Title:
FOAM DISPENSER
United States Patent 3633795


Abstract:
Dispenser apparatus for multicomponent products comprises a pair of dispensing valves and a manually graspable support bracket. A valve-supporting assembly, mounted on the bracket and substantially defining the posterior portion of the apparatus, attaches the valves to the bracket and includes a pair of rearwardly extending tubular inlet members for connection to a remotely located product supply container. The apparatus further includes a dispensing nozzle unit spaced apart from the dispensing valves, and tubing connecting each of the dispensing valves with the latter unit. A linkable plate connects a manual trigger to each of the dispensing valves for actuation of the valves in unison.



Inventors:
BROOKS WILLIAM R
Application Number:
04/885445
Publication Date:
01/11/1972
Filing Date:
12/16/1969
Assignee:
INSTA-FOAM PRODUCTS INC.
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
222/135, 222/402.22, 222/529, 239/304, 239/414, 239/432, 239/527
International Classes:
B05B7/12; B29B7/74; (IPC1-7): B05B11/00
Field of Search:
222/135,134,529,323,402
View Patent Images:
US Patent References:
3318492Pressure dispenser attachment1967-05-09Haas
3303970Device for simultaneously dispensing from plural sources1967-02-14Breslau
2991015Component mixture delivery gun1961-07-04Standuck
2890836Apparatus for applying a mixture of a plurality of liquids1959-06-16Gusmer
1686004Spraying device1928-10-02Hottinger
1216146N/A1917-02-13Lissauer
1094761N/A1914-04-28Thousand



Foreign References:
DE837170C1952-04-21
Primary Examiner:
Reeves, Robert B.
Assistant Examiner:
Handren, Frederick R.
Claims:
1. Dispenser apparatus comprising: manually graspable bracket means; first and second dispensing valve means, each including a tiltable valve element; a valve-supporting assembly attaching said dispensing valve means to said bracket means and including a first pair of tubular connector means adapted for cooperating in establishing a fluid pathway between said dispensing valve means and remote supply container means, said valve-supporting assembly being mounted on said bracket means in braced, fixed position; mixing and dispensing nozzle means spaced apart from said dispensing valve means and including a second pair of tubular connector means; tubing means cooperating in joining said second pair of tubular connector means with said dispensing valve means; manual trigger means; and fixture means rigidly interconnecting said valve elements for actuation thereof in unison and including mounting site means for said trigger means whereby retraction of said trigger means tiltably actuates said dispensing valve means.

2. Dispenser apparatus according to claim 1 wherein said bracket means includes a generally forwardly extending tongue element, said tongue element substantially underlying said nozzle means and supporting said nozzle means when said nozzle means is substantially vertically displaced from a resting position to a depressed operating position.

3. Dispenser apparatus according to claim 1 and which further includes jacket fittings, each of said jacket fittings respectively telescoped about one of said valve elements.

4. Dispenser apparatus according to claim 3 wherein each of said tiltable valve elements has an externally threaded anterior portion and wherein each of said jacket fittings has an internally threaded posterior portion, whereby to facilitate engagement of each of said posterior portions respectively about one of said anterior portions.

5. Dispenser apparatus according to claim 1 wherein said mixing and dispensing nozzle means includes a tubular housing portion; outlet cap means located at the anterior terminus of said housing portion; and a static mixing element located substantially within said housing portion.

Description:
This invention relates generally to apparatus for dispensing multicomponent products and more particularly to portable, reusable apparatus for delivering large quantities of such products.

Although portable dispensers for multicomponent products, such as urethane foams, have been heretofore employed, such devices display several undesirable characteristics. Chief among these is the necessity for discarding the device once initial use of it has been completed notwithstanding the fact that a substantial portion of the product may yet remain. Even in those devices which are not subject to this specific limitation, a disadvantage often resides in the necessity for replacement of substantial portions of the device, thereby making subsequent use expensive. Furthermore, an additional disadvantage of many portable apparatus of this type is their inability to dispense large quantities of the product, an obvious handicap when large jobs, such as wall or panel insulation, are contemplated. Additionally, many portable dispensers on the market today generally require two-handed control for effective precision guidance of the device whenever it becomes necessary to dispense the product in a somewhat restricted and confining area.

Therefore, a general object of the present invention is to provide a new and improved portable apparatus for dispensing multicomponent products.

An important object of the invention is to provide a portable dispenser apparatus capable of delivering large quantities of a multicomponent product.

Another object of the invention is to provide a portable dispenser apparatus capable of effectively controlled one-hand operation for precise distribution of the product into relatively inaccessible and confining target areas.

Yet another object of the instant invention is to provide a portable dispenser apparatus capable of reutilization.

Still another object of the present invention is to provide a portable dispenser apparatus which requires few and relatively inexpensive replacement parts when reuse is desired.

These and other objects and features of the invention will become more apparent from a consideration of the following descriptions.

In order that the principles of the invention may be readily understood, a single embodiment thereof, applied to the dispensing and distributing of urethane foam products but to which the application is not to be restricted, is shown in the accompanying drawings wherein:

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of an actuated portable dispenser apparatus in accord with the invention, shown connected, by lengths of tubing, to a product supply container enclosing a pair of pressurized vessels (illustrated in broken outline) charged with the respective component reactants of the product, and shown used in a one-hand operation for insulating a wall;

FIG. 2 is an enlarged perspective view of the portable dispenser apparatus of FIG. 1;

FIG. 3 is a further enlarged perspective view of a linkage plate, removed from the dispenser apparatus of FIG. 2, showing the upper portion of the manual trigger connected therewith;

FIG. 4 is a further enlarged, central sectional view taken substantially along the line 4--4 of FIG. 2 and showing, in side elevation, the portable dispenser apparatus, manual control thereof being exercised as suggested in broken outline;

FIG. 5 is an enlarged, sectional view taken substantially along the line 5--5 of FIG. 2 to show the construction of the dispensing valve;

FIG. 6 is an enlarged, fragmentary, sectional view similar to a portion of FIG. 5 but illustrating a dispensing valve which has been tiltably actuated; and

FIG. 7 is an enlarged, central sectional view taken substantially along the line 7--7 of FIG. 2 to show the construction of the dispensing nozzle.

Referring now in detail to the drawings, specifically to FIG. 2, a portable dispenser apparatus constructed in compliance with the instant invention and designated generally by the reference character 10 comprises a manually graspable support bracket 12, a pair of dispensing valves 14, a valve-supporting assembly 16 and a dispensing nozzle 18. The valve-supporting assembly 16 attaches the dispensing valves 14 to the bracket 12 and includes a housing portion 20 and a pair of rearwardly extending threaded tubular connector inlet members 22 adapted for threaded engagement with respective lengths of tubing 24. As will be described more fully hereinafter, one of the lengths of tubing 24 may be connected, as indicated in FIG. 1, to a pressurized vessel 27 and the other to a pressurized vessel 29, each vessel containing one of the basic reactants of the multicomponent product to be discharged through the aperture 120 of the dispensing nozzle 18 (FIG. 2). The housing portion 20 further includes a pair of substantially cylindrical valve-receiving bodies 26 for retaining the dispensing valves 14 in fixed, spaced relation, the valve-receiving bodies 26 being joined rearwardly therebetween by a narrow integral web 40 (FIG. 4), the upper and lower surfaces 46 and 48 thereof having concavity in the transverse plane. The web 40 terminates downwardly in a vertical wall 42 (FIG. 4) and upwardly in a vertical wall 44, the vertical walls 42 and 44, in turn, extending forwardly and laterally to provide a circumferential collar 30 surrounding the anterior portions of the valve-receiving bodies 26. The collar 30, the vertical walls 42 and 44 and the most forward portion of the web 40 cooperate to provide the base portion 32 of a substantially flattened, forwardly extending, frustoconically tapered projection 34 positioned intermediate the bodies 26.

Turning to a consideration of FIG. 4 and continuing with secondary reference to FIG. 2, an anterior rod element 36 of the handle portion 38 of the bracket 12 extends generally upwardly to perforate the upper and lower surfaces 46 and 48 of the web 40 for sealed securement therewith. A substantially horizontally disposed lower rod element 37 connects the rod element 36 and a posterior rod element 50 extending generally upwardly and behind the valve-supporting assembly 16, the rod element 50 residing intermediate the valve-receiving bodies 26. A substantially horizontally disposed upper rod element 52 perforates the vertical wall 44 and the upper portion of the projection 34 whereby to connect the posterior rod element 50 and a generally forwardly extending tongue element 54 adapted for support of the nozzle 18 when the latter is vertically displaced during tiltable actuation of the dispensing valves 14 by manual depression of a trigger 56 operably connected with the valves 14.

Turning to a consideration of FIG. 3 and continuing with reference to FIG. 2, a substantially flat plate 58, secured with respect to the dispensing valves 14 links the trigger 56 and the valves 14 whereby to ensure actuation of the valves 14 in unison when the trigger 56 is depressed. The trigger 56 is comprised of a pair of upwardly extending, parallel rod elements 60 which extend forwardly at the lowest portion thereof to be joined by a bight portion 62 integral therewith. The forwardly extending portion 64 provides a cushion for the hand when the fingers are wrapped about the trigger 56 (FIG. 4). The upper portion 66 of each rod element 60 extends rearwardly and perforates the plate 58, the trigger 56 being secured with respect to the plate 58 by a tang or flared portion 68 of each rod element 60 engaging the rearwardly facing surface of the plate 58 (FIG. 3). The plate 58 is provided with two holes 70 adapted for fitted assembly about the gasket or jacket portions 72 of the dispensing valves 14, the centers of the holes 70 being spaced one from the other a distance equal to the distance between the valves 14. The gasket portion 72 of each valve 14 is provided anteriorly with a circumferential flange 74 (FIG. 5) integral therewith, the flange 74 defining the posterior limit for the placement of the plate 58 relative to the gasket portions 72. As will be described more fully hereinafter, the gasket portion 72 of each of the dispensing valves 16 terminates anteriorly in a stem 78 (FIG. 5). A length of tubing 76 telescopes about each stem 78 and about a corresponding tubular connector member 80 (FIG. 7) extending rearwardly from the dispensing nozzle 18 whereby to connect the dispensing valves 14 and the dispensing nozzle 18.

With reference to FIG. 1, the reactant-containing vessels 27 and 29 are enclosed by a product supply container 33 having a conveniently disposed handle portion thereon whereby to facilitate transportation of the unreacted ingredients of the multicomponent product to be discharged. Two pressure vessels are employed with respect to the apparatus 10; because the product to be dispensed, for purposes of the illustrative embodiment, is a reacting urethane foam which is generally comprised of two basic reactants, to wit: an isocyanate resin and a polyester or polyether polyol which serves as a suitable source of reactable hydroxyl sites. The isocyanate component, for example, may be charged into vessel 27 together with a suitable quantity of a propellant gas. Companion vessel 29 may be charged with the other component, together with a suitable catalyst material and with a mixture comprising a propellant gas and a frothing or foaming agent. To ensure that stoichiometrically suitable volumes of the reactants will be released from the two vessels when the dispensing valves 14 are tiltably actuated, the propellant is charged into each of the vessels 27 and 29 to a correspondingly suitable vapor pressure.

As is illustrated in FIG. 1, the tubing portions 24 connecting the pressurized vessels 27 and 29 and the dispensing valves 14 are of considerably greater length than are the tubing portions 76 connecting the dispensing valves 14 and the dispensing nozzle 18. Inasmuch as the flexibility of tubing is related to its length, then, as will be appreciated, the relatively great length of the tubing portions 24 permits of an enhanced maneuverability of the dispenser apparatus 10 heretofore not realized in prior portable dispenser apparatus having its reactant-containing vessels secured with respect to the dispenser apparatus proper. As will be readily appreciated, the volume of product to be dispensed will necessarily vary according to the demands of a particular situation. Because the reactant-containing vessels are not fixed with respect to the instant dispenser apparatus 10, vessels, capable of delivering from 10 cubic feet to 50 cubic feet of urethane foam, may be selected according to the requirements of a particular job. This most certainly is not the case when a prior portable dispenser apparatus, of the type discussed hereinabove, is employed. Such apparatus requires relatively small pressurized vessels mounted with respect thereto, lest the portability feature otherwise be destroyed. Additionally, one may prefer to use the instant dispenser apparatus 10 together with vessels containing large quantities of the basic reactants for a variety of different applications. The instant dispenser apparatus 10, having its reactant-containing vessels positioned apart therefrom, is capable of delivering as much as 130 times the volume of product deliverable by the prior portable dispenser apparatus of the aforementioned type. This, of course, promotes economy of usage inasmuch as the vessels themselves do not have to be replaced nearly so often as otherwise would be the case were the prior apparatus to be employed. Furthermore, the prior apparatus of the type hereinabove discussed generally has its reactant-containing vessels closed with a foam-type aerosol valve, tubing of relatively moderate length being used to connect the valve and the dispensing nozzle thereof. Thus, in a prior portable dispenser apparatus having its reactant-containing vessels secured with respect to the apparatus proper, the valves of the vessels are opened to permit the basic reactants contained therein to course through the tubing and into the dispensing nozzle. When a particular dispensing operation has been completed, subsequent utilization of the contents remaining in the vessels may be accomplished only upon replacement of the entire tubing and of the dispenser nozzle. This is so because of the tendency of the isocyanate component to react with hydroxyl groups of the moisture from the atmosphere. With respect to the instant invention, inasmuch as the tubing portions 24 are located rearwardly of the dispensing valves 14, it is clear, therefore, that the tubing portions 24 and the reactant components released therethrough are never exposed directly to the atmosphere. Hence, subsequent utilization of the contents remaining in the pressurized vessels 27 and 29 merely requires replacement of the relatively short lengths of tubing portions 76 and of the dispensing nozzle 18.

With reference to FIG. 5, the dispensing valve 14, shown in a resting position, includes a rigid valve element 81. A recessed panel 82 integral with the collar 30 is centrally perforated to receive an elastomeric sealing body 84 having a central bore which resiliently receives the valve element 81. The valve element 81 is tubular and is radially apertured posteriorly with dispensing ports 86 which are enveloped by the sealing body 84 and which pass the contents of the pressurized vessels whenever the valve element 81 is actuated in a manner which will be described more fully hereinafter with respect to FIG. 6. The valve element is closed posteriorly with a flat panel element 88 which squarely abuts the radially outwardly extending flange portion 90 of the sealing body 84 when the valve element 81 is in a resting or nondispensing position. The valve element 81 has an externally threaded anterior portion 92 which is received by a corresponding internally threaded posterior portion of the jacket or gasket portion 72 of the dispensing valve 14.

The valve-receiving body 26 opens rearwardly and is received by a fitment 94 comprising, at the posterior portion thereof, the rearwardly extending threaded tubular connector inlet member 22. Inlet member 22 extends forwardly for integral junction with hollow fitment element 96 which is received in threaded engagement by the posterior portion of the valve-receiving body 26. The anterior tip of the hollow fitment element 96 extends radially inwardly to form a shoulder 98 which, when the dispensing valves 14 are actuated, retains in fixed position a flared lip member 100 radially outwardly extending from the flange portion 90. The hollow fitment element 96 includes an internal base portion 102 having upper and lower lugs 104 extending forwardly therefrom and residing in spaced-apart relation. The function of the lugs 104 and of the shoulder 98 will be discussed more fully hereinafter in connection with FIG. 6.

The stem 78 of the gasket portion 72 has a substantially smooth-walled external surface and an external annular collar portion 106 integral with the surface thereof, the annular collar portion 106 being located substantially adjacent the anterior tip of the stem 78. A frustoconical tip portion 108 integral with the annular collar portion 106 and located at the anterior terminus of the stem 78 serves to releasably telescope into the tubing portion 76, thereby promoting facile disengagement of the dispensing nozzle 18 from the dispensing valves 14 whenever replacement of the dispensing nozzle 18 and of the tubing portion 76, for subsequent utilization of the contents of the pressurized vessels, as discussed hereinabove, is desired. The tubular connector member 80 (FIG. 7), however, has external ribbed portions 110 integral with the surface thereof for embedded engagement with the tubing portion 76.

Turning to a consideration of FIG. 6, the valve element 81 is shown in a tilted, operating or dispensing position. When the trigger 56 is manually depressed, the plate 58 surrounding the gasket portion or jacket 72 forces each valve element 81 downwardly. The flared lip member 100 radially outwardly extending from the flange portion 90 of the elastomeric sealing body 84 abuts the shoulder 98 of the fork fitment member 94 whereby to hold the flange portion 90 in a relatively fixed position during the dispensing operation. That portion of the valve element 81 within the cavity of the valve-receiving body 26 arches upwardly to deform the flange portion 90 whereby to expose the dispensing port 86 for receipt of the contents of the pressurized vessel. The limit of the arc described by the valve element 81 in the cavity of the valve-receiving body 26 is defined at the point of engagement of the lug 104 by the panel element 88. When a particular insulation or other task has been completed, operation of the dispensing apparatus 10 may be ceased by releasing the trigger 56, thereby closing the ports 86 with respect to the contents of the pressurized vessels.

With reference to FIG. 7, the dispensing nozzle 18 comprises a tubular housing portion 112, a dispensing or outlet cap portion 114 located at the anterior terminus of the housing portion 112, a receiving or inlet cap 116 located at the posterior terminus of the housing portion 112, and a static mixing element 118 located substantially within the housing portion 112. Inasmuch as it is contemplated that the dispensing nozzle be discarded once a particular use of the apparatus has been completed, it is desirable, therefore, to fabricate the housing portion 112 as an inexpensive resinous plastic part. The outlet cap portion 114 includes a cap element 119 integral with the housing portion 112, the cap element 119 having a centrally located, diametrically extending discharge aperture 120 therethrough for purposes of dispensing the foaming product.

Instead of the diametrically extending aperture 120, the cap may be preferably perforated with one or more substantially round discharge apertures where streams of urethane foam, rather than a fan discharge, are desirable.

The static mixing element 118 is fabricated from a chemically inert resin such as polypropylene or a polyethylene and structurally comprises a solid central stem portion 122 and a spiraled fin 124 cooperating with the stem 122 to define a radially outwardly opening, spiral mixing groove 126. The posterior portion of the static mixing element 118 is provided with a base 126 having a conical premix chamber 128 contained therein. A port 130 opens from the premix chamber 128 into the spiral mixing groove 126. The static mixing element 118 includes a radially outwardly extending flange 132 at the posterior terminus thereof, the flange 132 abutting the edge of one end of the housing portion 112 whereby to fix the position of the static mixing element 118 relative to the housing portion 112. Inasmuch as the static mixing element 118 is shorter in length than is the housing portion 112, the location of the static mixing element 118 with respect to the housing portion 112 creates an expansion chamber 134 between the end of the central stem portion 122 and the outlet cap 114. The expansion chamber 134 promotes foaming of the urethane product formed when the isocyanate component and the polyol component are mixed in the premix chamber 128.

The receiving or inlet cap 116 includes a cup portion 136 which telescopes about the posterior portion of the housing portion 112 and about the rearwardly extending portion of the static mixing element 118 residing in abutting relation with the housing portion 112. The cup portion 136 includes a back plate element 138 having apertures therein, the apertures opening rearwardly into the tubular connector members 80 and opening anteriorly into the premix chamber 128.

Thus, manual depression of the trigger 56 tilts the valve elements 81 of the dispensing valves 14, thereby opening the dispensing ports 86 to permit passage of material from the pressurized vessels 27 and 29 through the tubing portions 24 and into the ports 86, the material thence coursing through the tubing portions 76 and into the premix chamber 128 of the dispensing nozzle 18. The isocyanate component and the polyol component begin to react in the premix chamber 128 whereupon to pass through the port 130 and into the static mixing element 118. The resultant urethane product is then caused to foam in the expansion chamber 134 and is subsequently passed through the aperture 120 of the outlet cap 114. As illustrated in broken outline in FIG. 4, manual depression of the trigger 56 not only tiltably actuates the valve elements 81 but also causes the dispensing nozzle 18 connected therewith to be vertically displaced from a resting or nondispensing position to an operating or dispensing position. The tongue element 54, underlying the dispensing nozzle 18 and positioned intermediate the tubing portions 76, serves to support the nozzle 18 when it is downwardly vertically displaced whereby to define the limit of its downward displacement and further to maintain the nozzle 18 in substantially longitudinal alignment with respect to the remainder of the dispenser apparatus 10 for effectively controlled one-hand operation thereof.

When it is desired to cease operation of the dispenser apparatus 10, one merely has to release the manual trigger 56. The resiliency of the flange portions 90 of the sealing bodies 84 enclose about the dispensing ports 86 and urge the valve elements 81 into their normal nondispensing position, thereby terminating flow. When it is desired to restart the apparatus, only the relatively short tubing portions 76 and the dispensing nozzle 18 need be replaced, a considerably less expensive venture than that encountered when it is desired to restart prior portable dispenser apparatus having its reactant-containing vessels secured with respect to the dispenser apparatus proper, the expense incurred for continual replacement of substantially longer tubing portions and of the dispensing nozzle thereof being more pronounced.