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Publication numberUS3082903 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateMar 26, 1963
Filing dateNov 2, 1960
Priority dateNov 2, 1960
Publication numberUS 3082903 A, US 3082903A, US-A-3082903, US3082903 A, US3082903A
InventorsAul Robert J, Stevens Edward P
Original AssigneeWilliam Lowell Thomas Inc
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Reclosable integral package
US 3082903 A
Abstract  available in
Previous page
Next page
Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

March 1963 E. P. STEVENS ETAL 3,082,903



ATTORNEYS 3,082,903 RECLQSABLE INTEGRAL PACKAGE Edward 1. Stevens and Robert J. Aul, Toledo, Ohio, as-

signors, by mesne assignments, to William Lowell Thomas, Inc, Toledo, Ghio, a corporation of Ohio Filed Nov. 2, 1960, Ser. No. 66,741 2 Claims. (6]. 220-30) This invention relates to a unitary package which is reclosable and which consists of a body or container portion and a cover which is integral therewith.

Many types of packages have been designed for packaging small measured quantities of various items such as foods including liquids, powders and pastes, small hardware items such as nuts and bolts, thumbtacks, paper clips etc., and various other articles and substances. Most of these packages of the prior art consist of molded or formed bodies and separate lids which are adhered or sealed in place on the bodies and both of which are separately fabricated and handled during filling and closing. While this may not cause severe difiiculty where automatic machinery is employed for filling and sealing, it is often a considerable bother for a small user, who handles the packages only semi-automatically or manually, to have to keep two separate items in stock to keep them sanitary and to handle them both during filling and sealing of the package.

Many packages of this general type are intended to be partly emptied and then reclosed. The separate lids of the prior art are not satisfactory under these conditions because their inner surfaces often become contaminated when set aside during partial emptying of the container.

It is the principle object of the instant invention to provide a unitary and integral package on which both the body and the cover are fabricated from a single substance for example, are molded from a single sheet of flexible material such as a resinous film.

It is another object of the invention to provide a package having a removable and replaceable cover, the body and cover being structurally integral and attached to each other by a flexible hinge portion, so that when the package is open, the cover is retained in a position removed from the likelihood of contamination or loss.

it is yet another object of the instant invention to provide a reclosable integral package consisting of a hollow body having a perimetrical flange and a hinge integral with at least a part of one side or edge of the flange and .having a flanged cover which is integral with the hinge;

the entire package (including both the body and the cover) being handled as a single unit during manufacture and during filling and sealing and the cover being maintained in position for reclosing after being opened, by the integral hinge.

These and other more specific objects and advantages of a package embodying the invention will be better understood from the following specification and from the drawings, in which:

FIG. 1 is a view in perspective of a reclosable integral package embodying the invention;

FIG. 2 is a side view in elevation of the package illustrated in FIG. 1 and shown in an open position;

FIG. 3 is a view similar to FIG. 2 but showing the package in closed position, i.e., with the cover in place on and closing the body.

A reclosable, integral package embodying the invention is generally indicated by the reference number 10 and consists of three major parts, viz., a body 11, a hinge 12 and a cover 13. The body 11 has a generally flat bottom 14 and, in the illustrated embodiment, four upwardly extending side walls 15, 16, 17 and 18. While the package illustrated in the drawing is rectangular in 3,0%Z,03 ?atented Mar. 26, 1963 ice - the side walls 15, 16, 17 and 18 is joined to the two adjacent ones of the side walls with integral material forming the four corners of the rectangular body 11.

The upper edges of the side walls 15-18 inclusive, terminate in a common plane which is parallel to the plane of the bottom 14 and the upper edges of all of the side Walls 15-18, inclusive, join the inner edges of an outwardly extending shelf 19 which is integral with the side walls 15-18. The shelf 19 is illustrated as being horizontal but, of course, the shelf 19 may incline from the horizontal if desired for appearance design or simplicity of molding. At the outer edges of the shelf 19 the material forming the package 10 is molded upwardly to form a shelf margin 20 which extends as a border around the outer side of the shelf 19 and, in turn, is integral with a continuous horizontal flange 21 which lies on a plane parallel to the plane of the bottom 14. The shelf margin 20 extends upwardly but preferably also converges inwardly at one or more sides so that the horizontal dimension between the joining corners of the shelf 19 and shelf margin '20 is larger in both directions than the corresponding horizontal dimensions between the joining corners of the shelf margin 20 and the flange 21.

The hinge 12 is located at the outer-most edge of one side of the body flange 21 (in the illustrated embodiment the edge above the side wall 18), and is integral with the flange 21 and thereby connected to the body 11. In the illustrated embodiment the hinge 12 consists of a semi-cylindrical strip of material from which the package 10 is molded and is a continuation of the material of the body flange 21 and of a cover flange 22 of the cover 13.

The cover 13 has a recess formed by a generally flat bottom 23 and a cover margin 24 integral with the bottom 23 and cover flange 22. The cover margin 24 is of such size that it mates or nests into the recess formed by the body shelf margin 20 when the cover is swung, by flexure of the hinge 12, from the open position of FIG. 2 to the closed position of FIG. 3.

In order to facilitate the reopening of the package embodying the invention at least part of that side of the cover flange 22 (indicated by the reference number 25) opposite from and parallel to the hinge 12-, has a width greater than at least a part of that side of the body flange 21 (indicated by the reference number 26) which is opposite from and parallel to the hinge 12. These co operating parts of two flanges 25 and 2e are aligned with each other along a line normal to the hinge line of the hinge 12 so that when the cover 13 is swung from the position in FIG. 2 upwardly and to the position in FIG. 3 and is pressed downwardly into closing relationship with the body 11, a part of the cover flange 25 extends horizontally outwardly beyond a part of the body flange 26 so as to provide an overhanging lip which can be grasped by a person desiring to open the package in order to peel the cover 13 away from and ofi of the body 11. In the embodiment of the invention illustrated in the drawing the entire side 25 of the cover flange 22 is wider than the entire side 26 of the body flange 21, thereby forming an overhanging continuous lip 27 (FIG. 3) for this opening action.

While the hinge 12 is shown in the drawing as being continuous it is to be understood, of course, that it may be discontinuous, i.e., that it may be formed by, say, two or more narrow strips with the material cut away between the strips in order to reduce the resiliency of the hinge 12 for example, or to permit the cover 13 to be more readily torn away from the package 11 if the user desires.

The preferred construction, with the outside horizontal dimension of the cover margin larger than the horizontal dimension between the upper edges of the body margin 25 results in the cover snapping into the mating recess formed by the body margin 29 and the provision of additional cover retaining friction because the material of the body margin 20 and body flange 21 or the material of the cover margin 24 and cover bottom 23 must be flexed to allow the cover 13 to be pulled away under these conditions. This not only improves the initial seal of the cover 13 on the body 11, but, of course, retains the cover in place when the package is reclosed after partial use of its contents.

We claim: 7

1. An integral package fabricated from a single piece of moldable and flexible sheet material, said package comprising a body having a generally fiat bottom and upwardly extending side walls bounding and integral with said bottom, said side walls terminating at their upper edges in a common plane parallel to the plane of said bottom, an outwardly extending body shelf extending horizontally around and integral with said side walls at said plane of termination, and upwardly extending body margin at the outer edges of said shelf, and a fiat body flange integral with said body margin and lying generally in a plane parallel .to the plane or" said body bottom, said body flange being spaced from said body shelf by said body margin, said body margin being upwardly convergent Whereby a first horizontal opening between joining corners of said body margin and said body flange is smaller in plan than a second horizontal opening between corresponding joining corners of said body margin and said shelf; a hinge integral with said body flange along one side of said package; and a cover for said body, said cover including a central recess comprising a flat bottom and a continuous, upwardly extending cover margin, said cover margin mating into said body margin and having an outside horizontal dimension greater than the corresponding dimension of said first horizontal opening and a flat cover flange integral with said cover margin and extending around said central recess, one side of said cover flange being adjacent to and integral with said hinge, and the opposite parallel side of said cover flange having a width greater than the width of the side of said body flange opposite from said hinge, said parts of said flanges being aligned along a line normal to said hinge; whereby when said cover is swung over said body by flexure of said hinge and pressed downwardly into closing relationship with said body with said cover nested in said body margin the outermost edge of said opposite and parallel side of said cover flange extends outwardly beyond the edge of the contacting side of said body flange forming an overhanging lip for grasping in order to peel said cover away from said body.

2. A package according to claim 1 in which the outside horizontal dimension of said cover margin is less than the corresponding dimension of said second horizontal opening.

References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,105,710 Stewart Aug. 4, 1914 2,713,845 Silverman July 26, 1955 2,736,656- Marshall Feb. 28, 1956 2,845,104 Frankel July 29, 1958 2,873,782 Gunn Feb. 17, 1959 2,885,135 Friday May 5, 1959 FOREIGN PATENTS 372,038 Germany Mar. 23, 1933

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US2845104 *Oct 5, 1956Jul 29, 1958Frankel MorrisPlastic containers with hinged relatively movable parts
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US2885135 *Sep 7, 1954May 5, 1959Paper Maid IncMolded pulp container
DE372038C *May 19, 1921Mar 23, 1923Walter AllolioKonservendose
Referenced by
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US3145895 *Aug 16, 1962Aug 25, 1964Diamond National CorpHinge construction of molded fiber articles and method of producing the same
US3191240 *Apr 20, 1961Jun 29, 1965Slaman AlbertMulti-pane window panels
US3415361 *Dec 22, 1966Dec 10, 1968Miles LabTest device and container therefor
US3424363 *Oct 22, 1965Jan 28, 1969Monsanto CoPackages
US3556337 *Feb 18, 1969Jan 19, 1971Peter Eckrich And Sons IncPackage with hinge
US3655111 *Oct 23, 1970Apr 11, 1972Surerus Robert AThermoformed plastic container
US3909089 *Jul 8, 1974Sep 30, 1975Plastics IncContainer for storing and carrying articles
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U.S. Classification220/833, 220/839, 229/406
International ClassificationB65D43/16
Cooperative ClassificationB65D2251/1016, B65D43/162
European ClassificationB65D43/16B