US3206849A - Can opener - Google Patents

Can opener Download PDF

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US3206849A
US3206849A US213997A US21399762A US3206849A US 3206849 A US3206849 A US 3206849A US 213997 A US213997 A US 213997A US 21399762 A US21399762 A US 21399762A US 3206849 A US3206849 A US 3206849A
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Prior art keywords
cutter
rim
opener
cover
plane
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Expired - Lifetime
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US213997A
Inventor
Carleton S Marden
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William J J Gordon
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    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B67OPENING, CLOSING OR CLEANING BOTTLES, JARS OR SIMILAR CONTAINERS; LIQUID HANDLING
    • B67BAPPLYING CLOSURE MEMBERS TO BOTTLES JARS, OR SIMILAR CONTAINERS; OPENING CLOSED CONTAINERS
    • B67B7/00Hand- or power-operated devices for opening closed containers
    • B67B7/30Hand-operated cutting devices
    • B67B7/36Hand-operated cutting devices adapted to be mounted on walls

Description

P 1965 c. s. MARDEN 3,206,849
CAN OPENER Filed Aug. 1, 1962 3 Sheets-Sheet 1 Fl 2 2 IZVENTOR.
ATTOR NEYS Sept. 21, 1965 c. s. MARDEN CAN OPENER 3 Sheets-Sheet 2 Filed Aug. 1. 1962 R m m V m ATTORNEYS United States Patent 3,206,849 CAN OPENER Carleton S. Marden, Cambridge, Mass., assignor, by direct and mesne assignments, of one-half to William J. J. Gordon, Cambridge, Mass.
Filed Aug. 1, 1962, Ser. No. 213,997 Claims. (Cl. 308.5)
The present invention relates generally to can openers, and more particularly to a device for severing the cover from a can by cutting along the inner wall of a can rim in a plane substantially parallel t the cover.
The most common method for opening a can is to rotate a circular cutting blade which is downwardly inclined about the annular side of the rim to sever the flat circular portion of the cover from the rim. This method is objectionable for several reasons. First the cutting blade projects downwardly and therefore comes into contact with the cans contents which may result in contamination or objectionable odor or taste. Particles of such contents often remain upon the cutting blade after a can has been opened. Such contents, particularly when it is food, cause the blade to become covered with bacteria, decay or mold. Such deleterious substances are then brought into contact with the contents of each successive can, unless the blade had been thoroughly cleaned and sterilized after each use. Second, the conventional method of opening a can leaves a severed cover with a sharp, generally ragged edge, which is dangerous to handle and which may readily fall into the contents of the can, with the results that the contents are further contaminated by the fingers and by any harmful substances on the exterior surface of the cover.
In an effort to avoid these and other problems, several devices have been made which cut an outer wall of the can rim. Such devices do alleviate many of the previous problems, however, the outer cut edge of the can presents a serious hazard. The cut edge is normally sharp and in some cases jagged. Thus, in normal handling, users are apt to cut or scratch their hands on the outer edges.
Therefore, it is an important object of this invention to provide a can opener which may be used to open cans without bringing the cutting blade into contact with the contents.
Another object of the invention is to provide a can opener in which the cover may be removed easily without dropping into the can.
Another object of the invention is to provide a can opener which is simple in construction and may be manufactured at a minimum cost while insuring adequate precision and dependable action in use.
A further object of this invention is to provide a can opener in accordance with the preceding objects which is capable of opening varying conventional sized cans with a minimum of adjustment.
According to the invention, the can opener has an elongated main support frame with a can gripping means mounted for rotation in a first plane and adapted to grip an outside wall of a can rim. An adjustable cutter assembly means is mounted on the frame and carries a cutter edge which lies in and is mounted for reciprocation in a second plane preferably normal to the first plane, The cutter edge is adapted to lie substantially parallel to a can cover when the can is properly positioned in the can opener for opening. Preferably the cutter edge and gripping means coact to cut the inner wall of the rim and simultaneously flare the rim outwardly. The outward flare prevents the can cover from tending to drop into the can after cutting and allows easy removal of the cover from the can by a magnet carried by the can opener.
Other features of the invention reside in certain details of construction, modes of operation and arrangements of the parts which will be more clearly understood with reference to the following description of a preferred embodiment thereof, having reference to the appended drawings illustrating the same, in which:
FIG. 1 is a right side elevation of a preferred embodiment of the invention;
FIG. 2 is a left side elevation of the same embodiment;
FIG. 3 is a front elevation thereof;
FIG. 4 is a top plan view thereof;
FIG. 5 is a cross-sectional View taken along the line 55 of FIG. 4; and,
FIG. 6 is a cross-sectional view taken along line 66 of FIG. 2.
A preferred embodiment of the invention is illustrated and designated generally at 10 in FIG. 1. The can opener 10 has a main support frame 28 carrying a crank arm 13 and perpendicularly mounted adjustable cutter assembly 39 (FIG. 3).
The main support frame preferably comprises a rectangular cross-section, elongated bar 28 which is adapted to be mounted on a wall or other support structure at end 30. For various commercial embodiments it may be varied in shape, or provided with various attaching means.
A cylindrical crank shaft 14 is journaled in the bar 28 preferably perpendicular to the axis of the bar. The crank arm 13 is attached t a first end of crank shaft 14 at a ferruled hollow end portion 62 by means of a conventional set screw 50. The crank arm 13 has a pivotably mounted handle 11 carried by pivot pin 12 from the crank arm. A second end of the crank shaft 14 is affixed to a can gripping bevel gear or wheel, 42. Preferably two bearing rings 43 are positioned between the bevel gear 42 and the adjacent side of support bar 28 and provide a wear-resistant, free sliding surface allowing rotation of the bevel gear 42 in a vertical plane. The bevel gear 42 has a plurality of gripping teeth extending about the perimeter of the gear forming a friction engaging surface 63 inclined at an angle of approximately 45 degrees to a vertical plane. The particular angle of inclination may be varied as desired however, for most conventional cans an angle of close to 45 is desired. In some cases the surface 63 may be rounded in an arcuate form.
Preferably a right angled positioning bracket 15 having a horizontal flange 16 and a vertical flange 17 is aflixed to an undersurface of the support bar 28. Flange 17 positions the side wall of a can placed in the can opener in vertical tangential alignment with a plane slightly displaced parallelly from the planar end of the bevel gear 42 thus preventing jamming of rotation of the bevel gear by the can sidewall.
An upper, flat, preferably generally rectangular block 19 is affixed to the main support bar 28 by conventional means such as screws 44. In some embodiments, block 19 may be integral with bar 28. Portions of the upper block 19 and support bar 28 are cutout to form channel 18 which is preferably rectangular in cross-section. Preferably the channel 18 has a central axis in parallel alignment with a central axis of the crank shaft 14 and perpendicular to the axis of the bar 28. A pin 60 is prefer ably mounted perpendicular to the flange 17 of the positioning bracket 15 on the main support 28 and coacts with the positioning bracket to position a can in the can opener by providing a top stop for the upper end of the can placed in the opener.
A reciprocally mounted sliding cutter assembly 39 is positioned with an end in the channel 18. The cutter assembly 39 preferably comprises a substantially rectangular cutter bar 26 having an outer rectangular perimeter slightly smaller than channel 18, thereby allowing the cutter bar to easily slide within and be supported by the channel.
A slot 29 extends perpendicular to the axis of a rectangular bar 26 along a top surface thereof.
An adjustment cutter handle 22 is linked to the cutter bar 26 by means of a cylindrical shaft 66 passing through a vertically aligned bore within the upper block 19 and having an aflixed eccentrically mounted guide pin 25 at a lower end. A collar 67 firmly affixes the shaft 66 to the cutter handle 22 and aids in supporting the shaft 66 in its vertical position. Vertically extending forward and rear stop pins 21 and are preferably respectively mounted on upper block 19 and support bar 28 and provide stops for the adjustment handle 22 allowing 180 rotation of the handle. Rotation of the handle 22 in a clockwise direction causes guide pin 25 to exert force on side walls of slot 29 and slide the cutter bar 26 towards the support bar 28.
Preferably, the adjustment handle 22, its associated shaft 67 and guide pin 25 can be removed by merely lifting out of the circular slot in the upper block 19. Removal of these elements allows removal of the cutter assembly from the main support frame bar 28 for cleaning or other purposes.
A magnet 27 is preferably firmly positioned within a corresponding cutout portion of the cutter bar 26 and is adapted to attract and retain a cover of a can placed in the can opener, both before and after the cutting operation.
With particular reference now to FIGS. 5 and 6, a cutter subassembly 31 comprises a cylindrical cutter shaft 32, preferably having a central axis perpendicular to and in the same vertical plane as the central axis of shaft 14, is slidably mounted for rotation within a corresponding bore in the cutter bar 26. A circular cutter wheel 36 is afiixed adjacent the lower end of shaft 32 and preferably has a horizontally extending circular sliding surface 38 mounted within a corresponding disc-shaped cutout portion 67 on a lower surface of bar 26. The cutout portion 67 acts as a bearing surface during the cutting action of the cutter wheel. A lower peripheral circular or annular cutter edge 37 extends about the peripheral edge of the wheel 36 and is separated from surface 38 by an annular channel having a generally U-shaped cross-section. The cutting edge 37 is adapted to rotate in a plane perpendicular to the rotational plane of the bevel gear 42 and allows cutting of a can cover from a can body along a plane parallel to the can cover as will be more fully described.
The cutter shaft 32 firmly locks the cutter wheel in the position shown in FIG. 5 by means of a locking collar 33 affixed to the shaft by a set screw 34 and a locking slide ring 35. The slide ring 35 overlies the upper block 19 when the guide pin 25 is positioned within the slot 29. In this position the shaft 32 slides within a U-shaped notch 69 (FIGS. 2, 4 and 5), provided in the upper block 19 upon rotation of the handle 22. It is a feature of this invention that when the parts are disassembled the shaft 32 may be slid downwardly and lowered with respect to cutter bar 26 thereby fully exposing the cutter wheel 36 for cleaning or sharpening as desired.
Preferably, the magnet 27 is positioned on the cutter bar 26 having a lower surface just below the surface of the cutter wheel 36 to space the can cover from the cutter wheel 36 so that the blade will engage the proper portion -of the can edge when the can cover is being cut.
The simultaneous flaring and cutting action of the cutter wheel and bevel gear is an outstanding feature of this invention. The vertical planar mounting of the bevel gear allows the cutter edge 37 to be forced against the can rim to outwardly flare the rim against the angled toothed surface of the bevel gear and simultaneously cutting the inner can wall as best seen in FIG. 6. The outward flaring of the rim is desirable to allow ease of removal of the separated cover from the can by merely applying upwardly directed force as by means of magnet 27. A cut line 69A may be formed in a plane substantially parallel to the cover and spaced well above the flat cover and preferably intermediate the flat cover and the uppermost edge of the can rim. The separated cover has a flared lip which tends to prevent dropping of the cover into the can.
The particular dimension of parts may vary considerably in accordance with standard commercial practices. In the preferred embodiment frame 28 has an overall length of 7 /2 inches, while cutter bar 26 is 6 inches long. Cutter wheel 36 has a diameter of 2 to /2" and preferably 1 inch, and bevel gear 42 has a diameter of 2" to /2 and preferably inch. The cutter edge 37 is mounted to move in a horizontal plane a distance of 1" to A4 and preferably of an inch to its closed position with its nearest point to the bevel gear lying on or beyond a vertical plane passing through the toothed surface 63 of the bevel gear as seen in FIG. 6. These dimensions have been found to provide a highly compact opener.
With reference now to FIGS. 5 and 6, the operation of a can opener of this invention will be described. FIG. 5 shows the open position of the can opener with the cutter wheel 36 spaced from the vertical plane of the bevel gear 42. The adjustment handle 22 is adjacent rear stop pin 20. A can is placed in the can opener 10 by guiding the can against positioning bracket flange 1'7 and guide pin 60 with the cutting edge 37 within the rim of the can and magnet 27 attracting the can cover. The can to be opened may be any conventional can such as steel can shown at 50 in FIG. 6, having a substantially planar cover 51, side cylindrical body wall 56 and a conventional upright rolled over rim 53 having an inner rim wall 54 and an outer rim Wall 55.
In most cases the cam is placed in the opener with the inner rim wall 54 adjacent the cutter wheel 36 although it is also possible to guide the can with the outer rim wall 55 adjacent the teeth 63 of the bevel gear 42. Subsequently the adjustment handle 22 is rotated in a clockwise direction until cutting edge 37 contacts the inner rim wall 54 and compresses the rim 53 between the cutter edge 37 and the teeth of bevel gear 42. The compression action is completed by rotational movement of handle 22 about an arc of degrees.
When a cam 50 is clamped between the bevel gear 42 and the cutting edge 37, the edge 37 bites into and cuts through the inner wall 50 at a point on the rim and above the contents containing portion of the cam as best shown in FIG. 6, above the planar surface of cover 51. Simultaneously the teeth 63 dig into the normally soft metal of the outer rim wall 55 and the rim is flared outwardly against the angled toothed surface of the bevel gear. The crank arm 13 is then rotated causing the bevel gear to rotate and turn the rim 53 through 360 of rotation. Several turns of the crank 13 may be required depending upon the diameter of the bevel gear 42 and the size of the can.
After complete cutting is accomplished the cover 51 is automatically removably afiixed to magnet 27 and handle 22 is rotated to its .original position to release the severed can rim from the opener.
Although a specific preferred embodiment of the invention has been described, several modifications are possible. For example, the bevel gear 42 may be motor driven. The adjustment of the cutter assembly with relation to the frame may be varied or mechanized.
Since it is evident that those skilled in the art may now make numerous modifications and departures from the specific embodiment described, the invention is to be construed as limited only by the spirit and scope of the appended claims.
What is claimed is:
1. A can opener for cutting a can cover from a can body, said can opener comprising,
a main support means having can gripping means mounted thereon for rotation in a first plane and adapted to grip an outside wall of a can rim,
an adjustable cutter means comprising a cutter edge mounted for reciprocation in a second plane substantially perpendicular to said first plane,
said second plane lying substantially parallel to a can cover held in said opener whereby said cutter edge may be reciprocated into position for contacting and cutting an inner wall of said can rim while said can gripping means contacts an outer wall of said can rim thereby clamping said can rim between said cutter wheel and said cam gripping means, and
means for rotating said can gripping means.
2. A can opener for cutting a can cover from a can body, said can opener comprising,
a main support means having a beveled can gripping means mounted thereon for rotation in a first plane and adapted to grip an outside wall of a can rim,
an adjustable cutter means comprising a cutter wheel mounted for reciprocation and rotation in a second plane substantially perpendicular to said first plane,
said second plane lying substantially parallel to a can cover held in said opener whereby said cutter wheel may be reciprocated into position for contacting and cutting an inner wall of said can rim while said can gripping means contacts an outer wall of said can rim thereby clamping and outwardly flaring said can rim between said cutter wheel and said can gripping means, and,
means for rotating said can gripping means and said cutter wheel, said last mentioned means comprising a shaft affixed to said cutter wheel and a second shaft afiixed to said can gripping means.
3. A can opener adapted to cut an inner side wall of a conventional can rim to separate a substantially flat can cover from the can body without contact of any part of the can opener elements with the contents of said can,
said can opener comprising an elongated mounting frame, a beveled gripping wheel rotatably mounted on said frame for gripping an outer wall of said cam rim,
said gripping wheel being mounted for rotation in a substantially vertical plane,
a cutter assembly means slidably mounted on said frame with adjustment means on said frame for reciprocally sliding said cutter assembly towards and away from said frame,
a cutter subassembly having a substantially horizontal cutter wheel rotatably mounted on said cutter assembly for reciprocable sliding therewith,
a magnet mounted on said opener and adapted to attract and contact said can cover,
means for engaging said cutter wheel and said gripping wheel with said can rim positioned and locked therebetween,
whereby said rim is flared outwardly and said cutter wheel bites into and through an inner side wall of said rim, and,
means for rotating said cutter wheel and for causing said cutter wheel to completely sever said cover from said can body as said rotating means rotates said gripping wheel, cutter Wheel and can rim, said last mentioned means comprising a shaft affixed to said cutter wheel and a second shaft affixed to said gripping wheel.
4. In a can opener for separating a substantially flat can cover from a cylindrical can body,
a cutter wheel having a substantially horizontal cutter edge mounted for rotation about a substantially vertical shaft,
said cutter wheel lying partially within a corresponding cutout portion of a supporting bar,
said shaft passing through said bar and extending thereabove,
means engaged with said shaft for normally preventing axial movement of said shaft and for allowing axial movement of said shaft at selected times, said last 6 mentioned means comprising a notched block surrounding a portion of said shaft and providing plural arms which are disengaged from said shaft at said selected times.
5. In a can opener for cutting a substantially flat can cover from a cylindrical can body by cutting an inner wall of an upstanding rim of said can body along a cuting line substantially parallel to said can cover,
an elongated frame member having a beveled gripping wheel mounted for rotation thereon in a substantially horizontal plane,
a cutter assembly slidably mounted in a transverse groove in said frame,
said cutter assembly having a rotatable cutter wheel with a cutter edge mounted for reciprocal movement towards and away from said gripping wheel in a plane substantially perpendicular to the plane of said gripping wheel,
a transverse slot extending across a surface of said cutter assembly substantially perpendicular to said transverse groove,
an adjustment shaft slidably mounted above said frame member and adapted to rotate through an arc of degrees,
means on a lower portion of said shaft engaging said slot for actuating said cutter assembly upon rotation of said shaft into a first position where said cutter edge and said gripping wheel are widely spaced to a second position wherein said cutter edge and said gripping wheel are relatively close together and coact to simultaneously outwardly flare said upstanding can rim and cut said inner rim wall.
6. A can opener adapted to cut an inner side wall of a conventional can rim to separate a substantially flat can cover from the can body,
said can opener comprising an elongated mounting frame having a horizontally extending axis and a transversely extending channel,
a bevel gear having a circularly arranged toothed surface,
said bevel gear adapted to rotate in a substantially vertical plane and being mounted on a first side of said frame by a horizontally extending crank shaft substantially perpendicular to said frame axis,
an elongated cutter bar slidably mounted in said channel for reciprocal movement in a horizontal plane along an axis thereof perpendicular to said frame axis,
a vertically extending shaft mounted for rotation about its axis on said cutter bar and carrying a cutter wheel at a lower end thereof a portion of said cutter wheel comprising a sliding surface bearing against a circular cutout wall of said cutter bar,
a lower portion of said cutter wheel comprising a circular horizontal cutter edge adapted to coact with said bevel gear to clamp and cut said inner rim while simultaneously outwardly flaring said can rim,
said cutter shaft and said bevel gear crank shaft lying in a substantially vertically extending plane,
a magnet mounted on said cutter bar adjacent said outter wheel and adapted to attract and hold said can cover,
means on said frame for reciprocating said cutter bar perpendicular to said frame,
can positioning means extending downwardly of said frame for positioning said can body adjacent a vertical plane spaced from the plane of said bevel gear.
7. In a can opener, means for severing one end of a can along a line on the inner wall of the can rim comprising a pair of wheels,
means mounting said wheels for rotation on coplanar and mutually perpendicular axis,
one of said wheels having a cutting edge and the other a frictional engaging surface,
and means for relative reciprocal movement of at least one of said wheels.
8. A can opener as set forth in claim 7, having means for rotating one of said wheels.
9. A can opener as set forth in claim 7, wherein said cutting edge comprises an annular edge defined on at least one side by an annular channel having a U-shaped cross section.
10. A can opener as set forth in claim 7 wherein said wheel having a frictional engaging surface comprises a means for allowing outward flaring of a can rim positioned in said can opener.
References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS 0 WILLLAM FELDMAN, Primary Examiner.
EDWARD V. BENHAM, M. HENSON WOOD, JR.,
Examiners.

Claims (1)

1. A CAN OPENER FOR CUTTING A CAN COVER FROM A CAN BODY, SAID CAN OPENER COMPRISING, A MAIN SUPPORT MEANS HAVING CAN GRIPPING MEANS MOUNTED THEREON FOR ROTATION IN A FIRST PLANE AND ADAPTED TO GRIP AN OUTSIDE WALL OF A CAN RIM, AN ADJUSTABLE CUTTER MEANS COMPRISING A CUTTER EDGE MOUNTED FOR RECIPRICATION IN A SECOND PLANE SUBSTANTIALLY PERPENDICULAR TO SAID FIRST PLANE, SAID SECOND PLANE LYING SUBSTANTIALLY PARALLEL TO A CAN COVER HELD IN SAID OPENER WHEREBY SAID CUTTER EDGE MAY BE RECIPRICATED INTO POSITION FOR CONTACTING AND CUTTING AN INNER WALL OF SAID CAN RIM WHILE SAID CAN GRIPPING MEANS CONTACTS AN OUTER WALL OF SAID CAN RIM THEREBY CLAMPING SAID CAN RIM BETWEEN SAID CUTTER WHEEL AND SAID CAM GRIPPING MEANS, AND MEANS FOR ROTATING SAID CAN GRIPPING MEANS.
US213997A 1962-08-01 1962-08-01 Can opener Expired - Lifetime US3206849A (en)

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Cited By (1)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US3510941A (en) * 1967-03-23 1970-05-12 Metal Box Co Ltd Can openers

Citations (5)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US1935680A (en) * 1932-02-20 1933-11-21 Wolforsdorf Hans Von Can opener
US2547258A (en) * 1947-06-02 1951-04-03 Minerva Hennings Craig Can opener
US2556766A (en) * 1948-01-29 1951-06-12 Mathieu Joseph Method and apparatus for opening and reflanging cans
US2614320A (en) * 1949-05-09 1952-10-21 Homer R Rosenberry Material cutting device
US2886887A (en) * 1958-02-26 1959-05-19 William M Krist Metal barrel or drum top cutter

Patent Citations (5)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US1935680A (en) * 1932-02-20 1933-11-21 Wolforsdorf Hans Von Can opener
US2547258A (en) * 1947-06-02 1951-04-03 Minerva Hennings Craig Can opener
US2556766A (en) * 1948-01-29 1951-06-12 Mathieu Joseph Method and apparatus for opening and reflanging cans
US2614320A (en) * 1949-05-09 1952-10-21 Homer R Rosenberry Material cutting device
US2886887A (en) * 1958-02-26 1959-05-19 William M Krist Metal barrel or drum top cutter

Cited By (1)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US3510941A (en) * 1967-03-23 1970-05-12 Metal Box Co Ltd Can openers

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