US 3326444 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
June 20, 1967 M. T. FARQUHAR ETAL MULTI-COMPARTMENT CARTON Filed Sept. 2, 1964 ATTORNEY United States Patent 6 F 3,326,4414 MULTll-COMPARTMENT CARTQN Melville T. Farquhar, Bon Air, Va., and Lowell 1H. Peterson, La Grange, lll., assignors to Reynolds Metals Company, Richmond, VlL, a corporation of Delaware Filed Sept. 2, 1964. Ser. No. 393,950 Claims. (Cl. 229--27) This invention relates to collapsible cartons adapted to house a plurality of separate articles, and more particularly to a carton comprising one piece of material and having at least three compartments formed therein.
The use of cartons formed from a single blank of material is well known, and as such involves no novel feature of the present invention. However, in known types of onepiece cartons having an integral divider between compartments, the limitations as to dimensions of the blank are such that little or no flexibility is possible in forming the carton with a varied number of, or size of, compartments. By contrast, in accordance with the present invention a carton may be formed with two, three, or four compartments while using the same blank as an intermediate, and if desired, the relative sizes of the first, second, third and fourth such compartments may be varied within wide limits while still employing that same blank intermediate.
An object of the invention is to provide a collapsible, one-piece, multi-compartment carton having adaptability as to choice of the number of, and the relative sizes of, its compartments by the user thereof.
Another object is to provide a collapsible, one-piece multi-compartment carton in which separate articles may be held in a substantially uniform manner.
Another object is to provide a collapsible, one-piece, multi-cornpartment carton having substantially inherent reinforcement without materially interfering with the col lapsibility of the empty carton.
Other objects and advantages of the invention will become more apparent as the description proceeds and when considered in conjunction with the accompanying drawings in which:
FIG. 1 is a perspective view of the opened carton showing the four compartment type with each compartment of equal size;
FIG. 2 is a developed view of a blank from which the carton of FIG. 1 may be formed;
FIG. 3 is a top plan view of the carton of FIG. 1 with the top and bottom flaps removed;
FIG. 4 is a sectional view taken on line 4-4 of FIG. 3 and FIG. 5 is a sectional view taken on line 55 of FIG. 3.
In accordance with the invention, a single blank is provided which, when assembled, forms a carton of parallelepiped shape having first and second interior partitions defining at least three compartments communicating with each other. The second partition is integral with the first partition, which in turn projects from a reinforcing panel extending from one of the side wall portions of the blank. This second partition on three of its sides is cut from the first partition and the location of these cuts serves to establish the relative sizes of two of the three compartments. Similarly, a third partition may be cut from the first partition when four compartments are desired and the relative sizes of these four compartments is established by the locations at which these second and third partitions are cut from the first partition. In all cases, the length of the first partition is greater than the length of either of the second and third partitions.
Referring now to FIG. 2 there is provided a flat blank of a suitable material such as card board having side Wall and end wall panels 10, 11 and 12, 13 respectively and with fold lines 14, 15 and 16 therebetween. Each of these 3,326,444 Patented June 20, 1967 wall panels has attached thereto at its upper and lower edges a pair of upper and lower flaps as seen at 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22 and 23, 24. Slits 25, 26 and 27 separate the respective upper flaps while slits 28, 29 and 30 separate the respective lower flaps. Upon filling of the carton the respective flaps are folded upon each other to form a conventional top and bottom for the carton.
Extending laterally from the central portion of the edge of side wall panel 11 is an elongated section including a reinforcing panel 31, a first partition member 32, and a securing tab member 33 which conveniently may have adhesive on one face thereof. Fold lines 34, 35 and 36 are provided between these respective parts of the elongated lateral portion of the blank. Generous areas of the panel member 31 and tab member 33 are provided for reinforcement purposes.
Considering now the blank as above described and with respect to the erected carton as shown in FIGS. 1 and 3, the first partition member 32 extends parallel to and between the side walls 10 and 11 and its reinforcing panel 31 is disposed in contact with a portion of the inner surface of the end wall 12, these contacting surfaces preferably being adhesively secured to each other. The securing tab 33 likewise is held in adhesive engagement with the inner surface of end wall panel 13. Insofar as the collapsible basic carton described is concerned, it represents cartons heretofore employed and, as will be noted, provides only two interior compartments, the relative sizes of which are established by the location. of the fold lines 35 and 36.
The lack of adaptability to additional usage present in such a carton is overcome in the present structure as best seen in FIGS. 2, 4 and 5 and wherein one or more additional partitions are arranged for use in the interior of the carton. When, for example, a carton requiring four compartments of equal size is desired, as: when packaging bottles or the like of equal size, the following construction may be employed. At the midlength of the first partition 32 a fold line 49 for a second partition 41 is formed in the blank intermediate prior to erection of the carton and this partition may include an anchoring tab 42 at its distal end, the tab joining the partition 41 along a fold line 43 and with peripheral slits 44, 45 and 46 separating the partition 41 and tab 42 from the body of the first partition. Preferably the second partition extends toward the panel 31 along an incline and for a purpose later to become apparent, but it may extend parallel to the length axis of the first partition without departing from the invention. Similarly, a third partition 51 joined to the first partition along a fold line 50 at the midlength of that first partition is provided. This third partition includes an anchoring tab 52 joining it along fold line 53 and with peripheral slits 54, 55 and 56 separating the third partition and its tabfrom the body of the first partition. The slits 44, 54 and 46, 56 preferably are parallel to each other in one convenient arrangement the slit 54 is a continuation of slit 46. Upon assembly of the carton as seen in FIG. 3, the second partition 41 then separates the carton interior into two equal size compartments 48 and 49 and the third partition 51 separates the carton into two more equal sized compartments 58 and 59. The respective securing tabs 42 and 52 are adhesively secured to the inner wall of side panels 10 and 11 and in the two diagonal compartments 49 and 58 no tabs are located. Furthermore, as seen in FIG. 4 the first partition 32 has formed therein spaces 38 and 39 defined by the outward bending of partitions 41 and 51 respectively. These spaces serve to communicate the respective compartments with one another and assist in permitting the rapid insertion of articles into the carton while that carton is being filled on high-speed filling apparatus with articles which are closely fitted to the carton walls.
As will be understood, the number of the thusdescribed second and third partitions may 'be varied, as when the articles being filled into the carton require confinement transversely at more than one region. In such a carton, a second pair of these second and third partitions as seen at 61 and 71 are employed. In this modification the partitions 41 and 61 jointly serve to define the compartments 48 and 49 and the partitions 51 and 71 jointly serve to define the compartments 5? and 59. More than two pairs of these partitions may of course, be used without departing from the invention. As a result of the slitting of the partition 32 along inclined lines, the securing tabs 42 and 52 of the respective second and third partitions may be affixed to the side Walls of the carton at substantially equal distances from the tops and bottoms of the carton, thus to provide substantially uniform loadings on the side walls of the carton and also holding each article in its place in a substantially uniform manner.
As will further be seen, the unfilled carton, after the partitions are secured in place, may be collapsed by separating the diagonal corners 72 and 73 (FIG. 3) from each other and as this collapsing occurs the respective second and third partitions move into the spaces 38 and 39 and permit a substantially flat collapsing of the empty carton for storage, shipment, or the like.
With the foregoing in mind a significant feature of the invention will now be evident. In case a carton having only three compartmentsis needed for holding one large article and two small articles having half the size of the large article, then the same intermediate blank may be employed as when four compartments for such small articles are used, either the partition 41 and 61 or the partitions 51 and 71 being unemployed in such a situation. In order to dispense with the function of the unneeded partitions they merely may be left in place in the first partition when the carton is being erected prior to filling.
Furthermore, the intermediate blank may be furnished to the user without the second or third partition being slitted, and the position of such slits may then be made by the user prior to erection of the carton. In such a case the axes of fold lines 40 and 50 may be shifted in either direction from the midlength of the first partition and these axes need not necessarily coincide. Thus when only the first and second partitions are employed, three compartments adapted to house articles of three different sizes may be provided. When the first, second and third partitions are employed and the axes of the fold lines 40 and 50 do not coincide, four compartments adapted to house articles of four different sizes may be provided.
A further modification is feasible by varying the length of the panel 31 so as to dispose the first partition at unequal distances between the parallel side walls and 11, and with which that first partition also is parallel. In this arrangement the respective lengths of the second and third partitions 41 and 51 will be unequal since one of them is then required to extend a greater distance to reach its anchoring side wall than the other is required to extend to reach its anchoring side wall.
In all of the above situations, the overall size of the carton is unchanged, and the same blank intermediate is employed. As will now be apparent to those skilled in the art, this adaptability is of importance in controlling costs of packaging, reduction of inventories, and in scheduling of production. In all instances, the carton upon selection of the desired partition arrangement and upon securing of the partitions in place on the side wall or walls, may then be collapsed into substantially flat form while awaiting the filling of the carton; this degree of collapsing being enhanced since the second and third partitions will fit into the spaces cut from the main partition when that carton is collapsed by separation of its diagonal corners 72 and 73.
Having thus described the invention, it will be appreciated that although a particular embodiment of the same has been described the invention is in no way limited to that embodiment, since modifications can be made, and it, therefore, is contemplated by the appended claims to cover all modifications as fall within the true spirit and scope of the invention.
What is claimed is:
1. A carton having at least three communicating separate compartments for containing separate articles and formed of a single blank, said carton being collapsible and comprising first and second parallel side walls, first and second parallel end walls, top and bottom parallel wall means, a first interior partition extending parallel to and between said side walls and forming an integral extension of one of said side walls, said first partition having top and bottom edges respectively engaging said top and bottom wall means to reinforce said carton intermediate said side and end walls thereof, said first partition having a canton-reinforcing panel parallel to said end walls and in contact with an interior portion of one of said end Walls, said first partition projecting from said panel and afiixed to the other end wall, and a second interior partition projecting from said first partition and attached at its end to one of said side walls, said second partition being integral with said first partition and having a length less than the length of said first partition, said second partition comprising a cut-out portion of said first partition intermediate said carton-reinforcing panel and said other end wall whereby said first partition provides columnar support between said top and bottom Wall means at and adjacent to said end walls, said cut-out portion defining a space in said first partition adapted to be occupied by said second partition when said carton is fully collapsed and to establish communication between said compartments when said carton is in normal use.
2. A carton as defined in claim 1 having a plurality of said second interior partitions, each of said second partitions being spaced from each other and attached at their ends to a common side wall of said carton.
3. A carton having at least four communicating separate compartments for containing separate articles and formed of a single blank, said carton being collapsible and comprising first and second parallel side walls, first and second parallel end walls, top and bottom parallel wall means, a first interior partition extending parallel to and between said side walls and forming an integral extension of one of said side walls, said first partition having top and bottom edges respectively engaging said top and bottom wall means to reinforce said carton intermediate said side and end walls thereof, said first partition having a carton-reinforcing panel parallel to said end walls and in contact with an interior portion of one of said end walls, said first partition projecting from said panel and affixed to the other end wall, a second interior artition projecting from said first partition and attached at its end to one of said side walls, a third interior partition projecting from said first partition and attached at its end to the other of said side walls, said first and second partitions being integral with said first partition and having a length less than the length of said first partition, each of said second and third partitions comprising a cut-out portion of said first partition intermediate said carton-reinforcing panel and said other end wall whereby said first partition provides columnar support between said top and bottom wall means at and adjacent to said end walls, said cut-out portions defining spaces in said first partition adapted to be occupied by the respective second and third partitions when said carton is fully collapsed and to establish communication between said compartments when said carton is in normal use.
4. A carton as defined in claim 3 wherein each of said second and third partitions terminate in tabs adapted to be adhesively secured to the inner surfaces of the respective side walls of said carton, said second and third partitions being cut from said first portion in such a man- 5 ner as to dispose their respective tabs at substantially equal distances from the tops of said side walls.
5. A carton as defined in claim 3 having a plurality of said second interior portions spaced from each other and attached at their ends to a first common side wall of said carton, and a plurality of said third interior partitions spaced from each other and attached at their ends to a second common side wall of said carton.
6 References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,943,763 7/1960 Richardson 229-28