US 3523637 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Aug. 11, 1970 F..J. STEC CONTAINER Filed Nov. 14, 1968 INVENTUR FREDERICK J. STEC ATT'Y.
United States Patent Olfice 3,523,637 CONTAINER Frederick J. Stec, Oak Lawn, Ill., assignor to Continental Can Company, Inc., New York, N.Y., a corporation of New York Filed Nov. 14,.1968, Ser. No. 775,747 Int. Cl. B65d 33/02 US. Cl. 229-55 4 Claims ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE The disclosure relates to a container having a flexible outer casing and a removable one-piece internal supporting structure for imparting longitudinal and lateral stability to the container. The internal supporting structure is formed with openings through which a fluid product flows so that upon subsequent freezing, the frozen product and support become integral so as to facilitate the removal of the frozen product with the removable internal support.
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION The present invention relates to containers and more particularly to containers of the type having a non-rigid or flexible outer casing and an internal support.
Heretofore, reinforced containers have included a flexible outer member with reinforcing inserts selectively positioned and generally permanently attached so as to impart a desired shape to the container. These prior reinforced containers, however, have been of limited use insofar as packaging liquid or frozen concentrates or the like. Moreover, these prior structures were also difficult to assemble and expensive to manufacture.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION By the present invention, it is proposed to provide a container having a flexible cover with a unitary or onepiece reinforcing member for imparting both longitudinal and lateral stability to the container.
It is a further object of the present invention to provide a container which is particularly adaptable for use in packaging frozen concentrates or the like.
It is still another object of the invention to provide a container taken in conjunction with the immediately foregoing object which includes means for facilitating the removal of the frozen concentrate simultaneously with the removal of the reinforcing member.
The foregoing objects of the present invention are achieved by a container structure comprising generally an outer casing having a one-piece internal support which includes rigid means extending lengthwise of the container for imparting longitudinal rigidity and having transversely extending means in face-to-face engagement with opposing sides of the container so as to impart lateral stability thereto.
To achieve the simultaneous removal of the reinforcing insert and frozen concentrate the rigidifying member may be formed with openings through which the liquid concentrate flows prior to being frozen so that upon subsequent freezing, the concentrate becomes integrated with the reinforcing insert.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 is a perspective view illustrating one form of a container embodying the principles of the present invention.
FIG. 2 is a perspective view of the rigidfying member which is disposed within the casing of the container illustrated in FIG. 1.
FIG. 3 is a cross-sectional view taken through the center of the container shown in FIG. 1.
3,523,637 Patented Aug. 11, 1970 DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT Referring now to the drawings, the container 10 illustrated in FIG. 1 comprises generally an outer casing 11 formed from a flexible material, and folded to form substantially rectangular container which may be filled with a product, such as frozen food concentrate or the like.
To this end, the casing 11 may be treated so as to render the same water-proof and air-impervious, or the material may be a laminate, such as cardboard or paperboard covered with an interior or exterior lining of aluminum foil or polyethylene or any other suitable plastic film.
Disposed within the casing 11 is a rigidifying member or insert .12 in the form of a channel. The insert 12 may be such as an I-beam having a vertical web 13 from the side edging which there integrally extends a pair of transversely extending side webs 14. The channel member insert 12 may be made of any suitable rigid material such as molded plastic or molded paperboard or the like. Preferably, the material from which the channel is formed is light weight so as to minimize the gross weight of the container. While as shown the rigidifying member is in the form of an I-beam, it is to be clearly understood that other forms of the rigidifying structure may be used to achieve the desired cross sectional shape of the container.
As shown the I-beam vertical web 13 extends the full length of the container so as to provide support to the end closures of the flexible casing. In this manner, the I-beam channel provides and imparts a lateral stability to container end closure panels 15 and 16 so that the container is capable of assuming the end loading imposed thereon as by stacking other containers or objects thereon.
The transversely extending webs 14-14 are arranged so as to engage the opposing side walls 1616 of the container in face-to-face engagement. Preferably, the lateral webs .1414 are sized so as to engage the complete face between the corners of the container. If desired, the horizontal webs may be curved so as to impart a curved characteristic to the casing and thereby increase the volume thereof. It should be readily apparent that the horizontal webs impart lateral stability to the container.
While the container has been shown as being of rectangular cross-section, the container may also be formed in different cross-sectional configurations, as for example, the container may be cylindrical, hexagonal, or the like. Should the cross-section of the container be varied, the channel member or insert 12 may be similarly altered to impart the necessary lateral stability to the container. For example, should the container be of hexagonal crosssection or polygonal cross-section, the channel may be in the form of a z-section of which one of the legs forms the vertical web which traverses across the container and the remaining legs are in face-to-face engagement with the side panel.
As shown in FIG. 1 the flexible casing 11 is readily adaptable to be used with a tear strip 18 or the like for facilitating the opening of the container. The tear strip 18 may be adhered to the inner face of the casing and project through an opening at the seam side 19. Upon opening of the container 10, the contents may be removed therefrom in the usual manner.
While the outer flexible casing 11 has been described as a preformed member, it should also be readily apparent that the casing 11 may also be formed by wrapping or folding about the insert 12. When thus formed, the casing 11 and insert 12 will have all of the structure characteristics described in connection with the prior folded casing in which the insert is later disposed.
The foregoing described container 10 is particularly adaptable for use with frozen juice concentrates, such as orange, lemon, grape juice and the like. When used for this purpose the outer casing 11 is initially assembled and the rigidifying member or insert 12 inserted therein and subsequently frozen.
The fluid concentrate is then poured into the container. The insert 12 thus becomes at least particularly embedded in the frozen concentrate. To facilitate the removal of the insert along with the frozen concentrate, the upper edge of the vertical web 13 may be provided with a lifting tab 21 formed integral with the upper edge of the vertical web. Further assurance that the frozen concentrate will and be integrated with the insert 12 may be obtained by forming the vertical web 13 and transverse webs 1414 with a plurality of openings. Under normal conditions prior to freezing, the juice concentrate will fiow through and occupy the space in these openings so that upon subsequent freezing, the frozen concentrate will remain within the openings and so as to provide frozen cores extending through the openings 21. Thus, upon lifting of the insert 12 from the casing 11 the frozen concentrate will be removed therewith.
What is claimed is:
1. A container comprising a casing made from a flexible material and including a side panel means and opposing end closure panels, a rigid one-piece channel means including a vertical web disposed within said casing between said side panels and extending between said end closure panel to impart longitudinal stability to said container, transversely extending webs integral with the opposing longitudinal edges of said vertical web in face-to-face engagement with opposing surfaces of said panel means for imparting lateral stability to said container.
2. The invention as defined in claim 1 wherein said vertical web and said transversely extending webs are formed with openings for providing passages through said transversely extending webs.
3. The invention as defined in claim 1 where at least one of the transverse edges of said vertical web is formed with a tab for removing said channel means from said casing.
4. The invention as defined in claim 1 wherein said casing is of substantially rectangular cross-section and wherein said channel means is in the form of an I-beam.
References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS DAVID M. BOCKENEK, Primary Examiner US. Cl. X.R. 229-14