Title:
DOUBLE CONTAINER WITH MIXING MEANS
United States Patent 3696919


Abstract:
The double container comprises an outer container having positioned therein substantially centrally a smaller inner container. Each mouth of both containers lie in approximately the same plane. Additionally, both containers are closed by the same single cap. The outer container may be longitudinally compressed so that access to the inner container may be obtained due to the elastomeric material with which at least the lower portion of the outer container is constructed. The inner container may be removed from its closed position to expose the contents therein to the contents in the outer container all within the outer container.



Inventors:
MILES GILBERT DEWAYNE
Application Number:
05/096104
Publication Date:
10/10/1972
Filing Date:
10/08/1970
Assignee:
COLGATE-PALMOLIVE CO.
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
215/6, 215/DIG.8, 604/416
International Classes:
B65D81/32; (IPC1-7): B65D79/00
Field of Search:
128/272 215
View Patent Images:
US Patent References:
3318484Compartmented pressurized dispensing device1967-05-09Modderno
3255926Compartmented pressurized dispensing device1966-06-14Modderno
2717598Hypodermic syringe1955-09-13Krasno
2615448Multiple chamber package1952-10-28Fields
2495942Multiple chamber container1950-01-31Nosik



Foreign References:
GB407559A
FR1274634A
GB746448A
IT574779A
DE915731C
FR1382399A1964-12-18
Primary Examiner:
Schacher, Richard A.
Assistant Examiner:
Grant, Edwin D.
Claims:
What is claimed is

1. A double container comprising an outer container having at least the lower portion thereof constructed of elastomeric material, said lower portion having a relatively smooth bottom and a relatively smooth side wall; a section of that portion above the said lower portion having flexible corrugations whereby the outer container may be shortened lengthwise due to the said corrugations, said container having a mouth, a closure mounted to close the mouth of said outer container, an inner container, said inner container being spaced from the sides and bottom of said outer container, said inner container having a mouth at one end thereof, the mouth of the outer container and the inner container extend in the same longitudinal direction, said closure having depending means for closing the mouth of said inner container, said lower portion being of relatively thin flexible elastomeric material whereby the said lower portion may be inwardly deformed when the outer container is shortened lengthwise and the inner container may be grasped by deforming the lower portion about the lower portion of the inner container.

2. The double container of claim 1 wherein the outer container has a cylindrical configuration.

3. The double container of claim 1 wherein the inner container has a cylindrical configuration.

4. The double container of claim 2 wherein the inner container has a cylindrical configuration.

5. The double container of claim 1 wherein the closure has a depending skirt having screw means and the mouth of said outer container has mating screw means whereby the closure may be screwed onto the outer container.

6. The double container of claim 1 wherein the underside of the closure has a plug means adapted to fit the mouth of the inner container by friction fit.

7. The double container of claim 5 wherein the underside of the closure has a plug means adapted to fit the mouth of the inner container by friction fit.

8. The container of claim 1 having liquid material both in the inner and outer containers.

Description:
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

Many liquid items are sold to the consuming public in containers. Frequently, the liquid items consist of more than one ingredient. In those situations where the liquid ingredients may be mixed at the point of fabrication and packaging, no problem ensues when the two liquids are mixed in a single container and sold in that fashion. However, frequently, it has been found quite undesirable to mix certain liquid ingredients at a point remote in time from actual use. In such instances the mutually reacting liquid ingredients must be kept separate until the time of use. It will be appreciated that this will entail the need for one or more containers to keep the liquids separate. Furthermore, the containers containing the liquids that are to be mixed must have a particular volume carrying capacity so that the liquids being mixed are done so in desirable acceptable mutually benefiting quantities. The problem of mixing two ingredients is also one to be reckoned with as one of the containers would have to be of a size sufficient to accommodate the liquid ingredients of the other container. Barring this type of utilization it would be necessary to obtain yet a third container into which all of the other ingredients may be charged at the time and need for use. Additionally, if either of these two methods are employed it will usually be advisable to provide a means for accomplishing thorough mixing such as by a paddle or the like. On the other hand, the container which has been charged with all of the ingredients may have provision for sealing it so that the container may be shaken in order to ensure a complete mixing. In any event, both means of mixing require the exposure of the liquid contents to the atmosphere prior to mixing with all of the attendant difficulties arising therefrom.

Of fairly recent vintage have been the numerous efforts to provide compartmented containers for two liquid ingredients which are maintained in a separate condition until mixing is accomplished at the time of need. There are numerous advantages attendant the use of a single vessel to contain two or more liquid ingredients in a separate condition until it is time to mix them. One especially intriguing feature is the fact that it would not be necessary to provide a special type of packaging unit to hold two containers as a single container would carry both liquid ingredients. Other advantages from such a device will obviously flow as one gives it further consideration. Even with this type of further improvement considerable difficulties are attendant the use thereof. For instance, the problem of bringing the two ingredients together while in a single container without opening the container to the atmosphere is not easy. Various valving arrangements have been used which require fairly expensive containers. Other arrangements in connection therewith relate to the breaking of the inner container, which may be made of glass, and thereby exposing the contents therein to the liquid in the outer container. Broken bits of glass, for instance, can pose certain other problems as would be obvious. Therefore, it is quite clear that there is yet additional room for inventive genious to provide a double container with mixing means as is set forth in the instant invention.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates to an outer container, generally, of cylindrical configuration which is constructed of a synthetic plastic material, for instance, an elastomeric material. The central wall portions of the cylindrical container have a bellows like configuration or a corrugated configuration. The utilization of this type of wall is to permit the cylindrical container to be compressed longitudinally with the corrugations or bellows becoming ever more folded. A closure cap is screwed to the outer container. Generally centrally located on the underside of the cap is a plug which operates as a stopper for a cylindrically shaped inner container of a diameter somewhat smaller than the diameter of the outer container. The stated plug is utilized as a stopper for the mouth of the inner cylindrical container.

DETAILED CONSIDERATION OF THE PRESENT INVENTION

FIG. 1 is a cross sectional view taken longitudinally of the container of the present invention having liquid ingredients therein.

FIG. 2 is the same type of cross sectional view of the container of the present invention showing the container in a compressed condition.

FIG. 3 shows the same cross sectional view with the lower portion of the outer container being squeezed inwardly radially in order to grasp the bottom portion of the inner container.

FIG. 4 is also a cross sectional view as the previous figures wherein the inner container has now been removed from its stoppered position.

Turning to the drawings, attention is directed to FIG. 1 which is a longitudinal cross sectional view of the inner and outer containers of the present invention. The outer container 11 is, generally, of a cylindrical configuration having a bottom 12 and a side wall 13. The outer container 11 has a large open mouth 14 as shown in FIG. 1. Near the top most portion of the container a screwthread 15 is located which mates with the screwthread 16 of a closure 17 having a depending skirt 18. Somewhat concentric with the depending skirt 18 is a plug 19 which may act as a stopper, as shown, for container 20 which has an open mouth 21. The leading edges of the mouth of each of the outer container and inner container are shown to be in a similar plane. Between the bottom 12 and the mouth 14 of the outer container, the outer container 11 has an area of corrugations 22. The utilization of these corrugations will be discussed below.

The inner container has a quantity of liquid 23 which may fill the inner container substantially completely. The outer container has a quantity of a liquid 24 which does not fill the outer container in that area between the inner container 20 and the walls and bottom of the outer container 11. Therefore, a head room space 25 is located above the liquid. It has been found that the head space 25 should be at least as large in volume to accommodate the features of the present invention as they are utilized and illustrated below.

FIG. 2 describes the same type of view as in FIG. 1. In use, the container 11 is compressed between the upper portion and the lower portion by means of further folding the corrugations 22 to the condition shown in FIG. 2. It will be seen therefrom that the bottom 26 of the inner container 20 is not displaced to the same extent from the bottom 12 of container 11 as is depicted in FIG. 1. Furthermore, the head space 25 has been practically eliminated or at least severely reduced.

Turning to FIG. 3 which is like FIG. 2 except for the collapsing of the bottom and side walls of the container 11 by means of squeezing between the fingers of one's hand in order to grasp the bottom portion of the container 20. The compression is, of course, continued. Once the bottom portion of the container has been grasped through the bottom and side wall portion of container 11 the inner container 20 may be withdrawn from the stopper 19 thereby exposing the mouth 21 of the inner container 20. At the same time, the corrugations 22 resume their normal condition. Also, the head space 25 is reestablished. The next step, of course, is to permit the fluid contents 23 to intermingle with the fluid contents 24 which may be established by inverting the container of the present invention and shaking same. After the contents have been mixed, the cap 17 may be unscrewed from the outer container thereby providing access to the contents in the outer container as well as the inner container which contents have now been intermingled.

The material of fabrication of the outer container must be of a sufficiently flexible nature whereby the outer container may be compressed in the manner shown in FIG. 2 and must also have at least its lower portion quite flexible so that the said lower portion may be collapsed about the lower portion of the inner container for retraction thereof from its closed position. It has been found that materials such as polyethylene and polypropylene are suitable in the fabrication of the present device. Other materials may be used having elastomeric features.

The inner container may be more rigidly constructed, if desired, or may also be fabricated of similar material.

The embodiment shown in the present invention depicts the utilization of a screw closure for the outer container. While this has been found to be efficacious, it is submitted that the screw type coacting means for the outer container and closure may be substituted with another type of locking means such as a friction fit.

The respective mouths of the outer container and the inner container as shown in the embodiment discussed in the above need not have the specific configuration shown wherein the mouth has the same internal diameter, for the most part, as the respective containers. For various reasons, it is entirely within the purview of the instant invention to provide the outer container with an inwardly directed shoulder terminating in a neck having a mouth therein. Likewise, the inner container may also have a contour configuration which follows the outer container. On the other hand, the inner container may be such that it is provided with an inwardly directed shoulder with the neck terminating in a relatively small mouth. In such an instance, the inner container will have a larger volume for containing liquid contents than is found in the embodiment shown.

While there have been shown and described particular embodiments of the invention, it will be obvious to those skilled in the art that various changes and modifications may be made therein without departing from the invention, and, therefore, it is aimed to cover all such changes and modifications as fall within the true spirit and scope of the invention.