|Publication number||US3822027 A|
|Publication date||Jul 2, 1974|
|Filing date||Jan 8, 1973|
|Priority date||Jan 8, 1973|
|Publication number||US 3822027 A, US 3822027A, US-A-3822027, US3822027 A, US3822027A|
|Original Assignee||Cherba S|
|Export Citation||BiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan|
|Patent Citations (8), Referenced by (17), Classifications (12)|
|External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet|
United States Patent [191 Cherba 1 3,822,027 [451 July 2,1974
[ CONTAINER WITH SAFETY CAP  Inventor: Samuel Cherba, 735 Totowa Rd.,
Totowa, NJ. 07512 22 Filed: Jan. 8, 1973 21 App]. No.: 321,830
 U.S. Cl. 215/9, 215/44, 215/46 R  Int. Cl. B676 9/00  Field of Search 215/9, 44, 46 R; 222/182  References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 3,182,843 5/1965 Foye 215/44 3,339,770 9/1967 Weigand 215/44 X 3,435,975 4/1969 Weigand 215/9 3,450,289 6/1969 Esposito, .lr. 215/9 3,451,576 6/1969 Lewis 215/44 X 3,655,100 4/1972 Markowitz 222/182 3,675,804 7/1972 Micalief 215/9 3,729,120 4/1973 Sette 222/182 X Primary Examiner-Stanley 1-1, Tollberg Assistant EJr drriiner Norman L. Stack, It. Attorney, Agent, or Firm-Alfred W. Vibber 5 7] ABSTRACT A container with a cap which cannot be readily removed by small children. The container neck and cap have cooperating interrupted thread-like formations which selectively retain them in fully telescoped, container-closed, position wherein turning of the cap does not further tighten or loosen it on the container neck; when'th'e cap is turned to a predetermined angular position relative to the container neck, shown by indicia on the container and cap, the cap can be pulled axially outwardly to a position in which turning of the parts relative to each other effects the unscrewing of the cap. The thread-like formation on at least one of the cap and container may besuch as to divide the cap unscrewing operation into stages, it being required that the cap be pulled axially outwardly between stages. The turning of the cap in successive stages may take place in the same direction, or it may take place in opposite directions.
. 11 Claims, 8 Drawing Figures PATENTEDJUL 2 I974 SHEEI 2 BF 2 1 CONTAINER WITH SAFETY CAP This invention relates to a container with a safety cap, that is, a cap which is not readily removable by small children. In certain of the disclosed preferred embodiments thereof, the combination consists of only two parts, that is, the container and the cap; it is to be understood, however, that, if desired, the cap-engaging portion or neck of the container may be made separate from the container proper.
The invention has among its objects the provision of an improved, simplified combination of container and safety closure device or cap therefor. The container may be made for tablets or the like such as aspirin, or, as shown in'one of the illustrative embodiments herein, the container may be an aerosol can and the cap may be a closure device which covers the aerosol-dispensing valve and its operating button.
The above and further objects and novel features of the invention will more fully appear from the following description when the same is read in connection with the accompanying drawings. It is to be expressly understood, however, that the drawings are for the purpose of illustration only, and are not intended as a definition of the limits of the invention.
In the drawings, wherein like reference characters refer to like parts throughout the several views:
FIG. I is a fragmentary view in elevation of a container-cap combination in accordance with the invention, the container being shown in full lines and the cap being shown in phantom lines, the thread-following lug on the skirt of the cap being shown in a first. lower closed position and in a second, upper lifted" position;
FIG. 2 is a fragmentary view in plan of the container per se, the view being'taken in a downward direction in FIG. 1;
FIG. 3 is a fragmentary view in vertical section through the container neck and a cap which is fully ap plied thereto, the section being taken along the broken section line 3-3 of FIG. 2;
FIG. 4 is a view in plan of the cap;
FIG. 5 is a view in vertical section through the cap, the section being taken along the broken section line 5-5 of FIG. 4;
FIG. 6 is a fragmentary view in elevation of a container having a second embodiment of cap-securing formation on its neck, a lug on the skirt of the cap, (the cap per se not being shown) being shown in phantom lines in successive positions which it assumes as the cap is being removed from the container;
FIG. 7 is a view in elevation of a container with a third embodiment of container neck, such neck having a further, third configuration of cap-retaining formation thereon, (the cap not being shown per se) a lug on the skirt of the cap being shown in successive positions which it assumes during the unscrewing of the cap; and
FIG. 8 is a view partially in elevation and partially in vertical section of an aerosol-dispensing container provided with an attachment having a neck portion and a cap mounted on such neck portion, there being interfitting cap'locking formations on the neck and the cap made in accordance with the embodiment of FIGS. l5, inclusive.
As will be apparent from the above, four embodiments of combinations of containers and caps or safety closure members of devices therefor in accordance with the invention are disclosed herein. The first such embodiment is shown in FIGS. 1-5, inclusive. The second embodiment is shown in FIG. 6, and the third embodiment is shown in FIG. 7. The fourth embodiment is shown in FIG. 8. In the first three disclosed embodiments, all of the closure devices are of two-piece construction, the neck of the container constituting one of the pieces. In the fourth embodiment, shown in FIG. 8, a member providing a neck is mounted upon an aerosol-dispensing container, a. dispensing valveprotecting cap being secured to the neck of such member by a locking means in accordance with the first embodiment herein disclosed.
Turning first to the embodiment of FIGS. 1-5, inclusive; the container 10 there fragmentarily shown may be, for example, a bottle which should be kept from children for containing aspirin or the like. Container 10 has a neck consisting of a lower part 11 upon which there are disposed two symmetrically opposite partial flanges 12 the opposite ends of which are separated by gaps 14. The purpose of such flanges will be explained hereinafter. Above the flanges 12 there is a circular cylindrical upper neck portion 15 and a larger diameter upper end portion 16 coaxial of portion 15. In the embodiment shown, the upper end portion 16 of the container neck has two cap-securing or locking formations disposed on opposite sides thereof, the outer peripheral surfaces of said two formations being of identical con figuration and spaced apart. As will become apparent hereinafter, each of said two locking configurations on part 16 of the neck cooperates with a respective lug or land on the inner surface of the skirt of the cap. It will be understood that, in accordance with the invention any number of locking formation angularly spaced about the neck of the container may be employed, such formations cooperating with an equal number of angularly spaced lugs on the inner surface of the skirt of the cap.
The upper end portion 16 of the container neck is joined to the lower smaller diametered portion 15 thereof by a transverse shoulder 19. The portion 16 has an upper end surface 20 in the form of an annulus parallel to the shoulder 19. Each of the opposite threadlike locking formations on the portion 16 of the neck includes an angular, parallel-sided slot 23, the slot 23 having a lower ramp surface 17 and an upper ramp surface 21. The ramp surfaces 17 and 21 terminate at short axially directed surfaces 24 and 22, respectively, the surfaces 22, 24 being circumferentially spaced as shown.
The safety closure member in the form of a cap applied to the above-described neck of the container is designated 29. Cap 29 has a transverse disc-like top 30 from the outer edge of which there depends an,outer, generally circular cylindrical skirt 31 and from an intermediate portion of which there depends an inner skirt 32, the two skirts and the top 30 of the cap being coaxial. In the embodiment shown, the inner skirt 32 is parttoroidal in axial section so as to form a seal at its midpoint with the inner surface 34 of the neck portion 15 when the, cap is applied as shown in FIG. 3. The inner surface of the top 30 of the cap intermediate the two skirts and overlying the annular upper surface 20 of the container neck is formed with an annular sealing ring as shown in FIG. 3 whereby to provide an additional seal between the container neck and the cap when the cap is fully tightened upon the neck.
Disposed diametrically oppositely on the inner surface of the outer skirt 31 of the cap are two identical lugs 35 which in the embodiment shown are in the form of rhomboids. Lugs 35 form rudimentary threads or thread followers which cooperate with the abovedescribed locking formations in a manner now to be described.
As shown most clearly in FIG. 5, each lug 35 has axially spaced parallel upper and lower surfaces 36 and 37 which are disposed transverse to the axis of the cap and spaced parallel inclined surfaces 39 and 40, surfaces 36 and 39 meeting at a blunt axially extending zone 41 and surfaces 37 and 40 extending in a blunt short axially extending zone 42. As is apparent in FIG. 1, the surfaces 39, 40 of the lugs are disposed at an angle with respect to the axis of the cap and of the container which is equal to the angle of inclination of the cuts or channels 23 in the portion 16 of the neck of the container. The lower outer edge of the outer skirt of the cap has two identical oppositely disposed radially outwardly extending flanges 44 (FIG. 4) which in the embodiment shown subtend angles which are equal to the angles subtended by the gaps 14 between the partial flanges 12 on the neck of the container. The members 44 cooperate with the part flanges 12 in a manner to be described to aid in the selective locking and unlocking of the cap on the container neck.
With the cap fully applied to the container neck as shown in FIG. 3, and with the lugs 35 thereof lying in their lower axial position and beneath the shoulder 19 (FIG. 1), the cap 29 cannot be removed from the container by purely rotational movement in either direction with respect thereto. Also, unless the cap is turned to one of two angular positions, indicated by the angular coincidence of the flange members 44 on the cap with the gaps 14 between the part flanges on the container neck, the cap cannot be pulled axially outwardly on the container neck except by a force which is greater than that which a small child could exert. When the members 44 are aligned with the gaps 14, however, the lugs 35 occupy the left-hand position (FIG. 1) with respect to the channels 23 and so the cap may then be pulled axially upwardly until the upper surfaces 36 of the lugs 35 engage the upper ramp surfaces 21 of the channels 23. Thereafter, rotation of the cap in a counterclockwise direction causes the lugs 35 to ride upwardly in the channels 23, thus permitting the cap to be unscrewed from the container.
The cap 29 may be made of a variety of suitable materials which may be either substantially rigid, when the neck of the container is made of flexible, resilient material, or is somewhat flexible in character. When one or both of the cap and container neck are made of resilient material such as a distortable plastic, the cap may be applied to and removed from the container neck by purely axial movement with respect thereto. As above-described, however, the force required for such operation preferably exceeds that force of which a small child is capable, so that the cap and container combination still preserve their valuable safety features.
In the second embodiment of the invention, shown in FIG. 6, parts which are similar to those in the embodiment of FIGS. 1-5, inclusive, are designated by the same reference characters with an added prime The locking formations in FIG. 6 differ from those of the first-described embodiment by having the lower ramp surface 17 of the channel 23' provided with an intermediate portion 45 disposed transversely to the axis of the container neck, there being a further inclined portion 46 joined to the right-hand end of the surface 45 (FIG. 6), surface 46 being parallel to the main surface 17. At the upper, right-hand end of the surface 46 there is disposed an axially extending stop surface 47, the upper end of which is joined to the lower end of the inclined surface 17.
When the lugs 35' on the cap lie beneath the shoulder 19, as in the first-described embodiment, the cap cannot normally be removed by purely axial movement with respect to the container neck. When the part flanges (not shown) on the cap (likewise not shown in FIG. 6) angularly coincide with the gaps 14 in the part flanges 12' in the container neck, the cap may be pulled axially outwardly on the container neck so that the lugs 35' thereof engage the upper surfaces 21' of the respective angular channels 23 on the container neck. Thereafter, counterclockwise rotation of the cap will bring the lugs 35 first into engagement with the surfaces 45, 46 as shown at the right in FIG. 6, and flnally so that the leading ends of the lugs 35' engage the stop surfaces 47. Rotation of the cap in an unscrewing direction is thus stopped, such restraint being positive enough so that it cannot be overcome by a small child. The only way in which the screwing of the cap can normally be continued is to raise the cap sufficiently in the channel 23', which is made wide enough to permit it, for the forward ends of the lugs 35' to clear the upper left-hand edges of the stop surfaces 47. When this is done, unscrewing of the cap can be continued and the cap thus removed.
In the embodiment of FIG. 7, parts which are the same as those in the first-described embodiment of FIGS. 1-5, inclusive, are designated by the same reference characters with added double primes In this embodiment, the neck portion 16 is made appreciably axially longer than that in the first embodiment, the locking formations in neck portion 16" including a first, lower channel 52 inclined upwardly to the right (FIG. 7), channel 52 ending at the right in a switching portion 53. From portion 53 there extends a further reversely inclined channel 54. The portion of the locking formation at the left has a lower ramp surface 49, a short axially extending surface 51, and a reversely inclined upper ramp surface 50. The locking formation at the right has a blunt left-hand edge 55, an inclined ramp portion 56, a transverse portion 57, and an axially extending stop surface 59 which forms the right-hand boundary of the switching portion 53 of the channel. The channel 54 has an upper ramp portion 60 which is parallel to the ramp 50.
The first portion of the cap-removing operation with the embodiment of FIG. 7 resembles that of FIG. 6: The cap is turned so as to place the lugs 35" thereon in position to be entered into the channels 52 when the cap is pulled axially of the container neck. After this has been done, and the cap has been turned counterclockwise, the lugs enter the channel 52 and eventually engage the stop surface 59. In order to resume the unscrewing of the cap, it is now necessary to pull the cap further outward axially and then to turn it in the other, clockwise direction, so that the lugs 35" then travel upwardly and axially outwardly along the channel 54.
This embodiment of container neck-cap combination requires more ingenuity and dexterity on the part of the would-be operator than either of the first two described embodiments. FIG. 8 illustrates the application of the container neck-safety cap combination of the invention to an aerosol dispenser can. The aerosol container, generally designated 61, has a side wall 62 to the upper end of which there is attached and sealed by a flange 65 an inverted cup member 64 which carries the dispensing valve 68 of the container. Valve 68 is mounted in a shallow cup member 67 which is secured by an upper flange 66 to the upper end of the member 64. The contents of the container are dispensed under pressure when the valve 68 is depressed by a push-button 69.
An outer inverted cup member 70, which may have a shape generally similar to member 64, is applied thereover and snapped downwardly therepast so that the upper edge 71 of the member 70 snaps beneath the lower edge 72 of the flange 66, thereby securely maintaining the member 70 in place. Member 70 may be made of a somewhat flexible, resilient plastic material.
Member 70 at its lower edge has an upwardly bent annular neck-like formation 74 which functions similarly to the upper portion of the neck of the container in the first three described embodiments herein. An inverted cup-like cover 75 is provided, the cover or cap 75 and the member 74 having cooperating locking formations generally designated 76, which may be similar to those described in connection with FIGS. 1-5 herein and which will function in the same manner. Such locking formations 76 will permit an adult readily to remove the cap 75 when required and thus to operate the valve 68, but will prevent its ready removal by a small child. This is especially important with an aerosol container, where the very act of dispensing the contents by gas pressure intrigues a child, who wishes to operate the valve himself to see how it works.
Although only a limited number of embodiments of the invention have been illustrated herein, it is to be especially understood that various changes, such as in the relative dimensions of theparts, materials used, and the like, as well as the suggested manner of use of the apparatus of the invention, may be made therein without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention as will now be apparent to those skilled in the art.
What is claimed is:
1. In the combination of a container and a safety closure member rotatable on the container and adapted selectively to be locked thereon from ready removal therefrom. the improvement which comprises two parts, the first such part being a neck on the container, the neck having an axially directed peripheral surface, the neck having an axially directed dispensing passage therethrough, the second of said parts being the closure member, the closure member being a cap having an axially directed skirt adapted to be telescoped over the neck of the container and a transverse top disposed across the outer end of the skirt and spanning the outer end of the neck and closing the dispensing passage therein when the cap is applied thereto, the cap and neck having interacting cap-locking formations on their axially directed peripheral surfaces, one of said formations including a transverse annular flange having an annular end surface which is disposed axially inwardly of the neck when the cap is fully applied to the neck, said end surface of the flange lying in a transverse plane disposed at with respect to the common axis of the assembled cap and container neck, said flange having an at least part-helical groove extendingradially inwardly from the peripheral surface of said flange and through the flange from its axially inner annular surface to the axially outer surface thereof, the other of said interacting cap-locking formations including a land adapted to be received in said groove, the land lying axially inwardly of and contiguous to the axially inwardly disposed end surface of the flange and the cap being freely rotatable with respect to the container neck when the cap is fully applied to the neck, the land being able to enter the groove only when the cap is turned to a predetermined angular position relative to the neck, the land then entering the groove upon pulling the cap axially outwardly along the neck, the cap then being removable from the neck by the turning of the cap relative to the neck so that the land travels axially outwardly along the helical groove.
2. The combination according to claim 1, comprising cooperating indicia on the cap and container neck for displaying their relative disposition when they are in said predetermined angular position relative to each other.
3. The combination according to claim 2, wherein the indicium on one of the parts of the container neckcap combination is a second, outer annular flange hav ing a gap in its periphery, and the indicium on the other part of said combination is a part-circular third flange disposed adjacent the flange which subtends an angle at least approximating that subtended by the second flange, the said gap in thesecond flange and the third flange being so disposed that when they are aligned said cap is disposed at said predetermined angle relative to said neck.
4. The combination according "to claim 1, wherein the land is of rhomboidal shape and has two opposite first sides disposed in a plane transverse to the axis of the neck and cap, the groove has parallel opposite side walls, the, remaining two opposite sidewalls of the land being disposed parallel to the opposite sidewalls of the groove.
5. The combination according to claim 1, wherein the said one of the interacting cap-locking formations which includes a transverse annular flange is disposed on the container neck, the said other of said interacting cap-locking formations which includes a land is disposed on the inner surface of the skirt of thecap.
6. The combination according to claim 1, wherein the flange has an axially outwardly disposed annular end surface and the groove is helical throughout its length and extends directly from one transverse annular surface of the flange to the other.
7. The combination according to claim 1, wherein the groove has at least a first and a second successive at least generally helical portions joined by a dwell zone interposed therebetween, wherein the land moves in a transverse plane when the cap is rotated relative to the container neck, and an at least generally axially extending stop surface disposed beyond the dwell zone so that the leading axially outer end of the land substantially engages the stop surface when the land lies in the dwell zone, the groove in the dwell zone having an increased axial width whereby an axially outward pulling of the cap along the neck when the land is in said dwell zone causes the land totravel axially along the stop surface and to be ready for entry in the second helical portion of the groove upon further turning of the cap in an unscrewing direction.
8. The combination according to claim 7 wherein the successive helical portions of the groove are generally aligned and have substantially the same helix angle, whereby the cap is unscrewed in the same direction throughout its removal from the container neck.
9. The combination according to claim 7, wherein the successive helical portions of the groove extend at opposite helix angles, whereby the cap is turned in re verse directions during its removal as the land travels from one helical groove portion to the subsequent helical groove portion.
interlocking with said neck.
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|U.S. Classification||215/206, 215/220|
|International Classification||B65D50/00, B65D41/04, B65D50/06, B65D83/14|
|Cooperative Classification||B65D83/40, B65D50/061, B65D41/0421|
|European Classification||B65D83/40, B65D41/04B1A, B65D50/06B|