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Numéro de publicationUS3516774 A
Type de publicationOctroi
Date de publication23 juin 1970
Date de dépôt5 juin 1968
Date de priorité5 juin 1968
Numéro de publicationUS 3516774 A, US 3516774A, US-A-3516774, US3516774 A, US3516774A
InventeursLivingstone Gregory W
Cessionnaire d'origineSafety Flames Corp
Exporter la citationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
Liens externes: USPTO, Cession USPTO, Espacenet
Torch
US 3516774 A
Résumé  disponible en
Images(1)
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Revendications  disponible en
Description  (Le texte OCR peut contenir des erreurs.)

June 23, 1970 e. w. LIVINGSTONE 3,516,774

TORCH Filed June 5, 1968 2 uvvsxvrom GREGORY! L/W/VGSTO/VE United States Patent 3,516,774 TORCH Gregory W. Livingstone, La Grange, Ill., assignor, by mesne assignments, to Safety Flames Corporation, Northbrook, Ill., a corporation of Delaware Filed June 5, 1968, Ser. No. 734,717 Int. Cl. F23d 3/18 US. Cl. 431-323 7 Claims ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE The disclosure discribes a torch container having an elongated wick member comprising an absorbent core encased within a tubular support member extending from the bottom through an opening in the top of the container. The support member has an open or slotted side wall to allow access of the fuel to the absorbent core and is rigid to maintain the wick Without loss in length due to combustion in a substantially axial spaced upright relationship within the container. A short vent tube is provided in the top end of the wick to allow entry of air to the container and to entrap vapors for instant lighting and a snap-on cover encases the extended end of the wick and encloses the top opening. The torch container and Wick assembly are constructed of inexpensive materials so that the entire unit is disposable when the fuel contents are dissipated. In one embodiment a frangible and combustible plastic cap is provided between the snapon cover and encompassing the end of the wick which is lighted to start the combustion process or may be broken off to open the torch for use. The platsic cap has a radial flange which is engaged between the matching cuwatures of the rolled edge top opening and the crimped-in edge of an overlying collar. Other embodiments are disclosed.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION Outdoor torch lighting is now in general use. The devices to contain the liquid fuel operate on the principle of the old kerosene lamp. The wick member generally extends from the bottom of the container, where it is bathed in fuel up, through a cylindrical collar at the top opening of the container. In this manner, the Wick becomes saturated with the fuel and carries it to the top opening where it can be burned like a candle. Outdoor torches have enlarged wicks and large capacity containers to give a torch-like flame of yellow incandescence for extended periods of time.

The wicks for these devices are in the form of a loosely woven rope with a cotton core which flares at the ends. The wicks are made longer than the depth of the fuel container. The burning process gradually consumes the wick which must, from time to time, 'be pulled up so that a sufficient amount of wick is present at the top of the collar to furnish fuel for the flame. Because of the nature of the wick holder and the tendency of the wick to burn and disintegrate, it develops an enlarged tuft at the top end. The evaporation of fuel is rapid'and uncontrolled and the combustion is incomplete, producing a tarry black residue which coats both the wick tuft and the surrounding parts of the container. This residue presents an inconvenience since it gets on the hands and clothing during the handling of the torches and must be removed with soap and water from time to time. The presence of the residue is unsightly and produces odors. In order to maintain some degree of combustion efficiency at the burning end of the wick, this blackened tarry tuft must be trimmed periodically. In a short time, the wick must be replaced because it is too short to reach the fuel level in the container or will not reach far enough down in the container to maintain contact with 3,515,774 Patented June 23, 1970 lower levels of fuel. Wicks of this nature are specially fabricated so that they are strong enough to be pulled or punched through the top holding collar to add the needed burning tip and have a woven cover so that the sides are smooth and somewhat elastic.

It is apparent that the prior art devices have many drawbacks. When the fuel container is empty the wick and cover holding same must be removed and the fuel supply replenished. This requires that the cover member must be detachably mounted to the main body of the container through some kind of a vapor-tight screw fastening and also that the container be handled each time it is filled. The removal of a wetted wick from the container during refilling presents an added inconvenience. To adjust the wick in its holder dexterity is required to cause the wick to be moved upwardly in the cover member since the opening must be restrictive enough to hold the wick in place and prevent the wick from dropping into the fuel. The torch itself becomes unsightly due to accumulations of soot and tar around the flame area.

The object of this invention is to provide an easy to use, fool proof, convenient, disposable fuel container and wick combination which can be used as a torch or safety light, does not require adjustment of the wick, is easy to light and can be inserted into a lantern or outdoor lighting fixture, to provide a convenient, clean, safely handled source of fuel for torch lighting. Another object of this invention is to provide a torch light which overcomes or mitigates the disadvantages of the prior art devices.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The invention concerns a unified, disposable fuel container and torch light combined having an elongated absorbent wick encased within a supporting tube which melts back on lighting to form a neck and expose a top tuft of wick. The tube has a side opening to allow access of fuel to the wick. A short vent tube is provided in the top of the wick to allow for expansion and contraction and to promote quick lighting. A frangible and ignitable sealing cap is provided over the upper end of the wick member. The container can be used as a torch light or safety light itself or placed within an outdoor lantern with the top protruding to the open air. The invention eliminates the messy job of handling soot-covered torches and provides a wick which is not consumed by the combustion process and accordingly does not need adjustment.

DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS An embodiment of this invention is illustrated in the drawings wherein:

FIG. 1 is a side elevational view of the container of this invention with the snap-on cap shown thereabove;

FIG. 2 is a cross-sectional view taken along the lines 2-2 of FIG. 1;

FIG. 3 is an enlarged fragmentary view of the top part of FIG. 2;

FIG. 4 is an enlarged fragmentary view of the top part of the container shown in FIGS. 2 and 3 with the cap portion of the seal broken ofi or consumed by a starting flame;

FIG. 5 is a top view of the container as shown in FIG. 4;

FIG. 6 is an exploded view of the vent tube and the encased wick member; and

FIG. 7 is a view representing the torch of this invention in operation within an outdoor lantern.

THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT Referring to the drawings the device of this invention is shown to comprise a container 10 having a cylindrical side wall 12, a bottom 14 which is concave and has a truncated flat central portion 16. The bottom 14 and the side wall 12 are joined together in a roll crimped edge 18. The top 20 is dome-shaped and is joined to the top edge of the side wall 12 by means of the roll crimp edge 22, formed in the conventional manner.

The dome top 20 has an olfset flat peripheral wall 24 which is rolled outwardly on its inner edge to form the circumferential rolled shoulder 26 (FIG. 3). The inner periphery of the rolled shoulder 26 defines the top o ening 28 of the container 10. The container is adapted to hold the fuel 30 therein in a leak-proof manner with the liquid level 32 in the vicinity of the crimped edge 22 or just below same when in the filled condition. A vapor space 34 above the liquid level 32 is defined in part by the dome top 20.

The opening 28 is sealed by means of thermoplastic, combustible molded plastic cap 36 which has a lower radial flange 38 and the crimped edge 35 encompassing the rolled shoulder 26 of the dome top 20 as shown in FIG. 3. The cap 36 has a cup 40 of tubular cross section. A collar or disc 42 is provided with a central opening 44, to receive the cup 40*. The collar 42 has the outer peripheral edge 45 crimped over the edge 41 of the cap 36. The collar 42 when crimped into position forms a vapor tight seal between the rolled shoulder 26 and the edge 39. The collar 42 also forms a radial rim, by means of the crimped edge 45, whereby the snap cap 46 can be placed thereon with its lower rim 48 engaged upon the wall 24. The snap-on cap 46 forms a protection for the cup 40 during shipping and handling and also an essentially leak-proof cover should the container be tipped over after the cup 40' is removed. These parts as shown in FIGS. 2 and 3 form a leak-proof container.

As shown in FIG. 6, the container has a wick member 50 which comprises a tubular support element 52 with a longitudinal slot 54 extending from the top edge 56 to the bottom edge 58. Encased Within the tubular element 52 is the absorbent wick 6t composed of cotton bat 62 held into a rod-like shape by the outer thread net 64. Both ends of the wick 60 are substantially contiguous to the ends 56 and 58 of the tubular support 52. A vent tube 66 having a small central bore 68 therethrough is imbedded in the top end of the wick 60 so that the bore 68 is exposed as shown in FIG. 4. The bottom end 70 of the vent tube 66 extends into that portion of the wick which is within the vapor space 34 of the container 10. The vent tube 66 can be located at any radial or circumferential position in the top end of the wick member '50, i.e., at the juncture 72 between the outer surface of the wick element 60 and the inner surface of the tubular support 52 as shown in FIGS. and 6.

The combined wick member 50 with the vent tube 66 therein, is positioned in the container within the fuel 30 with the bottom edge 58 resting on the flat bottom 16 and the top end extending through the opening 28 into the cup 40 as shown in FIG. 3. The cup 40 has an inside diameter slightly larger than the wick member 50 so that an annular space 74 is formed thereabout and also the length of the wick member 50 is such that the cup 40 holds the wick in place.

To use the fuel container it is only necessary to remove the snap cap 46, apply a match or other source of fire to the cap 40, which operation causes the cap 40 to burn down to a shriveled edge 76 and the top end 56 of the wick member 50 is lighted thereby. The initial lighting or re-lighting of the wick member 50 is facilitated by the vent tube 66 which will hold vapors of fuel from the top part of the cotton bat 62. The vent tube more importantly allows a positive air passage between the vapor space 34 and the atmosphere to compensate for expansion and contraction under the heat conditions imposed by the use of the torch. During the initial combustion the tubular support 52 melts back to form a rim 80 (FIG. 7) and retains the wick in upright position at all times during use. One use of the torch of this invention is illustrated in FIG. 7 wherein the container 4 10 is shown positioned within a lantern 82 with the dome 20 extending upward through the aperture 84 therein and the dome 20 providing a raised ornamental base between the lantern and the flame 86. To extinguish the flame, it is only necessary to place the snap cap 46 over the flame and onto the snap rim 45.

The support member 52 can be formed of metal, but is preferably formed of a thermoplastic material such as a plastic which melts back, has a slow to very slow burning rate and is preferably self-extinguishing. ExampleS of metal are aluminum and steel, and examples of plastics are polyethylene, polypropylene, polybutylene, nylon, such as the Du Pont nylon resin known under the proprietary name of Zytel, extrusion grades of acrylonitrile-butadiene-styrene, fluroplastics such as tetrafluoroethylene, polystyrene, polyvinyl dichloride. The lastic composition is preferably extruded into a tubelike shape with the slot 54 along a side. While the extruded tube is still in a semi-molten condition, particularly on the inside surface, the absorbent core 62 is laid in the inside of the tube. As the tube hardens the plastic sticks to the sides of the core and the parts are adhered together. This forms a unified wick member 50 when cut into the desired lengths and manufacture can be conducted continuously with existing plastics extruding machinery.

The cap and seal 40 is made of frangible plastic which is readily molded into the desired shape and preferably can be burned off and serve as an aid in lighting the wick. Examples of such plastics are cellulose nitrate, cellulose acetate, and epoxy resins, which are preferably either transparent or translucent.

The vent tube 66 is constructed of metal, such as steel or aluminum and can be placed in its position by forcing it into the cotton bat 62 by hand with a twisting action during assembly of the torch. The slot 54 in the support member 52 need not be continuous from the top edge 56 to the bottom edge 58 and can be of any desired width to allow access of fuel to the wick member 60, provided the circumferential gripping and supporting action of the support member 52 around the wick member 60 is retained. Assembly of the wick 60 therein is facilitated by forming the slot 54 during extrusion of the support member 50 and forcing the rope-like wick through the slot while the plastic is still in a soft condition. Normally, the circumferential width of the slot 54 will represent no more than about A of the circumference of the support member and preferably about A to /6 of this total circumference. The slot 54 can be spread slightly to admit the wick member 60 during assembly.

While this invention has been described fully and completely with special emphasis upon certain preferred embodiments, it is to be understood that within the scope of the appended claims this invention may be practiced otherwise than as specifically described.

What is claimed is:

1. A torch comprising, in combination:

(a) an enclosed housing for liquid hydrocarbon fuel with an open top having an outwardly rolled peripheral beaded rim therearound;

(b) wick member in said housing having its upper end extending within and above said open top and the lower end resting on the bottom of said enclosure;

(c) said wick member having an inner core of absorbent material for said fuel an outer supporting wall and a vent communicating with the vapor space above said fuel;

(d) said outer wall being formed of a thermplastic material and having an opening through the Wall in communication with said fuel;

(e) a cap member encompassing the extended upper end of said wick member;

(f) said cap member being formed of a flammable plastic material and having a base flange with a downturned rounded edge encompassing the beaded rim of said top opening;

(g) a collar around said cap member having an outer down-turned rounded edge crimped upon said rounded edge of said flange and holding said cap member in sealed relationship upon said top opening of said container; and

(h) a snap cap adapted to enclose said cap member and engage concentrically around the outside periphery of said flange in a snap-fit relationship.

2. A torch in accordance with claim 1 in combination with a pot having an open top to receive said container with said capped end protruding above the open top thereof.

3. A torch in accordance with claim 1 in which a said vent comprises a tube extending longitudinally between said absorbent material and said supporting wall to a point within said vapor space.

4, A torch adapted to burn a liquid fuel under controlled conditions comprising:

(a) a container for said fuel having an opening at the top end;

(b) a wick member extending through said opening into said container, the top of said wick member extending above said opening;

(0) said wick member having an absorbent core encased within a tubular support housing which is composed of a non-flammable thermoplastic which melts back to a retatining rim around said absorbent core upon ignition of said wick member; and

(d) said housing having an opening through the side wall thereof exposing said absorbent material to the fuel contents of said container.

5. A torch adapted to burn a liquid fuel under controlled conditions comprising:

(a) a container for said fuel having an opening at the top end;

(b) a wick member extending through said opening into said container, the top of said wick member extending above said opening;

(c) said wick member having an absorbent core encased within a tubular support housing of nonfiammable extruded polyethylene material; and

(d) said housing having an opening through the side wall thereof exposing said absorbent material to the fuel contents of said container.

6. A torch adapted to burn a liquid fuel under controlled conditions comprising:

(a) a container for said fuel having an opening at the top end;

(b) a wick member extending through said opening into said containing, the top of said Wick member extending above said opening;

(0) said wick member having an absorbent core encased within a tubular support housing of non-flammable material;

(d) said housing having an opening through the side wall thereof exposing said absorbent material to the fuel contents of said container;

(e) a cap member over the extended end of said wick member and affixed across said opening in said container; and

(f) said cap member being composed of flammable plastic material.

7. A torch adapted to burn a liquid fuel under controlled conditions comprising:

(a) a container for said fuel having an opening at the top end;

(b) a wick member extending through said opening into said container, the top of said wick member extending above said opening;

(c) said wick member having an absorbent core encased within a tubular support housing of non-inflammable material;

(d) said housing having an opening through the side wall thereof exposing said absorbent material to the fuel contents of said container;

(e) a cap member over the extended end of said wick member and afiixed across said opening in said container;

(f) said cap member being composed of frangible material;

(g) said cap member having an integral flange with a downturned peripheral edge;

(h) said opening having a raised beaded peripheral edge engaging the downturned edge of said flange; and

(i) a collar member encompassing said cap member and having a downturned crimped edge engaging over said peripheral edge of said flange to hold the same in sealed relationship.

FOREIGN PATENTS 700,127 12/1940 Germany. 252,946 6/1926 Great Britain.

EDWARD G. FAVORS, Primary Examiner UNITED STATES PATENT OFFICE CERTIFICATE OF CORRECTION Patent No. 3,516,774 June 23, 1970 Gregory W. Livingstone at error appears in the above identified It is certified th are hereby corrected as patent and that said Letters Patent shown below:

ted specification, lines 3 to 5,

to Safety Flames Corporation,

Delaware" should read General International In the heading to the prin by mesne assignments,

Ill. a corporation of sne assignments, to

a corporation of Delaware "assignor,

Northbrook, assignor, by me Industries, Inc.

Signed and sealed this 19th day of January 1971.

(SEAL) Attest:

WILLIAM E. SCHUYLER, JR.

Edward M. Fletcher, Jr.

Commissioner of Patents Attesting Officer

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Classifications
Classification aux États-Unis431/323
Classification internationaleF23Q2/00
Classification coopérativeF23Q2/00
Classification européenneF23Q2/00