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decided: November 3, 1890.



Author: Blatchford

[ 137 U.S. Page 22]

 MR. JUSTICE BLATCHFORD delivered the opinion of the court.

This is a suit in equity, brought in the Circuit Court of the United States for the Northern District of Illinois, March 28, 1883, by Theodore H. Butler, George W. Earhart and William M. Crawford against George Steckel and Frederick Steckel, to recover for the infringement of letters patent No. 274,264, granted to the plaintiffs March 20, 1883, on an application filed July 6, 1882, for an "improvement in bretzel-cutters."

The specification, claims and drawings of the patent are as follows: "This invention relates to an improvement in molds or dies for stamping or cutting out bretzels, having for its object more especially to cause the product or bretzel to have the appearance of a hand-made bretzel; and it consists in the peculiar construction of the mold or die to effect this result, and other details of construction, substantially as hereinafter more fully set forth.

"In the accompanying drawings, Fig. 1 is a plan view of our improved bretzel die or mold. Fig. 2 is a side view, partly

[ 137 U.S. Page 23]

     broken away, thereof. Fig. 3 is an enlarged detailed plan view of the die proper. Figs. 4 and 5 are sectional views, taken respectively on the lines x x and y y of Fig. 3. Fig. 6 is a view of the product or bretzel of our die. In carrying out our invention we construct the die A after the fashion or configuration of the ordinary bretzel in its general shape -- that is, as more clearly shown in Fig. 3. For the purpose of this

[ 137 U.S. Page 24]

     specification we will describe the channel or groove constituting the bretzel-die as consisting of a bow or an approximately heart-shaped portion a, with its meeting portions a extended so as to cross each other, as at a. The underlapped portion is further extended, as at a, said extension crossing or overlapping an extension, a, of the previously overlapped portion a. The extensions a a are projected into the body of the bow a. At a the creaser of one arm of the groove or channel is extended, as at a, across its other arm and united to a, while the creaser a is extended on one side, as at a, across a. The ends of a a project into the bow a and terminate in creasers a. This construction enables the creasing of the product or bretzel at the points above detailed, which imparts to the die-made bretzel the appearance of having been made by hand, or a natural appearance. The die A may be used, as shown, in connection with means to permit its manipulation by hand, which consists of a base B, through which it is adapted to move or operate, the guides or uprights C, the top plate D and the sliding hand-piece E. The uprights or guides C are fixed to the base B and to the plate D. Around the plate D and the guides slides the hand-piece E, cushioned preferably upon helical springs b, secured upon the base B. F F are the expelling-studs, secured to the top plate D, and to the base B, below which they extend a short distance, and through coincident apertures distributed through the die A. The die is fixed to the vertically-sliding box or hand-piece E. When the hand-piece E is pressed downward the operation of cutting or stamping out the bretzel from the dough will be performed. Upon the rising of the die, effected automatically by the spring, the studs, whose lower ends, as above stated, project a short distance below the die in its elevated position, will expel the plastic bretzel from the die should it have a tendency to adhere or stick to it. The die can also be readily applied as well to a cylindrical surface as to other surfaces, and used in any number desired. Cams or other suitable devices may be employed in lieu of the hand, for operating the dies. We are aware that the form of the creasers can be changed without departing from the principle of our invention.

[ 137 U.S. Page 25]

     The product of the die herein shown is not herein claimed, as it will be made the subject matter of a subsequent application. The cutter herein shown is adapted, by means of the feet or projections b' on the base B, to be moved upon a flat surface and over the dough, and to cut from the same bretzels, which being left upon a flat surface after cutting are not so liable to become misshaped as when cut by rotary cutters as heretofore, and, by the additional creasers a a, and the novel creasers a a, perfect semblance to a hand-made twisted bretzel is produced, while the creaser heretofore used, as a, does not produce the desired result. Each die has three off-bearing scrap-passages, a, which pick up the internal scraps and deliver them into the box or hand-piece E. It will be observed that our dies form two kinds of scrap -- to wit, connected scraps and internal scraps, the latter being picked up by the dies, and, after passing through the channels a, are delivered into the box E, or other suitable receiver. We are aware that it is not new to cut lozenges by means of a plate having a series of tubes which cut the lozenges, leaving a connected scrap, the lozenges being carried upward in the tubes; also, that it is old to cut bretzels by means of dies which at once deliver the internal scraps, as they are cut, into one of the cylinders which carry the dies.


"Having thus fully described our invention, we claim and desire to secure ...

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