US 3151761 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Oct. 6, 1964 H. S. CLOYD ETAL BOTTLE CASE Filed Aug. 10. 1961 HAR LD ROBQRT T. MANGOLD W s/MM- AT TORNEY United States Patent 3,151,761 BOTTLE CASE Harold S. Cloyd and Robert T. Marigold, both of Erie, Pa, assignors to Union Carbide Corporation, New York, N.Y., a corporation of New York Filed Aug. 10, 1961, Ser. No. 139,505 1 Claim. (Cl. 220-211) This invention is a case for bottles for carbonated beverages and the like and particularly for bottles having a necked down section above the bottom. Sometimes the bottles have a convex center section merging into a concave section toward the bottom. Bottles of this shape have a tendency to fall out when the case is carried by one end. In a preferred form in which the case is molded of plastic, this diificulty is overcome by downwardly extending spring fingers integral with the partitions which enter the concave sections of the bottles and hold the bottles, even when the case is inverted. When the case is in its normal upright position, the fingers are preferably unstressed so as to avoid cold fiow of the plastic. The case can also be used with bottles having the conventional straight sides.
In the drawing, FIG. 1 is a top plan view of the case. FIG. 2 is a section on line 22 of FIG. 1, FIG. 3 is a section on line 33 of FIG. 1, FIG. 4 is an end view, and FiG. 5 is a diagrammatic view.
The case has side walls 1, end Walls 2, and a bottom wall 3 integrally united to longitudinal and crosswise extending partitions 4 and 5 intersecting to provide individual pockets for the bottles and having upper edges below the tops of the bottles received in said pockets. The bottom wall is reinforced by ribs 6 intersecting to form polygons smaller than the size of the bottle caps so that when the cases are stacked one on top of the other with bottoms of the upper cases resting on the bottle caps of lower cases, several of the ribs 6 cooperate to take the load of each bottle cap. Each of the side and end walls is connected by an outwardly extending corner portion 7 which has two functions. First, it makes the outside dimensions of the case correspond to the dimensions of the conventional wooden case so that when wooden and plastic cases are intermixed in automatic handling equipment, no adjustments of the equipment are necessary. Another function of the projecting corners is to act as a bumper protecting the bottles from impact. Extending around the upper edge of the case is an outwardly projecting rim 3 suitably reinforced on its under side by reinforcing ribs 9 and 10, the ribs 9 being along the side walls and the ribs 10 being at the end walls. Other reinforcing ribs 11 having lower ends below the upper edges of the partitions are provided at the centers of the partitions 4 and 5. By reason of this structure, the case is effectively quite rigid even though made from one of the semi rigid plastics such as polyethylene.
In each of the end walls is a hand hole 12 providing a handle by which the case may be lifted. Sometimes the case is lifted with two hands and remains in its normal upright position but in many instances the case is lifted by one hand and hangs downward at an angle approaching the vertical as diagrammatically indicated in FIG. 5. With one handed carrying, difiiculty has been experienced with bottles falling out of the case, particularly when the bottles have the convex-concave external shape illustrated in FIG. 5. With the one handed carrying, the bottles assume substantially the angle illustrated and there is a contact point at 13 between an upper edge of one of the cross partitions 5 and the concave portion 14 of the bottle and another contact point 15 between another of the cross partitions 5 and the bottom of the bottle. While this bottle support might be adequate if the case were still, the ordinary jarring and vibration present as the case is carried from place to place results in some of the bottles slipping out of their pockets. This problem is not present in the bottles having straight sides.
The problem has been overcome by molding downwardly extending spring fingers 17 integral with the partitions 4 and 5. Conveniently, the fingers 17 are integral with the lower ends of the stiffening ribs 11. This makes the fingers easy to mold by a core extending through an opening 18 in the bottom wall 3 of the case occupying the projected area of the fingers. The fingers 17 extend well into the concave section 14 of the bottles and the lower ends 19 preferably extend slightly below the region of minimum diameter of the concave section. The inclination and length of the fingers is such that when a bottle is inserted into one of the bottle re ceiving pockets, the fingers are in a substantially unstressed or in a slightly stressed condition. In this position, there is no load on the spring fingers which would cause cold flow of the plastic. This is the condition when the case is in the normal upright position. When the case is tilted to the inclined position for one hand carrying, the spring fingers keep the bottles in the pockets under all conditions. The spring fingers will even keep the bottles in the pockets when the case is inverted and the bottles are full. This is true not only for the individual pockets where there are four spring fingers in each pocket, but it is also true in pockets such as those at the extreme corners where there are only two of the spring fingers in each pocket. At the same time, the bottles are easily removed from the pockets. An upward lifting force slightly greater than the weight of the bottle and contents is all that is necessary.
While the spring fingers otter considerable resistance to removal of the bottles from the pockets, they ofier very slight resistance to insertion. During insertion, the lower ends of the bottles strike against the slightly inclined surfaces 26 of the spring fingers and readily cam the fingers apart until the lower ends 19 enter the concave section 14 of the bottle.
What is claimed as new is:
A one piece molded plastic bottle case specially designed for bottles having a convex center section below the top and merging into a concave section toward the bottom, said case having side, end and bottom walls and intersecting crosswise and longitudinal partitions providing individual upwardly presented bottle pockets, the upper edges of the partitions and of the side and end walls being opposite the convex sections of the bottles received in the pockets, said partitions being integral with the bottom wall and said crosswise and longitudinal partitions also being respectively integral with the side and end walls, at least one partitions of each pocket having a molded plastic finger with the upper end integral with the said one partition below the upper edge of the partition, said finger extending downwardly away from said one partition at an acute angle and the lower References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS Weinmarm Jan. 15, 1924 Schraff Jan. 14, 1947 Lachance Aug. 27, 1957 Kappel Feb. 7, 1961 Levine Apr. 11, 1961