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Publication numberUS2598987 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJun 3, 1952
Filing dateMar 15, 1949
Priority dateMar 15, 1949
Publication numberUS 2598987 A, US 2598987A, US-A-2598987, US2598987 A, US2598987A
InventorsFranzen Gilbert E
Original AssigneeFranzen Gilbert E
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Spoon cover
US 2598987 A
Images(1)
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

June 3, 1952 G. E. F'RANZEN 2,598,987

SPOON COVER Filed March 15, 1949 0465?? E Fem/26w,

IN V EN TOR.

HTTOQA/EV Patented June 3, 1952 UNITED STATES PATENT OFFICE SPOON COVER Gilbert E. Franzen, Garden Grove, Calif.

Application March 15, 1949, Serial No. 81,571

3 Claims. (Cl. 229-43) My invention relates generally to covers or lids for food containers and more particularly to a cover which has an integral element thereon adapted to become a spoon bowl upon removal from the container, and form with the cover a convenient spoon.

Such a device is especially useful in the marketing of individual portions of ice cream or similar products. Heretofore, a separate spoon has been supplied for use in eating the food product, and in addition to the expense of the service, the handling of these easily lost and contaminated articles is a great inconvenience to the vendor.

By combining the cover and spoon two major improvements are made; th unit cost of the product is reduced, and a better service to the consumer is provided. Accordingly, a practical solution has long been sought and many such devices have been proposed. No commercially successful device has ever been provided, and the failure of those proposed can be attributed to the fact that they do not form a practical or desirable spoon.

In order to be useful the device must meet several inharmonious requirements. As a cover, the device must function to adequately seal the contents of the package, and for this purpose the desired shape is Often a flat circular disk. When formed as a spoon the device should have the general shape of a conventional spoon including a bowl and a handle, since if it merely forms an oversize scoop, or a shapeless paddle it will not be a proper or desirable utensil for eating. During its use the spoon must have sufficient rigidity to withstand the bending stresses imposed upon it, and because it is often used to remove hard frozen products, the leading or cutting edge thereof should be properly shaped so that excessive manual force need not be applied. A mandatory requirement is that the contact surfaces be delivered in a clean and sterile condition to the consumer, and it is further desirable that in the formation and use of the spoon, the fingers of the user should not become soiled by contact with the wet surfaces of the cover. Still other factors are important, as a design which will permit the use of a low cost paper material and be adapted to simple mass production methods, and it is apparent that if these and other requirements are not met, the device will fail to be a practical spoon.

Accordingly, it is the major object of my invention to provide a devicewhich meets the requirements of both a cover and spoon by its new and novel combination and arrangement of elements.

Another object of my invention is to provide a combination cover and. spoon having great resist-,' ance to bending stresses because of its unique design and construction.

It is a further object of my invention to pro-,- vide a device which may be easily transformed from a cover to a spoon without complicated directions or folding.

Still another object of my invention is to provide a device which is adapted to be modified into many difierent shapes and sizes to fit a variety of packaging needs.

A still further object of my invention is to provide a combined cover and spoon which is delivered to the consumer with the bowl portion thereof in an absolutely clean and sterile condition.

These and other objects and advantages of my invention will become apparent from the following description of preferred and modified forms thereof, and from an inspection of the accompanying drawings in which:

Fig. 1 is a perspective view of a preferred form of my invention shown in place as a closure for a food container;

Fig. 2 is a plan view of the inner face of the device showing the scoring lines thereon Fig. 3 is a cross-section taken along the line 33 of Fig. 2; V

Fig. 4 is a side elevation of the device in its operative position as a spoon;

Fig. 5 is a perspective view of the device showing the manner in which it is held in the hand of the user;

Fig. 6 is a partial plan view of an optionalform of the device; and

Fig. '1 is a partial plan view of another modified form of the device.

Referring now to the drawings and particularly to Fig. 1 thereof, the numeral I0 indicates a food container or cup of generally cylindrical shape. The cup l0 may be of any desired shape or size and forms no part of my invention, the illustrated shape merely being one which is conventional and widely used in the art. A cover H has a body member formed as a lid or circular disk l2 to engage with the inner cylindrical wall of the cup I0 and form a closure, preventing loss or contamination of the food product therein. On an ed e of the disk I2 is a projecting element l3 which is adapted to form a. spoonbowl, and at an opposed position on the circumference of the disk is a small projecting tab [4. When the lid member I2 is placed in the cup Hi, the element I3 is folded downwardly into the interior of the cup, and the tab [4 is folded upwardly as is best seen in Fig. 1. In this position, both the element l3 andthe tab I4 are folded along the normal edge Or perimeter of the lid I2 to allow the latter to conform to the Wall of the cup III for sealing engagement therewith. To permit positive and even displacement of the element I3, a score line I! is provided inwardly of the element along the normal perimeter of the lid I2, as will be described hereinafter. It can thus be seen that the cover II adequately performs its function as a closure in a manner similar to a conventional cover, there being no interference because of the element I3. It should also be noted that before the removal of the cover II the entire element I3 is sealed within the interior of the cup I0, and thus remains in a clean and sanitary condition.

When the tab I4 is grasped and pulled, the

the projecting element I3. As is best seen in Figs. 4 and 5, the sector l8 and the element I3 are deflected upwardly from the central score line I9, and the sharp corner folds of the material along the score lines I5 and I6 act as spreaders to keep the mouth of the element I3 open and flat enough to form a desirable bowl shape. The stresses acting along the score lines I5 and I6 are a function of the vertex angle of the triangular sector I8 and should. be sufiicient to cause a substantial arching of the sector IB and element I3. It has been found that the vertex angle indicated at 22 should normally be approximately 60 for the best operation of the device. If the angle 22 is body or lid I2 pivots upwardly about the score line I! and element I3 until it is in a generally vertical position. If the food product in the cup I0 isin a solid or frozen state, it willresistmovement of the element I3 embedded therein until the lid I2 is vertical. At this time, a slight additional upward pull on the tab I I will be sufii cient to dislodge the element I3 which now slides free" without removing any of the food product.

From the vertical position, the cover II is further rotated about a horizontal axis until it is in an inverted position and the inner; face of the disk I2 (lower face in Fig. 1) becomes the upper face of the: disk as seen in Figs. 2, 4 and 5. This face of the disk I2, as may best be seen in Fig. 2, has converging score lines I5 and I6 extending inwardly from the corner junctions of the element I3 with the perimeter of the disk to form a triangularsector I8 bounded outwardly by the score line I! which'is an are or chord along the perimeter of the lid. From the vertex formed by the score lines I5 and I6 a single score line I9 extends diametrically across the disk I2 to divide the remaining area of the disk into two equal sectors and 2|. It is preferable that the tab I4 should not be at the extremity of the score line I9, and it is therefore offset slightly, the exact position being immaterial so long-as it remai generally opposite to the element I 3.

All of the scfore lines may be formed Very simply as a stamping operation during the manufacture of the cover II, the material of the cover bein one of lowcost which is impressionable, such as a heavy paper.

the score line I9, and many suitable types of score lines should be of sufficient depth to allow easy unidirectional deflection of the elements, but the exact depth and shape thereof will depend upon thematerial selected. 7

After the cover I I; has been inverted the sectors 2Iland 2| are folded together along the score line I9 and the converging score lines I5 and I6, as is best seen in Fig. 5. Since the score lines are on the inner face of the disk I2 they allow inward deflection but resist deflection in the other direction. Hence, formation of the device is very simple, and tests have shown that without any instructions, the user will readily grasp the principle involved and fold the sectors 20 and 2| properly.

After the one step of folding, the device is transformed into a spoon, the sectors 20 and ZI' forming a handle, while the element I3 forms. a spoonbowl. Because of their spaced relationship, the outer extremities of' the lines I5 and I 6 are drawn upwardly, thereby inducing an upward conical curvature in the triangular sector Id. and J 7 It is desirable that the grain of the material extend longitudinally parallelwith.

' element I3 project. from acorner of a generally materially larger, the resulting stresses may cause a failure of the material. and if the angle 22 is much smaller, the element I3 will not have a desirable bowl shape. It should be noted that the outer shape of the sectors 20 and 2I does not affect the transformation of. the cover II in any way. Accordingly';, the cover II may be made'in many different shapes and sizes without changing the practicability of the spoon.

The curvature induced in the triangular sector I3 and the element I3" gives the device great resistance to bending stresses while in operation. As seen in Fig. 5,v the fingers of the user hold the sectors 23 and 2I' together while the element I3 is dipped into the food product packed in the cup Ill. Because of its generally cylindrical curve-.- ture, the element I3 strongly resists either. upward or downward deflection, andmay there,- fore be used to dig. or scoop the food product exactly the same way as can be done with a conventional metal spoon. In the form shown in Fig. 5, the score line I! is arched both outwardly and upwardly to prevent any upward deflection. of the element I3 therealong. Since .thescore. line I! is on the upper surface of, theldisk I2. it is almost impossible to deflect. the element I3. downwardly, and thus the largest stresses created by a scooping movement of the device are. most strongly resisted.

The element I3 has a rounded forward edge.

23 to form a cuttingsurface, and in. the preferred. form is shaped quite, similar to. a conventional. spoon bowl. Other shapes of the .edge 23 may be used as desired, as, for example the edgemay be serrated to provide a, series of prongsor. tines.

to allow the device to be used as a fork so long as the basic structural characteristics of the device are maintained.

In Fig. 6 is shown an optional form of the, device to be used when. it is desired that. the element I3 project from, a side of a lid I2..bounded by straight edges. A. straight score line Ila bounds the outer edge of the triangular sector.

I8 so that the latter may conform to the normal perimeter of the. lid I2. The. other scorelines. I5, I6, and I9. are. the same as. those. used. the

preferred form and, theoperationof. the device is The. use of. an. outwardly curved score polygonal lid I2. 7 Two angledscore lines.- I-lband.

I'Ic bound the outer edge of a sector |8a which..-

is quadrilateral in shape and correspond to the triangular sector l8. The angle between the score lines Nb and H0 is the regular interior angle of the polygonal lid 12, and thus the sector [Ba conforms to the normal perimeter of the lid l2 and in no way interferes with the use of the lid as a closure. The other score lines I5, (6, and [9 are the same as those used in the preferred form and the operation of the device is identical. The outwardly angled score lines [lb and l'lc tend to resist upward deflection of the element I3 as does the curved score line H in the preferred form, and again the major resistance to either upward or downward deflection is provided by the conical curvature induced into the element [3 and sector l8a.

The form of the device to be used depends, of course, upon the shape of the lid l 2 and the container ID. All of the form embody the advantages of simplicity, rigidity, and ease of formation as previously set forth. Again, it should be noted that the device is delivered to the user in a clean and sanitary condition. The entire element I3 and the interior face of the disk l2 are sealed within the cup, and thus there is no chance of contamination.

While I have shown and described in some detail the preferred embodiment of my invention, it is to be understood that such details are not restrictive and that various changes in design and construction may be made without departing from the scope of my invention as defined in the appended claims.

I claim:

1. A cover for use with a food container comprising: a flat cover member having a contour for edge engagement with said container; score lines on the inner face of said cover member converging inwardly from the edge of said member to form a triangular sector; a single score line extending across the inner face of said cover member from the vertex of said converging lines to cooperate therewith and facilitate an inward folding of said member to form a handle; a transverse score line on said cover member extending between the spaced ends of said convergent score lines; and an integral acutely curved element extending from the edge of said cover member between the spaced ends of said convergent score lines, and inwardly defined by said transverse score line, said element being deflectible from the plane of said member alon said transverse score line to a displaced position disposing said element entirely within said container, said element being movable from said displaced position to an operating position substantially aligned with the initial plane of said score lines in response to folding of said member to form a handle, and said element having a curvature induced thereacross by said folding to resist deflection from said operating position.

2. A cover for use with a food container comprising: a flat cover member of deformable material having a contour for edge engagement with said container; score lines on the inner face of said cover member converging inwardly from the edge of said member to form a triangular sector; a single score line extending across the inner face of said cover member from the vertex of said converging lines to cooperate therewith and facilitate an inward folding of said member to form a handle with said member being forced out- 6 wardly along said converging score lines and deformed sharply therearound to induce a conical curvature in said triangular sector; a transverse score line on said cover member extending between the spaced ends of said convergent score lines; and an integral element extending from the edge of said cover member between the spaced ends of said convergent score lines, and inwardly defined by said transverse score line, said element having the outline of a spoonbowl, and being defiectible from the plane of said member along said transverse score line to a displaced position disposing said element entirely within said container, said element being movable from said displaced position to an operating position substantially aligned with the initial plane of said score lines in response to folding of said member to form a handle, and said element having a bowllike curvature induced therein by said folding to resist deflection from said operating position and form a suitable eating implement.

3. A cover for use with a food container comprising: a disk member of deformable material having a contour for edge engagement with said container; score lines on the inner face of said disk member converging inwardly from the edge of said member to form a triangular sector; a single score line extending across the inner face of said disk member from the vertex of said converging lines to cooperate therewith and facilitate an inward folding of said member to form a handle with said member being forced outwardly along said converging score lines and deformed sharply therearound to induce a conical curvature in said triangular sector; a transverse score line on said disk member extending between the spaced ends of said convergent score lines and conforming to the normal contour of said disk member; an integral element extending from the edge of said disk member between the spaced ends of said convergent score lines, and inwardly defined by said transverse score line, said element having the outline of a spoonbowl, and being deflectible from the plane of said member along said transverse score line to a displaced position disposing said element entirely within said container, said element being movable from said displaced position to an operating position substantially aligned with the initial plane of said score lines in response to folding of said member to form a handle, and said element having a bowl-like curvature induced therein by said folding to resist deflection from said operating position and form a suitable eating implement; and a small projecting tab on said disk member spaced generally opposite to said element and defiectible from the plane of said member to an exposed position in which said tab may be readily grasped to remove said member from said container.

GILBERT FRANZEN.

REFERENCES CITED The following references are of record in the file of this patent:

UNITED STATES PATENTS Number Name Date 1,625,335 Schneider Apr. 19, 1927 1,633,605 Prudden June 28, 1927 2,375,266 Wilson May 8, 1945 2,453,393 Wilson Nov. 9, 1948

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US1625335 *Dec 14, 1925Apr 19, 1927Schneider William GContainer cover
US1633605 *Jun 3, 1925Jun 28, 1927Kalix Cup CompanyContainer and cover therefor
US2375266 *Sep 7, 1943May 8, 1945Richard W WilsonCombined spoon and lid for containers
US2453393 *Sep 17, 1945Nov 9, 1948Richard W WilsonCombined spoon and lid for containers
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3107936 *May 16, 1962Oct 22, 1963Dale L ParsonsCollapsible measuring scoop
US3183101 *Jul 31, 1962May 11, 1965Peters LeoPatty package in combination with serving means
US3380307 *Feb 7, 1966Apr 30, 1968Stuart & Co Inc C HLid scoop
US3828999 *Oct 24, 1972Aug 13, 1974Humphrey DPackage including disposable utensil
US3931925 *Apr 5, 1974Jan 13, 1976Ruff Stanley LPaperboard container lid convertible into a spoon
US3955742 *Feb 24, 1975May 11, 1976Marshall Paul WContainer lid with integral removable eating utensil
US4060176 *Aug 8, 1975Nov 29, 1977Tobiasson John RContainer lid-spoon combination
US4393988 *Jul 15, 1981Jul 19, 1983Mary BurkeSpoon lid
US5419049 *Sep 8, 1994May 30, 1995Macarthur-Onslow; Rohan J.Foldable eating utensil
US5695084 *Aug 16, 1996Dec 9, 1997Chmela; John F.Disposable one-piece container closure and eating utensil
US6068114 *Aug 23, 1999May 30, 2000Kraft Canada, Inc.Container package with spoons
US7275652 *Oct 7, 2003Oct 2, 2007Morris Jeffrey MCup lid apparatus
US8210381Nov 14, 2006Jul 3, 2012Ecotensil Inc.Folding eating utensil integrated or attachable to food cover
US8695828Jun 20, 2012Apr 15, 2014Ecotensil Inc.Constructible eating utensil with scoop from foldable blank
EP2129592A2 *Nov 13, 2007Dec 9, 2009Peggy CrossFolding eating utensil integrated or attachable to food cover
WO1996011858A1 *Oct 13, 1995Apr 25, 1996Alois MosimannCover for beaker or tin-shaped containers
WO2008061080A2 *Nov 13, 2007May 22, 2008Peggy CrossFolding eating utensil integrated or attachable to food cover
Classifications
U.S. Classification215/228, 229/125.3, 30/122, 229/401, 229/160.2
International ClassificationB65D77/10, B65D51/24, B65D77/20
Cooperative ClassificationB65D51/246, B65D2577/205, B65D77/2016
European ClassificationB65D77/20B3, B65D51/24H