US 3782579 A
A collapsible receptacle having the lower end of the walls hingedly connected with the base frame by hinge bolts inserted into slot-like oblong holes which are open at the upper end and having a length greater than the cross-sectional size of the hinge bolt. A device is associated with the upper end opening for blocking or permitting removal of the hinge bolt from the oblong hole.
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent 1191 Zarges Jan. 1,1974
[5 COLLAPSIBLE RECEPTACLE 3,122,258 2/1964 Shile 220/6  Inventor wanher zarges 3,628,683 12/1971 Friedrich 220/6 Maria-Antonien-Weg 6, FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS Mumau/obb', Germany 1,144,178 2/1963 Germany 220/6 p 2 1,280,150 l0/l968 Germany 220/6  Appl' 184502 Primary ExaminerGeorge Ej Lowrance Attorney-Craig, Antonelli & Hill  Foreign Application Priority Data Oct. 1, 1970 Germany P 20 48 382.3  ABSTRACT A collapsible receptacle having the lower end of the I CCll 2201612532? walls g y connected with the base frame y hinge  Fieid "5 F 6 bolts inserted into slot-like oblong holes which are open at the upper end and having a length greater  References cued than the cross-sectional size of the hinge bolt. A device is associated with the upper end opening for UNITED STATES PATENTS blocking or permitting removal of the hinge bolt from 2,801,761 8/1967 Pigatti; 220/7 the oblong hole 3,516,592 6/1970 Freidrich 2,799,423 7/1957 Kaye 220/7 22 Claims, 11 Drawing Figures 5 L a J 1/11 2 1/11 fig ll/ /M:
PAIEMEW mm sum 2 0r FIG. 5
INVENTOR WALTHE ZARGES CeoJa. MLOMQQi 4, H-(QQ AT ORNEYS I PAIEHTEU W4 3,782,579
' sum 3 or 3 FIG;
INVEN TOR WALT'HER .ZARGE5 ATTORNEYS COLLAPSIBLE RECEPTACLE The invention relates to a collapsible receptacle with or without a lid, in which the lower end of the walls is hingedly connected with the base frame via bolts introduced into holes.
Receptacles with the above or other permanently hinged connections between the walls and the base frame are of advantage in that they can be extremely easily assembled by simply swinging up the individual walls and subsequently securing them together. As a rule with such receptacles no loose, i.e., losable parts are required for the individual bolting devices, which is particularly important in the empty transportation of such recpetacles. However these receptacles are disadvantageous in as much as the individual walls must from a design standpoint have different dimensions, and further in that when collapsing them a particular sequence must be observed for the individual walls. If unavoidably damage occurs to the individual walls during use of such receptacles then generally the user cannot himselfreplace such damaged walls so that the receptacle has to be sent for repair which necessitates time and money-consuming labour. The repair workshop which carries out the work has to have a correspondingly large spares store due to the differing dimensions of the individual walls. 7
Collapsible receptacles with or without a lid are also known wherein all parts are loose. These loose parts are assembled and held together in this type of collapsible receptacle by means of pins, clips or suitable locks. It is advantageous with such receptacles for at least two of the walls to be identical, optionally all four walls can be identical namely in the case of square receptacles. On assembling such receptacles no special sequence has to be adhered to for the individual walls and if in use damage occurs to the walls of these receptacles then they can be replaced in a very simple manner. However as against these advantages there is the disadvantage compared with the simple swinging up of the walls of receptacles of the first-indicated type of a much more complicated joining together of the individual loose parts which as such can easily be lost during the empty transportation of these receptacles. In addition damage easily occurs to the means for joining together the individual parts because during use of the receptacles these are exposed.
In view of the above-indicated comments the object of the invention is to provide a collapsible receptacle with or without a lid which as far as possible combines the advantages of the two above-indicated constructional principles of such receptacles, whilst avoiding as far as possible the disadvantages linked therewith.
To solve this problem starting with a collapsible receptacle with or without a lid of the above-indicated type it is proposedaccording to the invention for each hole associated with a hinge bolt to be in the form of a slot-like oblong hole open at its upper end, which relative to the cross-sectional size of the hinge bolt has a greater length and wherein the upper opening end thereof is associated with a device which can as desired block or permit the removal of the hinge bolt from this oblong hole. For assembly purposes such a receptacle only needs the individual walls to be swung up no particular sequence needing to be maintained for the swinging up purposes. If the individual hinge bolts are located at the lower ends of the walls and the associated oblong holes in the base frame, then at least two and possibly all four walls can have the same dimensions. If these walls are damaged then their replacement is simple because it is merely necessary to operate the devices blocking the removal of the hinge bolts from their oblong holes in order to permit the removal of the hinge bolts of a particular wall from their oblong holes.
As devices which optionally prevent or permit the removal of the individual hinge bolts from their particular oblong hole, numerous alternatives are proposed within the scope of the individual design features of the present invention. For example according to the invention it is possible for the opening at the upper end of each oblong hole to be blocked by a split pin, dowel pin bolt, screw or wedge against the removal of the associated hinge bolt for normal use of the receptacle. if a damaged wall is to be replaced it is then only necessary to remove the corresponding member so that such a wall can be removed without any difficulty.
It is alternatively possible for the upper end of each oblong hole to be constricted to a smaller opening width relative to the cross-sectional size of the asso ciated joint bolt and to make this constriction removable or elastically enlargeable. Within the scope of this alternative feature it is possible, for example, to provide at least one longitudinal wall of each oblong hole in the region of its upper end with a bead-like elastically resilient projection which constricts the opening width, below which the longitudinal wall is preferably provided with a reduced wall thickness as compared with the remaining wall and the other facing longitudinal wall of the oblong hole. Such a bead-like projection prevents, during normal operation of the receptacle, a removal of the associated hinge bolt from its longitudinal hole. If in this case a wall has to be replaced because of damage then only sufficient force need be applied to the wall to remove the constriction at the upper opening end of a longitudinal hole brought about by the bead-like projection.
It is also possible to provide at least in one rigid longitudinal wall of each oblong hole in the area of its upper opening end an elastic or spring-pretensioned bolt, ball or the like for constricting the oblong hole to a smaller opening width.
The oblong holes which in each case serve to receive a hinge bolt need not necessarily be open at the upper end in their longitudinal axis, in fact the opening can also be provided in the longitudinal wall of the oblong holes on the inside of the receptacle. Such an arrangement requires an inclined position to remove the walls.
Within the scope of the various solutions according to the invention for solving the above-indicated problem another solution is of interest according to which each opening associated with a hinge bolt is made in the form of a slot-lilte oblong hole open at its upper end which is longer than the cross-sectional size of the joint bolt, whereby unlike in the solutions indicated hereinbefore each hinge bolt is non-circular. Such a noncircular design of the hinge bolts prevents during normal operation of the receptacle an unwanted removal of the hinge bolts from their oblong holes. It is necessary to replace a wall due to damage then such a wall need only be brought into a particular inclined position wherein the diametral small dimension of the hinge bolt passes unhindered through the upper ends of the associated oblong holes adapted as regards their opening width. In addition with such an embodiment of the receptacle with the above-indicated devices similar devices can be provided which optionally permit and block a removal of a hinge bolt from its oblong hole.
For a receptacle of the herinbefore indicated type another solution for the above problem is for each opening associated with a hinge bolt to be in the form of a slit-like oblong hole, and each hinge bolt is fixed detachably to its wall. With this embodiment then only the two hinge bolts of one wall must be detached therefrom when a replacement becomes necessary. A preferred design feature of such a receptacle according to the invention is considered to be that each slit-like oblong hole has at its upper end an opening in its longitudinal wall on the outside of the receptacle adapted to the cross-sectional size of the associated hinge bolt and that the hinge bolt is screwed to its wall. Each hinge bolt is preferably provided with a thread at the end for screwing to the walls. On replacing a wall it is only necessary to bring the wall into its upper fastening position of its hinge bolts, then the bolts can be unscrewed by means of a screwdriver via the openings in the longitudinal walls of the oblong holes on the outside of the receptacle whereby the wall is released. The assembly takes place in reverse sequence.
To prevent an undesired detachment of the hinged connections when the receptacles are assembled further safety mechanisms can be provided. Thus for example on the base frame and on the individual walls additional complementary projections and recesses can be provided which engage in one another with the receptacle walls assembled.
As the lower edges of the walls are only secured by the hinge bolts introduced into the oblong holes the base frame, inside the receptacle, should have spaced or linear members cooperating with the assembled walls. To prevent, particularly in the case of larger receptacles, a tilting of the walls when swung up or down in the case when the hinge bolts are introduced into their oblong holes with a greater or smaller tolerance, according to another design feature of the invention the individual walls are made necessarily parallel, which is preferably brought about by each wall at its lower end having two pinions at the ends of a common rotary shaft, which cooperate respectively with a rack which isparallel to the oblong holes. Such a compulsory parallel guiding of the individual walls prevents an undesired removal of the hinge bolts from their oblong holes in the alternately overlapping state of the walls when flapped down.
The invention will be more closely described hereinafter with reference to various embodiments by way of example schematically shown in the drawings. There show:
FIG. I is a perspective of a complete collapsible receptacle according to the invention,
FIG. 2 is a section through the receptacle according to FIG. I along the line II to II,
FIG. 3 is a partial section through the receptacle according to FIGS. 1 and 2 in the direction of the arrow III in FIG. 2. in order to illustrate a possible embodiment of a hinged joint according to the invention for the individual walls,
FIG. 4 is a sectional representation corresponding to FIG. 3 illustrating the disassembly of a receptacle wall,
FIG. 5 is a sectional representation also corresponding to FIG. 3 illustrating an alternative embodiment,
FIG. 6 is a sectional representation also corresponding to FIG. 3 showing a third embodiment according to the invention,
FIG. 7 is a partial section along the line VII to VII of FIG. 2,
FIG. 8 is a partial section corresponding to FIG. 3 illustrating a further embodiment according to the invention,
FIG. 9 is another partial section corresponding to FIG. 3 illustrating a fifth embodiment according to the invention,
FIGS. 10 and 11 show in two partial sections the representation of a device for the compulsory parallel guiding of the walls.
The complete container shown in perspective in FIG. 1 has a base frame 1, which fixes the base 2. Each of the walls 3 is at its lower end provided with two laterally arranged hinge bolts 4,.w hich in each case engage in a slot-like oblong hole 5.
In the case of the embodiment according to FIGS. 3 and 4 this oblong hole 5 is open at its upper end at 6. One longitudinal wall is provided with a bead-like projection 7, which constricts this opening 6 to an opening width which is smaller than the circular cross-section of the hinge bolt 4. Below this projection 7 this longitudinal wall of the oblong hole 5 is of reduced thickness at 8. The bead-like projection 7 normally prevents a removal of the hinge bolt 4 but if tension is exerted on the wall 3 in the direction of the arrow 9 then the bolt 4 in the dotted-line position 4' in FIG. 3 presses the beadlike projection 7 into the dotted-line position 7' so that it can be removed from the oblong hole 5. FIG. 4 shows another possibility of detaching a wall 3 without the use of any tool. This shows the wall 3' placed in an inclined position with a spacer 10 placed beneath it so that on exerting pressure in the direction of the arrow 11 a lever arm is provided which facilitates the elastic forcing aside of the bead-like projection 7 into the position 7 by the hinge bolt in the position 4' assumed by the same.
In the embodiment shown in FIG. 5 the opening 6' is at the upper end of the oblong hole 5 in the inner longitudinal wall of the receptacle, the oblong hole 5 is therefore bounded upwardly by a cross bar 12. The latter has at its free end a bead-like projection 13, which here again takes over the task of constricting the opening 6' to an opening width which is smaller than the cross-section of the hinge bolt 4. For removal of the longitudinal wall 3 it is necessary to move it into the inclined position 3" and then to exert tension in the direction of the arrow 14 so that the hinge bolt assuming the position 4" can elastically move aside the projection 13 into position 13' shown by the dotted lines.
The embodiment of FIG. 6 corresponds essentially to that of FIG. 5 whereby here however for the bar 12 at the upper end of the oblong hole 5 a rigid arrangement is chosen. In the free end of this bar 12' is introduced a bolt 15 which is itself elastic the free end of which here again constricts the opening 6" to an opening width which is smaller than the cross-section of the hinge bolt 4. If the wall 3' is moved into the inclined position 3" according to FIG. 5 and tension is exerted on the inclined wall in the direction of arrow 14 then the bolt 15 is elastically deformed so that the constriction of the opening 6 is removed and consequently the hinge bolt 4 can move out of the oblong hole 5.
The sectional representation of FIG. 7 shows a securing mechanism for the assembled wall 3 by means of complementary projections 16 and recesses 17 on the base frame 1 and the wall, said members engaging in one another when the wall is assembled. 18 is a stop provided within the receptacle on the base frame which makes point or linear contact with the assembled wall.
The embodiment of H6. 8 as in the embodiment of FIGS. 5 and b has a slot-like oblong hole 5 whereof the inner longitudinal wall of the receptacle has at the upper end an opening 6", which is constricted to an opening width corresponding to the diametral minor dimension a of the associated noncircular hinge bolt 4' individual oblong holes a device which as in the case of the described embodiments optionally permits or prevents a removal of the hinge bolt from the oblong holes.
FIG. 9 shows an embodiment of the receptacle according to the invention wherein the hinge bolts 4 are screwed into the walls by means of an end thread 19. The oblong holes 5 provided in this embodiment have at their upper end in their outer longitudinal wall of the receptacle an opening 20 adapted to the cross-sectional size of the associated hinge bolts d by means of which the hinge bolt 4" in the raised state of the walls 3, wherein the hinge bolts are in the position showed in dotted lines in FIG. 9, a screwdriver can be brought into operative connection in order to unscrew the hinge bolts from the raised wall so that the latter is ready for replacement in the case of damage. Other embodiments are naturally also possible for such a detachable fixing of the hinge bolts to the receptacle walls.
FIGS. ill and 111 finally show a preferred detail particularly for larger receptacles which ensures that the walls are necessarily parallel. At the lower end of each wall is positioned a rotatable shaft 21 on each of the two ends of which is fixed a pinion 22. The shaft 2t can simultaneously also form with its ends the hinge bolts 4" of a wall 3. Each pinion 22 meshes with a rack 23 parallel to the individual oblong holes 5, said rack being preferably in one piece with the base frame. Otherwise the embodiment of lFlGS. MB and 11 is the same as that of lFllG. 5.
in all the described embodiments of the invention the oblong holes need not necessarily be in the base frame, instead corner brackets can be mounted at the lower corners of the receptacle which are then positively connected with the base frame.
l. A foldable container comprising: a base member, a frame member disposed along edge portion of said base member, a plurality of walls disposed along edge portions of said base member forming the respective sides of the container, pin means disposed substantially in the lower end of said walls along the side edges thereof for pivotally supporting said walls, said frame member being provided along at least portions thereof with first and second horizontally spaced walls defining therebetween oblong slots for receiving said pin means, said oblong slots being slightly greater in width than the crosssectional size of said pin means, said first and second walls having a vertical height which is at least sufficient to permit vertical displacement of said pin means when said walls are superimposed upon folding of the container, and means disposed in the upper region of each of said oblong slots for releasably securing said pin means therein.
2. A foldable container according to claim ll, wherein said oblong slots are open at its upper end and said pin means include hinge bolts having non-circular cross sections with the minor diameter of said hinge bolts at least equal to the width of opening of the upper end of said oblong slots.
3. A foldable container according to claim l wherein said means for releasable securing said pin means includes at least one of a split pin, a bolt, a screw, and a wedge.
4. A foldable container according to claim 1 wherein said oblong slots are open in the upper region thereof and said means for releasably securing said pin means includes a means disposed on one of said first and second walls defining said oblong slot for constricting the opening thereof to a width which is smaller than the cross-sectional size of said pin means, said pin means for constricting being elastically enlargeable to release said pin means from said oblong slot.
5. A foldable container according to claim 4 wherein said means for constricting includes at least one beadlike projection which is elastically flexible to constrict the opening width of said oblong slots.
6. A foldable container according to claim 5 wherein the wall of said oblong slot provided with said bead-like projection is provided with a smaller wall thickness below said bead-lilac projection than the wall thickness of the opposite wall of said oblong slot.
7. A foldable container according to claim 4. wherein one of said first and second walls defining said oblong slots is of a greater vertical height than the other of said walls and is provided with a spring-pretensioned means for constricting the opening of said oblong slots to a smaller width.
8. A foldable container according to claim 7 wherein the opening of said oblong slots is arranged toward the interior of the container.
9. A foldable container according to claim l wherein the container includes four walls and said oblong slots have a length which corresponds to the sum of the wall thicknesses of said four walls.
10. A foldable container according to claim 1 wherein said oblong slots are formed in respective corner brackets fixed to said frame member.
11. A foldable container according to claim l wherein one of said walls defining said oblong slots is a portion of a side edge of one of the walls forming the sides of the container and said pin means are hinge bolts threadably engageable with said side edge.
12. A foldable container according to claim l l wherein said means for releasably securing includes in the other of said walls defining said oblong slot includes an opening the cross-sectional size of which is at least equal to the cross-sectional size of said hinge bolts.
13.. A foldable container according to claim lll further comprising means paralelly guiding the plurality of walls forming the sides of the container including at least two pinions disposed at the lower end of each of the side walls on respective side edges thereof, said two pinions being fixed at the ends of a common rotary shaft disposed in each of the side walls, said pinions cooperating with a ratchet extending parallel to said oblong slots.
' 14. A foldable container according to claim 13 wherein the ends of each rotary shaft function as the hinge bolt.
15. A foldable container according to claim 13 wherein said ratchets are integral with frame member.
16. A foldable container according to claim 1 wherein one of said walls defining said oblong slots includes a projection and said walls forming the respective side of the container are provided with recesses which interengage said projections when the walls of the container are assembled.
17. A foldable container according to claim 16 wherein the other of said walls defining said oblong slot is a stop member cooperating in a linear manner with the assembled walls of the container.
18. A foldable container, the walls of which are hingedly connected at their lower ends with the bottom frame via hinge pins engaging into openings provided therein, in such a manner that each opening associated with a hinge pin is fashioned as a oblong slot open at its upper end, which slot has a width which is larger with respect to the cross-sectional size of the hinge pin, and the upper end of the opening of which is associated with a releasable blocking means for preventing an exiting of each pin from its respective slot, characterized in that the oblong slot for at least two opposed-walls have the same length and their ends have the same distance from the bottom of the container; and that the blocking means associated with each oblong slot has a spacing from the lower end of the slot which permits a displacement of the hinge pin for superimposing the walls of the container.
19. A foldable container according to claim 18 wherein said container is provided with a lid for covering the top thereof.
20. A foldable container according to claim 5 wherein said bead-like projection faces the interior of said oblong slots.
21. A foldable container according to claim 5 wherein the other of said walls defining said oblong slots is provided with at least one bead-like projection in the upper region thereof.
22. A foldable container according to claim 20 wherein said bead-like projections extend toward the exterior of the container.