US 3131410 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
y 1964 J. J. ANDERSON ETAL 3,131,410
NOVEL POLISH COMBINATION Filed April 12, 1963 INVENTORS, JoH/v J. ANDERSON Mum/w c HARP/5 3,i3l,4l Patented May 5;, 1954.
3,131,410 NOVEL PQLESH COMBDIATIGN John J. Anderson, Kenosha, and Wiiliam (1. Harris, Racine, Wis, assignors to S. C. iohnson & Son, Inc, Racine, Wis.
Filed Apr. 12, 1963, Ser. No. 272,593 5 Claims. ((Jl. 15-244) This invention relates to a novel shoe protective kit, and, more particularly, to a shoe polishing kit which is extremely compact, permitting convenient storage, but which provides the necessary polish and means for applying said polish to shoes. The invention also embraces a novel shoe polish applicator.
In the prior art, a large number of shoe protective kits have been suggested, incorporating a paste wax, for preserving and beautifying shoes. Most of these kits have been relatively complicated, requiring an unduly large amount of storage space, both in the home and at the point of sfle. Additionally, such kits are more costly than the average consumer could afford or was willing to pay. Further, since the applier was maintained outside of the receptacle containing the polish, after the first use, residual polish on the applier would dry, eventually flaking off and leaving the applicator hard, stiff and often unfit for further use.
Therefore, in the past, most of the shoe polish sold has been packaged in relatively flat containers without providing applicator means. Such packages are inexpensive, easy to store in the home and are highly acceptable to retailens where shelf space is always at a premium. In an efiort to eliminate, or at least lessen the unpleasant task of applying the polish to the shoes, manufacturers have placed small pieces of textile, such as wool or felt, in the container for applying the polish. However, although this expediency was, seemingly, an improvement over applying the polish with ones lingers or with a cloth kept on the outside of the container, the polishing job with such an applicator was, at best, still messy. Thus, :the polishing cloth soon became fouled with polish, with it being difiicult, if not impossible, to maintain the polish, as ideally intended, only on one surface of the cloth. When the polishing cloth became fouled on both surfaces, the shoe polish obviously is transferred to the fingers upon polishing. Further, since the polishing cloth has no convenient means of grasping, even upon initial use, the fingers, particularly the undensurface of the fingernails, become covered with polish. The polish, .containing a permanent dye, was diflicult'to remove. Moreover, once the polish level in the container became low, the cloth had a tendency to flop around within the container, becoming more completely fouled on all surfaces. Therefore, after one or two polishing operations, the job of applying polish with the cloth was substantially as dirty as when applying the polish with ones fingers.
In an eifozt to simplify and to make the task of polishing shoes more pleasant, thereby increasing the marketability of shoe polish, we designed a shoe polishing kit, described in US. Patent No. 3,000,035, which has been enthusiastically received. Our aforesaid kit includes the necessary polish, together with a convenient applicator, permitting the application of the polish in a clean, convenient manner. However, a serious shortcoming of our kit is its height, which requires considerable marketing space, as well as storage space in the home. Moreover, the package is relatively expensive to manufacture.
In studying the marketing of such an item, it became apparent that, ideally, a shoe polishing kit should be compact, tightly sealed to prevent drying of the paste wax, have means of preventing the paste from rotation within the container, provide a convenient means of opening the container and have a means of application, which means would remain free from polish, even after many uses. Thus, it is necessary that the applicator remain firmly positioned in the container, even after the container is substantially empty.
Accordingly, it is an object of the instant invention to provide a shoe polishing kit which is compact, requiring only a smail storage area, and which provides a clean mess-free means of applying the polish to shoes.
It is another object of the instant invention to provide a shoe polishing kit which is hermetically sealed, preventing evaporation of the volatile components of the polish, but which is easily opened.
It is another object of the instant invention to provide a shoe polishing kit containing an applicator means which is firmly positioned within the container and remains free from polish, except on the polishing surface, throughout the life of the kit.
It is still another object of the instant invention to provide a shoe polishing applicator suitable for packaging in a substantially flat container which is convenient to use and inexpensive.
These and other objects will become more fully apparent from the following detailed description with particular emphasis being placed upon the drawing.
In general, the objects of the instant invention are accomplished by providing a shoe polishing kit comprising a substantially flat receptacle containing paste wax and a novel applicator. The receptacle, which forms no part of the instant invention as such, is a low domed circular box comprising a container portion and a cover portion. The cover portion has a skirt of slightly larger diameter than the container portion, providing a hermetic seal when the cover and container are properly engaged. The novel applicator comprises a sponge portion, preferably a polyurethane foam, a substantially rigid backing member fixedly attached to the sponge portion and a top portion fixedly attached to the rigid backing member and sponge portion. The top portion has butterfly tabs which are substantially fiat when the applicator is in the receptacle and the receptacle closed. However, when the receptacle is open, the tabs are raised, permitting convenient grasping, and providing means of firmly holding the applicator while polishing the shoes. Preferably, the tabs have interlocking ribs at the extreme ends of their upper surface, enhancing the rigidity of the applicator while applying polish.
As will be apparent from the drawing, described fully hereinafter, the butterfly tabs perform a dual function. Thus, while providing an applicator which occupies a minimum of space when the receptacle is closed, and still permitting convenient gripping of the applicator, the tabs, once raised upright for grasping, have a tendency to remain partially upright, thereby pressing against the top of the cover portion of the receptacle when the receptacle is again closed. This co-action between the receptacle and the applicator prevents the applicator from flopping around within the container, particularly when the polish is partially used, eliminating fouling of the fingergrips of the applicator with polish and, subsequently, soiling of the fingers of the user when again applying polish.
As is apparent, therefore, regardless of the polish level, the applicator remains upright and free of polish. This feature assures a continuous means of applying the polish without polish getting on the users fingers. Yet, the entire shoe protective kit is extremely compact, convenient and inexpensive.
In the accompanying drawing, forming a material part of the application, and wherein like numerals are employed to designate like parts throughout the specification:
FIGURE 1 is an exploded perspective view of the shoe polishing kit;
FIGURE 2 is a front view of the shoe polishing kit when the receptacle is closed, illustrating in broken lines the snap-off feature of the cover portion;
FIGURE 3 is a front, cross-sectional view of the shoe polishing kit when the receptacle is closed;
FIGURE 4 is a front view of the novel applicator, partly in cross-section, with the butterfly tabs upright and in interlocking position; and
FIGURE 5 is a broken away, enlarged front view, partly in cross-section, showing the butterfly tabs partly upright and illustrating the serrations on the skirt of the top portion of the applicator in broken lines, before being turned in.
More specifically, referring to FIGURE 1 of the drawing, 1 defines the cover portion and 2 the container portion of the receptacle. Numeral 3 defines the novel applicator. In the preferred embodiment shown in the drawing, cover 1 has ridges which correspond to, and engage indentations 29, shown clearly in FIGURE 3 of container portion 2, preventing slipping and sliding when more than one receptacle is stacked one upon another. This feature is advantageous in displaying the merchandise at the point of sale. Skirt portion 11, which is slightly larger in diameter than bevelled lip 21 of the container portion, enabling a hermetic seal, is partially cut away at areas 12 and 13, permitting a snap-off action when pressure is applied at indentation 14 of the cover and to the corresponding underside of the container portion.
Container portion 2 has bevelled lip 21, as noted above, of slightly smaller diameter than skirt portion 11 of cover portion 1. The rolled lip, in addition to facilitating en gagement of the cover portion, provides a convenient means of wiping excess polish from the applicator. Further, ridge 22 cooperates with indentations 2b to prevent movement of the paste cake. Preferably, the container portion has a ridge 19 intermediate the bevelled edge and the bottom of the container for seating skirt ll of the cover portion. Although the above described receptacle is a preferred embodiment, due primarily to the snap-off cover feature, any hermetically scalable, circular, substantially flat container can be substituted in the instant shoe polishing kit.
Applicator 3 comprises sponge 3i substantially rigid backing member 31 and top portion 32. The sponge, which is fixedly secured to the substantially rigid backing member, can be fabricated from any spongy material, but is preferably constructed from polyurethane foam, due to the materials exceptional resistance to the volatile solvents which are present in the wax. The backing member, which is composed of stiif paper, cardboard or plastic, is fixedly secured to sponge .30 by adhesive or other suitable means. Top portion 32, which is constructed from a plastic, such as polypropylene or polyethylene or a light metal, comprises skirt portion 33, upper surface 34 and butterfly tabs 35. Upper surface 34 is cut away, as most clearly seen in FIGURE 1, forming butterfly tabs 35 integral therewith. The tabs, which are hinged to surface 34 at 350, preferably have ribs 36 and 36a on the upper surface thereof. These ribs interlock when the tabs are in the extended position, greatly enhancing the rigidity of the entire appliactor for applying polish. Additionally, tabs 35 preferably have corrugated under surfaces 37, which enable a more firm grip on the applicator. Down- Wardly extending ridges 37a meet backing member 31 and retain the tabs in a slightly raised relationship for more convenient grasping. Upper surface 34 has raised annular ridge 38 extending completely around the periph eral edge of the top portion of the applicator, and ridge 38a extending across the top surface for reinforcing the structure. As is apparent, modification of the reinforcing means can be made, for example, a series of short bars or an I-shaped ridge extending across surface 34. Moreover, it can be advantageous to form finger voids, not shown in the drawing, in upper surface 34, adjacent ribs 36 and 36a, for more convenient raising of the butterfly tabs. Skirt portion 33 has a series of serrations on the lower surface thereof, which are turned inwardly into sponge 33 and below the rigid backing member, thereby maintaining the sponge and backing member fixedly secured to the top portion of the applicator. The teeth are conveniently turned in by roll forming, i.e., applying pres sure to the teeth, preferably employing a blunt tool which is held against the teeth as the entire applicator is rotated, and at the same time, holding the foam out of contact. The deformation can be accomplished by cold spinning, or heat can be applied.
As is apparent, the novel applicator is extremely simple in construction and can be conveniently made, employing simple molding operation. The interlocking of ribs 36 and 360, when the butterfly tabs are in extended position, provides an unexpected high degree of rigidity to the entire applicator. Moreover, since the butterfly tabs of the applicator have a tendency to remain in an extended positllQH after the first use, they press against the upper surface of cover portion 1, holding the applicator firmly within the receptacle, even after substantially all of the polish has been used. Moreover, the serrations along the lower skirt of the top portion, which are turned in to engage the foam and rigid backing member, will not permit loosing of the sponge from the top portion, even though a relatively large force is applied to the lower surface of the sponge while applying polish. Furthermore, the top portion, preferably constructed from polypropylene or polyethylene, which may have some tendency to swell and expand, due to the solvent vapors in the closed kit, will not break away from the sponge portion, but is maintained fixedly secured by the turned in teeth. The design of the instant polishing kit is extremely simple in construction and still provides the essentials of an ideal shoe polishing kit.
It should be appreciated that while only the preferred embodiment has been described, the invention is not restricted thereto. Modifications will be apparent to one skilled in the art which come within the scope of the appended claims.
1. A substantially flat shoe polish applicator for use in combination with a low dome receptacle, comprising a spongy portion fixedly secured at one surface to a substantially rigid backing member and a top portion fixedly secured to said backing member and spongy portion, said top portion comprising an upper surface and a skirt, said upper surface having first and second finger grip tabs integral with and depressalbly hinged thereto, said tabs each having ribs on the extreme end of the upper surface thereof, said ribs of the first tab interlocking with said ribs of the second tab when the tabs are in the raised position, thereby adding rigidity to the applicator.
2. A substantially flat shoe polish applicator accordring to claim '1, wherein the skirt of the top pontion contains turned in serrations in adhering engagement with said backing member and spongy portion.
3. A substantially fiat shoe polish applicator accord- 5 ing rto claim 2, wherein the upper surface of the top portion has reinforcing ridges integral therewith.
4. A substantially fiat shoe polish applicator according to claim 3, wherein the under surface of the finger grip tabs are corrugated.
5. A substantially flat shoe polish applicator according to claim 1, wherein the top pontion is polyethylene, the spongy portion polyurethane foam and the backing member cardboard.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS France Aug. 11, 1954