Title:
Easy Open Container and Lid Structure
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A lid structure comprising a metal lid in the form of a disc (20) and a plastics ring (1). A lug (6) on the ring is snap-fitted around the exposed edge (25) of the lid. The lid structure can be fitted onto a filled container by application of a downward force until a lower profile (7) on the ring is forced around a curl or other feature on the top edge of the container. Outward expansion of the lid structure provides further retention on the container. The plastics ring of the lid structure has one or more weakened regions which can be torn to release the lid structure from the container without the need for any tool.



Inventors:
Philippe, Michel (Bourg les Valence, FR)
Richeux, Jean-marc Andre (St. Genis-Laval, FR)
Application Number:
11/816862
Publication Date:
08/07/2008
Filing Date:
01/17/2006
Assignee:
Crown Packaging Technology, Inc. (Alsip, IL, US)
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
53/476, 215/256
International Classes:
B65D17/40; B65B7/00; B65D41/32
View Patent Images:
Related US Applications:
20060266750Container lid adapted for resealing of containerNovember, 2006Lesquir
20070246463MODULER FLUID CONTAINMENT UNITOctober, 2007Hoffman
20060091098Closure system for a vial, vial, method of closing and filling a vial and stand for a vialMay, 2006Thilly et al.
20050258175Pull tab and methodNovember, 2005Robertson
20080237242Insulated holder with fluid container openerOctober, 2008Gifford
20070158355Hole plugJuly, 2007Siragusa et al.
20060269774High thermal conductivity, high yield strength, metal composite and methodNovember, 2006Demers
20080128423Self-warming moisturizing lotion in a dual chamber bottleJune, 2008Rick et al.
20090026201COATED LIFT-TAB FOR RESEALING POP-TOP CONTAINERSJanuary, 2009Hall et al.
20050242101Seal-coated plastic container for dispensing a pressurized productNovember, 2005Skalitzky
20090152277Portable Safety DishJune, 2009Williamson



Foreign References:
CH642316A51984-04-13
FR2387855A11978-11-17
Primary Examiner:
PERREAULT, ANDREW D
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
BakerHostetler (Philadelphia, PA, US)
Claims:
1. A manually removable lid structure comprising: a metal lid having a centre panel and an outer wall terminating in a generally outwardly extending annulus; and a plastics ring comprising an inwardly extending annular shoulder and a peripheral skirt depending from the shoulder, the skirt having an inwardly extending lug which clips against an edge of the lid with the shoulder extending over the lid annulus, and a lower profile which is complementary to a profile of an upper edge of a container body to which, in use, the lid structure is to be fixed; a line of weakening along which at least part of the lower profile of the ring is manually deformable or tearable for opening a container to which the lid structure is attached.

2. A lid structure according to claim 1, in which the centre panel of the lid is joined to the outer wall by a generally U-shaped channel.

3. A lid structure according to claim 2, further including sealing compound around the lid annulus and adjacent the outer wall.

4. A lid structure according to claim 2, in which the line of weakening defines a tamper evident strip or band.

5. An easy open container comprising: a metal can body having an open top with an outward curl at the edge of the opening; a lid structure that includes: a metal lid having a centre panel and an outer wall terminating in a generally outwardly extending annulus; a plastics ring comprising an inwardly extending annular shoulder and a peripheral skirt depending from the shoulder, the skirt having an inwardly extending lug which clips against the edge of the lid with the shoulder extending over the lid annulus, and a lower profile which is complementary to the profile of the upper edge of a container body to which, in use, the lid structure is to be fixed; and a line of weakening along which at least part of the lower profile of the ring is manually deformable or tearable for opening the container to which the lid structure is attached, with the lower profile of the ring engaging the can body curl; in which the outer wall of the metal lid is seated within the can body and the outer wall and the can body have complementary outwardly extending beads, and in which, in use, a weakened part is operable manually removing the lid structure from the can body.

6. A method of sealing an easy open container, the method comprising: providing a lid structure that includes: a metal lid having a centre panel and an outer wall terminating in a generally outwardly extending annulus; a plastics ring comprising an inwardly extending annular shoulder and a peripheral skirt depending from the shoulder, the skirt having an inwardly extending lug which clips against the edge of the lid with the shoulder extending over the lid annulus, and a lower profile which is complementary to the profile of the upper edge of a container body to which, in use, the lid structure is to be fixed; and a line of weakening along which at least part of the lower profile of the ring is manually deformable or tearable for opening the container to which the lid structure is attached, placing the lid structure over the open end of a metal container body; applying downward pressure to force the lid and ring combination down onto the container body so that the lower profile of the plastics ring engages the upper edge of the container body and an outer wall of the lid is adjacent part of the container body side wall; and maintaining the downward pressure whilst applying a radially outward expansion force to deform the outer wall of the lid and the adjacent body wall into a complementary bead.

Description:

TECHNICAL FIELD

This invention relates to an easy open container. In particular, but not exclusively it related to a lid structure for an easy open container for packaging liquids such as paint, or solids such as powders.

BACKGROUND ART

It is known to provide metal containers for packaging paint in which the container has a body with seamed or integral base, a metal ring which is seamed to the open end of the can body, and a press-on lid which can be opened by inserting a lever into a channel at the edge of the ring.

In an alternative design, the press-on lid has a U-shaped channel for inserting the lever, and a flange, which extends radially outwardly from the channel. A plastics ring is clipped over the raw edge of the lid and extends around an outwardly rolled circumferential edge flange of the can body when the lid is pressed down onto the can body.

Numerous arrangements of recess have been described but essentially all of these require the insertion of a tool to release an interlock between the lid and container body or ring. These designs rely on the lever opening principle and therefore require some form of tool in order to lever open the container. In some examples, the lever acts against a springy wall of the container, ring or lid so that the container is reclosable and there is minimal distortion of the container on opening.

DISCLOSURE OF INVENTION

According to the present invention, there is provided a manually removable lid structure comprising: a metal lid, having a centre panel and a outer wall terminating in a generally outwardly extending annulus; and

a plastics ring comprising an inwardly extending annular shoulder and a peripheral skirt depending from the shoulder, the skirt having an inwardly extending lug which clips against the edge of the lid with the shoulder extending over the lid annulus, and a lower profile which is complementary to the profile of the upper edge of a container body to which, in use, the lid structure is to be fixed; characterised by line of weakening along which at least part of the lower profile of the ring is manually deformable or tearable for opening the container to which the lid structure is attached.

In contrast with lever lids of the prior art, the plastics ring of the lid structure provides openability when the lid structure is fixed to a container, without the need for any tool. After tearing the lower ring profile, the lid structure is removable from the container, such that the container appears to the user to have only two parts.

The centre panel of the lid may be joined to the outer wall by a generally U-shaped channel. This prevents excessive intrusion of the lid structure into the headspace of the can body. Typically, sealing compound may be provided around the lid annulus and adjacent the outer wall.

The line of weakening is usually tearable and defines a tamper evident strip or band.

According to a further aspect of the present invention, there is provided an easy open container comprising: a metal can body having an open top; the lid structure as described above, with the lower profile of the ring engaging the edge of the can body opening; in which the outer wall of the metal lid is seated within the container body and the outer wall and the container body have complementary outwardly extending beads, and in which, in use, the weakened part of the ring profile is operable manually removing the lid structure from the can body.

Typically, the can body has an outward curl at the edge of the opening so that the ring engages this can body curl.

According to yet another aspect of the present invention, there is provided a method of sealing an easy open container, the method comprising:

placing the lid structure over the open end of a metal container body; applying downward pressure to force the lid and ring combination down onto the container body so that the lower profile of the plastics ring engages the upper edge of the container body and an outer wall of the lid is adjacent part of the container body side wall; and maintaining the downward pressure whilst applying a radially outward expansion force to deform the outer wall of the lid and the adjacent body wall into complementary beads.

Generally, the method may be used with a lid structure having a U-shaped channel so that an expandable tool may be inserted into the channel for applying radial force to the channel outer wall to form the beads.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

Preferred embodiments of the invention will now be described, by way of example only, with reference to the drawings, in which:

FIG. 1 is a perspective view from above of the plastics ring;

FIG. 2 is a perspective view from below of the plastics ring;

FIG. 3 is a side section of the plastics ring, through the cut in area ‘C’;

FIG. 4 is a side section of the plastics ring, through the cut in area ‘D’;

FIG. 5 is a schematic side view showing the plastics ring and metal lid assembly;

FIGS. 6 to 9 are schematic side views showing the application of the lid structure onto a can body; and

FIG. 10 is a schematic side view of the closed container.

MODE FOR THE INVENTION

The plastics ring of FIG. 1 has an annular shoulder 2 and a skirt having an inner wall 3 and an outer wall 4. A tab feature 5 on the outer wall is provided for gripping by a user when opening a container as is described in more detail below. Lug 6 of the example is a fully circumferential lug for engaging a metal lid to form a lid structure and a lower profile 7 on the inner wall for engaging the container body.

FIG. 2 is an underneath isometric view of the ring of FIG. 1, showing cut regions ‘A’, ‘B’, ‘C’ and ‘D’. In the side sections of FIGS. 3 and/or 4, the annular shoulder 2, lug 6 and tab 5 can be clearly identified. Lower profile 7 includes teeth 8 in uncut regions which assist in gripping the container body. The cut in the ‘C’ area is indicated by reference 9 in FIG. 3 that of the ‘D’ area by reference 10 which extends from the tab 5 of FIG. 4.

FIG. 5 shows the lid structure which combines the plastics ring 1 with a metal lid 20. The lid 20 comprises a centre panel 21, inner and outer walls defining a channel 22, the outer wall 23 leading into an outwardly extending annulus 24, and terminating in a raw edge. As can be seen from the figure, the plastics ring is clipped over the annulus 24 so the shoulder 2 covers annulus 24 and lug 6 covers the edge of the lid at 25.

In FIG. 6, downward pressure is applied by tool 40 onto the shoulder 2 to force the lid structure downwardly onto a filled container 30. As the lower profile 7 contacts can body curl 31, the ring 1 pivots outwardly and then snaps around the curl into the position of FIG. 7. In FIG. 7, the lid structure is fixed to the can body 30, with sealing compound 26 between the annulus 24 of the metal lid and the top of curl 31. The lower profile 7 of the plastics ring has a shape complementary to that of the curl 31 and provides even contact around the curl.

The next stage of applying the lid structure provides further engagement between the outer wall 23 of channel 22. A downwardly extending portion 41 of the tool 40 has a radially outwardly extending bead 42 which is moved into contact with the outer wall 23 by applying a radial expansion force. Downward pressure is maintained whilst the expansion force is applied to ensure correct positioning of the bead 42 against the outer wall 23. By maintaining downward pressure during expansion, the compression of the compound is maintained during the expansion. This compression is also maintained after the blocking of the lid in the body and partly by the plastic ring. The combined forces are applied until complementary beads are formed in the lid wall 23 and can body wall 32, beneath the curl 31. The tool 40 is then retracted radially, with downward pressure maintained (FIG. 9) and tool 40 removed to leave the finished structure of FIG. 10.

The invention has been described above by way of example only and changes may be made to the method of forming the lid structure or of applying it to a container body without departing from the scope of the invention as defined by the claims. For example, although the complementary feature 32 has been described as a “bead”, clearly this feature could be series of beads, independent lugs or other complementary feature.