US 3128903 A
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April 14, 1964 v. E. CRISCI SNAP-OVER COVER 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 Filed Dec. 15, 1963 INVENTOR.
VICTOR E. CR/SC/ BY WW ATTORNEY.
April 14, 1964 v. E. CRISCI SNAP-OVER COVER 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 Filed Dec. 15, 1965 IFIG. 5
INVENTOR. VICTOR E. CRISCI v BY ATTORNEY.
United States Patent 3,128,903 SNAP-OVER COVER Victor E. Crisci, Leominster, Mass., assignor to Marnmoth Plastics, Inc., Clinton, Mass., a corporation of Massachusetts Filed Dec. 13, 1963, Ser. No. 331,344 4 Claims. (Cl. 220-60) This invention relates to a new plastic cover for plastic containers. In particular it relates to a molded cover for use with a container having a circular opening, a slight body taper, and an outwardly protruding rim, such containers being familiarly known in the trade as tub containers.
This patent is a continuation-in-part of my prior copending application of the same title, Serial No. 158,218, filed December 11, 1961, and now abandoned.
Tub containers are in great use today particularly in connection with foods products as, for example, cottage cheese. Although various types of covers have been proposed and used, all such previously described covers have one or more deficiencies. Whether made of plastic or paper previously described covers typically have a circular body portion which seats inside the top and a vertical flange terminating in a lip which just fits over the rim of the tub cover. Such covers are difficult to remove or insert and where weakened by repeated use can be easily dislodged. In addition, such covers are difficult to nest or stack in automatic cover-dispensing machines without being locked into one another.
One object of this invention is to provide a snap-over cover for tub containers which is easy to put on and remove, forms a tight seal with the tub, is difiicult to accidentally dislodge and stacks with other identical covers without locking.
A further object of this invention is to provide such a cover which permits use of an insert, such as a preprinted cardboard insert.
Other objects and advantages of this invention will be apparent from the description and claims which follow and from the appended drawings, wherein:
FIG. 1 is a median vertical sectional view of a tub container.
FIG. 2 is a plan view of one embodiment of this invention.
FIG. 3 is a sectional view along line 3-3 of FIG. 2.
FIG. 4 is a plan view of another embodiment of this invention.
FIG. 5 is a sectional view along line 5--5 of FIG. 4.
The invention comprises generally a flexible molded cover having a flat horizontal body portion of approximately the same size and shape as the circular opening, a vertical portion extending upward and then bent over to the plane of the flat body portion so as to form an annular notch having walls of approximately equal height. The outer notch walls are further characterized as having spaced ribbed protrusions extending continuously along the inner wall over the top and down the outer wall and a minimum inner clearance of slightly less than the tub rim, with the outside flange wall flaring out sligthly with respect to the container wall.
In its preferred form the outer notch wall has a locking protrusion spaced to go under the bottom edge of the container lip.
Patented Apr. 14, 1964 In one form of this invention, each of a number of the ribbed protrusions have a horizontal abutment on the inner wall side near the top to even further improve the anti-locking stacking of the general form of this invention. Another feature of this invention is the provision in each of a number of the ribbed protrusions of horizontal protuberance near the bottom on the inner wall side to provide a retaining channel for inserts, such as pre-printed cardboard inserts.
Referring now to FIGS. 1, 2 and 3 of the drawings, the cover 11 illustrated therein has a circular flat horizontal body portion 12 from which extends upwardly and at a slight outwardly flaring angle, a wall portion 13 from which extends a top curved wall portion 14 and then an essentially vertical outside wall portion 15 which terminates approximately in the plane of the cover 11, thus forming an annular notch. Wall portion 15 has an an nular inner intermediate locking protrusion 16 whose location is selected so as to go under the bottom edge of rim 22 of container 21. The minimum clearance in the notch is slightly less than the width of the tub rim 22. A plurality of protruding ribs 17 and 18 are spaced on the outer wall portions with each rib running continuously up along the inner wall and back down along the outer wall.
When the cover is placed on the tub container, the rim of the tub container is held tightly in the notch above protrusion 16 and the bottom of the sligthly outward flaring outer wall of the cover provides a finger grip surface for ready removal.
The embodiment illustrated in FIGS. 4 and 5 includes both an upper horizontal abutment 23 and a lower protrusion 24 in six equally spaced ribbed protrusion 25. A cardboard insert 26 is shown by protrusion 24, the insert having pre-printing 27.
The materials of construction are varied. However, the material should be one that can be used with injection molding, as for example, polystyrene or polyethylene. Where the plastic is somewhat distoratable as in the case of polyethylene, the covers snap on very easily.
With some foods small amounts of gas are produced which it is desirable to vent. A cover made of polystyrene will release sufiicient gas. However, a more rubbery material such as polyethylene may require some gas escape means. If such is needed it can be provided as in the prior art by a vertical depression on the inner vertical surface of the cover. Thus, the vertical depression could be located in the inner side of the upper portion of 15 and extend from 16 to the top of 14.
The molded tub covers of this invention can be stacked one upon the other without any possibility of locking. This is extremely important in the original packaging of food in tub containers since the covers are placed on the tub containers with automatic cover dispensing machines. Jamming has been a frequent problem in such machines.
1. A flexible cover for use with a container having a circular opening, a slight body taper and an outwardly protruding top rim, comprising a substantially flat horizontal body portion terminating in a circumferential upward flange bent over to form an annular notch; the inner flange wall having a slight outward taper; the outer wall being substantially perpendicular; the notch having a minimum clearance slightly less than the rim of the container; the outer flange wall terminating substantially in 3 4 the plane of the fiat body portion; the outer surface of 4. The cover of claim 1 wherein there is in each of a the flange having a plurality of spaced protrustions explurality of said protrusions a horizontal protuberance tending continuously along the inner Wall, over the top on the inner wall side adjacent the bottom.
and down the outer wall.
2. The cover of claim 1 wherein the inner surface of 5 References Cited in the file of this Pdtent the outer wall of the notch has an intermediate locking UNITED STATES PATENTS protrusion arranged to fit over the bottom edge of the 2,740,444 Martineni Apr. 3 195 Container 2,922,563 Aldington Aug. 5, 1957 3. The cover of claim 1 wherein there is in each of a 10 2 947 4 3 kli Aug 2, 1960 plurality of said protrusions a horizontal abutment on the inner wall side adjacent the top.