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Publication numberUS3744665 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJul 10, 1973
Filing dateJun 14, 1971
Priority dateJun 14, 1971
Publication numberUS 3744665 A, US 3744665A, US-A-3744665, US3744665 A, US3744665A
InventorsV Spoto
Original AssigneeV Spoto
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Combination vial and test tube rack
US 3744665 A
Abstract  available in
Images(1)
Previous page
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent 1 11 1 Spoto 1451 July 10, 1973 [54] COMBINATION VIAL AND TEST TUBE 986,243 3/ 1965 Great Britain 211/74 RACK P E G E rimary xaminereorge .Lowrance [76] Inventor 22p g'g 36th Assistant Examiner-Stephen Marcus a Attorney-Clarence A. OBrien and Harvey B. [22] Filed: June 14, 1971 Jacobson [21] Appl. No.: 152,686 [57] ABSTRACT A portable multipurpose box-type compartmental rack [52] US. Cl.....; 220/21, 211/76, 217/19, for chemistry assaying in industrial laboratories emt 220/22 6 bodying self-contained facilities for orderly racking b ttl typ i l d t t t b It i d f h i g [58] new of Search 220/20, 221 controls, standards and reagents and lends itself for use 220M161 BIG 6; 217/18 56; 211/74 in an incubated water bath, when necessary-The 76; 23/292; 294/872 loaded rack can stand upright in an upside-down position when used outside of a water bath. The compart- [56] s n s C'ted ments and selectively applicable and removable cover- UNITED STATES PATENTS ing panels provide a rack which can accommodate up 3,245,573 4/1966 Bakos 220/21 to four different size vials- Then, t rack when 1,892,170 12/1932 Sneed, Jr. 217/21 properly used constitutes a holder for test tubes and, to 3,643,812 2/1972 Mander et a1. 220/21 achieve this result; the bottom of each compartment is FOREIGN T 0R APPLICATIONS provided with concave centrally apertured seating de 1,522,057 4/1968 France 220/21 press'ons 709,473 6/1966 Italy 220/21 9 Claims, 6 Drawing Figures f' r T w T T 1 'J 60 24 I r u L Y I 1 l w 4 66 we 42 f 1 l 30 PAYENHD 101973 3. 744.665

Victor 7.' Spam Isl I Wm (am Wave; 3m 7 COMBINATION VIAL AND TEST TUBE RACK This invention relates to certain new and useful im provements in portable box-type compartmental and cellular article racks and has to do, more particularly, with a multipurpose vial and test tube rack which has been expressly constructed for expedient chemistry assaying in industrial laboratories and which, because of its unique construction, saves valuable time, space and labor and insures more efficacious mixing consistency of the contained solutions.

Under prevailing practice, vials used for controls, standards, reagents and the like are sequentially lined up and'pipettes drained into them to provide a predetermined amount after which they are inverted one by one. A time clock is then set. At the end of the alloted time these vials are then returned to their initial upright positions and the clock is reset. They are then manually mixed one by one until all of the contents are in solution.

An object of the present invention is to simplify the currently followed tedious and exasperating steps. Where, for example, prior racks can accommodate and house vials of one size only, the innovation herein revealed can be acceptably used with requisite nicety to house 5 ml., ml., 25 ml., and 50 ml. volume vials and also serves to rack test tubes.

The reader, if conversant with the over-all problem and state of the art to which the invention relates is aware that portable boxes, receivers and carriers for racking containers of various types and wherein the receptacle portion is partitioned to provide individual compartments for individual articles are known. For example it can be assumed, broadly stated, that the thermometer rack covered in US. Pat. No. l,474,89l, granted to Mary A. Burt, et al., is exemplary but nonanalogous art. Secondly, the Leo Katz US. Pat. No. 2,759,337, which relates to containers for food and drink and which is used for carrying and cooling of articles for transporting, is of general reference value. Also, and because it is somewhat closer as a citation, the reader may refer to the article carrier of Jack Worthington, U.S. Pat. No. 3,279,648, wherein the bottom wall is provided with apertured well-like bottle seats. However, it is not the purpose here to analyze and explicity compare the present invention with the prior reference patents but merely to call attention to those mentioned for background purposes.

Briefly, the concept herein disclosed with a view toward acceptably solving the problem pertains, generally stated, to a portable invertible multipurpose rack characterized by coordinating and oriented facilities for orderly and accessibly confining a plurality of readily insertablc and removable solution-mixing vials (containers, test tubes or the like) and comprising an open-top box-like receiver. The receptacle portion of the receiver is provided with marginally encompassed interconnected partitions which are arranged in coordinating relationship to define individual open-top article receiving and positioning cells or compartments. These compartments function to accommodate a plurality of containers which are individually pocketed in their respectively cooperable compartments. Readily applicable and removable retainer means is cooperable with and functions for maintaing the containers in given (normally upright) positions. This retainer means also permits the rack to be bodily vials and thus turned upside-down. The containers when thus turned upside down are effectually supported when used in incubated water bath, or alternatively, used outside of the water bath. The compartments are of a size that they lend themselves to feasible use for retentively racking vials of different sizes which are used for controls, standards, reagents and the like.

More specifically, the compartments are of a predetermined size in plan and depth that they lend themselves to practical and safe use for retentively racking vials of different sizes such as for example 5 ml., 10 ml., 25 ml., and 50 ml. volume vials and, in addition, function to rack test tubes of varying sizes.

These together with other objects and advantages which will become subsequently apparent reside in the details of construction and operation as more fully hereinafter described and claimed, reference being bad to the accompanying drawings forming a part hereof, wherein like numerals refer to like parts throughout, and in which:

FIG. 1 is a top plan view of a combination vial and test tube rack constructed in accordance with the principles of the present invention and which is shown as made of transparent material with certain component parts showing through other connecting components and wherein the vials have been omitted for clearness of presentation.

FIG. 2 is a fragmentary detail section showing the small neck-equipped or bottle-like vials (5 ml.) with the stopper-equipped necks extending up through the holes in the first panel and with the second panel covering the stoppers to permit inversion (not shown), taken on the plane of the section line 2-2 of FIG. 1.

FIG. 2A is a view at the right similar to FIG. 2 and which shows basically the same parts with the first or bottom panel omitted and with the second retaining panel fitted into a slot provided therefor.

FIG. 3 is a view taken approximately on the plane of the vertical section line 33 of FIG. 2 looking in the direction of the indicating arrows. 7

FIG. 4 is a fragmentary perspective view showing the notched panel elevated and the cooperating retaining latch in an open position.

And FIG. 5 is a fragmentary view in section and elevation similar to FIG. 3 and showing how the rack can be used to assemble and support test tubes.

With reference now to the views, singly and collectively, the aforementioned box or box-like receiver, is denoted by the numeral 6. This receiver is preferably made of transparent plastic material and comprises a flat self-standing horizontal bottom wall 8, a pair of opposed parallel upstanding longitudinal side walls 10 and a pair of complemental transverse end walls 12. The upper free edges (FIG. 4) of the side walls are denoted at 14. It is significant to note that the upper half portion of each end wall is provided with an upstanding extension which is denoted at 16. These extensions have their upper terminal edges 18 disposed in a common plane as perhaps best brought out in FIGS. 2 and 2A. Each extension is provided with a plurality of horizontal vertically spaced correspondingly performing slots. The lowermost slot is denoted at 20 (FIGS. 2, 3 and 5), the uppermost slot at 22 and the intervening slot at 24. The receptacle portion of the box or receiver is provided with interconnected longitudinal and transverse partitions 26 and 28 respectively which coaet in defining the individual compartments for the insertable and removable containers. The upper edges of the partitions are flush with each other and also with the upper edges 14 of the side walls 10.

Passing over the function of the slotted extensions 16 at this point, attention is now directed to what is here designated as a first horizontal optionally usable panel 30. This panel is generally rectangular in plan and has notched transverse end portions 32. The notched end portions define projecting longitudinal flanges 34. These notched end portions are guidingly fitted over the extensions or end walls 16 and the flanges 34 rest on the upper edges 14 of the side walls 10. Panel 30 is provided with openings or holes 36 which are lined up with the individual compartments and these holes serve to accommodatingly receive the stopper-closed neck portions of the containers. For example in FIG. 2 the small ml. containers are referred to as vials and are denoted at 38. It follows that the neck portions 40 are lined up with and extend into the holes or openings 36, the stoppers being denoted at 42. The substantially flat bottom portions of these small vials are retained in place on the interior surface of the bottom wall 8. In this connection it will be seen that the bottom wall at the lower portion of each compartment is provided with circular concave depressions 44 each of which has an orifice 46 centrally therein. These concave depressions provide seats for the lower convex ends of optionally usable test tubes 48 as shown for example in FIG. 5. Each depression 44 has its marginal portion surrounded by an upstanding ring-like rib 48 which provides a seating retainer for the bottom portion of the vial as shown at the left in FIG. 2. Thus, the apertured depressions and accompanying rings provide proper seating and retaining facilities for the insertable and removable containers. In this presentation it will be seen in FIG. 2 that the various sized vials (four sizes illustrated) are properly accommodated and for best results it has been found that the first panel 30 should be held down in the position shown and this is accomplished by using substantially U-shaped retaining latches such as are denoted at 50 in FIG. 4. The latches are pivotally mounted at 52 and positioned so that the jaw portions swing up over the flanges 34 as best shown in FIG. 3. Thus by latching down the plate 30 this plate assists in properly positioning and retaining the small 5 ml. vials as illustrated at the left in FIG. 2. Panel 30 can be and is used in conjunction with 5 ml. and ml. vials but is not intended to be used for 25 ml. or 50 ml. vials. When, however, it is desired to provide support for the test tubes 48 a second pane (not detailed) but illustrated at 54 in FIG. 5 can be brought into play. The use of the rack for supporting test tubes is significant but incidental compared with the use of a single multipurpose rack for the vials of different sizes, that is, in diam eter and height.

Referring again to the slots 20, 22 and 24 it will be seen that these slots serve to accommodate the insertable and removable second horizontal panel which is denoted for example at 56 in FIG. 2 in particular. This panel has right hand end portions 58 and left hand end portions 60. The right hand end portions protrude beyond the slotted extension and are provided with attached ribs 62 which constitute limit stop abutments and which facilitate in inserting the left hand end portions 60 through the slots, passing the panel over the stopper-equipped vials (FIG. 2A) and then passing the left hand ends through the slots provided therefor and securing the same removably in place. To the ends desired, each end portion 60 is provided with a keeper hole 64 to accommodate an insertable and removable T-shaped keeper or retainer 66.

It is believed that by taking into account the use of the first apertured panels 30 (FIGS. 2 and 3) and the optional use of the second insertable and removable panel 56 it will be clear that the rack serves primarily for the purpose of housing controls, standards, reagents and test tubes and for the purpose of using the rack in incubated water baths when necessary for use in an industrial laboratory.

The insertable and removable and sliding panel 56 is sometimes referred to as a sliding slab and of course prevents the vials from floating to the surface when immersed in a water bath. When used outside of a water bath, as it would be most commonly used, the entire rack is inverted and the slab prevents the vials from falling out. Prior art adaptations cannot be inverted without loss of the containers plus the fact that the rack cannot ordinarily stand upright in an upside-down position when used outside of a water bath. It follows that the extended slotted portions 16 of the end walls serve as supporting legs when the rack is in the upside-down position.

It is submitted that a careful consideration of the views of the drawings, singly and collectively will enable the reader to understand the simplicity of construction of the overall rack and the self-contained features which enable the user to accomplish the improved result desired. Accordingly, a more extended description is deemed to be unnecessary.

The foregoing is considered as illustrative only of the principles of the invention. Further, since numerous modifications and changes will readily occur to those skilled in the art, it is not desired to limit the invention to the exact construction and operation shown and described, and accordingly all suitable modifications and equivalents may be resorted to, falling within the scope of the invention.

What is claimed as new is as follows:

1. A portable, invertible, multipurpose rack for orderly and systematically racking a plurality of solution containing and mixing bottle-type vials of different sizes ranging, for example, from 5 ml. to 50 ml. volume vials, comprising a box embodying a flat self-standing bottom wall, longitudinal side walls having coplanar upper lengthwise edges, and transverse end walls hav ing like spaced parallel extensions having upper coplanar edges, said extensions constituting a pair of support legs when said rack is inverted and turned upside-down for a predetermined procedural chemistry assaying purpose, the receptacle portion of said box having interiorly fixed interconnected partitions defining rows of individual open top vial receiving and positioning compartments, a readily applicable and removable first panel having notched ends with are retentively but releasably connected with coacting portions of the respectively cooperable end wall extensions and providing longitudinal flanges resting atop and also overhanging said longitudinal side walls, said first panel having holes therein which are distributively aligned with the respectively cooperable compartments and which permit the usual stopper-closed neck portions of said vials to project through and beyond said holes, and readily accessible retaining latches pivotally mounted on upper portions of said side walls, said latches being manually actuable and retentively but releasably engageable with coacting portions of said flanges in a manner to prevent (1) displacement of said first panel from its functioning position and (2) displacement of the vials from their pocketing compartments.

2. The rack defined in and according to claim 1, and wherein that portion of the bottom wall which is aligned with each compartment is provided with an oriented and coordinating concave well-like depression which is centrally apertured for circulation of bath water, that is, when the vial loaded rack is immersed in a prescribed time-controlled water bath.

3. The rack defined in and according to claim 1, and wherein that portion of the bottom wall which is aligned with each compartment is provided with an oriented and coordinating concave well-like depression which is centrally apertured for circulation of bath water, that is, when the vial-loaded-rack is immersed in a prescribed time-controlled water bath, and wherein the interior surface of said bottom wall is provided with upstanding ring-like ribs concentrically encircling the respective depressions and serving as positioning holders for bottom portions of said vials.

4. The rack defined in and according to claim 1, and, in combination, a second panel constituting a retaining slab, said extensions having selectively usable keeper slots through which end portions of said second panel are adapted to be inserted and passed, said second panel when properly located in selected slots serving to overlie the stopper-equipped necks of vials of different sizes (small, large and in-between) in a manner to prevent displacement of those vials which are accommodatingly racked when the rack is inverted and thus turned upside-down.

5. The rack defined in and according to claim 4, and wherein said second panel is provided at one transverse end portion with limit-stop abutment means and at the other transverse end with a keeper hole and an applicable and removable T-shaped keeper for retentive but releasable cooperation with said keeper slots, said slots being paired, horizontally disposed, and vertically spaced.

6. The rack defined in and according to claim 4, and wherein the interior surface of that portion of said bottom wall which is aligned with each compartment is provided with a coordinating concave well-like depression, said depression being apertured for circulatory passage of bath water when, for example, the loaded rack is immersed in a prescribed time-controlled bath water.

7. The rack defined in and according to claim 4, and wherein the interior surface of that portion of the bottom wall aligned with each compartment is provided with an oriented concave well-like depression aper tured for passage of bath water, and wherein said interior surface is provided with integral upstanding ringlike ribs concentrically encircling the respective depressions.

8. A portable, invertible, multipurpose rack for systematically racking a plurality of solution containing and mixing bottle-type vials of different sizes comprising a box embodying a flat self-standing bottom wall, marginally attached longitudinal side walls having coplanar upper lengthwise edges, and transverse end walls disposed between and connecting the end portions of said side walls, said end walls having spaced parallel correspondingly constructed upstanding extensions providing a pair of complemental support legs for said box when it is intentionally turned upside down, said extensions having paired, horizontally disposed, vertically spaced and cooperatively aligned selectively usable keeper slots, the receptacle portion of said box having coacting interconnected partitions defining individual open-top receiving and positioning compartments, a readily applicable and removable first horizontal panel having transverse ends abutting and releasably but retentively connected with respectively cooperable transverse end walls and having longitudinal edge positions resting and removably seated atop the coordinating lengthwise edges of said longitudinal side walls, said first panel having holes distributively aligned with the respectively cooperable compartments, said holes permitting the usual stopper-closed neck portions of said vials to project upwardly through and beyond the holes, readily accessible retainers mounted on exterior surfaces of said side walls and normally serving to retain said first panel in its serviceable and functioning position, and a complemental second panel constituting a retaining slab and having opposite end portions passing through adjacent slots of a selected pair of said slots, said second panel being adapted to overlie the stopper-equipped necks of vials of different sizes in a manner to prevent displacement of already racked vials when said rack has been intentionally turned upside down.

9. The rack defined in and according to claim 8 and wherein said second panel is provided at one transverse end portion with limit-stop abutment means and is provided at an opposite end with readily applicable and removable keeper means cooperable with an adjacent ex terior surface of the coacting extension whereby to retain said second panel in operating positions relative to the slotted extensions.

Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
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US8357538Oct 9, 2009Jan 22, 2013Qiagen Gaithersburg, Inc.Automated assay and system
US8703492Oct 9, 2009Apr 22, 2014Qiagen Gaithersburg, Inc.Open platform hybrid manual-automated sample processing system
US8877507Oct 9, 2009Nov 4, 2014Qiagen Gaithersburg, Inc.Ensuring sample adequacy using turbidity light scattering techniques
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US20040144740 *Jan 15, 2004Jul 29, 2004Przygoda George M.Bottle display safe
US20050029914 *Aug 5, 2003Feb 10, 2005Zhenming WangHighly flexible and accessible freezer drawer rack
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WO2010056884A1 *Nov 12, 2009May 20, 2010QiagenSample rack system
Classifications
U.S. Classification220/519, 220/516, 217/19, 220/514, 211/76, 220/DIG.600
International ClassificationB01L9/06
Cooperative ClassificationY10S220/06, B01L9/06
European ClassificationB01L9/06