US 2928638 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
March 15, 19-60 B. o*c. PARKER PORTABLE PALLET AND METHOD OF FABRICATING IT Filed Dec. 27, 1955 2 Sheets-Sheet l gm? 3 LE PORTABLE PALLET AND METHOD OF FABRICATING IT Filed Dec. 27, 1955 March 15, 1960 B. on. PARKER 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 2,928,638 PORTABLE PALLET AND METHOD OF FABRICATING IT Brooks OC. Parker, New York, N .Y.
Application December 27, 1955, Serial No. 555,341
13 Claims. (Cl. 248-120) The present invention is concerned with portable platforms commonly referred to as pallets adapted to support multiple packages or articles and to serve as a carrier in the transport thereof such as by power and hand lift fork trucks. It is particularly concerned with an expendable type pallet so-called in the sense of being sufttes a en 1Q ficiently low in cost as to be economically practical for one time use where that is of importance.
. Pallets both of a definitely permanent type and expendable type have been provided and used heretofore but the various designs have failed to meet with complete satisfaction all the factors involved in the fabrica- I tion and subsequent use thereof.
To meet the varying conditions for practical use expendable pallets should possess or provide the following characteristics: they must be capable of structurally and operationally fulfilling the requirements of supporting a load of goods either packaged or loose and of receiving the forks of a fork lift truck for transport of the pallet and supported load. These conditions include the case of loaded pallets arranged in stacks. They should be of such low cost as to be properly employable for one single use in the storage or transporting of goods or both. They should be capable of being deliveredto the purchaser of the pallets at reasonably low freight charges. They should be capable of initial storage in considerable numbers at the point of use to meet sudden and varying demands Without occupation of excessive space. This latter feature may involve the further characteristic of being stored in knockdown state but capable of rapid and easy erection into final usable form.
The present invention is exceptionally adapted to meet the foregoing conditions and requirements ina highly I successful and efficient manner. The'general structural features include a pair of opposed sheets of light weight material such. as paperboard shaped and folded in a manner to provide in effect a plurality of parallel channel type. beams with the beams in one sheet extending in a direction at right angles to those in the other sheet. and the complete unit embodying a number of pedestals or columns inserted in spaced arrangement between the sheets with the ends extending into and occupying positions in the respective opposed channels. The pedestals I 1;
comprise light weight members of suitable as chipboard. I
The character of the construction results in an enieient distribution of the material or which the pallets material such are composed providing exceptional strength in relation to weight of material. The crossing vertical side walls of the channels engage at their edges andcontribute to the functioning of the pedestals in sustaining heavy static' loads as when a plurality of loaded pallets are ar ranged in stacked relation. Of particular importance is the fact that the .beam arrangement which incIudesve'rtical sections comprising the sides of the channels provides efficient resistance to bending moments which is of part cular mportancewheuthe loaded. alletis lifted-on I, 2,928,638 Patented Mar. 15, 1960 factur'e and assembly. They may be shippedto the cus- I tomer in a knocked-down .state'in the form of pre-cut and scored flat sheets and separate pedestals and quickly and easily assembled by the customer and the parts secured together to form a rigid unit by rapidly applied fastening means such as stapling.
The principle of the arrangement of parts is such that it lends itself readily to variations in construction 'to meet dilferen't conditions and requirements in particular cases". For example, the initial blanks may be varied in shape and 'so folded as to provide a plurality of plies of the sheet material in selected ones or all of the side walls of the channels, thereby to provide added strength particularly. against bending stresses. Likewise, the character of the pedestals may be independently varied correfork, such channels being presented on'both sides so that v the pallet'is reversible but in each case the load is supported on a plurality of the beams positioned between the forks and the load. On the other hand,-the forks may be readily inserted in the top channels and the load .lifted free of the pallet. The fork tines in any. caseengage in smooth walls of the channels and the pedestals are protected against injury therefrom. 7
Many other objects and advantages will be made apparent and the invention accordingly comprises the article supporting platform or pallet and the manner of fabricating it including the character of the materials from which it is made which will be exemplified in the construction hereinafter set forth and the scopeof the.
. pallet with the parts drawn isometrically;
Fig. 3 is an isometric view of a complete assembled unit;
line 4-4 of Figure 3; I
Fig. S is a vertical cross sectional view taken on th line 5-5 of Figure 3; and
Fig. 6 is a fragmentary cross sectional view taken on the line 6-6 of Figure 3 but enlarged to show some of the detail features including the stapling and character of the paperboard materials.
As shown particularly in Fig. 2 the pallet embodies three'basic components comprising two opposed sheets with a plurality of pedestals or pillars positioned between the folded sheets and arranged in a predetermined regular pattern. The lower sheet 10 is referred to for convenience as the bottom sheet and the other sheet 11- as the top sheet, but as will appear the pallet is reversible and those terms are used principally as a matter of convenience. Inserted between the sheets are a plurality of pedestals 12 having a height corresponding approximately to the over-all height of the pallet, the ends of the pedestals being arranged in channels of the lower and sheets 10 and 11.
Fig. 1 shows a sheet in fiat form prior to folding but provides I a V Fig. 4 is a vertical cross sectional view taken on the upper sheet may be one continuous section or a plurality of sections, dependent upon the particular conditions. In the present instance the sheet is initially formed in three sections which, as will appear, enables the subsequent folding to be accomplished morereadily, particularly if multiple plies are employed at certain desired sections. Thesections are indicated at 13, '14 and 15 respectively, a portion only of the section 15 is shown at the right in Figure 1,-but as may be seen in the other figures section 15 is the same as section 13 except that the parts are reversed.
'The composition of the sheet material may vary dependent upon circumstances. For mostcases it will comprise a paperboard although it may 'be practical in particular cases to employ light gauge metal. The paperboard may be one of common material for that purpose and of standardthickness. However, it isintended that the term paperboard" include various types of composition sheet material which islight weight and capable of being folded in the manner'to be describedj It may comprise oneof various kinds of cellulose materials impregnated or not impregnated with plastic materials, or it may comprise an appropriate plastic sheet material, and include if desired reenforcement. Corrugated paper is particularly advantageous for the purpose, since it provides high. strength and rigidity relative to the weight and cost. When corrugated paper is employed it should be arranged so that the flutes run transversely 'of the channels as indicated by the arrows 16 in, Figs. 1 and 3 and also, as indicated in the enlarged detail view of Fig. 6, where the cross section is taken at right angle to the flutes 17.
.In the assembled pallet the top sheet has a plurality of parallel channels of which three are employed in the particular illustrative example of the invention the channels being numbered 20, 21 and 22 respectively each with an open side facing downwardly, and the 'bottom section has three opposed parallel channels 23, 24 and '25 with the open side'facing upwardly but extending at right angles to the channels in the upper sheet. The sections or blanks are appropriately prescored as shown in Figure 1 to enable folding the sheet to form the channels. may be increased byproviding a plurality of plies at selected side walls. In the present example the channel side wall 27 at the extremeleft (Figs. 2, 3 and is composed of three layers obtained by appropriate score lines 28, 29 and 30 enabling the defined strips to be folded in continuous form as shown into the three ply edge 27 as shown particularly in Fig. 5. Adjacent the strips comprising the edge 27 is the fiat plane area 31 defined by the score lines 30 and 32, then the single ply channel side wall 33 defined by the score lines 32 and 34, then the flat plane area 35 adapted to form the bottom'of an upper channel, and then the two strip s'ec tions 36 and 37 defined by score lines which are foldable to form the channel sidewall 38 (Fig. .5). The middle section 14 also has an edge strip part 39 defined by score line 40foldable down to a vertical position parallel to strips 36 and 37 providing an edge wall at that point of three plies in the final assembly. The blank 15 is similar to and symmetrical with'the blank 13 but with the parts arranged in reverse laterally across the blank. The plies and the successive sectionsYmay be secured together in any desired manner as by cementing or mechanical stitching such as stapling as willbe described more fully hereinafter. The blank sections may embody further details and refinements; For example,
, to enable the corners to be beveled off as shown at 27 in Figs. 2 and 3, the blank 13 isrinitially provided with a sawtoothed shape as shown at 41 in Figure 1. Also the section 14 may have tabs or flaps 42 adapted to be bent downwardly adjacent to and parallel with the outside side wall of the lower sheet, as, shown particularly in Figs. 2 and 3. To enable the flaps 42 to be folded inside-of the corresponding side wall of thelower sheet;
appropriate cuts 43 extend inwardly from the edge of the blank. Also where desired appropriate U-shaped cuts 44 may be applied to the blanks to provide flap openings for the insertion of a toolto enable stapling operations to be performed.
The'lower sheet may be pre-cut and scored in exactly the Same manner as the upper sheet, but usually it will be desirable to make the lower sheet of somewhat different dimensions so as to provide apallet which 'is 'longer in one direction than the other and which when reversed will provide an arrangement of channels and fiat surfaces differing accordingly as to dimensions and proportions. In the present embodiment of the .in'vention the upper sheet is shown as .being .longer than the lower sheet, that is the channels 20, 21 and 22 are longer than the transversely extending channels 23, 24 and 25 of the lower sheet. Otherwise in the present embodiment of the invention the lower sheet is exactly like that of the upper sheet but turned over in the assembled pallet with the channels 23, 24 and 25 facing upwardly. This may be seen in the variousviews including particularly. the cross sectional view Fig. 4. As there shown the bottom sheet is composed of three see tions the first section 50 having an edge wall 51 at the extreme left of three plies and an opposite channel wall 52 of a single'ply, and the next channel has a side wall 53 composed of three plies made up of two layers derived from the first section 50 and one layer from the middle section 54. The section 55 at the right is similar to and arranged symmetrically to the section 50 at the left. The bottom sheet may also include tabs adapted to be bent upwardly as indicated at 56 in 'Figs. 2 and 5 which function similarly to the tabs 42 of the upper sheet. t
As has been briefly described heretofore the assembled unit includes a plurality of intervening pedestals 12 uniformly arranged in a particular pattern. As in the case of the sheets the pedestals may be made of a variety of materials particularly paperboard, but preferably they are The strength at the side walls of the channels composed of a material which affords considerable compressiv'e' strength. Chipboard is a relatively 'hardand strong material and is well adapted for the purpose. Likewise the shape of the pedestals may vary and bent any preferred shape for'the particular case but ingeneral it is desirable they be relatively thin walled for the most efiicient use of the material-l A hollow thin walled tubular type which may be circular, square or some other shape in cross section' is particularly practical. In any case the pedestals should have a cross dimension which corresponds to the inside width of the channel into which they extend so that the side walls will contact and fit closely against the pedestals.
As a particular advantage of the present pallet the parts may be shipped by the manufacturer to the use! normally in knocked-down condition. For example the sheets'may conveniently be shipped in fiat form either as separate sections as shown in Fig. 1 or with the section's fastened together along appropriate overlapping plies but with the plies lying flatwise in the sheet. In the latter case the section 15, for example, is fastened to the middle section 14 by folding upon each other strips 57a and 57b of section 15 and fastening the folded strips to strip 58 of section 14 forming a three ply layer at that point which, however, may 'remain flat with the sheet as a whole until assembly into the complete pallet. The means for fasteningthe strips together may vary but stitching in the form of stapling as indicated at 59 in Fig. 2 is particularly convenient. The section 13 can be fastened to the middle section 14 in a similar manner. It usually will be preferable to preform the pedestals 12 and so ship them although they likewise could be shipped in flat form and assembled at the point of use into the hollow pedestal shape by a suitable fixture and the use of fastening meang such as cement or stapling.
In the assembly of thepallet at thepoint of use 5.
propriate areas of the lower sheet to -be depressed therein,"
folding the parts along the scored lines; The lower sheet will then have the shape shown substantially in the-lower part of Fig. 2. The pedestals are then positioned in' the channels in thearrangementshown in Fig. 2 and' secured therein at desired points. The securing meansimayco'niveniently be by stapling. The outside rows of pedestals may be stapled as indicated at 60 inFig. 2 and it-"is' panticularly desirable to staple all four corner pedestals; The stapling may be efiected by a standard to'ol'havin'g an anvil part adapted to project down intothe op'en'end of the pedestal.
The top sheet is folded over the tops of the pedestals the channels facing downwardly'in the upper'sheet be ing arranged at right angles toth'e channels in the low'er sheet and each upper channel is engaged over a row of pedestals located in successive channels of the" lower sheet transversely thereof. The upper sheet is then secured in position by suitable means, which convenient- 1y may be stapling as heretofore described; It is de sirable to staple in particular all four corner pedestals and for that purpose the upper sheet is provided'with the flap openings 44'heretofore described. Similar" flap openings may be provided at any desiredpoint in either the lower or upper sheets for elfecting stapling; but it may be noted that it usually is suflicient to' staple only the corner pedestals and parts since all-otherpedestals areinterlocked in position by the cross channels of' the lower and upper sheet. As indicated most clearly in Fig: 4 the height of the pedestals corresponds substantially with that of the pallet as a whole and the oppositeends of the pedestals engage against the corresponding flat plane surface of the opposed upper and lower" main sheets; The side walls of the channels in one sheet e'rfgage edgewise the side walls of the channels of the op-.
posite sheet and the combined height is equal to the height of the pedestals. It results also that intervening depressed fiat areas in the opposed sheets engage fiatwise. This may be noted, for example, in Figure 5 where the downwardly depressed blank surfaces 62 and 63 of the top sheet rest on the upwardly depressed plane surface 64 of the bottom sheet. In the present embodiment of the invention the height of the side walls and of'the defined channels in one sheet are equal to those in the other sheet but in particular cases they may be of different height, except it is desirable that the sum of the heights equal that of thepedestals;
It may be observed that the assembled parts form an exceptionally rigid strong construction for the weight of material involved. A' particular feature of importance is the crossed beam construction formed by the channels in which the pedestals are located. The channels with their reinforced side walls provide an exceptionally rigid construction adapted to resist bending movements and the pedestals are adapted to take high compressive loads particularly in being aided in their resistance to compressive forces by the side walls of the channels which, as described, rest upon each other. For maximum strength in the channel beams when corrugated paper is employed for the upper and lower sheets, the flutes of the paper should extend in the direction of the arrow 16 transversely of the channels as heretofore described. It might also be noted that the pedestals, fastened to the beams, tend to maintain those beams vertical and in juxtaposition when the pallet is on the forks. This is reciprocal to the help that the beams offer in holding the pedestals in position, and upright, when the pallet is on the ground.
It will be noted that the assembled unit presents a plurality of spaced flat plane areas comprising in the present example three such areas 70, 71 and 72 which commonly would be adequate for supporting packaged material arranged in a brick pattern. However, if desired, auxiliary platform members may be inserted in the uppers" facing: channels: such as: tries. auxiliary platform member? 7 3: shownin Figs. 2": an also: shownrinsertedv partially broken away=in:1- ig: 3'; T-he' pallet. is reversible" andtunctionsrsimilarly? in either? position,- but; providing; alittledifierentchannelpatterm In' either position' there" is": provided underneath spaced" channels such' as: those indicated at 7 6 1 and 77 in Figure-'33"v adaptedsto receive: the
tines! or fingersis-of. a power'lift fork; Alsoathe upper channels indicated at. 78 and 79 inthe. position-ofi-the" pallet of Figure 3" enable" the tines of the lifit fork totbe inserted under: a load and the load lifted free: of. the pallet: if" occasion should" arise: I 7
It will be understood that variations mayrbe employed irr-the: structure and manner ofassemblingait and. l aisintended that alli matterl'contained in theabove descrip' tion and shown in the accompanying; drawings shall: be interpreted as" illustrative and not in alimiting-sense:
1. A pallet comprising a". pair of opposed sheets of paperboard each folded and. shaped. with: provision: oh a plurality of alternate upper: and lower fiat planar. sec? tions and intervening. vertical. wall sections forming channels with. the open side of the successive" channels being alternately atl the-top. and bottom therei being-s aplurality of such channels. at each side, thesheets being arranged adjacent with thetacihgchannels imone sheet at right angles to the facing channels in. the otheri sheet;
pedestals mounted in th'e' communicating: channel spaces where opposed open channels cross, the? pedestals: ex; tending tothe bottoms of' the corresponding; opposed channels with the pedestal-end engaging the correspondin; planar. section; and means-2' securing: the: sheets: and
pedesta ls'do'gether inifixe'd' irelationz 2 A' palletinaccordance witlr claim .1 intwhichth'e' inner edges"- of the said vertical: walls; in; one: sheet en gageagainst the inner edges of: the said? verticallwallszof V the other sheet.
3.-A- pallet in-l accordan'ce with claim 1 in: which: the
pedestals comprise tubular members of paperbo'ardt with the axis perpendicularto the planar sections at the ends;
4. A-pallet inaccordance-with claim 1" imwhich the" pedestals have a cross sectional shape and sizesuch as to conform with the: width and engage the -"opposed sides of'th'e'r'espective" two channels into which' theyextend a 5'.- A pallet-in accordaneewith claim '1 in: which s'ome at least of the: said vertical-wall sectionsin eachrsheet comprises. plurality of layers of the paperboard.
6. A pallet in accordance with claim 1 in which each sheet has at least two channels with the open side outwardly forming a pair of spaced channels adapted to receive the spaced fingers of a lifting fork whereby the pallet I is reversible.
7. A pallet comprising a pair of opposed paperboard sheets each being folded along parallel lines and shaped to provide a plurality of flat elongated planar sections extending across the sheet with intervening strip sections transverse to the planar sections forming corresponding parallel channel beams with the said intervening sections comprising the sides of the channels, some of the intervening side sections having a plurality of layers of the paperboard for increasing the bending strength of the resultant corresponding beam sections, said sheets being arranged in opposed relation with the channels in one extending at right angles to those in the other with open sides of the channels in one crossing those in the other, and tubular pedestals of paperboard mounted in communicating spaces where channels cross and extending to the bottom surfaces of the corresponding channels, the pedestals having a cross sectional shape and size such as to conform with the width'of and engage the opposed the channels, applying=a top part by. folding sheet material extending pedestals similarly located and spaced. in each of into a plurality. of parallel channels each having a down- Wardl-yfacing open side, the upper channels extending' in adirection at right angles to .the lower channels and each upper channel engaging over the tops of pedestals in successive lower channels, and securing the sheets and pedestals together in fixed relation;
9. A method of making a pallet of paperboard sheet material comprising, forming a bottom part by'folding sheet material to provide a plurality of parallel depressed channels with vertical side walls, inserting in each of said channels .a plurality of vertically extending pedestals having a transverse dimension substantially equal to the width of the channels and extending upwardly therefrom, the pedestals being similarly located and spaced in each of the channels, applying a top part by folding sheet ma- 7 direction at right angles to the lower channels and each terial into a plurality. of parallel channels each having a i downwardly facing open side, the upper channels extending in a direction at right angles to the lower channels and each upperchannel engaging over the topsof pedestals in' successive lower channels and having vertical side walls engaging against the pedestals, and securing the said parts and pedestals together in fixed relation.
10. A method of-making a pallet of paperboard sheet materialcomprising, forminga bottom part by folding appropriate areas of the sheet material to provide three parallel depressed channels with vertical side walls and flat bottoms, inserting in each of said channels a plurality of vertically'extending hollow pedestals of paperboard having a transverse dimension substantially equal to the width of the channels and extending upwardly therefrom,
the pedestals being similarly, located and spaced in each of-the channels, applying a top part by folding appropriate areas of the sheet material into three parallel channels each having a downwardly facing open side, the upper channels extending in a direction atright anglesto the lower channels and each upper channel engaging over the tops of pedestals in successive lower channels and having vertical side walls engagingagainst the pedestals,
and securing the said parts and pedestals together in fixed relation by fastening at appropriate points.
' 11. A method of making a pallet of paperboard sheet material comprising, pre-cutting to appropriate shape and scoring along appropriate fold lines sections of paperboard sheet material, forming a bottom part by folding the predetermined sheet material areas to provide a plurality of parallel depressed channels, inserting in each of said channels a plurality of vertically extending pedestals preformed to have a height corresponding substantially to the height of the pallet and similarly positioning the pedestals in each of the channels, applying atop part byfolding the corresponding sheetmaterial areasfinto-a plurality of parallel channels each having a downwardly facing open side, the 'upper channels. extending in a upper channel engaging over the tops' of pedestals in successive lower channels, and securing the sheets and pedestals together in fixed relation by appropriate mounted in the communicating spaces where the open channels cross and extending intoboth of the opposed channel spaces. t
13'. A palletcompn'sing a pair of opposed sheets each folded along parallel lines to form a series of channels extending across the sheet with sides perpendicular to the general planeof the sheet, the-folds and-channels in one sheet being arranged transverse to those in the other with open sides of the channels in one sheet facing open sides of the channels in the other sheet, and tubular pedestals mounted in the communicating spaces where the open channels cross and extending into both of the opposed channel spaces with the pedestals engaging the opposed sides of the respective channels and the'ends' of the ped estals abutting the, bottoms of the respective channels.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITEQ' STATES PATENTS Great Britain A'pr. 26, 1945 m bals-