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Publication numberUS3386644 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJun 4, 1968
Filing dateApr 18, 1966
Priority dateApr 18, 1966
Publication numberUS 3386644 A, US 3386644A, US-A-3386644, US3386644 A, US3386644A
InventorsZackheim Eli A
Original AssigneeJohnson & Johnson
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Collapsible container
US 3386644 A
Abstract  available in
Images(2)
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

June 4, 1968 E. A. ZACKHEIM 3,386,644

COLLAPSIBLE CONTAINER Filed April 18, 1966 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 ATTON Y June 4, 1968 E. A. ZACKHEIM 3,386,644

COLLAPSIBLE CONTAINER Filed April 18. 19 66 2 Sheets-Sheet z Taczlb.

INVENTOR. 52/ Z4ow/E/M ATTORNE United States Patent 3,386,644 COLLAPSIBLE CONTAINER Eii A. Zackheim, Princeton, NJ, assignor to Johnson & Johnson, a corporation of New Jersey Filed Apr. 18, 1966, Ser. No. 543,139 4 Claims. (Cl. 229-41) ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE This invention relates to collapsible containers and more specificaly, is directed to prop-open collapsible containers particularly suited as sterile vessels for containing liquids.

Modern medical practices, particularly those conducted in modern hospitals, have spurred a great need for single use disposable products. To satisfy this need, however, such products must be inexpensive to warrant their single use application and also must be supplied to the medical profession in a sterile condition and remain sterile upon removal from a package and while being set up for use.

The medical profession and particularly hospitals, require for a great number of procedures, graduated vessels for liquids and semi-liquid materials which, in the past, have generally been made of glass, metal, plastic and the like and are used over and over again serving the needs first of one patient and then another. One such use where liquid holding vessels are required is in the irrigation of body tissues during surgical procedures conducted in operating rooms and clinics. Such procedures, needless to say, require the utmost in aseptic techniques.

To eliminate the requirements of resterilization and repackaging of such permanent liquid holding graduated vessels, I have provided a collapsible tray formed of sheet material which is collapsible, is packaged and sterilizable in such collapsed condition and is readily opened and erected into a graduated container suitable for bolding liquids without contamination during the manipulations required to erect the container. Because my collapsible vessels are formed from inexpensive sheet materials such as paper or paperboard and the like, they can be used but once and then discarded.

Summary of the invention According to the present invention, I provide a collapsible container which can be easily and readily erected while being maintained in a sterile condition. The con tainer is rectangular in shape and consists of a rectangular bottom panel having a pair of oppositely disposed rectangular side panels and a pair of oppositely disposed rectangular end panels integrally connected to the marginal edges of the rectangular bottom panel. Gusseted corner folds are formed between the adjacent end edges of the side and end panels and a pair of pull tabs extend outwardly from the central top edge of the side panels. The container is collapsed into a folded flat position by first folding the side panels inwardly onto the upper surface of the rectangular bottom panel and then folding the end panels inwardly onto the outer surface of the folded side panels. The pull tabs extending outwardly from the top edges of the side panels are tapered having edges converging toward the outer edge of the pull tab Patented June 4, 1968 and are folded downwardly over the outer surface of the side panels. The side panels are dimensioned so as to not overlap when folded over the upper surface of the bottom panel and such that the upper edges of the end panels when folded over the folded side panels, overlie the pull tabs along their converging edges leaving the outer edges of the pull tabs exposed. Grasping the pull tabs and exerting a first upward and then outward pulling force thereon, first lifts the end panels upwardly from the underlying side panels and then lifts the side panels upwardly from the bottom panel resulting in erection of the collapsed container into a rectangular open container. By providing such preselected dimensioning and configuration for the side and end panels and for the pull tabs, my collapsible container is readily opened without tearing of the side panels and without the hands of the manipulator touching any of the internal surfaces of the container in which the sterile fluids are to be contained.

These and other attendant features and advantages of the present invention will be in part obvious and in part more readily understood by reference to the following description taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings in which:

FIGURE 1 is a perspective view of the container in an open condition;

FIGURE 2 is a top plan view of the blank from which the container is formed;

FIGURE 3 is a top plan view of the container in a collapsed condition with a portion broken away to show the relationship between the folded end panel and the pair of pull tabs provided on the folded-over underlying side panels;

FIGURE 4 is a perspective view of the container showing the lifting of the end panels upon first applying an upwardly directed pulling force on the pull tabs as the collapsed container is being erected; and

FIGURE 5 is a perspective view of the container in a partially erected condition as an outward pulling force is exerted on the pull tabs.

The collapsible container of the present invention is formed from sheet material and preferably is an integral sheet of thin, flexible sheet material. For example, sheets of paper, cardboard, 'metal foil, plastic, etc. are suitable and particularly advantageous results are achieved using a heavy weight paper or paperboard having at least one plastic coated surface, i.e. the surface forming the interior of the collapsible container.

Referring first to FIGURES 1 and 2, there is illustrated a collapsible container generally designated by the numeral and the container blank 12 from which the collapsible container is formed. The container 10 is shown having a rectangular bottom panel 14 integrally connected to a pair of side panels 15 and 16 and a pair of rectangular end panels 17 and 18 along scored fold lines 19, 20, 21 and 22 respectively.

Referring particularly to the blank. 12 illustrated in FIGURE 2, it is seen that spaced parallel scored lines 19 and 20 each intersect spaced parallel scored lines 21 and 22 at right angles. The scored lines 19 and 20 define the side edges of the bottom panel 14, the bottom edges of the side panels 15 and 16 and the end edges of the end panels 17 and 13. Scored lines 21 and 22 define the end edges of the bottom panel 14, the bottom edges of the end panels 17 and 18 and the end edges of side panels 15 and 16.

integrally connecting the end edges of side panels 15 and 16 and the end edges of end panels 17' and 18 are gusset members 25 each consisting of a first triangularly shaped section a and a second triangularly shaped section b integrally connected to one another along a common diagonally directed scored line 26 which bisects the angle existent between adjacent end edges of side panel 15 and 3 end panels 18 and 17 and between side panel 16 and end panels 17 and 18.

Centrally disposed and extending outwardly from the top edge of side panels 15 and 16 are pull tabs 28 and 30 respectively. Pull tabs 28 and 30 are integrally connected to side panels 15 and 16 along scored fold lines 32 and 34 respectively. The side edges 36 and 38 of pull tabs 28 and 3t) converge towards the outer edges 4t) and 42 thereof, forming, in essence, truncated isosceles triangles.

It is also preferred that end panels 17 and 18 be provided with means for locking the container 113 of the present invention in its open erected position. While the container tends to be maintained in its open position when filled with liquids or semi-liquid materials because of the pressures exerted thereby on the side and end panels, the containers are somewhat easier to handle during filling if locking means are provided to maintain the box in its erected open condition. To this end, the blank 12 is formed with extensions 44 and 45 along the upper edges of end panels 17 and 18, which extensions are connected thereto along scored lines 46 and 47 defining the upper edges of the end panels 17 and 18. The end edges of end panel extensions 44 and 45 terminate slightly short of the end edges of end panels 17 and 18. In a maner to be described more fully hereafter in connection with erecting the collapsed container of the present invention, end panel extensions 44 and 45 serve to lock the container in an erected open condition.

The collapsed container as shown in FIGURE 3, is formed from the blank illustrated in FIGURE 2 by first folding rectangular side panels and 16 upwardly and onto the upper surface of the bottom panel 14. This first folding occurs along scored lines 19 and 26 and as the side panels 15 and 16 are folded over onto the bottom panel 14 the gussets respectively secured to the ends of side panels 15 and 16 are simultaneously folded upwardly and onto the inner surfaces of end panels 17 and 13. The pull tabs 28 and extending from the top edge of side panels 15 and 16 are folded downwardly along scored lines 32 and 34 onto the outer surface of side panels 15 and 16. With the side panels 15 and 16 overlying bottom panel 14, end panels 17 and 18 are then folded upwardly along scored lines 21 and 22 onto the outer surface of the side panels with the gussets 25 similarly folded along scored lines 21 and 22 thereby being positioned between the inner surfaces of end panels 17 and 13 and the outer surfaces of side panels 15 and 16. An adhesive 48 is applied to the outer surfaces of side panels 15 and 16 only under the triangular sections a of gussets 25 leaving triangular sections b of gussets 25 free to move away from the outer surface of side panels 15 and 16 as the gussets are later folded along bisecting scored lines 26 upon erection of the box as described more fully hereafter.

To obtain the collapsed container illustrated in FIG- URE 3, having all the advantageous features of the present invention, the rectangular, bottom 14, side 15 and 16 and end panels 17 and 18 must have limited dimensional relationships. It is necessary that the outer edges 40 and 42 of pull tabs 28 and 30 be exposed for grasping and further that the outer edges of end panels 17 and 18 overlie the converging side edges 36 and 33 of pull tabs 28 and 30. To this end, the height h of side and end panels 15, 16, 17 and 18 must be less than one-half the width w of bottom panel 14. Similarly, the length l of the bottom panel 14 and side panels 15 and 16 is selected so that the upper edges of end panels 17 and 18 when overlying the outer surfaces of side panels 15 and 16, overlie the converging side edges 36 and 38 of pull tabs 28 and 30.

Referring now particularly to FIGURES 4 and 5, the collapsed container 10 illustrated in FIGURE 3 is erected into the open container illustrated in FIGURE l by the manipulator first inserting the tips of his fingers under the outer edges 40 and 42 of pull tabs 28 and causing them to lift upwardly from the outer surface of side panels 15 and 16. This first upward manipulation of pull tabs 28 and 30 also lifts end panels 17 and 18 upwardly from the outer surfaces of side panels 15 and 16 because of the camming action caused by the converging side edges 36 and 38 of pull tabs 28 and 30 underlying the upper edges of end panels 17 and 18-. With the end panels 17 and 18 thus lifted from the outer surfaces of side panels 15 and 15, the manipulator fully grasps pull tabs 28 and 3t exerting an outward force thereon, causing side panels 15 and 16 to lift from the upper surface of bottom panel 14. This first lifting of end panels 17 and 18 from the outer surfaces of side panels 15 and 16 substantially reduces the forces exerted by the end panels tending to hold side panels 15 and 15 onto the surface of bottom panel 14. Because end panels 17 and 18 have first been lifted away from the outer surfaces of side panels 15 and 16, outward forces exerted on the tabs 28 and 3% are sufiici-ent to lift side panels 16 and 15 upwardly into an upright position. This is particularly true when the collapsed container shown in FIGUR e 3 is in a sterilized condition as sterilizing techniques tend to adhere even more strongly the folded panels one to the other.

As shown most clearly in FIGURE 1 Where the locking means associated with end panels 17 and 13 described earlier are employed to maintain the box in the erected, open position, it is seen that the end panel extensions 44 and 45 are folded inwardly over the inner surface of end panels 17 and 18. In such a folded-over condition, the end panel extensions define narrow slots 59 at each of the corners of the upright container into which the upper end edges of side panels 15 and 16 are fitted. The stiffening strength supplied by the folded-over end panel extensions 44 and 45 is sufficient to prevent side panels 15 and 16 from returning to their folded-over position on the upper surface of bottom panel 14. However, subsequent to use of the container of the present invention, the same can be returned from its open, erected position to a fiat, collapsed position as shown in FIGURE 3 to provide less bulk for disposal by merely pressing the end panel extensions more tightly inwardly against the inner surface of end panels 17 and 18, While at the same time urging side panels 15 and 16 downwardly onto the upper surface of bottom panel 14.

As the box is being erected from its flat, collapsed condition shown in FIGURE 3 to its open condition shown in FIGURE 1, it is seen (FIGURES 4 and 5) that the second triangularly shaped sections b of gussets 25 being unsecured to either side panels 15 or 16 or end panels 17 and 18, lift away from the outer surface of side panels 15 and 16 as end panels 17 and 18 are lifted from the outer surfaces of side panels 15 and 16. The gussets 25 fold upon themselves along the bisecting scored line 26 until, when in the fully upright open condition shown in FIGURE 1, the second triangular section b overlies the first triangular section a on the outer surface of side panels 15 and 15. In this manner, the container of the present invention is maintained as an integral unit in the collapsed condition depicted in FIGURE 3, in its partially erected condition shown in FIGURES 4 and 5 and in its fully erected condition depicted in FIGURE 1.

While I have described my invention with particular reference to a preferred and specific embodiment thereof, it is to be understood that various modifications, changes and alterations can be made therein while still remaining within the spirit and scope of the invention as defined within the appended claims.

I claim:

1. A collapsible and erectable container for liquids formed from an integral flat blank of sheet material, said blank comprising:

(a) a rectangular bottom panel having a pair of oppositely disposed rectangular side panels and a pair of oppositely disposed rectangular end panels integrally connected thereto along a first pair of spaced parallel scored lines and a second pair of spaced parallel scored lines respectively,

(1) each of said first scored lines intersecting each of said second scored lines at right angles,

(2) said first and second scored lines defining the side and end edges of said bottom panel, the bottom and end edges of said side panels and the end and bottom edges of said end panels respectively,

(b) gusset means existent between and connecting each end edge of said side panels and the next adjacent end edge of said end panels,

(1) each gusset consisting of a first substantially triangularly shaped section having one edge connected to said end edge of said side panel and a second substantially triangularly shaped section having one edge connected to said end edge of said end panel,

(2) said first and second sections each having a common second edge connecting each other along a scored line angularly directed to bisect said right angle existent between said intersecting scored lines defining said gusset connected end edges,

(c) and a pull tab centrally dispose-d and extending outwardly from the top edge of each of said side panels,

( 1) said pull tabs having side edges converging towards the outer edge thereof,

(d) said blank being foldable into a collapsed container by folding said side panels upwardly and onto the upper surface of said bottom panel with said pull tabs folded downwardly over the outer surface of said side panels and by folding said end panels upwardly and onto the outer surface of said side panels with each of said gussets being folded simultaneously with said side panels and said end panels positioned between the inner surface of said end panels and the outer surface of said side panels and having said first triangularly shaped section of said gussets secured onto the outer surface of said side panels,

(1) the height of said side and end panels being less than one-half the width of said bottom panel, and

(2) said bottom panel and said side panels being dimensioned in length such that the upper edges of said end panels when folded over said folded side panels overlie said pull tabs along the converging edges thereof with the outer edges of said pull tabs being exposed for grasping with the hands whereupon a first upward and then outward pulling force thereon erects said collapsed container.

2. The invention as defined in claim 1 wherein said fiat blank of sheet material consists of paperboard having a plastic coating on at least the upper surface thereof.

3. The invention as defined in claim 1 having in addition locking means integral with said end pane-ls for maintaining said container in an erected position.

4. The invention as defined in claim 3 wherein said locking means comprises re-ctangularly extensions integrally connected to the outer edges of said end panels along scored fold lines, the end edges of said extensions terminating short of the end edges of said end panels.

References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,414,854 1/1947 Oonescu 229-3l 2,808,192 10/ 1957 Raisin 22931 2,823,847 2/1958 Eanes et al 229-41 3,091,381 5/1963 Conescu 229-3l DAVIS T. MOORHEAD, Primary Examiner.

JOSEPH R. LECLAIR, Examiner.

R. PESHOCK, Assistant Examiner.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2414854 *Dec 30, 1944Jan 28, 1947Conescu SidneyFiberboard folding box construction
US2808192 *Aug 11, 1953Oct 1, 1957John T Raisin CorpFood container
US2823847 *May 16, 1952Feb 18, 1958Foil Process CorpCollapsible container structure
US3091381 *Sep 18, 1961May 28, 1963Conescu SidneyBox construction
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3771713 *Dec 11, 1970Nov 13, 1973B DavidsonPartitioned tray having tabs, for pies and the like
US3905544 *May 6, 1974Sep 16, 1975Cavalier Packaging Company IncCollapsible solution tray
US4283002 *Oct 17, 1979Aug 11, 1981Champion International CorporationSelf opening carton
US4304352 *Mar 28, 1980Dec 8, 1981Kliklok CorporationFlanged tray with gusset corners
US4335830 *Nov 17, 1980Jun 22, 1982Industrial Packaging Co., Inc.Solution container
US4340169 *Mar 4, 1981Jul 20, 1982Champion International CorporationCollapsible tray
US4463895 *Sep 23, 1982Aug 7, 1984New England Envelope Mfg. Co.Cover for rectangular trays
US4515270 *Mar 15, 1984May 7, 1985Alfredo AlvaradoSurgical glove carton and trash receptacle
US5249550 *Sep 14, 1992Oct 5, 1993Hines Lisa CDisposable litter box
US5314112 *Apr 27, 1992May 24, 1994Jones Eric MFolder/portfolio and origami construction for forming it from a rectangular blank
US5335845 *Aug 18, 1993Aug 9, 1994Liu Yuan HsinPartitioned and foldable paper food container
US6080096 *May 8, 1998Jun 27, 2000Becker; John W.Method for packing perishable goods
US7140773Dec 22, 2005Nov 28, 2006Frontier Paper & Packaging, Inc.Method and apparatus for packaging perishable goods
US9656779 *Sep 9, 2015May 23, 2017Graphic Packaging International Canada, UlcCartons and blanks with pleats proximate corners, and associated methods
US20050040174 *Aug 21, 2003Feb 24, 2005Richard CostelloOne piece collapsible disposable bowl-like food container
US20070071368 *Nov 28, 2006Mar 29, 2007Becker John WMethod and apparatus for packaging perishable goods
US20160068297 *Sep 9, 2015Mar 10, 2016Graphic Packaging International Canada, UlcCartons and blanks with pleats proximate corners, and associated methods
WO1998058854A1 *Jun 23, 1998Dec 30, 1998Sambrailo PackagingWater pack floral shipping container system
WO2001015977A2 *Aug 31, 2000Mar 8, 2001Peterson Beck A/SA method of erecting a liner for a block carton in a freezing frame
WO2001015977A3 *Aug 31, 2000Jun 21, 2001Peterson Beck AsA method of erecting a liner for a block carton in a freezing frame
Classifications
U.S. Classification229/165, 229/117.3, 229/117.7, 229/186
International ClassificationA61B10/00, A61M3/02, B65D5/42, B65D5/36, A61M3/00
Cooperative ClassificationA61M3/0245, A61B10/0045, B65D5/3657, B65D5/4216
European ClassificationB65D5/42E1, A61B10/00L, B65D5/36B4A3, A61M3/02D4B