US 3860348 A
An applicator package for storing and dispensing a fluid product comprises a housing defining an open-ended chamber. A compressible sponge-like dauber, saturated with the product to be dispensed, is mounted within the chamber and held in compression by a cover foil which overlies and hermetically seals the open end of the chamber. In use, the cover foil is peeled off to allow the dauber to extend through the open end of the chamber so that it can be brought into contact with the work surface. An outwardly extending flange may be provided about the periphery of the chamber opening to facilitate attachment of the cover foil and to protect the user from contact with the product.
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
[ Jan. 14,1975
United States Patent Doyle APPLICATOR PACKAGE FOR FLUID PRODUCTS Primary Examiner--Lawrence Charles Edward J. Doyle, Hatboro, Pa.
 Assignee: Schick Incorporated, Lancaster, Pa.
June 1973 An applicator package for storing and dispensing a Appl. No.: 367,625 fluid product comprises a housing defining an openended chamber. A compressible sponge-like dauber, saturated with the product to be dispensed, is
mounted within the chamber and held in compression by a cover foil which overlies and hermetically seals the open end of the chamber. In use, the cover foil is 25 6 m z l2 3 0 11 4mm 3 0 24 4 B 1 0 4 4 1 m 0 l 0 0 41b mmh c n.r Una nu& L mf C WM .m UhF HUT 555 1.1.1
peeled off to allow the dauber to extend through the open end of the chamber so that it can be brought into  References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS contact with the work surface. An outwardly extend- 2,911,664 11/1959 Zecchini............................. 3,299,464 OBrien et a1.
foil and to protect the user from contact with the product.
4 X 1 1 /l O 4 Stanton............. 9/1969 FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS 2 Claims, 5 Drawing Figures 1,373,789 8/1964 France................................ 401/202 APPLICATOR PACKAGE FOR FLUID PRODUCTS BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION This application relates in general to applicators, and more particularly, to a disposable one-use applicator package for conveniently storing and dispensing measured quantities of a liquid or paste substance such as shoe polish.
On many occasions, and particularly when traveling away from home, it is desirable to have small measured quantities of various liquid or paste-like products such as shoe polishes, cleaning solutions, and special soaps available in sealed packages whereby they can be conveniently stored, dispensed and applied as the need arises. To be suitable for this purpose, the packages utilized should provide a hermetically sealed chamber for retaining a desired quantity of the product without deterioration or leakage, and an integral applicator means, such as an internal dauber, whereby the product can be applied to a desired surface without contact to the user. An additional requirement of these applicator packages, particularly where the packages are intended for one-time use, as when dispensing shoe polish or cleaning fluid in single-use quantities, is that they be economical in construction, and be adaptable to automated assembly methods so that their assembled cost is sufficiently low to warrant disposal after a single use. Unfortunately, prior-art applicator packages have not been entirely satisfactory in that they have either been unnecessarily complicated and therefore undesirably expensive for one-time use, or have been awkward to use and have not sufficiently protected the user from contact with the applied product.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION Accordingly, it is a general object of the present invention to provide a new and improved applicator package for fluid or paste products.
It is a specific object of the present invention to provide a new and improved applicator package which is more economical to construct and therefore better suited for one-time use applications.
It is another specific object of the present invention to provide a new and improved applicator package which offers improved protection for a user from contact with the product contained within.
Accordingly, the invention is directed to an applicator package for storing and dispensing a fluid product onto a desired surface. The applicator packages comprise a housing defining a chamber for containing the fluid product, the chamber having an open end. Means comprising a compressible dauber attached to the housing are provided for applying the product to the surface, the dauber having a compressed state wherein the dauber is contained entirely within the chamber, and an extended state wherein the dauber extends through the open end of the chamber. Means comprising a cover extending over the open end of the chamber are further provided for hermetically sealing the chamber and retaining the dauber in the compressed state prior to use.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS The features of the present invention, which are believed to be novel, are set forth with particularity in the appended claims. The invention, together with the further objects and advantages thereof, may best be understood by reference to the following description taken in connection with the accompanying drawings, in the several figures of which like reference numerals identify like elements, and in'which:
FIG. I is a perspective view of anapplicator package constructed in accordance with the' invention.
FIG. 2 is a bottom view of the applicator package of FIG. 1 showing the bottom cover partially peeled away to expose a portion of its internal dauber.
FIG. 3 is a cross-sectional view taken along lines 33 of FIG. 1.
FIG. 4 is a side elevational view of the applicator package of FIGS. 1-3 showing the bottom cover removed and the dauber extended into position for applying a fluid product contained within the package to a surface.
FIG. 5 is a perspective view showing the applicator package of the invention in use.
DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT Although it will be appreciated that the applicator package of the present invention can be fabricated in various shapes and sizes for storing and dispensing various types of products, it finds particular utility as a one use dispenser for small quantities of fluid products such as shoe polishes, and accordingly will be described with particular reference to an exemplary embodiment consisting of a small one-use applicator package 10 for ap plying shoe polish to a pair of shoes.
Referring now to the figures in greater detail, and particularly to FIG. 1, the applicator package 10 is seen to comprise a semi-rigid housing 11 formed by means of a drawing or molding operation from a formable plastic such as polyethylene. The housing defines an oblong body portion 12 formed by interconnection of two spaced-apart upstanding side walls, and a handle portion 13 formed by interconnection of two additional upstanding side walls of reduced spacing. The body portion 12 of the housing includes a flange 14 which extends about the periphery of the housing at its bottom end, which is open and which provides access to the chamber 15 (FIG. 3) formed by the hollow interior of the housing.
A flexible impervious cover 16, consisting of a sheet of aluminum foil or other suitable material shaped to extend to the circumferential edges of flange 14, is sealed across the open bottom of housing 11 by means of layer 17 of adhesive applied to adjacent surfaces of the foil and the flange. This results in a peelable hermetic seal being formed for chamber 15 which prevents evaporation or deterioration of the contents thereof during extended storage. It will be appreciated that other types of seals can be used instead, such as seals fon'ned by the application of heat and pressure, and that the cover foil 16 can be folded over the edge of flange 14 if necessary to achieve a tighter seal. Furthermore, the cover foil 16 can include an overlying laminate to facilitate printing product identification and instructions for use on the cover.
To facilitate application of the product it contains, applicator package 10 includes a dauber 18 mounted within chamber 15. This dauber is made from a sponge- Iike resilient material of the open-cell absorbent type, such as cellulose, and preferably has numerous cells sufficiently small and fine so that liquid is uniformly discharged onto a contacting surface. Referring to FIG.
3, the dauber is secured by means of a layer 19 of a suitable adhesive or cement at its upper end to the inside top surface of chamber 15 at the point where housing 11 narrows to form handle portion 13. It will be appreciated that dauber 18 can be secured within chamber 15 by other means, such as by a force-fit between it and the interior surface of the handle portion of housing 11, or by means of various sizes and shapes of clips which may be either press fit or molded into housing 11. In either event, dauber 18 is cut to be slightly smaller in its outside dimensions than the inside dimensions of chamber 15 so that it can freely expand from a compressed to an extended position.
Referring again to FIG. 3, when the cover foil 16 is in position dauber 18 is held in a compressed state within chamber 15 by reason of the overlying foil 16 preventing expansion of the dauber. It is in this state that the applicator package would normally be marketed, housing 11 forming, by virtue of the compression of dauber 18, a compact hermetically sealed package which can be conveniently carried by the user.
When cover 16 is peeled away from housing 11, dauber 18 extends into its expanded position, as shown in FIG. '4. It will be appreciated that in this extended position dauber 18, which is normally saturated with the product to be dispensed, can be conveniently used to apply the fluid product to both flat and curved surfaces, such as the various leather surfaces of a shoe, by grasping the handle portion 13 of the housing, as shown in FIG. 5. During such application of the product flange 14 serves to protect the user from contact with the product.
In the manufacture of applicator packages the product to be dispensed can be introduced into chamber 15 either before or after the cover foil 16 has been sealed in place. In either case the cellulose sponge-like material of dauber 18 can be conveniently cemented in place while dry and compressed, since it then has no tendency to expand. Where the liquid product is to be introduced prior to sealing it is advantageous to partially seal cover foil 16 in position to hold dauber 18 in compression before adding the product to chamber 15. Alternatively, by providing sufficient volume within handle portion 13, it would be possible to invert housing 11 and place the product within the handle portion of the housing. The dauber 18 would then be cemented in place while dry and compressed and the cover foil 16 would be sealed in position to close chamber 15. Then, upon subsequent uprighting of housing 11, the fluid product in handle portion 13 is absorbed by dauber 18, causing that element to expand against cover foil 16.
Where the product is introduced after the sealing operation, the dauber 18 is secured in position dry and compressed and the cover foil 16 is sealed in place. Then, the fluid product is injected into chamber 15 by piercing housing 11 or cover foil 16 with a hollow-core needle or other appropriate means and subsequently absorbed by dauber 18. A nipple (not shown) may be molded into housing 11 for this purpose. Upon removal of the needle, chamber 15 is sealed by application of a suitable sealant to preserve the liquid product contained within.
The aforedescribed methods of assembling the applicator packages lend themselves to automation, the 6 quantities sufficient for a single use or operation and suitable for absorption by the dauber employed in the particular-sized applicator package being assembled.
Once the applicator package has been assembled, the dauber 18 remains in its compressed state, as shown in FIGS. 1 and 3, with the fluid product to be dispensed, absorbed and contained therein. When the contents of the package 10 are to be used, the package is opened by peeling the cover foil 16 away from the flange 14 of housing 11. To facilitate this peeling operation the flange 14 extending around the periphery of the bottom of housing 11 has rounded edges and at least one edge of cover foil 16 is not rounded. This exposes a portion 20 of cover foil 16 which can be readily grasped by an operator when peeling the cover from the housing.
It will be appreciated that other sizes and shapes of applicator packages can be employed. For instance, the housing 11 can be circular and the cover 16 can be annular with one or more tabs extending beyond its periphery to facilitate removal. Furthermore, housing 11 may be molded of other types of materials including metal foils, and can be either transparent or opaque in various colors to indicate its contents. For example, in the case of a shoe polish dispenser the color of the housing can be selected to indicate the color of the shoe polish contained within.
Thus, a novel applicator package has been shown and described which provides an economical and convenient means for storing and dispensing measured amounts of fluid products, including liquids, creams and waxes. Prior to use the package provides a hermetically sealed storage chamber for the product, and once opened provides a convenient applicator for applying the product to a desired area. The applicator package, by reason of its economical construction, can be sized to provide sufflcient product for a single application and then discarded after one use.
While a particular embodiment of the invention has been shown and described, it will be obvious to those skilled in the art that changes and modifications may be made therein without departing from the invention in its broader aspects and, therefore, the aim in the appended claims is to cover all such changes and modifications as fall within the true spirit and scope of the invention.
1. An applicator package for storing and dispensing a fluid product onto a desired surface comprising, in combination:
a housing defining a chamber having an open top end and a closed bottom end and containing a quantity of said fluid product, said housing further providing an outwardly extending flange about the periphery of said open end;
means comprising a compressible sponge-like dauber attached to said bottom end for absorbing said product and applying said product to said surface, said dauber having a compressed state wherein said dauber is contained entirely within said chamber, and an extended state wherein said dauber extends through said open end of said chamber; and
means comprising a cover sheet of impervious material extending over said open end of said chamber and peelably sealed to said flange for hermetically sealing said chamber and retaining said dauber in said compressed state prior to use.
to facilitate grasping said applicator package, said dauber being attached to said housing at the transition between said body portion and said handle portion