US 3232397 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Feb. 1, 1966 P. B. M COY CARD CARRYING CASE Filed Nov. 7, 1963 N 1 8 Fig.2 36
INVENTOR. Paul 8. Mc Coy BY Ma,
H/S ATTORNEYS United States Patent Ofitice 3,232,397 Patented Feb. 1, 1966 3,232,397 CARD CARRYING CASE Paul B. McCoy, Hope Natural Gas ('10., 445 W. Main St., Clarksburg, W. Va. Filed Nov. 7, 1963, Ser. No. 322,185 4 Claims. (Cl. 190-51) This invention relates to improvements in the handling of data processing cards and relates in particular to a new and novel carrying case for data processing cards that is ideally suited for use by meter readers and the like.
It is common practice for public utility companies such as gas, electric and water companies, to process their accounts and eifect their billings by employing data processing machines which utilize data processing cards frequently referred to as Punch Cards. These cards conventionally are punched or provided with holes which permit the data processing machine, among other things, to identify the customer to whom the account or potential billing refers. A meter reader may utilize such cards and apply the information supplied by the meters of the individual customers on their respective punch cards by marking appropriate locations on the cards with a special pencil which leaves a mark with electromagnetic properties. The data processing machines are then disposed to detect and read such markings and automatically calculate the quantity of service utilized by the customer and calculate the bill. Such handling of the accounts and billings of the utility companies greatly expedites and simplifies ofl'ioe procedure so that substantial savings are effected in permitting a relatively small otlice stait' to periodically effect a billing of a large number of customers.
Data processing cards such as those described above must be kept flat, dry and intact to avoid rejection by the data processing machines. For example, such cards may not be bent, torn or allowed to become Wet or dirty if they are to be eiectromechanically handled in an efficient manner. If the data processing cards are even slightly damaged, the machines will reject them.
Individual meter readers may be required to carry hundreds of such cards at one time and each card must be marked and handled individually. Meters are frequently located outside and, consequently, such cards must be marked in all kinds of weather. Although many utility companies have adopted various kinds of carrying cases for their meter readers, none have proved to be entirely satisfactory.
Some of the prior art devices presently employed by utility companies (for their meter readers) make use of wires for securing cards to covers and/ or cases. These devices require extensive preparation prior to their use in that each card must be punched and fed onto the wires. This variety of carrier also may damage the cards by punch hole wear from the wires. The cards are exposed to weather when this type of apparatus is employed.
Another of the presently employed devices is the clamp type carrier which, by arrangement of end clamps and thumb screws, holds the ends of the cards between two covers. This device frequently damages the cards with the clamps or thumb screws distorting the card ends. The cards are also exposed to weather by this type of apparatus.
Further, the prior art devices are of such complex construction as to make them economically unsound.
I have devised a carrying case for data processing cards that is particularly amendable for use by meter readers of utility companies and which is also particularly useful to ofiice personnel which utilize such marked punched cards. My card carrying case is unique in its simplicity of construction, It offers superior protection from weather as compared to the prior known carriers. Of equal significance, it is impossible for the meter reader to spill the cards from my carrier. Each card may be conveniently handled by the meter reader only once so as to minimize potential bending and soiling. The data processing cards are readily removed from the reading compartment and are conveniently placed in a protective storage compartment so as to be kept in any desired sequential order.
My card carrying case is particularly easy to carry and can be used as a portable desk on which the meter reader may mark the cards.
My device consists essentially of a protective envelope or case and a separable insert. Multiple preloaded inserts may be utilized in conjunction with a single protective case. The inserts can be prepared in the ofiice for the meter reader who can pick up his insert with cards installed, insert it in his case, and when the first set of cards has been read, he can return to the oflice, remove the insert and position another insert already filled and prepared with a new set of cards to be readinto the protective case.
In the drawings, I have illustrated a preferred embodiment of my invention in which:
FIGURE 1 is a perspective view of a carrying case encompassing the features of the present invention;
FIGURE 2 is a perspective view of the rectangular shaped insert of the case of FIGURE 1 shown as removed from the protective envelope or case; and
FIGURE 3 is a perspective view of the carrying case of FIGURE 1 shown as closed, snapped shut and positioned on its end.
The carrying case of the present invention is a twopart case consisting of an insert 10 and a protective envelope or case 12.
Insert 10 is made up of two compartments 14 and 16. Compartments 14 and 16 are shown to be separatedby a partial wall consisting of two segments 18 and zo'ex tending transversely across the rectangular insert 10. The forwardmost wall, or that portion held adjacent the meter reader when marking cards, is also a partial wall consisting of two wall segments 22 and 24 extending transversely toward one another.
It will be readily observed that the open spaces be tween the wall segments 18 and 20 and between 22 and 24 enable the meter reader and ofiice personnel to more easily and conveniently grasp and remove cards from the respective compartments 14 and 16. The space between segments 22 and 24 of the forwardmost wall also enables the meter reader to insert his hand mark the cards within compartment 14 even though the stack of cards in this compartment has been depleted and the meter reader must reach deeply into the compartment to reach the topmost card.
The forward compartment 14 is provided with a partial lid consisting of caps 26 and 28 which are attached to and supported by respective side walls 45 and 48 and wall segments 20, 24, 22 and 18. Thus, cards may be inserted into the compartment 14 by flexing (but not creasing) the cards so that their ends extend underneath the partial lids 26 and 28. Cards appropriately horizontally positioned within the compartment 14 will not fall from the insert 10 even though it be overturned while case 12 is in its opened condition.
Compartment 16 is also provided with a partial lid 30 which extends forwardly from the back wall 49 of insert 10. Cards may be slid edgewise into compartment 16 so as to be horizontally positioned within this compartment. Lid 30 appropriately extends over compartment 16 so that a the cards inserted into compartment 16 will not fall from this compartment even though the insert be overturned. v
A thumb cut-away 34 or opening at the front center of the inner case allows pickup of the last few cards in com- Pflflm'ent 14. An opening 38, which is substantially centrally-positioned in the bottom of container 10 but within the rear compartment 16, permits finger push-up of the last few cards for removal from the insert.-
As shown particularly by FIGURE 1, insert 10 is disposed tQ fiL into and slide into the case 12 which is provided with a rectangular portion 40 that is similar in shape and complementary with the insert 10 inasmuch as it is constructed of side walls 42 and 44- which correspond to side Walls 45 and 48 of insert 10, a bottom 4-6 that corresponds to bottom 35 a back wall (not visible) that corresponds to the back wall 49 of insert 1i), and a leather lid portion 50 corresponding to lid portion 313 of insert Ml, plus a partial forward wall consisting of segments 52 and 54 which correspond to wall segments 24 and 22 of insert 11}. Insert 10 is disposed to fit within the rectangular portion 41) of case 12 as shown by FIGURE 1.
Case 12 is provided with a cut-away 56 disposed to mesh with cut-away 34 of insert 10 when the insert is inserted into the case 12 (FIGURE 1) so that the cutaway 54 may be utilized while the insert 1% is positioned within the envelope or case 12.
. Lock-snaps or fasteners 85 provided on sections 22 and 24 of insert 10 and fasteners 87 provided on segments 52 and 54 of case 12 cooperate to secure the insert 19 firmly in the case 12.
Y The case or envelope 12 is provided with a lid 58 which comprises a top cover 61) disposed to cover the open top portion of the insert 10, a front cover 62 disposed to cover the forward open portion and wall segments 22 and 24 of insert 10 and the corresponding segments 52 and 54 of the case 12, a flap 64 disposed to cover cut-aways 5.6 and 34 and extend over the bottom 36 of insert 10 and 46 of case 12 and side flaps 65 and 68 which are disposed to extend over the sides of the case and effect a substantially complete weather-proof enclosure for insert 10.
A snap or fastener member 7% appropriately meshes with. a corresponding fastener member (not shown) attached to. the bottom of the case or envelope 12 so that the lid 53 may be closed and fastened in the manner shown byFIGURE 3.
Lid 58 is provided with an attached sleeve portion '72 (FIGURE 1) disposed to receive a magnetic pencil 74 and is, also provided with straps '76 and 78 that are disposed to receive and hold an instruction card, spare data processing cards or cards corresponding to customers and metersthe meter reader finds not readable, indicated gen erally as 158. u
The envelope or case 12 is additionally provided with straps 82 which are attached to the sides 42 and 44 of the case 12 by means of conventional eye members 8.4, attachment straps 83, and snaps 8 8 Straps 82 are pro.- uidedwith a buckle 89 and perforations 86 so that the straps may be conveniently joined and the case may be slung over the shoulder of a meter reader.
From, the above description it may be seen that data processing cards are flexed and appropriately inserted into the compartment 14 of insert 10 so that the ends of the cards extend under the lids 26 and 28. Insert 10 is then inserted into case 12 and the lid 58 of case 12 is closed. The meter reader then carries the assembly to his route. Upon approaching an appropriate meter the case 12 is swung so that its bottom 46 assumes a horizontal position and the lid 58 is opened in the manner shown by FIG- URE 1 and is thus used as a portable desk. The meter reader then conveniently marks the topmost card with a magnetic pencil, removes the card from under the lids 26 and 28 by flexing it, and slides it edgewise into the compartrnent 16. He closes the lid 58 and proceeds to the next rnet'er. In this manner the cards are sequentially removed from compartment 14 until they fill compartment 16. The meter reader then returns to the oflice wherein the case 12 is opened and the entire insert 10 removed. A newly prepared insert 10 is inserted into the case 12 and the meter reader is prepared to resume his route.
It will, of course, be appreciated that the cards have been loaded initially, perhaps independently of the meter reader, into the compartment 14 in the desired sequential order.
The case 12 oifers unique protection to the insert 10 since, during inclement weather, the lid 58 and flap 64 will partially extend over the opening of the insert 10 while the meter reader is marking a card. Insert 18 will hold the cards so that they will not drop out of the insert even though the case consisting of envelope or case 12 and insert 10 are dropped on the ground.
The size of the insert It is such that the cards appropriat'ely fill the compartments 14 and 16, but are not so rigid as to cause the walls of insert It} to score or adversely bend their edges. The preferred size of insert 10 and compartments 14 and 1 6 depend, of course, on the size of the data processing cards employed.
Insert It may be made of any appropriate substantially rigid material such as metal or plastic. I have successfully employed acid-welding Plexiglas.
The envelope or case 12 is preferably fabricated from leather but, obviously, may be fabricated from imitation leathers and plastic materials commonly used for such things as luggage, camera cases, etc. In the embodiment of the figures, the case shown is fabricated from leather or an imitation leather that is stitched together as shown at 90.
In the utilization of the carrying case in the present invention, it is suggested that a right-handed meter reader should sling the shoulder strap (which is adjustable) over the left shoulder; the left-hand meter reader should, of course, sling the strap over his right shoulder. This places the shoulder strap out of the way of the arm and hand of the reader.
Cards will mark with equal case whether the program of the cards has horizontal or vertical block arrangements for marking.
The leather case cover 58- may be left open while the case is suspended at the meter readers side. The cards will not spill out because of the arrangement of the design of the inner box or insert 10. Even dropping the entire case when loaded normally will not cause a spilling of cards. I
While I have shown and described a preferred embodi? ment of my invention, it may be otherwise embodied within the scope of the appended claims.
1. A carrying case for carrying rectangular data proc- 'ess cards comprising an outer case and a rectangular container insert disposed to lit in said outer case, said insert being formed with a forward and rearward compartment, each said compartment being open at the top and disposed to receive said cards horizontally and in substantially parallel lengthwise alignment, a wall dividing said forward and rearward compartments of said insert and being a partial wall consisting of opposing wall segments extending toward one another from each side Wall leaving a void area therebetween so that said cards may be readily gripped through said void area when removed from said rearward compartment and the forwardmost wall of said insert also being a partial wall consisting of wall segments extending toward one another from each side wall leaving a void area ther'ebetween so as to enhance access to said forward compartment, said outer case having walls extending along the walls of the container insert including wall segments which extend along the wall segments of the forwardmost wall of said insert and a lid extending across the top of the container insert and over said wall segments of the outer case.
2. A carrying case as described in claim 1 and having detachable fastening means between the segments of the forwardmost wall of the container insert and the wall segments of the outer case which extend along the segments of the forwardmost wall of the container insert.
5. A carrying case as described in claim 1 in which the forward compartment of said insert has two lid members extending towards each other from the top of the opposing sidewalls of said insert to cover the end portions of cards inserted into said forward compartment.
4. A carrying case as described in claim 1 in which the rearward compartment of said insert has a partial lid extending forwardly from the rearward Wall of said insert to cover a longitudinal portion of the cards inserted into said compartment.
References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS Downie 12943 Reinhardt 206-73 Sim.
Hains 20673 La Selle 20673 Bigelow.
Fraser 206-73 Miller 150-34 Chester 312- Schocket 34 Miceli 150-51 X JOSEPH R. LECLAIR, Primary Examiner.
FRANKLIN T. GARRETT, Examiner.