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Publication numberUS3680445 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateAug 1, 1972
Filing dateJun 5, 1970
Priority dateJun 5, 1970
Publication numberUS 3680445 A, US 3680445A, US-A-3680445, US3680445 A, US3680445A
InventorsCurt Charles Pearl, Sidney Poland
Original AssigneeApl Corp
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Method and apparatus for manufacturing shopping bag
US 3680445 A
Abstract
Bags with reinforced bottoms are mass-produced by supplying a continuous sheet of flexible material to a production line and reinforcing the sheet at spaced-apart intervals. The sheet is folded widthwise to bring opposite edges thereof together, and the edges are joined to each other to form a tube-like structure. Successive segments of the tube-like structure are severed from the sheet along lines adjacent to successive reinforcements, and the severed structures are closed off adjacent to the respective reinforcements.
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United States Patent Pearl et al.

[451 Aug. 1,1972

[54] METHOD AND APPARATUS FOR MANUFACTURING SHOPPING BAG [72] Inventors: Curt Charles Pearl; Sidney Poland,

both of Baltimore, Md.

[73] Assignee: APL Corporation, Brooklyn, NY.

[22] Filed: June 5, 1970 [21] Appl. No.: 43,681

[52] US. Cl. ..93/35 R, 93/8 R, 229/55 [51] Int. Cl. ..B31b 49/04 [58] Field of Search ..229/54, 55; 93/35, 8, 35 R,

93/35 H, 35 SB [56] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 3,144,815 8/1964 Davis ..93/35H 3,194,125 7/1965 Davis ..93/35H 2,854,186 9/1958 Williams ..93/35 UX Primary Examiner-Bernard Stickney AttoMey-Brumbaugh, Graves, Donohue & Raymond [57] ABSTRACT Bags with reinforced bottoms are mass-produced by supplying a continuous sheet of flexible material to a production line and reinforcing the sheet at spacedapart intervals. The sheet is folded widthwise to bring opposite edges thereof together, and the edges are joined to each other to form a tube-like structure. Successive segments of the tube-like structure are severed from the sheet along lines adjacent to successive reinforcements, and the severed structures are closed off adjacent to the respective reinforcements.

7 Claims, 2 Drawing Figures PATENTEB 1 1W 3.680.445

CUR H ES PEARL 8 DN P ND W fi mpkm mod,

their ATTORNEYS METHOD AND APPARATUS FOR MANUFACTURING SHOPPING BAG BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION This invention relates to bags and their manufacture and, more particularly, to a novel and highly effective method and apparatus facilitatingthe mass-production of shopping bags.

It is desirable that a bag, particularly if made of a highly flexible material or if intended to be carried by handles, have a reinforced bottom. A bottom reinforcement adds to the strength and useful life of the bag and improves its shape-retaining property. It is also desirable that a bag be waterproof and of the self-opening kind with a flat, rectangular bottom, so that the bag is rendered commodious and easy to pack and unpack.

On' the other hand, it is also desirable that a bag for holding groceries, small items purchased in department DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS FIG. 1 shows apparatus 10 for the mass-production of bags B in accordance with the invention. A continuous sheet of material 12, which may be polyethylene or any other flexible plastic material or which may be paper or any other flexible material having whatever additional properties may be desired (strength, water repellency, attractive appearance, etc.) is unwound from a roll 14 and supplied to a productionline. The material moves along the production line in the direction indicated by an arrow A. The material may be transparent, translucent or opaque; it may be in any color; and it may incorporate a floral, geometric or other pattern to enhance its visual appeal. In place of the roll 14, any other convenient source of the requisite flexible material can be employed.

A source of reinforcement means is also mounted adstores, and similar merchandise'be inexpensive. If a bag ja m t th d ti li I th preferred b diis sufficiently inexpensive, then, in order to attract sales and as a service to customers, the management of a store may institute a policy of giving away bags to its customers. Both from the standpoint of the store and from the standpoint of the customer, any bags given away should be as inexpensive as possible, so that the cost of the service to the customer is minimized. The desirability of minimizing cost is apparent regardless of whether or not the customer pays directly for the bag.

At present, there arev no bags available that have all of the desirable features described above, nor is there any conventional way to mass-produce such bags.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION An object of the invention is to remedy the deficiencies of the prior art noted above. In particular, an object of the invention is to provide an improved bag that is waterproof, strong, commodious, easy to pack and unpack, and of self-opening construction, and that is very inexpensive. Another object of the invention is to provide a method and apparatus facilitating the manufacture of such a bag.

The foregoing and other objects are attained in accordance with the invention by supplying a continuous sheet of flexible packaging material such as polyethylene to a production line and reinforcing the sheet at spaced-apart intervals. The sheet is folded to bring spaced-apart portions thereof together, and the spaced-apart portions are joined to each other to form a tube-like structure. The tube-like structure is severed from the sheet along a line adjacent to the reinforcement andclosed off adjacent to the reinforcement. In this way, a bag is formed having a reinforced bottom.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING An understanding of additional aspects of the invention can be gained from a consideration of the following detailed description of several representative embodiments thereof, in conjunction with the appended drawing, wherein:

FIG. 1 is a diagrammatic view of apparatus for constructing a bag in accordance with the invention; and

FIG. 2 is a perspective view of a bag constructed in accordance with the invention.

ment of the invention, the source of reinforcing material comprises a pair of rolls l6, 18 of paper, paper board, plastic or other suitable material 20 to impart stiffness to the bottom area of the otherwise flexible packaging material. For example, the reinforcing material can be high-density polyethylene, spunbonded polyethylene, or polyethylene netting.

The material 20 is guided by any suitable means (not shown) to the material 12. Strips such as the ones identified by reference numerals 22, 24, 26, 28, 30 and 32 are cut from the material 20 by conventional cutting means 34 and applied by suitable means, either incorporated in the cutting means 34 or separate therefrom, to the material 20. For example, the application may involve heat sealing or the use of an adhesive.

The strips 22, 24, 26, 28, 30 and 32 are applied in pairs across the width of the material 12 and at intervals along the length thereof. More particularly, the strip 22 cut from the roll 16 is applied between the center of the material 12 and the edge 36 thereof, and the strip 24 cut from the roll 18 is at the same time applied between the center of the material 12 and the edge 38 thereof. The strips 22 and 24 are in end-to-end relation so that, in the completed bag, they are in sideby-side relation. Similarly, a moment later, at a location spaced apart from the strips 22, 24 along the length of the material 12, the strip 26 cut from the roll 16 is applied between the center of the material 12 and the edge 36 thereof, and the strip 28 cut from the roll 18 is applied between the center of the material 12 and the edge 38 thereof. The strips 26 and 28 are in end-to-end relation so that, in the completed bag, they are in sideby-side relation. Likewise, another moment later, at a location spaced apart from the strips 26, 28 along the length of the material 12, the strip 30 cut from the roll 16 is applied between the center of the material 12 and the edge 36 thereof, and the strip 32 cut from the roll 18 is applied between the center of the material 12 and the edge 38 thereof. The strips 30 and 32 are in end-toend relation so that, in the completed bag, they are in side-by-side relation.

The spacing between successive pairs of reinforcing strips is constant. Thus, the interval between the strips 22, 24 and thestrips 26, 28 equals that between the strips 26, 28 and the strips 30, 32.

While rolls l6 and 18 are illustrated as the source of the reinforcing material 20, it is within the scope of the invention to employ any other suitable source, such as an extruder.

With the reinforcing strips such as the strips 22, 24, 26,28, 30, 32 severed from the rolls 16, 18 and firmly in place, the flexible material 12 is folded widthwise at a folding station by conventional folding apparatus 40 illustrated schematically. By the folding operation, spaced-apart portions of the material 12 such as the edges 36 and 38 are brought together in overlapping relation. FIG. 1 illustrates a folding so that the reinforcing strips are on the inside of the completed bag B, which is preferred, but it is also contemplated that the material 12 can be folded in an opposite sense so that the reinforcing strips are on the outside of the completed bag.

The edges 36, 38 are joined together by heat sealing or an adhesive. In the figure, conventional heat sealing apparatus 42 is illustrated, which works well if the flexible material 12 is, for example, polyethylene. A tubelike structure 44 is thus formed.

A tucking device 46, illustrated schematically, forms gusset-tucks in opposite sides of the tube-like structure 44.

A conventional cutter and sealer 48, which may employ heat sealing or an adhesive, severs the tube-like structure from the roll of flexible material adjacent to and immediately following successive strip-reinforced portions thereof and closes off successive ones of the tube-like structures adjacent to the respective stripreinforced portions thereof. Thus, a series of bags is formed each having a reinforced bottom. The manufactured bags B thus have their open ends facing forward on the production line. It is also within the scope of the invention to cut and seal just in advance of each pair of reinforcements, in such a manner that the manufactured bags have their open ends facing to the rear on the production line.

Handles H (FIG. 2) can be added to the bags either while they are on the production line or later to make it easier to carry the bags when they are filled with packages.

The reinforcing strips in the completed bags are arranged side-by-side across the bottom of each bag. The bottom of the bag is thus articulated and can be folded if desired, to facilitate storage. In the open position, shown in FIG. 2, the bottom tends to retain its shape, so that the bag is easy to pack and unpack. Moreover, the bag can carry a greater weight of packages and has a longer useful life than would otherwise be the case because the reinforced bottom is more resistant to puncturing and ripping. Further, if the bag is made of a waterproof material such as polyethylene, as it is in the preferred embodiment, it can be set down on wet surfaces without damage to packages therein. Or, if wet packages are therein (such as cartons of milk and packages of meat, which frequently tend to leak), the bag can be placed on a wooden table, whether bare or covered by a tablecloth, without damage.

Thus there is provided in accordance with the invention novel and highly-effective methods and apparatus facilitating the mass-production of bags. Many modifications of the representative embodiments thereof disclosed herein will readily occur to those skilled in the art. For example, block-free hotmelt can be employed to reinforce the bottom area. Also, the reinforcement can extend over the entire bottom area or a multiplicity of ribs can be employed to outline and stiffen the bottom area. Moreover, a heat seal, preferably corrugated, can be employed for this purpose. Again, composite materials such as plastic-coated paper on paper board, heat sealed to the bottom, can be used to achieve the requisite block-bottom effect. The invention therefore is to be construed as including all the embodiments thereof within the scope of the appended claims.

We claim:

1. A method of mass-producing shopping bags comprising the steps of mounting a long web of flexible material adjacent to a production line, mounting a pair of webs of reinforcing material adjacent to the production line, cutting a relatively long, narrow strip of reinforcing material from one of the webs of reinforcing material and applying it to the flexible material between the center and one edge thereof, cutting a separate relatively long, narrow strip of reinforcing material from the other web of reinforcing material and applying it to the flexible material between the center and the opposite edge thereof, said separate strips of reinforcing material being aligned in endto-end relation with their long dimensions extending transversely of the web of flexible material, folding said web of flexible material widthwise to bring opposite edges thereof together, joining said opposite edges to each other to form a tube-like structure, severing said tube-like structure from said web of flexible material along a line adjacent to the strip-reinforced portion thereof, and closing off said tube-like structure adjacent to said stripreinforced portion thereof, in order to form a shopping bag in which said reinforcing strips are arranged sideby-side across the bottom of the bag, the bottom of the bag being thus reinforced and articulated.

2. Apparatus for mass-producing shopping bags comprising means mounting a long web of flexible material adjacent to a production line, means mounting a pair of webs of reinforcing material adjacent to the production line, means for cutting a relatively long, narrow strip of reinforcing material from one of the webs of reinforcing material and applying it to the flexible material between the center and one edge thereof and for cutting a separate relatively long, narrow strip of reinforcing material from the other web of reinforcing material between the center and the opposite edge thereof, said separate strips of reinforcing material being aligned in end-to-end relation with their long dimensions extending transversely of the web in flexible material, means for folding said web of flexible material widthwise to bring opposite edges thereof together and for joining said opposite edges to each other to form a tube-like structure, and means for severing said tube-like structure from said web of flexible material along a line adjacent to the strip-reinforced portion thereof and for closing off said tube-like structure adjacent to said strip-reinforced portion thereof, in order to form a shopping bag in which said reinforcing strips are arranged side-by-side across the bottom of the bag, the bottom of the bag being thus reinforced and articulated.

3. A method according to claim 1 comprising the steps of forming gusset tucks on opposite sides of said tube-like structure.

closing ofi' of said tube-like structure is effected by heat sealing.

7. A method according to claim 1 wherein at least one of (a) the application of the reinforcing material to the flexible plastic material, (b) the joining of the opposite edges of the flexible plastic material and (c) the closing off of the bottoms of said bags is effected by an adhesive.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2854186 *Mar 15, 1954Sep 30, 1958Bemis Bro Bag CoBag
US3144815 *Dec 13, 1961Aug 18, 1964Equitable Paper Bag CoBurst resistant paper shopping bag
US3194125 *Jun 13, 1962Jul 13, 1965Equitable Paper Bag CoMethod of making paper bags having re-inforced mouth portions
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3799042 *Apr 14, 1972Mar 26, 1974Nat Distillers Chem CorpFlat-bottom plastic bags and method for the production thereof
US4014252 *Sep 2, 1975Mar 29, 1977Show Seitai Kogyo Kaisha Ltd.Method of manufacturing bags
US4726171 *Sep 12, 1986Feb 23, 1988Frito-Lay, Inc.Method and apparatus for applying article to inside of bag
US5009632 *Mar 16, 1989Apr 23, 1991Karl H. Sengewald KgMethod and device for joining foil hoses
US5401102 *Sep 30, 1991Mar 28, 1995Bagcraft Corporation Of AmericaBag with internal protective flap
US5580173 *Jun 10, 1994Dec 3, 1996Sebastian; JamesFolding bag
Classifications
U.S. Classification493/223, 493/203, 493/226, 383/121
International ClassificationB31B19/90
Cooperative ClassificationB31B2219/90, B31B19/90
European ClassificationB31B19/90
Legal Events
DateCodeEventDescription
Sep 9, 1987AS06Security interest
Owner name: ADMIRAL PLASTICS CORPORATION, A NY CORP.
Owner name: APL CORPORATION, A NY CORP.
Owner name: APL OPE
Effective date: 19870626
Owner name: WELLS FARGO BUSINESS CREDIT, GLENPOINTE CENTRE WES
Sep 9, 1987ASAssignment
Owner name: WELLS FARGO BUSINESS CREDIT, GLENPOINTE CENTRE WES
Free format text: SECURITY INTEREST;ASSIGNORS:APL CORPORATION, A NY CORP.;ADMIRAL PLASTICS CORPORATION, A NY CORP.;APL OPERATING INC., A NEW YORK CORP.;AND OTHERS;REEL/FRAME:004758/0437
Effective date: 19870626