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Publication numberUS3325000 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJun 13, 1967
Filing dateSep 28, 1964
Priority dateSep 28, 1964
Publication numberUS 3325000 A, US 3325000A, US-A-3325000, US3325000 A, US3325000A
InventorsEdwards Bryant
Original AssigneeIllinois Tool Works
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Package for dispensing articles
US 3325000 A
Images(3)
Previous page
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

June 13, 1967 B. EDWARDS 3,325,000

PACKAGE FOR DISPENSING ARTICLES Filed Sept. 28, 19 64 3 Sheets-Sheet 1 His Aft)- June 13, 1967 B EDWARDS 3,325,000

PACKAGE FOR DISPENSING ARTICLES Filed Sept. 28, 1964 3 Sheets-Sheet 2 INVENT Bryant E dwa His Affj June 13, 1967 B. EDWARDS 3,325,000

PACKAGE FOR DISPENSING ARTICLES Filed Sept. 28, 1964 3 Sheets-Sheet .2;

, INVENTOR Bryant Edwards BY W7%K His A/fj United tates Patent fiice 3,325,990 Patented June 13, 1967 Delaware Fiied Sept. 28, 1964. Ser. N 9,762 2 Ciairns. (Q1. 206-56) The present invention relates to a novel and unique package for articles of manufacture such as cigars and the like, and more particularly, to a package for retaining and selectively dispensing individual articles of manufacture without exposing any articles remaining in the package.

The packaging of cigars has heretofore been accomplished by placing individual cigars, usually covered with a transparent overwrap, in a paperboard box or carton which may also be wrapped with a transparent covering. The removal of the cigars from these boxes or cartons exposes them to the outside atmosphere, and thus it has een necessary to individually wrap the cigars to prevent them from becoming stale. This has in turn brought about tear-strip features for the individual cigar wraps to facilitate removal of the cigars therefrom. As a result, cigar packaging has been quite expensive due to the necessity of providing individual wraps for the cigars as well as boxes or cartons in which a plurality of cigars are placed.

Removal of the first cigar from a box or carton is not accomplished with facility since they are closely packed together for economy, and to prevent shifting and a consequent harm to each other. When one or more cigars have been removed from the box or carton, the likelihood of injury due to shifting cigars becomes more acute, and it also becomes difficult to grasp the cigars. In some instances, spacer elements have been provided, but this will increase the cost of the package as will be obvious, and it does not facilitate removal.

Accordingly, it is an object of the present invention to provide a novel and unique package which overcomes the above noted deficiencies.

More specifically, it is an object of the present invention to provide a novel and unique package for articles of manufacture such as cigars and the like wherein the articles can be removed one at a time without exposure of the remaining articles within the package.

A further object of the present invention is the provision of a novel and unique package which protects articles of manufacture from exposure to the outside atmosphere whether or not they have overwraps or coverings.

Still another object of the present invention is the provision of a novel and unique package which facilitates the removal of articles contained therewithin.

A still further object of the present invention is to provide a novel and unique package which will facilitate the packaging of one or a plurality of articles without great expense.

Yet another object of the present invention is the provision of a novel and unique package which is aesthetically pleasing in appearance and displays the articles to consumers, while also protecting the articles from injury.

Still another object of the present invention is the provision of a novel and unique package which, in at least one form of the invention, is capable of being reduced in size with the removal of individual articles.

Other objects and advantages will become apparent from the following description when taken in connection with the accompanying drawings wherein:

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of one form of novel package, with articles contained therein, which is constructed in accordance with the teachings of the present invention;

FIG. 2 is an exploded perspective view showing the components of the package illustrated in FIG. 1;

FIG. 3 is a sectional view of the package shown in FIG. 1 without any articles or products received therein;

FIG. 4 is a perspective view of another form of package coming within the purview of the present invention;

FIG. 5 is a perspective view of a modified receptacle which may be used in forming the package of the present invention;

FIG. 6 is a sectional view of the modified receptacle shown in FIG. 5;

FIG. 7 is a fragmentary bottom plan view of the form of package shown in FIGS. 1-3;

FIG. 8 is a perspective view of yet still another form of package constructed in accordance with the principles of the present invention;

FIG. 9 is a perspective view of another modified receptacle which may be used in forming packages coming within the scope of the present invention;

FIG. 10 is a perspective view of yet still another form of package coming within the teachings of the present invention;

FIG. 11 is a partially exploded perspective view of yet still another form of package within the scope of the present invention;

FIG. 12 is a perspective view of a slightly modified form of package which comes within the scope of the present invention;

FIG. 13 is a sectional view of the package shown in FIG. 12 and taken along lines 13-13 thereof, but without showing any of the articles or products within the package;

FIG. 14 is an elevational view of the package shown in FIG. 12 with one of the receptacles being separated from the remainder of the package;

FIG. 15 is a fragmentary perspective view of one of the individual receptacles shown in FIGS. 12l5;

FIG. 16 is a sectional view of a modified form of package similar to FIGS. 12-14, and showing the articles or products contained therein;

FIG. 17 is a fragmentary perspective view of an individual receptacle which may be used with the embodiments shown in FIGS. 12-14 and 16;

FIG. 18 is a fragmentary sectional view showing the manner in which a pair of FIG. 17 receptacles engage one another;

FIG. 19 is a fragmentary perspective view of yet still another modified form of receptacle which may be used with the form of invention shown in FIGS. 1214 and 16;

FIG. 20 is a fragmentary sectional view illustrating the manner in which a pair of FIG. 19 receptacles engage one another;

FIG. 21 is a fragmentary perspective view of yet still another form of receptacle which may be used with the embodiments shown in FIGS. 1214 and 16; and

FIG. 22 is a fragmentary sectional view showing the manner in which a pair of FIG. 21 receptacles engage one another.

Referring now to the drawings, and first to FIGS. 1-3 and 7, there is shown a package 10 for retaining and dispensing articles of manufacture such as the cigars 20. It is to be understood that the term articles of manufacture is not limited to cigars, but includes any artificial or naturally made products.

The package shown in FIGS. 1-3 and 7 comprises a supporting tray or container body 30, preferably made of thermoplastic material such as polypropylene, polystyrene, polyethylene, etc., and is provided with a plurality of adjacently positioned and interconnected receptacles 32 to which a cover element or sheet is secured. Each of the receptacles 32 of the supporting tray is provided with a bottom wall 34 and a peripherally continuous sidewall 36 extending upwardly therefrom which terminates in an open upper end 38 at the top of each receptacle. A rigidifying flange 40 surrounds each receptacle adjacent the open upper end thereof and extends substantially normal to the sidewall 36. Adjacent pairs of receptacles 32 are interconnected to each other by way of the rigidifying flanges 40 which extend therebetween to provide a unitary supporting tray.

It is to be noted that the receptacles shown in the various figures of the present invention are substantially elongated in shape, but it is to be understood that other shapes and configurations may be used if desired. In the rigidifying flanges at one end of each elongated receptacle, there is provided a notch 42 which is used to facilitate removal of the cover sheet from the various receptacles as will become apparent hereinafter.

The supporting tray 30 can be formed with one or more receptacles, and in the cigar packaging field, will normally consist of five interconnected receptacles. When the supporting tray has been formed by suitable molding apparatus, the cigars may be readily placed within the receptacles and thereafter covered by the cover sheet or element 60. This cover sheet or element may be made of a thin plastic film which is capable of being heat sealed to the rigidifying flanges of the receptacles, but preferably it comprises a relatively rigid backing member made of plastic, cardboard and the like which is coated with an adhesive in order to impart rigidity to the package as a whole. Where a substantially inflexible backing member is used, the receptacles will be restrained from deflecting toward each other, and thus decrease the likelihood of injury to the products contained therein.

As will be seen from an inspection of FIG. 2 in the drawings, the cover sheet or element 60 is provided with a plurality of weakened areas 62 in the form of parallel rows of perforations, and are so located as to be in alignment with the rigidifying flanges between adjacently positioned receptacles. If desired, the rigidifying flanges may also be provided with weakened areas. Once the cigars or other articles of manufacture have been placed within the receptacles, the cover sheet or element 60 may be secured to the supporting tray in the manner described above so as to provide the package shown in FIGS. 1-3 and 7 of the drawings. When the cover sheet is in position on the supporting tray, marginal edge portions of these sheets, which are here designated as 64, will overlie the notches 42 formed in the rigidifying flanges of the supporting tray as illustrated in FIGS. 1 and 7 of the drawings. In effecting removal of cigars or other products from the receptacles, it is a relatively simple matter for the user to grasp a marginal edge portion 64 of the cover sheet and tear or separate a cover sheet portion 66 which overlies a specific receptacle without exposing the contents of the remaining receptacles. This is depicted in FIG. 7 of the drawings wherein a portion 66 of the cover sheet overlying the receptacle at the right of the package is shown as being partially removed therefrom. The remainder of the cover sheet will remain adhered and secured to the rigidifying flanges of the supporting tray to prevent exposure to the outside atmosphere. Notches 42 in the supporting tray aid the user in grasping cover sheet portions 66 since they are of a size and shape to facilitate the entry of a users fingers therewithin, and are centrally located at one end of each receptacle to assure accurate removal of individual cover sheet portions.

The type of package just described is designed to eliminate the necessity of using cellophane or other transparent overwraps for the cigars since the cover sheets will effectively seal the contents of each receptacle from exposure. It may nevertheless be desired to individually wrap the products, and such is within the contemplation of the present invention. In its preferred form, the package 10, including both the supporting tray and cover sheet, are made of transparent material for displaying the products contained therein, but in certain instances, such as where it may be desirable to impart rigidity to the pack- 4 age, the cover sheet may be made of a nontransparent reinforcing material. In any case, it is desirable that the cover sheet accommodate advertising literature thereon for identifying the products to consumers.

Since the cigars or other products are received within separate compartments of the package, the possibility of harm due to shifting of the products is substantially eliminated. In this regard, it is specifically to be noted that the receptacles are preferably conformed generally to the shape of the products so as to maintain them in a sub stantially fixed position while contained within the receptacles.

The embodiment shown in FIG. 4 of the drawings and designated 10a is similar to the embodiment just described as indicated by the application of identical reference numerals with the suflix a employed to designate like parts. In this embodiment, generally opposed margins of the supporting tray 30a at each end of the elongated receptacles are provided with a pair of reversely bent flanges 44 which are adapted to slidingly receive the cover sheet 69a. The flanges preferably hold the cover sheet 60a in engagement with the rigidifying flanges of the receptacles so as to substantiallyseal off the contents thereof from the surrounding atmosphere. In removing cigars or other products from the receptacles, it is merely necessary to slide the cover sheet away from the open upper end of one or more receptacles depending upon the number of products desired to be removed so as to enable the user to grasp the products. It will be apparent that this form of invention will also prevent exposure to products not desired to be removed as well as provide a substantially rigid package.

Another modified form of the invention is shown in FIGS. 5-6 and is similar to the above described embodiments as indicated by the application of identical reference numerals with the suflix b employed to designate like parts. The supporting tray 30]) shown in these figures is substantially rectangular in shape as are the receptacles 3212, although other shapes are possible. The essential difference of this modification over the previous embodiments resides in the peripherally continuous skirt means 46 which is integrally connected to and extends downwardly from the marginal portions of the rigidifying flanges 40b surrounding the receptacles. Such a construction will reinforce and strengthen the package so as to prevent collapse of the receptacles. It is also to be noted that the bottom wall, sidewalls and rigidifying flanges of each receptacle are joined to respective portions thereof at right angles so as to further strengthen the supporting tray. It is preferable, though not necessary, tha tthe peripherally continuous or depending skirt means 46 extends beneath the bottom walls 341) of the receptacle as shown in FIG. 6 of the drawings in order to space the bottom walls of the receptacles upwardly from a complementary supporting surface for protecting the products contained within the receptacles.

The form of package shown in FIG. 8 is generally similar to the other embodiments as indicated by the application of identical reference numerals with the sutfix c employed to designate like parts. Only a portion of the cover element 600 is shown in this embodiment, it being understood that the cover element will overlie and cover all of the receptacles of the package. The form of the invention shown here is similar to FIGS. 5-6 in that the package and receptacles are substantially rectangular in form, but as will be apparent, one end of each receptacle is interrupted for the entire height of the receptacle sidewall for purposes to be presently described. In all of the forms of the invention previously described, the removal of the cover element from a specific receptacle still necessitates grasping of the cigar in order to remove it from the open receptacle. In this form of the invention, however, the cigars 200 may readily slide from the receptacles upon the separation of a cover element portion 66c from its corresponding receptacle. In order to prevent shifting movement of the cigars or other products while contained within the receptacles, connecting webs 48 are provided. These connecting webs 48 are provided with an outwardly facing curvilinear surface substantially conforming to the shape of the cigars, and are spaced upwardly from the bottom walls of each receptacle by an amount sufficient to prevent longitudinally shifting movement of the cigars while retained within the receptacles of the package. It is to be noted that the cover element title in this form of the invention must, of necessity, extend over the open end of the receptacles for covering and sealing the contents thereof. Tab means may be provided, if desired, for removing cover element portions 660 from the receptacles.

The modified form of supporting tray 30d shown in FIG. 9 is generally similar to the other embodiments, and substantially the same as the FIG. 8 embodiment, as indicated by the application of identical reference numerals with the suffix d employed to designate like parts. Instead of employing the connecting means 48 as in the FIG. 8 embodiment, the sidewall adjacent at least one end of the receptacles as at 50 may be shortened in height as compared with the remainder of the sidewall to prevent shifting of the cigars or other articles while the cover element is in place on the receptacles, but still provide dispensing, without grasping, of the articles upon the removal of cover element portion as in the FIG. 8 embodiment.

The embodiments shown in FIGS. 10 and 11 are generally similar to the other embodiments as indicated by the application of identical reference numerals with the suffixes e and f respectively used to designate like parts. In FIG. 10, an open mouth container 52 of substantially rigid construction and having a configuration generally complementary to the supporting tray a is provided for receiving the same therewithin so as to reinforce and strengthen the package. The supporting tray 3012, as is the case with the supporting tray 30a in the FIG. 4 em bodiment, may be provided, if desired, with a cover element of the type previously described as an extra precaution in protecting the contents of the receptacles.

The rigid open mouth containers 54 shown in the FIG. 11 embodiment are used with a package which is identical to the FIGS. 1-3 and 7 embodiment. In this case, the open mouth containers 54 are complementary in configuration to generally opposed marginal areas of the package as will be apparent so as to reinforce and strengthen the same.

The forms of the invention just described generally comprise a supporting tray having a plurality of integrally attached receptacles for receiving cigars or other products. It is also within the purview of the present invention to provide a series of individual stacked trays which are adjacently positioned and interconnected to one another as will become apparent from the following discussion of the FIGS. 12-22 modifications.

One form of stacked tray arrangement is shown in FIGS. 12-14 and is identified by 10g. This package has a plurality of trays 70 each having a bottom wall 74 and a side wall 76 which extends upwardly therefrom and terminates in open upper end 78 as best seen in FIGS. 13 and 15. Part of the sidewall is reduced as at 80 to provide an externally projecting shoulder 82 which is in alignment with the remainder of the sidewall. Sidewall portion 80 is laterally offset inwardly from the remainder of the sidewall by an amount sufiicient to cause frictional engagement with an upper sidewall portion of an adjacently positioned container, as is best seen in FIG. 13, while at the same time maintaining the sidewalls of the receptacles in substantial alignment with each other. Thus, each pair of adjacently positioned receptacles in the package 10g are releaseably secured to one another and effectively prevent the entrance of air into the lowermost receptacle of each pair. This enables the reduced sidewall portion 80 and the bottom wall 74 of the uppermost receptacle in each pair of adjacently positioned receptacles to serve as a seal and cover for the contents of the lowermost receptacle. Preferably, the receptacles frictionally engage one another in such a manner as to provide a seal and cover for the contents of the receptacles Without making it difficult to separate them from each other by hand as is indicated in FIG. 14.

The bottom wall in each of the receptacles of a package, except for the lowermost receptacle, will serve as a cover element for an associated receptacle. In the case of the uppermost receptacle, a closure member 82 is employed and is provided with a depending flange 84 which is adapted to be nestably received within the open upper end 78 of the uppermost receptacle. Removal of the cigars or other products from the receptacles in the stacked tray package is preferably accomplished by first removing the lowermost receptacle, and since the bottom wall of the next adjacent receptacle is used as a cover element for the lowermost receptacle, the remainder of the cigars contained in the other receptacles will not be exposed to the outside atmosphere. Thereafter, the next adjacent receptacle will be removed from the package and so on until all of the products have been consumed. It is also possible to remove the cigars from the package by first removing the closure member and then removing subsequent receptacles, but this will leave the upper sidewall portion of the tnays or receptacles unprotected, and this is undesirable from the consumers viewpoint. In either case, whether the removal of the cigars is begun at the top or bottom of the package, it will be apparent that the size of the package will be diminished thus indicating to the consumer the number of unused or unconsumed products.

The form of stacked tray package shown in FIG. 16 and identified 19a is generally similar to the FIGS. 12-15 embodiment as indicated by the application of identical reference numerals with the sufiix h employed to designate like parts. This form of the invention departs from what is shown in FIGS. 12-15 by using a slightly modified form of tray 70h for the uppermost receptacle and a transparent overwrap 90 for encompassing the entire package as well as for covering and sealing the uppermost receptacle. Receptacle 70h is not provided with an upper sidewall portion above the externally projection shoulder 82h, but the reduced sidewall portion 80h thereof cooperates with the upper sidewall portion of the next lowermost tray or receptacle in the same manner as previously described. In removing the products from this particular package, the transparent overwrap is removed, thus exposing the cigar positioned in the uppermost receptacle. Thereafter, the remainder of the cigars may be dispensed by removing the lowermost receptacle in the package and so on as was previously described in connection with the FIGS. 12-15 embodiments.

FIGS. 17-18, 19-20 and 21-22 show modified forms of the trays or receptacles used in the FIGS. 12-16 embodiments, and like parts will be designated by the same numerals with sufiixes i, j and k used respectively to designate like parts. The tray shown in FIGS. 17-18 differs in that the externally projecting shoulder 821' is more pronounced, and thus frictionally engages a smaller area of the upper sidewall portion 761' in an adjacently positioned receptacle.

In FIGS. 19-20, the receptacle 7flj, in addition to having a reduced sidewall portion and an externally projecting shoulder 80j, 82 respectively as in the FIGS. 12-16 embodiments, is also provided with an internally projecting shoulder 84 in the upper sidewall area of the receptacle. Internally projecting shoulder 84 will also serve in this embodiment as a means to frictionally engage the reduced sidewall portion in an adjacently positioned receptacle so as to releaseably secure them to each other. FIGS. 21-22 show an inwardly facing lug or shoulder 86 provided in the upper sidewall portion 76k which cooperates with an outwardly facing slot means 88 formed in the reduced sidewall area 80k so as to releaseably secure the trays or receptacles 70k to each other. Obviously, it is also possible to provide an outwardly facing lug or shoulder which cooperates with an inwardly facing slot means if desired.

From the foregoing, it will now be appreciated that the present invention contemplates various novel forms of article dispensing packages which can be economically and efficiently produced at rapid speeds under present manufacturing techniques, while at the same time effectively retaining and protecting the articles positioned within the package as well as facilitating removal-of individual products therefrom without exposing any products remaining in the package. It will also be appreciated that the package will effectively display the articles therein, and is aesthetically pleasing in appearance.

Although specific embodiments have been shown and described herein, it is with full awareness that many modifications thereof are possible. The invention, therefore, is not to be restricted except insofar as is necessitated by the prior art and by the spirit of the appended claims.

I claim:

1. A package for dispensing articles of manufacture comprising a one-piece container body made from thin thermoplastic material and including a plurality of adjacently positioned discrete receptacles of elongated shape each being provided with a bottom wall and a side wall extending upwardly therefrom and terminating in an open upper end, said container body having a rigiditying flange integrally attached to the open upper end of each receptacle in surrounding relationship thereto and extending substantially normal to the receptacle side Wall, the rigidifying flanges of adjacent receptacles being integrally joined to one another whereby to provide a unitary container body, a thermoplastic cover element releaseably secured to said rigidifying flanges in a manner to overlie the open upper end of each receptacle and seal the contents thereof from the outside atmosphere, means providing selective removal of the cover element from each receptacle without exposing the remaining receptacles, each receptacle side wall being provided with a portion transverse to the longitudinal axis thereof and of smaller height than the remainder of said side wall to prevent shifting of said articles of manufacture while said cover element is in place on said receptacles, but facilitating slding removal of said articles upon the separation of said cover element therefrom and tilting of said receptacles from a horizontal position.

2. A package for dispensing articles of manufacture comprising a one-piece container body made from thin thermoplastic material and including a plurality of adjacently positioned discrete receptacles of elongated shape each being provided with a bottom wall and a side wall extending upwardly therefrom and terminating in an open upper end, said container body having a rigidifying flange integrally attached to the open upper end of each receptacle in surrounding relationship thereto and extending substantially normal to the receptacle side wall, the rigidifying flanges of adjacent receptacles being integrally oined to one another whereby to provide a unitary container body, a thermoplastic cover element releaseably secured to said rigidifying flanges in a manner to overlie the open upper end of each receptacle and seal the contents thereof from the outside atmosphere, means providing selective removal of the cover element from each receptacle without exposing the remaining receptacles, each receptacle side wall being provided with an opening transverse to the longitudinal axis of and extending from the bottom wall to the open upper end thereof, and web means of predetermined height spanning each opening to prevent shifting of said articles of manufacture when said cover element is secured to said receptacles, but permitting sliding dispensing removal of said articles of manufacture through said openings upon the separation of said cover element from said receptacles.

References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 820,773 5/1906 Fleming 229 -9 1,745,929 2/ 1930 Grimmeisen. 2,091,603 8/1937 Lernire 206-412 2,138,241 11/1938 Koch et a1. 3,329,866 9/1943 Van Sickels. 3,013,656 12/1961 Murphy 206-72 3,121,492 2/1964 De Paul et al. 206-- 3,133,635 5/1964 Gordon et al. 20617.5 3,207,302 9/1965 Hobbs 206-63.2

FOREIGN PATENTS 599,808 10/ 1925 France. 1,152,024 8/ 1957 France.

655,998 8/ 1951 Great Britain.

565,715 8/1957 Italy.

THERON E. CONDON, Primary Examiner.

W. T. DIXSON, IR., Assistant Examiner.

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Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3375920 *Jul 1, 1966Apr 2, 1968Herman L. ShawFilter material
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US5048684 *Feb 1, 1990Sep 17, 1991Becton, Dickinson And CompanyCompact syringe and catheter package
US5749461 *May 7, 1997May 12, 1998Guzman; EriAirtight cigar package
US5882173 *Sep 29, 1997Mar 16, 1999Ziegler; Charles B.Golf ball stacking and dispensing apparatus and method
US6116420 *Nov 22, 1996Sep 12, 2000Hall; Glenn RaymondToothpick dispenser for removing toothpicks individually
US7537110 *Jun 2, 2005May 26, 2009Philip Morris Usa Inc.Container for consumer article
US7584843May 1, 2006Sep 8, 2009Philip Morris Usa Inc.Pocket-size hand-held container for consumer items
US7648024May 27, 2008Jan 19, 2010Phillip Morris Usa Inc.Pocket-sized, hand-held container for consumer items having a receptacle for used product, sealed tray, and thumb ridge on lid
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Classifications
U.S. Classification206/256, 229/125.12, 229/120.32, 229/120.3, 206/564, 206/464, 206/518, 206/820, 206/264, 206/267
International ClassificationB65D1/36, B65D85/12, B65D43/12, B65D75/34
Cooperative ClassificationY10S206/82, B65D1/36, B65D75/367, B65D75/327, B65D2575/3245, B65D85/12, B65D43/12
European ClassificationB65D85/12, B65D75/36H, B65D1/36, B65D75/32D3, B65D43/12