1. A one-piece molded device for sequentially forming one or a plurality of circumferentially spaced openings in a cylindrical filter-defining end portion of a cigarette to admit air from the ambient atmosphere into smoke passing through said filter-defining end portion prior to said smoke entering a user's mouth, said device including:
2. A device as defined in claim 1 wherein said first means are first and second hooks that extend towards one another from the interior of said first and second elongate members, with said first and second hooks interlocking only when said first and second elongate members are in said first position.
3. A device as defined in claim 2 wherein said second means is a tubular sleeve supported from the interior of said first elongate member, which sleeve has a longitudinal slot formed therein through which said prong may be moved to pierce said filter-defining end portion.
4. A device as defined in claim 3 wherein said first and second elongate members, first and second hooks, said sleeve and said prong are injection molded from a polymerized resin as an integral unit.
5. A device as defined in claim 4 wherein one of said first or second hooks is so disposed as to act as a stop to limit the extent to which said filter-defining end portion can be moved inwardly into the device, and said openings as a result thereof lying in a common transverse plane normal to the longitudinal axis of said cigarette.
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
1. Field of the Invention
A cigarette piercing device.
2. Description of the Prior Art
In the past, various types of devices have been proposed for use in piercing a cigarette to provide a number of openings therein through which air may be drawn from the ambient atmosphere to cool the smoke, prior to the smoke being drawn into a user's mouth. The majority of such devices available heretofore are of a complicated nature, difficult to use, and as a result, have had little or no public acceptance.
The primary purpose in devising the present invention is to supply a cigarette piercer in which the filter-defining end portion of a cigarette has either a single opening formed therein or a sequence of circumferentially spaced openings through which air may enter to mix with the smoke whereby the smoke is diluted and cooled as a result thereof prior to being drawn into a user's mouth.
Another object of the invention is to furnish a molded elongate blank formed from a rigid, but somewhat resilient polymerized resin, which by a simple bending operation, may be disposed in a configuration to define the cigarette-piercing unit.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
The device is of a one-piece molded construction that is adapted for forming either a single opening in the cylindrical cigarette filter-defining end portion of a cigarette, or a sequence of circumferentially spaced openings therein, with the openings admitting air from the ambient atmosphere into the interior of the cigarette filter-defining end to cool the smoke therein prior to the passage of smoke into the mouth of the user. The device is formed from a molded blank of polymerized resin, which blank includes first and second elongate members of transverse channel-shaped cross section, with the elongate members being axially aligned and merging together to provide a hinge. Due to the resiliency of the material defining the hinge, it is possible for the first and second elongate members to be disposed one above the other, with the first free of the first and second elongate members at all times tending to move away from one another.
First means are provided, which are formed as a part of the first and second elongate members, that limit the lateral movement of the second elongate member relative to the first elongate member. Second means are operatively associated with the first ends of the first and second elongate members, and formed as a part of the first elongate member for centering the filter-defining end portion of a cigarette between the first and second elongate members, with the filter-defining end portion being rotatable when so centered.
A tapered prong extends from the interior surface of the second elongate member adjacent a first free end thereof, with the prong being formed as an integral part of the first elongate member, and not being in contact with the filter-defining end portion when the first of said second elongate members are in a first position. The prong is so located that when the second elongate member is moved to a second position relative to the first elongate member, the prong is moved downwardly through a slot formed in the second means to pierce the filter-defining end portion of the cigarette.
The second elongate end portion, after said opening is formed, is allowed to return to a first position relative to the second elongate member, with the filter-defining end portion then being rotated, and the operation repeated if more than one opening is desired to be formed in the filter-defining end portion of a cigarette. The first means are of such structure that they not only limit the lateral movement of the first and second elongate members relative to one another, but also serve the function of providing a stop to limit the extent to which the filter-defining end portion of the cigarette may be inserted into the device.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING
FIG. 1 is a perspective view of the one-piece cigarette piercing device;
FIG. 2 is an end elevational view of the device;
FIG. 3 is a perspective view of an integrally formed blank, which by a bending operation, may be formed into the cigarette piercing device shown in FIG. 1;
FIG. 4 is a longitudinal cross-sectional view of the device, taken on the line 4--4, with first and second elongate members of the device being in a first position; and
FIG. 5 is the same longitudinal cross-sectional view as shown in FIG. 4, but with the first and second elongate members having been moved to second positions, where a prong formed as a part of the device pierces a filter-defining end portion of a cigarette to form an opening in the end portion.
DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT
The cigarette piercing device A as shown in FIG. 1 is preferably formed from an injection molded blank B formed of a rigid, but resilient polymerized resin. The blank B, as may best be seen in FIG. 3, includes a first elongate member C is connected by a hinge D to a second elongate member E. The first and second elongate members C and E are in longitudinal alignment.
The first elongate member C, as best seen in FIG. 3, includes an elongate web 10 having a pair of flanges 12 extending upwardly from opposite sides thereof, and with the flanges tapering longitudinally. The second elongate member E includes an elongate web 14 having a pair of second flanges 16 extending upwardly from the longitudinal sides thereof. The first and second webs 10 and 20 have first and second hooks 18 and 21 projecting upwardly therefrom when the elongate members C and E are longitudinally disposed, as shown in FIG. 3.
The first web 10, as may be seen in FIGS. 1 and 3, has a centering device F formed as a part thereof in which a filter-defining end portion G of a cigarette H may be removably and rotatably positioned when the blank B has been bent to define the cigarette piercing device A, shown in FIGS. 1, 4 and 5. The centering device F is preferably formed from two cylindrical segments 22 that define a longitudinally extending slot 24 between the free longitudinal edges thereof, as shown in FIG. 3. The slot 24 is so disposed that the prong J may move downwardly therethrough when the first and second elongate members C and E have an inwardly directed force applied to the exterior surfaces thereof, to move the second elongate member towards the first elongate member to the second position shown in FIG. 5. When the elongate members C and E are moved from first to second positions, the prong J is moved downwardly through slot 24 to pierce the filter-defining end portion G of cigarette H. After an opening has been formed in the filter-defining end portions G, the first and second elongate members C and E are allowed to return to the first position shown in FIG. 4, with the filter-defining end portion G then being capable of rotation whereby another opening is formed therein by the prong J.
It will be particularly noted in FIGS. 4 and 5 that the hooks 18 and 21 interlock when the first and second members C and E are in the first position, and due to such interlocking, prevent and limit the lateral movement of the second elongate member E relative to the first elongate member C. Also, it will be noted in FIGS. 4 and 5 that the first hook 18 serves as a stop to limit the longitudinal distance that the filter-defining end portion G of the cigarette H can be extended into the cigarette piercing device A.
The blank B shown in FIG. 3 is transformed to the cigarette piercing device A simply by bending the blank on the hinge D to dispose first and second markers C and D in the first and second hooks 18 and 21 interlock.