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Publication numberUS3786968 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJan 22, 1974
Filing dateAug 18, 1972
Priority dateAug 18, 1972
Publication numberUS 3786968 A, US 3786968A, US-A-3786968, US3786968 A, US3786968A
InventorsEwald R
Original AssigneeSeaquist Valve Co
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Childproof safety adaptor
US 3786968 A
Abstract
A childproof safety adaptor for an aerosol dispenser comprising an adaptor having a pair of spaced finger guides attached thereto by resilient interconnecting means, each finger guide includes a locking ledge arranged to operatively engage the button actuator to prevent actuaton of the dispenser when in the "locked" position. The spaced separation of the finger guides is such that a finger inserted therebetween moves the finger guides outward relative to each other moving the locking ledges out of operative engagement with the button actuator thereby permitting vertical movement of the button actuator for actuation and wherein upon removal of the finger from between the finger guides, the locking ledges automatically return to the "locked" position.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

I United States Patent 91 [111 3,786,968

Ewald 1 Jan. 22, 1974 CHILDPROOF SAFETY ADAPTOR 3,651,993 3/1972 Venus, Jr. 222 153 [75] Inventor: Ronald F. Ewald, Rolling Meadows,

I1] Primary Examiner-Robert B. Reeves Assistant ExaminerNorman L. Stack, Jr. [73] Assrgnee: Seaqulst Valve Company, DIVISIOII of Attorney, Agent or FirmStein & Oman Plttway, Cary, 11].

[22] Filed: Aug. 18, 1972 [57] ABSTRACT [21] Appl' 281917 A childproof safety adaptor for an aerosol dispenser comprising an adaptor having a pair of spaced finger [52] US. Cl. 22/402.11, 221/ 152 guides attached thereto by resilient interconnecting [51] Int. Cl B65d 83/14 means, each finger guide includes a locking ledge ar- [58] Field ofSearch... ZZZ/402.11, 153,402.14, 182; ranged to operatively engage the button actuator to 215/9; 220/85 P; 221/151, 152; 292/DlG. 65; prevent actuaton of the dispenser when in the 200/169 R, 172 R, 61.79 locked position. The spaced separation of the finger guides is such that a finger inserted therebetween [56] References Cited moves the finger guides outward relative to each other UNITED STATES PATENTS moving the locking ledges out of operative engage- 3 666 338 5/1972 RusselL I 29Z/DIGF6S ment with the button actuator thereby permitting ver- 3:693:543 10/1972 z 222/182 x tical movement of the button actuator for actuation 2 93 39 5 9 0 Pearson 292/1310 5 and wherein upon removal of the finger from between 3,698,604 10/1972 Nigro 222/182 the finger guides, the locking ledges automatically re- 3,608,785 9/1971 Purjo et a1. ZZZ/402.13 turn to the locked position. 3,712,515 l/1973 Corll 222/182 3,554,366 1/1971 Corll 222/182 X 9 Claims, 12 Drawing Figures all PATENTED JAN22I974 StEEIZBFZ 1 CHILDPROOF SAFETY ADAPTOR.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION l. Field of the Invention This invention relates to a childproof safety adaptor for an aerosol dispenser comprising an adaptor including a pair of locking ledges which cooperatively engage the button actuator to prevent actuation of the dispenser when the adaptor is in the locked position.

2. Description of the Prior Art Since the introduction. of aerosol dispensers, there has been a continuing problem of inadvertent actuation of the dispensers. Unless some means to prevent accidental discharge of the aerosol during transportation and storage is provided, the consumer is not assured of purchasing a fully charged aerosol.

Another, more serious problem is that of young dren discharging the aerosol contents. This is particularly critical when the product is a cleaning agent, insecticide or other potentially hazardous matter commonly found in the home.

Numerous attempts have been made to provide tamerproof and childproof dispensers. The earliest and simplest of these is the cup-like overcap configured to detachably attach over the mounting cup and button actuator of the dispenser. Unfortunately, the simplicity of operation allows young children to remove the protective overcap from the dispenser with little effort. In addition, the separate overcap may inadvertently be left off the dispenser thereby removing the safety feature.

One of the principal obstacles in developing an effective childproof dispenser has been to design a dispenser which is reasonably simple for an adult to use and still be beyond the capabilities of young children. Most of the more effective designs comprise mechanisms which require a definite sequence of positioning the dispenser in the locked or unlocked configuration. The dispenser must be relocked by repositioning the locking' mechanism. As a result, the childproofing feature is subject to being inadvertently defeated by failure to relock the device. Unfortunately many existing tamperproof dispensers include elaborate locking mechanisms which are complex in structure and prohibitively expensive to manufacture. In addition, these mechanisms usually require changes or redesign of the basic dispenser and valve assembly structure thereby increasing production costs.

Thus, while numerous attempts have been made to design and manufacture an inexpensive, effective tamperproof/childproof aerosol dispenser, substantial room for development and improvement remains.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION This invention relates to a child safety adaptor for an aerosol dispenser including means to prevent actuation of the dispenser by a finger of a predetermined dimension. More specifically, the present invention comprises an adaptor having a pair of spaced finger guides,

each including a locking ledge.

chileachother by a pair of resilient spring arms attached to the annular base. The locking ledges formed on the finger guides normally engage the button actuator to prevent actuation of the dispenser.

In an alternative embodiment, a button depressor is added. The button depressor comprises a substantially cylindrical body including a centrally disposed button actuator recess formed therein to receive a button actuator attached to the valve stem. In this configuration, the locking ledges engage the button depressor rather than the button actuator.

As previously described, the locking ledges are biased in the normally locked position by the resilient spring arms. In the locked position, the locking ledges operatively engage the button actuator to pre-- vent vertical movement or actuation of the dispenser.

To actuate the dispenser, the operator inserts a finger between the finger guides toward the button actuator. The space between the finger guide is such that when an adult finger is inserted therebetween, the finger impinges againstthe sides thereof expanding the guides outward relative to each other. As a result, the locking ledges are moved out of cooperative engagement with the button actuator to permit actuation because the button actuator is clear to pass inside the locking ledges.

To deactuate, the finger is withdrawn allowing the finger guides and locking ledges to move inwardly toward the normally locked position. With the finger removed, the biasing spring in the valveforces the button actuator upward until the locking ledges again operatively engage the button actuator. The system is thus automatically locked until reactuated. The space between the finger guides is such that a small finger such as a childs finger is not wide enough to move the locking ledges out of operative engagement with the button actuator. v

' Actuation of the alternative embodiment having a button depressor is similar in operation. By inserting a finger between the finger guides, the locking ledges are moved out of operative engagement with the button depressor, allowing the depressor to engage the button actuatorand actuate the dispenser. Deactivation is siniilar to the basic embodiment except that as the operators finger is withdrawn, the locking ledges engage the button depressor to hold 'it out of operative engagement from the button actuator.

Although as described, the adaptor is attached to the mounting cup, it should be understood that the adaptor may be attached to the dispenser can itself.

This invention accordingly comprises the features of construction,combinations of elements and arrangement of parts which will be exemplified in the construction hereinafter set forth, 'and the scope of the invention will be indicated in the claims.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS For a fuller understanding of the nature of the-invention, reference should be had to the following detailed description taken in connection with accompanying drawings in which:

FIG. 1 is a top view of the safety adaptor in the locked" position. 7

FIG. 2 is a cross-sectional side view of the safety adaptor mounted on an aerosol dispenser taken along line 22 of FIG. 1.

FIG. 3 is a top view of the safety adaptor in the actuated position.

FIG. 4 is a detailed cross-sectional front view of the safety adaptor taken along line 44 of FIG. 3.

FIG. 5 is a cross-sectional front view of an alternate embodiment of the safety adaptor in the locked position.

FIG. 6 is a cross-sectional front view of an alternate embodiment of the safety adaptor in the actuated position.

FIG. 7 is a cross-sectional front view of another alternate embodiment of the safety adaptor in the locked position.

FIG. 8 is a cross-sectional top view of still another alternate embodiment of the safety adaptor.

FIG. 9 is a cross-sectional side view of still another alternate embodiment of the safety adaptor.

FIG. 10 is a cross-sectional top view of still another alternate embodiment of the safety adaptor.

FIG. 1 l is a top view of another alternative embodiment.

FIG. 12 is a side view of the alternative embodiment of FIG. ll.

Similar reference characters refer to similar parts throughout the several views of the drawings.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT The invention, as shown in FIGS. 1 through 4, comprises a substantially cylindrical adaptor 10 including a pair of finger guides 18 and and locking ledges and 32 attached to a mounting cup 12.

The adaptor 10 comprises a horizontally disposed circular base 14 including aperture 16 and a pair of finger guides 18 and 20 attached thereto by a pair of resilient spring arms 22 and 24 respectively which extend rearwardly from the base 14. Finger guides 18 and 2t) cooperatively form a finger passage 19 therebetween. An annular skirt 26 depends from the outer periphery of the base 14. An inwardly projecting annular lip 28 is formed on the lower portion of skirt 26 to attach the adaptor 10 to the aerosol container 11. The finger guides 18 and 20 include locking ledges 30, and 32 respectively which are normally biased beneath. the button actuator 34 (FIG. I) to prevent vertical movement of the button actuator. As best shown in FIGS. 1 and 3,. the inside surfaces 36 and 38 of guide fingers 18 and 20 may be contoured inwardly toward the bottom for ease of actuation.

FIGS. 5 and 6 show an alternative embodiment including a button depressor 40 including notches 41 and 43 formed in the periphery thereof. In this embodiment, the adaptor 42 comprises a substantially cylindrical interconnecting means 44 and a pair of substantially vertical finger guides 46 and 48 attached to the upper portion thereof. A pair of substantially horizontal locking ledges 50 and 52, formed on the lower portion of finger guides 46 and 48 respectively, are normally biased (FIG. 4) in operative engagement with notches 41 and 43. The finger guides 46 and 48 cooperatively form finger passage 54 therebetween. The adaptor 42 is snap fitted to the mounting cup 12 by inwardly projecting annular lip 56. As shown in FIG. 5, the operative engagement of notches 41 and 42 with locking ledges 50 and 52 prevents the operative engagement of button depressor 40 and button actuator 34.

FIG. 7 shows the adaptor of FIGS. 5 and 6 without the button depressor 40. In this embodiment, locking ledges and 52 may engage notches 58 and 60 respectively formed in the sides of button actuator 34 (right side of FIG. 7) to prevent vertical movement of the button actuator 34 when in the locked position or simply engage the bottom surface of either actuator or depressor indicated or 62 and 64 respecitvely (left side of FIG. 7).

FIGS. 8 and 9 show still another alternative embodiment of the present invention. As best shown in FIG. 8, the mounting cup adaptor comprises a cupshaped overcap 72 including a substantially vertical annular side wall 74 having a spray passage 76 formed in the side thereof opposite the spray orifice 35 of button actuator 34. A pair of vertically disposed finger guides 78 and 80 are attached to the rear portion of the side wall 74 by resilient spring arms 82 and 84 respectively. The finger guides 78 and 80 cooperatively form finger passage 86. In addition, a pair of actuator guards 92 and 94 are formed on finger guides 78 and 80 respectively.

FIG. 10 shows the adaptor as a cup-shaped overcap 96 including a substantially vertical annular side wall 98 having a spray passage 100 formed in the side thereof opposite the spray orifice 35 of button actuator 34. Finger passage 102 is formed in the side wall 98 above and adjacent to lip extension 104. When mounted on a dispenser by the annular rings 106 and 108, the button actuator 34 extends upwardly through aperture 110 into recess 112.

FIGS. 11 and 12 show another embodiment wherein the adaptor is attached or integrally formed on the button actuator 34. As shown in FIGS. 11 and 12, the adaptor 10 comprises an annular base 14 including aperture 16 and a pair of finger guides 18and 20 extending upwardly therefrom. The adaptor is attached to the button actuator 34 by a resilient spring arm 22 rearwardly from the forward portion of the base 14. Finger guides 18 and 20 cooperatively form a finger passage 19 therebetween. The finger guides 18 and 20 include locking ledges 30 and 32 respectively which are normally biased beneath the button actuator 34 (FIG. 11) to prevent vertical movement of the button actuator 34. As best shown in FIG. 11 the inside surfaces 36 and 38 of guide fingers 18 and 20 may be contoured inwardly toward the bottom for easing actuation.

As shown in FIG. 4, to actuate the dispenser, the operator inserts a finger into the finger passage 19 toward the button acutator 34. The spaced separation of the finger guides 18 and 20 is such that an adult finger will force the guides 18 and 20 outwardly relative to each other moving the lock ledges 30 and 32 out of. operative engagement with the button actuator 34 thereby permitting vertical movement of the button actuator 34 to dispose product from the dispenser.

To deactuate, the finger is withdrawn from the finger passage 19 allowing the finger guides 18 and 20 and locking ledges 30 and 32 to move inwardly toward the normally locked position. With the finger removed, the biasing spring of the valve (not shown) forces the button actuator 34 upward until the locking ledges 30 and 32 again operatively engage the button actuator 34. The system is thus automatically locked until reactuated. The space between the finger guides 18 and 20 is such that a small childs finger is not wide enough to move the locking ledges 30 and 32 out of operative engagement with the button actuator 34.

Actuation of the alternative embodiment of FIGS. 5 through 7 is similar. By inserting a finger between the finger guides 46 and 48, the locking ledges 50 and 52 are moved out of operative engagement with the button depressor 40, allowing the depressor 40 to engage the button actuator 34 and actuate the dispenser. Deactivation is similar to the basic embodiment except that as the operators finger is withdrawn, the locking ledges 50 and 52 engage the button depressor 40 to hold it out of operative engagement from the button actuator 34. To operate the alternate embodiment of FIGS. 8 and 9, the operator inserts a finger between finger guides 78 and 80. If the finger is larger than the predetermined size, the finger guides 78 and 80 will flex outwardly away from each other increasing the separator between finger guards 92 and 94 permitting the finger to pass therebetween to operate the button actuator 34. Upon removal of the finger, the finger guards 92, 94 and finger guides 78, 80 will return to the normal position.

As shown in FIG. 11, the lip extension 104 requires that the actuating finger exceeds a predetermined length in order to extend through the finger passage and engage the button actuator.

The operation of the embodiment of FIGS. 11 and 12 is identical to that of FIGS. 1 through 4. Insertion of a finger greater than a predetermined size into the finger passage 19 forces the finger guides 18 and 20 outwardly relative to each other moving the lock ledges 30 and 32 out of operative engagement with the button actuator 34 thereby permitting vertical movement of the button actuator 34 to dispense product from the dispenser. Upon withdrawal of thr finger from the finger passage 19, finger guides 18 and 20 and locking ledges 30 and 32 move inwardly to the normally locked position.

By this unique combination of structural elements, applicant invented a childprood safety adaptor which provides a maximum of safety. This is accomplished since the adaptor automatically returns to the locked position upon deactuation. This configuration is readily adaptable to existing overcaps and aerosol valves.

It will thus be seen that the objects of this invention, among those made apparent from the preceeding description, are efficiently attained, and since certain changes may be made in the above construction without departing from the scope of the invention, it is intended that all matter contained in the above description or shown in the accompanying drawings shall be interpreted as illustrative and not in a limiting sense.

Now that the invention has been described,

What is claimed is:

l. A childproof safety adaptor for an aerosol dispenser comprising control means adaptor to prevent actuation of the valve actuating means by a finger less than a predetermined dimension, said control means adaptor comprising a pair of spaced finger guides attached thereto by interconnecting means, each of said finger guides including a locking means arranged thereon to operatively engage the valve actuating means to prevent actuation of the dispenser when in the locked position, said finger guides being movable relative to each other to move said locking ledges out of operative engagement with said valve actuation means to permit vertical movement of said valve actuation means to actuate the dispenser.

2. The childproof safety adaptor of claim 1 wherein said pair of spaced finger guides are operatively attached to the valve actuation means, said locking means arranged relative to the valve actuator means and the mounting cup of the dispenser to prevent actuation of the dispenser when in the locked position, said finger guides being movable relative to each other by insertion of a finger therebetween to move said locking means out of operative engagement with the valve actuator means to permit vertical movement thereof to actuate the dispenser.

3. The childproof safety adaptor of claim 1 wherein said spaced finger guides form a finger passage therebetween, the width of said finger passage being dimensioned such that a finger of a predetermined width will separate said finger guides when inserted therebetween to disengage said locking means from said valve actuation means to permit vertical movement thereof relative to the dispenser.

4. The childproof safety adaptor of claim 1 wherein said resilient interconnecting means comprises a pair of resilient spring arms extending from said adaptor to each of said finger guides.

5. The childproof safety adaptor of claim 1 wherein said locking means comprises at least one locking ledge.

6. The childproof safety adaptor of claim 5 wherein said valve actuation means includes a button actuator which operatively engages said locking means when the dispenser is in the locked position.

7. The childproof safety adaptor of claim 6 wherein said button actuator includes at least one notch to operatively engage said locking ledge.

8. The childproof safety adaptor of claim 5 wherein said valve actuating means includes a button actuator and a button depressor held out of operative engagement with said button actuator by said locking ledge when the dispenser is in the locked position.

9. The childproof safety adaptor of claim 8 wherein said button depressor further includes at least one notch which operatively engages said locking ledge to hold said button depressor out of operative engagement with said button actuator when the dispenser is in the locked position.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2936189 *Feb 27, 1959May 10, 1960Peter BegelmanReceptacle safety latch means
US3554366 *Jan 13, 1969Jan 12, 1971James A CorllChild-safe actuating device for normally sealed containers
US3608785 *Dec 18, 1969Sep 28, 1971Durso August JAerosol container and closure cap unit therefor
US3651993 *Apr 13, 1970Mar 28, 1972Risdon Mfg CoAerosol dispensing cap with tamper-resistant actuator
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Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3904088 *Nov 12, 1973Sep 9, 1975Sr Benjamin K MilbourneSafety closure for an aerosol container
US3913805 *Feb 24, 1975Oct 21, 1975Sette James JOne-piece dispenser cap and childproof actuator
US4017009 *Jun 10, 1974Apr 12, 1977Seaquist Valve Company, Div. Of Pittway CorporationChild safety closure (Method III)
US4943695 *Jan 5, 1988Jul 24, 1990Gannett Co., Inc.Method of and apparatus for protecting a push button on a newspaper vending machine
US5503303 *Oct 14, 1994Apr 2, 1996S. C. Johnson & Son, Inc.Dual function self-pressurized aerosol actuator overcap
US7521642Feb 6, 2006Apr 21, 2009Toyota Motor Engineering & Manufacturing North America, Inc.Switch assembly for an automotive power window
US20070181414 *Feb 6, 2006Aug 9, 2007Belanger James LSwitch assembly for an automotive power window
DE4027672A1 *Aug 31, 1990Mar 5, 1992Pfeiffer Erich Gmbh & Co KgAustragvorrichtung fuer medien
EP0118202A2 *Feb 1, 1984Sep 12, 1984Imperial Chemical Industries PlcContainers
Classifications
U.S. Classification222/402.11, 221/152
International ClassificationB65D83/14
Cooperative ClassificationB65D2215/06