Title:
MANUALLY PORTABLE DISPENSING DEVICE
United States Patent 3586210


Abstract:
A chip dispensing device which is manually portable for dispensing a chip at any location of a game board by depressing the distal end of the dispensing device against the surface of the game board and removing same. This invention comprises a tubular member, the distal end of said tubular member adapted to contain an axially movable, spring biased ring for actuating spring elements for retaining and releasing individual chips from a columnar stack, and the other end of said tubular member being removably fitted with a scoop funnel shaped for manual holding.



Inventors:
ANDAMASARIS JUDITH E
Application Number:
04/877309
Publication Date:
06/22/1971
Filing Date:
11/17/1969
Assignee:
JUDITH E. ANDAMASARIS
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
221/175, 221/251, 273/148R, 453/50
International Classes:
A63F3/06; A63F9/00; A63F11/00; (IPC1-7): B65G59/00
Field of Search:
221/290,251,175,291,298,190
View Patent Images:
US Patent References:
3191802Automatic nail dispenserJune 1965Lasting
3159308Article dispensing device comprising a pair of tubular membersDecember 1964Passavanti
2901146Golf tee dispenserAugust 1959Powell, Jr. et al.
2889961Dispensing deviceJune 1959Belmonte



Primary Examiner:
King, Lloyd L.
Assistant Examiner:
Culp Jr., Thomas C.
Claims:
I claim

1. A tube dispenser comprising:

2. The tube dispenser of claim 1 wherein said apertures in said tubular member, sleeve member and ring member are further characterized as being plural in number and spaced circumferentially therearound.

3. The dispenser of claim 1 wherein said sleeve member is further characterized as being radially constricted at one end thereof and having a plurality of inwardly projecting detents formed therearound, and said tubular member is further characterized as having a plurality of depressions circumferentially therearound for receiving therein said projecting detents of said sleeve member.

4. The dispenser of claim 1 wherein the distal ends of said tubular member and said sleeve member are further characterized by having inwardly facing buttonlike projections for spacing said ring member therebetween.

5. The tube dispenser of claim 1 wherein said ring member is further characterized as having a plurality of apertures longitudinally spaced from said first-mentioned apertures in said ring member through which said spring element straddles said ring member.

6. In a dispenser device having an open ended tubular body for introducing therein chip elements at one end thereof and dispensing said chip elements from the other end thereof, the combination of:

Description:
This invention relates to dispensing devices in general and more particularly to a manually portable dispenser for game chips and the like.

This invention has particular reference to handling chip elements used in playing games such as bingo and the like. In such games where chips are used, deposition of chips are made on the game board surface which is delineated by squares or other design configuration according to the rules of the games. In the game of bingo for example, a player's chance of winning is increased by playing several boards simultaneously. However, the number of boards a player is able to play is severely limited due to manual handling of the chips.

Accordingly, a principal object of this invention is to provide a chip dispensing device which is manually portable.

Another important object of this invention is to provide a dispensing device for chips which includes a simple but positive ejecting mechanism which is actuated by pressing down on the game board surface at the location selected.

Another object of this invention is to provide a chip dispensing device which is compact, quick and easy to manipulate and economical to manufacture.

Other objects and advantages of this invention will become apparent after a more careful study of the following detailed description taken together with the accompanied drawings wherein are illustrated and described a preferred embodiment of the present invention.

In the drawings,

FIG. 1 is a front elevation of the dispensing device of the present invention;

FIG. 2 is a side view of the funnel scoop attachment connected to the dispenser tube which is shown in fragment;

FIG. 3 is an enlarged cross-sectional view taken along lines 3-3 of FIG. 1;

FIGS. 4, 5 and 6 are greatly enlarged longitudinally sectioned views of the dispensing mechanism of this invention, in fragment, showing sequential operative stages and the resulting positions of the chips; and

FIG. 7 is an enlarged detail view of the spring element in section connecting the ring member which is shown in fragment.

Referring now to the drawings, reference numeral 10 designates in general the chip dispenser of the present invention. It comprises a tube 12 having a longitudinal slot 14 in the sidewall thereof which serves the purpose of allowing observation of the number of chips 16 remaining in the tube 12 and also as an access opening for straightening out chips which fall into the tube askew. The top end of tube 12 is slip fitted with scoop funnel attachment 18 which is formed with a generally flat front and back sides 20 and 22 respectively, and curved ends 24 which diverge outwardly from the slip-on collar coupling 26 to mouth 28. Mouth edge 30 of front side 20 is recessly spaced from mouth edge 32 of back side 22 to facilitate the scooping up of chips. As shown in FIGS. 3 to 6, the bottom end of tube 12 is provided with generally longitudinal slot apertures 34 spaced circumferentially therearound. The bottom end of tube 12 is further encircled with a sleeve member 36 which is concentrically spaced therearound. The distal ends or edges of tube 12 and sleeve member 36 generally coterminate. The top edge of sleeve member 36 is radially constricted as at 38 to form a slip fit necking encirclement around tube 12. Sleeve member 36 is retained in position on tube 12 by providing therein a plurality of holes 40 in which are snap fitted detents 42 formed in the necked portion 38 of sleeve member 36 to longitudinally and circumferentially lock sleeve member 36 in place on tube 12. Sleeve member 36 is also provided with a plurality of generally longitudinal slotted openings or apertures 34 in the lower end of tube 12. Ring member 46 is positioned for longitudinal movement in concentric space 48 between tube 12 and sleeve member 36. Ring member 46 is provided with a plurality of apertures 50 spaced therearound and located therein for radial alignment with slotted openings 34 and 44 in tube 12 and sleeve member 36 respectively. Another set of apertures 52 are provided in ring member 46 longitudinally spaced from and longitudinally aligned with apertures 50. Apertures 50 and apertures 34 in ring member 46 receive therethrough leg portions of leaf spring elements 54 which are shaped to support a column of chips 16 in tube 12 and allow the drop of the bottom chip when the dispensing mechanism of my invention is triggered or is pressed against the surface of the game board. As shown in FIG. 7, each of apertures 52 of ring member 46 is adjacent the top edge thereof and is connected with a slotted passageway 56 extending from said top edge to a side of apertures 52. This construction allows the easy insertion of spring element 54 into apertures 52 and 50 of ring member 46 without bending spring element 54 beyond its elastic limit. Coil spring 58 is positioned in concentric space 48 between tube 12 and sleeve member 36, one end thereof being seated against the necked portion 38 of sleeve member 36 and the other end thereof being seated against the top edge of ring member 46. Coil spring 58 functions to provide a spring bias against ring member 46 so that the bottom end of ring member 46 projects beyond the coterminous distal ends of tube 12 and sleeve member 36. Buttonlike projections 60 and 62 are formed at the distal ends of tube 12 and sleeve member 36 in face-to-face relation circumferentially spaced therearound to center the distal end of ring member 46 therebetween. The top portion of ring member 46 is centered between tube 12 and sleeve member 36 by the leg portions 64 and 66 of spring element 54 overlapping or astride over ring member 46 through aperture 52. A spring element 54 is provided for each set of radially aligned slots 44, 50 and 34. Each spring element 54 is generally shaped in the form of an inverted U with the legs 64 and 66 thereof closely spaced so as to receive the wall thickness of ring member 46 and thereby maintain the top end of ring member 46 centered in concentric space 48. The outside leg 64 of spring element 54 is substantially longer than inside leg 66 thereof. The extended portion of outside leg 64 is angled outwardly to form a shallow angle with the wall of ring member 46 and an obtuse angle with the inside wall of sleeve member 36 to provide wedging surfaces therebetween. Slotted openings 44 in sleeve member 36 are provided to receive therethrough the radially outward projecting angled portions of outside legs 64. The distal ends 68 of outside legs 64 of spring elements 54 are inwardly angled approximately 90° to extend through apertures 50 in ring member 46 and into slotted apertures 34 in the bottom end of tube 12 when in the state of elastic rest. The inside legs 66 of spring elements 54 are angled radially inwardly to extend through slotted apertures 34 in tube 12, the distal ends 70 thereof projecting inwardly into tube 12 sufficiently to support a column of chips 16 housed therein. The angle of distal ends 70 of inside legs 66 of spring elements 54 relative to the exterior wall of tube 12 is sufficiently obtuse to allow an easy wedging action therebetween.

In the operation of this invention which will be described relative to the game of bingo but may be equally applicable to other uses, my invention 10 may be used with or without the scoop funnel 18 attachment. However, the above-described scoop funnel 18 is preferred since this structure allows a manual grip on the funnel attachment to handle the dispensing device of my invention. This particular feature, that is, providing triangular shaped planular sides uniformly spaced apart allows a comfortable fit within the grasp of the user and as a consequence thereof permits easy handling without the necessity of removing the scoop attachment when the dispensing device is used as a dispenser, and thereby eliminates the operation of replacing the same when it is desired to scoop up the chips. With the scoop attachment 18 connected to tube 12, my invention may be used to collect game chips 16 for funneling into tube 12. As aforesaid, slotted opening 14 in tube 12 is available for observing the quantity of chips 16 remaining therein from time to time, and also for allowing straightening of the chips in the event they fall therein askew. This may easily be accomplished by the users fingernail or any other pin or sticklike object. FIG. 4 illustrates the longitudinal position of ring member 46 and bingo chips 16 in tube 12 and also the posture of spring element 54 while in nondispensing use. It will be noted that the column of chips 16 in tube 12 is supported by the inwardly angled end 70 of each spring element 54 while the outwardly angled outside leg 64 of each spring element 54 extends into slot aperture 44 of sleeve member 36. The inwardly right angled end 68 of outside leg 64 extends through aperture 50 in ring member 46 and into, but not substantially through, slotted aperture 34 of tube 12.

When it is desired to deposit a bingo chip on the game board, it is easily and quickly accomplished by placing the distal end of the tube dispenser 10 on the square of the number called. The tube dispenser 10 is depressed and removed to accomplish the depositing of a chip at that location. The action that takes place in the ejecting mechanism of my invention is illustrated in FIGS. 5 and 6. As the tube dispenser 10 of my invention is depressed until the coterminal distal ends of tube 12 and sleeve member 36 touch the game board surface, ring member 46 is being forced upwardly between tube 12 and sleeve member 36 against the bias of spring 58. This action causes the angled ends 68 and 70 of spring elements 54 to be wedged against ring member 46 by the relative sliding action of tube 12 and sleeve member 36 over the angled ends of spring element 54. Simultaneously with this action the column of chips 16 will be released from the hold of inward angled ends 70 of spring elements 54 and will drop by gravity to rest on the extended right angled end 68 of outside leg 64 of spring elements 54 which has now entered tube 12. When the tube dispenser 10 of my invention is raised from the game board, the bias of coil spring 58 acting on ring member 46 moves the ring member down relative to tube 12 and sleeve member 36. This action brings into alignment apertures 34 and 44 of tube 12 and sleeve member 36 with the angled portions of legs 66 and 64 respectively allowing resiliently characterized withdrawal of the extended right angled end 68 of outside leg 64 of spring element 54 from its chip hold position and simultaneously allows the inward movement of angled end 70 of inside leg 66 thereof to the chip hold position. Since the distal ends of the angled ends 68 and 70 of spring element 54 are vertically spaced, the simultaneous or near simultaneous release of angled ends 68 and holding engagement of angled ends 70 will act on adjacent chips as shown in FIG. 6. It is obvious that the vertical spacing between the distal ends of outside and inside legs 68 and 70; respectively, and the thickness of the chips to be used are relative or dependent functions which may easily be determined by one skilled in the art to which this invention pertains.

Though I use the expression tubular to define the body portion of my invention, I intend this expression to cover any similar hollow conduit which may be oval, square, triangular or any like polygonal section which may be adaptable to contain like shaped chips to be dispensed. It also follows that the expressions sleeve member and ring member are correspondingly shaped.

Though I have described and illustrated one preferred embodiment of my invention it is obvious that modifications may be made without departing from the principles thereof. Accordingly, what I intend to protect falls within the scope of the following claims.