US 3868049 A
The tapping device includes a keg adapter semipermanently secured within a keg opening and having a reduced diameter central sleeve housing a fluid valve. A siphon tube is connected to the sleeve forming a fluid outlet passage therewith from the keg. A hex nut having a pair of fluid passages is threaded about the inner end of the sleeve in sealing relation about the keg opening and carries check valves in communication with the latter passages. An externally applied ring threads about the sleeve and this, together with the hex nut, clamps the sleeve within the keg opening with an annular passage defined between the sleeve and the keg wall opening in communication with the pair of passages. A plurality of openings are formed through the ring in communication with the annular passage.
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent [191 Johnston [111. 3,868,049 [451 Feb. 25, 1975 Related U.S. Application Data  Continuation of Ser. No. 83,675, Oct. 23, 1970, which is a continuation of Ser. No. 782,204, Dec. 9, 1968.
 U.S. Cl. ZZZ/400.7, 137/322  Int. Cl B65d 83/00  Field of Search 222/400.7; 137/212, 322
 References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,539,349 1/1951 Giles ZZZ/400.7
FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS 697,799 9/1953 Great Britain 222/400] 103,116 6/1898 Germany ZZZ/400.7
Primary Examiner-Robert B. Reeves Assistant Examiner-David A. Scherbel Attorney, Agent, or Firm--LeBlanc & Shur  ABSTRACT The tapping device includes a keg adapter semipermanently secured within a keg opening and having a reduced diameter central sleeve housing a fluid valve. A siphon tube is connected to the sleeve forming a fluid outlet passage therewith from the keg. A hex nut having a pair of fluid passages is threaded about the inner end of the sleeve in sealing relation about the keg opening and carries check valves in communication with the latter passages. An externally applied ring threads about the sleeve and this, together with the hex nut, clamps the sleeve within the keg opening with an annular passage defined between the sleeve and the keg wall opening in communication with the pair of passages. A plurality of openings are formed through the ring in communication with the annular passage.
7 Claims, 5 Drawing Figures PATENTEB 3.868.049
INVENTOR MACK S. JOHNSTON ATTORNEYS KEG TAPPING DEVICE This application is a continuation of copending application Ser. No. 83,675 filed Oct. 23,1970 for KEG TAPPING DEVICE, which application is, in turn, a continuation of copending application Ser. No. 782,204 filed Dec. 9, 1968.
Application Ser. No. 782,204, in turn, discloses a variation of and/or an improvement upon the beer tapping apparatus disclosed in copending application Ser. No. 773,406 filed Nov. 4, 1968 for KEG TAPPING DEVICE; application Ser. No. 773,406 discloses, in turn, a variation of and/or an improvement on the beer tapping apparatus disclosed in copending application Ser. No. 676,291 filed Oct. 18, 1967 for BEER TAP (now abandoned); application Ser. No. 676,291 discloses, in turn, a variation of and/or an improvement upon the beer tapping apparatus disclosed in copending application Ser. No. 611,610 filed Jan. 25, 1967 for BEER TAPPING DEVICE, now U.S. Pat. No. 3,410,458; application Ser. No. 611,610 discloses, in
turn, a variation of and/or an improvement upon the beer tapping apparatus disclosed in application Ser. No. 587,627 filed Oct. 18, 1966 for TAPPING DE- VICE FOR BEER KEGS AND THE LIKE (now U.S. Pat. No. 3,422,448); application Ser. No. 587,627 being, in turn, a continuation of application Ser. No. 406,682 (now abandoned) filed Oct. 27, 1964 for SI- PHON DEVICE FOR BEER KEGS AND THE LIKE; application Ser No. 406,682 discloses, in turn, a variation of and/or an improvement upon the beer tapping apparatus disclosed in application Ser. No. 395,080 (issued Jan. 25, 1966 as U.S. Pat. No. 3,231,154) filed Sep. 8, 1964 for SIPHON DEVICE FOR BEER KEGS AND THE LIKE; said application Ser. No. 395,084, being, in turn, a continuation of application Ser. No. 150,982 (now (abandoned) filed Nov. 8, 1961 for SI- PHON DEVICE FOR BEER KEGS AND THE LIKE.
The present invention relates to a new, improved tapping device for drawing fluid such as beer from containers, such as beer kegs, barrels or the like using a gas to drive the fluid from the container. In particularly, the invention relates to a new, improved tapping device usuable with conventional beer kegs, particularly those which are connected one to the other in series, and comprising a sub-unit, called a keg adapter which constantly seals the keg, and a sub-unit called a coupler" which is attached to the beer dispensing apparatus in a restaurant or tavern and/or another keg forming a portion of the serially connected kegs, the coupler being readily connected to the keg adapter so that the tapping device is automatically in operating condition.
Today, as in the past, the most widely pervailing practice in the beer industry is for a brewery to provide draft beer to retail outlets in conventional kegs which, for the most commonly used Peerless system have a 94 inch opening in the wall of the keg, the opening being closed with a bung in the form of a cork or a plug. To dispense the beer from the keg, the bartender taps the keg by knocking in or pushing in the bung and inserting an elongated tap rod with an associated siphon device for drawing the beer from the keg, these being fastened to the keg by means of a bayonet or like connection. This siphon device includes means for injecting compressed air or CO through the tap rod into the keg to drive the beer through the siphon and also external valve means for respectively controlling the flow of gas into the keg and beer from the keg. A
gas supply hose connects the siphon to a source of gas and another hose connects it to the beer dispensing apparatus mounted on the counter or bar in the restaurant or tavern, whereby beer may be dispensed from the keg. When the beer has been withdrawn from the keg to the extent feasible, the bartender then removes the tap and siphon device from the keg, removes the keg from the dispenser cabinet and installs a new keg and repeats the process of knocking in and pushing in the bung and installing the tap rod and related siphon equipment, etc.
The prevailing practice in tapping a beer keg which has been used for fifty years has a number of disadvantages for the brewery, the dispensing establishment and the public. These are set forth in more detail in my copending application Ser. No. 587,627 filed Oct. 18, 1966. Briefly, they include the fact that the kegs often become filled with insects, small animals, and debris of every sort, yeast and other solids from the beer inevitably accumulates with the resultant accumulation of destructive bacteria and further a substantial quantity of beer is often lost during the tapping process.
In my aforementioned copending application, Ser. No. 587,627 filed OCT. 18, 1966, I have disclosed a new, improved beer tapping device for dispensing beer or like liquids in kegs or barrels which overcomes the above discussed and other problems and shortcomings of the beer dispensing systems heretofore available and also provide a number of important advantages and improved results as hereinafter set forth. Particularly, the invention of that application provides a new improved means for packaging and dispensing beer and like liquids in kegs utilizing an adapter assembly installed and sealed in the keg at the brewery with an also improved coupler subassembly which is fastened to the keg adapter by the tavern keeper or bartender, thus automatically breaking the seal and readying the keg for dispensing of beer. Simple removal of the aforementioned coupler subassembly by the bartender causes the keg to automatically reseal, thereby positively preventing the entry of trash or other foreign objects. In addition, the beer is positively prevented from entering the gas passageway portion of the tapping device, thus preventing contamination or fouling of this portion of the device by dry residue, normally accumulating due to the surging of the beer.
In my copending application Ser. No. 676,291 filed Oct. 18, 1967, there is disclosed an improved tapping device including an adapter sub-unit having improved enlarged liquid and gas passage ways. This adapter includes a sleeve having a central liquid valve surrounded by a valve housing and an insert for receiving the valve actuating probe of the coupler sub-unit, the walls of the insert and the valve housing defining with the sleeve an improved enlarged gas passage particularly adequate for flow of beer therethrough when the tapping device is used in a series beer keg installation.
It is a primary object of the present invention to provide a further novel and improved beer tapping device including a novel, improved keg adapter subassembly and components for the same providing additional improvements in construction, mode of operation and result over prior beer tapping devices as set forth below.
It is another object of the present invention to provide a keg adapter having an improved enlarged gas passageway uniquely formed to provide an enlarged beer passage when the tapping device is utilized in a series beer keg installation and this without structurally weakening the keg adapter unit or enlarging the unit beyond the commercial size limitations imposed by the three-quarter inch standard keg opening of the Peerless system for both low and high pressure draft beer systems. To accomplish this, the keg adapter includes a sleeve housing a valve, the sleeve being of reduced diameter as compared to the internal diameter of the keg wall about the keg opening to define an annular passage therewith. An annular ring having an axially inwardly extending nipple threads internally about the sleeve and seals about the keg opening flange. The ring retains the keg adapter sleeve within the keg opening in cooperation with an internal nut threadedly received about the inner portion of the sleeve, the nut sealing against the inner marginal wall portion of the keg about the opening. A pair of passages are formed through the nut and communicate with a pair of depending flexible gas check valves. A plurality of openings are formed through the annular ring and these, together with the annular passage and the pair of passages in the nut, define an enlarged gas passage which, when the tapping device is employed in a series keg connection, provides an enlarged passageway for beer flowing into the keg from a preceding keg.
It is sill another object of the present invention to provide an improved keg adapter sub-unit which is readily assembled within the keg opening. This is achieved by forming the internal nut to a hex configuration whereby the sleeve may be inserted through the keg opening from without the keg and threaded about the hex nut. While the hex nut and sleeve are retained in the keg opening by a wrench or the like inserted through the opening in the side wall of the keg, the ring is threaded to the sleeve thereby clamping the sleeve within the keg wall opening. The manner of initially holding and retaining the hex nut and sleeve subassembly within the keg wall opening is similar to that set forth in my copending application Ser. No. 773,406, filed, Nov. 5, 1968 now abandoned.
It is a further object of the present invention to provide a new, improved keg adapter having improved and enlarged liguid and gas passageways uniquely formed to provide an enlarged gas passage adequate for the flow of beer therethrough when used in a seried beer keg connection and particularly for use in the larger one and one-half inch keg opening of the Golden Gate system, which opening is defined by an internally threaded outwardly extending flange and a radially inwardly extending shoulder. To this end, a substantially hemispherical member having a pair of gas passages therethrough communicating with depending flexible gas check valves is disposed about the shoulder of the opening. The member has a central internally threaded aperture which receives the sleeve of the keg adapter, which sleeve defines the outlet passage and houses the fluid valve. The sleeve and member are retained within the keg opening by a ring having an inwardly projecting nipple threading internally about the sleeve and having an externally threaded portion engaging about the internally threaded keg wall opening.
It is a still further object of the present invention to provide new, improved tapping assemblies including keg adapter sub-units having improved and enlarged gas passageways compatable with both the Peerless and Golden Gate type kegs and adapted for connection with identically constructed coupler sub-units for drawing the fluid from the kegs.
These and further objects and advantages of the present invention will become more apparent upon reference to the following specification, claims and appended drawing wherein:
FIG. 1 is a schematic view illustrating a plurality of kegs connected one to another in series and employing the new, improved tapping device of the present invention, the kegs having portions broken away for clarity of illustration;
FIG. 2 is an exploded view of the tapping device of the present invention, illustrating in cross-section the keg adapter sub-unit secured within the keg wall opening and the coupler sub-unit prior to connection with the keg adapter sub-unit, the coupler subassembly being shown in elevation with portions broken away and in cross-section;
FIG. 3 is a cross-sectional view of the keg adapter sub-unit taken generally about on line 3-3 of FIG. 2;
FIG. 4 is a cross-section view thereof taken generally about on line 4-4 in FIG. 2; and
FIG. 5 is a cross-section view of another embodiment of the keg adapter hereof particularly for use in the Golden Gate type system.
Referring now to FIG. 1, there is schematically illustrated three conventional beer kegs 10 having openings 12 through their upper walls 14 in which openings are received siphon devices constructed in accordance with the present invention and generally indicated at 16, the siphon devices including a dispenser coupler sub-unit A and a siphon keg adapter sub-unit B. Kegs 10 are connected one to the other in series with the inlet port 18a of the initial keg 10a being connected with a source of gas 20 under pressure via a gas supply tube 22. The outlet 19a of the tapping device of the initial keg 10a is connected to the inlet 18b of the next adjacent keg 10b via a conduit 24a while the outlet 19b of keg 10b is connected to the inlet 18 of the next adjacent keg. This type of connection is provided between additional kegs forming a plurality of serially connected kegs with the last serially connected keg being designated 10x. It will be appreciated that any number of kegs can be connected in series in this manner, that the three kegs illustrated are exemplary only and that the outlet 19x associated with the last of the serially connected kegs 10x is connected via a supply tube 24x to a suitable faucet indicated at 26. As hereinbelow set forth in greater detail, it will be seen that when the faucet 26 is open, the beer in the initial keg 10a will be transferred under pressure via its tapping device 16a to the next adjacent keg 10b while the beer in the keg 10b is transferred to its next adjacent keg, each keg transferring beer into its next adjacent keg with the last keg 10x in the series hookup transferring beer to the faucet 26. In this manner, the beer flows into and out of each of the kegs through the respective inlet and outlet passages of the siphon devices associated with the kegs, the initial keg 10a having only gas from pressure source 20 received through the inlet passage of its siphon device. It will be further appreciated that the inlet through the tapping device 16 in each of the kegs must be specifically adapted to accomodate the flow of both beer or gas under pressure, the present invention being specifically directed to a tapping device including a new and improved keg adapter to accomplish this purpose as will now be described.
Referring now to FIG. 2, there is illustrated the standard inch opening 12 of a Peerless type keg, the opening 12 being defined by a keg wall sleeve 27 terminating at its upper end in an outwardly directed flange 28, and adapted to receive the improved keg adapter B hereof. Keg adapter B includes a sleeve 30 having a cylindrical passage comprised of stepped bores 32, 34
and 36 defining annular shoulders 33 and 35 and terminating at its upper end in an internally threaded portion 38. The lower end portion of sleeve 30 about bore 32 is of slightly reduced diameter and is externally threaded as at 40. The lower end of sleeve 30 terminates in a nipple 42 about which the upper end of a siphon tube 44 (preferable formed of stainless steel).
Within the passage through sleeve 30, there is disposed a valve assembly 45 including an annular chuck washer 46 having stepped diametrical portions for sealing about bores 36 and 34 and against shoulder 35. The valve assembly 45 further includes a bifurcated valve 48 comprised of a plate 50 about the lower reduced diameter end of which is wrapped one end of a helical compression spring 52, the opposite and lower end of which bears against shoulder 33. Bifurcations 54 of valve 48 project upwardly through the central aperture in chuck washer 46 for engagement with the nose 56 of the probe P of the coupler sub-unit A as will presently be described. The valve is normally closed by spring 52 urging plate 50 against the underside of chuck washer 46. When the spring 52 is compressed by probe P as described hereinafter, the beer in the keg is free to flow under pressure into the siphon tube 44, through the sleeve 30, about plate 50, through the central aperture of chuck washer 46 and the area between the bifurcated arms 54 and into the probe. The valve assembly hereof may be of like construction as the valve assembly described and illustrated in my copending application Ser. No. 406,682, filed Oct. 27, 1964, the disclosure of which is incorporated herein by reference in its entirety.
As seen in FIG. 2, sleeve 30 has a reduced diameter as compared with the diameter of the opening 12 and defines an annular passage 58 with the keg opening sleeve 27. To maintain sleeve 30 within keg opening 12 with the sleeve centered therein, there is provided an outer annular ring 60 and an internal nut 62. Outer ring 60 is externally threaded as at 64 for receiving a collar on the coupler unit A as will be described. A central externally threaded nipple 66 defining a bore 67 is formed on ring 60 for threaded reception within the internally threaded portion 38 of sleeve 30 when the keg adapter is assembled in the keg opening, the nipple 66 forming the inner wall of an annular recess formed through the undersurface of ring 60 to receive the wall portion 27 about keg opening 12 and the upper threaded portion 38 of sleeve 30. The lower end of nipple 66, when the latter is threaded about sleeve 30, bears against the upper face of chuck washer 46 to retain the latter in sealing engagement against shoulder 35. A pluarlity of openings 65 are formed through the ring 60 for communication with annular passage 58. An O-ring seal 68 is provided about the under face of ring 60 outwardly of openings 65 for sealing engagement against the keg flange 28. An inwardly projecting annular flange 70 is provided about the underface of ring 60 of a diameter as to snugly engage about flange 28 and thereby preclude lateral shifting of sleeve 30 when in assembled relation in the keg opening.
Internal nut 62 has a threaded central aperture for threaded engagement about the threaded portion 40 of sleeve 30. An annular groove is formed about the central aperture of nut 62 and receives an O-ring seal 72 which, upon assembly of nut 62 and sleeve 30, seals against an external shoulder 73 formed about sleeve 30. A second O-ring seal 74 is provided about the upper face of nut 62 outwardly of openings 76 for scaling engagement against the marginal portions of keg wall 14 about opening 12 when the keg adapter B is sccured within keg opening 12 in a manner as will now be described. Internal nut 62 is preferably formed to a hex configuration to facilitate assembly of keg adapter B within the keg opening. Specifically, the sleeve and internal nut subassembly are inserted through the sidewall opening of the keg and manipulated by a tool insertable through the sidewall opening such that the upper portion of sleeve 30 is received within the keg opening. The tool for accomplishing this purpose may be of the type described and illustrated in my copending application Ser. No. 773,406, filed Nov. 5, 1968, now abandoned the disclosure of which is incorporated herein in its entirety by reference thereto. With the tool maintaining the sleeve and nut subassembly in position relative to the keg opening and against rotation, the nipple 66 of ring 60 is threaded within the threaded portion 38 of sleeve 30 drawing the latter upwardly within the keg opening until the nut 62 seals against the marginal keg wall portion within the keg about opening 12. A spanner wrench may be employed to fully tighten down ring 60. It will thus bee seen that the keg adapter sub-unit is maintained within the keg opening by the clamping action of the ring 60 and nut 62 against the flange 28 and the keg wall 14 respectively with the sleeve 30 being centered in opening 12 by flange on ring 60.
Internal nut 62 has a pair of openings 76 therethrough terminating at their lower ends in nipples 78 having D-shaped cross sections as seen in FIG. 4. Flexible gas check valves 80 are disposed about nipples 78and are preferably of the type described and illustrated in my copending application Ser. No. 676,291, filed Oct. 18, 1967, the disclosure of which is herein incorporated by reference in its entirety. Particularly, each gas check valve 80 comprises an elongated flexible tube preferably formed of silicone rubber having a D-shaped cross-section open at its upper end 82 which is adapted to slip over the nipple 78. The closed lower end 84 of each valve 80 is provided with a single elongated slit 86. Vertically extending elongated slits 88 and 89 are also formed in the curved vertical wall portion 90 and in the rear flat vertical wall portion 92 re spectively. These three slits permit gas or beer when the kegs lie in a series connection to pass under pressure through the check valve 80 into the interior of keg l0 and prevent backflow of either gas or beer into the valve 80. Three slits are provided in each valve 80 to optimize the size of the beer passage when the kegs lie in a series connection although one or two slits in each check valve could also be utilized with corresponding reduction in the size of the overall passage. An external band, not shown, may be provided about the upper ends 82 of valves 80 for securing the latter about nipples 78. A suitable glue may be applied about ends 82 to effect the seal between valve 80 and nipples 78. It will thus be seen that an inlet passage is provided through keg adapter B into the keg comprising the openings 65 formed through ring 60, the annular passage 58 between keg wall 12 and sleeve 30, the passages 76 through the internal nut 62 communicating within the check valves 80 and the slits 86, 88 and 92 in valves 80. Note that this passage is sealed interiorly of the keg by the O-ring seals 72 and 74 and exteriorly of the keg by the O-ring seal 68.
Referring to FIG. 2, coupler sub-unit A may be of the type described and illustrated in my copending application Ser. No. 406,682 filed Oct. 27, 1964. Briefly, coupler sub-unit comprises compruses a main cylindrical head portion 94 having a smooth internal central bore 96 and an internally threaded colar 98 for fastening the coupler to the keg adapter B as explained below. The inlet 18 comprises a tubular arm 100 having a central bore, not shown, arm 100 being adapted to receive an end of a piece of tubing, for example, the tubing 24 or 22 illustrated in FIG. '1, for respectively connecting coupler A to the preceding next adjacent keg when the kegs are connected in series or to the gas source 22 when the tapping device hereof is utilized when tapping a single keg or when tapping the first keg 100 of serially connected kegs. Coupler sub-unit A also includes a generally cylindrical hollow probe P positioned within the bore 96, the bore 104 of probe P forming an outlet passage 19 through coupler sub-unit A. Probe P is spaced from the walls of bore 96 and defines an annular passageway therewith in communication with the bore through arm 100. A pair of different diameter seals 106 and 108 are formed about the lower end of head 94 and probe P respectively for sealing engagement about the upper face of ring 60 outwardly of openings 65 and about the nipple 66 of ring 60. A seal 110 is formed about the nose portion 56 of probe P for sealing engagement within the passageway through nipple 66. The upper end of coupler body 94 is externally threaded as at 109 to receive a connection, not shown, communicating with a tube for transferring the beer from the keg through the keg adapter and coupler subunit A to the next keg of the serially connected kegs or to the faucet 26 from the last of the serially connected kegs.
Thus, to tap the keg, the bartender inserts the nose 56 of probe P within the bore 67 of nipple 66 and threads collar 98 about the externally threaded nut 60. By threading collar 98 about nut 60, the nose S6 bears against the bifurcated valve stem 54 and depresses valve plate 50 against the bias of spring 52 to open the fluid passage through the keg adapter sub-unit B. Suitable valves may be provided in the fluid outlet connected to coupler sub-unit A to preclude outflow of beer during the tapping process or the kegs may be tapped serially beginning with the keg adjacent the faucet 26, the faucet 26 acting as the valve precluding outflow of beer when valve 45 is opened. When the coupler sub-unit A is fully threaded down about keg adapter B, it will be seen that an inlet passageway is formed through arm 100, the annular passage defined by bore 96 and probe P, the openings 65 in external nut 60 and through the remainder of keg adapter sub-unit B as hereinbefore described. The fluid outlet passage through the keg adapter B thus directly communicates with the bore 104 through probe P which in turn communicates with the outlet conduit communicating with the faucet or the next adjacent serially connected keg. Thus when the kegs are serially connected, it will be seen that an enlarged gas/beer inlet passage is provided which is of substantially the same size as the fluid outlet passage through the valve in the keg adapter. The enlarged inlet passage thus does not restrict or inhibit the flow of beer into any one keg from one or more preceding serially connected kegs. Moreover, the enlarged inlet passage permits free flow of gas therethrough when the preceding serially connected kegs run dry or when the keg adapter is connected to the keg which communicates directly with the gas source 20.
The tapping device of the present invention may also be employed with the Golden Gate type system having a 1 /2 inch keg opening, which is illustrated in FIG. 5. The opening comprises an internally threaded upstanding flange about the opening 122 formed through the upper keg wall 124, the flange 120 and opening 122 defining a shoulder 126 about opening 122. The keg adapter unit B includes a substantially hemispherical number 128 having an annular flange 130, a central threaded aperture 132, and a pair of passageways 134 formed through member 128 and terminating along the underside of the latter in a pair of depending nipples 136. The threaded central aperture 132 is adapted to receive the threaded portion 44a of a sleeve 30a which is identical in construction to the sleeve 30 shown in the embodiment illustrated in FIGS. 24, further description of sleeve 3011 being unnecessary. An O-ring seal 72a, formed about sleeve 30a, seals against the outer concave face of member 128. Flexible check valves 80a are provided about the lower ends of nipples 136, valves 80a being identical to the valves 80 described in the previous embodiment.
To retain the member 128 within the keg opeinng, a ring 140 having an externally threaded portion 142 is adapted to be threadedly received about flange 120. Ring 140 has a reduced diameter externally threaded portion 144 adapted for threaded engagement with the collar 98 of the coupler unit A similarly as in the previous embodiment. Ring 140 also includes a depending externally threaded nipple 146 defining an outlet passageway or bore 148, the nipple being threadedly received about the internally threaded upper portion 38a of sleeve 30a. A plurality of openings 150 are provided about the upper face of ring 140 and open into an annular chamber 152 formed through the undersurface of ring 140. A sealing gasket 154 having a radially inwardly opening annular recess for receiving flange of member 128 is provided. As will be seen, when ring is threaded onto sleeve 30a, the latter being previously threaded through the aperture 132 of member 128, ring 140 also threads about the keg wall opening to clamp and seal gasket 154 against shoulder 126 thereby retaining member 128 in the illustrated position. The outlet passage through keg adapter B includes the bore 148 through nipple 146 as well as the valve assembly through sleeve 30a and siphon tube 42a as described in the previous embodiment. The gas/beer inlet passage includes the openings 150, the annular chamber 152 between the walls of ring 140 and sleeve 30a, the recess defined by the concave surface of the member 128, the passageway 134 and gas check valves 80a. To tap the keg, the probe P of the coupler sub-unit A is inserted within the bore 148 and the collar 98 is threaded about the externally threaded portion 144 of ring 140. When the collar 98 is fully threaded down on ring 140, the probe P opens the valve assembly 45, previously described thereby, providing communication between the interior of the keg through keg adapter B and coupler A to the conduits communicating with a faucet or the next adjacent serially connected keg. The annular passage between bore 196 and probe P of coupler A also lies in communication with the openings 150 through ring 140 thereby providing an enlarged beer/gas inlet passage communicating through the pair of check valves 80a. Note that the same coupler A as utilized in the previous embodiment with the keg adapter B employed in the Peerless type opening may also be employed with the keg adapter B, utilized in the Golden Gate type opening.
The present invention may be embodied in other specific forms without departing from the spirit or essential characteristics thereof. The present embodiments are therefore to be considered in all respects as illustrative and not restrictive, the scope of the invention being indicated by the appended claims rather than by the foregoing description, and all changes which come within the meaning and range of equivalency of the claims are therefore intended to be embraced therein.
What is claimed and desired to be secured by United States Letters Patent is:
1. A liquid dispensing apparatus comprising a keg, said keg having top, bottom and side walls with an opening in one wall, said one keg wall having an outwardly projecting substantially cylindrical portion about the keg opening, a keg adapter including a member receivable within the opening in the one keg wall and having a fluid outlet passage therethrough for the transfer of fluid from the inside to the outside of the keg, a normally closed valve in said fluid outlet passage, means for retaining said member within the keg wall opening, means comprising at least a portion of said member defining a fluid inlet passage through the keg opening for the transfer of fluid from the outside to the inside of the keg, a pair of discrete check vlaves, each of said check valves including a closed flexible envelope in communication with said inlet passage and having spaced side walls and an end wall with an elongated slit in at least one of said walls, said fluid inlet passage means including a part having a lateral dimension greater than the diameter of the keg opening and a pair of passageways through said part forming a portion of said fluid inlet passage, said check valves lying in communication with said passageways, and sealing means engaging between said part and a keg wall portion about the opening, said member comprising a reduced diameter sleeve, said fluid inlet passage including a substantially annular passage formed between said member and said cylindrical keg wall portion, said retaining means including a ring coupled to said member and having a plurality of openings in communication with said annular passage and a seal disposed between said ring outwardly of its associated openings and the cylindrical wall portion of said keg, said sealing means engaging between said part and an interior portion of said keg wall.
2. A liquid dispensing apparatus comprising a keg, said keg having top, bottom and side walls with an opening in one wall, said one keg wall including an inner shoulder and an outwardly extending internally threaded cylindrical sleeve about said keg opening, a keg adapter including a member receivable within the opening in the one keg wall and having a fluid outlet passage therethrough for the transfer of fluid from the inside to the outside of the keg, a normally closed valve in said fluid outlet passage, means for retaining said member within the keg wall opening, means comprising at least a portion of said member defining a fluid inlet passage through the keg opening for the transfer of fluid from the outside to the inside of the keg, a pair of discrete check valves, each of said check valves including a closed flexible envelope in communication with said inlet passage and having spaced side walls and an end wall with an elongated slit in at least one of said walls, said fluid inlet passage means including a part having a lateral dimension greater than the diameter of the keg opening and a pair of passageways through said part forming a portion of said inlet passage, said check valves lying in communication with said passageways, and sealing means engaging between said part and a keg wall portion about the opening, said part having a flange, a seal between said flange and the keg shoulder, said retaining means including an externally threaded ring coupled to said member and having a plurality of openings in communication with said fluid inlet passage, said ring being threadable about the internally threaded cylindrical sleeve for clamping said seal and flange against said shoulder.
3. A liquid dispensing apparatus for a keg having a top, bottom and side walls with an opening in one wall surrounded by a generally cylindrical integrally threaded keg neck and a coaxial reduced diameter annular flange comprising:
a keg adapter including a member receivable within the keg opening in the one keg wall and having a fluid outlet passage therethrough for the transfer of fluid from the inside to the outside of the keg, said member having a central axis with at least part of said fluid outlet passage lying generally coaxially therewith an being defined by a central tubular element, a siphon tube carried by said member and in part forming an extension of said fluid outlet passage from said keg, a normally closed valve in said fluid outlet passage including a valve seat about said tubular element and a movable valve element engageable against said seat to seal said fluid outlet passage, means releasably secured to said central tubular element for retaining said seat about said tubular element, said member having a gas inlet passage therethrough for the transfer of gas from outside to the inside of the keg and including in part an annular gas passageway portion, a valve in said gas inlet passage, means carried by said mem ber and interrupting a portion of ssid gas inlet passage to define a pair of discrete gas passageways in communication with said annular gas passageway portion, said discrete gas passageways lying radially offset from the axis of said member on diametrically opposite sides thereof, said keg adapter including means for securing said member in the keg opening including an externally threaded ring for threaded engagement with the internally threaded keg neck, said member having a radially outwardly directed flange of larger diameter than the annular flange carried by the keg, said ring being threadedly engageable with the threaded keg neck to clamp the larger diameter flange about said member between said ring and the keg flange thereby to retain said adapter in the keg, said adapter including an externally threaded portion located axially outwardly of the external threads carried by said a ring, a dispensing coupler for use with said adapter and including a head having inlet and outlet pas- 'sages, means for connecting said coupler head to said adapter with the inlet and outlet passages of said coupler unit in respective communication with the inlet and outlet passages of said adapter, said connecting means including an internally threaded collar rotatably carried by ssid coupler and threadedly engageable with said externally threaded portion carried by said adapter.
4. A liquid dispensing apparatus according to claim 3 in combination with said keg, said keg having top, bottom and side walls with an opening in one wall surrounded by a generally cylindrical internally threaded keg neck and a coaxial reduced diameter annular flange.
5. A liquid dispensing apparatus according to claim 3 including means carried by said member and said coupler cooperable, when said coupler is secured to said adapter, to form a seal therebetween to maintain the respective inlet and outlet passages through said coupler and said adapter sealed one from the other.
6. A liquid dispensing apparatus according to claim 3 including a seal about said member for sealing between said radially outwardly directed flange and the annular flange carried by the keg.
7. A liquid dispensing apparatus according to claim 3 including means carried by said member and said coupler cooperable, when said coupler is secured to said adapter, to form a seal therebetween to maintain the respective inlet and outlet passages through said coupler and said adapter sealed one from the other, said externally threaded portion carried by said adapter having a smaller diameter than the diameter of the externally threaded ring, said psir of discrete passageways being located axially inwardly of said annular gas passageway portion, a seal about said member for sealing between said radially outwardly directed flange and the annular flange carried by the keg.
Inventor(s) 3,868,049 Dated Feb. 25, 1975 Mack S Johnston It is certified that error appears in the aboveidentified patent and that said Letters Patent are hereby corrected as shown below:
. 1, line 36, "(now (abandoned) should read--(now abandoned)--.
6, line 31, "bee" should read--be--.
7, line 11, "sub-unit comprises compruses" should read --sub-unit A comprises-.
C01. C01. C01, C01. C01.
9, line 36, "vlaves" should read--valves--.
10, line 23, "having a top" should read--having top--. 10, line 34, "an being" should read--and being--.
10, line 48, "ssid" should read--said--.
11, line 6, "ssid" should read--said--. Signed and Scaled this Thirty-first D8) of August 1976 Arrest:
RUTH C. MASON Arresting Officer