US 3119546 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Jan. 28, 1964 T. w'. WUERTHNER CONTAINER CARRIER INVENTOR.
TED WUERTHNER 3 Sheets-Sheet 1 Filed Nov. 2o, 1961 ATTORNEYS Jan- 28, 1964 T. w. WUERTHNER 3,119,545
CONTAINER CARRIER Filed Nov. 20, 1961 5 Sheets-Sheet 2 IN VEN TOR. TED W WUER THNER WFM TTORNE YS Jan. 28, 1964 T. w. WUERTHNER CONTAINER CARRIER 5 Sheets-Sheet 3 Filed NOV. 20, 1961 INVENTOR TED W WUERTHNER T TORNE YS United States Patent O 3,11%,546 CONTAINER CARRIER Ted W. Wuertiiner, Lafayette, Calif., assigner to Fibreboard Paper Products Corporation, San Francisco, Calif., a corporation of Delaware Filed Nov. Ztl, 1961, Ser. No. 153,321 3 Claims. (Ci. 229-40) The present invention relates to 'container carriers in which a plurality of containers, such as bottles or cans, are securely retained for handling. The present invention is particularly directed to container `carriers which are constructed from paperboard, or the like, and have at least one wall substantially `open to allow easy viewing of the contents of the carrier as Well as facilitate container removal.
Container carriers have long been used to form a single, easily handled package of ya plurality of individual containers. Commodities which are popularly packaged in this way are beer, either in bottles or cans, and soft drinks in similar containers. The various conditions which surround the storage of beer or soft drinks, coupled with the characteristics of the individual containers to be packaged, taken together with economic considerations, require that a carrier be carefully and cleverly designed if it is to be acceptable `for the job. The carrier must be constructed with sufficient strength in the needed places to function even when moist from :refrigeration conditio-ns. The strength :of the carrier must always be sufficient to support the combined weight of a plurality (popularly six) of containers full of liquid. It is also desirable that the carrier, even while Astrong enough to support the heavy contents, be easily opened for removal of the containers therein. 4In addition the carrier should preferably allow the contents to be viewed even when in a sealed condition and at the same time have as many continuous full surfaces as possible on which advertising material and trademarks may be imprinted. Also, a convenient means of gripping and carrying the carrier should be provided. All of these characteristics `and features are required or highly desirable, and they must be obtained using only that amount of material which is economical. Thus the iinal requirement demands that only a minimum of construction material be used.
Container carriers which have all or most of the above mentioned features and characteristics are known in the One of the structural features of these carriers is substantially open side walls. By :constructing the carriers to have open side walls the amount of material necessary is reduced without loss of strength where it is needed. Such carriers are easy to load with containers, the containers are readily removed from the carrier, and the contents of the carriers are on display. Consequently, it can be seen that open side walls in such carriers add greatly to the desirable features of a beverage container carrier.
A container carrier designed to have open side walls, characteristically has narrow border panels on the open side which serves to prevent the enclosed containers from slipping through the openings. When removal of a container is desired, -the several narrow panels which form a border are positioned to generally lie in the plane of the panel to which they are secured, thereby enabling the containers to be removed. Those narrow border panels, however, give rise to a problem under certain conditions.
When a retailer sets out a supply of beverage packaged in carriers it is customary, as it is for other products, to place them in stacks several carriers deep by several carriers wide. The stacked carriers can form solid rectangular structures for best utilization of space, or other geometric designs which the retailer mig-ht find helpful in displaying the product. Such stacks of carriers filled ICC with beverage containers are placed in refrigerated surroundings as Well as the normal shelf, but in either case, and whether stacked to form one geometric design or another, carriers are placed in close proximity to one another. When one of these stacked carriers is removed from the proximity of the others, as when being purchased, it is not uncommon for the lower border member of the carrier being removed to interlock with the upper border member of one of the adjacent carriers. This has the resulting effect of damage to the carrier being removed, which often leads to the containers in the carrier spilling out. This carrier interlocking 'occurs particularly when either Ior both of a pair of carriers which are closely stacked have an upper or lower border member bowed outwardly `from the rest of the package. This cafuses the packages to loverlap at this point which creates an obstruction. Since the border members are but single thickness of paperboard aor the like, the amount of bowing required to give rise to interlocking is not very great. This, coupled with the Ifact that bowing unavoidably occurs when the packages get moist or when being secured by the handler as by finger holes in the top panel, makes the chances of interlocking fairly great. The possibility of tearing open a carrier as a result of interlocking is greatest when the carriers `are maintained in refrigerated surroundings which causes the paperboard -to become moist and lose some of its resistance to tearing. The retailer also encounters the problem when he is unloading a shipment from his supplier or lwhen stacking the carriers for display. Thus it is seen that the problem presented by the unavoidable interlocking of border panels of container carriers can become quite serious.
The present invention, by modifying existing open sided carriers, provides an open sided carrier for beverage containers and the like, with all of the favorable features of open sided carriers, but without the associated problem of carrier interlocking.
According, it is an object of the present invention to provide an improved open sided container carrier.
It is another object to provide a container carrier hav- V.ing open sides surrounded by border members wherein border members interlocking between closely stacked carriers is all but eliminated.
lt is yet another object of this invention to provide border members for open sided container carriers which have upper and lower border members with effective thicknesses equal to many times the actual thickness of the paperboard from which the carrier is formed.
Further and more specific objects and advantages of the present invention are made apparent in the following specification wherein a preferred form of the invention is described by reference to the accompanying drawings.
ln the drawings:
FIG. l is a plan view of a paperboard beverage can carrier blank having the improvement of the present invention;
FIG. 2 illustrates in an isometric View the blank of FlG. l set up and ready to accept cans;
FIG. 3 is an isometric view of FIG. 2 with the carrier filled and completely sealed;
FIG. 4 is an isometric vertical section (with the cans removed) taken through the line 4 4 of FIG. 3;
FIG. 5 is a partial vertical section taken along the line 5 5 of FIG. 4;
FIG. 6 is a plan View of a paperboard bottle carrier blank having the improvement of the present invention; and
FIG. 7 is an isometric view of the blank of FIG. 6 set up, fill-ed with bottles and sealed.
Referring now to FIG. l, carrier blank 11 of paperboard or the like is cut and scored in a manner to be described so as to form a suitable package for beverage containing cans. A rectangular bottom panel 12 has a pair of lower border forming panels i3 hingedly connected at score lines i4 along opposite side edges thereof. Hingedly connected to the outer edges of border` form ing panels 13 are bevel forming members il@ hingedly connected to border panels i3 by score line 17. While border panels i3 are generally equal in length to bottom panel 12, bevel forming members i6 are shorter and therefore terminate short of ends i3 of panels i3. A securing flap 19 is hingedly connected along score line 21 at one end of bottom panel 12 while an end forming panel 22 is hingedly connected along the other end of bottom panel 12 by score line 23. A top forming panel 24, also rectangular and of the same size as bottom panel l2, is hingedly connected along score line 26 to end panel 22. At its other end, top forming panel Z4- is hingedly connected along score line 27 to another end forming panel 22. Each of end panels 22 has a pair of side border forming panels 23 hingedly connected at opposing side edges thereof, along score lines 29. Top forming panel 24 has a pair of upper border forming panels 31 hingedly connected at opposite side edges thereof by score line 32. Hingedly connected at the outside edges of border panels 3l are bevel forming members 33 connected along score lines 34 and terminating short of ends 36 of panels 3l.
Side border forming panels 28 have end tabs 37 which extend outwardly from score line 29 approximately the same distance as edge 39 of bevel member le, and edge 40 of bevel member 33 to simplify the cutting of the blank. Thus edges 41 of end tabs 37 are aligned with edges 39 and 4?. Central portion 42 of side border Z3 extends approximately half the distance from score line 29 that end tabs 37 do, and while integrally connected to end tabs 3'7 central portion 4?. is partially separated therefrom by slots 43. Slots 43 which are formed by end edges 44 of central portions 42 and inner side edges 46 of end tabs 37 provide means for maintaining bevel forming members 16 in a precise manner as will be shown in detail below.
Lower border forming panels 13 and upper border forming panels 31 are separated from side border forming panels 28 by spaces 47 to prevent binding between these adjacent panels when the carrier is sealed. Each of end panels 22 has a linger hole 43 cut out for handling purposes. Top panel 24 similarly has a pair of nger holes 49.
A can carrier is constructed and made ready for filling by securing tab 19 to end panel 22 such that score line 21 and edge 51 of blank 11 overlie one another. End walls 22 are then positioned at right angles to bottom 12 and top 24, so that blank 11 assumes the position shown in FIG. 2. Referring to FIG. 2, carrier 52 formed from blank 11 is conditioned for having beverage cans placed therein, or removed therefrom, by positioning upper border panels 31 to lie generally in the plane of top forming panel 24, lower border forming panels 13 to generally lie in the plane of bottom forming panel 12, and side border forming panels 28 to lie generally in the plane of their respective side panels 22. With the border panels so positioned no obstructions exist in placing a can in carrier 52 or removing it therefrom. When carrier S2 is being filled with beverage containers as for retail packaging purposes and the proper number of cans have been placed in the carrier the package is sealed. The package is sealed by pivoting side border panels 2S about their score lines 29 so as to form right angles with the end panels 22 to which they are connected. Upper border forming panels 31 and lower border forming panels 13 are then pivoted about score lines 32 and 14, respectively, so as to overlap end members 37 of side forming panels 2S. Upper and lower border forming panels 31 and 13 are secured in this overlapping position so as to form a sturdy border structure which prevents the cams 53, which are contained therein (FIG. 3), from falling out. The final packaging step, as shown completed in FIG. 3, is performed by pivoting bevel forming members 33 on upper border forming panels 31 and bevel forming members 16 on lower border forming panels 13 inwardly approximately 45 and securing them in locking engagement with side border panel slots 43. To insure that bevel forming members 33 and 16 are maintained by side panels 23 at an approximately 45 angle with reference to their respective border forming panels, a certain relationship between the dimensions of the upper and lower border forming panels and end tabs 37 of side border forming panels 23 must exist. The necessary relationship to provide the desired beveled edges is best described with reference to FG. 5, as well as FIGS. l, 2 and 3.
Referring to these figures, it is required that when panels 37 and 31 are in overlapping relationship, score line 34 coincides with or extends slightly below edge 45 of slot 43, if proper bevel formation is to be achieved. Since edge 4d of slot 43 is also an edge of end tab 37 it can be said that the dimension of tab 37 from edge 46 to top panel 24 be equal to or less than the dimension of border forming panel 31 between score lines 34 and 32. lt is further required that bevel forming member 33 when unfolded about score line 34 extend further below score line 34 than does edge 44 of slot 43. This insures that once bevel forming member 33 is snapped into slot 43 it will be secured therein by the obstruction formed by edge 44- of central portion 42. The inward angle at which member 33 is maintained with respect to the border panel 3l, to which it is connected, depends largely upon the relative positions of edge 44 and score line 34.
While side border forming panels 23 with their slots 43 provide a simple and positive manner of maintaining bevel members at a desired inward angular relationship to their respective border forming members, it is not t0 be inferred that other means for accomplishing the same results do not exist. Any locking means which provides structure for maintaining bevel forming members at an inwardly disposed angle would be acceptable, insomuch as the manner in which the bevel is formed isnot as irnportant as the fact that it be formed. One locking means, of course, will be superior to others if it provides less complicated cutting of the blank, is simple to use, and performs its function in a positive manner. The particular design of border panels 28 provides such superior means. Although the relative positions of slot 43 and bevel forming member 33 required for proper bevel formation have been described in relation to upper border forming panel 31, the same requirements are true for lower border forming panel 13 and its associated bevel forming member 16.
Referring now to FIG. 4, bevel forming members 33 and 15 form inwardly sloping bevel edges on their associated border forming panels, when secured within slots 43. In so doing, upper border forming panels 31 and lower border forming panels 13 are provided with eiective edge thicknesses which are a number of times greater than the-thickness of the material from which the carrier is formed and therefore many times thicker than the edge of an open-sided carrier not equipped with such bevel forming members. While the beveled edges of carrier 52 may have the same tendency to bow as would a carrier not having beveled edges, the amount of bowing will, for the most part, not be as great as the added thickness provided by the beveled edges, with the result that one carrier moved relative to another will not interlock. Thus one of the major drawbacks to open-sided container carriers is eliminated.
Referring now to FIG. 6 a bottle carrier blank 61 is illustrated showing the application of the present invention to bottle carriers. Blank 61. comprises a pair of end panels d2 hingedly connected at either end of a top panel 63 along score lines 64. Hingedly connected at the other end of one end forming panel 62 along score line 67 is a bottom forming panel 66 having a securing tab 68 hingedly connected at its other end along score line 69. Bottom forming panel 66 has a pair of lower border forming panels 7l hingedly connected along score lines 72 at either edge thereof. On the outer edge of lower border forming panels 7l are hingedly secured bevel forming members 73 pivotal about score line 74, Bevel forming members 73 me centrally located on lower bor der forming panel 7l but terminate short or the panel ends. Each of end panels 62 has a side border forming panel 76 hingedly connected along its sides at score lines 77. Each of side border forming panels 76 has a pair ol slots 7S formed therein similarly to slots 43 of side border forming panels 2te described above. Top panel 63 has a pair of sloping side Wall members 79 hingedly connected at score lines S1 on either edge thereof. Along the outer edges of panels 79 upper border forming panels 83 are hingedly connected at score lines 82. Along the outer edges of border panels S3 are upper bevel forming members S4 hingedly connected at score line S6. Bevel forming members 34 are centrally located on upper border forming panel 83 but terminate short of the panel ends. A series of semi-circular cuts 87 in top forming panel 63 and semi-circular cuts SS in panels 79 form openings for receiving the tops and necks of bottles to be secured within the carrier. The carrier is constructed by connecting securing tab 63 to side forming member 62 such that score line 69 overlies edge line 59 of blank 61. Referring now to FIG. 7 carrier blank 6l is shown set up, lled with bottles and sealed. This iinal package is arrived at by setting np blank 6l such that the resulting bottle carrier 9i has its end members 62 normal to bottom member 66 and top member 63. Sloping side forming members 79 along with upper border forming members 83 and bevel forming members S4 are positioned to generally lie in the plane of top member 63 while side border forming panels 76 are positioned to lie in the plane of their respective end forming panels 62 and lower border forming panel 71 along with bevel forming member 73 is positioned to lie in the plane of bottom forming panel 66. In this position the bottles can be easily and quickly put into place. When all of the bottles have been put into the carrier, sloping side members 79 are pivoted about score line 81 to lock the bottles in place. Side border forming panels 76 are then pivoted inwardly about score line 77 to generally form right angles with their associated end forming panels 62. Top border forming panel 83 is then pivoted about score line 82 to overlie side border forming panel 76 while lower border forming panel 7l is pivoted about score line 72 to also overlie the side panels 76. The panels 71 and 33 are secured as by an appropriate adhesive in their overlying positions. The nal set up procedtne, as in the case of the can carrier, is to snap bevel forming members 73 and S4 into the associated slots 78 of side border panels 76, to form the important bevel edge.
Thus itis seen that while bottle carrier 91 differed from can carrier 52 in having a certain amount of necessary side structure, namely sloping panels 79, the carrier was nevertheless of the open side variety and therefore of the type to which the pre-sent invention applies. lIn the same manner as described above the open side carrier 91 now possesses the outstanding features of such a carrier without the undersinable characteristic present when bevel edges are not provided on the upper and lower border forming panels.
It thus becomes apparent that essentially all paperboard carriers or the like which employ an open side with top and bottom border panels for holding the contents within the carriers, regardless of what other structure may be present in forming such carriers, ,are improved by the presence of at least one border bevel member maintained at an inward angle directed toward the interior of the carrier.
1. In a container carrier having an open side wall delined by an upper borde-r panel, `a lower border panel and a pair of opposing side border panels therebetween the combination comp-rising a horizontally extending bevel forming member on each of said upper and lower border panels and locking means on each of said side border panels for maintaining said bevel member lat an inwardly disposed angle with reference to their respective border panels.
2. In a container carrier having a bottom, top and end walls `therebetween .the combination comprising upper border forming panels hingedly connected to said top, lower lborder forming panels hingedly connected to said bottom, side border forming panels hingedly connected to said end walls such that a border is formed around open side walls when said upper and lower panels overlap said side panels, horizon-tally extending bevel forming members hingedly connected to said upper and lower border panels, and means for maintaining said bevel lmembers at an inwardly directed angle relative to their respective border members.
3. In a container having an open side wall the combination comprising:
an upper border panel defining one horizontally extending edge of the side opening, said panel disposed in the plane of the opening;
a lower border panel defining an opposing horizontally extending edge of the side opening, said panel disposed in the plane of the side opening;
a horizontally extending bevel forming member hingedly connected to one of said border panels; and
means for maintaining said bevel forming member at an inwardly disposed angle with reference to said border panels.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS