US 3707793 A
A hand gun and cartridges therefor, each cartridge being provided with a charge of tear gas or other toxic substance. The gun is generally of elongate compact configuration and is provided with a breech section defining a chamber for receiving tear gas cartridges. The gun includes an elongate stock portion of a size adapted for gripping in the palm of the hand of a user and thumb operative plunger means for selectively discharging a cartridge chambered in the breech section of the gun, and includes a sliding shield member translationally adjustable between positions covering and uncovering the breech chamber.
Claims available in
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United Staes Patent 1 Holton, I1 Jan. 2, 1973 s41 TEAR GAS FIRE ARM MEANS 2,880,543 4 1959 Von Frantzius ..42 1 G  inventor: Samuel Pearce Bolton, 11 4510 S.
W. 74th Street, South Miami, Fla. Pmimry Examl7e' BenJamm Borcheh Assistant Examiner-C. T. Jordan 33143 Attorney-John Cyril Malloy  Filed: Sept. 25, 1970 Appl. No.: 75,534
[5 7 ABSTRACT A hand gun and cartridges therefor, each cartridge being provided with a charge of tear gas or other toxic substance. The gun is generally of elongate compact configuration and is provided with a breech section defining a chamber for receiving tear gas cartridges. The gun includes an elongate stock portion of a size adapted for gripping in the palm of the hand of a user and thumb operative plunger means for selectively discharging a cartridge chambered in the breech section of the gun, and includes a sliding shield member translationally adjustable between positions covering and uncovering the breech chamber.
10 Claims, 6 Drawing Figures PATENTEDJM 2 ms 3' 707193 sum 2 OF 2 INVENTOR.
SIQMUEL PEQRCE' HUI-TON 1T nrroe/usy,
TEAR GAS FIRE ARM MEANS BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION 1. Field of the Invention The invention relates to personal non-lethal fire arm means generally and particularly relates to small hand gun type fire arm means adapted for projecting a blast of tear gas substance or the like.
2. Description of the Prior Art In the past, various hand gun devices have been designed and marketed for personal use and for projecting a charge of non-lethal substance such as tear gas. Such devices may be in the form of aerosol spray canisters with tear gas or other toxic material contained under pressure with a' propellent gas in the canister. Other types of self-defense fire arm means include a gun adapted for firing tear gas cartridges or the like. The instant invention concerns the latter type and particularly is directed toward improving gun-type personal fire arm means, adapted for firing non-lethal tear gas cartridges or the like.
A problem of particular import in the design and operation of the gun-type personal-defense fire arm is in providing a fire arm which is easy to load and use and which may be operated safely. Certain prior art nonlethal gun means are of complex design and are difficult to load or fire during an emergency situation; a user may fire or discharge the fire arm prematurely and before it is properly aimed or directed. In the excitement of an encounter with a robber or the like, a user may find it awkward or difficult to discharge the fire arm effectively. A problem of particular import in the design of a gun-type fire arm for firing non-lethal cartridges, is in guarding the fire arm against unorthodox loading with a fixed round of ammunition or a projectile type cartridge and in conforming to Governmental regulations regarding safety operation of such devices. A problem is in designing a fire arm which is safe against unorthodox use in firing a regular round of ammunition while yet designing a fire arm easy to load and fire non-lethal cartridges, and which is effective in use.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The instant invention obviates many of the abovementioned objectional features in prior art design of personal use gun or cartridge type fire arm means. The non-lethal fire arm means of the instant invention is of substantially simple compact design; it may be safely conveniently carried by a user and may be quickly and easily used in an emergency. The gun device of the invention includes a thumb-operative plunger for discharging the tear gas cartridges; a user moves the plunger rearwardly against spring pressure and releases the plunger in discharging a cartridge. This operating feature reduces substantially the tendency of a person prematurely firing the fire arm in an emergency thus increasing its effectiveness. The non-lethal gun means also includes means safeguarding against unorthodox loading or firing of a regular projectile type cartridge. It is of dual chamber form and operative for simultaneously chambering two cartridges; a user may selectively fire one or the other of the cartridges. The fire arm means of the invention IS of substantially simple durable design admitting of economical manufacture and marketing.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING FIG. 1 is a perspective view of the personal defense fire arm means of the instant invention in an in-use configuration;
FIG. 2 is a front face view of the fire arm means, illustrating the cartridge chamber means of the gun device in an open disposition and illustrating a cartridge displaced from a cartridge chamber of the device;
FIG. 3 is a longitudinal sectional view taken as on the line 33 of FIG. 2, looking in the direction of the arrows;
FIG. 4 is a transverse sectional view taken as on the line 4-4 of FIG. 3, looking in the direction of the arrows;
FIG. 5 is a backside view of the forward portion of the gun device; and
FIG. 6 is a longitudinal sectional view taken as on the line 6-6 of FIG. 5, looking in the direction of the arrows.
DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT The preferred form of the invention, as shown in the drawings, includes a dual-chamber hand gun 12 and tear gas cartridge means as represented by cartridges 14, 14. The cartridges are of typical small-bore-cartridge appearance including a casing 16 having a rim flange 18 and percussion primer and powder means 20, as generally indicated in cartridge 14. A loading of tear gas or other toxic substance 22 is contained in the forward section of the casing 16 and is contained therein by thin-wall plug means 24 sealingly arranged across the open end of the cartridge casing.
The hand gun device 12 primarily includes a generally rectangular hollow body 26 including breech, nozzle and stock sections respectively 28, 30, 32 and a sleeve-like shield 34 shiftably fitted on the breech and muzzle sections 28, 30 of the gun device. The gun body 26 is configured for selectively chambering and discharging two cartridges, as represented by cartridges l4, 14'. The breech section 28 of the body 26 defines dual chambers 36, 36' for receiving the cartridges I4, 14'; the nozzle section 30 defines dual blast openings 38, 38' communicating respectively with the breech chambers 36, 36'; the stock section 32, in addition to providing hand-grip means for manipulating the gun device, also provides housing means for operably supportingdual plunger assemblies 40, 40', operative for selectively discharging the cartridges chambered in the breech section.
The plunger assemblies 40, 40' include respectively a plunger body 42, 42' defining tip portions 44, 44' adapted for striking and discharging the cartridges 14, 14, and includes thumb knob portions 46, 46' supported respectively on the plunger bodies 42, 42 and operative for thumb-manipulating the plunger tip portions 44, 44' in discharging the cartridges. The plunger bodies 42, 42, of the assemblies 40, 40', preferably are of a form including respectively a metal core 48, 48' telescopically received in a hollow plunger rod 50, 50', preferably formed of dense plastic material.
Referring to FIG. 3, for showing the construction of both the plunger assemblies 40, 40, the plunger body 42 includes the metal core 48 mounted in a socket opening 52 of the plastic plunger rod 50. The plunger core 48 preferably is provided with a forward fluted portion 54 and a smooth cylindrical rearward portion 56. The core 48 is snugly telescopically received in the socket opening 52 with the fluted portion 54 snugly engaging the cylindrical interior of the socket opening. The plunger body 42 is guidingly constrained in an elongate enclosure 58 extending longitudinally in the stock section 32 of the gun body 26. The plunger body 42 is coaxially constrained in the stock enclosure 58 with the tip portion 44 of the plunger core 48 being in coaxial alignment with the primer 20 of a cartridge contained in the chamber 36 of the breech section 28.
Coiled compression springs 66, 66 are housed in the rearward portions respectively of the enclosures 58, 58 and tensioned respectively between the plunger rod elements 50, 50' and the butt wall 62 of the gun body stock section 32. The rearward portions respectively of the plunger rod elements 50, 50' are of reduced diameter, defining shoulder portions 68, 68'; the rearward reduced portions respectively of the plunger rod elements 50, 50' are concentrically received in the forward portions of the springs 66, 66' and coaxially support respectively the springs and plunger bodies 42, 42' in the enclosures 58, 58' of the gun body stock section.
The stock section 32 preferably is of two-part form including a lower part 70 and an upper part 72 joined together along a plane of abutment 74. The stock section is of lateral symmetrical form and the lower part 70, in addition to the butt wall 62, includes a medial wall 76 extending longitudinally of the stock section and side walls 78, 78' arranged on opposite sides of the medial wall 76, and a bottom wall 80. The lower part 70 of the stock section preferably is of integral form; the vertical walls 62, 76, 78, 78' and the bottom wall 80, preferably are integrally constructed of plastic material. The lower part 70 of the stock section also preferably is unitarily formed with the breech and muzzle sections 28, 30. The upper part 72 isrectangular plate form and fixedly fastened, as by chemical fusing, to the lower part 70 on the plane of abutment 74.
The thumb knobs 46, 46' respectively of the plunger assemblies 40, 40 preferably are of plastic material construction and integrally connected with the cylindrical rod portions 50, 50' of the plunger body structure respectively by shank portions 82, 82'. Slot and notch openings 84, 86 and 84', 86' are correspondingly formed in the stock section upper part 72 and receive respectively the shank portions 82, 82' of the thumb knob elements 46, 46'. The plunger striker tip portions 44, 44' respectively of the assemblies 40, 40' are retracted rearwardly in the stock section 32 by thumbpressing respectively the knob elements 46, 46' rearwardly and respectively against the tension of springs 66, 66'. The main slot structure 84, 84' formed of the upper part 72 of the stock section 32 defines guideway means receiving respectively the thumb knob shank portions 82, 82' in translational shifting movement as the plunger elements are thumb-retracted against spring pressure and released to discharge respectively a cartridge chambered in the breech section.
The notch structure 86, 86' arranged respectively on corresponding sides of the main slot openings 84, 84' define lock notch means for maintaining respectively the plunger tip portions 44, 44 in partially retracted configuration. For example, a user of the gun device, may arrange the plunger tip 44 in a disposition partially retracted and spaced from a chambered cartridge by pressing the thumb knob 46 rearwardly a distance sufficient for turnably displacing the thumb knob laterally and engaging the shank portion 82 in the lock notch 86. While cartridges 14, 14' are chambered in the breech section 28, the gun device may be manipulated to a safety condition by partially retracting the plunger tips 44, 44' and positioning the shank portions 82, 82 in the lock notch structure 86, 86'. In using the gun device, a user has only to shift the shank portion of a respective thumb knob from its lock notch structure, retract the plunger tip fully rearwardly in the main slot structure and then release the knob permitting the plunger tip to strike and discharge the cartridge.
The chambers 36, 36' and the blast openings 38, 38' respectively of the breech and muzzle sections 28 and 38 preferably are U-shaped and terminate respectively in a common plane 88 (see FIG. 3). The integrally formed breech and muzzle sections are generally of E- configuration in transverse section and defined by a bottom wall 90 and upstanding vertical walls including a medial wall 92 and opposite side walls 94, 94'. The cartridge chambers in the breech section include structure defining U-shaped recesses 96, 96 adapted to receive respectively the rim flange elements 18, 18 of the cartridges 14,- 14'. U-shaped abutment structure 98, 98' also preferably is provided in the forward portion of the stock section 32 for abuttingly engaging the rim flange portions l8, 18 respectively of the cartridges. The abutment structure 98, 98' is adapted for receiving the reaction thrust of a cartridge casing 16 upon discharging the cartridge. The abutment structure 98, 98 may function also as abutment means for limiting the forward displacement respectively of the plunger body structure 42, 42' when a plunger is retracted and released without a cartridge being chambered in the breech section. The confronting side wall surfaces 100, 100; 100', 100' respectively of the blast openings 38, 38' of the muzzle section respectively are divergingly configured or splayed outwardly for causing effective dispersion of a projected blast of toxic substance of a cartridge. The shield member 34 preferably is formed of dense slightly resilient plastic material and configured for a snug but free shifting fit on the forward portion of the gun body 26. The shield member 34 preferably includes an annular main portion, generally rectangular in transverse section, and defined substantially by upper and lower walls 102, 104 and opposite side walls 106, 106'. The shield member is adapted to be axially manipulated between a retracted active configuration covering the breech chambers 36, 36 (FIG. 1) and an extended inactive configuration uncovering the breech chamber (FIG. 2). The cartridges l4 and l4 are in? serted in the breech chambers 36, 36' when the shield member 34 is displaced forwardly to an extended configuration; the shield member 34 is retracted rearwardly against the stop bead portion 108 of the stock section when the gun device is in loaded configuration.
The gun device preferably includes detent means operative between the shield member 34 and the breech section 28 for releasably holding the shield member in an active configuration covering the breech chambers. The detent means preferably includes a tongue portion 110 of the shield member 34 and structure defining tit and dimple surfaces 112 and 114 formed respectively on the tongue portion and the gun body breech section. The tit surface 112 projects inwardly on the distal end of the tongue portion 110 and is adapted to matingly engage the dimple surface 114 formed on the exterior of the breech section adjacent the stop bead 108 (see FIGS. 5 and 6). The resilient character of the plastic material of construction of the shield member tongue 1 10 permits the tongue to spring inwardly and outwardly respectively in engaging and disengaging the tit and dimple surfaces respectively upon axial manipulation of the shield member between active and inactive configuration.
An elongate sloping recess 1 16 also preferably is provided in the undersurface of the muzzle bottom wall 90, in longitudinal alignment with the dimple surface 114. The tit surface 112 of the shield member tongue portion 110 is adapted to be received in the recess 116 when the shield member is moved forwardly to a disposition uncovering the cartridge chambers 36, 36'. Upon outward forward movement of the shield member 34, the engaging of the tit surface 112 of the tongue portion with the recess 116, provides means for limiting the outward movement of the shield member and inadvertent removal of the shield member from the gun body. However, should it be desired to remove the shield member from the gun body, a user has only to exert additional forward pressure on the shield member, disengaging the tongue tit surface 112 from the sloping recess 116; the shield member may be telescopically fitted again on the forward portion of the gun body by engaging the tit surface 112 of the tongue portion with the chamfered leading edge 118 of the muzzle section and moving the shield rearwardly to a disposition engaging the tit surface with the recess 116.
The tear gas fire arm means also preferably is provided with safety means for preventing unorthodox firing of a regular bullet or projectile type cartridge. A pair of lug projections 120, 120 preferably are integrally formed on the muzzle section of the gun body; the projections 120, 120 preferably are integrally formed of the bottom wall 90 of the muzzle section and protrude respectively in the blast openings 38, 38. The lug projections 120, 120' function as safety means for preventing unorthodox loading of a cartridge or insertion of a cartridge in the muzzle of the gun device. The obstruction lugs 120, 120 also function for preventing loading of a bullet-type cartridge in the chambers 36, 36'. Upon attempting to chamber a bullet-type cartridge, the lug projections 120, 120' abuttingly engage the bullet end of the cartridge preventing unorthodox chambering of such a cartridge.
The gun device also preferably includes additional safeguard means operative in the remote possibility that a projectile type cartridge would be fired in the chambers 36, 36. The gun is designed so that if in some unforeseen manner, a regular round of amunition is chambered and tired in the gun, that such an occurrence may not cause critical injury to a user of the gun or to another person. This safety feature is facilitated by constructing the shield member 34 so that it will fracture or disunite upon the firing ofa regular projectile type cartridge. The backside of the annular shield member 34 preferably is provided with a pair of slot openings 122, 122 intersecting the rearward edge 124 of the shield member. The slot openings 122, 122, in addition to defining the resilient tongue portion of the detent means of the shield member, also provide means for weakening the shield member respectively along longitudinal axes generally indicated X and X. If in some unforeseen manner a projectile type cartridge should be chambered and fired, the shield member is designed to separate or disunite, particularly at the weakened areas X and X. Such action prevents buildup of an explosive force in a chamber 36 or 36 sufficient for obtaining velocity of a projectile through the muzzle of the gun and permits dissipation of the explosive force through disruption of the shield member.
In using the fire arm means of the invention, a user inserts the cartridges in the chambers 36, 36', retracts the shield member to a closed configuration and manipulates the plunger elements to partially retracted safety locked disposition as shown in FIG. 1. To discharge the gun device, a user grasps the stock portion in the palm of his hand and with his thumb retracts and releases a selected one of the plungers, discharging a respective cartridge and projecting the tear gas or toxic substance through the muzzle section of the gun device.
While the instant invention is shown and described in a preferred embodiment, it is recognized that various changes and modification may be made in the embodiment shown without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention.
What is claimed is:
1. Tear gas disseminating fire arm means for selfdefense use comprising a tear gas cartridge including a casing, a loading of toxic substance contained in the casing, a charge of explosive propellent material, and percussion primer and propellant means for discharging the toxic substance from the cartridge casing; a hand gun for selectively discharging the cartridge and directionally projecting a discharge blast of the toxic substance, said gun being of elongate form and having forward and rearward ends and front and back sides, and including a body having breech; muzzle and stock sections arranged generally coaxially, with said breech section defining an elongate chamber transversely U- shaped, opening to the front side of said gun body and adapted for receiving a cartridge in movement laterally of the axis of the breech chamber, said fire arm means including nozzle defining a blast opening communicating with the breech chamber for projecting the toxic substance, a shield member, finger-manipulative and operative selectively for covering and uncovering the breech chamber, a plunger having a tip portion, means guidingly constraining said plunger in the stock section of said gun body in a disposition permitting axial movement between a retracted disposition with the plunger tip distant from the cartridge primer, to an extended disposition engaging the tip with the primer, spring means forcibly urging said plunger to an extended position, and knob means connected with said plunger for retracting and releasing the plunger.
2. Tear gas fire arm means as set forth in claim 1 which includes plunger lock means selectively operative for releasably fixing said plunger in a partially retracted configuration.
3. Tear gas fire arm means as set forth in claim 2 wherein said knob means includes a knob portion and a shank portion connecting the knob portion with said plunger, wherein the front side of the gun body stock section is provided with slot structure guidingly receiving the shank portion of said knob means, including a main longitudinal slot guidingly constraining the knob means during retracting and releasing the plunger, and wherein said plunger lock means includes a lock notch laterally intersecting said main slot for removablyreceiving the shank portion of said knob means in releasably fixing said plunger in the partially retracted configuration.
4. Tear gas fire arm means as set forth in claim 3 including a lug protruding slightly from the interspacial lateral boundary of the blast opening of said muzzle section.
5. Tear gas fire arm means as set forth in claim 1 wherein said blast opening is transversely U-shaped and arranged in corresponding alignment with the U- shaped breech chamber, wherein said shield member is sleeve-like and configured for sliding shifting fit on the muzzle section of said gun body, and adapted to be axially manipulated between retracted active configuration covering the breech chamber, and an extended inactive configuration uncovering the breech chamber.
6. Tear gas fire arm means as set forth in claim 5 including detent means operative between said shield member and muzzle section for releasably holding said shield member in an active configuration covering the breech chamber.
7. Tear gas fire arm means as set forth in claim 6 wherein said shield member includes an annular main portion circumferentially arranged about said body muzzle section and wherein said detent means includes a resilient tongue portion extending rearwardly from said main portion of said shield member, and includes mating tit and dimple surfaces formed respectively on said tongue and breech portions, adapted for detentmating engagement when said shield member is in a retracted active configuration covering the chamber of said breech section.
8. Tear gas fire arm means as set forth in claim 7 wherein said shield member is provided with a pair of slot openings intersecting the rearward edge of the shield member and with the parent material of the shield member, between the pair of slots, being of resilient plastic character and forming the resilient tongue means of said detent means.
9. Tear gas fire arm means as set forth in claim 8 wherein said pair of slot openings formed in said shield member, in addition to providing spring tongue means for said detent means, also provide weakened areas in the circumferential structure of said shield member, permitting disuniting of the shield member at the weakened areas upon the discharge of an explosive force in said breech chamber exceeding a certain magnitude.
l0. Tear gas fire arm means as set forth in claim 1 wherein said gun is configured for simultaneously chambering two tear gas cartridges, and includes means independently operative for selectively discharging the cartridges, wherein said gun includes dual breech chambers, nozzle openings, plungers and knob means, and wherein said shield member is configured for simultaneously coverin or uncovering the dual breech chambers upon selec ive axial manipulation of the shield member between active and inactive configuration.