US 3369700 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Feb. 20, 1968 H. N. NELSON MATERIAL DISPENSING PACKAGE SHEET 2 Sheets-$heet 1 Filed June 9, 1966 Feb. 20, 1968 H. N NELSON SHEET MATERIAL DISPENSING PACKAGE 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 Filed June 9, 1966 United States Patent 3,369,700 SHEET MATERIAL DISPENSING PACKAGE Howard N. Nelson, Neenah, Wis., assignor to Kimberly- Clark Corporation, Neenah, Wis., a corporation of Delaware Filed June 9, 1966, Ser. No. 556,401 8 Claims. (Cl. 221-63) ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE A compact package for a stack of flexible sheet material such as facial tissue. The stack of tissue is folded on itself in the form of an inverted U. The legs of the U are flared outwardly from each other and cooperate with an outer container to prevent the stack from shifting within the container during handling and shipment.
This invention relates to an improvement in the packaging of sheet materials. More specifically the invention is concerned with the packaging of facial tissue type sheets, and especially concerns a more compact package for such tissues.
Compact packaging for counter-displayed goods has many advantages. Obvious advantages include economies resulting from the fact that smaller package dimensions require less shipping and storage space and reduce the amount of finishing materials used. Less obvious advantages include better utilization of shelf space in stores, and more usable space for the consumer at the point of use.
Manufacturers of facial tissues have reduced package size in various ways. One of these involves compressing the stacks of tissues before packaging whereby almost twice as many tissues may be contained in a conventional size package as before. Another approach is to fold the stack of tissues on itself whereby a carton having smaller overall outside dimensions may be used. An example of the latter type package may be found in US. Patent 2,656,916 which issued Oct. 27, 1953. While package dimensions were reduced in the latter case, it was found that the contents often shifted during shipment and handling and, as a result, when a consumer opened the carton to use the tissues, he often found the tissues were not properly oriented with the dispensing opening, and could not be dispensed properly. The present invention overcomes this latter problem.
Accordingly, the primary object of the invention is to provide improvements in a dispensing package in which a folded stack of interleaved sheets is arranged in a compact container having substantially smaller outer dimensions than conventional packages.
Another object is to arrange interleaved tissues within a compact package in a manner to prevet undesirable shifting or displacement of the contents during shipment and use.
Still another object is to provide an improved compact packaging arrangement for a stack of sheet material which his been folded on itself into a symmetrical inverted U- s ape.
Other objects and advantages of the invention will become apparent by reference to the following specification and drawings.
In the drawings:
FIGURE 1 is a perspective X-ray view of a stack of interleaved sheets as they appear inside the carton when disposed in accordance with the improved arrangement of this invention.
FIGURES 2, 3, and 4 are perspective views of a forming means which may be used to fold a stack of tissues in accordance with this invention for insertion in a compact container. The figures show sequentially the various configurations a stack of tissues assumes as it is being folded before insertion into a suitable carton.
FIGURE 5 illustrates a package containing a folded stack of tissues without incorporating the advantages of this invention.
In FIGURE 2, a stack of tissues 11 is shown in its starting position in forming trough 12 which may comprise a bottom plate 13 of sheet metal or the like, a rlght hand molding board 14, a left hand molding board 15, and a central blade type ascending ramp 16. The leading portion of ramp 16 starts flush with plate 13 and gradually increases in height, ending in a flat blade 19 with the top edge of blade 19 parallel with plate 13. Molding boards 14 and 15 have inwardly disposed upper ledges 20 and 21 which gradually curve upward as the molding boards 14 and 15 converge toward each other, ending in a pair of fiat parallel side plates 22 and 23.
Additional views showing the sequential forming of the tissue stack into a symmetrical inverted U-shaped configuration are provided in FIGURES 3 and 4. Stack 11, which preferably comprises interleaved sheets, is pushed along plate 13 of the illustrated forming device by suitable means in the direction of arrow 17 (FIGURE 2). As the stack moves in the direction shown, the entire stack is gradually doubled on itself, being folded in half along a central fold line 18 which parallels the plane of the lowermost sheet in the stack before the stack is doubled on itself. When interleaved sheets are employed, fold line 18 extends transversely of the lines on which the individual sheets are folded. As stack 11 is pushed forward along ascending ramp 16 the side edges of the stack are urged inwardly while in sliding contact with molding boards 14 and 15; the upper edges of the stack are held down by the molding board upper ledges 20 and 21; and the bottom of the stack is in frictional sliding contact with plate 13. As stack 11 is pushed farther along ramp 16, the stack assumes an inverted U configuration in which the free ends of the legs of the U are flared outwardly. The height of blade 19 is substantially less than one-half the length of stack 11 so that the flared configuration of each of the lower ends of the inverted U-shaped stack is maintained as the stack reaches the desired final configuration in the confined area between plates 22 and 23.
The stack 11, while being maintained in this inverted U configuration with the lower ends flared outwardly is then inserted into a restraining wrapping means whose interior dimensions closely fit the exterior dimensions of the folded stack.
The finished package 29 is illustrated more clearly in FIGURE 1. The broken lines represent the outlines of a rectangular carton or restraining wrapper. The restraining wrapper contains a stack of tissues 11, folded on itself in a symmetrical inverted U configuration along medial line 18. The free ends, 24 and 25, forming the legs of the p U-shaped stack are flared outwardly in directions opposite from each other to give the ture.
The exterior carton or restraining wrapper, represented by the broken lines, has top, bottom side and end walls, indicated by reference numerals 30, 31, 32 and 33 respectively, which walls snugly enclose the folded stack and hold it in the upright condition shown. The flared out arrangement of the lower free ends of the U-folded stack cooperate with the adjacent restraining walls of the exterior or wrapper to act as structural members which hold the folded stack upright. In other words, the bottom surface 34 of the lowest flared out sheet in the folded stack bears against bottom wall 31, and the flared out edges 36 of a substantial number of the remaining sheets in the stack bear against side wall 32 as do their counterparts on the opposite side. As a result, the illustrated package may be subjected to the extremely rigorous conditions inherent in commercial shipping and handling without stack a stable upright struchaving the stack shift to any serious extent from the upright condition established when originally packaged. Accordingly, the tissues in the inverted U-shaped stack will remain securely in the desired upright position to permit sequential dispensing from the top of the stack through a suitable dispensing aperture such as may be formed when removable panel 35, is removed from the carton or other exterior wrapping means by the ultimate user. While an oval aperture is shown, any suitable form of dispensing opening may be provided.
To more clearly illustrate the advantages of the improved arrangement over the prior art, FIGURE 5 is presented to show in somewhat exaggerated form, how
a package containing a stack of folded tissues would appear immediately after packaging if no steps were taken, as taught herein, to provide stable supporting means. Such a stack 41, when simply doubled on itself around a central fold line 48, automatically forms a point at 43 as the free ends of tissues fan out, as occurs when no physical restrictions are placed on the edges of the individual sheets during the folding operation. The doubledover tissue stack then has a configuration which gradually tapers from point 43 to the outside surfaces of the doubled-over stack where the outer sheets meet the side walls of the exterior container or wrapper. The dimension measured from the closed top of such a conventionally folded U-shaped stack to the open bottom of the inverted U at point 43 is considerably longer than a similar dimension measured from top to bottom of the improved stack folded and formed in accordance with this invention. Accordingly, when the folded stack 41 of the unimproved configuration is packaged by insertion into a suitable container or wrapper, the container must of necessity have considerable more height to accommodate the unimproved folded stack than is necessary for the container or wrapper used to accommodate the improved folded stack. The unimproved arrangement leaves large, unoccupied waste spaces 45 and 47 at opposing bottom corners. The arrangement shown in FIGURE 5 has little inherent stability, and even if point 43 is crushed down for more compact packaging, the contents are not stable and tend to shift within the container or wrapper during shipment and storage, even under the most favorable handling conditions.
In order to test the differences between packaging arrangements utilizing the unimproved folded stack and packaging arrangements utilizing the improved folded and formed stack of this invention, several corrugated containers containing cartons of tissues packaged in accordance with the two methods described, were subjected to shipment by commercial carrier. No special instructions were given with respect to handling. The tissue stacks of both configurations were packed in sung-fitting dispensing cartons, and these paperboard cartons in turn were enclosed in conventional corrugated shipping containers. After the shipping containers arrived at their destination, they were opened and the cartons removed from the containers for examination. Each of the folded stacks which did not have flared ends showed evidence of shifting to a degree which hampered dispensing. None of the folded stacks which had flared ends showed evidence of shifting to any measurable degree, and were defect free with respect to their orientation with the dispensing opening of the carton.
The restraining exterior wrapper utilized for packages of this type most commonly comprises a disposable paperboard carton with a removable panel in the top wall which forms a dispensing opening when removed. It is understood that newly available plastic materials of semi-rigid construction may also be used to form a similar disposable carton. It is also conceivable that the outer restraining wrapper may comprise paper or thin plastic film which would be utilized to hold the folded stack in its desired configuration until ready for use. In the latter arrangement, the improved folded stack is more readily adapted for use in cooperation with a rigid permanent type dispenser made of metal, wood, heavy duty plastic or the like. Before insertion into such a permanent dispenser, the lightweight restraining wrapper of the type described above may be either wholly or partially removed.
Also, while only one means of folding the tissue stack to obtain the desired inverted U-shaped configurations with outwardly flared legs has been shown and described herein, it will be apparent that other suitable means may be employed to fold the stack and flare out the legs while still obtaining satisfactory results.
The described arrangement is particularly useful for packaging facial tissue sheets, however it is apparent that it can also be applied to paper towels, industrial wiping sheets, waxed tissues and the like. The arrangement is also useful for holding a folded stack of sheets upright in a restraining exterior package even if the sheets are not interleaved. However in such cases the entire top wall would need to be removed for access to the sheets.
It will be further apparent to those skilled in the art, that other suitable changes, modifications and variations may be made without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention as defined in the appended claims.
What is claimed is:
1. A compact packaging arrangement for sheet material comprising a stack of facial type tissue sheets folded on itself and disposed in a restraining wrapper having top, bottom, side and end walls; said stack being folded on itself in the form of a symmetrical inverted U with the legs of said U being flared outwardly; said folded stack being disposed within said constraining wrapper with the bottom surface of the flared out portion of the lowest sheet in said folded stack bearing against the bottom wall of said wrapper and a substantial number of the flared out side edges of the remaining sheets in said stack bearing against the respective side walls of said wrapper.
2. The arrangement of claim 1 in which the sheets in said stack are interleaved.
3. The arrangement of claim 1 in which the restraining wrapper comprises a rigid material having a dispensing aperture in the top wall.
4. The arrangement of claim 1 in which the top wall of said restraining wrapper is provided with a removable panel adapted to provide a dispensing aperture therein.
5. The arrangement of claim 4 in which the restraining wrapper comprises a disposable paperboard carton.
6. The arrangement of claim 4 in which the restraining wrapper comprises rigid plastic.
7. The arrangement of claim 4 in which the restraining wrapper comprises paper.
8. The arrangement of claim 4 in which the restraining wrapper comprises thin plastic film.
References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,085,649 6/1937 Cluck 20657 2,195,622 4/1940 Fourness et al. 221-63 2,549,433 4/1951 Curry 206-67 X 2,656,916 10/1953 Henderson 221 3,001,645 9/ 1961 Hernberg 20657 3,265,241 8/1966 McColgan 221-47 SAMUEL F. COLEMAN, Primary Examiner.