COCONUT PTY LTD (Unit 2, 8 Wolseley RoadPoint Piper, New South Wales 2027, AU)
|What is claimed is:
1. A tool for opening a coconut, comprising:
a cutting body rigidly attached to a handle;
the cutting body further having a circular opening, a lower rim of which is provided with cutting teeth; and
a stator , the stator having a base, an upper extent of the stator comprising a mouth opening that is adapted to receive the body of the rotor, the base having a base opening with an underside that is adapted to engage the surface of a coconut.
2. The tool of claim l, wherein:
an array of fins extends from the underside of the stator that contribute to an engagement between the stator and the coconut.
3. The tool of either of claims 1 or 2, wherein:
an outer surface of the stator is smooth, transitioning from a minimum diameter toward the mouth opening to a maximum diameter at the base opening.
4. The tool of any one of claims 1-3, wherein:
the stator has a neck that is adapted to make a sliding clearance with respect to an outside surface of the rotor that allows the stator to act as a guide in both a longitudinal direction and with respect to a manual rotation of the rotor.
5. The tool of any one of claims 1-4, wherein:
an upper extent of the handle terminates in a grip.
6. The tool of claim 5, wherein:
at least portions of the grip are over-moulded and fabricated from a softer polymer then the remainder of the handle.
7. The tool of either of claims 5 or 6, wherein:
the grip further comprising regularly spaced protrusions, each having a rounded end. 8. The tool of any one of claims 1-7, wherein:
the cutting body is a circular, replaceable steel blade.
9. The tool of claim 8, wherein:
the blade is retained by a set screw.
10. The tool of any one of claims 1-9, wherein:
the cutting body is made from a food grade stainless steel.
Field of the Invention
The invention relates saws and more particularly to a tool for opening a coconut.
Background of the Invention
With increasing frequency, whole or entire coconuts are sold in western food outlets and particularly in health food and natural food shops. Whole immature coconuts are particularly popular. The immature coconut has an outer husk and a harder inner shell that contains coconut flesh and coconut water". However, many consumers lack the tools or skill to correctly and safely open such a coconut without excessive waste. Perhaps the most common way of opening an immature coconut is with a heavy chopping blade such as a machete, clever, or large knife. However, opening a coconut in this way requires strength, skill and practice. The utilisation of a sharp and heavy cutting blade carries with in inherent risk of injury and the by-product of the process is dangerous shards of coconut husk. Objects and Summary of the Invention
Accordingly, it is an object of the invention to provide a safe and relatively easy way for a consumer to open a coconut.
Accordingly, there is provided a cutting rotor and a stator. The stator has a central opening for receiving the rotor. The rotor further comprises a circular, serrated cutting element.
In another embodiment, there is provided a cutting rotor, a stator and a driving spike. The cutting rotor can be located within the stator. The cutting rotor is driven by the driving spike after the tip of the spike has been manually driven into the coconut.
Brief Description of the Drawing Figures
In order that the invention be better understood, reference is now made to the following drawing figures in which:
Figure ι is a plan view of a "T" shaped driving spike; Figure 2 is a perspective view of a cutting rotor;
Figure 3 is a bottom plan view of a stator;
Figure 4 is a perspective view of the stator depicted in Figure 3; Figure 5 is a side elevation showing the assembly of a stator,
cutting rotor and driving spike;
Figure 6 is a top plan view of the device depicted in Figure 5 with the driving spike engaged with the cutting rotor;
Figure 7 is another embodiment of the invention;
Figure 8 is a perspective view of a further embodiment of the
Figure 9 is an underside perspective of the device depicted in
Figure 10 is a perspective view of a cutting rotor and a stator when separated; and
Fugure 11 is a perspective view of the rotor and stator shown in
Figure 10, when readied for use.
Best Mode and Other Embodiments
As shown in Figures 1 and 5 a tool for opening a coconut comprises a driving spike 10, a cutting rotor 11 and a hand held stator 12. The driving spike 10 further comprises a straight, preferably metallic shaft 13 that terminates in a pointed tip 14. The metallic shaft 13 can be hollow to allow the coconut water to be extracted prior to full access from the rotor. The tip 14 may be threaded or not. In preferred embodiments a proximal end of the tip 14 further comprises a small shoulder 15 that extends slightly beyond the outer surface of the shaft 13. The opposite end of the shaft 13 comprises or carries a handle 16 that preferably extends away from the shaft 13 in opposite directions so as the form a "T". The ends of the handle 16 may be terminated with gripping features of enlarged knobs 17. The size, material and
construction of the driving spike 13 are adapted to allow the user to, with manual pressure, penetrate the outer husks of an immature coconut with the tip 14 by applying pressure to the handle 16.
As suggested by Figures 2,5 and 6, the cutting rotor 20 comprises a generally hemispherical, rigid cutting body 21. The cutting body is characterised by a circular lower rim 22 that is provided with an array of cutting teeth 23. The uppermost part of the stator comprises an elongated slot 20 that is adapted to receive and seat the handle 16. When the handle is seated, rotation of the handle 16 causes rotation of the cutting rotor 11. An exterior surface of the cutting rotor may comprise small elevated bumpers 24, as required to create space and reduce friction between the cutting rotor 11 and the stator 12.
As shown in Figures 3 and 4, the stator 12 comprises a truncated generally hemispherical body 40. The body 40 has a circular lower rim 41 provided with gripping teeth 42. The gripping teeth 42 may be shaped symmetrically or asymmetrically to better resist torque forces encountered during cutting. The upper opening 43 of the stator is smaller than the lower rim 41.
As shown in Figure 5 the tool of the present invention may be assembled onto a coconut 50. In an exemplary method, the cutting rotor 11 is first positioned on top of the coconut with the cutting teeth 23 in engagement with the outer surface 51 of the coconut. The stator 40 is then deposited over the cutting rotor so that the cutting rotor so that the top of the cutting rotor 52 protrudes from the upper opening 43 in the stator. The driving spike 10 is then inserted through the rotor's slot 23 and driven into the coconut 50 so that the tip 14 reaches the interior of the coconut. The driving spike is inserted far enough that, as shown in Figure 6, the handle 16 comes to rest within the slot 23. The slot is deep enough that the handle 16 of the driving spike 10 does not come out or dislodge during cutting operations. The user can then grip the stator 40 and the handle 16 of the driving spike 10. While applying downward pressure onto the stator 40, the handle 16 is rotated. Rotation of the handle causes rotation of the cutting stator 11. Continued rotation and downward pressure on the handle 16 will cause the cutting teeth 23 of the stator 20 to penetrate the coconut and create a circular plug. After the cut is complete, the handle 16 is pulled away from the coconut shoulder 15 of the point 14 will remove the plug thus creating an opening in the coconut through which the water and edible flesh may be extracted, for example, using a spoon. An alternate embodiment of the invention is depicted in Figure 7. In this embodiment, a cylindrical cutting body 70 is rigidly attached to a handle 71. The cutting body 70 further comprises a circular opening 72, the lower rim of which is provided with cutting teeth 73. When urged against the exterior of a coconut, rotation of the handle 71 causes the cutting teeth 73 to create a circular plug and circular opening in the coconut. The side wall 74 of the cutting body must be long enough to penetrate the husks of the coconut being cut.
In preferred embodiments, the cutting diameter of the tools referred to above is approximately 5-iocm.
As shown in Figure 8, the invention further encompasses a circular, serrated cutting element 80 that is insert moulded or otherwise retained by a handle 81. In this example, the handle 81 is cylindrical, and for the purpose of maintaining its rigidity, approximately the same diameter as the circular cutting element 80. The upper extent of the handle 81 terminates in a grip 82. In this example, the grip 82, comprises three regularly spaced protrusions or lobes, each having a rounded end 83. In preferred embodiments, at least portions of the grip 82 are over-moulded and fabricated from a softer polymer then the remainder of the handle. It will be understood that the grip may have more or fewer protrusions 83 or may be formed in the shape of a disc, square or other geometric shape.
As shown in Figures 8 and 9, the stator 84 resembles an inverted funnel. The upper extent of the stator 84 comprises a circular mouth opening 85 that is adapted to receive the cylindrical body portion 81 of the rotor. The stator has a circular base opening 86, the underside of which 87 is adapted to engage the surface of a surface coconut. In this example, an array of fins 88 extends from the underside of the stator toward the coconut and are adapted to contact the coconut, contributing friction to the manual engagement between the stator and the coconut. In preferred embodiments, the outer surface 80 of the stator is smooth, transitioning from a minimum diameter toward the mouth opening 85 to a maximum diameter at the base opening 86. The smooth surface promotes a gripping of the stator with one hand, freeing the other hand to rotate the rotor and drive it into the surface of the coconut. In preferred embodiments, the internal cylindrical area 90 of the neck 91 of the stator is cylindrical and adapted to make light contact or have a slight or sliding clearance with respect to the outside surface of the rotor. This allows the stator to act as a guide in both the longitudinal direction and with respect to the manual rotation of the rotor.
Another embodiment of the invention is depicted in Figures 10 and 11.
As shown in Figure 10, the handle, in this example, comprises three lobes 100. The three lobes form an equilateral triangle. The sides between adjacent lobes include a slight concave 101 that enhances the grip. A slightly raised central dome 102 is located in the middle of the upper surface 103 of the grip. The underside of the grip 104 features parallel arrays of ribs 105 that extend perpendicular to the long axis of each lobe 103. In this example, there are five ribs 105 located between the tip 106 of each lobe and the cylindrical body portion 107. In this example, the cutting blade 108 comprises a stainless steel, food grade hole saw with cutting teeth 109 encircling the lower edge. The blade 108 is retained by a radial set screw 110. The head of the set screw 110 is flush with an exterior surface of the body 107. The distance between the teeth 109 and a lower shoulder 111 of the stem of the handle 107 defines a
penetrating depth. The penetrating depth, being the exposed length of the cutting blade, must be long enough to penetrate the husk of a coconut.
While the present invention has been disclosed with reference to particular details of construction, these should be understood as having been provided by way of example and not as limitations to the scope or spirit of the invention.