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Publication numberUS3107023 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateOct 15, 1963
Filing dateJun 12, 1961
Priority dateJun 12, 1961
Publication numberUS 3107023 A, US 3107023A, US-A-3107023, US3107023 A, US3107023A
InventorsDawson Jack C, Jacobson John W
Original AssigneeDawson Jack C, Jacobson John W
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Collapsible container
US 3107023 A
Abstract  available in
Images(4)
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Oct. 1963 .1. w. JACOBSON EI'AL 3,

1 t e e h s s t e e h S 4 M T N O c B I S W L O C Filed June 12, 1961 INVENTORS John W. Jacobson BY Jack C. Dawson j r 2 A fforneys Oct; 1963 J. w. JACOBSON ETAL 3,107,023

COLLAPSIBLE CONTAINER Filed June 12, 1961 4 Sheets-Sheet 2 Fig. 3

'INVENTORS John W Jacobson BY Jack C. Dawson f 27. Y Attorneys 1963 J. w. JACOBSON arm. 3,107,023

COLLAPSIBLE CONTAINER 4 Sheets-Sheet 3 Filed June 12, 196] F i g MM 32 3% F 25 A; 73 57 i t 4/ L52 VIII/1 7/ INVENTORS John W. Jacobson y Jack C. Dawson Attorneys Oct 1963 J. w. JACOBSON ETAL 07,

COLLAPSIBLE CONTAINER Filed June 12, 1961 4 Sheets-Sheet 4 82 30 24 I I 83 i 5 I F l g. F I g. ll 4s t 89 INVENTORS 7 John W. Jacobson BY Jack C. Dawsen 91 43 2a joy/UV Attorneys United States Patent 3,107,023 CGLLAISIBLE CONTAINER John W. Jacobson, Mill Valley, and Jack C. Dawson, San Carlos, Calif. Filed June 12, 1961, Ser. No. 116,520 1 Ciaim. ((31. 217-15) The present invention relates to a two piece collapsible container useful in shipping coffins. More specifically, the present invention is directed to a collapsible cofiin container characterized by surprisingly sturdy side and end walls which may be collapsed to form a highly convenient unit. Because the collapsed unit is sturdy, compact and light, reshipment and consequent reuse of the container is made possible.

In the past, coflins were shipped in heavy, non-collapsible wooden containers or crates. The use of this type of container was considered necessary to effectively protect the cofiin from injury during shipment. Unfortunately, however, such containers were inconveniently bulky and expensive to manufacture. Moreover, in spite of the manufacturing cost they were discarded upon receipt because of the prohibitive expense and inconvenience in reshipping them. Thus, the cost of manufacturing such protective units constituted a complete economic loss.

Though the art is replete with references to the use of collapsible containers for other purposes, a collapsible container has not heretofore been devised which could be used successfully to protect cofins during shipment. Because of the great weight and bulk of cofiins, the protective container must be sufliciently sturdy to withstand internal and external stresses, shocks and blows. Thick wooden walls on the container have, consequently, been deemed necessary. However, the thickness of such walls and in the bulk of their reinforcing members prevent the designing of containers which can be effectively folded or collapsed into a relatively small and compact unit suitable for reshipment and subsequent reuse. It is, therefore, the principal object of the present invention to provide a collapsible container particularly useful for the shipment of coffins which withstands major shock forces, internal and external shipping stresses, blows and the like, yet may be collapsed into a relatively compact unit for reshipment.

Another object of the present invention is to provide a two piece collapsible container particularly useful for the shipment of coffins provided with improved locking means whereby said container may be easily and effectively locked when expanded to normal size.

Yet another object of the present invention is to provide a two piece collapsible container particularly useful for the shipment of corfins characterized by the absence of loose parts which might be lost during shipment.

Still another object of the present invention is to provide a two piece container particularly useful for the shipment of cofiins having side and end walls hinged to a roof member in such manner that they may be folded into layers to form a compact unit.

Still another object of the present invention is to provide a two piece container particularly useful for the shipment of coffins which may be manufactured economically from comparatively inexpensive readily obtainable materials.

Still another object of the present invention is to provide a two piece container particularly useful for the shipment of cofiins having a smooth external surface free from externally disposed supporting members on its roof or sides.

Yet another further object of the present invention is to provide a collapsible two piece container particularly useful for the shipment of coflms which is simply de- "ice signed yet ruggedly constructed whereby it may afford long and durable service.

Other objects, features and advantages of the present invention will be apparent from the following description read in conjunction with the appended claim and drawings, in which FIG. 1 is a perspective view of one embodiment of the invention showing the two piece collapsible container for caskets in its collapsed state with the walls secured in position by the attached straps ready for reshipment so that it can be reused for a succeeding casket shipment;

FIG. 2 is a perspective view of the collapsible container of FIG. 1 showing by arrows the direction in which the collapsed side and end walls are moved to convert the container into the expanded form represented by the phantom lines;

FIG. 3 is a perspective view showing the two piece collapsible container for caskets of FIG. 1 in its expanded form ready to receive the casket shown in phantom lines with the cover unit disposed over the bottom wall and casket;

FIG. 4 is a perspective view showing the two piece container for caskets of FIG. I in its completely assembled form;

FIG. 5 is a plan view taken along the line 5-5 of FIG. 3 and shows in detail the top wall of the covering unit of the collapsible container together with spring loaded draw bolts and supporting blocks, hinges and the hinge mount angle members and filler blocks;

FIG. 6 is a plan view taken along the line 66 of FIG. 3 and shows in detail the rectangular bottom wall of the collapsible container, an end block supporting member and a supporting cleat fixedly secured to the bottom wall and the disposition of the attaching straps;

FIG. 7 is a fragmentary enlarged perspective view of the corner of the container shown at 77 in FIG. 5 showing details of the drop side and corner fastener;

FIG. 8 is an enlarged cross sectional view taken along lines 8-8 of FIG. 6 showing the manner in which a supporting cleat is fixedly secured to the rectangular bottom wall, how the straps are secured to the bottom Wall and engage the side walk-and the manner in which the cleats are beveled to provide for the straps;

FIG. 9 is a cross sectional view taken along the line 9-9 of FIG. 1 and shows the collapsible container for caskets in its closed state and, by phantom lines, in its open state with the side walls and end wall erect;

FIG. 10 is a cross sectional view taken along the line 10-10 of FIG. 5 and shows in detail an end wall in its raised position;

FIG. 11 is a cross sectional View taken along the line 11-11 of FIG. 10 and shows a side wall in its raised position, the end filler block, and the disposition of the piano hinges attached to the side walls of the collapsible container. 7

Referring to the drawings in greater detail, FIG. 1 shows one embodiment of the collapsible container for caskets in its collapsed condition with the straps 20 and 21 holding the side walls 24 and 25 firmly in position by means of buckles 22 and 23. Each side wall 24 and 25 is provided with a spring loaded draw bo lt.26 and handle 27. As is shown in FIG. 1, a scuff angle bar member 28 is fixedly secured to the edges of the side walls 24 and 25. The rectangular side walls 24 and 25 are attached along their longitudinal length by piano hinges such as 29 to the edge of the topwall so that when the collapsible container is opened, it forms a continuous smooth surface with -the roof member. Yet the interior surfaces of the protective container are amply provided with strategicflly disposed cleats so that the container can successfully withstand internal and external stresses and forces and at the same time present a. smooth external surface. This 'posite sides of the container.

3 feature or the invention constitutes a clear advance over prior art casket containers. The side Walls 24 and 25 do not operatively engage the roof member at the same level. Thus, as shown in FIG. 1 and illustrated most clearly in FIG. 9, the side wall 26 is hingedly engaged with the roof member 43 at a higher point than is its opposing wall 25. This higher point of attachment provides point. The clamps 31 disposed above the perimeter of the rectangular bottom wall 41 are adapted to operatively engage the spring loaded draw bolts 26 on the side walls '24 and 25 and end walls 45 and 46.

The straps and 21 disposed within the clamps 31 of the bottom wall 41 are adapted to encompass the container when collapsed and hold the side walls 24 and 25 securely in position. The straps 20 and 21 also prevent the hardware, i.e., draw bolts 26 and handles 27, from moving on the side walls 24 and 25. In the collapsed position shown in FIG. 1, the container may be easily moved and consequently can be reshipped to the sender.

In the past employing casket containers of sufiicient strength to protect the shipped casket, it was not economically feasible to reship the bulky container to the shipper. As shown in FIG. 1 the container in its collapsed form is a relatively small and compact unit without loose parts which might be lost in transit. The unit may consequently be returned and reused. Moreover because of their durability the collapsible containers of the present invention may be effectively re-used many times before replacement becomes necessary.

FIG. 2 shows in detail the manner in which the collapsed container for coflins is converted into the open or expanded form which is designated by phantom lines. As shown by the arrows in FIG. 2 the side walls 24 and 25 of the container are first opened and the opposing end walls 45 and 46 then rotated on their hinges to close op- The inner surface of each of side walls 24 and 25 is provided with supporting cleats such as 32, 33 and 34 which rigidly support the side walls such aswall 24 in FIG. 2. These supporting cleats 32, 33 and 34 are offset to clear the hardware on the wall disposed below when the container is collapsed. For example offset supporting cleats 32, 33 and 34 on side wall 24 are oifset so that they do not interfere with the spring loaded draw bolt 26 and handle 27 on side wall 25 when the container is collapsed. Because of this unique arrangement of offset supporting cleats, the side walls 24 and 25 are provided with the sturdy support necessary for a casket container, yet the Walls may still be folded into a relatively small compact unit. The employment and disposition of the supporting cleats consequently constitutes one most significant feature of the present invention.

The side walls 24 and 25 are hingedly engaged by piano hinges 29 and 30 to the rectangular roof member 43. The straps 20 and 21 are preferably parachute webbing, though it will be understood that the type of strapping employed may vary considerably. The locks 26 in the preferred embodiment ofthe present invention are spring loaded draw bolts since they are simple to use, durable in construction, and effectively hold the covering unit securely to the rectangular bottom wall 41. Each side wall 24 and 25 is provided with an inside corner catch 39 so that the side walls 24 and 25 and adjacent end walls and 46 may be fixedly secured while the container is in its open position. The length of the supporting cleats 32, 33 and 34 on the side walls 24 and 25 and end walls 45 and 46 may vary somewhat. However, the side cleats 32, 33 and 34 preferably extend from approximately the handle level of the side wall to the base member when the covering unit is turned over into the position shown in FIG. 3. A particular advantage of the present invention lies in the disposition of the supporting cleats inside of the collapsible container so that though it remains fully supported along its entire perimeter no irregularities appear on the containers surface. The cleats 32, 33, 34, 32a, 33a and 34a disposed on the side walls serve to brace these walls against both internal and external pressure. The cleats 49, 50 and '51 fixedly secured to the rectangular bottom wall 41 serve both to brace against side thrust and as support for the coffin. Because of the unique disposition of the supporting cleats it is possible to use relatively light weight material in the container such as quarterinch plywood and half-inch reinforcement, yet provide a container which is sufficiently strong and rigid to contain and protect caskets of considerable weight and bulk. Moreover, because heavy and bulky containerwalls are not necessary, the container may be collapsed into a comparatively small space for reshipment.

The piano hinges 29 and 30 which secure the side walls 24 and 25 to the roof member 43 at their terminal portions are supported by hinge mount angle bar members 37 and 38 preferably constructed of aluminum. A filler block aluminum extrusion such as 87, to be discussed-in greater detail, and a filler block backing such as 78 are disposed radially along the longitudinal border of the side walls where they hingedly engage the roof member 43. These elements have been found to fully support the hinges 29 and 30 holding the side walls 24 and 25 in position. They are substantially more economical than full length angle bars which were heretofore believed necessary to support piano hinges such as 29 and 30. The end walls 45 and 46 which are confined'within the side walls 24 and 25 when the container is in the open position are similarly hingedly engaged with the roof member 43 by piano hinges such as 83.

FIG. 3 shows the cover unit fully assembled and about to be lowered over a cofiin 40 shown in phantom lines which is disposed on and strapped to rectangular bottom wall 41. As clearly shown in FIG. 3, the collapsible container of the present invention is composed of a rectangular bottom wall 41 and a covering unit. The coverin unit is composed of a roof member 43 and hingedly secured thereto side walls 24 and 25 and end walls 45 and 46. When in its collapsed form the side walls 24 and 25 and end walls 45 and 46 are folded into the roof member 43. The collapsed unit is positioned on the rectangular bottom wall 41 with the spaced feet 44 resting on the surface of the rectangular bottom wall 41. The spaced feet 44 of the top wall or roof member 43 of the covering unit shown in FIG. 3 may, if desired, be employed in stacking the containers during the shipment of coffins. Scuff angle bar members 28 are also disposed along the borders of the roof member 43, side walls 24 and 25, and end walls 45 and 46, to protect these panels of the collapsible container.

The type and amount of hardware, i.e., handles and locking means, as shown in FIG. 3 may vary considerably. It is generally preferred, however, to provide the collapsible container with sufiicient handles on the side and end walls to facilitate easy movement. In the preferred embodiment of the present invention as shown in FIG.

3 spring loaded draw bolts 26 and handles 27 are fixedly secured to each side wall 24 and 25 and one spring loaded draw bolt 26 and handle 27 are secured to each end wall 45 and 46. The disposition of the supporting cleats such as at 32, 33 and 34 must be such that the cleats do not interfere with the hardware when the container is in its collapsed state. In is preferable, however, to dispose a supporting cleat behind the hardware on each wall but offset the cleat to prevent interference with hardware on other walls. The opposed end members of the collapsible container are provided with an inner rim member 43 characterized by inwardly turned supporting flanges 55 which support the drop side and corner fasteners or corner catches 39 within the container. The spring loaded draw bolts 26 shown in the open position in FIG. 3 are adapted to engage the clamp members 31 fixedly secured to the rectangular base member 41 and thus fixedly secure the covering unit to the base member 41 after a coffin 46 has been secured by straps 2t? and 21 to the base member 41. These spring loaded draw bolts 26 are particularly advantageous for use in the present invention because they may be easily adjusted and manipulated, yet provide a firm and secure engagement of the covering unit and its mating rectangular base member 41. As shown most clearly in FIG. 3, the strap members 20 and 21 fixedly secure the coifin 40 on the rectangular base member 41 in an easy yet highly efficient manner.

Another advantage of the present invention is the fact that when the cover unit is in its assembled state and the coflin 40 has been firmly disposed on the base member 41 the colfin may be covered by simply lowering the comparatively light covering unit over it. In the past it has been found necessary to employ a previously constructed non-collapsible cofiin container thus requiring the coffin to be physically lifted and lowered into the container. By employing the collapsible container of the present invention the lifting of the coflin in this manner is avoided. Hence, the present collapsible container is significantly easier to load and unload than the noncollapsible containers heretofore used for protecting coffins in transit. The supporting clears 49, t? and 51 fixedly secured to the rectangular base member 41 are offset as shown in FIG. 3 so that they form the U-shaped support ng system with the side wall cleats which is shown in FIG. 2. The rectangular base member 41 is further provided with supporting blocks 52 which fortify the end wall members. Because of the unique disposition of the end supporting blocks 52, the base member supporting cleats 49, 5E and 51, side wall supporting cleats such as 32, 33, 34, 32a, 33a and 34a, and end wall supporting cleats S2 and 83, the container is provided with surprisingly strong support for coffins without employing the heavy and bulky walls heretofore believed necessary. Moreover, the system of supporting braces comprising essentially the supporting cleats 32, 33, 34, 32a, 33a, 34a, 49, 5t and 51, and the supporting blocks 52 shown in FIGS. 2 and 3 is extraordinarily effective in resisting both internal and external stresses, forces and blows during shipment. Because of this unique system of structural supports the walls of the collapsible container may be constructed of comparatively light weight material. In the past, on the other hand, it was considered necessary to construct cofiin containers out of bulky materials capable of resisting violent forces and blows but incapable of forming a collapsible unit. The structural support system of the present collapsible container for cofiins consequently comprises one of the most significant features of the present invention.

FIG. 4 shows a collapsible container for cofiins in its completely assembled condition. Here, the spring loaded draw bolts 26 are in their closed position operatively engaging the locking members 31. As shown by the phantom lines, the side wall supporting cleats 32, 33, 34, 32a, 33a, 34a and the cleats 49, 5t) and 51 on the rectangular base member 41 are sufficiently proximate to amply support side walls 24 and 25 and rectangular base member 41. The U-shaped configuration formed by the supporting cleats 32, 33 and 34 on side walls 24, 32a, 33a and 34a on side wall 25 and supporting cleats 49, 5t) and 51 on the rectangular base member 41 give the cover unit of the collapsible container a surprising rigidity and resistance to internal and external stresses, forces, blows and the like. Hence, because of the unique supporting system of cleats employed in this collapsible container for cofiins, it is possible to construct the container from comparatively thin wood such as quarter-inch plywood which has heretofore been considered inadequate for this purpose.

An additional important advantage of the present collapsible container for coffins over those of the art is its smooth surface. All supporting structures are disposed within the container rather than on its face except for the reinforcing flanges 55 on the end walls such as 45 which support the drop side and corner fasteners 39 within the confines of the container. Inner rim members 48 serve to support the end walls 45 and 46 and add balanced resistance to splitting and stability against internal and external distortional stresses on the container. The rectangular base member 41 is further supported by parallel braces 57 and 58 which also serve to prevent the container structure from slipping. The number and disposition of brace members such as 57 and 58 may vary considerably. Their position is less critical than that of cleats such as 32, 33 and 34 because, being on the underside of rectangular base member 41, they cannot interfere with the folding of the side walls 24 and 25 and end Walls 45 and 46. The entire structure in its assembled form, as shown in FIG. 4, is provided with scuff angle bar members 28 to protect the corners of the side walls 24 and 25, roof member 43 and rectangular base member 41. An additional advantage of the scuff angle bar members 43 resides in their covering of open cracks between the walls.

FIG. 5 shows in detail the structure of the top wall of the covering unit. The scuff angle bar members 28 protect the perimeter of the roof member '43 of the covering unit and extend downwardly at the corners to pro tect the edges of the side and end walls. The spring loaded draw bolts 26 are fixedly secured to the side walls 24 and 25 and the end wall 45 of the covering unit and are backed by supporting cleats such as 3 2. If desired for additional strength, the end wall may be supported by an additional support layer.

Fixedly secured to the top wall 43 along its length is a hinge mount angle member 37. It has been found that a filler block 87 may be employed in lieu of the hinge mount angle 37 in the medial portions of .the top wall 43 to support the piano hinges. In spite of the employment of a filler block 87 of the type shown in FIG. 5, the piano hinges are fully supported and the side walls 24 and 25 are fixedly secured in position. -It was heretofore belie-'ved necessary to support piano hinges of the type contemplated by the present invention with a full length angle bar. Employing the support system and filler blocks of the present invention, however, it has been found that these hinges are fully supported without the employment of these relatively expensive support elements. The employment and disposition of hinge mount angle bar members and filler blocks consequently constitutes a particularly valuable feature of .the present invention. FIGS. 5 and 7 show most clearly the disposition of the elements of the inside corner catch fixedly secured to the side walls and end walls. Employing this inside corner catch it is possible to fixedly secure the adjacent walls of the collapsible container in position in a simple yet highly efiicient manner. These inside corner catches may be attached to the side and end walls such as 24 and 45 by screws 67 or the like or alternatively may be attached to other supporting structure fixedly secured to the side and end walls. Similarly, the hinge mount angle members 37 and 38 and filler blocks such as 87 may be additionally supported by other supporting means rather than being directly secured to the roof member 43 of the covering unit.

Details of the rectangular bottom wall 41 are shown in FIG. 6. The diagonally disposed cleats such as 52 are fixedly secured by screws 61 and 62 or other appropriate attaching means to the rectangular bottom wall 41. As shown in FIG. 4, the bottom wall offset cleats such as 52, together with the side wall offset cleats, form a U- shaped supporting system. This system of supporting cleats provides a surprisingly strong container structure capable of resisting violent forces and blows during ship ment of the container containing a coffin. Because of the presence of these ofiset cleats, comparatively light weight material such as quarter-inch plywood may be employed in the opposing side walls 24 and 25, opposing end walls 45 and 46, and rectangular bottom wall 41. Yet, because of the unique disposition of the offset cleats 32, 3-3 and 34 on side wall 24; 32a, 33a and 34a on side wall 49, 50 and 51 on rectangular floor member 41; and end wall supporting cleats such as 82, interference with the hardware and spring loaded draw bolts 26 secured on the outer surfaces of the side walls 24 and 25 and end walls 45 and 46 is avoided. Longitudinal parallel braces 57 and 58 are fixedly secured to the underside of the rectangular bottom wall by screws, nails or other appropriate means. These longitudinal braces 57 and 58 add rigidity to the rectangular bottom wall 41 and, most importantly, prevent skidding. The attaching straps 2t} and 21 are fixedly secured in position by the offset cleats '49 and 51 and are of suflicient length to fit about the coffin when the container is in its open condition and to fixedly secure the side and end walls in position when the container is collapsed. The supporting block members 52 are important because they add support for the attachment of the draw bolt clamps 31 which operatively engage the spring loaded draw bolts 26, because they support the end walls 45 and 46 and because they protect the containers contents from end pressures. Block 52 is held in place by screws 63 and 64 or other appropriate means as shown in FIG. 6.

The inside corner catch designated generally as 39 which is employed to fixedly secure the side walls 24 and 25 to end walls 45 and 46 is shown most clearly in FIG. 7. Here, the flanged members 65 and 66 are fixedly secured by screws 67 or other appropriate means to the end wall 45 and side wall 24. The securing element 68 is then operatively attached at one end 71 to one of the flanged members 66 so that one terminal element fits within the inwardly turned flange of that member and a terminal lateral extension 72 is accommodated within the other inwardly turned flange 65. In this simple yet eflicient manner the side walls and end walls of the collapsible container may be securely engaged. The end walls of the container such as 45 have lateral supporting flanges 55 on their inner rim member 48 which support the corner latches where they attach to the walls. The inside corner latch shown in FIG. 7 is particularly advantageous for the purpose of the present invention because it holds adjacent walls firmly in place simply and efliciently yet can be easily opened when the container is to be collapsed.

FIG. 8 which is a cross section taken along the line 8-8 of FIG. 6 shows in detail the manner in which the offset cleats such as 52 on the rectangular bottom wall 41 are fixedly secured in position. The bottom wall 41 is supported at the point of attachment with the cleats and the draw bolt clamp 31 is secured below the bottom wall cleat 52 so that it may accommodate the spring loaded draw bolt 26 on the outer surface of the side wall 25. The attaching strap such as 2% in FIG. 8 is fixedly secured beneath the bottom wall olfset cleat 52 and above the rectangular bottom wall 41. Wall 41 may be additionally supported by other supporting elements at the point where the ofiset cleat and the catch are secured by screws or other appropriate means to the rectangular bottom wall. As shown by the phantom lines the side Wall 25 is disposed between the catch 31 and the bottom wall ofiset cleat 49. The cleats are preferably beveled to accommodate the straps such as 20 in FIG. 8. Hence, the side wall offset cleat 32 shown in phantom lines in FIG. 8 is beveled at its terminal portion 73 to provide for the strap 20. Cleat 32 is also disposed-to provide a space 74 between its terminal portion and the top portion of the cleat 49* disposed on the rectangular bottom wall 41. This open space 74 accommodates strap 20 which extends about the cofiin disposed on the rectangular bottom wall 41. Alternatively, when the collapsible crate is in its collapsed position straps such as 20 are employed to secure the end and side walls. In considering the overall structure of the container none of the side wall supporting cleats should directly engage the bottom wall supporting cleats. Rather, all side and bottom wall cleats should be disposed to provide a space such as 74 accommodating straps such as 20. As will be apparent from FIG. 8 the supporting cleats can be employed even if they are not beveled in the manner shown. However, by beveling the terminal portion of the supporting cleats of the side walls 24 and 25 and rectangular bottom wall 41 the strap 20 is more easily accommodated and is subject to less deleterious wear.

FIG. 9 which is a cross section taken along the line 99 of FIG. 1 shows in detail the manner in which the side walls 24 and 25 and end walls such as 46 are disposed upon one another when the container is in its closed position. The phantom lines of FIG. 9 show the position of the side walls 24 and 25 and end walls 45 and 46 in their erect position. The spring loaded draw bolt 26 which is fixedly secured to the side walls 24 and 25 of the collapsible container comprises essentially a flanged base member 75 which is fixedly secured to the side walls 24 and 25 and has operatively engaged therewith a spring mechanism 76. When the cover unit shown in FIG. 9 is disposed in the position shown in FIG. 3, the spring mechanism 76 operatively engages a clamp 39. Also fixedly secured to the collapsible side walls 24 and 25 is a handle 27 and its holder 35 which are employed to lift the collapsible casket container when the container is in its opened condition. Each side wall 24 and 25 is pivoted along the path shown by the arrows to its erect position and attached to the adjacent end wall by the inside corner catches shown in FIG. 7. The movement of the side Walls 24 and 25 into the illustrated erect position is made possible by the employment of the piano hinges 29 and 39 which are fixedly secured to the inside surface of the side wall and are supported by hinge mount angle bar members 37 and 38. The angle bar members are screwed or otherwise fixedly secured to the roof member 43. in the embodiment of the invention shown in FIG. 9 reinforcing members 77 and 73 are disposed between the angle bar members and the adjacent side wall. The spring loaded draw bolt mechanism 26 and handle 27 fixedly secured to the outer faces of the side walls 24 and 25 and end walls 45 and 46 tre reinforced by the cleats such as 32 and 32a in FIG. 9 which are disposed opposite the hardware on the inside of each side wall.

Because of the employment and disposition of the supporting cleats it is possible to employ material for the collapsible containers which would otherwise be considered unduly light and fragile for successful use in protecting coflins during shipment. Further protection is afiorded the side walls by the scuff angle bar members 28 which also protect the end walls as shown at 81 in FIG. 9. The scuff angle bar members are most clearly illustrated in FIGS. 3 and 4. Though these scuff angle bar members are highly desirable for the purposes of the present invention they are not necessary to provide a sufficiently sturdy collapsible container useful in shipping cofiins. The rimmed end wall 46 is provided with a spring loaded draw bolt and, most importantly, a supporting cleat 82 behind the draw bolt for support. Like the side walls, the end walls such as 46 are engaged with root member 43 by a piano hinge such as 83 in FIG. 9. The disposition of the inside corner catch 39 is also shown in FIG. 9.

The longitudinal cleat 49 fixedly secured to the rectangular bottom wall 41 acts to further support the coilln. As clearly shown, however, the bottom wall cleats do not engage the side wall cleats. A space designated 74 is provided for the straps 20 between the side wall cleats 9 and rectangular bottom wall cleats (FIG. 9). In spite of the provision of this space, however, the cover unit and rectangular bottom wall 41 are fully supported. The bottom wall 41 is also provided with longitudinal braces 57 and 58 which add rigidity and prevent skidding.

As shown most clearly in FIGS. 2, 3 and 9, the collapsible container comprises essentially two sections. First, the rectangular bottom wall 41 with its longitudinal braces 57 and 58 and clamps 31 for engagement with the spring loaded draw bolts 26 and, second, the top cover unit which comprises a roof member 43 and opposing side walls 24- and 25 and end walls 45 and 46 which, in the open position, serve to completely protect the euclosed cofiin. This covering unit is fixedly secured to the rectangular bottom wall 41 by means of the spring loaded draw bolts 25. In use the cover unit is lifted from the rectangular bottom wall 41 and turned so that the roof member 43 opposes the rectangular bottom wall 41. After the cofiin 49 is disposed upon the bottom wall 41 and fixed in position by employment of the straps 2t and 21 the cover unit is lowered onto the rectangular bottom wall 41. Opposing side wall hinges 29 and 39 are disposed at difierent heights. In like manner the piano hinges attaching the end walls to the roof member 43 are similarly horizontally disposed at different levels. This disposition of supporting members makes possible the collapsing of the side and end walls within the area provided by the roof member.

FIG. 10 which is a cross sectional view taken along the line 19-19 of FIG. shows in detail the end wall 45 in its upright position. The end wall 45 to which is attached the supporting cleat 82 is raised and lowered on the hinges shown in FIG. at 83. The side wall hinges 29 and 39 are offset so that one side wall may be lowered and disposed below the other 2 when the container is collapsed as shown in FIG. 2. Viewing the structure in more detail than is shown in previous figures, one hinge 29 is provided in the notch of the filler block 85 which is provided with a support member 77. Hinge 30 is disposed above the filler block 87 which is similarly supported by separate support member 78. Hinge 30 is secured to filler member 89. The employment of filler blocks as shown in FIG. 10 constitutes a distinct and significant advantage over prior methods of supporting hinges in collapsible containers. This feature is shown most clearly by comparing FIG. 9 with FIG. 10. In FIG. 9 aluminum hinge mount angle bar members 37 and 38 are shown at a terminal portion of the container supporting the hinges 29 and 34} secured to the side walls 24 and 25. In FIG. 10, on the other hand, these hinges 29 and .30 are secured at their medial portion by the filler block 85 or oifset thereto upon a filler backing 89 disposed above the filler block 87. Because of the employment of these filler blocks at the medial portion of the piano hinges, full and rigid support of the side walls is provided without the employment of full length metallic angle bar members.

FIG. 11 which is a cross sectional view taken along the line 1111 of FIG. 10 shows in detail the manner in which the piano hinge 30 supporting the side wall 24 is secured to the side wall 24, to the filler block 78, and the hinge mount angle member 37.

FIG. 11 shows even more clearly the unique disposition of the hinge mount angle bar members and the filler block and filler block backing whereby it is possible to fully support the piano hinges without necessitating the employment of an angle bar member extending the full length of the container. This unique feature of the present collapsible container for cofiins is also illustrated in FIG. 2.' Here, the piano hinge 39 which is secured to side wall 24 is supported by a hinge mount angle bar member 30 at its terminal positions and a filler block generally designated 87 at its medial position. The filler block is supported by a filler block backing 78.

In use the straps which are shown in FIG. 1 are loosened and the side walls pivoted on their hinges to the position shown in FIG. 2. The opposing end walls are then rotated to the position shown in FIG. 2 disposed between opposing side walls. The easily manipulated inside corner catches are now employed to fixedly secure the upright side and, adjacent end walls thus forming a rigid container structure. The top unit comprising the opposing side and end walls fixedly secured by the inside corner catches and pivotally engaged with the roof member may now be lifted from the rectangular bottom wall and disposed as shown in FIG. 3. Because this covering unit is constructed of light weight wood it may easily be moved. The rectangular bottom wall which resists skidding because of the presence of support braces and is adapted to carry relatively'heavy loads because of the presence of the offset cleats and end block members, is then placed on a solid surface and a casket disposed over the cleats as shown in FIG. 3. The straps may then be tightened over the casket to hold it firmly in place. The spring loaded draw bolts on the outer surfaces of the side walls and end walls of the cover unit are now opened and the entire cover unit moved into position over the rectangular bottom wall and coflin. The spring loaded draw bolts now engage the clamp members as shown in FIG. 4 and the unit is fully closed, thus fully protecting the coffin contained threin. Because of the unique construction of the collapsible container of the present invention it is possible to fully protect the coffin without lifting the heavy coflin and lowering it into a previously constructed container. In accordance with the present invention the cofiin may be placed upon the rectangular bottom wall and the comparatively light weight cover unit lowered over the coflin and fixedly secured in position by the spring loaded draw bolts.

The disassembly of the unit is equally convenient. Spring loaded draw bolts such as 25, 26 and 27 are opened and the draw bolt clamps 31 released. The cover unit is lifted from the rectangular bottom wall 4 1. The straps which fixedly secure the coffin are unbuckled and the cofiin is removed. In this position the inside corner catches 39 are unlatched and the side and end walls pivoted into their folded position. Because the hinges of opposing walls have their axes at difierent horizontal levels, each side and end wall is swingable from a plane substantially parallel to the roof member. With respect to the roof member, these opposing walls are spaced open when in the collapsed position and are swingable to a plane with respect to the roof member, as shown in FIG. 2. Due to the unique disposition of the supporting cleats on the side walls 24 and 25, and end walls 45 and 46, these walls may be pivoted on their hinges into the collapsed position without interfering with the hard- Ware disposed on adjacent Walls. The collapsed cover unit may now be placed over the rectangular bottom wall 41 and the straps buckled in place as shown in FIG. 1.

The containers of the present invention are substantially easier to load and unload than are prior art containers. Moreover, because of their light weight structure they may 'be easily and economically shipped. In spite of their light weight structure, however, the unique disposition of the supporting cleats on the rectangular bottom wall, the mating end walls, and opposing side walls provide a fully protective covering for the shipped cofiin. These features coupled with the ease of employing the spring loaded draw bolts and relatively low manufacturing cost make the collapsible coffin containers of the present invention significantly superior to those heretofore known.

We claim:

In a two piece collapsible container the combination comprising:

a generally rectangular base member having a pair of opposing end edges and a pair of opposing side edges, said base member being formed from relatively thin light weight material;

a plurality of base support cleats affixed to one side of said base member to increase the strength of said base member, said cleats disposed at spaced apart longitudinal locations along said base member and 12 a second side wall member for-med of relatively thin light weight material and having dimensions which approximate those of said top wall member; means hingedly connecting said second side Wall member to said top wall along the other side edge thereextending between the side edges of said base member, each cleat so arranged that a line drawn beof, said means disposing the hinge connection between its ends adjacent the side edges of said base tween said second wall and said top wall sufliciently member forms an angle relative to the end edges of above said top wall to enable said second wall to be said base member; folded over said first wall when said first wall is collapsible top member which combines with said folded parallel to said top wall and be substantially base member to form a generally rectangular closed parallel to said top wall; container when erected, and which is collapsible into a plurality of side wall cleats aflixed to said second a relatively flat member and combined with said side wall to increase the strength thereof, said cleats base member when the'container is to be shipped disposed on the side of said side wall which conwithout contents, said top member comprising: 15 tacts said first side Wall when said side walls are top wall generally rectangular in shape and of the collapsed, said cleats disposed at spaced intervals same general dimensions as said base member, said along the length of said second side wall and extop wall having a pair of opposing end edges and tending along the width thereof, the spacing of said a pair of opposing said edges, said top wall formed second side wall cleats being determined by and from relatively thin light weight material; equal to the spacing of the ends of the base cleats a pair of end wall members formed of relatively thin which are adjacent the other side edge of said base light weight material and hingedly connected to said member, said cleats extending to the side edge of top wall along the end edges thereof, the dimensions said second side wall opposite the side edge hinged of said end walls being such that they do not conto the top wall; tact one another when they are folded to overlie said fastening and carrying means secured to said second top wall; side wall member at locations coincident with side first side wall member formed of relatively thin wall cleats but on the other side of said wall, said light weight material and having dimensions which means extending outwardly from said wall member; approximate those of aid .to wall member; locking means afi'ixed to said side and end wall memmeans hingedly connecting said first side wall member bers for securing said wall members in an erected to said top wall along one side edge thereof, said position in which the end and side walls are mainmeans disposing the hinge connection between the tained generally perpendicular to said top member, side wall and top wall uffi iently above id top w 11 said side wall cleats being so offset from opposing side to enable said first side wall to be folded over said Wall Cl ats by virtue of the angular disposition of end walls when said end walls are overlying said said 'base cleats that they do not overlie one another top wall and be substantially arallel t s id top when the locking means is released and the end and walls; side walls collapsed; and a lurality of sid w ll le t ffi d t id fi t id base fastening means secured at the edges of said base Wall to increase the strength thereof, said cleats dismember coincident with the ends of said base cleats posed on the side of said wall which contacts said 49 for cooperation with the fastening means on said end Walls When said side wall is collapsed, said cleats i Wall cl ats to secure said base to said top. disposed at spaced intervals along the length of said side wall and extending along its width, the spacing References Cited in the file of this Patent 0; said side cleattls being determined by and equal to UNITED S A PATENTS t e spacing of e ends of the base cleats which are a adjacent one of the side edges of said base member, Y ?i gg g i said cleats extending to the side edge of said side 1352299 3 n "f"- 908 wall member opposite to the edge which is hingedly 1524966 B e Sept 1920 connected to said top wall member 0.6mm] et a1 1925 1,614,724 Friedlaender Jan. 18 1927 fastening and carrying means secured to sa1d first side 50 1 928 672 h H Wall member at locations coincident with side wall 2720998 P E 6 1933 clea s but on the other side of said side wall mem- 28G9746 g g g z ber, sa1d means extending outwardly from said wall 2,884,125 Cadillac et a1. Apr. 28, 1959 member;

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Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3616957 *May 15, 1969Nov 2, 1971Patton Lawrence AlfredContainer stuffing sleeve
US5253763 *Aug 11, 1992Oct 19, 1993Kirkley David CCollapsible container
US20130277263 *Apr 23, 2013Oct 24, 2013Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd.Reusable packaging box
Classifications
U.S. Classification217/15
International ClassificationB65D6/18
Cooperative ClassificationB65D9/18
European ClassificationB65D9/18