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Publication numberUS3519125 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJul 7, 1970
Filing dateJun 25, 1968
Priority dateJun 25, 1968
Publication numberUS 3519125 A, US 3519125A, US-A-3519125, US3519125 A, US3519125A
InventorsMacneale Neil
Original AssigneeProcter & Gamble
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Tray forming bundle wrap
US 3519125 A
Images(6)
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

July 7, 1970 N. MACNEALE 3,519,125

TRAY FORMING BUNDLE WRAP Filed June 25, 1968 6 Sheets-Sheet Fig. 3

INVENTOR. Neil Mccneole wm M ATTORNEY July 7, 1970 INVENTOR. Neil Mucneule ATTORNEY July 7, 1970 N. MACNEALE TRAY FORMING BUNDLE WRAP 6 Sheets-Sheet 5 Filed June 25, 1968 INVENTOR. Mocneale ATTORNEY July 7, 1970 N. MACNEALE TRAY FORMING BUNDLE WRAP 6 Sheets-Sheet 6 Filed June 25, 1968 Fig. 11 68 7o INVENTOR. Neil Mocneule g/M1 02 M ATTORNEY United States Patent Office 3,519,125 Patented July 7, 1970 3,519,125 TRAY FORMING BUNDLE WRAP Neil Macneale, Wyoming, Ohio, assignor to The Procter &f gamble Company, Cincinnati, Ohio, a corporation hi0 Filed June 25, 1968, Ser. No. 739,677 Int. Cl. B65d 71/00 US. Cl. 206-65 1 Claim ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE A bundle of packages contained within a taut overwrap of flexible paper is disclosed. Tear tapes are suitably located to permit opening the bundle into a lowwalled tray. Several bundle end structures are disclosed which can be adapted to facilitate access to the ends of the tear tapes.

FIELD OF THE INVENTION This invention relates to shipping bundles containing a plurality of packages and having a flexible overwrap, and more particularly to such shipping bundles which are adapted to be opened into a display tray.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION In packaging articles for shipment from factory or warehouse to sales outlets, the package for a plurality of such articles must possess suflicient structural integrity to withstand the abuse of handling during shipment. Additionally, it should possess a high strength to weight ratio and be available at low cost consistent with the above requisites.

A further objective of such packages is that they be adaptable to providing display of the packaged articles in retail outlets with minimal handling by retail sales personnel.

Where the individual articles to be packaged for shipment are rectangular packages, the prior art has provided a lightweight, high strength shipping bundle through the technique of compression packaging. This technique comprises arranging a plurality of rectangular packages in a rectangular array, applying compressive forces along one or more axes of the array and securing a flexible wrapper around the thusly assembled bundles. When the compressive forces are released from the array, the secured wrapper becomes taut holding the individual packages in the array in frictional engagement with each other, thereby maintaining package integrity. U.S. Pats. 3,263,807, Aug. 2, 1966 to L. Fingerhut and 3,354,600, Nov. 28, 1967 to W. Hoffman typically disclosed the compression bundling technique.

While providing a lightweight shipping bundle, the prior art goes only part way in solving the retail handling problem mentioned above. Means for exposing the top surfaces of packages in compression bundles to facilitate retail price marking are shown; however, the art fails to further develop means for adapting compression bundles to retail shelf display of the packaged articles; nor does it suggest that compression bundles may be so adapted.

The prior art relating to rigid corrugated shipping containers reveals a varity of means for adapting such rigid containers to retail display by cutting them into trays. These means are not, however, suggestive of the present development inasmuch as trays cut from rigid containers are in themselves structurally sound whereas a tray cut from a flexible wrapper is not structurally self-sufficient.

OBJECTS OF THE INVENTION It is an object of this invention therefore to provide a package having a taut flexible wrap which opens conveniently into a low-walled tray for displaying the articles contained within the wrap for retail sale.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION Briefly stated, this invention comprises an array of packages held in tight engagement with each other by a taut flexible overwrap, the overwrap containing two tear tapes, each extending partially across one end face of the bundle, across a side face of the bundle, and partially across the other end face of the bundle. The overwrap contains one of several end structures adapted to provide access to the tear tapes. A typical end structure comprises a pair of side flaps in contact with the package array, and top and bottom flaps containing areas removable for tear tape access overlying the side flaps.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS While the specification concludes with claims particularly pointing out and distinctly claiming the invention, it is believed the invention will be better understood by reference to the following explanation and accompanying drawings in which:

FIG. 1 is a plan view of one embodiment of a wrapper constructed in accordance with the present invention;

FIG. 2 is a perspective view of a rectangular array of articles to be packaged;

FIG. 3 is a perspective view showing the wrapper of FIG. 1 partially secured around the array of FIG. 2;

FIG. 4 is a partially fragmented perspective view showing the wrapper of FIG. 1 fully secured around the array of FIG. 2 to form a shipping bundle;

FIG. 5 is a perspective view of the bundle of FIG. 4 after it has been opened into a tray;

FIG. 6 is a perspective view of an opened bundle having a wrapper which is a modification of that shown in FIG. 1;

FIG. 7 is a perspective view of a partially closed bundle having a wrapper which is a further modification of that shown in FIG. 1;

FIG. 8 is a plan view of another embodiment of a wrapper adapted to be used in the present invention;

FIG. 9 is a perspective view showing the wrapper of FIG. 8 partially secured around the array of FIG. 2',

FIG. 10 is a perspective view of a fully secured bundle having the wrapper of FIG. 8;

FIG. 11 is a plan view of a still further embodiment of a wrapper for the present invention;

FIG. 12 is a perspective view showing the wrapper of FIG. 11 partially secured around the array of FIG. 2; and

FIG. 13 is a fragmented perspective view of a fully secured bundle having the wrapper of FIG. 11.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS Referring to the drawings, FIGS. 1 and 3-5 illustrate one embodiment of the present invention. FIG. 1 illustrates a wrapper 20 which is made of a flexible material, typically kraft paper having a weight in the range from 40 to pounds per thousand square feet. The wrapper 20 has a length suflicient to encompass the girth of the bundle to be wrapped and overlap for gluing, and has a width sufficient to cover the length of the bundle to be wrapped and provide overlapping end folds.

For purposes of illustration, chain lines 22 and 23' are shown on the wrapper 20 (these chain lines 22. and 23 do not appear as physical features on the actual wrapper prior to folding) to define bottom flaps 24, top flaps 25, side flaps 26; bottom panel 27, top panel 28, side panels 29, and strip 30. The lines 22 and 23 are laid out so that side panels 29 have a size equal to that of the vertical side of the bundle to be wrapped, bottom panel 27 has a size equal to the size of the bottom surface of the bundle to be wrapped, top panel 28 has a width (designated W-A and hereinafter explained) slightly less than the width of the top surface of the bundle to be wrapped, and bottom flaps 24, top flaps 25, and side flaps 26 all have a dimension in the direction parallel to lines 22. which ranges from slightly over one-half the dimension H of the panels 29 to the full width thereof. (The dimension H corresponds to vertical dimension H of the package array 35 shown in FIG. 2 and hereinafter described.) In the preferred variant of this embodiment of the invention, however, the flap dimension parallel to the lines 22 will range from slightly over one-half H to slightly less than H minus the desired tray sidewall height.

Six cuts 21 are provided on the wrapper 20, three extending from each of two opposite edges thereof. The cuts 21 are located on the bottom flaps 24 and top flaps 25 and are displaced a small distance (designated A) from the lines 22 defining the mentioned flaps. The length of the cuts 21 is slightly less than the distance from the edges of the wrapper 20 to the lines 23. For example, in a wrapper for bundles of detergent cartons in which the dimensions H and W are 11% and 15%", respectively, the cuts 21 will fall from about one-half to about two inches short of intersecting lines 23 and will be offset from the lines 22. a distance of from about one-half to about two inches.

Two cuts similar to cuts 21 could be placed in the strip 30 a distance A from the line 22. The same function is achieved, however, by making the top panel 28 and end flaps 25 narrower by dimension A than the horizontal dimension W (shown and described hereafter in connection with FIG. 2) of the bundle to be wrapped and gluing the strip 30 to the top panel 28 only in the area contained between. lines 23.

Two tear tapes 31 are adhered or otherwise fastened to the wrapper 20 so as to extend across side flaps 26 and side panels 29. The tear tapes 31 are spaced from the bottom panel 27 distances equal to the desired height of the tray formed by opening the bundle. The tear tapes 31 can be spaced equal distances from the bottom panel 27 to provide for a tray of uniform depth as shown in FIG. 5, or alternatively, can be unequal distances from bottom panel 27 to provide a tray such as that shown in FIG. 6 having a low wall along the one side to facilitate package display and a high wall along the other side to provide integrity and handling ease for the opened bundle. (The advantages of the latter configuration are hereinafter explained in connection with the description of FIG. 6.) As an example of the distance of the tear tapes 31 from the bottom panel 27, wrappers for detergent carton bundles dimensioned as described above can have tear tapes 31 each located two inches from the bottom panel 27 where a tray of uniform height is desired, and can have one tear tape 31 located 6 inches from the bottom panel 27 when a tray having two different side wall dimensions is desired.

Though not necessary, it is preferred that the tear tapes 31 parallel the grain of the paper to facilitate tearing thereof. As used herein, the grain direction of the paper corresponds to that direction on the paper which paralleled the length of the papermaking machine on which it was formed.

A pair of cuts 32, is provided at each end of each tear tape 31 to define pull tabs 32a for the tear tapes 31. The cuts 32 must be of sufficient length to enable a person to grasp the area contained between them with his fingers. Typically, this length will range from about A inch to about 1 inch.

Materials from which the tear tapes can be made include flat woven fiber strips of cotton or line ypically /56" wide, untwisted monofilaments of a non-wicking, strong plastic such as Dacron, and pressure sensitive rayon filament.

Perforations 33 defining removable areas 34 are located on the bottom flaps 24 and top flaps 25 to provide access to the pull tabs 32a and are located to overlie the pull tabs 32a when the bundle is secured. In the preferred variant of this embodiment (i.e., that in which the tear tapes 31 are located equal distances from the bottom panel 27 and the length of the flaps 24, 25 and 26 is less than H minus the desired tray sidewall height), only the bottom flaps 24 need contain the perforations 33.

FIG. 2 illustrates the package array 35 comprising a group of rectangular packages 36 rectangularly arranged adjacent each other in a plurality of rows. As few as two packages 36 could form such an array 35 although the advantages of this invention are most readily realized when the array 35 contains a larger number of packages 36, for example, six or more. In FIG. 2, the number 37 designates the side surface of the array 35, the number 38 designates the top surface thereof, the number 39* designates the end surfaces thereof, and the number 40 designates the bottom surface thereof.

The bundle can be assembled by placing the package array 35 on the wrapper 20 so that its bottom surface 40 is coincident with the bottom panel 27 of the wrapper 20, then folding the Wrapper 20 at lines 22. to draw the side panels 29 into superposition with the side surfaces 37 and at the same time drawing the wrapper 20 taut. The top panel 28 and strip 30 are then folded over on lines 22 to cover top surfaces 38 of the array 35. The array 35 is then compressed in the direction of dimension L of FIG. 2 (or in both the directions of dimensions L and W of FIG. 2), which corresponds with the narrow dimension of the individual packages 36 in the array 35, while maintaining the wrapper 20 taut. The top panel 28 is adhesively secured to the strip 30 whereupon the bundle is completed by folding and gluing the flaps 24, 25 and 26 in proper sequence (to be described) to complete the bundle ends. The compressive forces are then removed from the bundle, whereupon the stress in the packages 36 is partially taken up by the wrapper 20 which remains taut and maintains the array 35 in a slightly compressed state.

The forces which are applied to the array 35 are applied uniformly along its outer surfaces and are of sufficient magnitude to permit firm rigid contact between the packages 36 and to slightly deform the packages 36 to a point not exceeding their elastic limit. The strain to which the packages 36 are subjected can be, for example, .035 inch per inch of package dimension in the direction of the compressive forces.

The bundle ends can have one of several structures. FIG. 3 illustrates one such end structure in a partially closed position. In this particular structure, which accords with the preferred variant of the embodiment of the in vention which utilizes the FIG. 1 wrapper 20, side flaps 26 are folded against the end surfaces 39 of the array 35, the top flaps 25 are then folded down to overlie the side flaps 2.6, and the bottom flaps 24 are folded up last and are adhesively secured to the superposed portions of the top flaps 25 and side flaps 26 with a suitable commercially available adhesive applied to the areas 41 on the inner surfaces of bottom flaps 24. Optionally, glue may be similarly applied to top flap 25 to adhere top flap 25 to side flaps 26.

FIG. 4 illustrates a fully secured bundle which is the preferred variant of this embodiment and which has the end structure described above. The bottom flap 24 is partially cut away to illustrate the relative locations of the distal end 25a of the top flap 25, the removable area 34 (which is vertically located such that it overlies the pull tabs 32a of the tear tapes 31), and the glue'areas 41. In this preferred variant, the top flap 25 does not extend down to the plane of tear tapes 31; hence, removable areas 34 need be located only on the bottom flaps 24 and the tear tapes 31 in the bundle end portion need only cut through the side flaps 26 and bottom flaps 24 when the bundle is opened and a tray is formed. The glue areas 41 which join the bottom flap 24 to the side flaps 26 are necessary to maintain assembly of the tray formed after pulling the tear tapes 31 and removing the upper portion of the wrapper 20.

It will be noted in FIGS. 3 and 4 that a short double folded gusset 42 exists at the corners of the bundle end face. This results from the combination of offsetting the cuts 21 from lines 22 on the wrapper 20 and spacing the end of cuts 21 outwardly from the lines 23. The resulting short double fold 42 adds strength to the wrapper at the bundle corners by discouraging tearing at the ends of the cuts 21. The wrapper could, however, be made with the cuts 21 coincident with lines 22 and extending to lines 23, although some sacrifice in corner strength would be made.

Other variants of the embodiment which utilize the FIG. 1 wrapper 20 and have the end structures of FIG. 4 (or alternatively, an end structure in which the bottom flap 24 overlies the side flaps 26 and the top flap 25 overlies the bottom flap 24) can have a wrapper 20 with flaps 24, 25 and 26 whose length equals or approaches dimension H of side panel 29, and/or whose tear tapes 31 are located so that, in the assembled bundle, both bottom flaps 24 and top flaps 25 overlap the plane of the tear tapes 31. In such a case, both bottom flaps 24 and top flaps 25 must contain removable areas 34 to provide access to the pull tabs 32a, and the tear tapes must cut side flaps 26, top flaps 25 and bottom flaps 24 to open the bundle. When one of these variants is used, bundle opening can be facilitated by providing a line of weakness, such as a perforation, on the flap immediately overlying the side flaps 26, which line of weakness overlies the tear tape 31 location.

A bundle having the end structure illustrated by FIGS. 3 and 4 is openable into a tray by removing the area 34 at the perforations 33 from the bottom flap in the preferred variant (and from both the bottom flap 24 and the top flap 25 in all other variants), grasping the pull tabs 32a and pulling the tear tapes 31 through wrapper 20, and removing the thusly separated upper portion of the wrapper 20 to expose the packages 36. FIG. 5 illustrates the bundle of FIG. 4 after it has been opened into a tray. The tray material remains under stress after the upper portion of the wrapper 20 has been removed as described above, thereby maintaining the packages 36 in close frictional engagement with each other and permitting handling the trays containing the packages 36, price marking the packages 36, and stacking the trays containing the packages 36 for retail sales display.

FIG. 6 illustrates an opened bundle formed from a secured bundle having the wrapper 20 of FIG. 1 in which the tear tapes 31 are located unequal distances from bottom panel 27. When the opened bundle shown is handled, it can be carried by tilting it so the bottom of the lowwalled side is above the bottom of the high-walledside thereby providing a substantial cradlingregion which will assure that the packages 36 will remain in the tray. When the opened bundle shown is stacked for retail sales display, the low-walled side can be exposed to the customers view, thereby providing a maximum frontal exposure of the individual packages 36.

FIG. 7 illustrates another embodiment of the invention which can be formed by securing a modification of the wrapper 20 of FIG. 1 around the array 35 of FIG. 2. The modifications to the wrapper '20 made to achieve this embodiment consists of (l) placing the cuts 21 shown in FIG. 1 coincident with lines 22 and extending them to the lines 23, (2) providing two additional cuts similar to cuts 21 coincident with the line 22 which defines strip 30 and extending from the edge of wrapper 20 to lines 23, and (3) omitting the perforations 33 from the wrapper 20. In order to assure overlap of the side flaps 26, it is necessary that the distance from the lines 23 to the edges of the wrap- 6 per 20 exceed one-half the width W (see FIG. 2) of the array 35 to be wrapped.

The end structures of the FIG. 7 bundle each comprise bottom flap 24 overlying the array 35 end surface 39, the top flap 25 overlying the bottom flap 24 (alternatively, bottom flap 24 could overlie top flap 25), and side flaps 26 overlying both bottom flaps 24 and top flaps 25. One of the side flaps has a glue area 43 at which it is adhesively secured to the other side flap 26, and each side flap 26 has a glue area 43a at which it is secured to bottom flap 24 below the plane of the tear tapes 31.

A bundle having the end structure illustrated by FIG. 7 is opened into a tray by grasping the pull tab 32a on the outermost side flap 26 and pulling the first tear tape 31 through the wrapper 20, grasping thusly exposed pull tab 32a on the innermost side flap 26 and pulling the second tear tape 31 through the wrapper 20, and removing the thusly separated upper portion of the wrapper 20 to expose the packages 36.

FIGS. 8-10 illustrate still another embodiment of the present invention. FIG. 8 shows a wrapper 44, which can be made of materials similar to those cited for wrapper 20 in FIG. 1. Chain lines 45 and 46 and oblique chain lines 47 are shown (for purposes of illustration only; these lines do not appear as physical features of the actual unfolded wrapper) to define the bottom flaps 48, top flaps 49, side flaps 50, gussets 51, bottom panel 52, top panel 53, side panels 54 and strip 55. The lines 45 and 46 are laid out so that side panels 54 have a size equal to that of the side surfaces 37 of the array 35, top panel 53 has a size equal to that of the top surface 38 of the array 35, bottom panel 52 has a width (designated W-A) equal to that of the bottom surface of the array 35, minus the offset A of the cuts 56 (hereinafter described), and bottom flaps 49, and side flaps 50 all have a dimension in the direction of lines 45 which ranges from slightly over one-half the dimension H of anels 54 to slightly less than H minus the desired tray sidewall height. The wrapper 44 has a length sufficient to encompass the girth of the array 35 and overlap for gluing, and includes in its length the strip 55 whose dimension in the direction of lines 46 exceeds the dimension A (hereinafter explained) by the gluing overlap desired in the secured bundle.

'Iwo cuts 56 are provided on the wrapper 44, one on each bottom flap 48. The cuts 56 are displaced on the bottom flaps 48 from the line 45 a small distance (designated A) which, for example, in a wrapper for the described bundle of detergent cartons can range from about /2 to about 2 inches. The cuts 56 extend from the outer edges of the top flaps 49 to a point short of the lines 46. The distance between lines 46 and the termini of the cuts 56, can, for example, range from about /2 to about 2 inches in a wrapper for the described bundle of detergent cartons.

Two tear tapes 57 are fastened to the Wrapper 44 and extend across side fia-ps 50 and side panels 54. The tear tapes 57 (which can be made from the same materials as tear tape 31 described in connection with the wrapper 20 of FIG. 1) are spaced from the top panel 53 distances equal to dimension H minus the desired height of the tray sidewalls and are located exteriorly of the outer ends of the oblique lines 47, which extend from the interior corners of the top flaps 49. A pair of cuts 58 is provided at each end of each tear tape 57 to define pull taps 59 for the tear tapes 57, the cuts 58 havng dimensions as described for cuts 32 shown in FIG. 1.

Perforations 60 defining removable areas 61 are located on the bottom flaps 48 to provide access to the pull taps 59 and are located to overlie the pull tabs 59 when the bundle is secured.

The bundle can be assembled by placing the package array 35 on the wrapper 44 so that its top surface 38 is coincident with top panel 53 of the wrapper 44, then folding the wrapper 44 at lines 45 to draw the side panels 54 into superposition with the side surfaces 37 and at the same time drawing the wrapper 44 taut. The bottom panel 52 and strip 55 are then folded over on lines 45 to cover bottom surface 40 of the array 35. The array 35 is then compressed in the direction of dimension L of FIG. 2 (or in both the directions L and W of FIG. 2), which corresponds to the narrow dimension of the individual packages 36 in the array 35, while maintaining the wrapper 44 taut. The bottom panel 52 is adhesively secured to the strip 55 whereupon the bundle is completed by folding and gluing the flaps 48, 49 and 50* in proper sequence (to be described) to complete the bundle ends. The compressive forces are then removed from the bundle, whereupon the stress in the packages 36 is partially taken up by the Wrapper 44 which remains taut and maintains the array 35 in a slightly compressed state.

The bundle end structure is illustrated in a partially closed position by FIG. 9. The top flap 49 is folded down against the end surface 39 of the array 35 to shape the gussets 51 on the lines 47 described in FIG. 8. The side iiaps are then folded over against the top flaps 49, and the bottom flaps 48 are folded up last and are adhesively secured to the superposed portions of both the side flaps 50 and top flaps 49. The glue areas 62 are located as shown in FIG. 9 to leave the area on bottom flap 48 which overlies the exposed portion of the end surface 39 of array 35 free of adhesive.

FIG. 10 shows this second embodiment in the fully secured position. The bundle of FIG. 10 is opened into a tray by removing the area 61 at the perforations 60, grasping the pull tabs 59 and pulling the tear tapes 57 through the wrapper 44 and removing the thusly separated upper portion of the wrapper 44 to expose the packages 36 contained therein.

FIGS. 1l13 illustrate a further embodiment of the present invention. FIG. 11 shows a wrapper 63 which can be made of materials similar to those cited for wrapper in FIG. 1. Chain lines 64 and 65 and oblique chain lines 66 are shown (for purposes of illustration only; these lines do not appear as physical features of the actual runfolded wrapper) to define the bottom flaps 67, top flaps 68, side flaps 69, gussets 70, bottom panel 71, top panel 72, side panels 73 and 73a, side flaps 74 and strip 75. The lines 64 and 65 are laid out so that bottom panel 71 has a size equal to that of the array 35 bottom surface 40 (see FIG. 2), top panel 72 has a size equal to that of array top surface 38, side flaps 74 and the side panel 73a have a width (designated H-A) equal to that of the array 35 side surface 37 minus the offset A of the cuts 76 (hereinafter described), the side panel 73 has a size equal to that of the array side surface 37, and, to provide overlap of side flaps 69 and 74 while precluding overlap of top flaps 68 and bottom flaps 67, flaps 67, 68, 69 and 74 all have a dimension in the direction parallel to lines 64 which ranges from slightly over one-half the dimension W of top panel 72 and bottom panel 71 to slightly less than the dimension H of side panel 73. The wrapper 63 has a length sufiicient to encompass the girth of the array 35 and overlap for gluing, and includes in its length the strip 75 whose dimension in the direction of lines 65 exceeds the dimension A (hereinafter defined) by the gluing overlap desired in the secured bundle.

Two cuts 76 are provided on the wrapper 63, one on each side flap 74. The cuts 76 are displaced on the side flaps 74 from the line 64 a small distance (designated A) which, for example, in a wrapper for the described bundle of detergent cartons can range from about /2 to about 2 inches. The cuts 76 extend from the outer edge of the side, flaps 74 to a point short of the lines 65. The distance between the lines 65 and the termini of the cuts 76 can, for example, range from about /2 to about 2 inches in a wrapper for the said bundle of detergent cartons.

Two tear tapes 77 are fastened to the Wrapper 63 and extend in one instance, across side flaps 69 and side panel 73, and in the other instance, across side flaps 74 and side panel 73a. The tear tapes 77 (which can be made from the materials described for tear tape 31 in the embodiment which utilizes the FIG. 1 wrapper 20) are located laterally central of the side panels 73, and a distance equal to /zH from the line 64 on the side panel 73a, respectively. A pair of cuts 78 is provided at each end of each tear tape 77 to define pull tabs 79, the cuts 78 having dimensions as described for cuts 32 in connection with FIG. 1.

The bundle of this embodiment can be assembled by placing the array 35 on the wrapper 63 with one of its side surfaces 37 coincident with the wrapper side panel 73, then folding the wrapper 63 at lines 64 to draw the top panel 72 and bottom panel 71 into superposition with the top surface 38 and bottom surface 40, respectively, and at the same time drawing the wrapper 63 taut. The side panel 73a and strip" 75 are then folded over on lines 64 to cover side surface 37 of the array 35. The array 35 is then compressed in the direction of dimension L of FIG. 2 (or in both the directions L and W of FIG. 2), which corresponds to the narrow dimension of the individual packages 36 in the array 35, while maintaining the wrapper 63 taut. The side panel 73a is adhesively secured to the. strip 75 whereupon the bundle is completed by folding and gluing the flaps 67, 68, 69 and 74 in proper sequence (to be described) to complete the bundle ends. The compressive forces are then removed from the bundle, whereupon the stress in the. packages 36 is partially taken up by the wrapper 63 which remains taut and maintains the array 35 in a slightly compressed state.

The bundle end structure is illustrated in a partially closed position by FIG. 12. The side flaps 69 are tucked against the array end surface 39 (which shapes the gussets on the lines 66 described in FIG. 11) the top flaps 68 overlie the side flaps 69, the bottom flaps 67 overlie the side flaps 69 and are secured thereto by adhesive applied to the interior surface of the gussets 70 contiguous with the bottom flaps 67, and the side flaps 74 overlie the top flaps 68, bottom flaps 67 and side flaps 69 and are secured thereto by adhesive applied to the interior surface of the side flaps 74. Adhesive on the gussets 70 which are contiguous with the bottom flaps 67 is necessary to secure the bottom flaps 67 near the bundle corners 80, thereby assuring that the bottom flaps 67 will maintain the packages 36 in tight frictional engagement after the bundle is opened into a tray.

FIG. 13 shows this embodiment in the fully secured position. The bundle of FIG. 13 is opened into a tray by grasping the pull tab 79 and pulling one tear tape 77 through the wrapper 63, grasping the second pull tab 79 grasping the second pull tab 79 (which is exposed when the first tear tape 77 is pulled) and pulling the second tear tape 77 through the wrapper 63, and removing the upper portion of the wrapper 63 to expose the packages 36.

Many modifications of the invention can be made, and it is not intended to limit the invention to the particular structures described, all reasonable equivalents thereof being intended to fall within the scope of this invention.

What is claimed is:

1. A bundle comprising a plurality of packages each having the shape of a rectangular parallelepiped, said packages arranged in a rectangular array in which they are in proximate touching relation and are pressed against one another as the result of a compressive force acting along at least one axis of said array, and a flexible wrapper folded around said array to form a top panel, a side panel adjoining said top panel on opposite sides thereof, a bottom panel projecting from one side panel, and a strip projecting from the other side panel, said strip being superposed and adhesively secured to the bottom panel at the opposite end of the wrapper to maintain said packages in pressed and compact relationship, and a plurality of flaps projecting laterally from each end of each of said panels, said flaps comprising a top flap, a bottom flap, and two side flaps, said top fiap being connected to each of its adjacent side flaps, at least one cut on said bottom flap, said cut being parallel to the fold lines separating adjoining flaps, the cuts being displaced a distance of from about /2 to about 2" with respect to said fold lines and terminating at a distance of from about /2 to about 2" from the fold line defining the inner end of said bottom flap, said cuts causing the formation of short double folded gussets at the corners of the bundle end face adjacent said cuts when said side flaps are folded in place, said top flap being folded down into superposition with the end surfaces of said array, said side flaps being folded over to lie against said top flap, said bottom flap being folded up to overlie said side flaps and to overlap said top flap, said flaps being adhesively secured in closed overlapping relation to seal the bundle at each end thereof, said wrapper containing on its interior surface two tear tapes located vertically below the distal end of said top flap, each of said tear tapes extending laterally from the end edge of one of said side flaps to the juncture of that side flap with a side panel of said bundle, continuing across said side panel of the wrapper and then across the interior of the opposite side flap to the edge thereof, said bottom flap containing perforations defining an area removable therefrom located over the ends of said tear tapes, said bundle being converted to a tray after pulling said tapes, said tray being formed by the remaining portion of the flexible wrapper extending upwardly from the bottom panel to maintain the integrity of said array of packages.

JAMES B. MARBERT, Primary Examiner

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3043490 *Sep 8, 1960Jul 10, 1962Gerber ProdCases for containers severable to form trays
US3367487 *May 3, 1967Feb 6, 1968Kimberly Clark CoBulk package for cut size paper
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4558785 *Oct 9, 1984Dec 17, 1985International Paper CompanyTear tape openable container
Classifications
U.S. Classification206/557, 229/203
International ClassificationB65D75/52, B65D75/66
Cooperative ClassificationB65D75/66
European ClassificationB65D75/66