US 3334714 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
8, 1967 A. J. GORDON 3,334,714
HAND CARRIED CASE Filed May 31, 1966 ALFRED JACK GORDON F I BY v G 5 /6' ATTORNEYS A/ M W W r United States Patent 3,334,714 HAND CARRIED CASE Alfred J. Gordon, Adrian, Mich., assignor to Great Lake Aluminum Fabricators, lnc., Hudson, Mich, a corporation of Michigan 7 Filed May 31, 1966, Ser. No.-5$3,826
7 Claims. (Cl. 19057) This invention relates to transportable cases designed to be carried in the hand and more specifically to such a case consisting of a pair of separable casing sections which may be joined with one another to form a sealed article containing compartment and an integral handle for the case.
conventionally, article carrying cases designed to be carried by the hand such as luggage, attach cases, valises, musical instrument cases, and the like, have been provided with a handle which is pivotably attached to the container defining the article carrying compartment. Such cases having a separate hinged handle normally have their useful life reduced because the handle has a tendency to break away from the container as the hinges wear or are broken by contact with sharp-edged objects.
To overcome the shortcomings of hinged handles, vattempts have been made in the prior art to provide a case formed of a pair of sections which are movable with respect to one another. Normally the sections each have a handle half which engage one another whefi the case sections are joined to form anintegral, unitary handle. The problem associated with handles of this character has been the difficulty in economically forming the two halves such that they may be tightly engaged so that the article containing compartment is fluidly sealed.
To overcome the above problem, the present invention contemplates a hand carried case comprising a pair of separable framed casing sections, each having an elo'ngated opening and complementarily shaped molded seals associated with each of the openings. When the casing sections are joined one to the other, the molded seals engage one another to cooperate with the casing frames to form a unitary handle sealed from the interior comtively small articles, such as a musical instrument, drafts-' man's tools, or precision instruments and the like. The case is formed of two similar and separable casing sections, each section formed of'a sidewall preferably of a molded plastic sheet framed in aluminum extrusions. Each section has a rectangular shape and is preferably joined together along a long edge by a hinge. The two sections are movable with respect .to one another from a closed position wherein they cooperate to form an article carrying compartment therein andan open position permitting access to such compartment. The plastic sheet or sidewalls of each section each have an elongated opening formed adjacent the long side of the frame opposite the hinged side.'The side wall is turned inwardly around each opening to form a peripheral flange. A close fitting, molded, thin walled sealing section is provided for each of the flanges. The sealing sections each have a generally U-shaped cross-section which embraces their flange and which are adapted to engage with one another when the casing sections are in the closed position. Thus, when the two casing sections aremoved so that the casing frames abut one another, the frames and the openings cooperate to define a handle for the case.
A further feature of the case embodying the present invention is that the extrusions that form the frame of each of the casing sections on the hinged sides each have partment.
Patented Aug. 8, 1967,
longitudinally extending semi-circular recesses. A third extrusion consisting of a semi-circular section has one of its ends disposed in each of the recesses. The ser'nicircular section has small lips'on each of its edges which mate with similar lips on the outer edges of the semicircular recesses in the two extrusions, to prevent the semi-circular hinge member from being withdrawn from the recesses. Thus, the extrusion is useful not only in forming an article carrying case having an integral handle, but in addition, provides components of the hinge connecting the two sections.
Since the case need only be fixed in either the'open or closed position, it is desirable to provide means to retain the case at these two extremes. In the preferred embodi- I ment, this is achieved by a pair of arcuate leaf springs which are arranged on the interior of the case with one end embracing one of the extrusions and the other end embracing the other extrusion. The arrangement is such that as the ends of the spring are urged toward one an- .other theytend to pressure the two cases into either an open or closed position,.but not both. The arrangement is much like an over-center linkage and the springs are gaged or locked with respect to one another, a locking device isprovided which takes theform of a rivet having a rounded head which projects inwardly from the inner faceof the frames forming the short sides of one of the casing sections. The inner face of the frame on the opposite casing section carries a resilient arm member extending from the frame and having a recessed portion adapted to frictionally engage the head of the rivet when the two frames abut one another in the closed position.
It is therefore to be seen that the primary object of the present invention is to provide an article carrying case consisting of a pair of section casings hinged toone another such that they are movable between a closedposition wherein they form a sealed article carryirigcompartment and an integral hand gripping structure, and an open position wherein they permit access to such com- It is a further object of the present invention to provide such a case having an integral handle and also having'a hinge consisting of a pair of extruded framing sections, each of which has an arcuateslot formed therein and a third extruded section having an arcuate cross-section which is adapted to be locked with its ends within the slots so as to form a guide for pivotable rotation of one of the slotted extrusions with respect to the other and wherein the preferred extruded sections provide not only part of the hinge, but also part of the integral handle.
Other objects, advantages and'applications of the present invention will be made apparent to one skilledinthe art to which the invention pertains upon reference to the following detailed description of apreferred embodiment of the invention and to the accompanying drawings in which like reference characters refer to like parts through out the several views, in-which:
FIGURE 1 is a perspective view of a case, illustrating a preferred embodiment .of the invention, shown in a t a closed position; V I Y ,FIGURE 2 is a perspective view of the case of'FIG- URE 1 shown in an open position; 7
FIGURE 3 is a detailed sectional view handle section taken along line 3 '-3 of FIGURE "1;
FIGURE 4 is a sectional view of the locking clasp-as seen from lines 4 4 of FIGURE 1; and
through the I FIGURE -5 is a detailed sectional view taken through URE 2.
Now referring to the drawings, a preferred embodiment of; the invention consists of a case of the type which may be used for a musical instrument. The case is formed of a bottom section generally indicated at pivotally hinged to a top section 12 by a hinge generally indicated at 14. The-case sections each include a side panel 16 and 18 formed of generally rectangular sheets of thin vacuum formed plastic. The side panels 16 and 18 are generally similar to one another. Preferably, the extreme edges of the side panels 16 and 18 are bent generally normally to the main section to form lips 20 and 22 which project fully around the perimeter of the sides to give the sections a dished aspect. Outwardly extending bulges 24 and 26 are formed in the middle of each side of the lips 20 and 22..The bulges 24 and 26 have a width less than that of their respective lips and they project along the major portion of each of the lips terminating a short distance away from the end of the lip. The bulges 24 and 26 are used to retain the side panels 16 and 18 in their edge frames. The edge frames each comprise four sections of aluminum extrusions formed in a rectangular pattern. The peripheral edge frame for the side panel 16 comprises an elongated side member 28, a pair of short end members 30 disposed normallyto the side member 28 and an elongated hinge member 32 which is disposed parallel to the side member 28 and separated by the length of the end member 30. The side panel 18 is similarly framed in an elongated side member 34, a pair of normally disposed end members 36 and a hinge member 38.
The four side members of each of the two side panels are preferably formed of a single length of extrusion beveled at three points and bent normally at these points to form a rectangular frame. The open ends are joined together by suitable means to form a unitary frame. Thus,
the cross-sections of the four sides of each of the two frames are identical. The'cross-sections of the two framing sections are shown in FIGURES 3, 4, and 5. The cross-sectionof the peripheral framing section for'the .casing section 18 is typified by the cross-section of the hinge member 38 in FIGURE 5 and has a rectangular shape, having a height exceeding its width. On what will be termed the inner face of the section, an arcuate slot 40 is formed. The slot 40 extends normally to the face of the section on which it opens and then curves in the direction of one of the side walls. The cross-section of the slot 40 is uniform throughout the length of the section 38 except for a lip 42 which extends into the slot from the convex side ofv its opening at the surface of the section.
54 which extends from the opening of the arcuate slot.
' which includes a slot 56 formed from the opposite face with a lip portion 58 projecting from the surface'of the opening of the slot inwardly to retain the bulge section 26 on the side panel 16.
-The two hinge members 32 and 38. are joined together by an arcuate extrusion 60. The extrusion 60 has the same curvature as the slots 40 and 52 and has a developed width equal to the sum of the length of the two slots. Its. thickness is equal to the thickness of the slots 40 and52 i less the extension of their tabs 42 and '54. The extrusion 60 has extending tabs 62 on the two edges of its convex surface and is assembled to the hinge member 32 and 38 by inserting its ends longitudinally into the slots 40 and 52 before the extruded frame is closed into its rectangular configuration. Thus, it can be seen that the tabs. 62 prevent the ends'of the arcuate section 60 from'being removed from the slots 40 and 52. m It'can be seen that the recess 48 and the tipl50 form a hinge line which allows the sections 10 and 12 to be rotated between the open position shown in FIGURE 2 and the closed position shown in FIGURE 1. In the closed position, the arcuate extrusion 60 lies wholly within the slots 40 and 52; while in the open position, only its extreme ends are received within the slots. When the case is in the closed position, the tip 50 which runs continu' ously around the frame sections :32, 30 and 28 mates with the recess 48 which runs completely around the frame sections 34, 36 and 38 to form a seal.
The two sections are biased into either an open or closed position by a pair of arcuate springs 64. The springs 64 are r formed of arcuate sections of sheet spring steel. One' of the springs 64 is located adjacent to each of the extreme ends of the two hinged frameseetions 32 and 38 and include bent sections 66 such that the springsfasten over opposite faces of the hinge members 32 and 38 as can A second slot 44 is formed inwardly from the face of the section opposite to that which carries the slot 40 and is adapted to retain the bulged portion 26. The slot 44 is generally rectangular and has side walls which extend normally inwardly from the face ofthe section that it opens on. An inwardly extending lip 46 is formed on one of the sidewalls adjacent the opening surface. The lip 46 is adapted to' retain the edgeof the side panel 18 by trapping the bulged portion 26 formed along the edge of that side. I
The, extruded frame 38 also has formed on the corner of the inner face a small recess 48.
The hinge member 32 has a cross-section which is typical of the framing for the side panel 16 and which is substantially identical to the section of the hinge member 38 except that it has an extending tip instead of the recess 48. The tip 50 is complementary shaped to the recess 48 such that when the side panels 16 and 18 are moved outer into the open position, the tip 50 is received by the recess case in the closed position.
be seen in FIGURE 5, such that they embrace the two hinge members.
The-springs 64 act with the hinge frame members as an overcenter linkage. The ends 66 of the springs are urged toward one another by spring tension. When the case sections 12 and 10 are in an intermediate position, that is half way between open and closed, the spring ends'66 fare at an'extreme distance from one, another. If the case is moved to either an open or closed position from the intermediate position,- the springends move closer. to one another Thus, the springs urge the two case sectionsinto either an open or closed position, but resist motion toward the intermediate position between open and closed.
In order to firmly lock the case in the closed position,
a fiat spring member 68 is fastened on thetinnerface 3 of each of the oppositeshort end members preferably by threaded fasteners 70. When side members 28 and 34 abut one another, the members 68 overlap the-opposite frame member to engage a rounded projection 72swhich in the preferred embodiment takes the form of a rivet member and which is received by a recessed. sectionv74 formed .in the spring members 68. Thus,.the two spring members 68 and the rounded projections 72 cooperate'to firmly lock the Now referring to FIGURES 2 and 3, the-side panels 16 and 18 each have a flanged portion 76 and 78 which define a generally trapezoidally shaped opening .formed along the side members34 and 28 which are opposite the hinged sides. A molded generally U-shaped seal 80 tightly embraces the inwardly directed edge of the flange 78.,The
opposite fiange76 carries a peripheral seal 82 adapted to embrace .the inwardly directed peripheral edge of the flange 76 and which includes an offset portion 84 which when the side members 34 and 28 abut one another, mates with the seal 80 to provide a peripheral seal around the opening. Thus, the side members 34 and28 cooperate with the sealed opening to provide a convenient hand grip for the user.
It can be seen that the preferred case is formed of an extruded aluminum section which forms part of an integral handle and also integral components of the hinge means 14. It can be further seen that by making the handle an integral part of the casing rather than a separate piece, as is p ovided in the conventional case, fewer parts are required, and the produced case has an improved stream lined appearance. The handle openings may be formed in the process of shaping the side panels 16 and 18. Thus the improved case has a neater appearance, and is formed of fewer parts, capable of easy fabrication. The seals permit the casing sections to be closed to provide a sealed article containing compartment.
Having thus described my invention, I claim:
1. A transportable case comprising:
(a) a pair of separable casing sections movable relative,
to one another between a closed position in which they define an article-receiving compartment therein and an open position permitting access to such compartment;
(b) each of said sections including a rigid side wall encased in a normally extending peripheral frame;
(c) each of said side walls having a similarly shaped opening formed along a side of said peripheral frame; and
(d) a molded seal associated with the periphery of each of said openings and said seals adapted to engage one another in a sealing relationship when said casing sections are in the closed position so that said openings and said frame cooperate to form a unitary handle for said case.
2. A transportable case as defined in claim 1 wherein slots.
each of said side walls is encased in a rectangular frame;
said frames pivotably connected along a long side of said frames; and said openings formed in said side walls along the long sides opposite said hinged sides.
3. A transportable case as defined in claim 2, wherein each of said side walls has a similarly shaped opening in cluding a peripheral rim defined by an inwardly turned flange, and said seals closely fit said flanges and are complementarily shaped so that they engage one another when said casing sections are inthe closed position. 1
4. A transportable case as defined in claim 3; wherein said frames comprise a pair of elongated aluminum extrusions, bent normally at three points to form a rectangular frame.
5. A transportable case as defined in claim 4, wherein said extrusions each have an arcuate slot and are hinged together along a common pair of sides 'by an arcuate extrusion which has a portion of 'its width in each of the 6. A transportable case as defined in claim 5, including means associated with the short sides of said frames for releasably locking said-frames in an abutting relationship. v
7. A transportable case as defined in claim 6, wherein each of said frames is adapted to retain a generally planar plastic side member with dishededges extending generally normally to the plane of the side member.
References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,283,832- 11/1918, McCarroll 220-94 X FRANKLIN T. GARRETT, Primary Eraminer