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1. (WO1980002546) VANNE DE DISTRIBUTION AMELIOREE
Note: Texte fondé sur des processus automatiques de reconnaissance optique de caractères. Seule la version PDF a une valeur juridique

THIS INVENTION relates to an improved dispensing valve for containers for fluids and particularly containers of the "bag-in-box" variety.

The object of the invention is to provide a dispensing valve which is relatively easy to operate, which can- be stored within the confines of the container when not in use and preferably in which the inlet end of the valve is provided with a frangible seal which ensures that the container remains sealed until the seal is broken by ini-tial operation of the valve.

In one form the invention resides in a dispensing valve for a fluid container comprising a tubular body portion, a flexible skirt sealingly fitted between an opening in the container and the body portion of the valve such that said valve is movable between an inoperative position wherein the valve is located substantially within said opening in the container and an operative position wherein the valve is at least partially extended from said opening, an outlet opening provided in the body portion, a flow control por-tion coupled to the body portion for movement relative thereto between an "off" position and an "on" position with respect of said outlet a fluid passage provided in the body portion, the fluid passage being intended for fluid communication between the outlet and the container when the valve is in said operative position.

The flow control portion may be in the form of a spigot slidably or rotatably mounted within the body portion and being provided with a tubular passage therein connected to the fluid passage in the body portion and an opening leading from the tubular passage, said opening being adapted to register with the outlet opening of the body portion when the spigot is in the "on" position.

OMPI Alternatively the flow control portion may be in the fo of a sleeve slidably or rotatably mounted on the outside the body portion for movement between a position in whi the outlet is covered and a position in which the outlet exposed.

Preferably a frangible seal is fitted to said body porti for preventing fluid communication between the fluid co tainer and the fluid passage of the spigot, said seal bei adapted to be ruptured by the spigot on movement of t spigot relative to the body portion.

Preferably resilient means are provided to bias the fl control portion of the spigot to the "off" position.

The invention is particularly, although not exclusivel applicable for use with containers having an outer conta ner of rigid or substantially rigid material and a flexib inner container or bag for holding liquid.

The invention will be better understood by reference the following description of the specific embodiments sho in the drawings wherein:- Figure 1 is a sectional elevation of the first embod ment in the inoperative position;
Figure 2 is a sectional elevation of the first
embodiment in an operative position;
Figure 3 is a sectional elevation of the first
embodiment in the "on" position;
Figure 4 is a sectional elevation of the second
embodiment with the flexible skirt shown half
in the operative position and half in the inoperative position;
Figure 5 is a sectional elevation of the second
embodiment in the operative position with the
seal ruptured;

OM Figure 6 is a sectional elevation of the second
embodiment with the flexible skirt in alternative positions;
Figure - 7 is a sectional elevation of the third
embodiment in the inoperative position;
Figure 8 is a sectional elevation of the third
embodiment in the operative position;
Figure 9 is a sectional elevation of the third
embodiment in the "on" position;
Figure 10 is a pictorial view of the dispensing
valve of the first embodiment in the inoperative
position;
Figure 11 is a pictorial view of the dispensing
valve of the first embodiment in the operative
position;
Figure 12 is a pictorial view of the dispensing
valve of the first embodiment in the "on"
position; and
Figures 13 to 19 inclusive shown the construction
of a third embodiment and the sequential filling
and operating positions of the dispensing valve.

In the embodiments the dispensing valve is fitted to a container of the type having an outer container 11 of rigid or substantially rigid material and an inner container 13 formed of flexible plastics material.

The dispensing valve shown in the drawings comprises a tubular body portion 15 and a spigot 17 having a flow control portion 19 sealing mounted in the body portion 15. The spigot 17 is movable relative to the body portion between "on" and "off" positions. In the first embodiment shown in Figures 1 to 3, the spigot is adapted to slide axially along the tubular body portion between the "on" and "off" positions. In the second embodiment shown in Figures 4 to 6, the spigot is rotatable within the tubular body portion between the "on" and "off" positions . In the third embodiment shown in Figures 7 to 9 the spigot is adapted to slide
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OMPI IPO <Λ, axially along and rotate relative to the body portion ween the "on" and "off" positions. A fluid passage 21 provided in the flow control portion 19 of the spigot; fluid passage is intended for fluid communication liquid held in the inner container 13. The flow con portion 19 is provided with an opening 25 leading from fluid passage 21; the opening 25 is adapted to regi with an outlet opening 27 in the body portion when spigot is moved to the "on" position, thus allowing f in the container to discharge through the outlet 27 of valve. Resilient means 29 such as a multi-leafed spring fitted between a control member 31 such as a button at end of the spigot 17 remote from the container and outer end of the body portion for biassing the spigot the "off" position. The resilient means may be fo integrally with or separately from the spigot. A stop 3 the spigot is slidably received in a recess 35 on the portion for retaining the spigot in the body portion for limiting the axial sliding movement of the spigot respect to the body portion.

A flange 36 is formed on the outer end of the body por adjacent the control member 31 for use as a finger grip support during operating of the control member 31.

A flexible skirt 37 formed of resilient material ext between an opening in the container and the outer perip of the body portion; in these embodiments the skirt formed integrally with the body portion. The flexible s

37 has a retaining flange 39 which sealingly engages inner container around the periphery of the said ope and may be slidably engaged in the outer container. dispensing valve is movable between an inoperative posi

(as seen in Figures 1, 4, 7 and 10) wherein the valve received in said opening in the container and an opera position (as seen in Figures 2, 5, 8 and 11) wherein valve is at least partially extended from said opening. resilient nature of the skirt- 37 allows the skirt to "r and so accommodate movement of the valve between the op tive and inoperative positions. As seen in the drawings the inner face of the control member 31 bears against the retaining flange 39 when the valve is in the inoperative position. The skirt supports the valve in the operative position.

The inner end of the tubular body portion 15 is fitted with a frangible diaphragm or seal 41 for sealing fluid held in the container from the fluid passage 21 of the spigot. In the case of the first and third embodiments the adjacent end of the spigot is adapted to rupture the seal 41 when the spigot is first moved into the "on" position thus allowing fluid in the container to enter the fluid passage of the spigot.

In the second embodiment as shown in Figures 4 to 6, the spigot is adapted to first move axially along the body portion to rupture the seal and thereafter only rotate relative to the body between the "off" and "on" positions during subsequent use of the valve.

In operation of the dispensing valve the user grasps the dispensing valve and retracts it from the inoperative position. As the dispensing valve is moved from the inoperative position the skirt 37 "rolls" to accommodate the movement and then assumes a position in which it supports the valve in the operative position. Whilst supporting the valve with his fingers as shown in Figure 12 of the drawings the user actuates the control member 31 so as to move the flow control portion 19 of the spigot from the "off" position towards the "on" position. As the spigot first moves to the "on" position the forward face thereof ruptures to seal 41 and allows liquid in the container to enter the fluid passage 21 of the spigot. When the spigot is in the "on" position the opening 25 therein is in register with the outlet opening 27, and hence the fluid in the passage 21 is-able to discharge from the valve through the aligned openings 25 and 27. When the control member 31 is released the resilient means 29 causes the spigot to return to the " position in the case of the first and third embodiments. the second embodiment the spigot is rotated to the " position.

The skirt and body portion of the valve are fitted to container by sealingly fitting the retaining flange around an opening in a flexible sheet of plastics mater One or more further sheets of plastics material are sealed to the sheet having the valve fitted thereto to the flexible inner container of the fluid container, sealing fitted to a precut complimentary opening i pouch. The required volume of liquid may be introduced i the flexible inner container through the tubular body p tion of the valve. The frangible seal 41 is then fitted the tubular body portion by any suitable means . The spi is Inserted into the body portion with a removable spa located between the flange 36 and the inner face of control member 31. The spacer allows the spigot to suf ciently enter the body portion such that the stop 33 located in the recess 35; however, the spacer prevents spigot from rupturing the seal 41. Axial pressure is a lied to the control member 31 to cause the dispensing va to move towards the inoperative position. As the spa contacts the retaining flange 39 the axial pressure on control member is withdrawn and the spacer removed. dispensing valve then assumes the inoperative position. this position the inner face of the control member 31 be against the retaining flange 39, thus preventing the spi from rupturing the seal 41. The inner container is t introduced into the rigid or substantially rigid ou container of the fluid container and the retaining fla 39 passed through an opening of complementary shape in outer container. The outer carton is then closed and seal In the embodiment shown in Figures 13 and 14 of the drawings the dispensing valve comprises a tubular body portion 51 connected to the outer end of a flexible skirt 52 which functions in the same manner as the flexible skirt 37 descr-bed in the previous embodiments. The inner end of the tubular body portion is provided with a frangible seal 53 which prevents communication between the contents of the container and an outlet 54 formed in the tubular body portion, the outer end of which is provided with an internal ratchet thread 56. A sealing ring 55 is provided around the periphery of the outlet. A sleeve 57 is slidably mounted on the outer face of the tubular body portion 51 and is provided on its outer end with an* outwardly projecting flange 58. The facilitate the movement of the sleeve the tubular body is provided with a series of rails and the inner face of the sleeve seals on the sealing ring 55. A spigot 59 provided with an external ratchet thread which mates with the thread 55 projects in to the tubular body portion 51. The spigot is provided with an outwardly directed return skirt 60 the outer periphery of which is provided with a recess so shaped as to engage and lock with a complementary shaped ridge provided at the junction of the outer end of the sleeve and the inner periphery of the flange. The inner end of the spigot is provided with a plurality of cutting teeth 61.

As shown in Figure 13 the container is presented with the tubular body upwards and filled with the contents after which the frangible seal 53 is fitted and fixed in place as is seen in Figure 14. The sleeve 57 and spigot 59 are coupled together and the spigot inserted into the body 51 with a quarter of turn of the threads engaged. The whole assembly is then pushed inwardly the flexible skirt 52 folding back on itself to the transport position as shown in Figure 16 in which position the assembly is covered by a removable section 62 of an outer container 63.

OMPI To dispense the contents the operator removes the remova section 62 and pulls out the assembly using pull handles bails 64 as shown in Figure 17. The operator then rota the spigot 59 to move it inwardly so that the teeth engage and cut the seal 53. The seal is not completely as shown in Figure 18 so that it cannot cause blockag The operator then uses his thumb and fingers to slide sleeve outwardly to the on position as is shown in Fig 19 permitting the contents to discharge through the out 54. The spring effect of the skirt 60 returns the sleeve the closed position over the outlet 54.

The ratchet thread prevents withdrawal of the spigot o the operative position has been reached (Figure 18). desired the ratchet teeth may be replaced by a ratc between the outer periphery of the skirt 60 and the slee 57 or by a locking pawl which engages the cutting teeth or by a plurality of radial fingers on the spigot 59 arranged to engage with a pawl on the anterior surface .the body 51.

When containers fitted with the dispensing valve of t present invention are to be filled with liquids affected exposure to the atmosphere such as wine it is desirab that a frangible seal be used as described above. Wi liquids not affected by the atmosphere such as oils a kerosene a seal is not necessary although it may be used a safeguard against leaking during storage or transport. some instances it may be- desirable to fill the contain through the open body of the dispensing valve before t installation of the spigot or the seal.