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US2904810A - Ball-type applicator assembly - Google Patents

Ball-type applicator assembly Download PDF

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Publication number
US2904810A
US2904810A US67917357A US2904810A US 2904810 A US2904810 A US 2904810A US 67917357 A US67917357 A US 67917357A US 2904810 A US2904810 A US 2904810A
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Prior art keywords
ball
fitment
sealing
container
applicator
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Expired - Lifetime
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Richard B Dence
Wilbur A Schaich
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Owens-Illinois Inc
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Owens-Illinois Inc
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    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A45HAND OR TRAVELLING ARTICLES
    • A45DHAIRDRESSING OR SHAVING EQUIPMENT; MANICURING OR OTHER COSMETIC TREATMENT
    • A45D34/00Containers or accessories specially adapted for handling liquid toilet or cosmetic substances, e.g. perfumes
    • A45D34/04Appliances specially adapted for applying liquid, e.g. using roller or ball
    • A45D34/041Appliances specially adapted for applying liquid, e.g. using roller or ball using a roller, a disc or a ball

Description

Sept. 22, 1959 R. B. DENC m1. 2,904,810

BALL-TYPE APPLICATOR ARSSEMBLY Filed Aug. 20, 1957 1 N VENTORS /wawe ,4. .fah/a/ United States Patent G BALL-TYPE APPLICATOR ASSEMBLY Richard B. Dence, Toiedo, and Wilbur A, Schaich, Maumee, Ohio, assignors to Owens-Illinois Giass tlomp'any, acorporation of Ohio v Application August 20, 1957, Serial No. 679,173 Claims. 01. 15-1327 This invention relates to an improved ball-type applicator assembly particularly adaptable to the application of deodorants, perfumes, medicaments, and other like fluid substances to the skin or clothing.

The employment of ball-type applicators, particularly in the cosmetics field, is not new. In the past applicators of this type have generally embodied a plastic retaining fitment having a generally annular shape, within which the applicator ball is confined. The fitment is thus effective to mount the applicator ball over the dispe'nsing end of a container in such fashion that the ball may be utilized to transfer a thin film of the containers fluid contents when the container is inverted and the ball is rotated.

To prevent leakage and evaporation of the containers contents when the applicator is not being utilized, some prior applicator constructions have generally relied upon the provision of a sealing surface which may be squeezed or pinched into sealing engagement with the applicator ball, incident to lateral compression of the fitment. Due to the annular construction of the fitment, however, it inherently tends to resist such compression and, consequently, tends to crimp or bulge outwardly at various locations along the sealing surface. Obviously, such crimping or bulging is very undesirable, since the resultant tendency is to produce a discontinuity in the seal, accompanied by leakage and evaporation of the containers contents. Furthermore, due to such crimping and bulging, such a seal is extremely difi'icult to produce and maintain.

In other constructions, the fitment has been provided with a sealing surface underlying a lower segment of the ball in such manner that the ball may be depressed into sealing engagement with the fitment. However, in this type of construction, the pressure imposed upon the bail, as when it is being utilized for applicating purposes, tends to depress the ball toward such sealing engagement and thereby restrict or prevent the desired flow of fluid.

The applicants, in overcoming the above problems accompanying conventional ball-type applicators, have devised a novel applicator assembly embodying a unique structure, which functions to obviate the objectionable crimping or bulging incident to sealing the fitment with the surface of the applicator ball, and yet which operates to eifect a reliable seal between the fitment and the sur-.

face of the applicator ball when the fitment is not being utilized for applicating purposes. As a consequence of the unique structure devised by the applicants, the fitment, when a closure is attached 'to the dispensing end of the container, is brought into sealing engagement with the applicator ball and caused to resiliently distend and to produce a tensional sealing engagement extending uniformly and continuously-about a segment of the surface of the applicator ball. As a further consequence of the present invention this tensional sealing engagement between the fitment and the applicator ball can also be utilized to return the applicator ball and fitment to their ice 2 relative non-sealed applicating positions when the closure is removed from the container.

A particular object of this invention is to provide an improved ball-type applicator construction wherein the assembled retaining fitment is susceptible to limited axial movement between a dispensing position and a sealing position.

Another object of the present invention is to provide a ball retaining fitment for a ball applicator dispensing package having a resilient and flexible sealing portion which may be shifted into tensional sealing engagement with the surface of the applicator ball incident to the attachment of a closure to the container, and which, by virtue of such resilient and flexible properties, will Withdraw from such sealing engagement incident to the removal 'of the closure.

Another object of the present invention is the provision of an improved ball-type applicator assembly having the aforementioned charactersitic's, wherein the fitment is provided with resilient'spacing means operative to maintain the sealing surfaces of the fitment and the applicator ball in spaced relationship when the closure is removed from the container.

A further object of this invention is to provide a balltype applicator construction wherein the pressure imposed upon the applicator ball in the course of applying the contents of the container will have no appreciable effect upon the flow of the contents from the container.

The specific nature of this invention, as well as other objects and advantages thereof, will become apparent to those skilled in the art from the following detailed description, taken in conjunction with the annexed sheet of drawings on which, by way of example only, the preferred embodiments of this invention are illustrated.

On the drawings:

Fig. 1 is a vertical sectional view of a ball-type applicator assembly and closure attachment respectively assembled on the dispensing end of a container, and showing the closure in a position loosely attached to the container; I

Fig. 2 is a view similar to Fig. l, but illustrating the applicator assembly when the closure is tightly attached to the container; I

Fig. 3 is a plan view of the retaining fitment illustrated in Figs. 1 and 2, showing the fitment independently of the associated elements of the assembly;

Fig. 4 is a vertical sectional view of a modified form of a ball-type applicator assembly and closure attachment, shown assembled on the dispensing end of a container with the closure loosely attached;

Fig. 5 is a view similar to the modification shown in Fig. 4, but illustrating the assembly when the closure is in a tightened position on the container; and

Fig. 6 is a plan view of the retaining fitment shown in Figs. 4 and 5, disassociat'ed from the other parts of the assembly.

The general arrangement of the various members comprising the present invention is illustrated in Fig. 1, wherein there is illustrated a bottle 10 or other similar dispensing container, having a reduced diameter neck portion 10a mounting an annular fitment 12 in which there is loosely confined for universally rotatable movement a spherical applicator ball 11 which overlies and rests upon the mouth of the bottle. The relative positioning of the ball 11 within the fitment 12 is such that a segment of the balls surface protrudes axially outward from the fitment to permit direct contact between the ball and the surface to which the containers contents are intended to be transferred. Enclosing the assembled ball 11, fitment 12, and container 10, and aifordin'g protection thereto, thereis a hollow internally threaded closure 13, which is attachable over the neck portion 10a when C9 the applicator is not being utilized, and which may be readily removed when application of the containers con-- tents is desired. The closure 13 is provided internally with means adapted to cooperate with the assembled fitment 12 and ball 11 in such manner that, as the closure is attached to the neck portion 10a, the fitment will, in response to such attachment, shift axially downward into mutual sealing engagement with the ball 11, to thereby effectively prevent leakage or evaporation of the containers contents. In opposite manner, the fitment is designed to readily withdraw from sealing engagement with the ball as the closure is unloosened from the container, to thereby permit a smooth and uniform application of the containers contents immediately upon complete detachment of the closure.

Describing the invention in greater detail, the container 10 may be constructed in conventional manner from glass, plastic, metal, or other suitable material capable of retaining various types of fluid substances or cosmetic preparations such as, for example, deodorants, perfumes, or the like. The container neck portion 10a is provided with a discharge opening 1012, around the outer end edge of which there is defined a series of grooves or recesses 10d. The outer axial end of the neck portion 10a is provided with a radial retaining lip 100 immediately surrounding the discharge opening 10b; whereas, the inner axial end of the neck portion 10a merges with a larger diameter extenrally threaded portion 10c.

The applicator ball 11 with which the containers contents are applied is preferably of substantially rigid construction and of such size that its diameter measures in excess of that of the discharge opening 10b. Thus, the ball 11 may seat upon the rim of the discharge opening 1% with the grooves 10d providing fluid passages traversing or subtending such seat.

The retaining fitment 12 is fabricated from a resilient plastic material such as polyethylene or other resilient or elastomeric material having similar characteristics of pliability, flexibility and scalability, and defines an annular shaped structure having a top ball pocket portion 12a terminating in a sealing rim 12b of lesser diameter than the ball 11 and overlying said pocket portion. The lower or inner end 120 of the fitment 12 is shaped to cooperate with the exterior of the neck portion 10a in telescoping relationship to permit a limited degree of axial movement of the fitment relative to the container 10. Limiting the extent of such axial movement, particularly in a direction away from the container, there is an inwardly projecting rib 12d formed on the inner end of the fitment, which may be snapped over the container lip 10c. Thus, in effect, the rib 12d cooperates with the lip 100 to maintain the fitment 12 in assembled axially movable position on the container neck 143a. Additionally, the fitment 12 is formed with an outwardly projecting external shoulder or ledge 122, which is engageable with means formed on the interior of the closure 13.

The closure 13, which is preferably of relatively rigid construction, defines a conventional inverted cup-shaped configuration and is formed with a bottom recess 13a shaped to freely surround the applicating end of the fitment 12. Adjacent to the open end of the closure 13 and defined on the interior surface thereof, there is a threaded portion 13b providing threads for mating engagement with the threaded portion we of the container 10. Intermediate the threaded portion 13b and the bottom recess 13a, the closure defines downwardly facing means engageable with the ledge 122 of the fitment as the closure is threadably tightened onto the container, such means being in the form of an internal shoulder 130.

When, as shown in Fig. 2, the closure 13 is tightened on the container threads We, the shoulder 130 will engage the edge 12/: and axially shift the fitment 12 downward in telescoping relation over the neck of the container 10, until the inner end of the fitment 12 is compressed against the shoulder 10 on the bottle 10. The shoulder 10f thus limits the downward movement of the fitment 12 by serving as a stop, and additionally provides a surface against which the inner end of the fitment may be compressed in sealing relationship. As the fitment 12 is shifted in this manner, the sealing rim 12b will likewise be axially shifted and move into peripheral contact with an upper segment of the surface of the ball 11, and distend or stretch over the surface of the ball to produce a snug, tensional sealing engagement between the sealing rim and the ball. The tensional stress thereby developed in the resilient and distended sealing rim 12b causes it to conform snugly and very uniformly to the surface of the ball 11, and results in the formation of an extremely reliable seal capable of preventing leakage or evaporation of the containers contents throughout repeated uses of the applicator, and for extended periods of time.

In reverse manner, when the closure 13 is entirely or partially removed from the container 10, as illustrated in Fig. 1, the fitment 12 will shift axially outward as a consequence of the tensional stress of the resilient sealing rim 12b, which causes the fitment to wedge or snap upwardly and away from the surface of the ball 11 and attain an unstressed position gravitationally resting upon the surface of the ball. When the container 10 is inverted for applicating purposes, the loose relative positioning of the fitment 12 on the neck portion 10a will permit the fitment, together with the applicator ball 11, to shift axially outward a distance corresponding to the spacing between the fitment rib 12d and the container lip 101:. However, when the ball 11 is brought into rolling contact with the skin or other surface to which application of the containers contents is desired, such contact will depress the ball relative to the sealing rim 12b and permit the contents of the container 10 to be readily transferred by the ball 11 Without objectionable interference with or restriction of the fluid flow by the sealing rim. Further in this respect, the grooves 10d formed around the discharge opening 10b permit a free flow of fluid to pass from the container onto the surface of the ball 11, irrespective of the amount of applicating pressure imposed upon the ball.

In the modification of this invention illustrated in Figs. 4-6, the annular fitment 14 is provided with a sealing rim 14a similar to that shown in the embodiment in Figs. 1-3. Additionally, a plurality of spaced resilient protuberances or tabs 1% are formed contiguously with the sealing rim 14a which extend interiorally beyond the sealing surface 140 of said rim. Although three such tabs 1411 are shown in Fig. 6, obviously, a greater or lesser number may be used. As best shown in Fig. 4, when the closure 13 is partially removed from the container, the tabs 1412 will maintain the sealing rim 14a slightly spaced from the surface of the ball 11 in centered relationship. Additionally, as illustrated, there is an inwardly projecting resilient rib 14d formed on the lower axial end of the fitment and arranged for snap-fit engagement over the lip of the container. The rib 14d and the tabs 14b are preferably interrelated in axial spacing so that the rib 14d lightly contacts the underside of the lip 10c and the tabs 14b lightly contact the surface of the applicator ball 11 to prevent the ball from shifting within the fitment when the closure 13 is removed and when the container is inverted or otherwise shifted or manipulated between various positions. Thus, the tabs 14b and the rib 14d thereby permit the retaining fitment 14 to be positioned in relative snug relationship with the ball, as contrasted with the loose confinement of the ball 11 by the fitment 12 in the first described embodiment, and yet permit a smooth and uniform transfer of the containers contents when the ball is rotated for applicating purposes. As illustrated in Fig. 5, the resilient properties of the tabs 14b permit them to flex upwardly when drawn into forcible engagement with the surface of the ball 11, incident to the tightening of the closure 13 onto the container 10, and the sealing surface 140 is thereby permitted to be drawn axially into unobstructed sealing engagement with the surface of the ball 11 in a manner similar to the embodiment described in Figs. l3.

Irrespective of which of the above embodiments is employed, it will be apparent that the construction of the applicator assembly is such that the retaining fitment may be axially shifted into and out of sealing engagement with the applicator ball 11 in direct response to the attachment and detachment of the closure 13 and the container. Likewise, the seal obtained between the retaining fitment and the applicator ball is occasioned by the distension of the sealing rim as it is forced downward over the surface of the applicator ball and, thus, there is produced a tensional sealing engagement between the fitment and the applicator ball which results in a very effective and highly reliable seal capable of preventing leakage or evaporation of the containers contents for long periods of time, and which is substantially unaffected by repeated attachment and removal of the closure. Further, the structure is characterized by simplicity in design, and permits a rapid and uniform application of the containers contents by the applicator ball when the cap is removed.

It will, of course, be understood that various details of construction may be modified through a wide range without departing from the principles of this invention and, therefore, it is not the purpose to limit the patent granted hereon otherwise than necessitated by the scope of the appended claims.

We claim:

1. A ball applicator package comprising a container having a neck portion and external fastening means axially spaced from the mouth thereof, an applicating ball overlying the mouth of said neck portion, an annular retaining fitment of resilient elastomeric material surrounding said ball, means mounting said fitment on said neck portion and permitting limited axial movement of said fitment relative to said neck portion, the outer axial end of said fitment defining an annular distensible sealing surface sealingly engageable with said ball when said fitment is shifted axially toward said container, and means cooperating with said neck fastening means for selectively axially shifting said fitment to bring said annular sealing surface into distended tensional sealing engagement with said ball, said axial shifting of said fitment being of sufiicient extent to produce a tensional stress in said sealing surface of suflicient magnitude to snap said fitment axially away from sealing engagement with said ball upon removal of said last mentioned means from said fastening means.

2. A ball applicator package comprising a container having a neck portion and external threads axially spaced from the mouth thereof, a radial retaining shoulder on said neck portion axially outwardly of said neck threads, an applicating ball overlying the mouth of said neck portion, an annular retaining fitment of resilient elastomeric material surrounding said ball, an internally projecting rib on one axial end of said fitment snapped over said retaining shoulder and surrounding said neck portion in axially slidable relationship, thereby retaining said fitment on said container, the other axial end of said fitment defining a distensible annular sealing surface sealingly engageable with said ball when said fitment is shifted axially toward said container, and means cooperating with said external threads for selectively axially shifting said fitment to bring said annular sealing surface into distended tensional sealing engagement with said ball, said axial shifting of said fitment being of sufiicient extent to produce a tensional stress in said sealing surface of sufficient magnitude to snap said fitment axially away from sealing engagement with said ball upon removal of said last mentioned means from said external threads.

3. A ball applicator package comprising a container having a neck portion and external threads axially spaced from the mouth thereof, a radial retaining shoulder on said neck portion axially outwardly of said neck threads, an applicating bail overlying the mouth of said neck portion, an annular retaining fitment of resilient elastomeric material surrounding said ball, an internally projecting rib on one axial end of said fitment snapped over said retaining shoulder and engaging said neck portion in axially slidable relationship, thereby retaining said fitment on said container, the other axial end of said fitment defining a distensible annular sealing surface sealingly engageable with said ball when said fitment is shifted axially toward said container, a cup-shaped internally threaded closure constructed and arranged to surround said fitment and engage said neck threads, and means on said closure engageable with said fitment to axially shift said fitment to bring said annular sealing surface into distended tensional sealing engagement with said ball, said axial shifting of said fitment being of suificient extent to produce a tensional stress in said sealing surface of sufiicient magnitude to snap said fitment axially away from sealing engagement with said ball upon removal of said last mentioned means from said external threads.

4. A ball applicator package comprising a container having a neck portion having external fastening means axially spaced from the mouth thereof, an applicating ball overlying the mouth of said neck portion, an annular retaining fitment of resilient elastomeric material surrounding said ball, means mounting said fiment on said neck portion and permitting limited axial movement of said fitment relative to said neck portion, the outer axial end of said fiment defining an annular sealing surface, said retaining fitment having at least one internally projecting flexible protuberance formed contiguously with said sealing surface, said protuberance and said sealing surface being successively engageable with said ball when said fitment is shifted axially toward said container, and means cooperating with said fastening means for selectively axially shifting said fitment toward said container, thereby flexing said protuberance and bringing said sealing surface into sealing engagement with said ball.

5. A ball applicator package comprising a container having a neck portion and external threads axially spaced from the mouth thereof, an applicating ball overlying the mouth of said neck portion, an annular retaining fitment of resilient elastomeric material surrounding said ball, means mounting said fitment on said neck portion and permitting limited axial movement of said fitment relative to said neck portion, the outer axial end of said fitment defining an annular sealing surface and having a plurality of spaced flexible protuberances extending inwardly beyond said sealing surface and centering said ball in spaced relationship with said sealing surface, said protuberances and said sealing surface being successively engageable with said ball when said fitment is shifted axially toward said container, and means cooperating with said neck threads for selectively axially shifting said fitment toward said container, thereby flexing said protuberances and bringing said sealing surface into sealing engagement with said ball.

References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,641,788 Sudbeaz June 16, 1953 2,749,566 Thomas June 12, 1956 FOREIGN PATENTS 759,683 France Nov. 23, 1933

US2904810A 1957-08-20 1957-08-20 Ball-type applicator assembly Expired - Lifetime US2904810A (en)

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Cited By (5)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US3083397A (en) * 1961-03-09 1963-04-02 Bristol Myers Co Roller applicator supporting means
US3355241A (en) * 1965-10-18 1967-11-28 Anchor Hocking Glass Corp Applicator package
US5051016A (en) * 1988-10-04 1991-09-24 Chesebrough-Pond's Usa Co., Division Of Conopco, Inc. Deodorant antiperspirant cap activated wide-roll-on
US5128138A (en) * 1989-07-21 1992-07-07 Izhak Blank Estradiol compositions and methods for topical application
US5232703A (en) * 1989-07-21 1993-08-03 Izhak Blank Estradiol compositions and methods for topical application

Citations (3)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
FR759683A (en) * 1933-08-16 1934-02-07 Massage device
US2641788A (en) * 1950-04-22 1953-06-16 Sudbeaz Steve Combined cap and dispenser for perfume bottles
US2749566A (en) * 1952-09-04 1956-06-12 Bristol Myers Co Dispenser

Patent Citations (3)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
FR759683A (en) * 1933-08-16 1934-02-07 Massage device
US2641788A (en) * 1950-04-22 1953-06-16 Sudbeaz Steve Combined cap and dispenser for perfume bottles
US2749566A (en) * 1952-09-04 1956-06-12 Bristol Myers Co Dispenser

Cited By (5)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US3083397A (en) * 1961-03-09 1963-04-02 Bristol Myers Co Roller applicator supporting means
US3355241A (en) * 1965-10-18 1967-11-28 Anchor Hocking Glass Corp Applicator package
US5051016A (en) * 1988-10-04 1991-09-24 Chesebrough-Pond's Usa Co., Division Of Conopco, Inc. Deodorant antiperspirant cap activated wide-roll-on
US5128138A (en) * 1989-07-21 1992-07-07 Izhak Blank Estradiol compositions and methods for topical application
US5232703A (en) * 1989-07-21 1993-08-03 Izhak Blank Estradiol compositions and methods for topical application

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