US 2785551 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
March 19, 1957 H. A. HOLZWARTH EIAL 2,785,551
cup HOLDER Filed Sept. 9, 1953 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 E'Jg. 2
I EVE-27.727115 Han/4r A. b oLzwAgr/r fa w B M54 March 19, 1957 H. A. HOLZWARTH ETAL CUP HOLDER Filed se t. 9, 1953 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 United States Patent Freeport, N. Y., assignors to Dixie Cup Company, Easton,Pa., a corporation of Delaware Application September 1953, Serial No. 379,234
8 Claims. (Cl. 65 61) This invention relates to a cup holder and method of making the same, and more particularly to a holder for preformed, flexible walled temporary'vessels, commonly made of paper, and of the character utilized in the dispensing of water, soft drinks, other beverages, sodas, and the like, although the invention may have other uses and purposes as will be apparent to one skilled in the art.
The holder embodied in this invention is preferably 'of the pickup type. A pickup holder is one having cup engaging or gripping means therein which automatically engage the cup wall upon a relative axial movement between the cup and holder, the engagement being with sufficient tenacity to retain the cup in the holder against accidental dislodgement before,- during and after use. In other words, the cup is held in the holder until it is intentionally dislodged therefrom.
Pickup holders of this character are most frequently utilized with temporary vessels, such as p ap er cups, of the character usually destroyed after a single usage. It has been found desirable, both for durability and effective gripping engagement upon. the cup, to provide a cup holder with inwardly extending fingers or teeth that flex with the entering cup and then exert the gripping action upon the cup. Such gripping or retaining means have not. heretofore been integral with the wall of the holder but comprised an extra insert, and means had to be provided to hold the member properly in position, retain it in position while it is acting upon a cup, and in some cases permit its removal and replacement should it become damaged. That is objectionably expensive manufacture.
In the past, too, certain types of cup holders have been molded, although never with gripping or retaining means of the character above described. Such holders have been molded from a thermosetting plastic material having poor impact strength, and also from metal, also objectionably expensive. Economy in the manufacture of holders of this character is highly desirable, if not essential, since in many cases such holders have been distributed to the users on a non-profit basis, and even at a slight loss In additionit may be mentioned that holders of this character heretofore known were decidedly limited as to color.
With the foregoing in mind, it is an important object of the instant invention to provide a pickup holder for.
temporary vessels such as paper cups, which holder is equipped with pickup and retaining means comprising flexible teeth integral with the holder wall.
Another object of the invention is the provision of a pickup holder for paper cups and the like embodying retaining means in the form of normally laterally extending teeth, which teeth are sufliciently flexible to yield with an entering cup and yet of sufficient strength to indent the wall of that cup when gripping the same, such retaining teeth being integral with the holder wall.
Itis also an objectof this invention to provide a holder for paper cups and the like having flexible retaining teeth therein, which holder is molded entirely in one piece.
Patented Mar. 19, 1957 Another feature of the invention resides in the provision of a holder for paper cups and the like, which holder is injection molded of nylon.
Still a further featureofthe invention. resides in the provision of a pickup holder for paper cups and the like embodying cupretaining means in the form of flexible inwardlyextending teeth, and which holder is molded in its entirety in one piece of a thermoplastic material.
Also an object of the invention is the provision of a molded holder for paper cups and the like, which may readily be made in any desirable color.
It is a further object of the invention to provide a new 7 and novel method of making a holder for paper cups and the like.
While some of the more salient features, characteristics and advantages of the instant invention have been above pointed out, others will become apparent from the following disclosures, taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings, in which- Figure 1 is a side elevational view of a holder embodying principles of the instant invention, with a paper cup properly seated therein;
Figure 2 is an enlarged central vertical sectional view of the holder of Fig. l, the cup being shown in side elevation and partially in vertical section;
Figure 3 is a fragmentary vertical sectional view of the holder of Fig. 2 with the cup removed;
Figure 4 is a top. plan view of the holder alone;
Figure 5 is a bottom plan view of the holder alone; and
Figure 6 is a bottom plan view of a holder embodying principles ofthis invention, but of slightly different con struction, andillustrating a variation in the method of making the holder.
As shown on the drawings:
For convenience in illustration and disclosure, the
instant invention has been shown and described hereinof the proper shape for picking up and retaining a conical paper cup. Theillustrated embodiment of the holder includes a body portion 1 and a perfectly flared base portion 2. The body portion has a cup receiving cavity 3 therein shaped complementally to the wall of the cup it is to receive. At the junction between the body portion 1 and the base portion 2 the holder is provided with a substantially internally cylindrical neck portion as indicated at inorder to provide a space between the holder wall and the apical portion of a paper cup. Adjacent the bottom of the cup receiving cavity is the pickup and retaining means in the form of separated normally laterally extending teeth or fingers 5 shaped to define a central open portion 6. to facilitate the seatingof the cup inthe holderand the, engagement of the retaining means with the lower portion ofthe cup.
In Figs. 1 and 2 l have illustrated a conical paper cup 7 seated in the holder andby comparing the showing in Fig. 3. with the showing in Fig. 2, it will be noted that when the cup is engaged by the retaining means, the re taining means flex downwardly. In other words, these retaining teeth .yield somewhat with an entering cup, but are. of suiiicient strength, notwithstanding their flexibility, to preferably indent the wall of the cup as indicatedat 3 in Fig. 210 renderthe gripping action stronger. Normally, that is without a cup'being in the holder,
the gripping elements ,5 are disposed susbtantially in the denting of the cup wall when engaged by the retaining elements, is such as to increase the length of contact between the adjacent side of each tooth and the cup wall.
Should the gripping teeth, by poor manipulation on the part of the operator, engage the apical portion of the cup with sufficient firmness to pick up the cup and hold it against accidental dislodgement, but without the cup being fully'seated in the holder, the cup is nevertheless stabilized by an annular series of evenly spaced projections 9 on the inside wall of the holder adjacent the mouth end thereof. These projections 9 amount, in the illustrated instance, to a thickening of the wall at spaced points, and so will contact and stabilize an insufficiently or incompletely seated cup. If the cup is completely seated in the holder, by virtue of its flexible wall, it will conform itself to the stabilizing projections 9 as illustrated in Fig. 2.
In use, it is a simple expedient for an operator to grasp the holder in his hand, axially move the holder over the terminal cup in a stack of cups, whereupon gripping engagement of the retaining elements is automatically effected, and the cup is removed along with the holder. After usage of the cup, it is a simple expedient for the operator to press his thumb against the apex of the cup or the bottom of it through the base of the holder and eject the cup.
It will be noted from the foregoing description that the entire holder may effectively be molded in a single piece, including the retaining elements 5. Preferably this is accomplished by injection molding. In fact, the surface 4 in the throat of the holder is not exactly vertical, but actually tapers to the extent of a degree or so to facilitate withdrawal of the forming dies. Molding the holder in its entirety in one piece is an extremely economical method of manufacture of the holder.
Preferably the material of the holder or the material from which the holder is molded, is nylon. That material, which has never been utilized for the present purpose as to our knowledge, has definite advantages over any other material now avaliable. Nylon is an excellent material for injection molding; it has excellent tensile strength, excellent compression strength, excellent flexual strength, and excellent impact strength; it has long wearing qualities, is extremely tough, and its surface hardness resists scratching and abrasive actions; it possesses good heat resistance; it is not adversely affected by weak acids or strong alkalies and is highly resistant to common organic solvents; and its color possibilities are unlimited, the colors being extremely fast, only discoloring slightly when subjected to strong sunlight, a condition which should not occur when the holder is in ordinary use.
Insofar as is now known, there is no equivalent substitute for nylon for this purpose. Should a substitute have to be selected, perhaps the best second choice would be a thermoplastic resin such as polyethylene, but that material does not possess all of the above attributes, and possesses very few of them to the extent nylon does.
Nylon readily permits the molding of the relatively thin and flexible gripping elements 5 integral with the wall of the holder, and from the showing in Figs. 2 and 3 itwill be noted that these elements are considerably thinner than any portion of the wall structure. Thus, by the use of nylon as a medium for molding the entire holder in one piece, not only is an extremely economical holder produced, but also a holder that is of a superior character and quality in substantially all desirable aspects.
In Fig. 6 we have indicated a slightly different method of making the holder. The holder of Fig. 6- is of the same overall shape, size, and character as that above described, and is also molded in a single piece, preferably of nylon. However, in this instance, a transverse partition or membrane 14) is molded across the throat portion of the holder, this membrane being solid when the holder is removed fro-m the molding dies. Thereafter, with the use of suitable cutting tools, the membrane or partition 10 is severed along the dotted lines indicated at 11, with the inside portion being removed entirely. This severing operation defines a series of gripping elements or cup engaging teeth 12. In this instance we have illustrated three such retaining teeth, rather than four as in the previously described embodiment, to indicate that the particular number of teeth used is not essential. It will be understood that if so desired the retaining element arrangement shown in Figs. 4 and 5 may also be made by this method, namely the molding of a solid partition, and the severance of the partition hereafter to define the set of gripping elements. In the showing in Fig. 6, the teeth are again preferably generally triangular in shape, with the longer side attached to the holder, and the three teeth shown in this figure will function the same as the four teeth above described when picking up and retaining a cup in the holder.
From the foregoing, it is apparent that we have provided a simple, economical and durable holder for temporary vessels, which holder may be cast in one single piece, preferably of nylon, and which embodies flexible retaining elements also cast unitarily with the holder.
It will be understood that modifications and variations may be effected without departing from the scope of the novel concepts of the present invention.
We claim as our invention:
1. A unitary holder for a preformed flexible-walled conical paper cup, including a body portion having a conical cavity therein to receive the cup with the apex extending beyond the conical cavity wall, a flared base portion, and a substantially cylindrical throat portion between the body and base and through which the apical part of the cup freely extends, and a plurality of inwardly extending teeth integral with the throat portion of the holder to grip the apical portion of a cup seated in said cavity said teeth sloping downwardly when engaged by a cup.
2. A holder for a preformed flexible-walled conical paper cup, including a body portion having a conical cavity therein to receive the cup with the apex extending beyond the conical cavity wall, a flared base portion, and a substantially cylindrical throat portion between the body and base and through which the apical part of the cup freely extends, and a plurality of normally laterally extending flexible teeth integrally formed with the throat portion of the holder to grip the apical portion of a cup in said cavity, said teeth sloping downwardly when engaged by a cup, the entire holder being molded in onepiece of nylon.
3. A unitarily constructed paper cup holder having a body portion with a cup receiving compartment therein, a base portion, a substantially cylindrical throat portion of reduced cross-sectional area connecting said body and base portions, said throat embodying a vertical internal cylindrical wall, and a plurality of cup gripping elements projecting inwardly from said throat portion adjacent the lowermost extremity of said cylindrical wall and being integrally formed therewith, said gripping elements flexing downwardly below said throat portion when engaged by a cup thereby indenting the cup wall enhancing the grip thereon. V
4. A one-piece paper cup holder, including a body portion having a cup receiving cavity therein, a base portion, a throat portion embodying a vertical cylindrical wall connecting said body and base portions, and separated flexible teeth integrally connected to the body portion adjacent the lower end of the throat portion to engage the lower portion of a cup seated in the holder, said teeth sloping downwardly when engaged with a cup, the entire holder being molded solely of a thermoplastic material.
5. A one-piece paper cup holder, including a body portion having a cup receiving cavity therein, a base portion, a throat portion embodying substantially a vertical cylindrical wall connecting said body and base portions, and nor mally laterally extending separated flexible teeth integrally connected to the body portion adjacent the lower end of the throat portion to engage the lower portion of a cup seated in the holder, the entire holder being molded solely of a thermoplastic material, said teeth being considerably thinner than the holder wall to flex with an entering cup but of sufiicient strength to indent the wall of the cup and increase the gripping power thereof.
6. A holder for a preformed flexible walled conical paper cup, including a body portion having a cup receiving cavity therein, a base portion, a substantially vertical cylindrical throat portion between said body portion and base portion, and laterally extending flexible teeth integrally connected to the body portion adjacent the lower end of the throat portion to engage and hold a cup seated in the cavity, said teeth sloping downwardly when engaged by a cup, the entire holder being unitarily molded solely of nylon.
7. A holder for a preformed flexible walled conical paper cup, including a body portion having a cup receiving cavity therein of generally conical shape, a base portion, a throat portion between said body and base portions, and normally laterally extending flexible teeth integrally connected with the throat portion adjacent the lower end of said throat portion to engage and hold a cup seated in the cavity, said teeth having sufficient strength to deform the wall of the cup enhancing the grip thereon, the entire holder being molded solely in one piece, said teeth each being substantially triangular in shape with the longest side being connected with the wall of said throat portion. 7
8. A holder for a preformed flexible walled conical paper cup, including a body portion having a conical cavity therein to receive the cup with the apex extending beyond the conical cavity wall, a flared base portion, a substantially cylindrical throat portion between the body and base and through which the apical part of the cup freely extends, a plurality of inwardly projecting flexible teeth integrally formed with the inner wall of said throat portion and extending adjacent the lowermost portion thereof, said teeth indenting the apical portion of the cup and sloping downwardly thereby enhancing the grip thereof, the holder wall at the month end of said cavity being inwardly thickened at spaced points, and the entire holder being molded solely in one piece.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,680,823 Teed Aug. 14, 1928 1,895,738 Shugg et al. Jan. 31, 1933 1,957,263 Gray May 1, 1934 2,323,356 Rosay July 6, 1943 2,355,744 Myers Aug. 15, 1944 2,483,166 Amberg Sept. 27, 1949 2,486,907 Amberg et al. Nov. 1, 1949 2,487,712 Johnson et a1. Nov. 8, 1949 2,509,132 Carew May 23, 1950 2,509,134 Carew May 23, 1950 2,570,954 Kasman Oct. 9, 1951 FOREIGN PATENTS 9,676 Great Britain Apr. 29, 1903 413,744 Germany May 15, 1925 OTHER REFERENCES Plastics Bulletin #48, vol. 12, 1950, published at Wilmington, Del., by the Poly-Chemicals Department of E. I. du Pont de Nemours & Co. Inc.,. page 191.