US 3000603 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Sept. 19 1961 R. R. HEMANN PAPERBOARD PALLET SPACERS AND THE LIKE Filed Sept. 21, 1959 MIA/12??? Pawn) Elk/MAW 1977?: Zen,
3,000,603 PAPERBOARD PALLET SPACERS AND THE LIKE Ronald R. Hemann, Highland, Ill., assignor to Alton Box Board Company, Alton, 111., a corporation of Delaware Filed Sept. 21, 1959, Ser. No. 841,223 12 Claims. (Cl. 248-120) This invention relates to paperboard structures, such as pallet-supporting runners, concrete forms and the like. It will be understood that the pallet type system of material handling involves the use of spacer blocks, feet or runners for supporting a deck, box or the like, in spaced relationship from the surface on which it rests, whether it be the floor or the top of a palletized load. There have been various proposals for manufacturing such spacer members from corrugated paperboard. One approach involves winding or laminating corrugated paperboard material to form blocks. The corrugations of such blocks extend vertically and are often exposed at the lower surfaces of the blocks, hence a disadvantage with this type of spacer is that moisture may enter the open corrugations at the bottom and weaken the paperboard. The elongate or runner type of pallet space often is formed from a folded sheet of paperboard, but such members are sometimes difficult to set up and may be Weak in the sense that the structure tends to collapse sidewise along its fold lines, particularly when the pallet is dragged in the direction transverse to the fold lines.
Accordingly, one of the objects of this invention is to provide a pallet spacer formed from paperboard, but which is relatively resistant to penetration by moisture and has considerable strength both in the vertical direc-. tion and in the sidewise distortion. Although variousfeatures of the invention may be apparent in the detailed disclosure, briefly, the invention contemplates that a pallet runner will be formed from corrugated paperboard, or similar sheet material which is scored and die cut to a particular pattern. The corrugations preferably extend transversely of the runner, the runner being formed by folding a pre-cut and scored blank along lines extending transversely to the corrugations. The blank is folded to provide a relatively wide, top-forming center panel, a pair of side-forming panels depending along opposite sides of the center panel, a pair of bottom-forming panels extending inwardly from the side-forming panels andv a pair of center partition panels projecting upwardly from the bottom panels. The side-forming and center-partitioning panels are of a width equal to the desired height of the foot, for example, about three inches, whereas the bottom-forming panels are each of a width equal to half the width of the top-forming panel. The center topforming panel is transversely scored and longitudinally cut to form flaps extending substantially the full width thereof and of a length substantially equal to the desired height of the structure. In a preferred embodiment. the flaps are arranged in pairs which initially abut at a center transverse cut and are hinged to the center panel along transverse lines spaced a distance corresponding to twice the desired height of the structure, the longitudinal cuts then extending between the ends of the twov transverse scores which define a pair of flaps.
Each flap is further formed with a longitudinal slot extending from its end edge a distance approximately half the length of the flap, the slot being of a width equal to approximately two-thirds of two thicknesses of the corrugated paperboard. This slot should also have rounded corners adjacent the open ends thereof to facilitate setting up the structure. Each of the center partition panels is transversely slotted at spaced points therealong generally opposite the transverse hinge lines of theflaps. In setting atent up this blank, the flaps are folded down at right angles ice to the top panel, so as to have an interlocking slotted cooperation with the center divider panels.
Other features of the invention will be in part apparent from and in part pointed out in the following detail description taken in connection with the accompanying drawings, in which:
FIG. 1 is a top perspective view of the pallet runner of this invention;
FIG. 2 is a plan view of the blank from which the pallet runner is formed;
FIG. 3 is a longitudinal vertical section taken on the line 33 of FIG. 4;
FIG. 4 is a transverse section taken on the line 4-4 of FIG. 3; and
FIG. 5 is a detail end elevation of a pallet illustrating the manner in which the pallet feet are attached to a pallet deck or base of a palletized load.
As illustrated in FIG. 1, the pallet spacer of this invention is of the folded variety and has a generally elongate shape with a double-box or triple-box cross-section. Although elongate folded pallet runners have been known heretofore, the device disclosed herein offers certain ad vantages in low cost, ease of manufacture, strength both under compression and sidewise distortion, and ease of setting up in the sense that the pallet runners can be initially stored and shipped as flat panels and then readily set up by the user without the necessity for gluing, stitching or the like. The pallet runner, of course, may be fastened to a pallet deck or to the base of a carton which is to be palletized. For example, the runner may be secured by glue or by steel bands extending around the top of the load and beneath the runners. Moreover, the runner of this invention can be readily detached and opened up to its initial flat shape for convenience in storing or further transportation.
Another feature of this runner is the resistance to moisture. It will be noted that the base or bottom of the pallet foot is divided into two or more parts and that each part has integrally hinged vertical walls which are free of openings. The arrangement is significant in that the base is thereby protected by the continuous liner of the board from entry of moisture--it being understood that liners are relatively water resistant and can be made more so by moisture-proofing coatings. Although the ends of the pallet are not so protected, the corrugations extend parallel to the end edges so that moisture will not penetrate very far into the space between the two liners of the board. Those skilled in this art will appreciate that while paperboard is greatly weakened by impregnation of water, water generally enters the board through those edges transverse to the corrugations. With the device of this invention, these edges are protected. Also, the partitioned type of bottom is advantageous in that should the outer liner be punctured and permit entry of moisture, only one-half of the pallet foot is so effected, the other portion being isolated by the doublebox construction.
Referring now to FIG. 2, a foldable blank is formed by cutting and scoring double-faced corrugated sheet material. Since the scores and folds all extend at right angles, it is feasible to manufacture this blank on a printer-slotter, which is generally more economical to operate than a die cutting and scoring press. The corrugations of the board, however, should extend in a predetermined direction with respect to the folds in order to achieve maximum strength and maximum water resistance. The principal scores are transverse to the corrugations and continuous from one end to the other end of the blank, hence they may be conveniently formed as the board leaves the corrugating machine. These principal scores comprise a first central pair 1, a next outer pair 3 and a final outer pair 5. The panel 7 defined between the center fold lines 1 ultimately forms the top of I the pallet foot. The two panels 9 lying between the fold lines 1 and 3 ultimately form the outer sides of the pallet foot, whereas the next pair of panels 11 between fold lines 3 and ultimately form the bottom of the pallet foot. Finally, the marginal portions 13 lying between the fold line 5 and the edges 15 of the blank act as center partitions extending upwardly from the base panels to the top panels. The blank, of course, is slit to proper width and cut to the desired length of the runner, such cutting being conveniently accomplished at the end of a corrugating machine. Also, it is necessary to make some longitudinal cuts and slots. While such slots are not normally made at the printer-slotter machine, they are considered feasible. Also, the side edges 15 are not precisely straight, which feature is highly desirable for strength but is not essential and could be accomplished by proper slitting devices on a printer-slotter machine.
The remaining scoring and cutting could be handled on a printer-slotter. The blank is scored along transverse lines 17 extending across the center panels 7 at spaced intervals therealong. Each of the transverse scores 17 forms a hinge connection for a flap 19, which is further defined by longitudinal cuts 21 and transverse cuts 23. In a preferred embodiment of the invention, the transverse scores 17 are arranged in pairs, the fold spacing being approximately twice the height of the runner so that a transverse cut 23 divides the space therebetween into a pair of flaps. Of course, the longitudinal cuts 21 then extend from one transverse fold 17 to the other fold of a given pair and such longitudinal cuts 21 are substantially coextensive with the fold lines 1, so that the edges of the flaps will abut against the inner surfaces of the sides of the pallet foot. Each flap is further formed with a slot 25 extending inward from the free edge 23 a distance approximately equal to half the length of the flap, and the slots 25 are of a width equal to approximately two-thirds the double thickness of the board so that each slot accommodates the two partition panels 13. The end edges of the slots may also be rounded, as indicated at 27, to facilitate insertion of the center partition panels. The partition panels 13 are also transversely slotted at 29 so as to interlock with the flaps, the slots 29 extending partially across the panels 13 from the outer edges of the blank.
The space between the paired flaps 19' may be varied, but might be approximately equal to the combined length of a pair of flaps. The edges 15 of the partition panels may also be stepped-that portion fitting into the opening left by a pair of flaps being relatively wider than that portion which abuts against the top wall area remaining between the flaps. The differences in dimensions of the several lengthwise sections of the panels 13, as defined by the slots 29, corresponds to the thickness of the corrugated board, so that the center partition edges opposite the flap opening become aligned with the top surface of the panel 7.
In setting up the blank, the flaps 19 are folded vertically at right angles with respect to the panel 7, the side walls are brought together and the partition panels 13 are folded inwardly so as to enter the slots 25 and interlock with flaps 19. The partition panels 13 have to be forced and perhaps even bent somewhat during their insertion, but this is a minor inconvenience in assembly and tends to prevent the folded structure from inadvertently unfolding. Finally, the pallet form may be attached to pallet deck D, but as indicated in FIG. 5, the open wall 7 should face upwardly.
From the foregoing description, it is apparent that those skilled in the art will understand the structure, function and mode of operation of the invention herein disclosed, and appreciate the advantages thereof. Although one embodiment has been disclosed in detail, it is to be understood that the invention is not limited thereto, but the drawings and description thereof are to be understood as being merely illustrative. For example, the same structure may be used as a concrete form for a void space, or as a cushioning pad in a large shipping container. Also, the runner could be formed as a triple-box beam with the panels 13 spaced apart with or without a separate channel section fitted therebetween.
Having thus described the invention, what is claimed and desired to be secured by Letters Patent is:
1. A sheet of paperboard having a central pair of parallel spaced fold lines, a second pair of fold lines spaced outwardly from said first pair of fold lines, a third pair of fold lines spaced outwardly and parallel to said second pair of fold lines, the spaces between said second and third fold lines being approximately equal to half the space between said first pair of fold lines, the marginal portions of the sheet lying outwardly of said third pair of fold lines being approximately equal in width to the portions of the sheet lying between said first and second fold lines, the central portion of the sheet between said first pair of score lines having uniformly spaced transverse scores and flap-defining cuts extending therefrom, said flap portions having slots formed in their free ends, the flaps being of a width approximately equal to the space between said first pair of fold lines and of a length approximately equal to the space between the first and second fold lines.
2. The paperboard sheet as set forth in claim 1, which is formed as a corrugated sheet of board, the corrugations which extend at right angles to said first, second and third fold lines.
3. A sheet of paperboard as set forth in claim 1, wherein the marginal portions of the sheet are transversely slotted opposite the transverse scores in the center area thereof.
4. A pallet having a deck and a runner secured beneath said deck as a supporting member therefor, said runner being formed from a sheet of paperboard material folded into an elongate tube of polygonal cross section so as to have top and side walls, the top wall being in engagement with said pallet deck, the side walls being integrally connected to said top wall and extending downwardly therefrom, a pair of bottom sections each integrally connected and extending inwardly from opposite said side walls, said bottom sections having up-turned marginal portions extending upwardly into engagement with said top wall, said top wall having transverse flaps cut and folded downwardly therefrom, said flaps having downwardly opening slots, said up-turned marginal portions being secured within the'slots of said flaps, and said flaps being of outline equal to the internal cross-section of the tube.
5. A pallet as set forth in claim 4 wherein said runner is formed from a sheet of corrugated paperboard and is folded so that the corrugations thereof extend transversely of the fold lines defining the top and side walls.
6. A pallet as set forth in claim 4, wherein said upturned marginal port-ions of the sheet are in abutting engagement with one another, thereby to close the bottom of the runner.
7. A pallet as set forth in claim 6, wherein the bottom sections are in substantial abutting engagement with one another, the up-turned marginal portions of the sheet being in overlapping coextensive relationship.
8. A pallet as set forth in claim 4, wherein said side walls and bottom sections are supported on the edges of said flaps.
9. An elongate paperboard tube for supporting purposes and the like comprising a sheet of paperboard material folded into a closed tube of generally polygonal cross section, opposed margins of said tube being turned inwardly with respect to the outer wall formed by said tube and being in overlapping relationship with one another, fiaps cut and folded inwardly from a portion of said outer wall opposite said in-turned margins, said flaps being of an outline corresponding to the cross section of said tube, whereby the outer wall of said tube is sup ported on the edges of said flaps, said flaps having slots opening toward said in-tumed margins, and said in-turned margins being secured within said slots.
10. A paperboard tube as set forth in claim 9 of rectangular cross section, thereby to have top, side and bottom walls, said flaps also being of rectangular outline, the bottom wall thereof being formed by -a pair of bottom sections of equal width, the flaps being out and folded from the top wall, and the slots in said flaps being cen- 10 trally disposed at the free end margins thereof.
11. A paperboard tube as set forth in claim 10, wherein said top wall is of a width approximately equal to twice that of the side walls.
12. A paperboard tube as set forth in claim 9, wherein the in-turned margins extend entirely across the inside of said tube into engagement with the opposite portion of the outer wall.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,432,849 Adams Dec. 16, 1947 2,503,240 Cahners Apr. 11, 1950 2,593,895 Kohl Apr. 22, 1952 2,711,819 Lugt June 28, 1955 2,808,978 Wright Oct. 8, 1957 2,908,464 Traudt Oct. 13, 1959