US 3252492 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
y 1966 P. A. MARCHANT 3,252,492
CONTAINER AND PIVO'I'ED CLOSURE Filed June 1, 1.964 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 44 I6 49 5 95 INVENTOR.
PAUL A. MARCHANT ATTORNEY May 24, 1966 P. A. MARCHANT 3,252,492
CONTAINER AND PIVOTED CLOSURE Filed June 1, 1964 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 IIHHI I IIIIII IllIIIEHFIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIII I N E N TOR.
PAUL A. MARCHANT ATTORNEY United States Patent C) 3,252,492 CUNTAINER AND PIVOTED CLUSURE Paul A. Marchant, Kansas City, Mo., assignor to Renal] Drug and Chemical Company, Los Angeles, Calif a corporation of Delaware Filed .Iune l, 1964, Ser. No. 371,393 3 Claims. (Cl. 150.5)
The present invention is directed to a container and closure fabricated from plastic materials, such as polyethylene, polypropylene, polyvinyl chloride, polycarbonate, etc., and is designed to provide an inexpensive, but aesthetically appealing, container.
The present trend in the packaging field indicates that the most desirable containers are ones having a large capacity in proportion to the quantity of plastic material therein, and having a captive snapon closure. Preferably the closure should form a continuation of the container walls to provide a unitary package appearance. The package must be of simple inexpensive construction, both from the standpoint of quantity of material used and the cost of the molds for producing the package. Ideally, the closure is captive with the container so that the container may be opened without completely removing the closure therefrom. The structure of the closure must provide a positive seat against the upper end of the dispensing opening of the container thereby sealing the container to minimize the ingress and egress of vapors and air which may-have a detrimental effect upon the contents of the container. The cap and its relationship with the container must be arranged so that the cap, after opening the container, remains in the open position and in a position which is not obstructing the dispensing opening of the container. Many of the captive caps presently on the market are hin'geably connected to the container by an integral resilient plastic member; however, these caps require substantial manipulation to position them away from the dispensing opening of the container.
A desirable attribute for a container used in modern merchandising techniques requires that the containers be stackable vertically. It is not suflicient that the containers be fabricated such that they can be positioned one above the other but rather they must be specifically constructed so that they lock when stacked vertically. This locking feature prevents the inadvertent tumbling of an entire display of containers due to the slight jarring of one or more of the containers.
The hingeable connection between the closure and container must provide an assemblage which is simple and inexpensive to assemble by automatic equipment.
Ideally, containers usable in the merchandising trade today must be adapted to a variety of surface configurations. Thus according to the present invention the container portion of the package is blow molded so that it may be readily adapted for various surface configurations.
In blow molding of containers it is important that the container design provide for a mode of afiixation of the closure to the container but that the design does not result in a large number of imperfect containers on the production line. Thus, if the design of the container is such that the usable thickness of the walls is difficult to maintain in production due to the manner of afiixing the closure, technical production difficulties arise with a resulting increase in scrap rate or decrease in production rate.
The container and closure according to the present invention contains all of the desirable features noted above and avoids the difiiculties frequently encountered with containers of this type.
Patented May 24, 1966 The drawings illustrate a present preferred embodiment of the invention in which:
FIGURE 1 is a perspective of a container and closure according to the present invention, with the closure in the open position, and parts broken away for clarity;
FIGURE 2 is a front elevation view of a container and closure according to the present invention, with the closure in a closed position;
FIGURE 3 is a rear side elevation view thereof;
FIGURE 4 is a side elevation view thereof;
FIGURE 5 is a cross section taken on line 55 of FIGURE 3;
FIGURE 6 is a cross section taken on line 66 of FIGURE 4;
FIGURE 7 is an enlarged fragmentary view of the hinge portion of the container shown in FIGURE 3;
FIGURE 8 is a cross section taken on line 88 of FIGURE 7;
FIGURE 9 is an enlarged fragmentary view of the container neck and closure;
FIGURE 10 is a side elevation view of the hinge structure for the closure; v I
FIGURE 11 is a bottom plan view of the closure;
FIGURE 12 is-an enlarged cross section taken on line 12--12 of FIGURE 7;
FIGURE 13 is an enlarged cross section taken on line 13--13 of FIGURE 7;
FIGURE 14 is a perspective of a modified form of the present invention;
FIGURE 15 is a fragmentary vertical cross section of the modified form of the invention, similar to FIG- URE 5; and,
FIGURE 16 is a vertical cross section of the modified form of cap, with parts removed for clarity.
Briefly the present invention is directed to a plastic container and closure wherein the container is blow molded in the form of a single unit and has side, bottom and top walls providing a hollow chamber for housing a commodity, an upstanding neck is provided on the top wall and has a central dispensing opening extending axially through the neck, and the closure is hingeably mounted to the container and adapted to be swung to and from a position closing the dispensing opening with an attaching member engageable with the upstanding neck to maintain the closure in a closed position over the dispensing opening. The hingeable mount ing is integral with the closure and has a pintle portion engageable and pivoted in a slot in the container wall. Preferably the pintle is assembled into the slot in the container wall by a snapping action wherein the walls of the slot are elastically and resiliently deformed outwardly away from each other to admit the pintle and thereafter return to their original position which substantially encloses the pintle but provides a bearing surface for rotation of the pintle and its associated closure. Ideally the slot is key-hole shaped with a circular portion which receives the pintle and a longitudinal opening providing ingress and egress from the circular portion. In the preferred embodiment the pintle is circular in cross section, which aids in introducing the pintle into the slot in the container wall and insures a simple and efiicient snap-together assembly of the closure to the container.
Referring specifically to the drawings, the container, generally designated 15, has a swingably (or pivotally) mounted closure, generally designated 16. The container includes front and back walls 17 and 18, side walls 1a and 20, bottom wall 21, and top wall 22. The bottom wall is preferably recessed in its central portion and is provided with a continuous rectangular leg 23 joined to the side walls 17-20 by an inwardly directed shoulder 24.
The dimensions of the outside periphery of the leg 23 are such that the leg is positionable within the top of the closure in the manner to be described hereinafter. This provides the locking feature between a vertical stack of the packages.
The walls of the container are integral with each other and provide a hollow chamber 25 which contains the desired commodity which is stored or sold in the package.
The container top wall 22 has a continuous depression 26 around its periphery with the exception of a depressed area 27 on the rear of the container for receiving portions of the hinge member of the closure. The depressed portion 26 receives the lower edge of the closure in the manner to be described hereinafter.
A neck 28 is integral with, centrally disposed on, and upstands from the top wall 22 and has a central dispensing opening 29. A groove 30 (FIGURE 9) is provided concentrically in the inner face of the neck 28 and slightly below the upper end 31 of the neck. This groove 30 has an upper surface 32 disposed between about 20-40, and preferably 30", from the horizontal and a lower surface 33 which is disposed at about 3050, and preferably 40", from the horizontal.
Referring specifically to FIGURES 3, 7, 8, 12 and 13, the recessed portion 27, on the rear of the container, extends downwardly below the recessed portion 26 and is provided with key-hole shaped openings 35 extending transversely out each side of the depressed portion 27 in the manner shown in FIGURE 7. These key-hole shaped openings include a circular portion 36 and a slot portion 37. The openings are generally referred to as slots or key-hole shaped slots herein. As shown in FIGURE 13,, the slots are formed by portions of the back wall 18 of the container and it should be noted that an open space 39 is provided on the upper side of the slot 35 and the container chamber 25 is below the slot 35, such that the walls 40 and 41, forming the sides of the slot, are not too rigid and thus have resiliency and give so that the pintle portion of the closure, to be described hereinafter, can be readily snapped into the circular opening 36 by entry through the slot 37 by spreading the slot defining walls 40 and 41 outwardly. The walls 40 and 41 will return to their original positions due to the memory of the plastic.
Referring to the closure: 21 substantially planar portion 43 is surrounded by front and back walls 44 and 45 and side walls 46 and 47. The walls 4447 extend upwardly above the planar portion to provide a depressed area 48 which receives the lower end of the container and specifically the legs 23 as hereinbefore described to lock a vertical stack of the containers. When stacked, the flange 24 of the top container is slightly above the top edge of closure walls 4447 and leg 23 is entirely within area 48.
The walls 4447 of the closure extend downwardly so that when the closure is in the closed position on the container, the lower edges of the walls are substantially seated within the depressed portion 26 of the container, with the exception of the recessed portion 27 of the back wall of the container, to provide aesthetic continuity between the container and closure.
The back wall 45 of the closure has an extension hinge bar 41 (see FIGURE 10) having a pintle 50 affixed to its lower end with pivot bars 51 and 52 extending transversely outwardly from and coplanar with the hinge bar 49. The pivot bars 51 and 52 are snapped into portion 35 by spreading walls 40 and 41 apart as previously described, and are free to rotate within the circular portion 36 thereby permitting the closure to pivot relative to the container in the manner shown in FIGURE 1. The inner surfaces of portion 35 provide bearing surfaces for the pivot bars and have sufficient surface engagement between portion 35 and bars 51 and 52 to hold the closure in an open upright position, as shown in FIGURE 1, and the closure is substantially immovable after opening.
The underside of planar portion 43 of the closure has a circular downwardly directed continuous rib 60 afiixed to its underside, which has a peripheral dimension substantially corresponding to the inside peripheral dimension of the top of the neck 28. The outer face of rib 60 is beveled at 61 at about 40-60, preferably 50, from the horizontal so that the rib may readily be carnmed inwardly into the dispensing opening 29 of the neck 28 during closing of the container. The rib 60 is continuous except for a front portion wherein a downwardly directed, coextensive, integral attaching member 62 is affixed to the underside of the planar portion 43 for about 2540, preferably 30, on each side of the center line and provides a front face 63 which engages the inside surface of the neck 28, as shown in FIGURE 9, and has an outwardly extending rib 64 having a top surface 65 sloped outwardly and downwardly to approximately match surface 32 and a bottom surface 66 sloped upwardly about 50 from the horizontal. The lower sloped surface 66 effectively cams the connecting unit 62 into the dispensing opening 29 of the neck during closing of the container and the upper surface 65 of the con nector unit engages within the groove 30 in the manner shown in FIGURE 9 to effectively hold the closure in tightly closed position on the container; however, surfaces 65 and 36 are sloped to readily slide apart during opening the container thereby permitting a simple and easy opening of the container. It should be noted that the underside of the planar portion 43 of the closure tightly engages the upper end 31 of the neck thereby providing an effective seal to minimize contamination of the container contents.
An additional important aspect of this invention is that the pivot bars 51 and 52 arecaptively held in openings 35 against axial movement of the bars in the openings. This insures a positive, repeative opening and closing of the container with no likelihood of closure misalignment.
In the ideal package according to this invention, the dimensions between the surface engagement of the pivot bars and opening 35, and the engagement of the top of neck 28 with the underside of portion 43 (particularly adjacent rib 60 on the side toward the hinge connector 49) are such that the pivot bars are slightly stressed in a downward U-shape so that the bars are resiliently pulling the closure toward the container to provide an effective seal at the top of the neck. The upper rear portion 31 of neck 29 functions as a fulcrum in this structure; however, the front portion 31 of the neck is held in sealing contact by rib 64; therefore the seal on the front of the closure is not affected.
FIGURES 14-16 illustrate a modified form of the present invention. The container has side, bottom and top walls 17-22 with a peripheral depressed area 26 which receives the lower edge of a modified cap 70 pivotally mounted to the container, all basically constructed and arranged in the manner previously described.
The depressed area 26 has an inwardly cut groove 71 formed in the vertical face thereof. This groove can extend across the entire length of the face, but the preferred embodiment, shown in the figures, has a limited length and is centrally located.
The upstanding neck 28, which provides a dispensing passage 29 through the top wall 22, has an upper face 72 with a continuous, upstanding rib 73 concentric with the passage 29.
The cap 70 is constructed and arranged like the cap previously described, including side and end walls 44-47 closed by a top planar portion 43 providing a recessed top area 48. A downwardly extending, continuous ridge 74 is afiixed to'the underside of planar portion 43 and is concentrically located slightly outside the periphery of the upper end of neck 28. The lowerend of ridge 74 is beveled inwardly. A compressible liner 75, such as foamed rubber or polyurethane, or paper or the like, is
aiiixed (preferably by gluing) to the planar portion 43 within the ridge 74.
A lock ridge 76 is integral with the inside of the central portion of the lower edge of front wall 44 of the cap. The lock ridge is dimensioned to snap into the groove 71 to maintain the cap is closed position on the container as shown in FIGURE 15. When the cap is in closed position, the liner 75 is compressed between the upper face 72 of neck 28 and the lower face of planar portion 43 with rib 73 effectively compressing the liner in a circular ring around the neck, thereby sealing the container contents from outside contaminants and moisture. Since the ridge 74 is outside the neck 28, the liner is effectively compressed between face 72 (and rib 73) and the inside face of the ridge to provide a secondary seal.
While I have described the present preferred embodiment of my invention, it may be otherwise embodied within the scope of the following claims:
1. A plastic container and cap, comprising:
(a) said container having a hollow body formed by side and bottom walls, a top wall enclosing the upper end of the hollow body and having a central dispensing opening with an integral upstanding neck forming a continuation of the opening,
(b) said cap including a horizontal planar portion having a bottom face engaged with the top end of the upstanding neck,
(c) a rib extending downward from said bottom face of the cap and positionable within the dispensing opening in engagement with the inside surface of the dispensing opening in said neck,
(d) another rib extending downward from said bottom face of the cap and disposed within said dispensing opening,
(e) a depression in the inside surface of the dispensing opening in said neck, said another rib being engageable in the depression to releasably retain the cap in closed position on the container,
(f) a downwardly depending flange on the periphery of the cap planar portion, the flange extending into engagement with the upper extremity of the container,
(g) an extension plate depending downwardly from and coplanar with the flange,
(h) a pintle coplanar and integral with the lower end of said extension plate, portions of the pintle extending transversely beyond each side of the extension plate,
(1) an upper portion of the container side wall having a recessed area sufficiently large to receive the lower end of said extension plate,
(j) a second elongated recess communicating with and extending transversely from each side of said recessed area, each second recess receiving one of said pintle portions by snapping the portion therein, said pintle portions pivoting within said second recesses to swingably mount the cap to the container.
2. A plastic container and cap, comprising:
(a) said container having a hollow body formed by side and bottom walls, a top wall enclosing the upper end of the hollow body and having a central dispens ing opening with an integral upstanding neck form ing a continuation of the opening,
(b) said cap including a planar portion having a bottom face positionable over said dispensing opening,
(c) a ridge extending downwardly from said bottom face and positionable slightly outside said upstanding neck,
(d) a compressible liner positioned within the confines of said ridge and having a lower face engageable with the upper end of said neck,
(e) a downwardly depending flange on the periphery of the cap planar portion, the flange extending into engagement with the upper extremity of the container,
(f) an extension plate depending downwardly from and coplanar with the flange,
(g) a pintle coplanar and integral with the lower end of said extension plate, portions of the pintle ex tending transversely beyond each side of the extension plate,
(h) an upper portion of the container side Wall having a recessed area sufficiently large to receive the lower end of said extension plate,
(i) a second elongated recess communicating with and extending transversely from each side of said recessed area, each second recess receiving one of said pintle portions by snapping the portion therein, said pintle portions pivoting within said second recesses to swingably mount the cap to the container,
(j) snap-together means joining the cap to the container to maintain the cap in closed position thereon.
3. A plastic container and cap according to claim 2,
(a) an inwardly directed rib on the inner face of the cap flange, said rib being on the opposite side of the cap from the pintle,
(b) a groove in the container adapted to receive said rib when the cap is in closed position to maintain the cap in said position.
References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,679,878 6/ 1954 Stine.
2,764,199 9/1956 Tupper 0.5 2,889,087 6/1959 Paull et a1. 220-31 3,023,923 3/1962 Geib et a1. 22031 3,043,354 7/1962 Fitzgerald 150-0.5 3,133,662 5/1964 Seidler 150O.5 3,139,208 6/1964 Irwin et al. 1500.5
THERON E. CONDON, Primary Examiner.
JOSEPH R. LECLAIR, Examiner.
J. B. MARBERT, Assistant Examiner.