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Publication numberUS3325048 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJun 13, 1967
Filing dateFeb 21, 1964
Priority dateFeb 21, 1964
Also published asDE1486427A1
Publication numberUS 3325048 A, US 3325048A, US-A-3325048, US3325048 A, US3325048A
InventorsBryant Edwards
Original AssigneeIllinois Tool Works
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Container
US 3325048 A
Abstract  available in
Images(1)
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

B. EDWARDS June 13, 1967 CONTAINER Filed Febv 21 1964 INVENTOR. Bryant E (1%; BY My His Afl'y United States Patent 3,325,04s CONTAINER Bryant Edwards, Clarendon Hills, ilk, assignor to Illinois Tool Works Inc Chicago, llll., a corporation of Delaware Filed Feb. 21, 1964, Ser. No. 346,477 7 Claims. c1. 220-97 The present invention relates to disposable containers molded in one piece from thin drawn web stock which are especially suitable for, though not limited to, the carrying of food products.

The recent trend in the field of disposable or throw away container products is the use of thin Walled plastic containers which have distinct advantages over paper containers or paper containers impregnated or coated with plastic, while at the same time being competitive with such paper products. Thin walled plastic containers provide a consumer with a liquid-tight container which does not become soggy after use, does not have a distinct taste of its own, and prevents condensation of moisture on a supporting surface.

In addition, such thin walled plastic containers are readily adaptable for use with automatic dispensing equipment if constructed in a manner to take full advantage thereof. Normally, containers are designed to drop one at a time from dispensing equipment, and this means that containers must not stick to each other or clog the dispensing equipment. Containers stick to each other by being wedged against adjacent containers, and this is caused either by the engagement or contact of container surfaces, or air pressure formed in pockets therebetween. Containers must be designed to avoid this while at the same time facilitating yielding of individual containers within a stack so as to provide a resilient stack of containers which enhances the step by step dropping of containers without harming the dispensing equipment. The resiliency of a container stack also reduces the tendency of bursting of a carton carrying the containers when dropped or banged against a surface.

If these desirable characteristics are incorporated into a container in a manner which will result in a container which is also aesthetically pleasing in appearance, it will aid in stimulating sales to the consuming public.

Accordingly, it is an object of the present invention to provide a novel designed container which is aesthetically pleasing in appearance and which enhances the packing, storage, dispensing and usage by the consuming public of the containers.

Another object of the present invention is to provide a one-piece thin walled plastic container of novel configuration which will permit a plurality of containers to be nestably assembled together for shipping and dispensing of the containers, and prevent container wedging upon removal of individual containers from the container stack.

A still further object of the present invention is to provide a container of integral thin walled plastic construction which is configured in a manner to take advantage of the inherent resiliency of the plastic material of which the container is made, and provide a resilient stack of cups to facilitate shipping and dispensing thereof.

Since containers of the aforementioned type are also designed to be used by the buying public in large numbers, it is also desirable that the containers have suflicient rigidity while affording convenient gripping portions having a low thermo-conductive capacity.

It is, therefore, another object of the present invention to provide a strong and structurally rigid container which resists deformation of the container when filled with a food product or while used in a shipping or dispensing stack.

Patented June 13, 1967 ice Still a further object of the present invention is to provide a container having a convenient gripping portion which also aids to thermally insulate the user from the container contents.

Other and further objects and advantages of the present invention will be apparent from the following description when taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings wherein:

FIG. 1 is a perspective View of a container constructed in accordance with the principles of the present invention;

FIG. 2 is a side elevational view of the container shown in FIG. 1, partially in section, and showing the actual size of the various integral components;

FIG. 3 is a longitudinal sectional view through a stack of containers of the type shown in FIG. 1;

FIG. 3A is still another longitudinal sectional view at the bottom of a stack of containers having a construction shown in FIG. 1; and

FIG. 4 is a bottom plan view of the container, and particularly showing the construction of the container pedestal.

Referring now to the drawings wherein like numerals are used throughout the various figures to designate the same parts, there is shown in FIGS. 1-4 a container 10 made of plastic, preferably of the high impact polystyrene variety. The container may be formed or molded by any of the present day molding techniques such as injection molding or a type of pressure molding which encompasses both blow molding or vacuum molding without any mechanical engagement with a web of thermoplastic material, and a combination of pressure differentials along with a mechanical drawing of the sheet material.

While containers of the present invention may be formed by any of the above techniques, I have found that more uniform results for a thin walled plastic container are obtained by mechanically drawing a heated thermoplastic material with a mandrel to cause a deformation of the Web while clampingly engaging the drawn material around the periphery of a chilled mold member, introducing a fluid pressure differential to the drawn web to cause it to separate from the mandrel and quickly engage the cooled mold cavity, and then severing the container from the web. Such a process is specifically illustrated and described in US. Patent 2,962,758 dated Dec. 6, 1960, to Charles J. Politis.

The container 10 molded or formed in the manner described above generally comprises a container body portion 12 and a pedestal or depending skirt portion 22 which underlies the container body portion and supports it in an upright plane. Side walls 14 of the container body portion 12 taper upwardly and outwardly to a substantially open mouth at the free ends of the side walls, the open mouth defining an opening which is substantially larger than the peripheral dimensions of the pedestal 22 and the major portion of the container body 12. A strengthening and stacking ring or shoulder 16 is formed in the tapering side walls at the lower end thereof and projects radially inwardly from the remainder of the side walls positioned above such means. This strengthening and stacking ring is adapted to receive the outer free extremity of the pedestal or depending skirt portion 22 as illustrated in FIGS. 33A.

To permit the outer free extremity 26 of a container pedestal to test against and abut the strengthening and stacking ring of an adjacent container, it is necessary that the peripheral dimension of outer free extremity 26 be smaller than the largest internal peripheral dimension of the strengthening and stacking ring, but larger than the smallest internal peripheral dimension of the ring or shoulder 16. In this manner, the pedestal of one container is adapted to be inserted within an adjacent container 3 until the outer free extremity 26 of the pedestal comes into contact with the ring or shoulder 16 of the adjacent container, at which time the containers are nestably received within one another.

The pedestal 22 may have an outer wall section 27 which is overlapped and folded back upon an inner wall section 24 in the manner disclosed by my prior U.S. Patent 3,059,810, dated Oct. 23, 1963. Folding back the outer wall section 27 in the manner just described provides a bottom wall 28 for the container which is integrally joined to the walls 24, 27 in the vicinity of the marginal periphery of the bottom wall as indicated by numeral 29. The bottom wall 28 is thus integrally attached to the pedestal 22 and supported thereby so as to provide the requisite underlying supporting strength for the contalner when filled.

As a result of this construction, the pedestal 22 has a double wall thickness, and this is important since it will aid in supporting the entire receptacle when filled as well as having several other important functions as will readily appear hereinafter. However, the double thickness pedestal portion will not prevent the pedestal from being resilient so as to provide axial breathing of individual containers within a stack of containers. As has been alluded to previously, the stack of containers for shipping or dispensing purposes creates a substantially rigid column of containers, and this may hinder the step by step removal of individual containers from a stack as well as increasing the likelihood that the rigid container column will burst the carton carrying the containers when dropped. To overcome this problem, the pedestal of the present container has been designed to takeradvanta'ge of the resilient plastic material from which the container is made.

An inspection of FIGS. 3-3A will reveal that the pedestal of each container is adapted to deflect about a point which is in the vicinity of the intersection of the pedestal rear edge and the axially extending surface 20. And, since the peripheral dimension of the pedestal outer free extremity 26 is smaller than the largest internal peripheral dimension of the strengthening and stacking shoulder or ring 16, axial breathing or movement of individual containers will occur when the weight from the container stack is impressed thereon to thereby provide a resilient stack.

While being resilient, the pedestal 22 is also substantially rigid in character due to its double thickness, and the strength derived from angularly offset surfaces so as to resist radial deformation. Inner and outer wall sections 24, 27 are supported by axially extending surface 20, and they in turn will support upstanding rim 25 for resisting radial compression or expansion forces.

In addition to the pedestal structure, the lower portion of the container has strengthening and rigidifying means formed therein. As best seen in FIG. 4, a continuously curving surface 18 extends upwardly and outwardly from the axially extending surface 20 of the container body and intersects the ring or shoulder 16. It will be evident that the area of the container extending between and including the strengthening and stacking means 16 and the outer free extremity of the pedestal will aid in rigidifying the bottom portion of the container.

As a further feature of the present invention, it will be observed that the area between the ring or shoulder 16 and the outer free extremity 26 of the pedestal 22 forms a convenient place for manually gripping the container. The pedestal of each container is located beneath the contents thereof and is preferably provided with the above described double thickness wall portion so as to aid in thermally insulating the user from the container contents.

A lid seat 30 and a rounded and thickened portion 32 may be formed adjacent the terminal ends of the container side walls to strengthen the container open mouth, the former also providing means to receive a lid for atmospherically closing the container contents by a lid 4 member or the like. The rounded and thickened portion may be a rolled lip formed by the method and apparatus disclosed in my prior US. Patent 3,096,546, dated July 9, 1963.

It will be observed that the peripheral dimension of the bottom wall 28, and the-outer free extremity 26 of the pedestal 22 are substantially smaller than the open mouth of the container so as to provide for the stacking of a plurality of containers, and yet the container will stand unsupported in an upright position. Even if the container has a greatly elongated shape so that the axial length of the container is more than twice the dimension of the open mouth, and more than five times the stacking height of the pedestal, it has been found that the container will stand upright. As an example, a 5 ounce container having a 2 /2 inch dimension for the internal peripheral wall of the open mouth, and a 1 inch stacking height (the distance between the stacking and strengthening shoulder or ring 16 and the outer free extremity 26 of the pedestal), may have an axial length of 5% inches.

It will now be apparent that the thin walled plastic container of the present invention facilitates the stacking of a plurality of containers for shipping or automatic dispensing purposes while enabling the ultimate user to readily handle and support the container without harm either to himself or to the container.

It is to be understood that the specific example of the invention herein shown and described is for illustrative purposes only. Various changes in structure will no doubt occur to those skilled in the art, and will be understood as forming a part of this invention insofar as they fall within the spirit and scope of the appended claims.

I claim:

1. A nestable thin wall plastic container of integral construction comprising a bottom wall and a side wall of substantially uniform thickness tapering upwardly and outwardly therefrom to an open mouth at the terminal end of the side wall, a resilient depending skirt portion of double wall thickness integrally joined to said bottom wall in the vicinity of the marginal periphery thereof and extending downwardly and outwardly therefrom to an outer free extremity of limited radial extent which is substantially normal to the container axis, and stacking and lateral rigidifying means formed in the side wall of said container spaced upwardly from said bottom wall and also being substantially normal to the container axis, the maximum diameter of the outer free extremity of said depending skirt portion being less than the largest internal dimension of the container side wall immediately adjacent and above the stacking means, but slightly greater than the smallest internal dimension of the stacking means to permit nesting of a plurality of similarly configured containers with the outer free extremity of said depending skirt portion in each container above the bottom container in the nested stack resting upon the stacking means of a subjacent container and spaced from the side wall of each said subjacent container immediately above its stacking means, the depending skirt portion of each container in said nested stack of containers capable of being radially expanded at its outer free extremity while deflecting in the vicinity of its juncture with an associated bottom wall when a weight is impressed on the container stack to provide axial yielding movement between the containers in said nested stack, and the relative positionment of each depending skirt portion to its associated container providing a substantial container base for resisting toppling when resting on a supporting surface.

2. The container as defined in claim 1 and having an axial height equal to at least twice the diameter of the open mouth.

3. The container as defined in claim 1 wherein the stacking means comprises a circumferentially extending, internal stacking shoulder presenting an upwardly facing stacking surface.

inner wall of the skirt portion is configured to resist deformation thereof.

7. A nestable thin Walled plastic container of integral construction comprising a bottom wall and side walls tapering upwardly and outwardly therefrom to an open mouth at the terminal ends of said side walls, a circumferentially continuous depending skirt portion integrally joined to said bottom wall in the vicinity of the marginal periphery thereof and extending downwardly and outwardly to a generally radially directed outer free extremity of limited radial extent and generally radially directed stacking means formed in said side walls spaced upwardly from and adjacent said bottom wall, said stacking means being offset radially inwardly from thase portions of the side walls above said stacking means and being dimendepending skirt portion to permit the depending skirt portion of a similarly configured container to rest upon the stacking means in spaced relation to the bottom wall of the container without contact with the side walls of individual containers, said depending skirt portion providing axial resilient movement of individual containers within a stack of containers when a weight is impressed thereon, and the relative positionment of each depending skirt portion to its associated container providing a substantial base for resisting toppling when resting on a supporting surface.

References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 3,094,240 6/1963 Wanderer.

FOREIGN PATENTS 1,211,276 3/1960 France. 1,321,330 2/1963 France.

16,878 1904 Great Britain.

THERON E. CONDON, Primary Examiner.

sioned with respect to the the outer free extremity of said LOUIS G. MANCENE, Examiner.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3094240 *Mar 22, 1962Jun 18, 1963Illinois Tool WorksMolded nestable container having indicia protection means
FR1211276A * Title not available
FR1321330A * Title not available
GB190416878A * Title not available
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3464587 *Jan 2, 1969Sep 2, 1969Illinois Tool WorksStackable container
US3499569 *Jan 17, 1968Mar 10, 1970Plastics IncHollow stem footed tumbler
US6318575 *Sep 24, 1998Nov 20, 2001Dart Industries Inc.Nesting insulated egg server
US7861888Oct 26, 2006Jan 4, 2011Solo Cup Operating CorporationStackable stemware
US7984846 *Jul 16, 2007Jul 26, 2011PTM Packaging Tools Machinery Pte.Process and an arrangement for producing a cup
US8172127 *Jul 16, 2007May 8, 2012Ptm Packaging Tools Machinery Pte. Ltd.Cup made of a paper material
US8727206 *Jan 20, 2009May 20, 2014Ptm Packaging Tools Machinery Pte. Ltd.Cup made of a paper material
US8939312Jun 24, 2014Jan 27, 2015Top-That! LlcContainer lid system with a lid portion and food container portion
US9038845May 2, 2014May 26, 2015Top-That! LlcContainer lid with one or more cavities
US9078535May 9, 2014Jul 14, 2015Top-That! LlcContainer lid with a food compartment and a sip-hole
US9238524Jul 20, 2011Jan 19, 2016Ptm Packaging Tools Machinery Pte. Ltd.Cup made of a paper material
US9260220Apr 4, 2014Feb 16, 2016Ptm Packaging Tools Machinery Pte. Ltd.Cup made of a paper material
US9340345 *Mar 14, 2014May 17, 2016Berry Plastics CorporationStack shoulder for insulated container
US9682805Oct 25, 2013Jun 20, 2017Berry Plastics CorporationClosure for container
US20080023537 *Jul 16, 2007Jan 31, 2008Robert FrostCup made of a paper material
US20080029588 *Jul 16, 2007Feb 7, 2008Uwe MesserschmidProcess and an arrangement for producing a cup
US20080099364 *Oct 26, 2006May 1, 2008Solo Cup Operating CorporationStackable stemware
US20090184020 *Jan 20, 2009Jul 23, 2009Uwe MesserschmidCup made of a paper material
US20100213203 *Feb 23, 2009Aug 26, 2010Jaegar SarauerDrinking vessel with receptacle for drippings
US20140263602 *Mar 14, 2014Sep 18, 2014Berry Plastics CorporationStack shoulder for insulated container
USD801119 *Nov 11, 2016Oct 31, 2017Outdoor Recreation Company of America, LLCPilsner glass
Classifications
U.S. Classification206/520, 229/400, 215/10, D07/523
International ClassificationB65D1/00, B65D1/26, B65D1/22, B65D1/10
Cooperative ClassificationB65D1/10, B65D1/26, B65D1/265
European ClassificationB65D1/10, B65D1/26, B65D1/26B