US 20060171608 A1
A reclosable bag includes a body and first and second reclosable seals. The body defines a storage cavity and first and second openings communicating between the storage cavity and a region external to the reclosable bag. The first reclosable seal is mounted to the body and operable to seal the first opening. The second reclosable seal is mounted to the body and operable to seal the second opening.
1. A reclosable bag, comprising:
a body defining a storage cavity, the body defining first and second openings communicating between the storage cavity and a region external to the reclosable bag;
a first reclosable seal mounted to the body and operable to seal the first opening; and
a second reclosable seal mounted to the body and operable to seal the second opening.
2. The reclosable bag of
3. The reclosable bag of
4. The reclosable bag of
5. The reclosable bag of
6. The reclosable bag of
7. The reclosable bag of
a male portion including at least one protruding rib; and
a female portion including sidewalls defining a channel, the protruding rib interfacing with the channel to interlock the male and female portions.
8. The reclosable bag of
9. A method for storing an item having a grain in a reclosable bag having a body defining a storage cavity, first and second openings communicating with the storage cavity, and first and second reclosable seals mounted to the body for sealing the first and second openings, comprising:
opening at least the first reclosable seal;
inserting the item in a direction with the grain through the first opening into the storage cavity; and
closing the first and second reclosable seals.
10. The method of
opening at least the second seal; and
moving the item out of the storage cavity and through the second opening in the direction with the grain.
The present invention relates generally to reclosable plastic bags and, more particularly, to a reclosable plastic bag having multiple openings.
Reclosable plastic bags are well known and are generally formed of plastic, such as polyethylene, and having a bottom and sides with an open mouth that is closed by a resealing zipper. Zippers are typically plastic strips, one side having a sized and shaped channel extending the length thereof and the other side having a protruding rib which is pushed into the channel on the opposite side to provide a seal between the sides covering the mouth of the bag. The bags can thereby be repeatedly opened and closed.
Reclosable bags have many uses, including storage of items having varying shapes and sizes. Such bags are especially useful for storing and cataloging items because the bags are transparent and the contents can be easily seen. Also, a hole may be defined in the top lip of the bag to allow the bag, or multiple bags, to be stored or displayed on a peg hook. Reclosable bags are reusable and protect the items stored therein from the environment.
When an item is placed in a reclosable bag, it is inserted in one direction and removed in the reverse direction. However, certain items that may be stored in such bags have a natural grain that may result in the item being damaged when it is either inserted or removed from the bag against that grain. For example, a model coniferous tree typically has branches that slope upward towards the tip of the tree. The tree may be inserted into the bag trunk first, but when it is removed, it must be pulled out tip first, against the grain of the branches. This movement against the grain can damage the branches.
Another such item having a natural grain is a feather. For example, fly tying products, such as rooster and hen hackle, is such a feather. Fly tying hackle is an animal product that has a prominent grain. Hackle is usually sold and stored as a full or half cape, and the feathers are still attached to the bird's skin. Removal of the feathers against their grain from a reclosable bag, even if care is exercised, eventually creates damaged feathers.
Thus, it would be desirable to provide a reclosable bag that allows items to be inserted and removed without going against the natural grain of the item, thereby reducing the likelihood that the item will be damaged, while still providing the protective and convenient features of such bags.
This section of this document is intended to introduce various aspects of art that may be related to various aspects of the present invention described and/or claimed below. This section provides background information to facilitate a better understanding of the various aspects of the present invention. It should be understood that the statements in this section of this document are to be read in this light, and not as admissions of prior art.
The present inventors have recognized that a reclosable bag may be provided with multiple openings disposed at different ends of the storage cavity to allow items stored therein to be inserted and removed from the bag without going against the natural grain of the item.
One aspect of the present invention is seen in a reclosable bag including a body and first and second reclosable seals. The body defines a storage cavity and first and second openings communicating with the storage cavity. The first reclosable seal is mounted to the body and operable to seal the first opening. The second reclosable seal is mounted to the body and operable to seal the second opening.
Another aspect of the present invention is seen in a method for storing an item having a grain in a reclosable bag. The reclosable bag has a body defining a storage cavity, first and second openings communicating between the storage cavity and a region external to the reclosable bag, and first and second reclosable seals mounted to the body for sealing the first and second openings. The method includes opening at least the first reclosable seal. The item is inserted in a direction with the grain through the first opening into the storage cavity. The first and second reclosable seals are closed.
These and other objects, advantages and aspects of the invention will become apparent from the following description. The particular objects and advantages described herein may apply to only some embodiments falling within the claims and thus do not define the scope of the invention. In the description, reference is made to the accompanying drawings which form a part hereof, and in which there is shown a preferred embodiment of the invention. Such embodiment does not necessarily represent the full scope of the invention and reference is made, therefore, to the claims herein for interpreting the scope of the invention.
The invention will hereafter be described with reference to the accompanying drawings, wherein like reference numerals denote like elements, and:
While the invention is susceptible to various modifications and alternative forms, specific embodiments thereof have been shown by way of example in the drawings and are herein described in detail. It should be understood, however, that the description herein of specific embodiments is not intended to limit the invention to the particular forms disclosed, but on the contrary, the intention is to cover all modifications, equivalents, and alternatives falling within the spirit and scope of the invention as defined by the appended claims.
One or more specific embodiments of the present invention will be described below. It is specifically intended that the present invention not be limited to the embodiments and illustrations contained herein, but include modified forms of those embodiments including portions of the embodiments and combinations of elements of different embodiments as come within the scope of the following claims. It should be appreciated that in the development of any such actual implementation, as in any engineering or design project, numerous implementation-specific decisions must be made to achieve the developers' specific goals, such as compliance with system-related and business related constraints, which may vary from one implementation to another. Moreover, it should be appreciated that such a development effort might be complex and time consuming, but would nevertheless be a routine undertaking of design, fabrication, and manufacture for those of ordinary skill having the benefit of this disclosure. Nothing in this application is considered critical or essential to the present invention unless explicitly indicated as being “critical” or “essential.”
Referring now to the drawings wherein like reference numbers correspond to similar components throughout the several views and, specifically, referring to
In the illustrated embodiment, the reclosable seals 24, 26 are thermally welded to the body 12. Holes 28 may be disposed in the body 12 proximate one or more of the ends 18, 22 to allow the reclosable bag 10 to be hung on a peg hook for storage or display.
In the illustrated embodiment, the body 12 defines a generally rectangular shape, however, the present invention is not limited at any particular geometry. Moreover, although the openings 16, 20 and seals 24, 26 are illustrated as extending along the entire width of the body 12, other arrangements may be used. For example, the openings 16, 20 and seals 24, 26 could be disposed to cut across opposing corners of the body 12. The geometry of the reclosable bag 10 may vary depending on the shapes and sizes of the items to be stored therein.
Turning now to
The present invention is not limited to any particular reclosable seal arrangement. For example, some reclosable seals have a slide that assists the user in mating the interlocking portions of the seal. Other types of reclosable seals employ adhesives that cooperate with or replace the mechanically interlocking seal members. Many types of reclosable seals are known in the art, and any such seal may be used. The particular seal arrangement shown in
Referring now to
The item 42 has an end 44, and the grain of the item 42 is defined in the direction away from the end 44. The item 42 is inserted through the opening 16 at the end 18 of the body 12, past the reclosable seal 24, and into the storage cavity 14. The reclosable seals 24, 26 may then be closed, thereby isolating the item 42 from the environment outside the storage cavity 14. This isolation is useful where the item 42 is organic, such as a hackle. The item 42 is protected from environmental variation, bugs, mites, etc., thereby increasing the useful life of the item 42.
Turning now to
The particular embodiments disclosed above are illustrative only, as the invention may be modified and practiced in different but equivalent manners apparent to those skilled in the art having the benefit of the teachings herein. Furthermore, no limitations are intended to the details of construction or design herein shown, other than as described in the claims below. It is therefore evident that the particular embodiments disclosed above may be altered or modified and all such variations are considered within the scope and spirit of the invention. Accordingly, the protection sought herein is as set forth in the claims below.