Title of Invention

A BOTTLE CLOSURE WITH A GUARANTEE SEAL

Abstract The invention relates to a bottle closure with a guarantee seal, comprises a pouring assembly for fixing to the neck of a bottle and a stopper removably engaged in the pouring assembly; an outer tubular cap is fixed to the stopper covering the stopper and the pouring assembly; the cap is fixed to the stopper at an upper portion of the cap itself and is also being fixed to the pouring assembly by a breakable seal; in order to provide a closure which is economical to manufacture and very difficult to counterfeit , the cap is fixed to the pouring assembly both axially and rotationally by a lower portion of the cap and an intermediate frangible strip is interposed between the upper portion and the lower portion of the cap, integrally formed with the portions of the cap. (Figure 1)
Full Text The present invention relates to an improved bottle closure with a guarantee seal, especially for bottles containing quality drinks such as, for example, matured spirits.
A bottle closure is known from European Patent No. 0502379, which substantially comprises a pouring assembly for fixing to the neck of a bottle and a stopper which removably engages the pouring assembly; an outer tubular cap is fixed to the stopper and bears against a projecting annular portion of a collar of the pouring assembly. A seal is constituted by a breakable outer ring joining the cap and the projecting annular portion of the collar to each other.
The cap covers the stopper and the pouring assembly and its outer surface is smooth so that it can be suitably decorated. This ensures that the closure is aesthetically pleasing.
In order to break the seal, the outer breakable ring is torn by means of a special tab, thus releasing the cap from the outer portion of the collar and enabling the cap to be removed along with the stopper of the pouring assembly.
The seal prevents any counterfeit operation, which would consist in recovering an empty, used bottle with an opened seal, filling it with an equivalent drink of
cheaper quality, reclosing the bottle and reconstructing the seal.
The object of the present invention is to provide a bottle closure comprising a pouring assembly, a stopper and a cap fixed to this stopper, which has a seal which is more economical to manufacture than that described above and even more effective.
Accordingly, the present invention provides a bottle closure with a guarantee seal, which has a pouring assembly for fixing to the neck of a bottle and a stopper removably engaged in the pouring assembly, an outer tubular cap being fixed to the stopper so as to cover the stopper and the pouring assembly, the upper portion of the cap being fixed to the stopper and the cap also being secured to the pouring assembly with a breakable seal, characterized in that it has means fixing the cap to the pouring assembly both axially and rotationally by a lower portion of the cap and in that an intermediate breakable annular strip is interposed between the said upper portion and the said lower portion of the cap integrally formed with the two said portions of the cap.
In order better to understand the invention one embodiment thereof is described herewith by way of non-limitative example, illustrated in the appended drawings, in which :
Figure 1 is an enlarged, partially sectioned elevational view of a bottle closure according to the
invention;
Figure 2 is an elevational view of a component of the closure of Figure 1;
Figure 3 shows the component of Figure 2 rotated 180° about its own longitudinal axis;
Figure 4 is an enlarged partial section of the component of Figure 2, taken on the line IV-IV;
Figure 5 is a perspective view of the bottle closure of Figure 1;
Figure 6 shows the seal being broken on the said closure; and
Figure 7 shows the said bottle closure with the seal broken.
With reference to Figure 1, a closure according to the invention is indicated 10, while a bottle, of which only the upper portion is shown, is indicated 11.
The bottle 11, in itself conventional, has a substantially cylindrical neck 12 with a mouth 13 and a body 14 joined to the neck 12.
The closure 10 includes a pouring assembly 15 of a known type and therefore not described in detail here but simply broken down into its main parts. The pouring assembly 15 includes a ball valve member 16 which is inserted into the neck 12 of the bottle and prevents fraudulent refilling of the bottle. A pouring unit 17 is mounted on the valve member 16. A collar 18 is fixed to the pouring unit 17 and surrounds the outside of the bottle neck 12. All the components described above of
the pouring assembly 15 are securely fixed to each other. The pouring assembly 15 is fixed to the neck 12 of the bottle both axially and rotationally in a known manner.
A stopper 19 is screwed onto the pouring unit 17. An outer tubular cap 20, of plastics material, is mounted on the stopper 19 so as totally to cover the stopper 19 and the collar 18 of the pouring assembly 15. In an upper portion 26 of the cap 20, the stopper 19 and the cap 20 are fixed against rotation by two respective knurlings 21 and 22 engaged with one another. In addition, again in the upper portion 26 of the cap 20, the stopper 19 and the cap 20 are fixed to each other axially by means of an annular projection 23 inside the cap which bears against the lower portion of the stopper. In addition, the cap 2 0 is also fixed, at a lower portion 31, for rotation with the collar 18 again by means of respective annular knurlings 24 and 25 engaged with one another. Still at its lower portion 31, the cap 20 is also axially fixed to the collar 18 by means of two series of annular projections 27 and 2 8 of the cap which engage two respective grooves 29 and 30 in the collar.
An intermediate breakable annular strip 32 is interposed between the upper portion 26 and the lower portion 31 of the cap 20. This strip 32 includes a first section which acts as a tab 32A, from which extends a second section 32B for a portion of the circumference and which is followed by a descending section 32C, a further section 32D which extends for a further portion of the
circumference and a final, wider section 32E which extends for a further portion of the circumference and ends at the descending section 32C. The tab 32A is housed in a cutout 33 formed in the upper portion 26 of the cap 20. The annular strip 32 is only connected to the upper portion 26 and to the lower portion 31 of the cap 20 by small bridge elements 34. The final section 32E is also connected to the tab 32A, to the following section 32B and to the descending section 32C by bridge elements 34. One corner of the tab 32A is held slightly detached from the surface of the cap 2 0 by means of a projection 35 on the tab itself. A metal band 36 is also provided which tightly encircles the cap 2 0 at the site of the breakable annular strip 32. In order to hold it securely on the cap 20, the upper portion of the metal band 3 6 grips over an annular pro j ection 37 and an annular groove 3 8 formed in the cap itself. The lower portion of the metal band 36/ on the other hand, closes inwardly around the bo 11om end o f the c ap 20 and the collar 18. This metal band 36 can be fitted onto the cap 20 by rolling.
Because of the mutual coupling of the knurlings 24 and 25 and that of the projections 27 and 28 with the grooves 29, 30, the cap 2 0 is securely fixed to the collar 18 and therefore to the bottle, thus forming a guarantee seal in itself.
As an additional security measure, a symbol 3 9 is inscribed by laser on the metal band 36, the strip 32,
the collar 18 and the upper portion 26 of the cap 20. The chromatic change produced by the laser varies according to the material constituting the surface it is directed at.
The seal on the bottle closure 10 is broken as shown in Figure 6. The tab 32A is gripped and pulled outwardly around the bottle, so as to break the bridge elements 34 and unwind the annular strip 32, breaking and unwinding the metal strip 3 6 along with it.
Figure 7 shows the closure 10 once the annular strip 32 and the metal band 3 6 have been removed. It can be seen that only the upper portion 26 of the cap 20 remains, which appears undone, and the lower portion 31, fixed axially to the collar 18 owing to the engagement of the projections 28 with the groove 3 0 but free to rotate and separated from the said upper portion 26 of the cap 20.
In addition, the only portion of the symbol 3 9 which remains is that on the collar 18 and the upper portion 2 6 of the cap 20. This means that it is clear at a glance that the bottle closure 10 has been unsealed. As an additional guarantee, a message 4 0 is printed all round the collar 18 on the portion which was covered by the now removed strip 32, announcing that the closure 10 has been unsealed.
An advantage of the closure 10 is that the guarantee seal is substantially constituted by the cap itself, and not by a breakable external ring holding the cap to the
collar as in the prior art closure described in European Patent N. 0502379. In this way, when assembling the closure 10 there is no need to make and mount the ring required by the prior art bottle closure, thus saving time and cutting production costs.
A further advantage is provided by the fact that the closure 10 is even more difficult to reconstruct than the previously-mentioned closure, since the cap 20 is broken and would be very difficult and expensive to reconstruct compared to the ring of the prior art closure.
Clearly, the metal band 3 6 and the symbol 3 9 make any reconstruction of the bottle closure 10 even more difficult and expensive.
The outward angle of the tab 32A makes it easy to grasp.
It is clear that variations and/or additions may be made to the invention as described and illustrated.
A simplified version could be manufactured without the metal band and/or the symbol..
The configuration of the elements of the bottle closure could vary. Generally speaking, the annular strip could have any helical development. The shape of the tab could also vary. The tab could be held slightly raised by projections of any shape either on it or on the surface of the collar, or in fact by any other means.
The knurlings, projections and grooves may be replaced by any type of functionally equivalent lock, for example spot welding.
The outer band, forming an additional seal, could be made of a material other than metal, although the arrangement described by way of example is particularly effective.
The laser-inscribed symbol is also especially effective but a symbol could be inscribed by other means.



WE CLAIM:
1. A bottle closure (1) with a guarantee seal, which has a pouring assembly (15) for fixing to the neck (12) of a bottle (11) and a stopper (19) removably engaged in the pouring assembly (15), an outer tubular cap (20) being fixed to the stopper (19) so as to cover the stopper (19) and the pouring assembly (15), the upper portion (26) of the cap (20) being fixed to the stopper (19) and the cap (20) also being secured to the pouring assembly (15) with a breakable seal, characterized in that it has means (24, 25, 27 to 30) fixing the cap (20) to the pouring assembly (15) both axially and rotationally by a lower portion (31) of the cap (20) and in that an intermediate breakable annular strip (32) is interposed between the said upper portion (26) and the said lower portion (31) of the cap (20) integrally formed with the two said portions (26,31)ofthecap(20).
2. The bottle closure as claimed in claim 1, wherein the intermediate breakable annular strip (32) has a substantially helical development.
3. The bottle closure as claimed in claim 2, wherein the intermediate breakable annular strip (32) is connected to the said upper (26) and lower (31) portions of the cap (20) only by bridge elements (34).
4. The bottle closure as claimed in claim 3, wherein the superimposed sections (32A, 32B, 32E) of the intermediate breakable annular strip (32) are also joined to each other only by bridge elements (34).
5. The bottle closure as claimed in claim 1, wherein the intermediate annular strip (32) has an initial section serving as a tab (32A) for grasping and tearing the strip.
6. The bottle closure as claimed in claim 4, wherein the intermediate annular strip (32) has an initial section shaped like a tab (32A) from which a further section (32B)
extends for a portion of the circumference, and from which extends a descending section (32C), a further section (32D) which extends for a further portion of the circumference and a final, wider section (32E) which extends for a portion of the circumference and ends at the descending portion (32C).
7. The bottle closure as claimed in claim 5 or 6, wherein the tab-shape section (32A) is housed in a cut-out (33) in the cap (20).
8. The bottle closure as claimed in claim 7, wherein means (35) are provided to hold the tab (32A) away from the surface of the cap (20).
9. The bottle closure as claimed in claim 8, wherein the said means are constituted by a projection (35) on the tab (32A).
10. The bottle closure as claimed in any one of the preceding claims, wherein a breakable annular band (36) is provided around the intermediate annular strip (32).
11. The bottle closure as claimed in claim 10, wherein the cap has at least one annular projection (37) and one annular groove (38) for holding the annular band (36) onto the cap (20).
12. The bottle closure as claimed in claim 10 or 11, wherein the said annular band (36) is made of metal and is tightened around the intermediate breakable annular strip (32) by rolling.
13. The bottle closure as claimed in claim 1, wherein the axial locking means are constituted by annular projections (27, 28) inside the cap (20) which engage grooves (29, 30) in the collar (18) at the site of the lower portion (31) of the cap (20), and in that the rotational locking means comprise respective annular knurlings (24,25) in the cap (20) and the collar (18) which engage each other.
14. A bottle closure with a guarantee seal, substantially as herein described and illustrated with reference to the accompanying drawings.


Documents:

2335-mas-1998 - abstract.pdf

2335-mas-1998 - claims.pdf

2335-mas-1998 - correspondence others.pdf

2335-mas-1998 - correspondence po.pdf

2335-mas-1998 - description complete.pdf

2335-mas-1998 - drawings.pdf

2335-mas-1998 - form 1.pdf

2335-mas-1998 - form 26.pdf

2335-mas-1998 - form 3.pdf

2335-mas-1998 - form 4.pdf

abs 2335-mas-1998 abstract.jpg


Patent Number 247471
Indian Patent Application Number 2335/MAS/1998
PG Journal Number 15/2011
Publication Date 15-Apr-2011
Grant Date 11-Apr-2011
Date of Filing 16-Oct-1998
Name of Patentee GUALA CLOSURES S P A
Applicant Address VIA SAN GIOVANNI BOSCO 53/55, 15100 ALESSANDRIA
Inventors:
# Inventor's Name Inventor's Address
1 BATTEGAZZORE PIERO VIA G GALILEI 74, 15100 ALESSANDRIA
PCT International Classification Number B65D41/00
PCT International Application Number N/A
PCT International Filing date
PCT Conventions:
# PCT Application Number Date of Convention Priority Country
1 MI97A002423 1997-10-28 Italy