US 3298416 A
Abstract available in
Claims available in
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Jan. 17, 1967 J. M. GRADY 3,
' CARRYING HANDLE AND CONTAINER Filed Oct. 18, 1965 I 3 Sheets-Sheet 1 Jan. 17, 1967 J. M. GRADY CARRYING HANDLE AND CONTAINER s sheets-sheet 2 Filed Oct. 18, 1965 Jan. 17, 1967 J. R D 3,298,416
-GARRYING HANDLE AND CONTAINER Filed Oct. 18, 1965 3 Sheets-Sheet 5 United States PatentOfiice 3,298,416 Patented Jan. 17, 1967 3,298,416 CARRYING HANDLE AND CONTAINER James M. Grady, Mount Prospect, 11]., assignor to Morton International, Inc., Chicago, 111., a corporation of Delaware Filed on. 18, 1965, Ser. No. 502,761 3 Claims. Cl. 150-12 This application is a continuation-in-part of the prior application of James M. Grady, Serial No. 414,764, filed November 30, 1964, entitled, Carrying Handle and Container, now abandoned.
This invention relates to pliable :plastic containers with carrying handles and, more specifically, to a low-cost, high-strength, integrally-formed plastic handle of a versatile and unique design which is integrally secured to a filmic plastic container or bag so as to permit the con- .venient and safe carrying of a flowable material therein,
e.g., a liquid or a granulated, pulverulent or p-articulated solid.
Modern packaging trends include the exploitation'of low-cost pliable plastic, such as filmic polyethylene, polypropylene and the like. In addition to low cost, plastic materials have a number of advantages as a packaging medium for flowable materials, as the art fully recognizes.
For example, such containers are readily and inexpensively fabricated from plastic sheet stock, which is substantially inert, relatively impervious, water repellent, and insensitive to moisture, and has a high strength-to-weight ratio and a low weight-to-carrying-capacity ratio. Moreover, the container may optionally be transparent to show off the included product, may be made in a wide variety of colors, and can be readily imprinted with desired indi-cia such as brand name, weight, volu me, identification of contents, directions for use, or other desired legends.
A particularly-vexing problem, however, has been the design of a suitable low-cost, high-strength carrying handle for such filmic containers, particularly one which can be secured to either the flat surfaces or the peripheral edges thereof. Such a handle must be capable of safely bearing heavy loads, e.g., SO-lb. lots of fertilizer, rock salt, or the like, for home dispensing, without cutting into the hand of the carrier. It must also transfer and distribute the carrying stresses substantially evenly to the filmic Walls of the bag so that minimum-thickness plastic can be used for such walls. Otherwise, heavier-gauge, higher-cost plastic would be required. The handlemust also be secured without piercing the plastic.
niques would create points or nuclei of weakness in'plastic material from which tears or rips could rapidly propagate, even under minimal stress. The handle must meet still other requirements, as more fully indicated in the following objects.
It is therefore an object of the prevent invention to cope with the aforementioned problem and more specifically to provide a low-cost, high-strength, integrally-formed plastic handle which is readily afiixable to pliable-walled plastic containers or bags, whether they are of the gusseted, pillow or other types.
It is another object of the present invention to provide a plastic handle which is afiixable to either the fiat surfaces or end extremities of bags of varying wall thicknesses.
It is a further object of the present invention to provide the basic design for a plastic handle, the dimensions of which can be varied in particular embodiments without change of the basic design, as dictated by cost and strength considerations.
It is a still further object of the present invention to provide a low-cost plastic handle-and-container combina- Perforations resulting from stitching, stapling, riveting, or similar attachment tech-' tion which can be shipped flat when empty, regardless of container configuration or location of handle.
It is a still further object of the present invention to provide a peel-resistant, high-strength plastic handle of stress-distributing design which will not told or collapse under load and will permit the use of thin-wall filmic plastic for the carrying of heavy, fiowable material.
These and other objects of the present invention will be apparent as the detailed description thereof proceeds.
' The objects are achieved by an integrally-formed, allplastic carrying handle which comprises an elongated securing web which is longitudinally slotted along one side thereof and is preferably progressively thickened or increased in cross section adjacent such slotted side to accommodate the slot. Convergently-directioned support webs at the extremities of the securing web and at the other longitudinal side thereof connect the securing web with an elongated hand-gripping portion. The support webs have stress-distributing profiles at the internal juncture with the securing web. The elongated hand-grip portion is flattened or otherwise presents a stress-distributing contour at the normally-downward-faeing surface, which forms the principal area of hand contact.
The plastic handle and handle-container combination of the present invention will be more clearly understood from the following detailed description, which should be read in conjunction with the accompanying drawings, wherein:
FIGURE 1 is a perspective view of the upper portion of a pliable plastic container with the plastic handle of the present invention secured to the upper edge-seam thereof;
FIG. 2 is a side elevation view of the handle and portion of the bag seam or sealing strip;
FIG. 3 is an end elevation view of the handle;
FIG. 4 is a top plan view thereof;
FIG. 5 is a partial section view at section line 55 of FIG. 2, omitting the container;
FIG. 6 is an enlarged section view at section line 6-6 of FIG. 2;
, FIG. 7 is an enlarged section view at section line 7-7 of FIG. 2;
FIG. 8 is a partial section view similar to FIG. 7 but illustrating attachment of the handle to the Walls of a container without a sealing strip;
FIG. 9 is also a partial section view similar to FIG. 7 but illustrating attachment of the handle to a thick-wall container without a sealing strip;
FIG. 10 is a partial *side elevation view illustrating a modification of the handle of FIGS. 1-9 for purposes of greater hand comfort;
FIG. 11 is an end elevation view of another modification of the present handle, which modification facilitates attachment to the flat surfaces of a container wall instead of an edge thereof;
FIG. 12 illustrates the attachment of the handle of FIG. 11 to the container wall;
modification of the present handle, which modification also lends itself to heavy-duty applications;
FIG. 19 is a half-scale top plan view thereof; FIG. 20 is a full-scale side elevation view thereof; and FIG. 21 is a full-scale section view at section line 21- 21 of FIG. 18.
Referring to the drawings and initially to the embodiment of FIGS. 1-9, FIG. 1 shows a gusseted, filmic plastic bag 20 encasing granulated, particulated or pulverant solid material 12. The opposed sides 14 and 16 of bag are sealed together at the top by a plastic strip or scaling seam 18 which is folded over and heat sealed to the bag edges by convention-a1 plastic welding techniques, e.g., direct contact heating, ultrasonic heating, or the like. Plastic handle 20 is then centrally located and afiixed thereto, preferably by similar heat-sealing methods, or optionally may be adhered thereto by adhesives, cements, plastic solvents, or the like, all as recognized by those skilled in the plastic arts. Because plastic handle 20 has a degree of pliability and flowability under the preferred heat-welding securing technique, irregularities in the wall thickness of the bag or in the previously-sealed seams thereof are inherently compensated for.
Handle 20 and bag 10, including sealing strip 18, are preferably formed from the same type or compatible type of thermoplastic material, optimally having substantially the same melting point. This facilitates heat welding and assures a substantially uniform integral structure after welding, which is resistant to delamination. By compatible type is meant that the plastic or plastics chosen for the handle and bag must at least be permanently aflixable to one another (and thus delamination resistant) by the use of heat, cement, solvents, adhesives, or the like, excluding piercing techniques such as sewing.
Among the plastics which may be considered for the handle and/or the filmic bag portion ar polyethylene (including cross-linked, linear and blends thereof), polypropylene, polyvinylchloride, polyvinylchloride-acetate copolymer, polyvinylidene chloride (Saran), polystyrene, rubber hydrochloride (Pliofilm), polyethylene terephthalate (Mylar), the polyesters, or the like, preferably polyethylene. Laminations or coatings of two or more of such thermoplastics may also be advantageously employed. As those skilled in the art will recognize, some plastics would be more suitable for the filmic container but because of softness or the like may be less than ideal for the handle portion.
As shown in FIGS. 2, 3, 4 and 5, carrying handle 20 comprises elongated securing web 22 which contains elongated securing slot 24 along one side thereof having a depth of approximately one-half the width of web 22. As is particularly apparent in FIG. 3 (as well as in FIGS. 4, 5, 7, 8 and 9), web 22 is thickened or progressively increased in cross section adjacent the slotted portion so as to accommodate the slot. The total thickness of the two sides of the slot, i.e., skirts 22a and 22b, need not necessarily be as thick as the thinnest portion of web 22 because the plastic material of the side walls of the bag encased within the slot and, after heat welding thereof, forming an integral part thereof, contributes to the over-all thickness and strength.
Convergently-directioned support webs 26 and 28 are located at the extremities of securing web 22 and have stress-distributing contours or profiles 30 and 32, respectively, at the internal junctures with securing web 22. The external junctures of support webs 26 and 28 with securing web 22 are also faired so as to minimize stress concentration.
Elongated hand-grip portion 34 connects the upper extremities of support webs 26 and 28 so as to form a convenient hand opening, the internal and external junctures having substantial radii of curvature to avoid stress concentration, as shown. The thickened cross section of handgrip portion 34 is extended at 36 and 38 into support webs 26 and 28 so as to reinforce same and permit an esthetic tapering design for the support webs without sacrifice of strength. The upper internal contour of the support webs and thickened extensions of the hand-grip portion may optionally be blended together as illustrated by 26' and 36' of FIG. 10 to eliminate any narrow surfaces which may tend to cut into the hand or fingers of the carrier.
As shown in FIG. 6, the underside or normally-downward-facing surface of the hand-grip portion 34, which is the principal hand-contacting face, is substantially flattened for carrying comfort. In the aforementioned embodiment of FIG, 10, the flattened undersurface of the hand-grip portion is extended into the supporting webs, also for comfort reasons.
The versatility of the design of the handle in accommodating various bag thicknesses is illustrated in FIGS. 7, 8 and 9. In FIG. 7 the sides of slot 24 are spaced so as to accommodate the combined thicknesses of opposed side walls 14 and 16 of the bag as well as plastic strip 18. If the material to be encompassed by the side walls 22a and 22b of slot 24 is less than the spacing thereof, such as suggested by bag walls 40 and 42 in FIG. 8, the sides 22a and 22b can simply be pinched together in the sealing operation. Similarly, if the material to be encompassed is thicker than the spacing, as suggested by bag walls 44 and 46 in FIG. 9, the sides 22a and 22b can be distended outwardly to accommodate the increased thickness.
While a particular embodiment of a handle of the present invention may thus be employed for bags having various wall thicknesses, with or without the additional sealing strips, it should be recognized that the desigfi of the handle also lends itself to custom manufacture, if desired. Accordingly, if it is desired to tailor make a given embodiment for a particular bag thickness, simple mold adjustments can be made so that the spacing of sides 22a and 22b of web 22 exactly accommodates the container walls enclosed in the slot formed thereby.
FIGS. 7, 8 and 9 illustrate another advantage of the design of the present handle. Specifically, the urgent need for low-cost manufacture demands that handle place= ment during attachment be rapidly accomplished. In contrast to handles which are secured to only one side of a bag wall and thus must be accurately located before welding, it is only necessary in the design of the present invention to place the handle over the bag edge until the edge of the container registers with the top of slot 24. This can be done consistently and accurately without resort to placement jigs or the like.
With certain types of bags it may be desirable to secure the handle to a flat portion thereof, as illustrated in the embodiment of FIGS. 11, 12 and 13. As shown in FIG. 11, the handle is molded as in the embodiments of FIGS. 1 through 9 except that the side walls 22a and 22b forming slot 24' are substantially lengthened, usually, but not necessarily, by extending the extremities of the side walls of the slot vertically, whereby the extremities are parallel and overall handle width remains unchanged. The side walls thus can be readily flexed outwardly for the secur ing operation, as shown in FIG. 12. Should it be de* sired, the handle many be flexed downward against the flat bag wall to which it is secured, as shown in FIG. 13, the flat bag wall being depicted at 50. This is advan tageous as a space saver when shipping the bags with handles already attached, particularly when empty. It should be recognized, of course, that when a bag is filled and lifted by the handle, the weight of the contents restores the side walls of slot 24' substantially toward the vertical so as to conform to the stress angle, whatever that may be in the particular case.
Two heavy-duty modifications of the handle of the present invention are presented in FIGS. 14-17 and FIGS. 18-21, respectively. Both modifications retain the unique features of the present invention in combination with esthetic design.
Referring to FIGS, 14 17, the handle, which is drawn to actual scale, comprises an elongated securing web 60 with securing slot 62 formed by parallel bifurcated side portions or skirts 60a and 60b. Convergently-directioned support webs 64 and 66 are faired into web 60 by internal stress-distributing profiles 68 and 7d, the external profiles also being curvilinear to avoid stress concentration.
p in width, and has a three-inch gusset.
Elongated hand-grip portion 72 connects the upper extremities of support webs 64 and 66, the internal and external junctures having substantial radii of curvature to avoid stress concentration. The hand-grip portion 72 features a substantially-thickened cross section 74 which extends and tapers into support webs 64 and 66 at 76 and 78, the thickness and extent of the extension being greater than in the embodiments of FIGS. 1-13. The underside or normally-downward-facing surface of the thickened hand-grip portion 72 is concavely curved upwardly as indicated at 80 in FIG. 17, the curvatu-re usually being less pronounced when the handle is subjected to carrying stresses. The underside may also, of course, be substantially flattened or even slightly convexly curved, as dictated by strength and hand comfort considerations.
Referring to FIGS. 18-21, the handle, which is drawn to half-scale in FIGS. 18-19 and actual-scale in FIGS. 20-21, comprises an elongated securing web 90 with inverted-V-shaped securing slot 92 formed by divergent bifurcated side portions or skirts 911a and 90b. Convergently-directioned support webs 94 and 96 are faired into web 90 by internal stress-distributing profiles 98 and 1%.
Elongated hand-grip portion 102 connects the upper extremities of support webs 94 and 96, the internal and external junctures having substantial curvature to provide stress distribution as in the previously-described embodiments. The hand-grip portion 102 features a substantially-thickened cross section 104 which extends to the lower extremities of the support webs while progressively tapering and widening as shown at 106 and 168, thereby covering roughly about half the web areas. The underside or normally-downward-facing surface of hand-grip portion 102 is substantially flattened for hand comfort.
Both heavy-duty embodiments of FIGS. 14-17 and FIGS. 18-21 may be modified for attachent to the fiat surfaces of a container wall instead of an edge thereof by lengthening bifurcated side portions 60a-60b and 96a- 90b, respectively, in a manner similar to that already described in connection with the embodiments of FIGS. 1-10 and illustrated in FIGS. 11-13.
EXAMPLE 1 As a specific example of the embodiment of FIGS. 1 through 9, but without limitation thereto, the handle is integrally molded from polyethylene plastic and is approximately 6 /s inches in over-all length and 2% inches in over-all height, FIGS. 2, 3 and 4 being drawn to approximate scale in the original patent drawings. The handle is heat-sealed to a 6-mil-thick polyethylene bag at the upper seam thereof, as portrayed in FIG. 1. The bag is, for example, about 21 inches in length, 10 inches The bag is fabricated from filmic polyethylene sheet stock having a thickness of about 6 mils and, for example, may be filled with 25 pounds of salt for melting ice.
Securing web 22 is approximately /8 inch in vertical width, and slot 24 is approximately 7 inch in depth.
The thickness of web 22 increases from about mils at the juncture with support webs 26 and 28 to approximately 115 mils at the location of upper extremity of slot 24. The walls 22a and 22b of slot 24 are each approximately 25 mils in thickness, although, as previously mentioned, they may be substantially thinner, at least at the lower portions thereof, inasmuch as after heatsealing of the handle to the plastic bag wall, the bag wall and walls 22a and 22b become an integral structure reinforcing one another.
Support webs 26 and 28 are angled at approximately 3040 from the vertical, e.g., 35, and are approximately 65 mils in thickness. The horizontal width thereof tapers, as shown in FIG. 2, from about 1% inches at the juncture with securing web 22 to about /2 inch at the juncture with hand-grip portion 34. The radius of curvature of the stress-distributing profile at the internal juncture of support webs 26 and 28 with securing web 22 is approximately inch.
The upper surfaces of hand-grip portion 34 are approximately round in cross section, as shown in FIG. 6 on an expanded scale, and have an actual radius of curvature of approximately inch. As previously indicated, the lower portion thereof is substantially flat for purposes of hand comfort. The result is a cross section with a maximum horizontal width of 250 mils and a maximum vertical height of 200 mils.
EXAMPLE 2 As a specific example of the embodiment of FIGS. 18-21, but without limitation thereto, the handle is integrally molded from polyethylene plastic and is'approximately 8% inches in over-all length and 2 /8 inches in over-all height. The handle may be secured to the container, e. g., a 6- to 7-mil polyethylene bag for carrying 50 pounds of pulverant material, by techniques already described in Example 1.
Securing web is approximately inch in vertical width, and inverted-V slot 92 is approximately to inch in depth. The thickness of Web 90 is about 62.5 mils at the juncture with support webs 94 and 96, and walls 90a and 9% are each approximately 25 mils. Support webs 94 and 96 are angled as shown in the drawings and are approximately 62.5 mils in thickness. The width, measured horizontally, tapers from about 2% inches at the juncture with securing web 90 to about /3 inch at the juncture with hand-grip portion 102. The radius of curvature of the stress-distributing profiles 98 and 100 is approximately inch. The internal and external radii of curvature of the junctures of support webs 94 and 96 with hand g-rip portion .102 are approximately 7 inch and 4 inch, respectively.
The upper surface of hand-grip portion 102 has a radius of curvature of approximately inch. The maximum horizontal width is approximately inch (437.5 mils) and the maximum vertical depth is approximately 225 mils. The thickened profile 104 of hand-grip portion 102 tapers gradually at extensions 106 and 108 from the maximum cross section of about inch at the top to the support-web thickness of 62.5 mils at the juncture with securing web 90.
From the above description of certain embodiments and specific examples of two such embodiments, it is apparent that the objects of the present invention have been achieved. The simply-molded, low-cost, high-strength handle is readily aflixable to fiat surfaces or end extremities of gusseted and pillow-type bags of varying wall thicknesses. The dimensions of the handle can be readily adjusted within the basic design to meet varying requirements, and the load-distributing attributes of the basic design penmit the use of filmic container walls of minimum thickness for a given load. Since two opposed surfaces of the handle are secured to the container walls, the handle can be seized from any angle without fear of delaminating or peeling it from the container or otherwise tearing the container. The intermediate portions of the securing webs 22, 60 and 90 and the thickened cross sections 34, 74 and 104 of hand-grip portions 20, 72 and 1112, respectively, form in combination a reinforced structure to vertical forces so that the handle will not fold or collapse under normal loads. The handle, whether secured to the edge or flat surfaces, is positioned or can be positioned so as to lie flat for shipping purposes.
While the present invention has been described in connection with certain embodiments, it should be understood that the invention is not limited thereto. Alternative modifications of the present invention will be apparent from the above description to those skilled in the art and such modifications are considered as within the spirit and scope of the present invention and are intended to be covered in any patent based hereon.
Having thus described the invention, what is claimed is:
1. An integrally-formed plastic carrying handle for attachment to a pliable plastic container comprising:
(A) an elongated securing web longitudinally slotted along one side thereof so as to provide internal longitudinal surfaces for attachment to said pliable plastic container;
' (B) c'onvergently-directioned support webs adjacent the extremities of said securing web and at the other longitudinal side thereof, said support webs increasing in Width from normally-upper to normally-lower portions thereof and having stress-distributing profiles at the internal junctures with said securing web;
(C) an elongated hand-grip portion between the converging extremities of said support webs and connected thereto by stress-distributing profiles, said elongated hand-grip portion,
(1) being substantially parallel to and spaced from said elongated securing web,
(2) being thickened to increase resistance to transverse flexure under stress, and
( 3) having a stress-distributing cont-our at the normally-downward-facing surface thereof;
(D) thickened portions of said hand-grip portion extending at least into said support webs so as to reinforce the same; said handle being substantially symmetrical about the principal plane thereof.
2. A manuallyportable collapsible container for flowable substances comprising:
(A) a normally-downward-depending, pliable-walled,
collapsible plastic vessel portion; and
(B) a carrying handle of compatible-type plastic secured at a normally-upward portion thereof, said handle comprising:
(1) an elongated securing web with downwarddepending, opposed, longitudinal extensions, internal surfaces of which are secured to said vessel portion,
(2) upwardly convergently directioned support webs adjacent the extremities of said securing web, said support webs having stress-distributing profiles at the internal junctures with said securing Web,
(3) an elongated hand-grip portion between the upward extremities of said support webs and connected thereto with stress-distributing profiles, said elongated hand-grip portion,
(a) being substantially parallel to and spaced from said elongated securing Web,
(b) being thickened to resist transverse flexure, and
(c) being contoured for hand comfort at the principal hand-contacting surfaces,
(4) thickened portions of said hand grip-portion extending into at least said support webs so as reinforce the same;
said handle being substantially symmetrical about the principal plane thereof.
3. A manually-portable container for particulated solids comprising:
(A) a normally-downward-depending, pliable-walled polyethylene bag portion; and
(B) a polyethylene plastic carrying handle integrally and centrally secured to said bag portion at a normally upward portion thereof, said handle comprising:
(1) an elongated securing web longitudinally slotted along the normally lower side thereof with portions of said polyethylene bag portion integrally secured to internal surfaces of the slot,
(2) upwardly convergently directioned support webs adjacent the extremities of said securing web, said support webs increasing in width from the normally-upper to the normally-lower portions thereof and having stress-distributing profiles at the junctures with said securing web,
(3) an elongated hand-grip portion between the upward extremities of said support webs :and connected thereto with stress-distributing profiles, said elongated hand-grip portion,
(a) being substantially parallel to and spaced from said elongated securing web,
(b) being thickened to resist transverse flexure, and
(c) being contoured for hand comfort at the principal hand-contacting surfaces,
(4) thickened portions of said hand-grip portion extending into at least said support Webs so 'as to reinforce the same;
said handle being substantially symmetrical about the principal plane thereof.
References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,733,219 10/1929 Duvall 22952 X 2,823,155 2/1958 Brown et a1. -12 X 3,010,552 11/1961 Davidson 57 X 3,128,035 4/ 1964 Temeles 22954 FOREIGN PATENTS 1,296,741 5/1962 France.
1,358,312 3/1964 France.
1,115,418 9/1960 Germany.
GEORGE O. RALSTON, Primary Examiner. JOSEPH R. LECLAIR, Examiner.
D. T. MOORI-IEAD, Assistaint Examiner.