Title:
Method for Coupling a Decorative Overcap to a Bottle Closure
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A bottle closure assembly 101, consisting of a decorative overcap 102 coupled with a bottle top closure 103. A decorative overcap 102 is coupled with a bottle closure 103 which may or may not already be secured on the bottle 104. The decorative overcap 102 can be coupled to the bottle closure 103 with adhesive 105, by interference fit or by interlocking fit. Additionally the method for coupling could be achieved by use of materials such as the overcap 102 being made of a heat shrink material or the bottle closure 103 being made of an expanding material. Additionally the method can be done mechanically or manually. The bottle closure assembly can be fixed or removably affixed. Once the decorative overcap 102 is coupled with the bottle closure 103, creating the assembly 101, an ordinary bottle 104 is transformed into a decorative bottle 100.



Inventors:
Churchill, Kenneth Brian (Monterey, CA, US)
Application Number:
11/696136
Publication Date:
10/09/2008
Filing Date:
04/03/2007
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
215/316, 215/246
International Classes:
B65D41/04
View Patent Images:
Related US Applications:



Primary Examiner:
KIRSCH, ANDREW THOMAS
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
LARIVIERE, GRUBMAN PC (MONTEREY, CA, US)
Claims:
We claim:

1. A method for creating a bottle closure assembly comprising: a bottle cap; and a bottle overcap coupled with said bottle cap.

2. The method of claim 1, wherein the bottle overcap is permanently coupled with said bottle cap.

3. The method of claim 1, wherein the bottle overcap is removably coupled with said bottle cap.

4. The method of claim 1, wherein the bottle overcap is coupled with the bottle cap by an interference fit.

5. The method of claim 1, wherein said bottle overcap is a heat-shrink material, and said bottle overcap and bottle cap are coupled by applying heat to the bottle overcap.

6. The method of claim 1, wherein a seal is coupled with the bottle closure assembly and a bottle.

7. The method of claim 1, wherein said bottle overcap is coupled with the bottle cap by an interlocking fit.

8. A method of claim 1, wherein the bottle overcap is coupled with said bottle cap by an adhesive material.

9. The method of claim 8, wherein said adhesive material is of a food grade quality.

10. The method of claim 8, wherein said adhesive is applied by an automated method.

11. The method of claim 8, wherein said adhesive is applied manually.

Description:

TECHNICAL FIELD

The present invention relates to a decorative bottle closure assembly, and more particularly to a method for coupling a decorative overcap to a bottle closure. The method for coupling the bottle closure assembly is particularly well suited for use in inexpensively creating distinctive bottles, in particular for the use of bottles containing liquids.

BACKGROUND ART

Current bottle closures are relatively form fitting to the opening of the bottle, often also referred to as a cap. Generally they are plastic and made purely for function to inhibit the loss of the contents in the bottle. Economically, the least expensive way to secure a bottle opening is to affix a form fitting cap.

In order to increase the attractiveness of the product to potential buyers and, therefore, increase the price of the product, decorative bottle caps are often used by sellers. These generally are larger than the form fitting cap and have some type of decorative element that attracts the consumer to buy them. The cost to manufacture decorative bottle caps is higher, and detailed work is involved in order to ensure that there is a secure fit. Further, safety regulations require tamper proof seals. Accordingly, there is a need to find a less expensive way to manufacture these types of decorative caps, without the increase of cost to the manufacturer.

DISCLOSURE OF INVENTION

The present invention addresses the above and other needs by providing a method for coupling a decorative overcap with a bottle closure. The solution offered in the present invention, is to provide a less expensive decorative bottle, by having a two-piece bottle closure assembly. The bottle closure assembly, consists of a decorative overcap coupled with a bottle closure. The decorative overcap can be manufactured without meeting specific specifications regarding tamper proof regulations, then coupled with a bottle closure in such a way as to meet regulations.

The overcap can be coupled in various ways. For example, but in no way limiting, some ways to attach the overcap to the bottle closure can be, with a type of adhesive as shown in FIG. 2 or connected by interlocking fit as shown in FIG. 3. Further, the overcap can be made from a material that allows for it to shrink or mold to the overcap when heat is applied. It can be coupled by way of an interference fit. Additionally, the overcap can be fixed to the bottle closure or removably affixed as contemplated in FIG. 3. The coupling method can be automated or manual.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF DRAWINGS

For fuller understanding of the present invention, reference is made to the accompanying drawings numbered below. Commonly used reference numbers identify the same or equivalent parts of the claimed invention throughout the several figures.

FIG. 1(a) depicts the overall appearance of the bottle closure assembly, in accordance with the present invention.

FIG. 1(b) depicts the separate pieces of the bottle closure assembly, in accordance with the present invention.

FIG. 2(a) depicts using adhesive for coupling the bottle closure assembly, by placing the adhesive on the cap, in accordance with the present invention.

FIG. 2(b) depicts using adhesive for coupling the bottle closure assembly, by placing the adhesive inside the overcap, in accordance with the present invention.

FIG. 3 depicts using an interlocking fit for coupling the bottle closure assembly, in accordance with the present invention.

FIG. 4 depicts coupling the overcap to a bottle that has been filled with the desired contents, in accordance with the present invention.

FIG. 5 depicts the overcap being coupled to the cap prior to filling the contents of the bottle, in accordance with the present invention.

FIG. 6 depicts the bottle closure assembly having seals attaching to the bottle, in accordance with the present invention.

FIG. 7 depicts exemplary decorative overcaps, in accordance with the present invention.

BEST MODE FOR CARRYING OUT THE INVENTION

The following description is of the best mode presently contemplated for carrying out the invention. This description is not to be taken in a limiting sense, but is made merely for the purpose of describing a preferred embodiment of the invention. The scope of the invention should be determined with reference to the claims.

FIG. 1(a) illustrates, the product made by the method of the present invention. The decorative overcap 102 is coupled with a bottle closure 103, transforming the ordinary bottle 104 into a decorative bottle 100.

FIG. 1(b) illustrates the separate pieces of the bottle closure assembly 101, which consists of a decorative overcap 102 coupled with a standard bottle cap 103. The overcap 102 is coupled in such a way as to prevent any type of slipping or disengagement from the cap 103, the coupling can encompass multiple variations, including the overcap 102 being connected with the bottle closure 103 or the overcap 102 being attached to the bottle closure 103.

FIG. 2(a) illustrates, using adhesive 105 for coupling the bottle closure assembly 101. A decorative overcap 102 is manufactured without any threads on the inside. The overcap 102 can then be coupled with the cap 103 by using adhesive. The cap 103 may or may not already be secured on the bottle 104, as further described in FIG. 4 and FIG. 5. An adhesive 105 is applied to the cap 103 and the overcap 102 is placed over the cap 103. Once the adhesive 105 has dried, the overcap 102 and cap 103 are coupled, creating a bottle closure assembly 101 that is fixed. This method can be done manually or it can be automated. It is envisioned that the type of adhesive for a bottle 104 containing consumable contents is of a food grade, in order to meet food and safety requirements. Any type of adhesive is contemplated, depending on the type of material used. For example, and in no way limiting, specific adhesive for polymer material may be used with water bottles.

FIG. 2(b) illustrates the adhesive 105 applied to the inside of the bottle overcap 102 and then the overcap 102 is placed over the cap 103, creating a bottle closure assembly 101 that is fixed.

FIG. 3 illustrates, where the cap 103 and overcap 102 have an interlocking fit. The overcap 102 has internal protrusion that grip the cap 103 which has threads for receiving the protrusions. This creates a bottle closure assembly 101 by way of an interlock fit. This method can be done manually or automated. Further, the bottle overcap 102 may be permanently fixed to the cap 103 or removably fixed to the cap 103.

FIG. 4 illustrates, where the overcap 102 can be coupled with the cap 103 in any of the ways described herein, after the cap 103 is secured on the bottle. Once the bottle 104 has been filled with the desired contents, for example water, a cap 103 can be securely attached to the bottle 104 that meets safety requirements. Then at a later time, the bottle overcap 102 can be coupled with the cap 103. This allows a producer to buy the bottles 104 off the shelf, and then the decorative overcap 102 can be customized to a specific order, perhaps employing various design elements into the overcap 102 as shown in FIG. 7, in order to make it unique to the customer.

FIG. 5 illustrates, where the overcap 102 can be coupled with the cap 103 in any of the ways described herein, prior to filling the contents of the bottle 104. After the bottle 104 is filled, the bottle closure assembly 101, can be placed on the bottle 104.

FIG. 6 depicts the bottle closure assembly having seals attaching to the bottle. The bottle closure assembly 101 may have various types of seals 106 attaching to the bottle 104, and can be used with any of the coupling methods herein. The seal 106 can be a seal that is affixed between the bottle closure assembly 101 and the bottle 104, for example a sticker that can be broken when the bottle closure assembly 101 is rotated to open or a plastic wrapping. The seal can serve many purposes, for example, it's utility can be to make the decorative bottle 100 tamper proof.

FIG. 7 illustrates exemplary designs for the decorative overcap 102.

The present invention further embodies coupling the cap 103 and overcap 102 by way of an interference fit, or also referred to as a press fit. The cap 103 can be connected with the overcap 102 by pushing the pieces together. This method can be done manually or automated.

The present invention further embodies coupling the cap 103 and overcap 102 by using a shrinking material for the overcap 102, for example a heat shrinking material. In this example, when heat is applied to the overcap 102 it shrinks, thereby coupling it to the cap 103. This method can be done manually or automated.

The present invention further embodies using an expanding material for the cap 103, such that it expands to couple with the overcap 102. This methods can be done manually or automated.

The present invention has been particularly shown and described with respect to certain preferred embodiments and features thereof. However, it should be readily apparent to those of ordinary skill in the art that various changes and modifications in form and detail may be made without departing from the spirit and scope of the inventions as set forth in the appended claims. The inventions illustratively disclosed herein may be practiced without any element which is not specifically disclosed herein.