sept. 8, 1970 Appl. No.: 70,080
References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS Ganz Gossweiler et a1... Gossweiler et a1  U.S.C|.....
Patented Oct. 24, 1972 3 Shoots-Shunt 1 FIG. I
FIG. 2 (A) FIG 2 (CI FIG. 2(8) Patented Oct. 24, 1972 3 Shuts-Sheet 2 FIG. 3(0) FIG. 3(A) FIG. 3(6) FIG. 5
FIG. 6 5
Patented Oct. 24, 1972 3,700,340
3 Sheets-Shut 3 MULTICOLOR BALL-POINT PEN SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION This invention relates to a ratchet-type multicolor ball-point pen.
The principal objective of this invention is to provide a ratchet-type multicolor ball-point pen so constructed that a rotatable cylinder operated by vertical movement of an actuating stem is provided with an inclined surface at its bottom, a vertical surface, and a notch between said surfaces, said inclined surface being positioned to engage caps attached to the tops of a plurality of ink reservoirs so that when said actuating stem is depressed, one of said reservoirs is shifted into the writing position.
Other objects of this invention will become apparent from reading the following description, with reference to the accompanying drawings.
In a conventional multicolor ball-point pen, either the operating members attached to the ink reservoir of the ball-point pen are respectively depressed by the finger, or a depressing stem is caused to act on an ink reservoir of the desired color, so that the depression of said stem holds the writing tip of said reservoir in a writing position. Applicant, however, knows of no ratchet-type multicolor ballpoint pen heretofore devised in which an indiscriminate depression of the actuating stem can shift one of the ink reservoirs to the writing position.
The present invention provides a ratchet-type multicolor ball-point pen by combining a nonrotatable, vertically slidable actuating stern, capped ink-reservoirs, and a rotatable cam or rotor which rotates about a fixed point.
FIG. 1 is a longitudinal section taken through a pen according to this invention;
FIG. 2(A) shows an actuating stern in elevation;
FIG. 2(B) is a side view of said stem taken from the right of FIG. 2(A);
FIG. 2(C) is an end view of said stern;
FIG. 3(A) is a front view of the rotor of the pen;
FIG. 3(8) is a side view of the rotor, taken from the left of FIG. 3(A);
FIG. 3(C) is a rear view of the rotor;
FIG. 3(D) is a developmental view of the inclined surfaces provided within the top part of the rotor;
FIG. 4(A) is a front view of a cap to hold an inkreservoir;
FIG. 4(B) is a partial longitudinal section through the cap of FIG. 4(A);
FIG. 5 is an elevational view of the joint in which the ink-reservoirs are inserted; and
, FIGS. 6-9 illustrate the relationships between the actuating stem, the rotor, and the cap, at various stages of operation.
The drawings show a two-color ball-point pen, comprising a hollow pen-holder I made in two parts screwed together near the middle of the pen. A joint 2 is seated within the pen-holder and provided with two longitudinal bores 2a for receiving ink-reservoirs. The walls of these bores are provided with longitudinal slots 2b near their upper ends, and formed with shoulders 20 which support the bottom ends of coil springs 3. Each ink-reservoir 4, having a writing tip at its bottom is inserted in one of the bores 20 of the joint and the top of each reservoir is covered by a cap 5. The cap 5 carries external longitudinal ribs 5a which taper to a sharp outer edge. Each rib 50 engages in a guide groove 2b. Each coil spring 3 is compressed between a cap and the joint. Reference numeral 6 indicates a substantially cylindrical rotor, the upper part 6a of which is provided with two internal inclined surfaces 6b, as shown in FIG. 3(D), separated by a vertical surface. The lower portion 6c of the rotor abuts the cap rib 5a which projects through a slot 2b in the joint and carries a group of inclined surfaces having the function of depressing or releasing the caps, thereby bringing the pen into a writing or non-writing condition. Specifically, the lower portion 6c of the rotor has curved part-cylindrical surface 6e, a first inclined surface 6f and a second oppositely inclined surface 63 which cooperate to form a notch. The surface 6f adjoins the lower most part of the surface 6e and a vertical surface 6h leads from said second surface 63 to the upper portion of the surface 6e. These inclined surfaces occupy almost half the area of said rotor, the other half being flat. The rotor 6 is mounted for rotation about a fixed point within the pen-holder. Specifically, a shoulder within the penholder engages a shoulder on the rotor 6 and the lower end of the rotor is supported by the top of the joint. The actuating stem 7 projects out of the top of the penholder. The rib 7a at the bottom of this stem slidably engages the longitudinal groove 10 in the pen-holder. The bottom of the rib 7a in the actuating stem 7 has an inclined surface 7b which abuts the inclined surface 6!) of the rotor 6a. A coil spring 8 abuts the top of the cap 5 and the inner shoulder of the actuating stem 7, so as to bias the stem 7 upwardly.
When the actuating stem 7 is depressed, it does not rotate, and the inclined surface 7b at the bottom of the stem rib 7a is in contact with the inclined surface 6b of the rotor 6, so that the actuating stem turns the rotor 6 counterclockwise, as viewed from above, through a predetermined angle. And, since the inclined surface 6e at the bottom of the rotor contacts the cap rib top 5h (see FIG. 6(A)), rotation of the rotor causes the cap rib top 5b to move downwardly against the resistance of the coil spring 3.
When the actuating stem has been pushed down to the limit, the cap rib top 5b assumes the position illustrated in FIG. 8, that is displaced from the intersection X between the surface 6f and the surface 6e, and slightly on the side of the surface 6f. When your finger releases the actuating stem 7, the stem 7 is urged upwardly by the coil spring, and as the cap rib 5b is also being urged upward by the force of the coil spring 3, the rotor 6 is further rotated by the distance between the intersection of the surface 6f with the surface 6e and the surface 63 and consequently the cap rib 5b strikes the surface 63 (see FIGS. 7 (A) and 9). In this position, the rib top 50 engages the surface 6g, while the ink-reservoir associated therewith is supported in a lowered position, ready for writing. On the other hand, the other ink-reservoir, as seen from FIG. 7(B) showing the position of its cap, assumes a retracted position. If, in this position, the stem 7 is pushed slightly down, with the lower stern rib surface 7b in contact with inclined surface of the rotor top, the rotor will be turned to an extent proportional to the extent of depression. This rotation causes the disengagement of the surface 63 of the rotor from the top of the cap rib 5b, resulting in the position shown in H6. 6(B). With the other cap in the position shown in FIG. 6(A), both ink-reservoirs are then retracted.
Repetition of such a ratcheting action will switch the two ink-reservoirs alternately between writing and nonwriting positions and extend and retract them repetitively.
In the case of a three-color ball-point pen, the inclined surface of the rotor is divided into three parts, the surface 6: subtends an angle of 120, and the joint is designed to hold three ink-reservoirs.
As described above, the construction according to this invention is such that a plurality of ink-reservoirs are provided with a cap having a rib at the top; the rib of this cap extends radially away from the axis of the pen-holder; and this rib contacts the inclined surface of the rotor. With this arrangement, it is possible to make a plurality of ink-reservoirs pop successively out of or back into the pen-holder for writing.
What is claimed is:
l. A ratchet-type multicolor ball-point pen comprising:
an elongated casing,
a plurality of ink-reservoirs mounted in said casing for individual sliding movement longitudinally of said casing along substantially parallel lines between a retracted position and a writing position,
first resilient means biassing each reservoir toward its retracted position,
a unitary actuating member mounted for translational sliding movement longitudinally of said casing between a raised position in which one end thereof projects from said casing and a depressed position,
second resilient means biassing said actuating member toward its raised position, and
a rotor mounted in said casing between said actuating member and said reservoirs for rotation about an axis occupying a fixed position, the face of said rotor facing said actuating member being provided with ratchet teeth positioned to be engaged by said actuating member to rotate said rotor when said actuating member is depressed. and the face of said rotor facing said reservoirs being provided with a cam surface positioned to engage cooperating means carried by said reservoirs and shaped to successively advance a reservoir to its writing position as said rotor turns during depression of said actuating member, support said reservoir in said writing position when said actuating member is once depressed, and withdraw said support when said actuating member is next depressed, permitting said first resilient means to return said reservoir to its retracted position.
2. A ball-point pen as claimed in claim 1 in which said cam surface is contoured to maintain one of said reservoirs in its advanced position while the other is retracted, when said rotor is in a first angular position, and to permit both reservoirs to be retracted when said rotor is in a second angular position.
3. A ball-point pen as claimed in claim 1 in which said cam surface comprises an inclined portion which engages said cooperating means as a reservoir is being advan d to its writi sition and a notch at e nd of saicl inclined porti o n aving a sloping side a iac ent said inclined portion, into which notch said cooperating means projects only part way when that reservoir is being supported in its writing position after said actuating member is depressed, said rotor being rotated by contact between said cooperating means and sloping notch side as said cooperating means moves further into said notch until it strikes the other side of said notch when said actuating member is released sufficiently to disengage said actuating member from said ratchet teeth, and the intersection between said sloping notch side and said inclined cam surface being so located relative to said ratchet teeth that the rotation of said rotor by said cooperating means brings a different ratchet tooth into alignment with the tooth-engaging portion of said stem.
4. A ball-point pen as claimed in claim I in which said stem is provided with a longitudinal rib, the lower end of which engages a ratchet tooth when said stem is depressed.
5. A ball-point pen as claimed in claim I in which the cooperating means on each reservoir is a longitudinal, radially projecting rib carried by the cap of said reservoir.
UNITED STATES PATENT OFFICE CERTIFICATE OF CORRECTION Patent No. 3 'ZOO 3 K) Dated October 24, 1972 Inventor(s) SHINGAN RASAKI It is certified that error appears in the above-identified patent and that said Letters Patent are hereby corrected as shown below:
 Foreign Application Priority Data September 18, 1969 Japan SHO 44-88342 Signed and sealed this 6th day of March 1973.
EDWARD M.FLETCHER,JR. ROBERT GOTTSCHALK Attesting Officer Commissioner of Patents FORM FO-IOSO (10-69) USCOMWDC 376$ i U S GOVERNMENT PMNTING OFFICE I909 O358-J34