US 3833098 A
A highly versatile reversible carrying case is comprised of at least two sections hinged for swinging movement from a closed position forming an attache-type carrying case to turn fully inside out or be held at a selected angle relative to one another so that an inner panel portion with a smooth, hard, planar inner utility surface of each section becomes exposed for a variety of uses including as a miniature desk, lecturn, display board, projector screen, light table and the like. At least one of the sections has an inner storage compartment formed therein with the inner panel portion being movable to provide access into the inner storage compartment. The sections are releasably fastened in the closed position and each have a retractable handle for carrying purposes. The inside surfaces of the compartment are used for light reflection or as a projector screen surface.
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent 1 1 Alderman 15 MULTIPLE USE REVERSIBLE CARRYING CASE AND SYSTEM  Inventor: Willis 11. Alderman, 11287 w. 26th PL, Lakewood, Colo. 80215 22 Filed:, Aug. 7., 1972 21 Appl. No.: 278,205
52 U.s.cl.....- ..190/11,190/1,190/51,
' 16/150 51 Int. Cl. A45c 9/00  Field ofSearch ..150/1.6;'190/1,11,16,
190/42, 49, 51, 52; 240/2 AD, 2 D, 2 AT, 2 P, 6.4 B; 350/117; 40/106.1; 248/455, 454,
[56.] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 929,074 7/1909 Brown 190/16 1,274,003 7/1918 Christie 190/51 2,211,660 8/1940 Kidd 312/231 2,219,524 l0/l940. Lindley 16/150 X 2,450,757 10/1948 I-lutchison 190/1 X 2,560,335 7/1951. Ericson 350/117 2,962,825 12/1960 Bravo 40/1061 Sept. 3, 1974 3/1963 Gee ..190 1 3/1970 Simmons ..40/106.IX
Primary ExaminerDonald F. Norton Attorney, Agent, or Firm-Ance1 W. Lewis, Jr.
 ABSTRACT A highly versatile reversible carrying case is comprised of at least two sections hinged for swinging movement from a closed position forming an attachetype carrying case to turn fully inside out or be held at a selected angle relative to one another so that an inner panel portion with a smooth, hard, planar inner utility surface of each section becomes exposed for a variety of uses including as a miniaturedesk, lecturn,
display board, projector screen, light table and the like. At least one of the sections has an inner storage compartment formed therein with the inner panel portion being movable to provide access into the'inner storage compartment. The sections are releasably fastened in the closed position and each have a retract- I able handle for carrying purposes. The inside surfaces of the compartment are used for light reflection or as a projector screen surface. 1
18 Claims, 12 DrawingFigures a;aaa.oss
PATENTEDSEP 31924 samw a MULTIPLE USE REVERSIBLE CARRYING CASE AND SYSTEM BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION This invention relates generally to carrying cases and more particularly to=a novel reversible carrying case with at least two sections adapted to be carried like an attache case and turn relative to one another on a hinge inside out along corresponding sides to expose inside structure adapted for a variety of uses.
At the present time there are no known products in the nature of a carrying case available in which a person may satisfactorily write when seated in a chair with the device supported on the lap of the person. There are many possible applications for such a device including use during travel, when in the office, in the field, or at home in a comfortable chair. While some attempt has been made to utilize an inside of an attache type case for such writing purposes, no known attache type cases have been entirely satisfactory. Moreover, there is no known attache case available which affords sufficient flexibility to serve more than one 'purpose when turned inside out. Previous attempts to'provide reversible carrying cases such as that shown in US. Pat. No. 2,443,182 have soft bag-like sections and reverse the sections to more readily render accessible the contents contained therein but do not provide enough versatility in the construction thereof to make the sections useful for several purposes. y v
Accordingly, it is an object of this invention to provide a novel carrying case which is reversible inside out making it suitable for a variety of uses including for use as a miniature desk, lecturn, display board, projector screen, light table and the like. i
Another object of this invention is to provide a novel reversible carrying case characterized by being made of two sections each having a smooth, hard, planar, inner utility surface extending substantially the full extent of the inside of the associated section.
for carrying purposes. Each section hasan inside panel portion hingedly secured thereto to provide access into the inner compartment and the composition of the inside panel portion is varied for different purposes. The panel portions may be constructed of Plexiglass and be transparent with a removable projector screen surface on the inner backside thereof for use as a projector screen or the panel portion may be translucent with a light reflecting surface on the inner backside of the section with a light source in the compartment for use as a light table, the sections also being particularly suited for display and/or writing purposes. i 7
Other objects, advantages and capabilities of the present invention will become more apparent as the description proceeds takenin conjunction with the accompanying drawings in which:
FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a carryingcase embodying features of thepresent invention in the closed carrying position;
FIG. 2 is a perspective view of the carrying case with one section pivoted away from the other from the closed position through an angle of about 90 to a partially open position with, both inside panels pivoted through a relatively small angle to a partially open position; I
FIG. 3 is a perspective view of the carrying case in a fully open inside-out position;
FIG. 4 isa perspective view of I the case in which one of the case sections-has been rotated about 270 from the closed position one section supported upright Yet another object of this invention is to provide a novel case in which additional sections may be readily added and yet will fold intov a sandwiched or stacked relation for carrying purposes. j
Still a further object of this invention is to provide a novel carrying case principally characterized by having two sections hinged to swing a full revolution relative to one another and be disposed in a sandwiched relation so that inner smooth surfaces may be disposed at selected angular positions and when the sections are fully inside out and parallel to one another serves, inter alia, as a miniature writing desk positioned on the lap for use.
- SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION". I
In accordance with the present invention in a preferred embodiment shown there is provided at least two sections with each having a smooth, planar, hard, inner utility surface extending the full extent of theinside of the associated section and at least one .section having an inner storage compartment. The sections are hinged together for swinging movement to turn completely inside out to exposethe inner utility surfaces for a variety of uses including for use as a miniature desk, a lecturn', projection screen, light board, display board and the like. The sections are releasably fastened together in the closed position and each have a retractable handle to serve as a projector screen; i
FIG. 5 is a perspective view' of the case in which one section been rotated about 300 relative to the other section from' the closed position-with the free endsof the sections serving as thebase of a lectum and a light and 'a sheet support member added;
FIG. SAis a fragmentary sectional view showing the attachment of the sheet support member; I
FIG. 6 is a side elevation view of the case sections with one case section having been rotated 1.80" from the closed position with both sections disposed .in an upright position with the ends flush and the outer'surfaces coplanar; I
FIG. 7 is a plan-view of a fragment of one section which is made up of four channel members with portions broken away to show interior construction together with the retracted position of the section handle shown in dashed lines;
FIG. 8 is a plan view of the case in the closed position with some of the hinge straps removed to show the arrangement of the slots in the lower channel members;
' FIG. 11 is a perspective view of another form of car-1 rying case embodying features of the present invention withadditional inner sections.
DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS The carrying case shown in FIGS. 1 through of the drawings in general comprises two case sections designated A and B hingedly connected along adjacent corresponding side edges by a universal hinge generally designated by numeral 13 which permits each of the sections to swing through a full revolution betweena closed position shown inFIG. l and an inverted insideout open position shown in FIG. 3. The sections are releasably fastened together in the closed position by suitable cooperating male and female fastening portions 14 and 15 located at the center along the inside upper edge of sections A and B, respectively. Each section A and B has a retractable handle 16 and 17, respectively, secured at the upper side to permit the case to be hand carried.
The carrying case shown has a removable flexible side strap 18 releasably secured along each side of each section. Each strap has a plurality of eyelets 19 at spaced intervals along the length thereof secured at the ends by screw fasteners 20 at opposite ends thereof to hold the sections at a selected angular position relative to one another. The side straps 18 are preferably made of a flexible fabric such as woven nylon with the eyelets 19 located at each end and at spaced intervals between the ends. The screw fasteners 20 extend through the eyelets and thread into apertures in the side channel members. When not in use, the straps are carried within each side channel member and held in place by the fasteners 20 which again thread into apertures in the side channel members.
The sections A and B are held by the side straps 18 at various angular dispositions. For example, with section B turned 270 relative to section A from the closed position, the case is usable as a projector screen as shown in FIG. 4. With case section A turned about 320 relative to case section B, the case is usable as a lecturn as shown in FIG. 5. Moreover, the case may be opened only with one case section pivoted 180 from the closed position and the inner surfaces of the case sections form a coplanar surface as shown in FIG. 6 and described more fully hereinafter.
In the illustrative embodiment shown in FIGS. 1
through 10, each of the sections A and B shown are generally of a corresponding size and shape and construction so that a description of one generally applies to both with some variations as will be described in detail hereinafter. Section A includes opposed upper and lower channel, members 21 and 22, respectively, and opposed end channel members 23 and 24 connected at the corners to members 21 and 22 in an open framework together with a thin flat outer panel 25 and a thin flat inner panel 26-mo'unted on the framework to form the inner storage compartment 27 therein with the straight outer edges of the panels being flush with the outer edges of the legs of the associated channel members so that the inside surfaces extend continuously through substantially the full extent of the inside of each section. 3
Each lower channel member has a similar transverse cross section and with reference to member 22 comprises an intermediate web 22a, an outer leg 22b, and an inner leg 22c which is shorter than the outer leg to at least allow for the thickness'of the hinge straps described hereinafter.
The outer panel 25 is fixedly secured to the framework as with an adhesive, rivets or the like and the inner panel 26 is pivotally mounted on the lower channel member 22 with a suitable inside hinge represented at 28 to permit the inner panel 25 to swing away from the framework and provide access'into the inner storage compartment 27.
A suitable light source 29 is mounted in the compartment 27 which maybe battery powered or powered by conventional AC electric line power in a suitable electric cord. The inside surface of the outer panel 25 designated 25a is a light reflector surface andthe panel 26 shown is a translucent Plexiglass sheet or the like making section A suitable for use as a light table. This light reflector surface may be provided as a coating on the inside of the panel 26 or as a separate insert sheet. In its use as a light table an object such as microfilm, slides, transparencies and microforms may be placed on the top or outer surface of panel 26 and edited.
The outer surface of outer panel 25 is a wear surface of high wear material such as vinyl plastic which may be of a selected color. The Plexiglass with a smooth, hard outer surface which is particularly suited for use as a writing surface or the like when the-sections A and B are turned inside'out as shown in FIG. 3.
Likewise, section B includes upper and lower channel members 31 and 32, respectively, and a pair of opposed end channel members 33 and 34 connected to members 31 and 32 to form anopen framework with an outer panel 35 and an inner. panel 36 mounted on the framework to form an inner storage compartment 37. The inner panel 36 is pivotally mounted to the lower channel member 33 with a suitable inside hinge 38 to swing away from the framework to provide access into the storage compartment 37..A removable reversible sheet 35a is mounted in compartment 37. Sheet 35a may be made of aluminum with one side painted white to form a screen projector surface for a movie projector or the like with the other side painted black to display photographs or the like. I,
The handles 16 and 17 are of a similar construction and as best seen in FIG. 7 with specific reference to section A handle 16 comprises a'pliable strap 40 inserted into a pair of spaced apart rigid loops 41 and 42 in the outer channel and affixed thereto at opposite ends so that the handle may be extended for carrying as shown and be retracted wherein it lays along the inside of the channel and does not protrude therefrom as shown in dashed lines at 40a.
For the hinge 13, joining the sections together, each of the lower channel members 22 and 32 of sections A and B, respectively, have a plurality of elongated slots arranged in a staggered or alternating order. Channel member 22 has one group of slots'designated 71 being formed inone side of the web and another group of slots designated 72 formed 'inthe opposite side of the web with each slotof the first group 71 offset a' slot length from a slot in the second group 72. In turn, lower channel member 32 has one group of slots 51 in one side of the web and another group of slots 52 formed in the other opposite side of the web. When the lower channel members are in an aligned position facing one another as shown in FIG. 9, theone group of straps 53 the other channel member to extend from diagonally opposite points on said sections so that the two groups of straps 53 and 54 cross or intersect at their midpoints between the lower channel members. This strap arrangement allows each'section to swing through a full revolution relative to the other section.
With the two lower channel members of the two sections in a juxtaposed relation as shown in FIG. 10, a group of hinge straps 53 extend along the back side of the web through a slot, then over the adjacent leg portion and down through a corresponding slot in the other channel member. Each portions of the straps extend along the back of the web and are shown as fixedly secured thereto as with an adhesive as representedat 56.
When used as a lecturn as shown in FIG. 5, a socket 61 at each corner. of the framework receives a male headed portion 62a formed on a detachable sheet support member 62 suited for supporting a sheet material on one inner surface thereof as with. a conventional lecturn. The inner panel 26 has notched corner portions 26a to receive the sockets 61 as well as a center notch 26b to receive fastener portion 15. Moreover, there is provided a suitable lamp attachment -63 releasably mounted on the lower channel member 22 to light sheet material or script supported on the lecturn in the channel of member 62. The lamp attachment 63 may be powered by a conventional DC battery power pack or an AC line power and the lamp attachment will include a bulb and outer shade portion with a suitable flexible neck to direct the light onto the utility surface of panel 26.
When used as a vertical display as shown in FIG. 6, the sections A and B are held end to end abutting one another at adjacent side edges in, a flush relation by rigid side brackets 18a which insert into the side channel members and are secured in place by the screw type fasteners 20 which extend intov apertures in the web of the side channel members. A pair of feet members 18b and 18c of a right angle shape press fit into the channels against one another and have lower portions which project'outwardly in opposite directions to support'the planar configuration upright as shown.
In another form of the present invention shown in FIG. 11 there is provided a pair of intermediate sections designated C and D sandwiched between case sections A and B like an accordion using the hinge structure 13 at connected ends so that the sections fold like an accordion between a closed sandwiched position wherein they may be carried like an attache case and an open position in which the outer surfaces of corresponding surfaces are in a common plane. In this form, the intermediate sections preferably have both panels made of a transparent material which make is particularly suitable for use as a display for collections of stamps and the like.
From the foregoing it is readily apparent-that the present invention utilizing a thin sheet of Plexiglass for smooth, durable surface forwriting purposes and then straight side edges with only slightly rounded corners make it especially suited for use as for example a draftsman wherein a T-square may be placed along one side to draw straight lines. Further thedevice may be used by stamp collectors wherein the stamp displays may be held under the Plexiglass sheets and particularly this is,
. distinguishable from the recessed structure shown.
by properly sizing the case sections and making the inner channels from light weightmaterial such as aluminum that will be a'relatively light weight and will readily fit on the lap of a person when seated in a'chair. The recesses permit the storage of accessory items such as the side straps and also allow the attachment of sheets to the panels by means of a clip or the like. The
Finally, a device utilizing features of the present invention may be readily used at home and the office meetings, while traveling on a plane, train or car and practically any time or any place and allows many uses of the same structural arrangement for different purposes.
Although the present invention has been described with a certain degree of particularity, it is understood that the present disclosure has been made by way of example, and that details of structure may-be made with out departing from the spirit thereof.
What isclaimed is: v
1. In a reversible J carrying case, the combination comprising:
two sections having a corresponding outline with at least'one section having a substantially smooth, hard, planar, inner utility surface'extending' continuously throughout substantially the fullextent of the inside of the associated section and at least one of said sections having 'an inner storagecompartment; hinge reversible means connecting corresponding sides of the sections together for swinging move ment of each section-through substantially afull revolution relative to the other section between a closed position and an open positionexposing the inner utility surface for use; and I means to releasably secure the sections together in the closed position for carrying.
2. In a reversible carrying case as set forth in claim 1 wherein each said section is in the form of a case with an inner storagecompartment,said case sections being of a corresponding size and shape.
3. In a reversible carrying case as set forth in claim 2 wherein at least the hinged sides and outersides opposite the hinged sides of each section are inwardly rec ssed. I I
4."In a reversible carrying case as set forth in claim 1 wherein said reversible hinge means includes at least two additional intermediate-sections connected between said first-mentioned sections along adjacent sides like an accordion, each of 'said sections being hingedly connected to swing through substantially afull revolution relative to the section to which it is directly connected.
5. In a reversible carrying case as set forth in claim I 4 whereinea'ch said intermediate section includes a pair of opposed transparent panels having substantially smooth, hard, planar surfaces.
6. In a reversible carryingcase'as set forth in claim l-wherein' said section with a storage compartment has an outer and winner panel held ina spaced apart relation with an inner channel sandwiched between the outer and inner panels and located along marginal edges thereof with at least the inner of said panels having straight edges terminating at rounded comers, said inner panel having the substantially smooth, hard, planar, innerutility surface.
7. In a reversible carrying case as set forth in claim 6 wherein said inner panel is arranged to provide access into the associated inner compartment.
8. In a reversible carrying case as set forth in claim 6 wherein said section with a storage compartment has an inner light reflecting surface portion opposite the associated inner panel, a light source in said storage compartment, said inner panel being made of a translucent material to form a light table.
9. In a reversible carrying case as set forth in claim 6 wherein said inner channel extends at least along opposed side edges and the hinged edge with the channel being open toward the outside of the case to form a pcripheral recess.
10. In a reversible carrying case as set forth in claim 1 wherein there is provided a screen projector surface portion on a removable sheet associated with one of said sections.
11. In a reversible carrying case as set forth in claim 1 further including holding means coupled between the sections to hold the sections at a selected angle relative to one another.
12. In a reversible carrying case as set forth in claim 1 wherein said utility surface is provided by a relatively thin sheet of Plexiglass.
13. A reversible carrying case as set forth in claim 1 wherein said hinge means includes a plurality of straps connected at diagonally opposite points on corresponding edges of said sections with each successive strap alternating between opposite points in the sections to provide a series of cross connections between said sections.
14. A reversible carrying case comprising:
two case sections having a corresponding outline and each having a smooth, hard, planar, inner utility surface extending continuously throughout substantially the full extent of the inside of the associated case section with each case section having an inner storage compartment, each case section including an inner panel hingedly mounted to provide access into the associated compartment with one face thereof forming said utility surface; universal hinge means including a plurality of flexible straps alternately connected at diagonally opposite points to join corresponding edges of the case sections together for swinging movement of each case section relative to the other section through substantially a full revolution between a closed position and an inside-out 'open position exposing the inner surfaces thereof for use;
means for releasably securing the case sections together in the closed position for carrying; retractable-handle means for carrying the sections in a dependent manner; and
means for releasably holding the sections at a selected angular position relative to one another.
15. A reversible carrying case comprising:
two case sections of a sandwich construction having a corresponding outline, each said case section having an inner framework of outwardly facing channels, an outer panel secured to the framework flush with the outer edges thereof and an inner panel pivotally mounted on the framework forming an inner storage compartment with the inner panel pivotally mounted to swing to provide access into the associated compartment, said inner panels having a smooth, hard, planar, inner surface;
one of the case sections having a light reflective portion on the inside thereof with'the associated panel being of a translucent material and a source of light in the compartment to form a light table;
the other of the case sections having a projector screen surface on the inside thereof with the associated panel being of a transparent material, said panels forming a writing surface when the case sections are turned inside out;
a universal hinge including a plurality of flexible straps alternately cross-connected at diagonally opposite points to adjacent sides of the channels to hold the case section together for swinging movement of each case section relative to the other section between a closed position with the sections in a sandwiched relation and an open inside-out position exposing the inner surfaces thereof for use;
fastener means including a male socket on one case section and a female socket on the other case section for releasably fastening the sections together in the closed position;
retractable handle means including a strap slidably mounted in each channel along a corresponding outer edge of each section arranged to move between a retracted position within the associated channel member and an extended position forming a loop beyond the associated channel for hand carrying purposes;
a side strap adapted to releasably connect to the sides of each of the sections at a selected angular position relative to one another.
16. A reversible carrying case as set forth in claim 15 17. A reversible carrying case set forth in claim 15 wherein said side straps are releasably mounted in the channel members in the framework when not in use.
18. In a reversible carrying case, the combination comprising:
two sections having a corresponding outline with at least one section having a substantially smooth, hard, planar, inner utility surface extending continuously throughout substantially the full extent of the inside of the associated section and at least one of said sections having an inner storage compartment;
hinge means connecting corresponding sides of the sections together for swinging movementof each section relative to the other section between a closed position and an openposition exposing the inner utility surface for use;
means to releasably secure the sections together in the closed position for carrying; V
said section with a storage compartment has-an outer and an inner panel held in a spaced apart relation with an inner channel sandwiched between the outer and inner'panels and located along marginal edges thereof with at least the inner of said panels having straight edges terminating'at rounded corners; and
said inner panel being hinged along an edge thereof