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Publication numberUS3701454 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateOct 31, 1972
Filing dateJul 6, 1971
Priority dateJul 6, 1971
Publication numberUS 3701454 A, US 3701454A, US-A-3701454, US3701454 A, US3701454A
InventorsThorp Richard Conrad
Original AssigneeAmerican Can Co
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Easy opening container closure
US 3701454 A
Abstract  available in
Images(1)
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent Thorp s4] EASY OPENINGCONTAINER CLOSURE [72] Inventor: Richard Conrad Thorp, Crystal Lake, 111.

[73] Assignee: American Can Company, Greenwich, Conn.

221 Filed: July 6,1971 21 Appl.No.: 159,651

[52] U.S. Cl ...220/54, 220/27, 215/46 A,

232/541 [51] Int. Cl. ..B65d 17/20 [58] Field of Search ..220l54, 27, 47; 215/46 A; 222/541 [56] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 3,380,609 4/l9 68 Potts ..2-l5/46 A [451 Oct. 31, 1972 3,410,435 11/1968 Kopczynski ..2 l 5/46A Primary Examiner-George T. Hall Attorney -kobert P. Auber et al.-

[ ABSTRACT An easy-open end closure for attachment to a container body is provided which has a top panel, a peripheral depending skirt, a pair of score lines defining'a partial opening closure section which includes a portion of the skirt and a portion of the top panel, a tab connected to the section for tearing the partial opening section along the score lines to provide a limited opening through the closure, anotherpair of score lines defining a full opening closure section which includes a portion of the skirt anda portion of the top panel, and another tab connected to the full opening closure section for tearing the same along the other pair of score lines to effect removal of the entire end closure from the container.

18 Claims, 7 Drawing Figures PNENTED N 31 1973 3 O1, 454

INVENTOR.

mam/e1) (0mm WW BACKGROUND OF THEINVENTION This invention relates to easy opening container end closures and more particularly to easy opening end closures which are scored to provide tear sections for opening the container.

End closures or caps for containers, such as cans and bottles, have been used which had a top panel and a peripheral skirt that was rolled or crimped around a peripheral closure retaining bead at the mouth or open end of the container body. One easy-open feature in such closures, has, been a. full-open, easy-openfeature, that included a pair of score lines in the panel and skirt, and a tab associated withthe score lines. The tab was adapted to be pulled upwardly to tear the closure section between the pair ofscore lines and, permit the closure to be entirely removedfrom the container body. Such a full-open feature allowed the mouth of the container bodytobe fully revealed and accessible to the consumer. There has been a .need, however, for an easy-open feature for a closure of this type which would allow the consumer to open, at his option, either a portion of the mouth of the container body or the entire mouth of the container body. Such a closure incorporating means for both full-opening and partial-opening thereof, would allow the consumer of a beverage,

for example, to either drink,.pour, or spoon from a fully-opened container or drink or pour from a partially-opened container.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION vention to provide aplural-opening container end clo-. sure having an easy-open feature which permits the .user to selectively, readilypartially open or. fully open a container.

Another object of the. invention is to provide a novel end closure for a container wherein easy-open features are provided on the closure enabling a'consumer to selectively readily providea partial opening inthe closure or readily remove the entireclosure fromthe container body.

Still another object is to provide a container body and end closure therefor wherein the end clos urehas a pair of easy-opening features that maybe selectively operated to provide either an opening oflimited size or the removal of the end closure from the container body.

In accordance with one aspect of thepresent invention an end closure for a container is provided having an end wall, a peripheral side wall for connection with a container body, a first score line pattern defining a first tear section including a portion of the end wall and a portion of the side wall, a tab connected tothe first tear section for tearing the same along the first score line pattern, the first tear section when torn providing a partial opening inthe closure, a second score line pattern defining a second tear section including a portion of the end wall and another portion of the side wall, and another tab connected to the second tear section-for tearing the same along the second score linepattern, the second tear section when torn providing a full opening for the container.

These and other objects and advantages of the present invention will become apparent from the following detailed description and accompanying drawing wherein a preferred embodiment is shown.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a container having a closure member embodying the present invention;

FIG. 2 is a cross-sectional view taken along the line 22 of FIG. 1;

FIG. 3 is a fragmentary perspective view of the container of FIG. 1 but with the container opened by one of the easy open devices;

FIG. 4 is a fragmentary perspective view of the container of FIG. 1 rotated about the vertical axis thereof; I

FIG. 5 is a fragmentary perspective view similar to FIG. 4 but with a second easy-open device shown partially activated;

FIG. 6 is a plan view, on a reduced scale, showing layout of end closures in phantom as formed from sheet material; and

FIG. 7 is a cross-sectional view, on a reduced scale of .an end closure of FIG. 1 before it is attached to a con- :tainer body.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT be formed integrally withbody 12 or maybe a conventionalmetal end attached to the bottom of the body 12 such as by rolling or double seaming it thereto.

As seen more clearly in FIG. 2, the body 12 is provided with an upper necked-in portion 17 which has an inclined portion 18 extending radially inwardly and that connects with a vertically extending portion 20. Connected to the portion 20 is a closure retaining bead or curl 22 at the open mouth of the, body 12.

The top end closure 16 is shown as a cap formed, for example, from sheet metal, such as aluminum. The cap 16 has a top panel 24 which is shown substantially flat, and a peripheral or annular depending side wall or skirt 26 connected to the panel 24 at the peripheral annular edge or corner bend 28 of the panel. The skirt 26 of the illustrated cap 16, is a cylindrical depending skirt portion (FIG. 7) before it is attached to the upper open end or mouth of the container body 12. As seen more clearly in FIG. 2, the skirt 26 is shown crimped or rolled around bead 22. The inner side of the skirt has tents indicated at 32 in the drawing. Cap 16 is provided with a pair of easy-open devicesindicated generally at 36 (FIG. 1) and 38 (FIG. 4).

As best seen in FIG. 1; easy-open device 36 includes a tear section 40 defined by a pair of score lines or grooves 41 and 42 extending from the lower edge 44 of the cap 16 at one side of the cap, across the skirt 26, and partially over the top panel 24 toward the opposite side of the cap. The tear section 40 is shown also including a score line 46 interconnecting score lines 41 and 42. The easy-open device 36 also includes a downwardly extending pull tab 45 connected to the tear section 40 at the lower edge 44 of the cap. A pair of tear promoting notches 47 are provided in the skirt 26 immediately adjacent each side of the tab 45. The tab 45 has a pull ring 48 integrally connected therewith. Thus, tear section 40 includes a portion of the top panel 24 and a minor portion of the skirt 26 between score lines 41 and 42.

The score lines 41, 42 and 46 provide a score pattern such that when it is desired to open the container by utilizing easy-open device 36, the pull ring 48 is grasped and pulled outwardly and upwardly so that the tear section 40 is torn along these score lines, which, in the embodiment shown, produce a relatively small opening 50 in the panel 24, as seen in FIG. 3. In this case, the entire easy-open device 36 including tear section 40 is removed from the cap 16 while the remainder of the cap stays on the container body 12.

The easy-open device 38, which is seen more fully in FIG. 4, includes a tear section 52 defined by a pair of scorelines 54 and 56 extending from the lower edge 44 of cap 16 across the skirt 26, and preferably completely across the panel 24. Easy-open device 38 also includes a downwardly extending pulltab 58 connected to tear section 52 at the lower edge 44 of the cap. A pair of tear promoting notches 59 are formed in the skirt 26 immediately adjacent each side of the tab 58. Tab 58 also has a pull ring 60 which is shown integrally connected thereto.

The score lines 54 and 56 of tear section 52 are shown extending entirely across the panel 24, around the cap edge 28, and downwardly partially across the skirt 26 at the opposite'side of the cap. In FIGS. 1 and 3 the score lines 54 and 56 are shown extending down the skirt 26 but stopping short of the lower cap edge 44.

With the score pattern shown defined by the score lines 54 and 56 in the drawing, pulling outwardly and then upwardly on pull ring v60 will effect tearing of tear section 52 out of the skirt 26 between the score lines, and by pulling the tab 58 across the panel 24, the tear section will be torn out of the plane of the panel, such as indicated in FIG. 5. By continuing to pull tab 58 across the panel 24, tear section 52 will be torn completely across the panel 24, around the edge or corner 28 and partially down the skirt 26 at the opposite side of the cap where these score lines terminate. As the tab 58 is further pulled in a direction away from the container, the tear section 52 causes the remaining side sections of the cap indicated at 64 and 66 which are integrally connected thereto by a portion of the skirt 26 to be moved laterally away from each other and off of the container bead. The side sections .64 and 66 are integrally connected to the tear section 52 by a portion of the skirt 26 adjacent the terminal ends of score lines 54 and 56. These side sections 64 and 66 bend outwardly and remain with the tear section 52 so that the entire cap 16 with its seal is removed from the container 10.

FIG. 6 illustrates a manner of punching and forming a plurality of container caps 16 from sheet material 70.

The caps are shown in phantom layout with the tabs 45 and 58 of each cap diametrically at opposite sides of the panel 24 to minimize waste material.

In FIG. 7 a cap 16 is shown in its completed form but before being attached to acontainer body 12. During seaming or rolling of the cap onto the mouth of the body 12, the tabs 45 and 58 are of course flattened against the periphery of the body as indicated in FIGS. 1 and 4 where they are shown substantially vertical and parallel with the body 12.

In the illustrated embodiment, the score lines 54 and 56 of the full-open device 38 extend from the tab portion 58 (FIG. 4) and diverge from one side of the cap to the other. The section 40 of the partial-open device 36 is diametrically opposite easy-open device 38, and extends into the tear section 52 of device 38. With this arrangement when the partial-open ring 48 of tab 45 is utilized to partially open the can or provide a limited opening, a portion of tear section 52 is removed, as seen in FIG. 3. The limited opening 50 in FIG.-3, is preferably less than half of the area of the top panel. The opening 50 permits use of a straw in the case where the product is liquid, such as a beverage or semi-liquid, such as a frozen or semi-frozen consumable product. The opening 50 may also be used where desired for pouring or drinking.

When the entire cap 16 is removed by utilizing the easy-open device 38 the entire end of the container body is open and the container bead 22 exposed. This full-open feature permits pouring, drinking, or spooning of the product 32 from the container 10.

The cap 16 thus allows the consumer to select the form or type of opening through which the contents can be removed.

Various score patterns are of course possible. Preferably, the score lines 54 and 56, as in the illustrated embodiment, do not extend entirely across the skirt at that side of the cap 16 opposite tab 58 (FIG. I) so that when the cap is fully removed, the sections 64 and 66 remain connected to the tear section 52, as previously mentioned herein. The tear section 40-of the limited access or partial-open device 36, of course, also remains with the other portions of the cap so that all portions of the cap 16 can be removed together when it is desired to use device 38.

It is thought that the invention and many of its attendant advantages will be understood from the foregoing description and it will be apparent that various changes may be made in the form, construction and arrangement of the parts without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention or sacrificing all of its material advantages, the form hereinbefore described being merely a preferred embodiment thereof.

What is claimed is:

1. An end closure for a container comprising a top panel, a peripheral side wall connected to said panel and extending therefrom to receive an open end of a container body, a first score pattern defining a first tear section including a portion of said side wall and a portion of said panel, first tab means connected to said side wall portion and adapted to be grasped for tearing said first tear section along said first score pattern, said panel portion being great enough to permit removal of the entire closure from a container body when said first tear section is torn along said first tear pattern, a second score pattern defining a second tear section in cluding another portion of said side wall and a part of said panels and second tab means connected to said other side wall portion to be grasped for tearing said second tear section along said second score pattern, said second tear section when torn along said second score pattern providing a limited opening through the closure.

2. The closure according to claim 1 wherein said part of said panel extends into said first tear section.

3. The closure according to claim 2 wherein said first and second tab means are on diametrically opposite sides of said panel.

4. The closure according to claim 1 wherein'said side wall is cylindrical, and said first and second tab means are disposed substantially 180 apart.

5. The closure according to claim 4 wherein the closure is formed of a metal.

6. The closure according to claim 5 wherein said second tear section is detachable from the end closure.

7. The closure according to claim 5 wherein said first score pattern includes a first pair of score lines extending from the lower peripheral edge of said side wall, upwardly through said side wall, and at least partially across said top panel.

8. The closure according to claim 7 wherein said first pair of score lines extend across said top panel, around the peripheral edge of said panel, and downwardly toward said lower peripheral edge to a terminal point spaced from said last named edge.

9. The closure according to claim 8 wherein said score lines of said first pair diverge from each other across said top panel.

10. The closure according to claim 9 wherein said second score line pattern includes a second pair of score lines extending from the lower peripheral edge of said side wall, across said side wall, and partially across said top panel between said score lines of said first pair.

11. The end closure according to 10 wherein said second score pattern includes a third score line con- I necting with said score lines of said second pair whereby said second tear section is detachable from said panel.

12. in combination, a container body having peripheral bead means at one end thereof, and an end closure attached to said body, said end closure comprising a top panel, an annular, peripheral depending shirt integral with said end closure, said skirt being formed around said bead and having a bottom peripheral edge, sealing means between said skirt and said bead to effect a seal therebetween, a first score pattern defining afirst tear section including a first por- 'tion of said skirt and a first portion of said top panel, first tab means connected to said first skirt portion at said bottom peripheral edge thereof and adapted to be grasped for tearing said first tear section along said first score pattern, said first tear section being proportioned to permit removal of the entire end closure from said container, when torn along said first score pattern, a second score pattern defining a second tear section including a second portion of said skirt and a part of said panel, and second tab means connected to said other portion of said skirt and adapted to be grasped for tearing said second tear section along said second score pattern to provide a limited access opening in said end closure.

13. The combination according to claim 12 wherein said first tear section includes another portion of said skirt at the terminal end of said tear section.

. he combination according to claim 12 wherein said second tear section includes a portion of said first tear section.

15. The combination according to claim 14 wherein said first score pattern includes a pair of score lines which diverge from one end to the opposite of said first tear section and terminate in said skirt on opposite sides of said second skirt portion.

16. The combination according to claim 15 wherein said end closure is a single piece metal member.

17. The combination according to claim 16 wherein said first and second tab means are integral with said skirt and are disposed approximately apart.

18. The combination according to claim 17 wherein said first and second tab means extend downwardly substantially parallel with said container body.

Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3773209 *Dec 30, 1971Nov 20, 1973American Can CoFull or partial opening easy-open container end closure
US3933264 *Sep 20, 1974Jan 20, 1976Tropicana Products, Inc.Container and cap with tear strip
US4049122 *Oct 21, 1974Sep 20, 1977Maxwell Earl GNestable non-corrosive container for pressurized beverages and processes for manufacture and handling thereof
US4184605 *Oct 20, 1978Jan 22, 1980Hanson Paul TContainer opening means
US4209126 *Jan 12, 1979Jun 24, 1980Boise Cascade CorporationPatch top closure member including a monoaxially oriented film layer
US4215793 *Nov 29, 1978Aug 5, 1980George PackardAnti-spill lid
US4318493 *Sep 26, 1980Mar 9, 1982The Continental Group, Inc.Easy opening container
US4318494 *Sep 26, 1980Mar 9, 1982The Continental Group, Inc.Easy opening container with vent means
US4872597 *Oct 13, 1988Oct 10, 1989Hisao HanafusaBeverage container with dual dispensing tabs
US5908058 *Aug 29, 1997Jun 1, 1999Goglio; LuigiContainer for granular products, particularly coffee, and relative support for emptying into a bar coffee grinder
US7845514 *Mar 6, 2007Dec 7, 2010Dixie Consumer Products LlcFilled polystyrene tear back container lids
US8025171Aug 8, 2003Sep 27, 2011Firestar AgFuel tin
US8109404Mar 21, 2011Feb 7, 2012Snap Seals, Inc.Cap for shipping and storage containers including two types of tamper evidence
US9321562Aug 30, 2012Apr 26, 2016World Bottling Cap LlcBottle crown with opener assembly
US20080217346 *Mar 6, 2007Sep 11, 2008Dixie Consumer Products LlcFilled polystyrene tear back container lids
US20110168660 *Mar 21, 2011Jul 14, 2011Chmela James FTamper Evident Cap for Shipping and Storage Containers
US20150203245 *Jul 11, 2013Jul 23, 2015Mark GayerMulti-portion removable cover apparatus and related methods
CN100398403CAug 8, 2003Jul 2, 2008火之星有限公司Fuel tin
DE19542193A1 *Nov 13, 1995May 15, 1997Horst BenzenhoeferOpenable metal drinks can
WO1996039333A1 *Jun 1, 1996Dec 12, 1996Carnaudmetalbox S.A.Packaging container made from sheet metal and a manufacturing tool
WO1998036981A1 *Feb 9, 1998Aug 27, 1998Christophe SaisDrink can with hygienically protected drinking portion and opening
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WO2004016514A1 *Aug 8, 2003Feb 26, 2004Firestar AgFuel tin
WO2004110883A2 *Jun 11, 2004Dec 23, 2004Zanatta Eucir AntonioCan for packing drinks
WO2004110883A3 *Jun 11, 2004Aug 4, 2005Eucir Antonio ZanattaCan for packing drinks
WO2013081638A1 *Dec 23, 2011Jun 6, 2013Abe FrishmanEasy pull bottle cap
Classifications
U.S. Classification220/270, 426/123, 222/541.9
International ClassificationB65D17/50, B65D17/00, B65D, B65D41/00
Cooperative ClassificationB65D17/165
European ClassificationB65D17/16B2
Legal Events
DateCodeEventDescription
Aug 14, 1987ASAssignment
Owner name: AMERICAN CAN PACKAGING INC., AMERICAN LANE, GREENW
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST.;ASSIGNOR:AMERICAN CAN COMPANY, A NJ CORP.;REEL/FRAME:004835/0338
Effective date: 19861107
Owner name: AMERICAN NATIONAL CAN COMPANY
Free format text: MERGER;ASSIGNORS:AMERICAN CAN PACKAGING INC.;TRAFALGAR INDUSTRIES, INC. (MERGED INTO);NATIONAL CAN CORPORATION (CHANGED TO);REEL/FRAME:004835/0354
Effective date: 19870430
Owner name: AMERICAN CAN PACKAGING INC.,CONNECTICUT
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNOR:AMERICAN CAN COMPANY, A NJ CORP.;REEL/FRAME:4835/338
Free format text: MERGER;ASSIGNORS:AMERICAN CAN PACKAGING INC.;TRAFALGAR INDUSTRIES, INC. (MERGED INTO);NATIONAL CAN CORPORATION (CHANGED TO);REEL/FRAME:4835/354
Owner name: AMERICAN NATIONAL CAN COMPANY,STATELESS
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNOR:AMERICAN CAN COMPANY, A NJ CORP.;REEL/FRAME:004835/0338
Owner name: AMERICAN CAN PACKAGING INC., CONNECTICUT
Owner name: AMERICAN NATIONAL CAN COMPANY, STATELESS