US 3481639 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Dec. 2, 1969 s. R. LAWRENCE 3,431,639
HOLDER FOR PAPER CUPS AND THE LIKE Filed March 4, 1968 INVENTOR SIDNEY R. LAWRENCE BY DONALD E. PORTER ATTORNEY 3,481,639 HOLDER FOR PAPER CUPS AND THE LIKE Sidney R. Lawrence, 2163 N. 66th St., Wauwatosa, Wis. 53213 Filed Mar. 4, 1968, Ser. No. 710,130 Int. Cl. A471 45/07, 45/10 US. Cl. 29431.2 Claims ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE Holders for paper cups or similar containers are known in the art. Ordinarily, such a holder either is an integral part of the cup or, if separate therefrom, is adapted to engage the cup in a supporting relationship and includes a finger gripping member which comprises either a handle through which two or more of the users fingers are to be inserted, with the tops of such fingers immediately adjacent the surface of the cup and therefore exposed to the temperature of any hot liquid contained in the cup, or a pinching surface to be pinched between the users index finger and thumb, affording only frictional resistance against a tipping of the cup due to the weight of the contents of the cup. Ordinarily, the finger gripping member is positioned at a level at or below the center of gravity of the contents of the cup when the cup is virtually full, presenting a relatively unstable configuration.
The present invention provides an improved holder for paper cups and the like, including a ring adapted to surround the cup at a level above the center of gravity of the contents of the cup, and having an outwardly projecting leverage lug on one side thereof which includes a ring slot extending outwardly from the inner edge of the ring. A handle is provided which includes a handle slot which extends inwardly from the outer edge of the handle and is adapted to interlockably engage the ring slot, an inner edge adapted to engage one side of the cup, a finger hole for the index finger of the users hand positioned above the handle slot, and a notch at the upper end of the inner edge and adjacent the finger hole upon which the rolled rim on the upper edge of the cup may rest to prevent the upper edge of the cup from descending below the finger hole. A holder for cups thereby is provided which may be disassembled and carried in the users pocket and, when assembled and used to hold a cup, will remain interlockably assembled because the weight of the contents of the cup will exert force against the inner edge of the handle, forcing the handle and the handle slot outwardly and into further interlocking engagement with the ring slot. The position of the index finger hole above the level of the center of gravity of the contents of the cup and adjacent the upper edge of the container cup, coupled with the leverage lug of the ring (which is dimensioned to extend outwardly beyond the outer edge of the handle, and under which the users middle finger may be placed), provides a structure whereby -the user may easily and effectively prevent the cups tipping away from the users index finger.
The best mode presently contemplated of carrying out the invention is illustrated in the accompanying drawings in which:
United States Patent 0 3,481,639 Patented Dec. 2, 1969 FIGURE 1 is a side elevation of a handle of a holder embodying the present invention and having a notch at the upper edge of the sloping face of the handle.
FIGURE 2 is a plane view of a ring of a holder embodying the present invention.
FIGURE 3 is a side elevational view of a holder embodying the present invention showing the handle shown in FIGURE 1 interlockably engaged with the ring shown in FIGURE 2 and a cup of the tapered type having a rolled rim on its upper edge inserted through the ring with the rim resting on the notch.
FIGURE 4 is a plan view of the holder and container shown in FIGURE 3.
FIGURE 5 is a perspective view of the holder and container shown in FIGURE 3.
It is preferred that the holder 1 be manufactured from thin, flat stock of stiff cardboard, plastic, metal or other suitable material, which may be plain, coated or printed in any desired manner. The holder 1 shown in the drawings is manufactured of plexiglass, because the transparency of such material lends to the attractiveness of the holder; its lightness of weight, to ease of handling, assembly and disassembly; and its relatively high resistance to wear, to the prolonged life of the holder. In addition, the stiffness of such material will not be materially reduced or impaired by exposure to the heat of any hot liquid which may be contained in a cup 2.
The holder 1 is comprised of two parts: a ring 3 having an inside diameter approximately equal to the outside diameter of paper cups of the type dispensed by vendmg machines, measured at a point approximately midway between the upper edge 4 of the cup 2 and the center of the cup 2, and having an outwardly projecting leverage lug 5 on one side thereof with a ring slot 6 therein extending outwardly from the inner edge 7 of the ring 3; and a handle 8 having a handle slot 9 therein which etxends inwardly from the outer edge 10 of the handle 8. It is contemplated that the present invention encompass holders in which the leverage lug 5 and the ring slot 6 are dimensioned so that when the holder 1 is assembled, the leverage lug 5 does not extend beyond the outer edge 10 of the handle 8 and the outer edge 10 will rest against the tops of the users fingers. However, it is preferred that the length of the handle slot 9 be less than the length of the unslotted portion 11 of the leverage lug 5 (i.e., the portion which extends from the outer end 12 of the ring slot 6 to the outermost edge 13 of the leverage lug 5) in order that, when the holder 1 is assembled with the ring slot 6 and the handle slot 9 interlockably engaged, the undersurface 14 of the unslotted portion 11 will extend beyond the outer edge 10 of the handle 8 and provide an undersurface 14 under which the users middle finger may be placed to provide a fulcrum against tipping of the cup 2.. Conversely, it is preferred that the length of the ring slot 6 be substantially equal to the width of the unslotted portion 15 of the handle 8 measured from the inner end 16 of the handle slot 9 to the inner edge 17 of the handle 8 in order that, when the holder 1 is assembled with the ring slot 6 and the handle slot 9 interlockably engaged, the portion of the inner edge 17 adjacent the ring 3 will be substantially coplanar with the portion of the inner edge 7 of the ring 3 which is adjacent the holder 1. A relatively smooth surface at the junction of the inner edge 7 and the inner edge 17 thereby will be presented to the surface of a cup 2 inserted in the ring 3. The horizontal Width of the ring slot 6 is substantially equal to the horizontal thickness of the handle 8, and the vertical height of the handle slot 9 is substantially equal to the vertical thickness of the ring 3, in order that, when the handle 1 is assembled, each of the slots 6 and 9 will tightly engage the adjacent sides of the other part 3 or 8 of the holder 1.
The inner edge 17 of the handle 8, as shown, has a sloping face along its entire length adapted to engage one side of a cup 2 inserted in the ring 3 and support the cup 2. The cup 2 shown in the drawing is of the conventional type having tapered sides; and a notch 18 at the upper end of the inner edge 17 of the handle provides a surface on which the outwardly extending rolled rim 19 on the upper edge 4 of a tapered cup having a relatively small outside diameter measured at its upper edge 4 may rest in order to prevent the upper edge 4 from descending down to the top of the ring 3. By virtue of the notch 18, the holder 1 also is adapted to be used for holding a cup having vertical sides and the outwardly extending rolled rim 19 on the upper edge 4 When such a vertical-sided cup 2 is inserted through the ring 3, the rolled rim 19 thereof will encounter and rest upon the notch 18 and the side of the cup adjacent the inner edge 17 of the handle 8 will engage and rest against the inner edge 17 notwithstanding the verticalness of the side of the cup 2. When in such position, the plane of the upper edge 4 of the vertical-sided cup 2 may be kept horizonal by the user, to avoid spillage, merely by canting the .handle 8 slightly away from the user to a position in which the inner edge 17 of the handle 8 assumes a more vertical position.
A finger hole 20 for the index finger of the users hand is provided in the handle 8 above the handle slot 9 and adjacent the notch 18, in order that the users index finger, when inserted through the finger hole 20, may be at approximately the level of the upper edge 4 of the cup 2.
ASSEMBLY AND USE OF HOLDER The following is a brief description of the assembly and use of the holder 1.
Ordinarily, when not in use, the holder 1 would be disassembled, and the ring 3 and handle 8 carried as separate items in the pocket of the user. When the user desires to obtain and hold a cup 2 containing, for example, coffee, he assembles the holder 1 by inserting the handle 8 within the ring 3 with the inner edge 17 thereof facing the center of the ring 3 and with the ring slot 6 and handle slot 9 in opposing relation. By moving the handle 8 outwardly so that the handle slot 9 engages and slides over the unslotted portion 11 of the leverage lug and the unslotted portion 15 of the handle 8 adjacent the handle slot 9 is inserted in the ring slot 6 until the ends 12 and 16 of each of the slots 6 and 9 are adjacent each other, the handle 8 and ring 3 are interlockably engaged. The cup 2 then may be inserted through the top of the ring 3 until (if the cup 2 is of relatively small diameter) the rolled rim 19 at the upper edge 4 thereof encounters and rests upon the notch 18 at the upper end of the inner edge 7 of the handle 8. The user then may insert his index finger through the finger hole 20 and place his middle finger under the undersurface 14 of the unslotted portion 11 of the leverage lug 5 which extends beyond the .outer edge 10 of the handle 8 and thereby grip the holder 1 to raise the cup 2 therein to his lips for drinking. The users middle finger acts as a fulcrum and his index finger as a force resistant member against the tipping force exerted by the weight of the liquid in the cup 2. When the cup 2 has been emptied, it may be removed from the holder 1 and thrown away; and the holder 1 may be disassembled by removing the handle 8 from interlocking engagement with the ring 3.
Various modes for carrying out the invention are contemplated as being within the scope of the following claims particularly pointing out and distinctly claiming the sub ject matter which is regarded as the invention.
1. A holder for paper cups and the like comprising:
a ring having an outwardly projecting leverage lug at one side thereof, with the leverage lug having a ring slot therein extending outwardly from the inner edge of the ring and an unslotted portion between the outer end of the ring slot and the outermost edge of the leverage lug, and
a handle having a handle slot extending inwardly from the outer edge of the handle and adapted to interlockably engage the ring slot when the holder is assembled, an inner edge adapted to engage one side of a cup inserted through the ring, and a finger hole disposed above the handle slot.
2. A holder as described in claim 1 in which the unslotted portion is dimensioned to extend beyond the outer edge of the handle when the holder is assembled.
3. A holder as described in claim 1 in which the ring is dimensioned to surround and engage a tapered cup inserted therethrough at a point approximately midway between the upper edge and the center of the cup.
4. The. holder of claim 1 in which the inner edge of the handle defines a sloping face for engaging one side of a tapered cup.
5. The holder of claim 1 in which the cup has an outwardly extending rolled rim at its upper edge, and a notch at the upper end of the inner edge of the handle and adjacent the finger hole for receiving and supporting one side of the roller rim.
References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,305,628 12/1942 McKay 294-33 RICHARD E. AEGERTER, Primary Examiner D. WATTS, Assistant Examiner