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Publication numberUS3283889 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateNov 8, 1966
Filing dateDec 28, 1964
Priority dateDec 28, 1964
Publication numberUS 3283889 A, US 3283889A, US-A-3283889, US3283889 A, US3283889A
InventorsRobert E Hetrick, John W Hetrick
Original AssigneeRobert E Hetrick, John W Hetrick
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Food object holder and drip preventer
US 3283889 A
Abstract  available in
Images(2)
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

1966 R. E. HETRICK ETAL 3,283,889

FOOD OBJECT HOLDER AND DRIP PREVENTER Filed Dec. 28, 1964 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 FIG.|

J I I INVENTORS. 27' 2055/27 Hf TQ/CK 2' Jb/wv Ml. Have/6K Nov. 8, 1966 R. E. HETRICK ETAL 3,

FOOD OBJECT HOLDER AND DRIP PREVENTER Filed Dec. 28, 1964 2 Sheets-Sheet 2' FIG. IO

United States Patent 3,283,889 FOOD OBJECT HOLDER AND DRIP PREVENTER Robert E. Hetrick and John W. Hetrick, both of 22119 Hansom Ave., Torrance, Calif. Filed Dec. 28, 1964, Ser. No. 421,560 3 Claims. (Cl. 20656) Generally speaking, the present invention relates to a holding device which, in a broad sense, may be said to comprise a food object holding device and which, in a preferred exemplary form thereof, may be said to comprise a sandwich holder which also acts as a drip preventer adapted to prevent liquid drippings from the sandwich from falling on ones shirt front during the eating of a sandwich, particularly the type of sandwich which is bought at a location other than home and is consumed without the presence of dishes and a table in the manner of a customary meal. In other words, when one buys such a sandwich and eats same without any dishes or other protective means being provided except the conventional paper wrapping for the rear end of the sandwich, it will normally be found that a relatively juicy sandwich will leak and the juice will tend to soak through such a protective sandwich paper or wrapping and drop onto the eaters shirt front (or dress front in the case of a woman) in a highly undesirable manner. The novel device of the present invention completely prevents this and yet does so through the use of a very inexpensive and simple device which provides a convenient means for feeding the sandwich toward ones mouth as it is progressively eaten away, while retaining sandwich drippings in a positive manner so as to prevent any undesirable dripping of the juices therefrom on any portion of the person eating the sandwich. In fact, the novel sandwich holder and drip preventer of the present invention is of such simple, inexpensive construction as to make it possible to supply one with each sandq wich purchased. After such a purchased sandwich is eaten, the holder device of the present invention may then be thrown away.

Furthermore, it should be noted that the novel holder and drip preventer of the present invention may be made in several forms suitable for holding virtually any size and/or shape of sandwich and, for that matter, various other food objects which might tend to leak. Also, if desired, the holder may be made of a somewhat more permanent type so as to be washable and reuseable in certain forms of the invention.

With the above points in mind, it is an object of the present invention to provide a novel food object holder adapted to hold a food object and to protect a person eating same from drippings therefrom while providing a convenient means for feeding said food object toward the persons mouth.

It is a further object of the present invention to provide a holder of the type referred to in the preceding object, wherein the food object adapted to be held comprises a sandwich and wherein the means for feeding same toward a persons mouth comprises pusher means carried by tray means in which the sandwich is adapted to rest so that the pusher means may move the sandwich toward the persons mouth as it is progressively eaten.

It is a further object of the present invention to pro vide a sandwich holder of the character referred to hereinbefore, wherein the entire device is initially integrally formed and/0r molded of an extremely lightweight material, such as a wood pulp material of paper-like or cardboard-like compositions or a plastic material (which may be of expanded and surface-sealed foam type or of various other suitable types) so that the manufacture of 3283,8859 Patented Nov. 8, 1966 the device is extremely inexpensive to a degree such that it may be used a single time and then thrown away.

It is a further object of the present invention to provide a novel device having the advantages referred to herein and including the features referred to herein, generically and/or specifically, and individually or in combination, and which is of extremely simple, inexpensive construction adapted for mass manufacture at very low cost whereby to be conducive to widespread use thereof.

Further objects are implicit in the detailed description which follows hereinafter (which is to be considered as exemplary of, but not specifically limiting, the present invention), and said objects will be apparent to persons skilled in the art after a careful study of the detailed description which follows hereinafter.

For the purpose of clarifying the nature of the present invention, several exemplary embodiments of the invention are illustrated in the hereinbelow-described figures of the accompanying two sheets of drawings and are described in detail hereinafter.

FIG. 1 is a top plan view of one exemplary embodiment of the invention shown in an actual use relationship with respect to a substantially circular sandwich of the type conventionally known as a hamburger, which comprises a round bun, a fried ground meat patty filling, and various relishes, spices, sauces, and the like-said sandwich being shown in phantom.

FIG. 2 is a fragmentary top plan view, generally similar to FIG. 1, but illustrates the pusher means after it has been digitally moved forwardly to push the hamburger sandwich toward a discharge and egress means comprising the open front of the device to allow a person to progressively eat the projecting edge portion of the hamburger sandwich. In fact, this view shows the apparatus after more than half of the phantom-line hamburger sandwich has already been eaten.

FIG. 3 is a front elevational view of the apparatus when in the relationship shown in FIG. 1 but with the phantom :hamhurger sandwich removed for reasons of drawing simplification and clarity.

FIG. 4 is a right side cross-sectional view, taken substantially along the plane indicated by the arrows 4-4 of FIG. 1, illustrating the slightly rearwardly tipped position of the device when it is placed upon a horizontal auxiliary supporting surface, thus preventing any of the drippings or juice from a sandwich (not shown in FIG. 4) from dripping out of the open front portion of the device.

FIG. 5 is a view similar to FIG. 4, but is taken along a plane substantially as indicated by the arrows 5-5 of FIG. 2 and illustrates the apparatus when the pusher means has been moved forwardly toward the discharge and egress means, comprising the front opening of the device, for feeding a sandwich (not shown) forwardly.

FIG. 6 is a top plan view of a modified form of the invention with the pusher means in fully retracted relationship and with the tray means shown holding a different type of sandwich comprising what is conventionally known as a hot dog, which consists of a longitudinally substantial cylindrical weiner carried between longitudinal half portions of a general similarly shaped longitudinal bun and provided with appropriate spices, seasonings, sauces, relishes, and/or the like.

FIG. 7 is a view generally similar to FIG. 6, but shows the pusher means after it has been digitally pushed forwardly, perhaps in a series of successive steps interspersed by eating operations, so as to correspondingly move the hot dog sandwich forwardly toward the open end, comprising the discharge and egress means into the proper projecting position for allowing a person to progressively eat the projecting end of the. hot dog sandwich.

FIG. 8 is a view generally similar to FIG. 5 of the first form of the invention, but illustrates the second form of the invention and is substantially taken along the plane indicated by the arrows 8- 8 of FIG. 7. However, in this view the broken line hot dog sandwich shown fragmentarily in FIG. 7 has been removed for reasons of drawing simplification and clarity. Also, this view clearly illustrates the rearwardly tipped relationship of the tray means when placed upon an auxiliary horizontal supporting surface, for the same purposes as outlined hereinabove in connection with FIG. 4.

FIG. 9 is a cross-sectional view taken substantially in in the direction of the arrows 99 of FIG. 7.

FIG. 10 is a top plan view generally similar to FIGS. 1 and 6, but illustrates a further modification of the invention adapted to hold a slightly different type of sandwich comprising a conventional sandwich made of a pair of slices of what is commonly known as sandwich bread, each of which is substantially rectangular (actually square in the example shown in phantom) as seen in plan view, with appropriate sandwich filling material being placed therebetween and also with any desired relishes, sauces, seasonings, and so forth, being positioned between the rectangular pieces of sandwich bread. This View shows the pusher means before activation.

FIG. 11 is a view generally similar to FIGS. 2 and 7, although of the modified form of the invention shown in FIG. 10, and clearly illustrates the apparatus after the pusher means has been operated to a substantial degree and has pushed the broken line square type sandwich forwardly to a very substantial degree toward the front opening of the device, comprising the discharge and egress means, to enable a person to progressively eat the projecting edge (actually, one corner) of the sandwich.

FIG. 12 is a front view of the modified sandwich holder shown in FIG. 10, but with the broken line square type sandwich removed for reasons of drawing simplification and clarity.

FIG. 13 is a fragmentary view taken substantially along the plane indicated by the arrows 13--13 of FIG. 11 but with the square type sandwich, shown fragmentarily in phantom in FIG. 11, removed from FIG. 13 for reasons of drawing simplification and clarity. Also, this view clearly illustrates the rearwardly tipped relationship of the tray means when placed upon an auxiliary horizontal supporting surfacethis being for the same purposes as outlined hereinbefore in connection with the description of FIG. 4.

Generally speaking, the exemplary first form of the invention illustrated in FIGS. 1-5 may be said to comprise a sandwich holder and drip preventer generally designated at 21 and including a downwardly recessed tray means 22 and a controllably digitally movably positioned pusher means 23 cooperable for pushing a sandwich, such as the hamburger type sandwich indicated generally in phantom at 24, toward a persons mouth to facili' tate progressively eating the projection portion of the hamburger sandwich 24.

In said exemplary first form of the invention, the downwardly recessed tray means 22 has a bottom wall portion 25 and a laterally enclosing upstanding side wall portion 26 integrally conected with respect thereto and extending partially therearound and having what might be termed a front opening in said side wall portion 26 at what might be termed the front edge or side thereof whereby to effectively comprise sandwich edge discharge and egress means, generally designated by the reference numeral 27, which merely comprises a complete front opening through which the forward edge 28 of the hamburger sandwich 24 normally projects to an extent slightly less than half of the depth, or back-to-front, dimension of the hamburger sandwich 24 so that when in the initial position shown in FIG. 1 the hamburger sandwich 24 will have more than half of the sandwich fully retained within the downwardly recessed tray means and resting on the upper surface of the bottom wall portion 25 thereof.

Such an arrangement, wherein the bottom wall portion 25 of the tray means 22 is of approximately the same side-to-side dimension as (although slightly larger than) the side-to-side dimension of the hamburger sandwich 24 adapted to be received and held thereby and wherein said bottom wall portion 25 in a back-to-front direction has a somewhat smaller dimension which is slightly greater than half the back-to-front dimension of the hamburger 24, provides an arrangement such that the cen ter of gravity of the hamburger" sandwich 24 will lie at approximately the point indicated by the reference numeral 29 in FIG. 1 and, thus the sandwich 24 will be firmly and fully supported by the bottom wall portion 25 of the tray means 22, but will have slightly less than half of the front portion 28 of the hamburger sandwich 24 projecting through and beyond the front opening comprising the abovementioned discharge and egress means 27 so that said projecting sandwich portion 28 can be freely eaten by a person holding the complete tray means 22 in one or both hands.

During such a hamburger sandwich eating operation, the tray means 22 will normally be tipped downwardly somewhat toward the rear thereof, and this will, of course, cause any juices or any other liquid or semiliquid constituents which may leak from the hamburger sandwich 24 to run rearwardly along the upper surface of the bottom wall portion 25 of the tray means 22 toward the rear or back part B of the upstanding side wall portion 26, which will, of course, retain said juices and positively prevent them from leaking downwardly onto the eater in the undesirable manner of prior art hamburgers when eaten with either no protection or with a paper wrapper or bag over the rear end of the hamburger, which nor mally becomes quickly saturated with such hamburger juices and leaks in a highly undesirable manner on the front of the clothing of the person eating the hamburger.

As the initially projecting portion 28 of the hamburger sandwich 24 is eaten away in the manner described above, it may be progressively moved forwardly toward and partially through the discharge and egress means 27, comprising the front opening referred to above, by the pusher means 23 referred to above and which, in the exemplary first form of the invention illustrated, comprises an arcuate upstanding element which extends to a level somewhat above the upstanding side wall portion 26 of the tray means 22 and which is effectively hingedly connected with respect to the left end of said upstanding wall means 26 of the tray means 22 by effective hinge. means H, which actually comprises an effectively weakened but still flexibly interconnected portion of the integral material of which the entire device is formed, such as cardboard, paper board, or various other molded fibrous materials in the case of the exemplary first form of the invention illustrated.

It will be noted that the bottom edge 31 of the pusher means 23 is separate from and slightly spaced above the underlying bottom wall portion 25 of the tray means 22, thus mounting the pusher means 23 only by the left end positioned effective hinge means H for movement between a completely retracted position as shown in FIGS. 1, 3, and 4, when the hamburger sandwich 24 is first placed within the tray means 22, and a forwardly displaced position such as is exemplified by the showing of said pusher means 23 in FIGS. 2 and 5, wherein it has been digitally pushed forwardly to a desired degree such as to project the hamburger sandwich 24 forwardly over the front edge 32 of the bottom wall 25 as is clearly shown in FIG. 2 so that the projecting portion of the previously partly eaten hamburger sandwich 24 now extends forwardly to a degree sufiicient to allow it to be further progressively eaten. This operation of the pusher means 23, of course, can be such as to progressively move the sandwich forwardly even further than as shown in FIG. 2 until the very last portion of the hamburger sandwich 24 has been eaten.

It will be noted that the upper edge 33 of the pusher extends substantially above the level of the lateral upstanding side wall means 26 of the tray means 22 so as to be conveniently accessible for digital engagement when the pusher means is to be pushed forward in the manner indicated in sequence in FIGS. 1 and 2. The small space or clearance 34 between the lower edge 31 of the pusher 23 and the upper surface of the bottom wall portion 25 of the tray means 22 allows the pusher means 23 to be pushed forwardly without pushing any juices which have leaked from the sandwich 24 forwardly at the same time said juices being adapted to run rearwardly under the action of gravity through said clearance space 34 toward the rear portion of the upstanding wall means 26 of the tray means 22. As shown in the figures, said clearance base 34 is somewhat exaggerated and may be reduced in magnitude and still function in accordance with the preceding statement.

In the exemplary first form of the invention illustrated in FIGS. 1-5, the front edge 32 of the bottom wall portion 25 of the tray means 22 is provided with a downwardly directed support means 35 which is adapted to cause the entire tray means 22 to tilt slightly toward the rear when placed on an auxiliary horizontal supporting surface, such as is indicated fragmentarily at 36 in FIGS. 3-5. This will, of course, cause, both a hamburger sandwich such as that shown at 24 in FIGS. 1 and 2, and any juices which have leaked therefrom, to be positively retained within the slightly rearwardly tipped tray means 22.

It should be noted that in the exemplary first form of the invention, the entire device is made of a blank of material, such as cardboard or the like, formed into the downwardly recessed tray means 22 and having the integral pusher means 23 connected therewith and normally extending frontwardly therefrom. Said pusher means 23 may then be forcibly deflected and deformed rearwardly in a manner such as to effectively form the hinge means H and such as to position said pusher means 23 in the presandwich eating relationship most clearly shown in FIGS. 1, 3, and 4. It should also be noted that said downwardly directed support means 35 may be formed by bending downwardly and rearwardly an initially outwardly projecting portion of the subsequent front edge 32 of the bottom wall portion 25. This is most clearly shown in FIGS. 4 and 5.

However, it should also be noted that the device may be manufactured in ways other than those specifically referred to above and may be made of materials other than paper-like or cardboard-like materials and, in certain cases, may be made of plastic material such as polystyrene foam material having compressed and sealed exterior surfaces, or various other types of plastic material may be employed.

However, it is highly advantageous in at least certain forms of the invention to make it of a material inexpensive enough to allow the holder means 21 to be thrown away after a single use.

Also, it is within the broad scope of the present invention to make the complete holder means 21 of an edible material, such as a relatively crisply baked material made of dough or the like and appropriately surface sealed, thus providing a holder which can be eaten completely or in part, either along with the sandwich or subsequent thereto, if desired.

FIGS. 6-9 illustrate a slightly modified form of the invention, and portions which functionally correspond to those of the first form of the invention illustrated in FIGS. 1-5 are designated by similar reference characters, primed, however. In this modification, it will be noted that the downwardly recessed tray means 22 is of a different configuration from the tray means 22 of the first form of the invention and actually simulates in appearance a longitudinal trough having the upstanding wall means 26 around three sides thereof essentially comprising the parallel left and right sides thereof and rear side thereof as clearly shown in FIGS. 6 and 7, while the front side thereof has no such upstanding wall means 26 and effectively comprises a front opening or discharge and egress means 27 equivalent to the discharge and egress means 27 of the first form of the invention.

In this modification, the pusher means 23' is not integrally connected to the tray means 22 in the manner of the first form of the invention, but instead comprises what might be termed a slider member 23 provided with slider guide means generally indicated at 37 and comprising two slider guide means side portions 378 and a slider guide means bottom portion 37B, all of which slide along the corresponding inside surfaces of the upstanding side wall means 26 and the bottom wall portion 25 of the tray means 22' so that the modified type of sandwich 24', comprising what is conventionally known as a hot dog type sandwich, can be forwardly moved so as to extend through and beyond the discharge and egress means 27 and the front edge 32' of the bottom wall means 25' to any desired degree to facilitate the eating of the forwardly projecting portion 28' of said hot dog sandwich 27'.

Also, in this modified form of the invention, a front portion of the bottom wall means 25' is provided with a downwardly projecting supporting means 35 functionally similar to the corresponding element 35 of the first form of the invention and operable for the same purposes when the entire modified tray means 22 is placed upon an auxiliary horizontal supporting surface 36' as is clearly shown in FIG. 8.

Otherwise, this modified form of the invention is similar to the first form of the invention described in detail hereinbefore and, therefore, no further description of this modification is thought necessary.

FIGS. 10-13 illustrate a further modification of the invention, and parts thereof which correspond to the first form of the invention illustrated in FIGS. 1-5 and described in detail hereinbefore, are designated by similar reference characters, doubly primed, however.

It will be noted that, in the modification of FIGS. 10-13, all portions thereof are substantially the same as the first form of the invention with the exception of the fact that the shape of the tray means 22" is no longer such as to comprise a portion of a cylinder but rather comprises a slightly more than a half portion of a rectangular parallelepiped, and, correspondingly, the pusher means 23" is straight rather than arcuately curved. These modifications are for the purpose of enabling the tray means 22" to receive slightly more than one-half of a square or rectangular type sandwich 24 made with conventional sandwich slices of conventional sandwich bread which are square or rectangular in shape. Since all portions of this modification of the invention, with the exception of the shape-changed portions just referred to, are essentially the same as the first form of the invention described in detail hereinbefore, no further detailed description of this modification is thought necessary.

It should be noted that any of the various pusher means may be provided with aperture means therethrough, if desired, for the purpose of facilitating the rearward passage of sandwich leakage juices therethrough. This may be in lieu of, or as a supplement to, the type of clearance space shown at 34 in the first form of the invention and at 34" in the third form of the invention. It should also be noted that the tray supporting means, such as shown at 35, 35', and 35" in the three forms of the invention illustrated, may be modified or, in certain forms of the invention, eliminated entirely.

It should be understood that the figures and the specific description thereof set forth in this application are for the purpose of illustrating the present invention and are not to be construed as limiting the present invention to the precise and detailed specific structure shown in the figures and specifically described hereinbefore. Rather,

the real invention is intended to include substantially equivalent constructions embodying the basic teachings and inventive concept of the present invention.

We claim:

1. A food object holder and drip preventer, comprising: downwardly recessed tray means having a bottom wall portion and a laterally partially enclosing upstanding side wall portion extending partially therearound and having a front opening in said side wall portion effectively comprising food object discharge and egress means, said bottom wall portion being, in a width direction, of a size adapted to receive thereon a specific type of food object and being somewhat smaller in a back-to-front direction extending between a back part of said upstanding side wall portion and said front opening in said side wall portion whereby to cause a front portion of said food object to project forwardly into said discharge and egress means beyond a front edge of a corresponding front part of said bottom wall portion to facilitate eating said forwardly projecting portion of said food object in an unobstructed manner; and pusher means oontrollably digitally movably positioned within said downwardly recessed tray means between said back part of said upstanding side wall portion and said discharge and egress means for digitally caused movement toward said discharge and egress means for forcing said food object toward said discharge and egress means into a forwardly projecting relationship with respect to and beyond the front edge of the corresponding front part of said bottom wall portion; said bottom wall portion of said tray means being provided with downwardly directed support means adapted to rest upon an underlying substantially horizontally auxiliary supporting surface, and being so positioned and shaped as to cause said bottom wall portion to have said front edge thereof higher than a back edge thereof in a rearwardly downwardly tilted relationship with respect to said underlying substantially horizontal auxiliary supporting surface.

2. A food object holder and drip preventer, comprising: downwardly recessed tray means having a bottom wall portion and a laterally partially enclosing upstanding side Wall portion extending partially therearound and having a front opening in said side wall portion effectively comprising food object discharge and egress means, said bottom wall portion being, in a width direction, of a size adapted to receive thereon a specific type of food object and being somewhat smaller in a back-to-front direction extending between a back part of said upstanding side wall portion and said front opening in said side wall portion whereby to cause a front portion of said food object to project forwardly into said discharge and egress means beyond a front edge of a corresponding front part of said bottom wall portion to facilitate eating said forwardly projecting portion of said food object in an unobstructed manner; and pusher means controllably digitally movably positioned within said downwardly recessed tray means between said back part of said upstanding side Wall portion and said discharge and egress means for digitally caused movement toward said discharge and egress means for forcing said food object toward said discharge and egress means into a forwardly projecting relationship with respect to and beyond the front edge of the corresponding front part of said bottom wall portion; said front edge of said bottom wall' portion being integrally provided with downwardly directed support means adapted to rest upon an underlying substantially horizontal auxiliary supporting surface, and being so positioned and shaped as to cause said bottom wall portion to have said front edge thereof higher than a back edge thereof in a rearwardly downwardly tilted relationship with respect to said underlying substantially horizontal auxiliary supporting surface.

3. A food object holder and drip preventer, comprising: downwardly recessed tray means having a bottom wall portion and a laterally partially enclosing upstanding side Wall portion extending partially therearound and having a front opening in said side wall portion effectively comprising food object discharge and egress means, said bottom wall portion being, in a width direction, of a size adapted to receive thereon a specific type of food object and being somewhat smaller in a back-to-fr-o-nt direction extending between a back part of said upstanding side wall portion and said front opening in said side wall portion whereby to cause a front portion of said food object to project forwardly into said discharge and egress means beyond a front edge of a corresponding front part of said bottom wall portion to facilitate eating said forwardly projecting portion of said food object in an unobstructed manner; and pusher means controllably digitally movably positioned within said downwardly recessed tray means between said back part of said upstanding side wall portion and said discharge and egress means for digitally caused movement toward said discharge and egress means for forcing said food object toward said discharge and egress means into a forwardly projecting relationship with respect to and beyond the front edge of the corresponding front part of said bottom wall portion; said pusher means having a bottom edge spacedly positioned above the top surface of said bottom wall portion of said tray means and together therewith defining a liquid flow clearance space to allow liquid leaking from said food object during the eating of the projecting front portion thereof to pass rearwardly relative to said pusher means and not be swept forwardly by said pusher means toward said discharge and egress means.

References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS HUGO O. SCHULZ, Primary Examiner.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US1869609 *Oct 16, 1930Aug 2, 1932Morales MatiasSandwich holder
US2011383 *Dec 14, 1934Aug 13, 1935Samuel R TaylorContainer for frankfurters and other food articles
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4936479 *Apr 17, 1989Jun 26, 1990Dan LevyHamburger holder
US4940190 *May 16, 1989Jul 10, 1990Amcor LimitedContainer
US5381905 *May 4, 1993Jan 17, 1995Grupoutil De. De Prod. De. Util. Ltda.Disposable support for pizza
Classifications
U.S. Classification206/527, 206/817, 206/815, 426/115
International ClassificationA47G19/02, A47G21/00
Cooperative ClassificationA47G19/02, A47G21/001, Y10S206/815, Y10S206/817
European ClassificationA47G21/00B, A47G19/02