Title:
Pull tab spout
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A pull tab spout for a bottle neck has a tubular inner member having a bottle end opposite a pouring end, the bottle end being configured to sealingly engage the inner wall of a neck. A skirt extends about the bottle end of the spout outwardly thereof to define a recess for receiving the mouth of the bottle. A shoulder extends between and joins the skirt to the inner member and defines a guide surface for guiding a rim of a closure cap onto an outer face of the skirt. The outer face of the skirt has outwardly extending threads for engaging corresponding inwardly extending threads of the cap. The skirt has at least one inwardly extending protrusion to secure the spout to the bottle. A pull tab extends across an interior and is secured by a frangible membrane. The pull tab has a graspable protrusion to facilitate removal of the pull tab by tearing the frangible membrane.



Inventors:
Mahdi, Sabet (Ajax, CA)
Segovia, Fernando (Oakville, CA)
Application Number:
10/313112
Publication Date:
04/08/2004
Filing Date:
12/06/2002
Assignee:
MAHDI SABET
SEGOVIA FERNANDO
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
215/254
International Classes:
B65D47/10; B65D47/12; (IPC1-7): B65D51/20
View Patent Images:
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20070199948Air Venting SystemAugust, 2007Ericson
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20050092753Trash bag dispenserMay, 2005Best
20080185250Case with compression bagsAugust, 2008Martins et al.



Primary Examiner:
BOMBERG, KENNETH
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Nexsen Pruet Jacobs & Pollard, LLC,John B. Hardaway, III (P.O. Box 10107, Greenville, SC, 29603, US)
Claims:

We claim:



1. A pull tab spout for a bottle neck having a neck, a mouth at one end, an inner wall defining a passage extending into an interior of said bottle, an outer wall defining an outer surface of said neck, and a ridge extending about said outer wall of neck spaced apart from said mouth, said spout comprising: a generally tubular inner member having a bottle end opposite a pouring end, said bottle end being configured to sealingly engage said inner wall of said neck; a skirt extending about said bottle end outwardly thereof to define a recess therebetween for receiving said mouth of said bottle; a shoulder extending between and joining said skirt to said inner member, and defining a guide surface devoid of any recess for guiding a rim of a closure cap onto an outer face of said skirt; said outer face of said skirt having outwardly extending threads adjacent said shoulder for engaging corresponding inwardly extending threads of said closure cap; said skirt having at least one inwardly extending protrusion for engaging said ridge to secure said spout to said bottle; a pull tab extending across an interior of said inner member to block fluid flow therethrough and secured to an inner face of said inner member by a frangible member extending therebetween; said pull tab further having a graspable protrusion extending therefrom and accessible from said pouring end of said inner member to facilitate removal of said pull tab by tearing said frangible membrane.

2. The pull tab spout of claim 1 wherein: a sealing lip extends from said shoulder into said recess between said bottle end of said inner member and said skirt to sealingly abut against said mouth of said bottle and block fluid passage past said shoulder onto said outer wall of said neck.

3. The pull tab spout of claim 2 wherein: said pouring end, distal said bottle end has a radially outwardly extending lip.

4. The pull tab spout of claim 3 wherein: said skirt has a plurality of said inwardly extending protrusions, spaced apart to allow drainage of fluid therebetween.

5. The pull tab spout of claim 4 further having: a plurality of spaced apart splash control tabs extending inwardly from said inner face of said inner member and away from said pouring end.

6. The pull tab spout of claim 5 wherein: said splash control tabs extend from said bottle end of said inner member and said pull tab is located between said splash control tabs and said graspable member.

7. The pull tab spout of claim 6 wherein: said graspable member is a ring having first and second ends secured to said pull tab adjacent one another and said frangible membrane.

8. The pull tab spout of claim 7 wherein: said inner face of said inner member includes undercuts adjacent said splash control tabs to accommodate said splash control tabs during stripping of said pull tab spout from a plastic injection moulding assembly.

Description:

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

[0001] This invention relates generally to closures for containers which may be injection moulded from plastic resins. More particularly this invention relates to pouring spouts securable over the mouth of a bottle having a removable tamper evident tab (i.e. a “pull tab spout”) and provision for engaging a cap for resealably closing the spout.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

[0002] FIG. 1 is an axial cross-sectional view illustrating a prior art pull tab spout which is generally indicated by reference 10. The spout 10 has a generally tubular inner member 12 having a pouring end 14 and a bottle end 16. A downwardly depending skirt 18 extends from an outer face 15 of the inner member 12 and about the bottle end 16. A recess 20 is defined between the skirt 18 and the bottle end 16 for accommodating a mouth of a bottle (not shown) over which the pull tab spout 10 is to be secured. A continuous latch ring 22 extends radially inwardly from and about an inner face 24 of the skirt 18 for engaging a lip extending about the mouth of the bottle. The outer face 15 of the bottle end 16 of the spout 10 sealingly engages an inner wall of a neck of the container below its mouth.

[0003] A plurality of splash/flow control tabs 26 are provided to facilitate pouring, particularly when the spout 10 is used with a vegetable oil bottle. The splash tabs 26 extend radially inwardly and downwardly from an inner face 28 of the spout 10.

[0004] A tab 30 extends across the inner member 12 and is affixed to the inner face 28 by a frangible membrane 32. A handle in the form of a ring 34 extends from the tab 30 to facilitate removal of the tab 30 from the balance of the spout 10 (hence the term “pull tab”). The tab 10 in conjunction with the frangible membrane 32 seals the spout 10 prior to use and accordingly provides “tamper evidence” should it be found to be dislodged.

[0005] A threaded ring 35 extends upwardly from an upper end 36 of the skirt 18 spaced apart from the inner member 12 to define a recess 37 therebetween. The threaded ring 35 has radially outwardly extending threads 38 for engaging corresponding inwardly extending threads 40 of a cap 42 for closing the spout 10.

[0006] The above described prior art spout 10 has a number of shortcomings which affect its manufacture, its use and its effectiveness. The recess 37 between the inner member 12 and threaded ring 35 acts as a receptacle for fluid and proves exceedingly difficult to wipe clean.

[0007] The threaded ring 35 has an abrupt upper edge which is difficult to align with the cap 42. This can pose problems to those with mobility challenges. Even to those not so challenged, several attempts may be required to properly align the threads 40 of the cap 42 with the threads 38 of the threaded ring 35.

[0008] The only sealing engagement of the spout 10 with a bottle is a close fit between the outer face 15 of the inner member 12 at its bottle end 16 with the inner wall of the neck of the container. This may not provide as effective a seal as may be desired.

[0009] Additionally, the prior art spout 10 is relatively complex to manufacture in an injection moulding process. It requires three or more ejection stages on both the core and the cavity side to accommodate the “undercuts”.

[0010] It is an object of the present invention to provide a pull tab spout which is simpler to mould, easier to use and simpler to cap than prior art spouts of the type described above.

BRIEF SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0011] In very general terms, inventive features of the pull tab spout of the present invention include: providing cap engaging threads on the skirt rather than on a threaded ring; eliminating the threaded ring to eliminate the associated difficult to wipe recess; providing a shoulder with a smooth guide surface to guide the cap threads onto the spout threads; providing a seal extending from the underside of the shoulder to engage the mouth of the bottle; and, segmenting the latch ring to facilitate drainage of fluid which finds its way between the bottle neck and the spout.

[0012] More particularly, a pull tab spout is provided for a bottle having neck, having a mouth at one end, an inner wall defining a passage extending into an interior of the bottle, an outer wall defining an outer surface of the neck and a ridge extending about an outer wall of the neck spaced apart from the mouth. The spout has a generally tubular inner member having a bottle end opposite a pouring end, the bottle end being configured to sealingly engage the inner wall of the neck. A skirt extends about the bottle end outwardly thereof to define a recess therebetween for receiving the mouth of the bottle. A shoulder extends between and joins the skirt to the inner member and defines a guide surface devoid of any recess for guiding a rim of a closure cap onto an outer face of the skirt. The outer face of the skirt has outwardly extending threads adjacent the shoulder for engaging corresponding inwardly extending threads of the closure cap. The skirt has at least one inwardly extending protrusion for engaging the ridge to secure the spout to the bottle. A pull tab extends across an interior of the first member to block fluid flow therethrough and is secured to an inner face of the first member by a frangible membrane extending therebetween. The pull tab further has a graspable protrusion extending therefrom and accessible from the pouring end of the inner member to facilitate removal of the pull tab by tearing the frangible membrane.

[0013] A sealing lip may extend from the shoulder into the recess between the bottle end of the inner member and the skirt to sealingly abut against the mouth of the bottle and block fluid passage past the shoulder onto the outer wall of the neck.

[0014] The pouring end, distal the bottle end may have a radially outwardly extending lip.

[0015] The skirt may have a plurality of the inwardly extending protrusions, spaced apart to promote drainage of fluid therebetween.

[0016] A plurality of spaced apart splash control tabs may extend inwardly from the inner face of the inner member and away from the pouring end.

[0017] The splash control tabs may extend from the bottle end of the inner member with the pull tab located between the splash control tabs and the graspable member.

[0018] The graspable member may be a ring having first and second ends secured adjacent one another to the pull tab adjacent the frangible membrane.

[0019] The inner face of the inner member may include undercuts adjacent the splash control tabs to accommodate the splash control tabs during stripping of the pull tab spout from a plastic injection moulding assembly.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0020] Preferred embodiments of the present invention are described below with reference to the accompanying drawings in which:

[0021] FIG. 1 is an axial cross-sectional view illustrating a prior art pull tab spout;

[0022] FIG. 2 is an axial cross-sectional view of a pull tab spout according to the present invention in association with a bottle neck and cap to illustrate its use;

[0023] FIG. 3 is an axial cross-sectional view corresponding to FIG. 2 but illustrating the spout on its own;

[0024] FIG. 4 is a top plan view illustrating a spout according to the present invention; and

[0025] FIG. 5 is a bottom plan view of a pull tab spout according to the present invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF INVENTION

[0026] A pull tab spout according to the present invention is generally indicated by reference 100 in the accompanying illustrations. As illustrated in FIG. 2, the spout 100 is mountable over a neck 200 of a bottle, the neck 200 having a mouth 202 and an inner wall 204 defining a passage extending into an interior of the bottle (only the neck portion of the bottle is illustrated). The neck 200 further has an outer wall 206 defining an outer surface of the neck 200. The mouth 202 extends between the inner wall 202 and outer wall 204 of the neck 200. A ridge 208 extends about the neck 200 spaced apart but generally parallel to the mouth 202.

[0027] The spout 100 has a generally tubular inner member 102 with a bottle end 104 (toward the bottom of FIGS. 2 and 3) opposite a pour end 106 (toward the top of FIGS. 2 and 3). The bottle end 104 is configured to sealingly engage the inner wall 204 of the neck 200 by being dimensioned so as to be a snug fit therein.

[0028] A skirt 110 extends about the bottle end 104 of the inner member 102, radially outwardly thereof. A recess 112 is defined between the skirt 110 and the bottle end 104 to receive the mouth 202 and adjacent neck 200 of the bottle.

[0029] A shoulder 120 extends between and joins the skirt 110 to the inner member 102 between its bottle end 104 and its pouring end 106. The shoulder 120 has a smooth upper guide surface 121, which slopes downwardly and curves toward the upper part of the skirt 110. The shoulder 120, and in particular its guide surface 121 acts to guide a lower lip 302 of a cap 300 onto an outer face 114 of the skirt 110. This assists in aligning outwardly extending threads 116 extending from the outer face 114 adjacent the shoulder 120 with inwardly extending threads 304 on the cap 300. This also simplifies mould design and eliminates an ejection stage from the cavity side of the mould.

[0030] The skirt 110 has at least one inwardly extending protrusion 118 for engaging the ridge 208 to secure the spout 100 to the next 200 of the bottle. Preferably a plurality of spaced apart protrusions 118 will extend circumferentially about the skirt to securely hold the spout 100 to the neck 200 yet allow drainage of any fluid which happens to seep into the space between the neck 200 and the skirt 110. Such an arrangement is illustrated in FIG. 5.

[0031] A pull tab 130 extends across an interior of the inner member 102 to block fluid flow through the inner member 102. The pull tab 130 is secured to an inner face 122 of the inner member 102 by a frangible membrane 132 extending therebetween. The pull tab 130 has a graspable protrusion in the form of a ring 140 secured thereto to facilitate removal of the pull tab 130 to put the spout 100 into service as a spout. The pull tab 130 provides tamper evidence to a user.

[0032] The ring 140 may as illustrated have opposite ends 142 and 144 secured to (i.e. integrally formed with) the pull tab 130 adjacent one another and adjacent the frangible membrane 132. No doubt other arrangements for facilitating removal of the pull tab 130 will occur to those skilled in such apparatus. The ring 140 or other graspable protrusion should be readily formable by injection moulding along with the balance of the spout, it should be digitally manipulatable with relative ease and store beneath the cap 300. The ring 140 should be readily accessible upon removal of the cap 300 and accordingly should be located on the side of the pull tab 130 facing the pouring end of the spout 100.

[0033] To provide an enhanced seal between the spout 100 and the neck 200, a sealing lip 150 may be provided which extends from the shoulder 120 downwardly (as illustrated) into the recess 112 between the skirt 110 and the bottle part 104. The lip 150 is pressed against the mouth 202 of the bottle by the engagement of the protrusions 118 with the ridge 208 to provide a secondary seal. Further sealing may be provided by configuring the neck 200 of the bottle as illustrated in FIG. 1 to press against an interior face 152 of the skirt 110.

[0034] To better control pouring of a fluid from the bottle, splash control tabs 160 may be provided which extend inwardly and downwardly as illustrated in FIGS. 2 and 3.

[0035] The splash control tabs 160 act as baffles to control fluid flow through the spout 100. To facilitate stripping of the spout 100 from an injection mould assembly, an undercut or recess 162 may be provided under each splash control tab 160 into which the splash control tab may be pressed during a stripping portion of an injection moulding cycle.

[0036] To further facilitate pouring with the spout 100, the pouring end 106 may be provided with a radially outwardly extending lip 166 distal the bottle end 104.

[0037] The above description is intended in an illustrative rather than a restrictive sense. Variations to the specific structure described may be apparent to persons skilled in the art without departing from the spirit and scope of the present invention which is defined by the claims set out below.





 
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