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Publication numberUS3113532 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateDec 10, 1963
Filing dateMay 29, 1961
Priority dateMay 29, 1961
Also published asDE1203680B
Publication numberUS 3113532 A, US 3113532A, US-A-3113532, US3113532 A, US3113532A
InventorsJames A White
Original AssigneeMaterials Inc
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Pallet
US 3113532 A
Abstract  available in
Images(1)
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Dec. 10, 1963 J. A. WHITE 3,113,532

PALLET Filed May 29. 1961 United States Patent C) 3,113,532 PALLE? .lames A. White, San Rafael, Calif., assigner to Materials, lne., San Rafael, Calif., a corp ration of @alifornia Filed May 2%, Edi, Ser. No. lli 5 Claims. (Si. ldd-5d) The present invention relates in general to pallets adapted for use with fork lifts and more particularly to an improved expendable pallet which is capable of supporting loads of many tons and which when assembled can be transported at. Load supporting shipping pallets have found considerable use in the storage and transportation of goods. The savings in labor handling is considerable when goods can be palletized and shipped with the pallet to their destination.

Heretofore, load supporting pallets have usually been made of wooden parts and constructed with passages between the top and bottom surfaces for receiving the lift forks of manual or power operated stevedore trucks and similar material handling equipment. Some attempt has also been made to construct pallets of this character out of metal parts. In either event the cost of materials heretofore used has been relatively high, and although it would be desirable to expend the pallet after shipping of the load the high cost of manufacturing even simple wooden pallets has ruled out this possibility. The return of empty pallets entails a tremendous job, and, furthermore, pallets of heavy materials as wood and metal add to the shipping cost when shipping charges are made by weight.

A novel expendable pallet is disclosed in US. Patent 2,958,494 to Harold A. Lovegreen and assigned to the assignee of the present application. The patent discloses an expendable pallet comprising a sheet of corrugated paper or the like which is folded to produce top and bottom panels and a plurality of supporting means passed through the side panels connecting the top and bottom panels for supporting the top and bottom panels in spaced apart relation. The ends of the sheet of paper are folded back over the next adjacent panel and are secured thereto, thereby containing the support means. The patent also discloses a type of pallet which can be lifted from four sides.

The pallet of this prior patent suifers from several shortcomings. The large open meas across the top and bottom of the pallet are areas into which goods supported on the pallet itself or goods stacked on another pallet onto which the pallet in question is stacked are likely to fit, and usually in such cases the shape of the pallet is somewhat distorted by the uneven distribution of the load, or the goods may interfere with the passage of lift forks through the pallet. Also, the end portions of the sheet of paper that are folded back to contain the support means have a tendency to pull away from the panel to which they are attached unless they are very securely fixed thereto. Also, the four-Way pallet of this previous patent was not as strong and rigid as desired. When passages were provided through the sides of the channel members supporting the top and bottom members for receiving lift forks from the additional two sides of the pallet, no support is provided on the bottom of the channel members, and they have a tendency to bend.

The object of the present invention is to provide an improved inexpensive expendable pallet which can be easily assembled, which is capable of supporting loads of many tons and which, when knocked-down, can be transported flat.

One feature of the present invention is the provision of a knock-down pallet adapted for use in lift fork operation and provided with a plurality of channels opening upwardly and downwardly across the width thereof, there 2 being more channels opening upwardly than downwardly.

Another feature of the present invention is the provision of a novel knock-down pallet adapted for use 1n lift truck operations wherein a pallet is provided with channels opening upwardly and downwardly across the width thereof with the outermost open channels opening inwardly.

Still another feature of the present invention is the provision of a novel knock-down pallet for use in lift truck operations wherein the pallet is provided with a plurality of channels opening upwardly and downwardly across the width thereof and channel members directed downwardly are positioned within the outermost upwardly directed channels whereby the pallet can be adapted for lifting from all four sides.

Other features and advantages of this invention will become more apparent from a review of the specification, taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings wherein FlG. 1 is a perspective View of an assembled pallet. comprising one embodiment of the present invention,

FIG. 2 is a cross sectional view of the structure of FIG. 1 taken along line 2 2 in the direction of the arrows,

FIG. 3 is a perspective View of an assembled pallet comprising another embodiment of the present invention, and

FIG. 4 is a cross sectional View of the structure of FIG. 3 taken along line 4-4 in the direction of the arrows.

Referring now to FIGS. 1 and 2 a rectangular base sheet l1 of cardboard or corrugated paper is scored along a plurality of parallel lines transversely thereof in order that the sheet can be easily folded to provide top load bearing panels l2 in substantially one horizontal plane, bottom panels 13 in a different horizontal plane and Vertical side panels 14 joining the top panels i2 and bottom panels 13. Two side panels lll which are connected by a top panel l2 define a channel extending transversely of the pallet and opening downwardly, and two side panels i4 Which are connected by means of a bottom panel i3 dene a channel extending transversely of the pallet and opening upwardly. A bottom panel i3 is provided at each end of the base sheet ll, encloses the downwardly opening channel formed by the adjacent top panel l2 and two side panels, and laps over a portion of the adjacent bottom panel 13. The overlapping bottom panels 13 and 13 can be joined by any convenient means such as adhesive, stapling, or tab and slot means.

The top and bottom panels are supported by support means which extend lengthwise of the pallet and pass through the side panels. All of the side panels 1d except the two outermost end side panels 14 are provided with a plurality of aligned slots substantially entirely transversely thereof, each row of slots along the length of the sheet 1l being adapted to receive a support member. These support members include rib members l5 of a sturdy material such as kraft veneer board or the like. The ribs can also be made of corrugated paper, but a pallet constructed with such ribs would not be able to support as heavy a load as a pallet with a more rigid rib member. The side panels ld and the rib members 15 keep one another vertically erect and evenly transmit the weight of the load vertically downward from the top panels.

Other support means are provided in the form of two inverted channel support members 16 of, for example, kraft veneer board, which are adapted to extend the length of the pallet for adding both vertical and horizontal stability to the pallet. All of the side panels except the outermost side panels ld' are provided with openings adapted to receive these channel support members l whereby the forks of a lift truck can be inserted into the channel support members i6 and thereby lift the pallet. The channel support members 16 are formed from rectangular board by routing lengthwise thereof and partially therethrough two grooves, V-shaped in cross Section, thereby providing a central portion l? and two side projecting portions 18. The side projecting portions 18 are then bent down toward that surface into which the grooves are routed. The central portion 1'7 and the side projecting portions 1S of the channel member 16 form the top and sides respectively', of a regular isosceles trapezoid. The openings in all of the side panels 1d other than the outermost side panels la are cut in the shape of regular isosceles trapezoids in order to receive the channel support members le. Rectangular openings are provided in the outermost side panels permitting insertion of lift forks but with the end side panels covering the ends of the channel support members i6 thereby retaining the channel support members i6 in position in the openings in the side panels ld.

The pallet is assembled by folding the sheet il along the scored lines to form the top panels l2, the bottom panels i3, and the side panels ll. Then the rib support members l5 and the channel support members .l5 are inserted into the appropriate slots in the sheet il. The outermost side panels 14' are folded down to cover the ends of the support members l5 and lo and then the l outermost bottom panels 13' are partially lapped over and fastened to the next adjacent bottom panel 13. In this manner the support members l5 and i6 are confined in position in the slots in the sheet member. Whereas the assembly of the pallet has been described with the pallet right side up, the pallet can be assembled upside down so that the overlapping bottom panels 136 and i3' are on top for convenient connection together.

The regions running lengthwise of the pallet through the channel support members 16 for insertion of the lift forks are enclosed at the top and sides by the central and side projecting portions i7 and i3, respectively, of the channel support members i6 and are enclosed over a substantial portion along the bottom of the pallet by bottom panels 13 arid 13. Since at each end of the pallet the outermost channel defined by a top panel l2 and two side panels ld and i4 opens downwardly and is closed by the outermost bottom panels 13', the bottom of the region for insertion of lift forks is only open in the downwardl I opening channels defined by a top panel l2 and two side panels ld in the central portion of the sheet il. Therefore, goods on top of which the pallet may be stacked are prevented from obstructing the passage of the lift forks through the pallet.

A pallet constructed in the manner set forth above is very sturdy and retains its shape even when loaded and placed on top of another loaded pallet. A pallet of this construction made with 200 lb. test heavy duty corrugated paper and kraft veneer board support members 1/7 inch thick has supported loads in excess of 5 tons. Furthermore, this pallet is readily adaptable for use as a four-way pallet.

As an alternative embodiment of the present invention (see FIGS. 3 and 4) a pallet is provided with channel support members 16 and with no rib support members, and an additional channel support member 19 is provided in each of the outermost upwardly directed open channels defined by a bottom panel 13 and two side panels 14. These channel support members 19 are provided with regular isosceles trapezoid cutout portions in the side projecting portions 2d thereof whereby the channel members El@ can be fitted over the other channel support members 16 and have their top surface in the same horizontal plane as the top panels l2. Also, apertures are cut in the side protecting portions 1S of the channel support members i6 whereby lift forks can be inserted from the side of the pallet into the channel support member 19 and transversely of the channel support members le.

In this manner an expendable pallet is provided which can be lifted from all four sides. The channel support members 19 can be ixedly secured to the pallet such as by a staple joining the channel support members i6' and i9. However, these channel support members need not necessarily be joined together since when the pallet is loaded the load can be picked up and the load will hold the portions of the pallet together. Also, additional channel support members 2l either the same length as channel support member 19 as shown in outline or shorter can be inserted in the remaining upwardly directed channels delined by two side panels i4 and a bottom member 13 thereby to provide a substantially continuous at top for the pallet. By the construction of the pallet shown in FIGS. 3 and 4 a rigid four-Way pallet is provided.

The regions running lengthwise of the pallet through the channel support members 16 for insertion of the lift forks are enclosed at the top and the sides by the channel members lo and over a substantial portion along the bottom of the pallet by the bottom panels i3 and 13. The regions adapted to receive lift forks from the sides of the pallet are enclosed at the top and sides over the width of the pallet by the channel support members 19, and the bottom of these regions are enclosed by a bottom panel i3 the entire width of the pallet.

Four-way pallets constructed in this manner are extremely rugged. Goods stacked on top of the pallet or on which the pallet may be stacked are prevented from obstructing the passage of the lift forks through the pallet, and substantially continuous flat surfaces are provided on the top and bottom of the pallet thereby preventing deformation of the pallet due to goods falling within openings in the top and bottom of the pallet.

Since many features and modifications can be made without departing from the spirit of this invention this description is to be taken as purely illustrative and not in a limiting sense.

I claim:

l. A pallet adapted for use in lift fork operation and for dat shipment in knocked-down position comprising a base sheet having a multiplicity of spaced parallel scores extending between a pair of opposed edges and defining the side margins of a plurality of panels, said sheet folded on the scores to position top panels in substantially one horizontal plane, bottom panels in a different horizontal plane and vertical side panels interconnecting said top and said bottom panels, any two side panels joined by a bottom panel defining a channel opening upwardly and any two side panels joined by a top panel defining a channel opening downwardly, openings in said side panels to receive lift forks and openings in at least certain of said side panels for receiving support members, and a plurality of support members slideably inserted in the openings in said side panels and extending lengthwise of the pallet with the edges thereof abutting the inner surfaces of the top and bottom panels whereby said side panels and said support members support said top panels and said bottom panels in spaced apart relation, the channels adjacent the two ends of the pallet opening downwardly and closed on their downward side by an end bottom panel at the very edge of said sheet, each of said end bottom panels overlapping a portion of the next bottom panel thereto and fixedly secured thereto, the outermost of said upwardly opening channels spaced such distance apart as to receive lift forks whereby said support members. can f be adapted to receive lift forks from two sides or from four sides of the pallet.

2. The pallet of claim l wherein said support members include at least two channel support members opening downwardly and slideably inserted in the openings'in all but the outermost of said side panels and said channel members are provided with apertures in the sides thereof in said outermost upwardly opening channels and including additional channel support members positioned in at least each of said outermost upwardly opening channels and transversely crossing said channel support members inserted in said side panels whereby the lift forks of a lift truck can be inserted into either end of the channel support members in the outermost upwardly opening channels and into either end of said channel support members inserted in the Openings in said side panels and extending lengthwise of the pallet thereby providing a four-way pallet.

3. A pallet adapted for use in lift truck operations for shipment in ilat knocked-down position comprising a sheet of corrugated paper or the like having a multiplicity of spaced parallel scores extending between a pair of opposed edges and deiining the side margins of a plurality of panels, said sheet folded on the scores to position top panels in substantially one horizontal plane, bottom panels in a dierent horizontal plane and vertical side panels interconnecting said top and bottom panels, said side panels provided with openings to receive lift forks and at least certain of said side panels provided with openings for support means, any tWo side panels joined by a bottom panel defining a channel opening upwardly and any two side panels joined by a top panel deiining a channel opening downwardly, more open channels being provided opening upwardly than downwardly, and support means slideably inserted in the openings in certain of said side panels, extending lengthwise of the pallet and with the edges thereof abutting the inner surfaces of said top and said bottom panels whereby said side panels and said support means support said top panels and said bottom panels in spaced apart relation two of said upwardly opening channels spaced such distance apart as to receive lift forks whereby said support means can be adapted to rereceive lift forks from two sides or from four sides of the pallet.

4. The pallet of claim 3 wherein said support means includes two channel support members opening downwardly and slideably inserted in the openings in at least all of said side panels other than the outermost of said side panels and said channel members are provided with apertures in the sides thereof in at least said two upwardly opening channels and including additional channel support members positioned in at least said two upwardly opening channels and transversely crossing said support members inserted in said side panels whereby lift forks of a lift truck can be inserted into either end of said additional channel support members in said two upwardly opening channels and into either end of said channel support members inserted into the openings in said side panels and extending lengthwise of the pallet thereby providing a four-way pallet.

5. The pallet of claim 4 wherein the top surface of said channel members and said additional channel members lies in substantially the same plane as said top panels and including channel means enclosing at least a portion of the remaining upwardly opening channels, the top surface of said channel means being in substantially the same plane as said top panels.

References Cited in the lile of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,664,219 Schmidt Dec. 29, 1953 2,958,494 Lovegreen Nov. 1, 1960 3,007,663 Huck Nov. 7, 1961

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2664219 *Oct 23, 1952Dec 29, 1953Thur SchmidtStorage and utility box
US2958494 *Oct 5, 1959Nov 1, 1960Materials IncPallet
US3007663 *Sep 4, 1959Nov 7, 1961Huck Products CorpDisposable pallets
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3131656 *Dec 20, 1963May 5, 1964Rene C HoulePallet
US3187689 *Oct 19, 1962Jun 8, 1965Kunststoffwerk Erbach G M B HPallet
US3469542 *May 15, 1968Sep 30, 1969Uno A AhleniusKnock down pallet
US3514001 *Aug 20, 1968May 26, 1970Jet Avion CorpFreight pallet carrier
US3610173 *Apr 4, 1969Oct 5, 1971David W CasePlastic pallet
US3913154 *Feb 4, 1974Oct 21, 1975Mcclive R ThomasMattress foundation unit
US4078760 *Oct 29, 1976Mar 14, 1978Mullins Wayne LCombination die and pallet
US5337679 *Oct 7, 1991Aug 16, 1994Georgia-Pacfic CorporationPallet constructed of sheet material
US5427019 *Oct 1, 1992Jun 27, 1995Georgia-Pacific CorporationSheet material pallet with wrap around deck
US5469795 *Feb 17, 1994Nov 28, 1995Georgia-Pacific CorporationPallet constructed of sheet material
US5555699 *Apr 6, 1995Sep 17, 1996Terex CorporationCross-stiffened panel structure
US5816173 *Jun 1, 1995Oct 6, 1998Warneford; Peter JohnPallet made from plastic flute board
US6564724 *Dec 4, 2000May 20, 2003Easy AbTransport device
US8726614 *Aug 21, 2006May 20, 2014Tb Composites LimitedComposite material structure and method for making same
US20100043305 *Aug 21, 2006Feb 25, 2010Nuala DonnellanComposite material structure and method for making same
WO2001094243A2 *Jun 9, 2001Dec 13, 2001Gatewood Products LlcMetal skid
Classifications
U.S. Classification108/51.3, 108/56.1
International ClassificationB65D19/00
Cooperative ClassificationB65D2519/00019, B65D2519/00562, B65D2519/00054, B65D2519/00985, B65D2519/00333, B65D2519/00273, B65D2519/00293, B65D19/0085, B65D2519/00557, B65D2519/00318
European ClassificationB65D19/00C3D2C1