WO1997041762A1 - Tongs - Google Patents

Tongs Download PDF

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Publication number
WO1997041762A1
WO1997041762A1 PCT/GB1997/001206 GB9701206W WO9741762A1 WO 1997041762 A1 WO1997041762 A1 WO 1997041762A1 GB 9701206 W GB9701206 W GB 9701206W WO 9741762 A1 WO9741762 A1 WO 9741762A1
Authority
WO
Grant status
Application
Patent type
Prior art keywords
arms
pair
arm
connector
characterised
Prior art date
Application number
PCT/GB1997/001206
Other languages
French (fr)
Inventor
Stuart Charles Aiken
Original Assignee
Stuart Charles Aiken
Priority date (The priority date is an assumption and is not a legal conclusion. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation as to the accuracy of the date listed.)
Filing date
Publication date

Links

Classifications

    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A47FURNITURE; DOMESTIC ARTICLES OR APPLIANCES; COFFEE MILLS; SPICE MILLS; SUCTION CLEANERS IN GENERAL
    • A47GHOUSEHOLD OR TABLE EQUIPMENT
    • A47G21/00Table-ware
    • A47G21/10Sugar tongs; Asparagus tongs; Other food tongs
    • A47G21/103Chop-sticks

Abstract

A pair of tongs, particularly for use with food, comprises two separate elongate arms or blades (10, 20, 112, 114), at least one of the arms being able to flex longitudinally, characterised in that the arms (10, 10B, 112A, 114A) have means (11, 12A, 12B, 21A, 21B, 116) adjacent one of their respective ends (10A, 10B, 112A, 114A) whereby they may be coupled together with the arms (10, 20, 112, 114) extending along opposed sides of a 'V' from the region of coupling and whereby the open end of the 'V' may be closed by finger pressure on the outside of the arms (10, 20, 112, 114).

Description

TONGS

This invention relates to tongs and particularly, although not exclusively, to tongs intended for use with food.

Particularly in the light of the seemingly ever-increasing expansion of fast food outlets, including takeaway outlets, a need is perceived for a simple, inexpensive yet practical means by which the items of food may be consumed. Currently available means, e.g. plastics cutlery or throw away wooden forks are far from ideal and are either relatively expensive or not very efficient for the purpose intended.

It is an object of the invention, therefore, to provide an improved utensil suitable for use with, and particularly consumption of, food.

Accordingly in one aspect the invention provides a pair of tongs, the tongs comprising two separate elongate arms or blades, at least one of the blades being able to flex longitudinally, the blades having means adjacent one of their respective ends whereby the}' may be coupled together with the blades extending along opposed sides of a V from the region of coupling, whereby the open end of the V may be closed b}' finger pressure on the outsides of the blades. In another aspect the invention provides a kit of parts comprising two separate arms or blades as defined in the immediately preceding paragraph.

Preferably the blades are releasably coupled together.

The blades are preferably flat and of elongated rectangular shape and, in a particularly preferred embodiment, the ends of the blades, i.e. the short sides of the rectangle, are rounded.

The means to couple the blades together in one preferred embodiment is provided by hole and slot means in the blades whereby the end of one blade may be passed through the body of the other blade and then the blades are rotated relative to

each until the blades face across the desired V-formation with one blade captured by the other.

Thus one blade may have a hole towards one of its ends with a pair of linear slots, each extending from a diametrically opposite point across the hole in the longitudinal direction of the blade. The width of the slots is sufficient to accommodate the thickness of the other blade and the longitudinal extent of the two linear slots plus the diameter of the hole is sufficient to accommodate the width of the second blade. The second blade has a pair of arcuate, e.g. hemispherical slots, one in each longitudinal edge and towards one end of the blade. The slots are positioned longitudinally of the blade to correspond to the position of the hole in the first blade. The end of the second blade may then be inserted through the aperture defined by the hole and linear slots of the first blade until the edge slots of the second blade are within the hole of the first blade. Rotation of one or other blade through 90° then couples the blades together in the desired V formation of the pair of tongs.

In another embodiment the means to couple the blades together is a connector, which is preferably relatively rigid, whereby each arm or blade may be located at one of its respective ends in the connector, the connector containing and retaining the end and an end portion of each arm or blade so that the arms or blades extend along the opposed sides of the desired V, the base of the V being provided by the connector.

Thus, in accordance with this embodiment, the kit of parts of the invention comprises two separate arms or blades and the connector for the arms or blades

The connector is preferably made of plastics material and may be made by extrusion or injection moulding. Alternatively, it may, if desired, be made of metal or wood.

The connector may have a generally V-shaped section or may contain a generally V-shaped recess to contain the arms or blades and to configure them to lie in V- formation as thev extend from the connector. The ends of arms or blades mav fit into slots in the connector or be otherwise restrained in their desired positions in the connector. For example, the connector may have hollow arms into which the end portions of the arms or blades of the tongs fit. They may be retained in those

arms or other slots by interlocking means or, preferably, merely by being a tight interference fit.

The arms or blades are preferably of identical external dimensions, i.e. length,

width and thickness. They may be of any suitably flexible material, e.g. plastics, metal or wood. They may, if desired, be coloured and/or carry a logo or other decoration but it may be preferred for many intended uses that they are plain, simple and inexpensive for throw-away use.

The invention enables a practical inexpensive means of providing a utensil for the eating of food which can be picked up by the tongs - or tweezer-like action of thc- device. it has widespread applicability, e.g. as indicated above, in takeaway.s, and other fast food outlets and cafeteria, for picnics and buffets and the like.

Embodiments of the invention will now be described by way of example only with reference to the accompanying drawings in which:

Figure 1 is a plan view of a first blade for use in a first embodiment of the

invention; Figure 2 is a similar view of a second blade to co-operate with the first blade;

Figure 3 is a perspective view of a pair of tongs formed by coupling together the blades of Figures 1 and 2;

Figure 4 is an exploded view of a pair of tongs according to a second embodiment of the invention; and

Figure 5 is a perspective view of the connector of Figure 4.

In Figure 1 a flat blade 10 is of elongated rectangular shape with longitudinal edges 10A, 10D and rounded short ends 10C, 10D. Towards end 10D is a centrally- disposed hole 11 with linear slots 12A and 12B extending in the longitudinal direction of the blade from opposite sides of the hole 1 1 , Slots 12 A, 12B are of sufficient width to accept the thickness of blade 20 (see Figure 2) and of sufficient overall length together with the diameter of hole 1 1 to accept the width of blade 20.

ln Figure 2 blade 20 is of similar elongated rectangular shape with longitudinal edges 20A, 20B and rounded short ends 20C, 20D. A pair of opposed hemispherical slots 21 A, 2 IB is formed in edges 20A, 20B respectively at a position along blade 20 corresponding to ihc position of hole 1 1 in blade 10. Blades 10 and 20 are then releasably coupled together to form a pair of food tongs as shown in Figure 3. End 20D of blade 20 has been passed through hole 1 1 and slots 12A, 12B of blade 10 until edge slots 2 1Λ, 21 B are received inside

hole 1 1. The blades are then rotated through 90° relative to each other so that blade 20 is captured inside hole 1 1 of blade 10 and the blades face each other to form the V shape shown in Figure 3. The flexibility of blades 10 and 20 allows

them to be pressed towards each other so that their ends 10C and 20C come together. Thus the tongs may be held between the fingers and the thumb of one hand and the blades pressed together to pick up an item of food positioned between the blades.

In the embodiment of Figures 4 and 5 tongs 1 10 are formed from two identical separate arms 1 12, 1 14 and a relatively rigid connector 1 16 moulded of plastics material to have a generally U-shapc. The ends 1 12A, 1 14A of arms 1 12 , 1 14 are

l eceive.u as a push-fit in sockets. 1 18, 120 in the arms 122 , 124 icspectiv cl) of connector 1 16. When the arms 1 12, 1 14 are so positioned with the ends in place in the sockets 1 18, 120, the opposite ends 1 12B, 1 14B of the arms of the tongs that are so formed may be brought towards each other by flexing of the arms caused by finger pressure on their outer surfaces. Thus food may be gripped between the arms 1 12, 1 14 adjacent their ends 1 12B, 1 14B.

The arms may be e.g. of wood, plastics material or rigid card. It will be appreciated that the tongs of the invention may be useful for picking up items other than food.

Claims

1. A pair of tongs (10, 1 10), the tongs comprising two separate elongate arms or blades (10, 20, 1 12, 1 14), at least one of the arms being able to flex longitudinally, characterised in that the arms (10, 10B, 1 12A, 1 14A) have means (1 1, 12A, 12B, 21A, 2 IB, 116) adjacent one of their respective ends (10A, 10B, 112A, 1 14A) whereby they may be coupled together with the arms (10, 20, 112, 114) extending along opposed sides of a V from the region of coupling and whereby the open end of the V may be closed by finger pressure on the outside of the arms (10, 20, 1 12, 1 14).
2. A pair of tongs according to Claim 1 , characterised in that the arms (10, 20, 1 12, 1 14) are flat and of elongated generally rectangular shape.
3. Λ pair of tongs according to Claim 2, characterise- d in that the short sides (10C, 10D, 20C, 20D) of the rectangle are rounded.
4. A pair of tongs according to Claim 1 , 2 or 3, characterised in that the co¬ operating means to couple the arms together is provided by hole (11) and slot (12A, 12B, 21 A, 2 IB) means whereby the end of one arm (20) may be passed through the body of the other arm (10), the arms (10, 20) may then be rotated relative to each otiier until the arms face across the desired V- formation with one arm (20) captured by the other ( 10).
5. A pair of tongs according to Claim 4, characterised in that a first arm (10) has a hole (11) towards one of its ends (10D) with a linear slot (12A, 12B) extending from the hole (11) in the longitudinal direction of the arm (10),
the width of the slot (11) being sufficient to accommodate the thickness of
the second arm (20) and the longitudinal extent of the linear slot (12A, 12B) plus the diameter of the hole (11) being sufficient to accommodate the width of the second arm (20), the second arm (20) having a pair of arcuate
slots (21 A, 2 IB), one in each longitudinal edge (20A, 20B) towards one end (20D) of the arm and corresponding to the positioning of the hole (11) in the first arm (10).
6. A pair of tongs according to Claim 5, in which a pair of linear slots (10, 20, 112, 1141 extends from the hole (11) in the first arm (10), the slots (12A, 12B) being diametrically opposed across the hole (11)
7 A pair of tongs according to Claim 1, 2, or 3, characterised m that the means to couple the arms or blades (112, 114) together is a connector (116), whcieby each arm or blade (112, 114) is located at one of its respective ends (112A, 114A) in the connector (116), the connector (116) containing and retaining the end (132A, 114A) and an end portion of each arm or blade (112, 114) so that the arms or blades extend along the opposed sides of the V, the base of the V being provided by the connector
'116)
8. A pair of tongs according to Claim 7, characterised in that the connector
( 1 16) is relatively rigid.
9. A pair of tongs according to Claim 7 or 8, characterised in that the connector (116) is an extrusion or injection moulding of plastics material.
10. A pair of tongs according to Claim 7, 8 or 9, characterised in that the connector (1 16) has a generally U-shaped recess to contain the arms or blades (112, 114).
11. A pair of tongs according to any one of Claims 7 to 10, characterised in that the ends (112A, 1 14A) of the arms or blades (1 12, 1 14) fit into hollow arms (122, 121 ) of the connector (1 16).
12. A pair of tongs according to any preceding Claim, in which the arms (10, 20, 112, 1 14) of the pair are of identical length, width and thickness.
13. A pair of tongs according to any preceding Claim, in which each arm (10, 20, 1 12, 1 14) is from about 100 to 150 mm in length, 10 to 20 mm in width and 1 to 2 mm in thickness.
14. A kit of parts comprising two separate elongate arms or blades (10, 20, 1 12, 1 14), at least one of the arms (10, 20, 112, 114) being able to flex longitudinally, the arms having means adjacent one of their respective ends whereby they may be coupled together with the arms (10, 20, 1 12, 114) extending along opposed sides of a V from the region of coupling and whereby the open end of the V may be closed by finger pressure on the outside of the arms (10, 20, 112, 114).
15. A kit of parts according to Claim 14, characterised in that it additionally includes a connector (116) to receive and retain an end (112A, 1 14A) and an end portion of each arm or blade (10, 20, 112, 114).
PCT/GB1997/001206 1996-05-03 1997-05-01 Tongs WO1997041762A1 (en)

Priority Applications (4)

Application Number Priority Date Filing Date Title
GB9609341A GB9609341D0 (en) 1996-05-03 1996-05-03 Tongs
GB9609341.4 1996-05-03
GB9701315.5 1997-01-22
GB9701315A GB9701315D0 (en) 1997-01-22 1997-01-22 Tongs

Applications Claiming Priority (3)

Application Number Priority Date Filing Date Title
EP19970918291 EP0902638B1 (en) 1996-05-03 1997-05-01 Implement for grasping and eating food
DE1997618783 DE69718783D1 (en) 1996-05-03 1997-05-01 Device for gripping and digestion of foodstuffs
AU2647397A AU2647397A (en) 1996-05-03 1997-05-01 Tongs

Publications (1)

Publication Number Publication Date
WO1997041762A1 true true WO1997041762A1 (en) 1997-11-13

Family

ID=26309269

Family Applications (1)

Application Number Title Priority Date Filing Date
PCT/GB1997/001206 WO1997041762A1 (en) 1996-05-03 1997-05-01 Tongs

Country Status (3)

Country Link
EP (1) EP0902638B1 (en)
DE (1) DE69718783D1 (en)
WO (1) WO1997041762A1 (en)

Cited By (8)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
WO2000042889A1 (en) * 1999-01-19 2000-07-27 Jani Martikainen Chopsticks
DE102004050678A1 (en) * 2004-10-18 2006-04-20 Metallwarenfabrik Marktoberdorf Gmbh & Co. Kg Forks or spoons have slots in their handles which interlock, allowing pair to be assembled to form tongs, hooks on their ends fitting against each other to give resilience
FR2889928A1 (en) * 2005-08-31 2007-03-02 Rony Amar Wooden or plastic chopstick pair for consuming solid food, has chopstick with upper end introduced in opening of another chopstick so as to position shrunken part of former chopstick in hole within opening
US7216910B2 (en) * 2003-02-12 2007-05-15 Jasmina Frauscher Tongs
WO2008087229A1 (en) * 2007-01-18 2008-07-24 Lai Martinez Mario Chopsticks
US7665786B2 (en) 2006-06-08 2010-02-23 Jonathan Simons Folding tongs
WO2014144068A1 (en) * 2013-03-15 2014-09-18 Pecoraro Keith M Cooperating linkable, deformable chopsticks
KR101900430B1 (en) 2017-08-22 2018-09-20 김동진 Multipurpose tongs

Citations (5)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US2670234A (en) * 1951-10-01 1954-02-23 Columbus Plastic Products Inc Food-serving appliance
US3596965A (en) * 1968-10-22 1971-08-03 Vernon Co The Multipurpose hand utensil
US3957298A (en) * 1974-12-03 1976-05-18 Purchase Herbert K Toast tongs
DE2551501A1 (en) * 1975-11-17 1977-10-06 Gallina Ferenc Salad tongs of separable type - has connector at top of each half which can be fixed for use as tongs or separated to use parts singly
US5054835A (en) * 1989-09-21 1991-10-08 Tango Proprietary Limited Food handling implement

Patent Citations (5)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US2670234A (en) * 1951-10-01 1954-02-23 Columbus Plastic Products Inc Food-serving appliance
US3596965A (en) * 1968-10-22 1971-08-03 Vernon Co The Multipurpose hand utensil
US3957298A (en) * 1974-12-03 1976-05-18 Purchase Herbert K Toast tongs
DE2551501A1 (en) * 1975-11-17 1977-10-06 Gallina Ferenc Salad tongs of separable type - has connector at top of each half which can be fixed for use as tongs or separated to use parts singly
US5054835A (en) * 1989-09-21 1991-10-08 Tango Proprietary Limited Food handling implement

Cited By (15)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
WO2000042889A1 (en) * 1999-01-19 2000-07-27 Jani Martikainen Chopsticks
JP2002535020A (en) * 1999-01-19 2002-10-22 マヤムー オイ chopsticks
US6581997B1 (en) 1999-01-19 2003-06-24 Majamoo Oy Chopsticks
US7216910B2 (en) * 2003-02-12 2007-05-15 Jasmina Frauscher Tongs
EP1628557B1 (en) * 2003-02-12 2016-04-06 Jasmina Frauscher Tongs
DE102004050678A1 (en) * 2004-10-18 2006-04-20 Metallwarenfabrik Marktoberdorf Gmbh & Co. Kg Forks or spoons have slots in their handles which interlock, allowing pair to be assembled to form tongs, hooks on their ends fitting against each other to give resilience
FR2889928A1 (en) * 2005-08-31 2007-03-02 Rony Amar Wooden or plastic chopstick pair for consuming solid food, has chopstick with upper end introduced in opening of another chopstick so as to position shrunken part of former chopstick in hole within opening
US7665786B2 (en) 2006-06-08 2010-02-23 Jonathan Simons Folding tongs
US8042851B2 (en) 2007-01-18 2011-10-25 Mario Lai Martinez Chopsticks
WO2008087229A1 (en) * 2007-01-18 2008-07-24 Lai Martinez Mario Chopsticks
WO2014144068A1 (en) * 2013-03-15 2014-09-18 Pecoraro Keith M Cooperating linkable, deformable chopsticks
US9004566B2 (en) 2013-03-15 2015-04-14 Keith M. Pecoraro Cooperating linkable, deformable chopsticks
GB2532119A (en) * 2013-03-15 2016-05-11 M Pecoraro Keith Cooperating linkable, deformable chopsticks
GB2532119B (en) * 2013-03-15 2017-09-06 Michael Pecoraro Keith Cooperating linkable, deformable chopsticks
KR101900430B1 (en) 2017-08-22 2018-09-20 김동진 Multipurpose tongs

Also Published As

Publication number Publication date Type
DE69718783D1 (en) 2003-03-06 grant
EP0902638B1 (en) 2003-01-29 grant
EP0902638A1 (en) 1999-03-24 application

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