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Publication numberUS3721337 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateMar 20, 1973
Filing dateFeb 19, 1971
Priority dateFeb 19, 1971
Also published asCA959798A, CA959798A1, DE2206071A1, DE2206071C2
Publication numberUS 3721337 A, US 3721337A, US-A-3721337, US3721337 A, US3721337A
InventorsBraun L, Klygis M
Original AssigneeIllinois Tool Works
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Quick opening container package
US 3721337 A
Abstract  available in
Images(1)
Previous page
Next page
Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

March 20, 1973 Lfc. BRAUN ETAL 3,721,337

QUICK OPENING CONTAINER PACKAGE Filed Feb. 1.9. 1971 INVENTOR Leo/20m C. Bray/7 M. Ju/ws K /yg/s BY 5 W g1. 0

United States Patent 3,721,337 QUICK OPENING CONTAINER PACKAGE Leonard C. Braun, Elk Grove Village, and M. Julius Klygis, Evergreen Park, IlL, assignors to Illinois Tool Works Inc, Chicago, Ill.

Filed Feb. 19, 1971, Ser. No. 116,783 Int. Cl. B65d 71/00; B66f 19/00 US. Cl. 206-65 E Claims ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION This invention relates to sheet material carrier devices, preferably of the sheet plastic type as disclosed and claimed in US. Pat. No. 2,874,835, where a plurality of containers are held and retained together in side by side relationship for transporting purposes. Such carrier devices have been extensively used all over the world for the multipackaging of containers, usually metal beverage containers, which are commercially sold generally in multiples of six.

In removing containers from known sheet plastic carrier devices, it is often a relatively simple task to tilt or swing a container away from the package in order to obtain leverage for pulling or twisting containers out of the carrier device. In some instances, however, inexperienced consumers have had difiiculty in following the above steps for removing a container from the package. Further, the removal of containers from the package becomes more difficult where it is desired to utilize a pair of spaced plastic sheet carrier devices as disclosed and claimed; for example, in US. Pat. No. 3,086,651. Generally, a pair of spaced plastic sheet carriers is desirable where glass bottles and the like are used, since it is advantageous to maintain adjacent breakable containers such as glass containers against movement relative to each other. Where multiple carriers become necessary or desirable, the difiiculty of removing containers from the package increases.

One patentable concept which achieves the bottle to bottle separation in a container package, yet permits removal of the bottles from the package is shown in U .8. Pat. No. 3,504,790. This concept requires gripping of two adjacent bottles in order to impart a separating force on a weakened line formed in the carrier between adjacent bottles to permit the removal thereof from the package. While this concept works quite well, it may not be fully apparent to consumers as to how removal of containers may be quickly achieved.

Accordingly, it is the principal object of the present invention to provide a container package including a new and improved sheet carrier device having visible, quickopening means for removing containers from the sheet carrier device.

More specifically, it is an object of the present invention to provide a container package wherein the carrier device included therewithin is provided with exposed finger engaging tab means which can be gripped and torn free from the carrier device to remove individual containers from the package. It is important in the present invention that the carrier and tab means be so formed in combination that it is inherently easy to tear the tabs from the carrier.

These and other objects and advantages of the present invention are attained by the provision of a container package for a plurality of similarly configured containers which are arranged in substantially abutting side-by-side relationship, the container package including a carrier device for retaining and transporting containers together as a package comprising an unsupported sheet of material having a plurality of apertures therein corresponding in number, arrangement and size to the containers, the material adjacent each aperture in the carrier device being in the form of circumferentially extending bands of material, and means for removing individual containers from the package including individual finger engaging tab means integrally connected to the carrier device along a limited inner marginal area thereof surrounding each aperture, each finger engaging tab means being formed from a sec tion of material within each aperture and being arranged to extend outwardly relative to said containers for easy grasping thereof by user whereby a force exerted on the finger engaging tab means in a direction away from the carrier device causes tearing of the circumferentially extending bands of material surrounding each aperture for removing individual containers from the package. The arrangement wherein the tab means are formed to extend from the inner marginal area of the aperture for each container should be emphasized, because it is that arrangement which inherently provides tab means which may easily be torn from the carrier.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAl/VINGS FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a container package incorporating one form of carrier device which is constructed in accordance with the teachings of the present invention;

FIG. 2 is a perspective view of the container package shown in FIG. 1, and further depicting the manner in which individual containers are removed from the package;

FIG. 3 is an enlarged top plan view of the carrier device used with the container package in FIGS. 1-2;

FIG. 4 is a top plan view of a slightly modified form of carrier device within the purview of the present invention;

FIG. 5 is a reduced-in-size top plan view of another form of a carrier device which is within the scope of the present invention.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS In the discussion that is to follow, the container package will be described as including a plurality of breakable containers such as glass bottles or the like, it being understood that other types of containers such as metal, plastic, or paper cans and containers, whether of unitary or laminated construction, may be used, if desired.

As illustrated in FIGS. 1-2 of the drawings, the preferred form of container package 10 includes a pair of upper and lower carrier elements 12, 14 which are designed to engage the glass containers 16 adjacent the upper and bottom ends thereof. Where complete container-tocontainer stability is not required, a single carrier element incorporating the finger engaging tab means of the present invention can be used.

Both of the carrier elements 12, 14 are preferably of the sheet plastic type in that'they are made from a resilient, elastic and deformable unsupported sheet of thermoplastic material such as polyethylene, the qualities of which are well known. The lower carrier element 14 is arranged to embrace and grip the bottles 16 adjacent the lower ends thereof in a manner well known in the art. A lower carrier element 14 is principally used for the purpose of bottle-to-bottle stability in the container package when used in conjunction with a second carrier element such as the carrier element 12 illustrated in FIGS. 1-2 of drawing.

In the FIGS. 1-2 embodiment, the carrier element 12 is positioned beneath the crowned caps 18 associated with each container 16. Alternatively, the carrier element 12 may be positioned below the annular shoulder or enlargement 20 formed in each of the containers 16 immediately below the crowned caps 18. In either case, the carrier element 12 is arranged to be located in a position slightly below the crowned caps 18 of the containers 16 to permit a user to insert his fingers within the fingerhold carrying means 22 without the risk of damaging the users fingers by the sharp surfaces normally associated with the free ends of the crowned caps 18 or otherwise interfering with the carrying of the container package 10.

The carrier element 12 includes a plurality of apertures 24 therein which correspond in number, arrangement and size to the containers 16. Each of the apertures 24 is designed to be stretched upon the insertion of the crowned caps 18 therethrough to permit the material bands 26 surrounding each aperture 24 to underlie the crowned caps 18 or annular shoulder 20 as may be desired. In this way, it is possible for the carrier element 12 to permit the carrying of the containers 16 together as a group when the fingerhole engaging means 22 is gripped by a user.

As an important feature of the present invention, there is provided a plurality of individual finger engaging tab means 28 which are integrally connected to the carrier element 12 along a limited inner marginal area thereof surrounding each aperture 2 4. Specifically, each finger engaging tab means 28 is formed from the section of material which is within the confines of the aperture shape that is desired. In the embodiment illustrated in FIGS. 1-3 of the drawing, the finger engaging tab means 28 are connected to the material bands 26 surrounding each aperture 24 along a limited inner marginal area 30 thereof Which is located adjacent the outer areas of the carrier element 12.

With a carrier element 12 so formed, it is intended that the individual finger engaging tab means 28 are folded or bent back relative to the carrier element 12 during the assembly of the carrier element 12 to the containers 16 to permit the finger engaging tab means 28 to extend outwardly relative to the container 16 for easy grasping thereof. This is best depicted in FIGS. l-2 of the drawing where individual finger engaging tab means 28 extend downwardly and away from the carrier element 12. Because each of the individual finger engaging tab means 28 are connected to the carrier element 12 along a limited inner marginal area 30 thereof surrounding each aperture 24, it is possible for a user to exert a force on each finger engaging tab means 28 in a direction away from the carrier element 12 to permit tearing of the circumferentially extending bands of material 26 which surround each aperture 24 when it is desired to remove individual containers from the container package 10.

To enhance the tearing of the finger engaging tab means 28 into the circumferentially extending bands 26 of material surrounding each aperture 24, it may be desirable to connect the limited marginal areas 30 to weakened lines 32 as illustrated in FIG. 3 of the drawing which may be scored in the circumferentially extending band of material 26 between the inner marginal connecting areas 30 of each finger engaging tab means 28 and the outermost periphery of the carrier element 12. With such a scoring arrangement, the tab 28 Will remain with the carrier element 12 as shown in FIG. 2 rather than be completely torn free as would generally occur without the scoring.

There may be instances where it is desirable to dispose the finger engaging tab means 28 in a direction which extends upwardly and away from the carrier device 12. Where this is desired, the finger engaging tab means 28 are connected to limited inner marginal areas 30a which are located along the inner confines of each aperture 24a as illustrated in the FIG. 4 embodiment. Weakened lines 32a served to frangibly connect the individual finger engaging ta-b means 28a with the fingerhold carrying means 22a except for the intermediate pair of finger engaging tab means 28a which are frangibly connected by the weakened lines 38a to each other. Obviously, where only a four-pack container package is desired, each of the finger engaging tab means may be frangibly connected to a centrally located aperture formed in the carrier element 12.

The FIG. 5 embodiment shows that it is possible to form the finger engaging tab means from less than the entire section of material within the aperture of the carrier element. Specifically, the carrier element 12b in FIG. 5 of the drawing shows that the finger engaging tab means 28b is formed from approximately one-half of the material section which remains attached to the carrier element 12 along the limited inner marginal area 30b which partially surrounds each aperture 24b in the carrier element 12b. The remaining half-section of material within each aperture 24b may remain either attached to the carrier element 12b or be completely removed from the carrier element 12b as may be desired.

The FIG. 5 embodiment is further provided with side flange elements 34b which may be disposed in a position substantially normal to the carrier element 12b as a result of the fold line 36b formed in the carrier element 12b. Each of the side flanges can serve to provide a convenient location for printing indicia or embossments for advertising the products contained within each container 16. It will be noted that where the side flanges 34b are used, as in this embodiment, the individual finger engaging tab means 28b are designed to be connected to weakened lines 32b which traverse side flanges 34b. This is necessary in order that individual containers 1 6 may be removed from the package.

From the foregoing, it will now be appreciated that the present invention contemplates a novel quick opening means for a carrier element comprising individual finger engaging tabs which may be configured and arranged relative to the carrier element to suit the particulars that are required.

We claim:

1. A container package comprising a plurality of containers arranged in side-by-side abutting relationship, and a carrier holding said containers together, said carrier formed from a sheet of resilient deformable plastic material and having apertures therein, the marginal edge of each aperture terminating on the opposite sides of a tab formed from the material within the aperture, the circumferential extent of the marginal edge of each aperture and the material between said opposite sides of a tab being less than the circumferential dimension of said containers, said carrier being mounted on said containers with the marginal edge of each aperture and the material between said opposite sides of a tab being stretched to circumferentially encircle and resiliently grip one of said containers with the material about each aperture assuming a frusto-conical shape, and each tab being positioned between the surface of a container and said material about each aperture. 4

2. A container package as defined in claim 1, and finger gripping apertures in said carrier for transporting said package.

3. A container package as defined in claim 1, and a weakened line formed in said carrier substantially between one of said opposite sides of each of said tabs and the outer marginal edge of said carrier.

4. A container package as defined in claim 1, wherein said containers comprise bottles having reduced neck portions, said carrier being mounted on said bottles with the marginal edge of each aperture and the material between said opposite sides of a tab being stretched to circumferentially encircle and resiliently grip the reduced neck portion of one of said bottles with the material about each aperture assuming a frusto-conical shape and positioned substantially against the neck portion of the bottle, and each tab being downwardly directed relative to said bottles and positioned between the neck portion of the bottles and said material about each aperture.

5. A carrier for the upper reduced neck portions of a plurality of bottles arranged in two side-by-side rows, said carrier being formed from a sheet of resilient deformable plastic material, said sheet material being provided with two rows of apertures therethrough, the marginal edge of each aperture terminating on the opposite sides of a tab formed from the material within the aperture, the circumferential extent of the marginal edge and the material between said opposite sides of a tab being less than the circumferential dimension of the neck portion of the bottles intended to be associated therewith, whereby stretching of the marginal edge of each aperture and the portions of said sheet material, whereby said tabs are disposed outwardly of said two rows of bottles when said carrier is mounted on two rows of bottles.

References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,997,169 8/1961 Poupitch 206-65 C 3,404,912 10/1968 Watts 206-65 C X 3,325,004 6/ 19-67 Wanderer 206-65 E 2,899,051 8/1959 Barnby 206-65 E 3,073,644 1/1963 Baker et al 20665 E X 3,341,245 9/1967 Wolford 206 65 C X LEONARD SUMMER, Primary Examiner U.S. Cl. X.R. 294-872

Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3946862 *Jul 16, 1974Mar 30, 1976Illinois Tool Works Inc.Container package
US4064989 *Jul 9, 1976Dec 27, 1977Illinois Tool Works Inc.Shipping carton construction
US4249766 *Apr 13, 1979Feb 10, 1981Gerald EricksonBottle separating and connecting band
US4390095 *Feb 23, 1981Jun 28, 1983Grip-Pak, Inc.Lay flat tube multi-packaging device for containers
US4460084 *Sep 13, 1982Jul 17, 1984Owens-Illinois, Inc.Plural container package
US4465180 *Jul 29, 1982Aug 14, 1984Illinois Tool Works Inc.Multi-package and multi-packaging device
US4497325 *Jul 15, 1982Feb 5, 1985Wedel Victor JUltrasound needle, biopsy instrument or catheter guide
US4513860 *Sep 9, 1983Apr 30, 1985Owens-Illinois, Inc.Bottle carrier
US4544194 *Jun 11, 1984Oct 1, 1985Owens-Illinois, Inc.Plural bottle carrier
US4546876 *Feb 4, 1985Oct 15, 1985Owens-Illinois, Inc.Bottle carrier
US4550824 *Nov 1, 1984Nov 5, 1985Owens-Illinois, Inc.Bottle carrier
US4752001 *Feb 18, 1987Jun 21, 1988Illinois Tool Works Inc.Proof of purchase detachable tab
US4911289 *Apr 17, 1989Mar 27, 1990Bird Stanford WCarrier for beverage bottles
US4925020 *Jul 25, 1989May 15, 1990Gordon Joan EEnvironmentally sound carrier package
US5016750 *Nov 16, 1989May 21, 1991Gordon Joan EEnvironmentally sound carrier package
US5020661 *Jun 14, 1990Jun 4, 1991Illinois Tool Works Inc.Carrier stock with tear-open tabs
US5115910 *May 13, 1991May 26, 1992Illinois Tool Works Inc.Carrier stock with tear-open band segments
US5139137 *Apr 2, 1991Aug 18, 1992Illinois Tool Works, Inc.Carrier stock with tear-open tabs
US5174441 *May 22, 1992Dec 29, 1992Illinois Tool Works Inc.Tear-open container carrier
US5193673 *Apr 12, 1991Mar 16, 1993Thomas RathboneEnvironmentally safe holder device
US5255780 *Nov 17, 1992Oct 26, 1993Illinois Tool Works Inc.Carrier stock with tear-open tabs
US5261530 *Mar 23, 1992Nov 16, 1993Illinois Tool Works Inc.Carrier stock with tear-open tabs
US6896129Mar 25, 2003May 24, 2005Illinois Tool Works Inc.Banded container package with opening feature
US6923314Nov 21, 2002Aug 2, 2005Illinois Tool Works Inc.Banded container package with opening feature
US7458458Dec 23, 2004Dec 2, 2008Illinois Tool Works Inc.Sleeved container package with opening feature
US20040055905 *Sep 20, 2002Mar 25, 2004Marco Leslie S.Container package with carrier and surrounding sleeve
US20040055906 *Nov 21, 2002Mar 25, 2004Marco Leslie S.Banded container package with opening feature
US20050109640 *Dec 23, 2004May 26, 2005Marco Leslie S.Sleeved container package with opening feature
US20090045081 *Feb 9, 2007Feb 19, 2009Hamann David LCarrier container for beverage bottles
US20090114408 *Oct 31, 2008May 7, 2009Craig RobertsMethod and apparatus for vertical preloading using containers for fluid
Classifications
U.S. Classification206/150, 294/87.2
International ClassificationB65D71/50
Cooperative ClassificationB65D71/506, B65D71/504
European ClassificationB65D71/50D2, B65D71/50D